Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Brie Quesadillas

Brie Quesadillas

2 tbsp olive oil
1 red bell pepper, chopped into thin strips
1 onion, chopped into thin strips
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp sugar
pinch salt
100g soft brie cheese, sliced
2 wheat tortillas
tomato sauce, to serve

1) In a saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions, garlic and bell pepper. Cover and cook until softened and a little bit browned, stirring occasionally.

2) Add balsamic vinegar, sugar, salt and ginger. Stir to combine, cover, and cook until the liquid has been absorbed.

3) Remove cooked mixture from the saucepan into a bowl. Place 1 tortilla in the saucepan. Spread half of the cooked mixture on one half on the tortilla, arrange half of the cheese and cover with another side of tortilla. Press gently. Cover and cook on both sides until the cheese has melted and the sides are golden brown. Repeat with the remaining tortilla.

4) Remove from heat and slice. Serve warm with some tomato sauce.
Recipe by collecting memories

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Balsamic Mushrooms

Balsamic Mushrooms

Olive oil for cooking
8 extra large or 400g mushrooms, chopped into medium chunks
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped 
100ml balsamic vinegar
100ml light cream
Salt, to taste
Pepper. to taste

1) In a saucepan, heat two tablespoons of olive oil. Add mushrooms and garlic, toss to coat, cover and let cook until mushrooms release their liquid. Uncover and cook until almost all the liquid has evaporated. 

2) Pour in the balsamic vinegar and cook uncovered until it almost evaporates. Slowly pour in the cream and cook a few more minutes. You may want to increase the heat at this time. Season with salt & pepper and turn off the heat when there's still some liquid left in the pan.

Serve warm on toasted bread.

Makes enough for 4 slices of bread.

Recipe by collecting memories

Monday, November 18, 2013

Cauliflower Fried "Rice" with Balsamic Sauce

Cauliflower Fried "Rice" with Balsamic Sauce

1 small head cauliflower
2 tbsp olive oil, divided
2 eggs
1 onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
200g of frozen cubed carrots
200g of frozen peas
1 small head broccoli, chopped into small florets
1 cup frozen green beans, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt, to taste
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp sesame seeds, lightly toasted
Balsamic Sauce (recipe follows)

1) In a pot, bring some water to boil. Add green beans and cook for about 5-10 minutes or until softened. When they finish cooking, remove from the water and drain. Do not turn off the heat. Add frozen peas and carrots to the same water and bring to boil. Cook for about 4-5minutes or until thawed and slightly softened. Remove from water and set aside.

2) Grate cauliflower into rice sized pieces. Set aside.

3) Lightly beat the eggs. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a skillet over medium heat and add the eggs. Scramble the eggs and set aside.

4) Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes.

5) Add bell pepper, garlic and broccoli and cook, covered, for another 10 minutes until a little bit softened. Stir frequently. Add more olive oil if needed.

6) Stir in cauliflower, carrots, green beans and peas. Cover and cook for another few minutes. 

7) Stir in scrambled eggs and sesame seeds. Drizzle with 1 tbsp of olive oil and balsamic sauce. Serve immediately.

Balsamic Sauce:
120ml/1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
120ml/1/2 cup water
2/3 tsp Ginger
1/2 tsp mustard powder
2 tsp honey
1 tsp Salt
Pinch Pepper

1) In a saucepan, combine all the ingredients and cook on low heat to about 2/3 of its original volume. Let cool a bit before mixing with vegetables.

Recipe by collecting memories

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Pumpkin Custard Cake with Brown Butter Crumb Topping

Fall is coming to an end and before I start baking Christmas desserts I want to use up as much pumpkin as I can. You can't imagine how much pumpkin I have! First I wanted to make a simple pumpkin coffee cake but when I started making it I couldn't resist experimenting a little. What I'm the happiest about is that I decided to brown the butter for the crumb topping. Oh my!! It turned out fantastic! I've never tasted a better crumb topping. And luckily there was a generous amount of it. The cake batter was super moist, probably because of the pumpkin custard layer on top. The general outcome was amazing. The whole cake was very moist, creamy and that crumb topping made it perfect. It's not overly sweet what I liked too. Come on! I know you want that crumb topping.

Pumpkin Custard Cake with Brown Butter Crumb Topping

Crumb topping
70g butter, browned
100g light brown sugar
3/4 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
115g flour
Cake Batter
160g pumpkin puree
250g flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
100g white sugar
100g sour cream
½ tsp ginger
½ tsp salt
½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp oil

600g pumpkin puree
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ginger
60g white sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten

1) First, make the crumb topping. Melt 70g of butter in a pan over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, shaking the pan occasionally, until the butter turns its colour to brown. Be careful not to burn it. In a medium bowl, mix together light brown sugar, salt, flour and cinnamon. Stir in the browned butter and mix with your fingertips to make crumbs. Set aside.

2) Make the cake batter: In a bowl, mix together flour, white sugar, ginger, salt, cinnamon and baking powder. In another bowl, stir together pumpkin puree, eggs, sour cream and oil. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ones and stir to combine. Set aside.

3) For the filling, mix together all the ingredients until combined.

4) Preheat oven to 180C/350F and prepare a 20x20cm silicone baking dish. Spread half of the cake batter mixture. Spread the pumpkin filling on top. Cover with remaining cake batter mixture and sprinkle with crumbs. Bake for approximately one hour. Let cool completely before cutting.

Recipe by collecting memories

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Salted Carmelitas

You probably already know carmelitas which have been quite popular in the blogosphere recently. Now I know why! This is an amazing dessert, really. Imagine a chewy buttery oat bar filled with milk chocolate chips and salted caramel. You shouldn't eat more than two at once, even though it's hard to resist. 

Salted Carmelitas

120ml/1/2 cup half-and-half
30 caramels
1/3 tsp salt
150g unsalted butter, melted
125g/1 cup flour
125g/1 cup old fashioned oats
150g/3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
100g milk chocolate, chopped

1) In a small saucepan over low heat, combine together caramels, 1/3 tsp salt and half and half. Stir until completely smooth and set aside.

2) In a bowl, combine together the melted butter, brown sugar, flour, oats, 1/2 tsp salt and baking soda. Press down half of the mixture into the bottom of an 20x20cm baking pan. Bake at 180C for 5 minutes.

3) Remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle milk chocolate chips over the crust. Pour caramel sauce over chocolate chips. Crumble remaining oatmeal mixture over caramel. Return to oven and bake for additional 15-20 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Remove from the oven and cool completely before cutting.

Recipe adapted from here.

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Pan-Fried Spiced Chickpeas

Oven roasted chickpeas is one of my favourite healthy snacks. But unfortunately sometimes I am really lazy and impatient to preheat oven, line the tray with parchment paper etc. Okay, okay, this is really easy, but frying chickpeas in a pan is even easier. The result is crispy and spicy chickpeas. Just like from the oven, but five times quicker!

Pan-Fried Spiced Chickpeas

1 cup cooked chickpeas
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp chili paprika
1/3 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil

1) Combine the spices with salt and sprinkle over chickpeas, tossing them to coat evenly. 

2) Heat oil in a pan over medium-high heat and add chickpeas. Fry them until nicely roasted, tossing frequently so they don't burn. 

Recipe by collecting memories

Friday, November 01, 2013

Rustic Banana Peach Crumb Tart

Rustic Banana Peach Crumb Tart

Crumb Topping:
50g flour
50g sugar
½ tsp cinnamon
40g butter

2 peaches
1 tbsp flour
1 tbsp sugar
1 banana

170g flour
3 tbsp sugar
100g butter
2-4 tbsp ice water
1 egg for egg wash

1) Preheat oven to 190C.

2) Make the crumb topping: Combine together flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Cut in butter, knead with your hands until you have all the dry ingredients incorporated in butter. Set the mixture aside. 

3) Make the Crust: Combine together flour, sugar and salt. Cut in butter until crumbly. Gradually add water, tossing with a fork until dough forms a ball. Use your hands if needed. Roll out to a circle. Transfer to a baking tray lined with parchment paper.

4) Make the filling: Slice peaches into wedges (you may peel them if you wish). Slice the banana. Sprinkle fruits with flour and sugar and mix so all the sides are evenly coated.
5) Arrange fruit pieces on the crust, leaving about 5cm space on the edges. Fold the edges over the fruits and sprinkle the crumb mixture on top. Brush the edges of the crust with egg wash. Bake for about 45 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the fruits are cooked through. Serving suggestion: this is amazing with a dollop of vanilla ice ceam!

Recipe by collecting memories

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