Friday, 15 September 2017

More from Milk Bar Life and Momofuku Milk Bar

A new cook book is always a source of inspiration and I really do enjoy trying out new recipes. My collection of cook books is extensive and collected over many years. I happily admit that some have never been cooked from or are purely reference type books and others may have been used once or twice. This year I added two books by Christina Toni to my collection. Momofuku Milk Bar and Milk Bar Life.  Momofuku Milk Bar has an interesting approach that breaks many of the cakes and desserts into components that can be easily swapped around. I love the idea of Layer cakes, perfect for a special occasion. Cookies or biscuits are a staple in my pantry, they generally keep quite well it is so easy to put out a plate for any visitors who pop in.



This is the Apple Pie Layer Cake, page 157 of Momofuku Milk Bar



The recipe lists these components; 1 recipe Barely Brown Butter Cake, 1 recipe Apple Juice Soak,
1 recipe Liquid Cheesecake, 1/2 recipe Pie Crumb, 1 recipe Apple Pie Filling and 1/2 recipe Pie Crumb Frosting.



This is the book


This is another cake from the book, I called it Bananarama and it was adapted from the Banana Layer Cake page 193. 



Chocolate-chocolate cookies page 88


Ritz cookies, page 59, Milk Bar Life


Snickerdoodles, page 58, Milk Bar Life




Monday, 11 September 2017

Waffle On

I will try not to, waffle on that is, but I am having a love affair with waffles at the moment. Sweet, savoury, breakfast, brunch, dessert - all have been covered. It is very easy to adapt the basic waffle mixture and though there is nothing wrong with a plain waffle, there is plenty of scope for some personalising to suit your tastes or whims. A basic waffle iron, the type that cook two waffles that are a square shape can be purchsed cheaply at most department stores and discount outlets. Waffles can be stored in the fridge for a day or two but I prefer to freeze them and then toast/reheat in a toaster.



An indulgent breakfast treat - plain waffles, a little maple syrup, fresh fruit, a dust of cinnamon sugar and some fresh orange zest.

Some more ideas



Basic batter with some blueberries mixed through, all that is needed is a little butter


Or maybe some jam




They are great for brunch or lunch. This version has leftover cooked vegetables mixed into the batter and become 'bubble and squeak ' waffles topped with cream cheese and turmeric and ginger kraut.


Cheese and onion waffles topped with cream cheese, ham, tomato and chopped basil.



Something more substantial, vegetable waffle topped with cold roast beef, salad and some lightly spiced mayonnaise.


A savoury waffle, cheese an onion topped with mushrooms and tomatoes
























A pile of 'breakfast' waffles, choc full of oats and seeds and ready for the freezer. A delicious alternative to the morning toast. Note the odd one out - the batter made into a pancake.























Waffles

Waffle Batter

2 cups plain flour*
3 teaspoons baking powder
125 g butter, melted
2 eggs**
1 ½ cups milk

*Substitute some wholemeal flour for some of the plain but no more than 1 cup

**A lighter waffle can be achieved by separating the egg whites, beating them with a whisk or electric beater and then folding back into the waffle batter.
Savoury
Add any of the following to the basic batter
1 cup strong grated tasty cheese
1 cup ham, cooked bacon, pancetta cut into small pieces
1 cup leftover cooked vegetables
Chopped spinach – I use frozen, defrost and squeeze out
 Combine as you like

Sweet
Optional –
Add 1 tablespoon of caster sugar to the batter
Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract to the batter

Breakfast
Add some oats and seeds such as sunflower and pepitas, approximately 1 cup


Method
Combine the flour, baking powder, eggs, melted butter and most of the milk in a bowl and mix well. The batter should be smooth and thick. Add a little more milk if necessary. If batter seems to runny add a little more flour. 

A lighter waffle can be achieved by separating the egg whites, beating them with a whisk or electric beater and then folding back into the waffle batter.

If making variations add them to the basic batter.

Follow the instruction for your waffle machine or

Heat the waffle iron and brush with a little melted butter or cooking spray.

Ladle batter into the greased waffle compartments, do not overfill and smooth with a wet spoon or spatula.

Close the waffle maker and cook until waffles are golden brown

Remove waffles from the waffle iron. Serve immediately or cool on a wire rack. Cooked waffles reheat in a toaster very well/

Serve with toppings of your choice.

And a Demonstration on How to Cook

























Ladle some waffle batter into each compartment.

























Use a wet spoon or spatula to quickly spread the waffle batter. Close the waffle maker and cook until golden brown

























Remove waffles and serve. If not eaten immediately cool on a rack and then freeze or refrigerate.


 


Sunday, 3 September 2017

Afternoon Tea for the Workers

This weekend I visited Coryule, a magnificent old property at Curlewis on the picturesque Bellarine Peninsula. It was opened to launch the season of Open Gardens Victoria. The property was originally owned and developed by the Misses Drysdale and Newcomb and of significant historical interest. It was such a treat to be able to see both the house and garden.


The house is being painstakingly restored



The house and gardens are extensive, occupying only a fraction of vast property. 













The property has extensive vegetable gardens, and a postage or kitchen garden close to the kitchen.



An opening requires a lot of organisation and some last minute 'primping', raking of the stone and gravel paths and placing of the signs explaining the various features of the gardens.


The signs are extremely informative


I was asked to provide afternoon tea for the workers.



A selection of simple, family style treats. Lumberjack cake, tangelo cake, gluten free brownies, lamingtons and some salted peanut crisps / cookies.



The Peanut Crisps were adapted from a recipe in this book.


I love these sort of cookbooks, nothing fancy but full of simple, easily made and mostly inexpensive recipes.


This is the recipe



I usd this recipe as a starting point and made a few changes.


Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Braised Lamb with Beetroot and Marsala

Some would think the lamb and beetroot an unlikely combination, however, the earthy flavour and colour of the beetroot combine well with the Marsala wine and lamb. I quite like the beetroot in small dice, although, others in the family prefer it grated. It is quicker to cut it up but easily grated in a food processor. Serve as you would any casserole, accompanied with mashed potato, rice or other grain.




Lamb Braised with Beetroot and Marsala

1 leg of lamb, boned
6 -8 cloves of garlic or less if you prefer, crushed
1 tablespoon oil
2 red onions, small dice or thinly sliced
2 large beetroot, peeled 1 bay leaf
Freshly ground black pepper

2 cups stock or water and stock cube
1/1 cup marsala wine
Balsamic vinegar

To serve
Chopped parsley

Method
Cut lamb into 6 -8 large pieces.

Peel beetroot, grate or finely dice.

Heat the oil and brown the lamb. It can be cooked on the stovetop or in the oven or an electric frypan.

Reduce heat, add onion and garlic and cook until onions start to soften.

Add beetroot, stock, bay leaf, and a generous grind of black pepper. Cover and reduce heat. Cook slowly* for about 1 1/2 hours or longer.  Check from time to time and stir.  The stock/liquid needs to reduce to about half by the end of the cooking time. If too dry add a little water or stock and if too liquid remove the lid, increase heat and reduce the sauce. If meat is very tender remove and then reduce the sauce.

*Adjust cooking time to suit cooking method. Oven 150 deg C or simmer in a large pan on the stovetop or an electric frypan. Can also be cooked in a slow cooker/crockpot, follow the instructions for casseroles or stews.

Check the flavour of the sauce; add some balsamic vinegar to sharpen and a little salt if necessary.

Garnish with chopped parsley if desired,






Friday, 25 August 2017

Baker's Dozen

This is one of my earlier quilts. I made more than twenty years ago with Laura Ashley fabrics to coordinate with drapes made with the navy blue paisley. It was used for awhile and then replaced with other quilts, I still have the curtains. My friend Marion has it in her spare room. The pattern is designed around a central block set diagonally, with subsequent blocks forming rows out from the centre.


I assume that Baker's Dozen refers the mixture of blocks and pieced blocks, although I seem to recall thirteen rows.

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Salted Peanut Cookies

 My circle of diners are fairly divided on the idea of peanut cookies, there are the lovers and the loathers and even amongst the lovers the requirements are just as varied with some liking lots of peanuts to others wanting the dough to be sweet. These are not too sweet, not too salty and perfectly peanutty. Not something that I make often as I tend to like them a lot!



Salted Peanut Cookies

125 g butter (soft)
3/4 cup caster sugar
2 tablespoons peanut butter
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate soda


2 cups flour
1 cup salted peanuts, lightly chopped

1 cup salted peanuts to decorate
Salt flakes to decorate


Method
Cream (beat) butter, sugar and peanut butter until light and fluffy.  This can be done in a food processor.

Beat in egg, salt, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda.

Stir in flour and chopped peanuts and mix until well combined.  If using the food processor use the pulse action.

Roll mixture into small balls. Flatten lightly with your fingers as you press into the reserved peanuts

Place cookies onto trays lined with non stick baking parchment / silicone or lightly greased trays. Sprinkle each cookie with a few salt flakes.

Bake at 170 deg C until light golden brown. Approximately 10 - 12 minutes.


Saturday, 19 August 2017

Tangelo Loaf Cake - Quick Mix / Gluten Free

This is a simple cake to make and the recipe easily adapted for most citrus fruits which is good for those of us with trees and a bumper crop. I used Meyer lemons which are sweeter lemon as  these are what needed to be used first. It can be made with butter or a combination of butter and oil and probably all oil although I have tried this. The recipe work well with gluten free flour which has a slightly different texture to one that is made with regular flour. My gluten free testers thought it was delicious. I have also included the non gluten free version made with lemons. The recipes are identical with the exception of the flour, gluten free flour absorbs more liquid so does not use quite as much as if using regular flour. This recipe was adapted from a recipe given to me by my neighbour Mandy.



Tangelo Loaf Cake
Quick mix, gluten free
Ingredients
1 Tangelo*(large, approximately 300g)
185 g soft butter or 1/3 cup canola oil and 80 g butter
3 eggs
1 cup caster sugar
3 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 cups Gluten free plain flour

Method
Preheat oven to 160 deg C, grease and line base /sides of a loaf pa
Remove the ends from the tangelo, cut into quarters and then remove skin. If there is a lot of white pith on the skin you may like to remove it.
Place the tangelo flesh, peel and sugar in a food processor or use a stick blender and process until pulpy and the skin is broken up into fine flecks.
Add the butter and process again
Add the eggs and give a quick quiz, then add the baking powder and gluten free flour. Pulse to mix.
Pour batter into the prepared tin. Bake until cake is set and starting to shrink away from the sides of the tin, approximately 45 minutes.
Ice with lemon or orange icing or a drizzle with a watered down icing or glaze

*Use lemons, mandarins or oranges, keeping the prepared weight about the same.





the non gluten free version
Lemon Loaf Cake
Quick mix
Ingredients
2-3 Lemons *( approximately 300g)
185 g soft butter or 1/3 cup canola oil and 80 g butter
3 eggs
1 cup caster sugar
3 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups plain flour

Method
Preheat oven to 160 deg C, grease and line base /sides of a loaf pa
Remove the ends from the tangelo, cut into quarters and then remove skin. If there is a lot of white pith on the skin you may like to remove it.
Place the tangelo flesh, peel and sugar in a food processor or use a stick blender and process until pulpy and the skin is broken up into fine flecks.
Add the butter and process again
Add the eggs and give a quick quiz, then add the baking powder and gluten free flour. Pulse to mix.
Pour batter into the prepared tin. Bake until cake is set and starting to shrink away from the sides of the tin, approximately 45 minutes.
Ice with lemon or orange icing or a drizzle with a watered down icing or glaze
*Use lemons, mandarins or oranges, keeping the prepared weight about the same
//