Four country-style recipes from CWA Victoria's new cookbook

Simple and hearty: Chicken Marengo is made for feeding family and friends.
Simple and hearty: Chicken Marengo is made for feeding family and friends. Photo: Cath Muscat/Murdoch Books

Australian food tastes have evolved as waves of migration have arrived over the years but there are some recipes that have stood the test of time.

Simple dishes made for sharing, feeding families and handing down through the generations – the Country Women's Association of Victoria's latest cookbook, From Our Kitchen to Yours, includes 185 recipes proven to work time and time again by home and community cooks all over the state.

Chicken Marengo

INGREDIENTS

CWA Victoria's new cookbook.
CWA Victoria's new cookbook. Photo: Cath Muscat/Murdoch Books
  • 1 chicken, jointed
  • ½ cup (75g) plain flour, seasoned with pepper and salt
  • 30g butter
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 12 button mushrooms
  • 4 French shallots or 1 onion, sliced
  • 3 large tomatoes, sliced
  • 250g tomato passata
  • ½ cup (125ml) dry white wine
  • ½ cup (125ml) chicken stock
  • 1 large garlic clove, chopped parsley, to garnish

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to moderate – 160-170C fan-forced (180-190C conventional).
  2. Dip chicken pieces in the flour, reserving the leftover flour.
  3. Fry chicken in melted butter and oil over medium heat for 5-10 minutes, until golden brown, turning to brown all over. Lift into casserole dish and add mushrooms, shallots and tomatoes.
  4. With the pan juices, make a sauce by mixing with tomato passata, wine, stock, garlic and reserved flour mix until smooth. Pour over chicken.
  5. Cook in moderate oven 1½-2 hours.
  6. Garnish with parsley.

Serves: 4

Extract from Our Kitchen to Yours by the Country Women's Association of Victoria, published by Murdoch Books
Cheese and corn fritters, Cottage pie, Cornish pasties, Chicken Marengo
Photographer: Cath Muscat
Single use only, ask Murdoch Books for republish permissions

Make the most of sweet and juicy corn kernels. Photo: Cath Muscat/Murdoch Books

Cheese and corn fritters

INGREDIENTS

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  • ½ cup (125ml) regular pouring cream
  • ¾ cup (250ml) milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup (150g) plain flour
  • 1½ cups (300g) corn kernels
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives or spring onions, plus extra to garnish
  • ¾ cup (75g) grated tasty cheese

METHOD

  1. Whisk cream, milk, eggs and flour until smooth. Add remaining ingredients, season with salt and pepper and mix well.
  2. Drop spoonfuls of mixture into a lightly oiled non-stick frying pan and cook over medium heat until golden brown, about 3 minutes each side.
  3. Drain on paper towel. Keep warm in oven, or serve immediately, sprinkled with extra chives or spring onion.

Serves: 4

Extract from Our Kitchen to Yours by the Country Women's Association of Victoria, published by Murdoch Books
Cheese and corn fritters, Cottage pie, Cornish pasties, Chicken Marengo
Photographer: Cath Muscat
Single use only, ask Murdoch Books for republish permissions

Comfort eating at its best. Photo: Cath Muscat/Murdoch Books

Cottage pie

INGREDIENTS

  • 1kg minced steak
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1½ tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon gravy powder
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 cup (250ml) water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • grated parmesan, for sprinkling
  • chopped parsley, to garnish

Topping

  • ½ cup (125ml) milk
  • 1.5kg potatoes, cooked and mashed
  • large dollop of butter
  • 1 egg

METHOD

  1. In a large saucepan, brown the steak in oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring to break up mince. Add onion, cook for about 5 minutes, until soft. Add tomato paste, gravy powder, curry powder, water, salt and pepper. Stir well, cover and simmer 15 minutes. Add more water if too dry.
  2. Mix topping ingredients together and beat until fluffy.
  3. Place steak mixture in greased casserole dish. Spread topping over, then sprinkle with parmesan.
  4. Bake in moderate oven – 160-170C fan-forced (180-190C conventional) – until browned on top for about 30-40 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Serves: 4

Extract from Our Kitchen to Yours by the Country Women's Association of Victoria, published by Murdoch Books
Cheese and corn fritters, Cottage pie, Cornish pasties, Chicken Marengo
Photographer: Cath Muscat
Single use only, ask Murdoch Books for republish permissions

A crowd-pleasing favourite. Photo: Cath Muscat/Murdoch Books

Cornish pasties

INGREDIENTS

  • 250g minced beef
  • 3 potatoes, peeled and coarsely grated
  • 2 large carrots, grated
  • 1 turnip, peeled and grated
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • ⅓ cup (20g) finely chopped parsley
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 sheets of frozen shortcrust or puff pastry, thawed
  • butter, for greasing
  • 1 egg

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C fan-forced (200C conventional).
  2. Place the meat in a bowl and add the potato, carrot, turnip and onion; and stir in the parsley, salt and plenty of pepper. Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
  3. Working one at a time, place the thawed pastry sheet onto a buttered baking tray. Pile the filling on one half of the pastry to within about 2.5cm of the edges. Cut around the edges to create a pasty shape, then fold over and seal by pinching both edges with your thumb and finger, or press together with a fork.
  4. Beat the egg and lightly brush the edges and the top of the pasties.
  5. Transfer to the oven, bake for 5 minutes.
  6. Reduce the oven temperature to 160C fan-forced (180C conventional) and bake for 15 minutes more, or until the pastry browns and some of the juices from the filling are beginning to leak out.

Serves: 4

This is an edited extract from Our Kitchen to Yours by the Country Women's Association of Victoria, published by Murdoch Books, RRP $36.99. Buy now