Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Quinoa, watermelon and feta salad

1.5 cups quinoa
3 cups water
2 cups watermelon, rind removed and cut into small cubes
2 oz feta, crumbled
2 green onions, white and green parts, chopped thin
1/3 cup loosely packed mint, chopped thin
1/4 cup olive oil
juice of one lemon
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
pinch of salt and pepper

In a large saucepan, bring the quinoa and water to a rolling boil. Turn the heat down to a simmer, cover the pot halfway and cook until the water is completely absorbed and the quinoa is translucent (about 20 minutes). Let cool completely.
When the quinoa is cooled, add the remaining ingredients and fold carefully. Adjust the salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate until ready to eat.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Chocolate mousse tart

Crust ingredients:
1/2 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup (60gr) unsifted powdered sugar
1 egg yolk
pinch of salt
1/2 cup +2 tbsp all-purpose unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

Mousse ingredients:
1 box Dr Oetker dark chocolate mousse
1 cup cold milk

Prepare the crust:
In a mixer, whip together the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolk and pinch of salt and mix until incorporated. Add the flour and cocoa powder and mix briefly. Dump the whole mixture onto a lightly floured board and gather the dough into a smooth ball. Do not work the dough while in the mixer or it will toughen it up. Flatten the dough into a disk, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
Preheat oven to 350F and position a rack in the center.
When the dough is nice and cold, roll it out on a lightly floured board or in between two sheets of plastic. Cut out four 6-inch-rounds of the dough and fit them into four individual four inch tart pans. If the dough tears while you roll or/and transfer into the rings, just patch it with your fingertips. Line the dough with pieces of parchment paper, fill with pie weights or dry beans and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the weights and parchment paper. Cool crust completely.

Prepare chocolate mousse:
Prepare mousse according to directions on box.

Assemble tarts:
Fill crust with mousse and refrigerate for at least four hours or overnight.

Recipe adapted from Tartelette

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Asparagus beet salad

small bunch of asparagus
half a jar of pickled beets
half a jar of marinated artichoke hearts
4 oz spinach leaves
olive oil
balsamic vinegar

Steam asparagus. Arrange spinach leaves, steamed asparagus, beets and artichoke hearts on salad plate. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar, add salt and freshly ground pepper according to taste.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Gruyere and parmesan cheese souffle

Grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
5 tablespoons all purpose flour
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1 1/4 cups whole milk
1/4 cup dry white wine
6 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons (packed) coarsely grated Gruyère cheese (about 6 ounces)
1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese

8 large egg whites

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 400°F. Generously butter one 10-cup soufflé dish or six 1 1/4-cup soufflé dishes; sprinkle with Parmesan cheese to coat. (If using 1 1/4-cup dishes, place all 6 on rimmed baking sheet.) Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add flour, cayenne pepper and nutmeg. Cook without browning until mixture begins to bubble, whisking constantly, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk, then wine. Cook until smooth, thick and beginning to boil, whisking constantly, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Mix yolks, salt and pepper in small bowl. Add yolk mixture all at once to sauce and whisk quickly to blend. Fold in 1 1/4 cups Gruyère cheese and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (cheeses do not need to melt). Using electric mixer, beat whites in large bowl until stiff but not dry. Fold 1/4 of whites into lukewarm soufflé base to lighten. Fold in remaining whites. Transfer soufflé mixture to prepared dish. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons Gruyère cheese.

Place soufflé in oven; reduce heat to 375°F. Bake soufflé until puffed, golden and gently set in center, about 40 minutes for large soufflé (or 25 minutes for small soufflés). Using oven mitts, transfer soufflé to platter and serve immediately.

Recipe adapted from Epicurious

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Buttermilk waffles

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 tsp salt
3 tbsp sugar
2 1/4 tsp baking soda
2 2/3 cups buttermilk*
3 eggs, separated
6 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract

In a large bowl, mix the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, salt, sugar and baking soda. In another bowl combine the buttermilk, egg yolks, oil and vanilla extract.

Preheat your waffle iron and brush it with a little oil. While it's preheating, beat the egg whites with your mixer choice until they form soft peaks. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, mix well, then fold in the egg whites.

Ladle 1/2 to 3/4 cups of batter into your waffle iron. If you don't use enough batter the waffles won't rise; too much batter and it will spill. You'll need to experiment with quantities and cooking times to get your perfect waffle. It also depends on what kind of waffle iron you have.

Keep making waffles until you have used up all the batter. You can serve them as soon as they are ready or keep them warm in a low oven. Freeze all leftovers in individual portions and reheat in a toaster as needed.

* if you don't have buttermilk, you can mix 1 cup of milk with 1 tbsp. vinegar, let stand for a few minutes. increase the amount as required by the recipe.

Original recipe adapted from And then I do the dishes

Friday, August 12, 2011

Cherry Clafoutis

1 to 1 1/2 cups cherries, pitted
4 eggs
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350F and position a rack in the middle. Place all the cherries in a 9-inch round pie tin slightly coated with some melted butter (or cooking spray if you wish).
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until well combined. Add the milk, cream and flour and whisk until smooth. Slowly pour over the cherries, trying not to disturb them too much so to speak. Bake for 30-40 minutes until golden brown.
Serve at room temperature with some powdered sugar dusted on top.

Based on a recipe from Tartelette

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Peanut butter dog treats

2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 cup unsalted natural peanut butter
1 cup skim milk

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Stir together the flour and baking powder; set aside.
In a medium bowl, mix together the peanut butter and milk. Stir in the flour mixture until well blended. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Roll out to 1/4 inch thickness and cut into shapes using cookie cutters. Place 2 inches apart onto the prepared cookie sheets.
Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until lightly brown. Remove from cookie sheets to cool on wire racks.

Chicken paprikash

3 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup water
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt

Chicken paprikash:
1/4 cup butter or olive oil
1 1/2 pounds bone-in chicken pieces, with skin
1 medium onion, chopped
1 1/2 cups water
1 tablespoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup sour cream

Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil over high heat. In a large bowl, mix together the eggs, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1/2 cup of water. Gradually stir in 2 1/2 cups of flour to make a stiff batter. Using two spoons, scoop out some batter with one spoon and use the second to scrap off the spoonful of batter into the boiling water. Repeat until several dumplings are cooking. Cook dumplings for 10 minutes or until they float to the top; then lift from the water and drain in a colander or sieve. Rinse with warm water.

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter and
add onion to skillet. Cook until onions are translucent. Pull skillet off of heat, add paprika and stir to combine. Cook for an addition 2-4 minutes on low heat. Add chicken; cook until lightly browned, turning once. Pour in 1 1/2 cups of water, and season with salt and pepper; cook until chicken is cooked through and juices run clear. Remove chicken from skillet and keep warm.
Stir 2 tablespoons of flour into sour cream; then slowly stir into the onion mixture remaining in the skillet. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly, and cook until thickened.
To serve, add dumplings to the sour cream/onion mixture, then spoon onto dinner plates adding a piece of chicken.