Tag Archives: eggs

Coconut, Ginger and Lime Crème Brûlée

22 Jun

CB Square2I love my family and friends and my favourite thing in the world is cooking for the people I love. Sometimes however,  and before I hear any protests, I do appreciate this is through no fault of their own,  they make it a near impossible task.  I mean honestly, what can you make for dessert for a bunch that have among them the following dietary no-nos: lactose, gluten, any form of cheese and no meat whatsoever?  So, no cheese cake, no gelatine based desserts,  no ice-cream, no cakes or pies or tarts or cookies – which pretty much destroyed all the usual tricks I can quickly pull from my hat.

Secret confession time? I love challenges like this – and so to the internet to find solutions. Thanks to Tom Aikens for this amazing little number, which I’ve tweaked ever so slightly. I’ve used Asian flavours because we were having an asian inspired Barbecue,  but this is one of those wonderful desserts where the only flavour limit is your imagination – I think we’re doing a salted caramel one next or maybe one inspired by the Waterside Inn with pistachios.

CB INGTo start take:

  • six egg yolks
  • the zest and juice of one lime
  • a piece of ginger about the size of your thumb (ish)
  • 75gm golden caster sugar
  •  extra golden caster sugar for the brûlée
  • 500ml lacto free cream (if you aren’t lactose intolerant use double cream)
  • 125ml whole lacto free milk (if you aren’t lactose intolerant use whole milk)
  • 2 tsp of coconut flavour

CB Grated Ginger and Lime ZestHeat the oven to 160°C and finely grate the zest off of your lime and grate the ginger.

CB, Cream,  Milk, lime and gingerAdd the milk, the cream and the grated lime zest and ginger to a small sauce pan and slowly heat over a low flame.

CB Eggs, sugar,  coconut and limeJuice the lime and then place the lime juice,  the egg yolks,  (save the whites for marshmallows or meringues) the caster sugar and the coconut flavour into a large bowl (or the bowl of your mixer) and whisk until pale and fluffy.

CB Eggs mixedOnce your egg mixture looks like the one above check on your milk/cream mix – it should be just shy of boiling.

CB Strain CreamStrain the milk and cream mixture to remove the ginger pulp and lime zest – you want the crème to be smooth and creamy to contrast with the crunchy brûlée and if you leave the ginger and lime in,  it will just be gritty. Pour the strained milk/cream mix on to the egg mix and whisk the two together.

CB Unbaked Boil your kettle and fill a large,  flat bottomed, oven proof dish so that the water is about 1.5 cm deap.  Place the egg/cream mixture into your ramkins and place the ramkins into the oven proof dish. Place the dish into the oven and bake for about 45 minutes.

CB BakedThe tops of your custards should still have a slight wobble, BUT they SHOULD NOT be brown *blush*, but if they do brown a little, don’t panic, the brûlée will cover any errors.  Place the custards in the fridge for at least two hours or if you like to prepare ahead, overnight.

CB dust with sugarWhen you’re ready to serve dessert remove from the fridge and lightly dust the tops of your custard with a coating of golden brown sugar and then. . .

CB Blow TorchBURN BABY BURN   Lightly caramelise the sugar with a blow torch.  THIS IS THE MOST FUN EVER!  I may be a little sad.  If you don’t have a cooks’ blow torch run out and buy one now trust me you WILL thank me you can turn on the grill of your oven on to it’s highest setting and pop the dessert under the grill.  Keep an eye on the sugar and remove the moment sugar has melted.  Pop the desserts back in fridge for a few minutes to cool down and to harden the sugar and then dig in.

CB Finishing shot 2

 

 

 

 

Blueberry and Pistachio Pancakes

27 Apr

BPP FinishedThe BH and I have had a bit of a trying year.  We’ve both changed jobs AND we’ve bought a house.  Add to this a missing camera charger and you have a very guilty me apologising for the HUGE hiatus in my blogging.  That said this weekend rolled around and to both of our absolute surprise and wonder, there was nothing planned.  I’m not going to lie, we were both more than a little shell shocked by this and for a while just stared at each other, not really sure what to do.  Then, thankfully, sloth instinct kicked in and pancakes and old episodes of the X-Files were the order of the day.  Now I must confess, I simply can’t resist the urge to mess with pancakes, these however are my current favourites.

BPP IngTo start take:

  • 500gms self raising flour
  • 2 tsps baking powder (you want them to be really light and fluffy)
  • 2 eggs
  • 50 gms butter
  • 1 litre milk
  • 200 gms blueberries
  • 100gm roasted salted pistachios
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste (or vanilla essence if you prefer)
  • salt to taste
  • 2 Tbsp sugar (optional)

BPP Melting ButterMelt the butter in a small sauce pan and allow it to cool.  Then add  the milk to the butter.  Beat the eggs and add these along with the vanilla bean paste to the melted butter.  You want to make sure the butter is cool and you add the milk before you add the eggs otherwise you’re going to be eating buttery,  vanilla flavoured scrambled eggs, which I don’t think will taste as good as it sounds.

Sift BPPSift together your flour, salt, baking powder and sugar (if you’re using it) in a large mixing bowl.

BPP BatterThen slowly add the milk mixture to the flour mix and whisk until the mixture is smooth and lump free. BPP Chopped PistachiosRoughly chop your pistachios and wash and dry your blueberries.  Put these in two separate bowls next to your griddle or frying pan.

BPP FryingHeat your pan or griddle and using a paper towel, apply a thin layer of vegetable oil to the pan/griddle.  Using a soup ladle, spoon a circle of batter on to your griddle pan and then top with blueberries and pistachios.  When the batter bubbles, turn your pancake over and cook on the underside.

BPP Frying 2

Sorry, I just love the colours of the pistachios on the batter, so you’re being subjected to another photograph.  Place the pancake in a warming draw or oven on a low heat and repeat the process until you have used all the batter.

BPP YumDrizzle your pancakes with honey, you can use any syrup that takes your fancy, but there is something about the pistachios and blueberries that just really works with honey, and enjoy.

 

Mmmm Cookies

2 Feb

OM - finCookies are good for you.  No, Seriously they are! They make you smile and smiling boosts your immune system and lowers your blood pressure and it relieves stress.  Don’t believe me, look here .  The added benefits of these cookies is that they are also packed full of fruit, nuts and oats, so you see you have NO excuses for not making them.  These are also the best smelling cookies I have ever made, so if you ever need to fill the house with baking , this should be your go to recipe.

OM  - IngTo make 24 cookies take:

  • 1 cup almonds (or any nuts of your choice)
  • 100 gm of plain flour
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 3 cups of rolled oats
  • 170 gm of butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of apricots (of any dried fruit of your choice)
  • 1 cup white chocolate chunks
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla (essence, extract or paste)
  • a pinch of salt

OM - almondsPreheat the oven to 180°C.  Place the almonds on a baking tray and gently toast for about ten to fifteen minutes.  Allow them to cool slightly and then chop roughly into small chunks.  Toasted almonds have a much better flavour and will make a massive difference to the taste of your cookies.  While the nuts are toasting chop your apricots into raisin sized pieces.

om - creamNext cream your butter and sugar together until completely combined and fluffy. OM - vanilla

Add the egg and beat well and then add the vanilla and mix.  Scrape down the sides of your bowl and mix it again.

OM - flourAdd the baking soda and salt to the flour and fold into the butter mix. OM - oatsAdd the oats and mix well to combine. OM - chocolateThen add the toasted nuts, the apricots and the chocolate chunks and mix again.  I’m not going to lie to you, at this stage the best way to ensure everything is mixed in properly is to use your hands.

OM - ShapedOnce everything is mixed well, roll the mixture into balls about the size of a golf ball and then flatten them into cookie shapes on a lined baking tray.  If the cookie dough is being uncooperative, it helps to wet your hands with a splash of water.

OM - bakedBake in the preheated oven for fifteen minutes until golden, brown and delicious.  Leave on the tray for a minute or so and then transfer to a wire rack to cool.  Pour your self a glass of milk and smile.

Cheese Souffle

12 Sep

Souffles have gotten a really bad rap.  They are supposed to have caused chefs across the land to wail and beat their brows.  They are supposed to have sent the smuggest of Stepford wives to the corner trembling.  They are supposed to have caused even that F-ing Chef to cry like a baby girl.  I just don’t buy it.  Yes, they can come crashing down faster than an Essex girl wearing platforms, but that’s really the only tricky thing about them.   I mean when you get right down to it, all a cheese souffle is, is a simple cheese sauce enriched with eggs and baked.  Hardly rocket science. Come on, I’ll show you.

To make ten individual souffles take:

  • 6 eggs (separated)
  • 100gm butter
  • 100gm sharp mature cheddar cheese
  • 375 ml of milk
  • 60 gm of all purpose flour
  • 1tsp mustard
  • 1tsp paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 190°C.  Now melt the butter in a saucepan and use the some of the melted  butter to brush the sides and bottoms of the ramekins.  Some people like to coat the inside of the ramekins with bread crumbs, but I don’t think this is necessary. Then add the flour, mustard and paprika.  Cook the smooth paste for about 2-3 minutes.

Add the milk a little at a time and then, while constantly stirring, bring the mixture to a boil.  Once it comes to a boil, allow it to simmer for a further two minutes, then remove from the heat and add the cheese.  Once the cheese has melted beat in the egg yolks.

Whip the egg whites to a soft stiff peak and then add about 1/6 of the egg white to the cheese sauce.  Mix well to lighten the sauce and then gentely fold in the remaining egg white.

Carefully divide the mixture between the ten ramekins and then run your finger along the inside rim of each souffle.  Pop into the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes until poofed  up and golden, but with a slight wobble to the middle.

Serve with a crispy salad to contrast the texture of the soft souffle.  See, seriously easy.

Cheese Scones

5 Aug

 I like simple recipes when it comes to breakfast.   Before coffee I’m not really able to give a complicated dish the attention it deserves.  Heck, I’m not able to give anything the attention it deserves without caffeine.  So uncomplicated wins hands down every time, besides there is nothing more satisfying than taking six or seven ingredients and turning them into something that makes your mouth water, even in an un-caffeinated state.  The BH’s family traditionally serve cheese scones as a weekend breakfast.  A tradition I am more than happy to get behind.  They take no time at all to make while still filling the house with the smell of baking.   Now I suppose if we lived on the American side of the pond, these would be called biscuits, but I prefer the term scone.

To start take:

  • 250 gms of self-raising flour
  • 120gm of butter
  • 100gm of cheddar cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbs of milk
  • 2 tsp of paprika
  • 1 tsp of dried mixed herbs

Preheat the oven to 180 ° C.   Weigh out the flour and then add to a mixing bowl.  I know I didn’t need to photograph this, but the BH bought me an AWESOME  new scale and I wanted to show it off.

Add the butter to the flour and then mix using your hands until they resemble bread crumbs.

Add the cheese, paprika and herbs to the bowl and mix well until thoroughly combined.

Beat ONE  of the eggs and the milk together and then mix into the dry ingredients to form a sticky dough.

Place the dough on a well floured surface and flatten until about two and half centimetres thick.  Then cut out rounds of dough.  Place the scones on a baking tray and then beat the remaining egg and brush the tops of the scones with it.

Place in the oven and bake for about  12-15 minutes until golden brown.  Serve with some fruit juice for a simple, awesomely tasty brunch!

 

 

Lemon French Toast with Cherry Sauce

27 May

I’m sure by now you’ve realised just how much I adore brunch.  Putting a proper cooked breakfast on the table shouts weekend, but I suppose because Monday to Friday it’s muesli, I like to show off experiment a lot more at the weekend.   Unfortunately, I had to dash out the door early on Sunday morning, so there wasn’t much too much time to muck about in the kitchen, so it had to something quick and easy, but something that still yelled weekend.   Weighing those up, it had to be French Toast. 

I had also been to a farmer’s market on the Saturday where I had foolishly bought my body weight in cherries.  Now I LOVE cherries and when I have them in the house I find excuses reasons to put them in EVERYTHING.  Now I suppose I could just have served them with the French toast, but that would hardly be blogworthy now would it?

For the sauce take:

  • 250gms of  fresh cherries
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2tsp corn flour
  • 4 Tbs granulated sugar
  • 300 mls of water

For the toast take

  • 5 eggs
  • 1/2 a slightly stale loaf of your favourite bread
  • 100 ml of milk
  • 1 tsp lemon essence
  • the zest of one lemon

Pit and halve the cherries and add to a small sauce pan with the sugar and cinnamon.  Add the corn flour to the water and mix thoroughly then add to the saucepan.  Place on a medium heat and bring to the boil.  Allow the sauce to reduce until thick and gorgeously syrupy.

Slice the bread  and then beat the eggs, milk, lemon essence and zest together in a large flat bottomed bowl.  Heat a splash of oil in a frying pan and then dip the bread into the egg mixture allowing it to soak up some of the egg mix.

Fry the egg dipped bread  in the oil until golden brown and delicious on both sides and then serve with the cherry sauce.

For added awesomeness, serve with some greek yoghurt or creme fraiche. My idea of heaven is to use this.

Makin’ Mayo

29 Jan

I spent about eight years living in the East and I loved it.  My Better Half, or BH, and I were based in Taiwan which has a really rich culinary history influenced heavily by both China and Japan.  I learnt so much about food while living there.  I learnt to  deep fry basil for chicken dishes and what a godsend panko crumbs are and how the dinky little  bottles of soy sauce you buy in the west are never going to cut it if you’re going to really COOK with it.  I learnt what rice is really supposed to taste like.   I learnt to hate the cho tofu stand lady.

Most importantly I learnt to become self sufficient in the kitchen.  Unless I wanted to make a really long journey through insane traffic to that one specialty store that might possibly have pesto at an exorbitant price, I was going to have to make it myself.  The same went for curry sauces, pasta sauces, pie crusts, baked beans,  pastry and chocolate peanut butter cups.  Now that I’m back in the west, I must confess to buying all these in the store again.  The one thing I won’t buy anymore though, is mayo.

Despite its  reputation for being fickle  homemade mayonnaise is one of the easiest things to make.  It also knocks the socks off of any store bought variety AND it makes use of ingredients most of you have in your cupboards right now.

  • 2 egg yolks ( I freeze the whites and use them for meringues)
  • 1 heaped tsp of whole grain mustard
  • 1 Tbsp of white wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp of lemon juice
  • 500 ml of vegetable oil
  • a pinch of salt and a grind of pepper

Now the joy of these ingredients is they don’t have to be exact.  It you don’t have white wine vinegar, use cider vinegar.  Hot English mustard works just as well as whole grain.  Play with the flavours until you find the mayo that works for you.  I like  adding about 25 gm of a hard sharp cheese like  Pecorino Romano to give it a really nice savouriness.

Add all the ingredients except for the oil into a large bowl and break out your hand mixer.  You can of cause use a food processor, but cleaning one bowl is easier than cleaning a food processor.  If you’re trying to build upper arm strength, you could also try doing this with a whisk. Mix all the ingredients together to start the emulsion and then very slowly, drop by drop start adding the oil.  Put the oil in a squeezey bottle.   Using one of these helps control the amount of oil you’re adding.

Once you are confident the emulsion is holding, you can the oil a little faster.  Keep on adding the oil until you’ve used it all.  If at this point you find mayo a bit on the thick side you can thin it down with a tablespoon or two of boiling water. Oh, please remember, that although this is delicious, it is made with raw eggs, so keep in the refrigerator, and those with impaired immune systems, the elderly, expectant mothers and  very young children should probably steer clear.   Enjoy!

oh.four.one.

the port elizabeth blogger

The Banting Cook

Banting recipes – low carb, sugar free and gluten free. Banting recipes I have tried - those that have failed and those that have been a success! I am not a dietician, I'm just a gal who loves to cook banting food, and keep it as good as possible! Obviously all recommendations throughout this and other posts are not intended as an alternative, treatment, or prevention of diseases, medical treatments or advice. The reader takes full responsibility for counting nutritional information such as carbs, while trying any and all recipes :-)

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