Advertisements
RSS Feed

Tag Archives: pecans

Jamie Oliver Smoothie Pancakes with Berries, Banana, Yoghurt and Nuts

IMG_8581

IMG_8574

Super food, super easy and super good! Jamie’s latest book Everyday Super Food is a bit of a revelation, crammed full of beautiful, colourful, easy recipes that are really healthy.

The research, the nutritional information, and the carefully planned and written recipes make this book a must-read and a must-cook. I’m big on flavour, and what I’ve cooked so far is bursting with it …I can’t  wait to cook more!

If you love cooking, love really tasty food, and would like to feel that you are doing your bit to eat healthily, then get Everday Super Food. It’s common sense, not faddish, and do-able!

I made Smoothie Pancakes with Berries, Banana, Yoghurt and Nuts today. I went for blueberries, next time I’ll try raspberries. I didn’t realize till I was making the recipe that there was no sugar – the blueberries are sweet enough – even for the sweet tooth of this quirky writer! The drizzle of honey on the pancakes themselves when serving adds that little extra sweetness which is nice. Here is Jamie’s recipe very slightly tweaked.

Ingredients

320g blueberries or raspberries

1 ripe banana

170ml semi-skimmed milk

1 large free-range egg

250g wholemeal self raising flour

To serve

4 tbs natural yoghurt

Sprinkle of ground cinnamon

30g mixed unsalted nuts, chopped

Drizzle of honey

Method

Blitz half the berries, peeled banana, milk, egg and flour in a food processor or blender to make a smooth pancake batter. Fold in the remaining berries. Place a large non-stick frying pan on a medium high heat. When hot, put some batter into the frying pan to make large pancakes or small ones. I went for smallish. Cook for a couple of minutes on each side, or until crisp and browned. Jamie suggests flipping them for an additional 30 seconds each side to ensure they are super crispy. This seemed to work for me.

You can serve whole, or slice the pancakes in half so you can see the fruit. Serve with a spoonful or two of yoghurt, a sprinkling of cinnamon, some chopped nuts and a drizzle of honey over the whole lot. Delish.

IMG_8606

 

 

Advertisements

Pecan Maple Sticky Buns

IMG_7815

Here is another venture into the world of sticky buns, cinnamon scrolls and brown sugar sweet treats. I love my bread making, and I am pretty keen on making enriched dough at the moment.

This recipe is my take on Sticky Buns from the Great British Bakeoff and the inimitable James Morton’s Cinnamon Buns.

It’s an enriched dough filled with brown sugar, butter and cinnamon, and topped with MORE brown sugar, butter, maple syrup and pecans!

James Morton cooks his buns in a casserole dish or pot such as a Le Creuset, as the heavy sided baking dish creates softer buns. He’s right – it’s the way to go for beautiful soft unctuous buns, so I recommend you try this baking method. Whatever you bake your buns in, make sure that the dish or pan has a rim, as the topping might flow over during cooking.

Ingredients

Dough

250g plain white flour

250g strong white flour

8g table salt

7g instant yeast

100g sourdough starter (optional)

50g caster sugar

280g milk, warmed until tepid

1 free-range egg, at room temperature

50g unsalted butter

Filling

50g unsalted butter

75g brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

Topping

100g butter (salt reduced or salted is fine for that “salted caramel” flavour)

2 tbs maple syrup

100g pecan pieces (walnuts work just as well)

Method

Place the flour, salt, yeast,  sourdough starter if using, sugar, tepid milk, egg and cinnamon into a large bowl and mix them together by hand or you can use an electric mixer with a dough hook. Knead by hand or in the mixer about for 10 minutes.

Melt the butter and add to your dough. Mix it in by hand or use a machine until completely combined. Cover the bowl (I use a disposable shower cap but cling film is fine) and leave the dough to rest for 60-90 minutes at room temperature, or overnight in the fridge, until it has grown to roughly double its original size.

Turn your dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll it out into a big, long rectangle. The rectangle should be about 20cm wide and up to a metre long. Melt the butter and brush over dough. Sprinkle the dough all over with brown sugar and then cinnamon.

Roll up the dough along its long edge into as tight a cylinder you can get, but be careful as the dough is quite fragile. Slice this cylinder into 6-9 roughly equal pieces using a knife.

For the topping, process the butter, brown sugar and maple syrup until thoroughly mixed in food processor. Grease a large lidded casserole dish and spread the mixture evenly over the base of the dish. Scatter the chopped nuts over the base of the dish and gently press in.

Arrange the buns cut end down in the casserole dish. Place the lid on the casserole and leave to rise for another hour at room temperature, then check to see that buns have risen.

IMG_7798

30 minutes before baking, preheat your oven to 180 degrees C fan forced. Put the lid back on the casserole and place in the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes with the lid on and 10 minutes with the lid off.

Remove from the oven and run a knife around the inside of the dish to loosen the buns.

IMG_7804

Leave for 3-4 minutes for the bubbling to subside – no longer as the caramel will set.

Carefully invert the dish onto a plate with a rim, again to stop the topping spilling over. Lift off the baking dish. The buns will be sitting up beautifully covered in the lovely caramel topping!

IMG_7808 (1)

 

 

Blueberry and Marmalade Cake with Sugared Pecans

IMG_5849

I am revisiting a recipe I posted in 2013. It’s a moist butter cake made even more moist by the addition of sour cream and marmalade.

Blueberries and pecans through the cake give both fruitiness and crunch.

You could easily substitute blackberries for blueberries and either walnuts or almonds for the pecans.

Ingredients
125 gms softened butter

3/4 cup caster sugar

1 tsp vanilla paste

2 eggs

1/2 cup sour cream

2-3 tbls citrus marmalade

1 3/4 cups self-raising flour

1/2 cup milk

1/2 tsp bicarabonate of soda

1 1/2 cups blueberries

1/4 cup roughly chopped pecans

1/3 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup caster sugar

To serve: a handful of blueberries, a sprinkling of caster sugar (optional) and thick cream.

Method

Preheat oven to 160 degrees C or 150 degrees C fan-forced. Grease a 20cm spring form tin and line base with baking paper.

Cream butter, caster sugar, vanilla paste and eggs in a food processor until thick and pale. Beat in sour cream and cumquat marmalade, reserving a good teaspoonful, then add alternately SR flour and milk in 3 batches. Combine the bicarbonate of soda, remaining marmalade and 1 tsp water in a small bowl, then pulse into the cake mixture.

Spoon into the cake tin using a spatula, then scatter the blueberries (reserving a handful), and chopped pecans over the batter. Lastly sprinkle over the brown sugar, making sure the nuts are well covered. The nuts will caramelise nicely during baking.

Bake for 45 minutes, then gently open oven door and scatter remaining blueberries and caster sugar over cake. This is to ensure that some of the blueberries sit on top of the cake – some will have sunk into the mixture during the initial cooking.

Close oven door and cook for a further 15 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Cool the cake completely in the tin before unmoulding.

Serve plain or with whipped cream, creme fraiche or sour cream.

IMG_5850

 

Christmas Rocky Road

IMG_5633

I love Rocky Road and I make it quite often, using different kinds of chocolate, glace fruit and nuts depending on who I’m making it for or what’s in the store cupboard.

This recipe is based on Nigella’s Christmas Rocky Road. I substituted ginger nut biscuits for amaretti biscuits and used a mixture of brazil nuts, cashews and pecans. It’s an “adult” version  – more dark chocolate than milk, ginger biscuits and no peanuts!

Ingredients
250 gms dark chocolate
150 gms milk chocolate
175 gms soft butter
4 tbls golden syrup
200 gms ginger nut biscuits
150 gms brazil nuts, cashews and pecans
150 gms red glace cherries
125 gms mini marshmallows or whole marshamllows cut in half
Edible glitter  and icing sugar to decorate

Method
Chop the chocolate into small pieces and then put into a heavy-based saucepan to melt with the butter and syrup over a gentle heat.
Put the biscuits into a freezer bag and bash them with a rolling pin to get big and little pieces. Put the mixed nuts into another freezer bag and bash them to  get different sized nut pieces.
Take the saucepan off the heat, and add the crushed biscuits and nuts, whole glacé cherries and marshmallows,  turning carefully to coat everything with the chocolate.
Tip into a foil tray 236mm x 296mm / 9¼” x 12″.  Smooth the top,  not too much as the rough look is what you want.
Refrigerate until firm enough to cut, at least 2 hours, the longer the better.  Remove the set Rocky Road from the foil tray  and cut into squares or slabs – whatever you prefer.
To decorate, sprinkle the top of the Rocky Road with edible glitter –  I used gold.  Dust with icing sugar for a snowy effect. Or you can just leave unadorned – the squares are pretty enough on their own.

IMG_7802

 

 

Jamie Oliver’s Hummingbird Cake

IMG_5378

IMG_7644

This has to be the best cake: it’s super easy, looks spectacular and is really, really delish!

I have been keen to make this cake from Jamie Oliver’s great new book Comfort Food. It’s a special occasion cake and the special occasion it was made for, was the (early) birthday celebration for Katrina, friend and colleague, newly wed and faithful follower of this blog.

Here is the website page: http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/recipe/hummingbird-cake/

I love this book and thoroughly recommend it – if you haven’t acquired a Jamie book yet, this is a lovely one with which to start your library.

Here is the recipe “un-tweaked”as Jamie’s instructions are accurate and really easy to follow.

Jamie suggests serving “in a bluebell wood on a fallen tree”; my garden, in leafy Rozelle, with a riot of over grown spring flowers, was my setting. And there was even a humming bird…

IMG_7652

IMG_7673

Ingredients

250 ml olive oil, plus extra for greasing

350 g self-raising flour

1 level teaspoon ground cinnamon

350 g golden caster sugar

4 medium-sized very ripe bananas

1 x 425 g tin of pineapple chunks

2 large free-range eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

50 g pecans

For the icing:

400 g icing sugar

150 g unsalted butter, (at room temperature)

200 g cream cheese

2 limes

For the brittle:

100 g caster sugar

50 g pecans

Method

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Grease and line two 23cm round cake tins. Sift the flour and cinnamon into a mixing bowl, then add the sugar and a large pinch of sea salt. Peel the bananas and mash them up with a fork in another bowl. Drain and finely chop the pineapple and add to the bananas with the oil, eggs and vanilla extract. Mix until combined, then fold into the dry mixture until smooth. Finely chop the pecans and gently fold in, then divide the batter evenly between your prepared tins. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until risen, golden and the sponges spring back when touched lightly in the centre. Run a knife around the edge of the tins, then leave to cool for 10 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Meanwhile, to make the icing, sift the icing sugar into a free-standing electric mixer, add the butter and beat until pale and creamy. Add the cream cheese, finely grate in the zest of 1 lime and add a squeeze of juice, then beat until just smooth – it’s really important not to over-mix it. Keep in the fridge until needed. To make a brittle topping, place the caster sugar and a splash of water in a non-stick frying pan on a medium heat. Shake flat and don’t stir it, just swirl the pan occasionally until dissolved and lightly golden. Add the pecans and a pinch of salt, spoon around to coat, and when nicely golden, pour onto a sheet of oiled greaseproof paper to set (check out the how-to video below). Once cool, smash up to a dust (you’ll need about half to top the cake – save the rest for sprinkling over ice cream.

To assemble the cake, place one sponge on a cake stand and spread with half the icing. Top with the other sponge, spread over the rest of the icing, then grate over the zest of the remaining lime. Scatter over the brittle dust and decorate with a few edible flowers, such as violas, borage or herb flowers, if you feel that way inclined. With a cup of tea on the side, this will make everyone who eats it extremely happy. Serve in a bluebell wood on a fallen tree, as you do.

 

IMG_5435

 

 

 

 

Salted Praline Ice Cream

IMG_5395

This is an incredibly easy recipe to make – no-churn ice cream in minutes, plus  of course the obligatory freezing time!

Whipped cream, egg yolks and egg whites, sugar and flavourings and you have the basis for a scrumptious ice cream. In this case, the flavour is salted nutty caramel in the form of crushed praline. The sea salt offsets the toffee sweetness really well.

Ingredients

2 free-range eggs, separated
7 tbsp caster sugar, divided in half
1 tbsp boiling water
1 1/2 cups cream
Pecan praline, crushed into small and larger pieces

Method

Line a medium sized plastic container with cling film or 4 ramekins or small molds.

Beat the egg whites until frothy then add  3 1/2 tblsp of sugar and beat until the mixture is stiff and glossy and of a meringue like consistency. Remove the mixture to another bowl. Using the original bowl – no need to clean –  beat the egg yolks, remaining 3 1/2 tblsp  of sugar and boiling water until the mixture is really thick and pale.

In a third bowl whip the cream till it holds soft peaks.

Gently fold first the egg yolk mixture into the cream, then the egg white mixture, being careful not to knock too much air from the mixture. Lastly fold in the crushed praline pieces.

Pour the ice cream mixture into the container or ramekins, and freeze for 6 hours or overnight. Remove from the freezer, and gently unmold onto a plate, peeling off the plastic  wrap.

Serve as individual ice creams or as scoopfuls from the larger mixture. Decorate with shards of praline.

IMG_5455

 Pecan Praline

Heat 1/2 cup of caster sugar in a heavy bottomed saucepan over a medium heat. Be careful not to stir the sugar – tilt the saucepan to help melt the sugar. Cook for several minutes until the sugar turns a deep caramel tea colour and take off the heat. It’s a fine line between toffee that’s cooked and toffee that’s burnt! *

Add 1/2 tsp of sea salt flakes and pour onto a baking tray lined with baking paper. Quickly scatter over a handful of chopped pecans.

Leave to cool and harden. When completely cold, place the praline in a ziplock bag and bash into pieces with a mallet or rolling pin. Make sure you have small fragments, larger pieces, and some large shards for decoration.

IMG_5504

*Tip for cleaning the toffee saucepan: fill the pan with water and heat on the stove top till just boiling. Turn off heat and leave for a few minutes – the hardened toffee should hopefully dissolve making the pan easy to clean.

 

 

 

 

Blueberry, Cumquat and Pecan Cake – Two Ways

IMG_8035IMG_8120

I revisited this cake made last year which is based on an Annabel Langbein recipe.

I made it two ways, my original recipe tweaked a little and a vegan version.

Below is the link to the original recipe:

https://thequirkandthecool.com/2013/07/14/blueberry-and-cumquat-cake-with-sugared-pecans/

Original Version

My “tweaks” were to use a couple of tablespoons of preserved cumquats instead of jam, as I had run out of cumquat jam. I blitzed the cumquats pretty thoroughly so as not to have big chunks in the cake. When adding the final teaspoon of cumquat preserve, I added the syrup rather than the fruit.

Here is the link to preserved cumquats: https://thequirkandthecool.com/2013/08/26/cumquats-in-sugar-syrup/

I also served the cake with lots of fresh berries and more preserved cumquats.

IMG_3767

Vegan Version

This is a similar recipe to my vegan chocolate cake, minus the cocoa. I also made a plain vanilla cake as well. I used my fancy Nordic ware molds which I love.

IMG_3776IMG_3761

Ingredients


175 gms self raising flour

3 level tsps baking powder

100 gms rapadura or other unrefined sugar* + 1/8 cup

125 mls vegetable oil

325 mls cold water

I/2 cup blueberries

1/8 cup chopped pecans




Method

Preheat oven to 170 degrees C.
  Grease 20 cm cake tin or 4-6 small fancy molds with oil spray.

Place all the ingredients  (except the blueberries and pecans and additional sugar) in a food processor in the order given and whizz. 
Place mixture into the greased tin or molds.

Scatter the blueberries and chopped pecans over the batter. Lastly sprinkle over 1/8 cup rapadura sugar, making sure the nuts are well covered.

Bake for 30 minutes for the cake tin, 15 minutes for the molds, in the pre-heated oven.

Cool for 5 minutes before gently turning out onto a wire rack.

%d bloggers like this: