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Sunday, November 17, 2019

Toasted Walnut

This is a scalable recipe. Adhere to the recommended baking time but increase the nuts,oil and seasoning accordingly. Best enjoyed in small batches.

At 160C, the sugar doesn't properly caramelise. To make walnut clusters, bake at a higher temperature (180C) but for a shorter time. Baking time varies according to the starting temperature of the nuts.

Tip: Walnuts go rancid fast so store them in  the chiller until they are ready to be baked.

130g walnut 
1 Tbsp coconut oil
1 Tbsp caster sugar
1 pinch of crushed sea salt

  1. Coat the nuts with the oil.
  2. Add sugar and salt. Toss to coat.
  3. Transfer the nuts to a lined tray.
  4. Baked in a cold oven at 160C. If your nuts are just out from the fridge, bake for 20 minutes. If the nuts are at room temperature to start with, bake for 18 minutes and increase the time by 2 minutes until the walnuts are to your desired crunchiness.
  5. When done, leave the nuts in the oven with the door ajar.
  6. Store only when cool.


Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Quiche (bacon onion cheese)

For lovers of flaky pastry

This recipe took me a good half of the afternoon and gave me lots of washing to do. But after the first mouthful, I knew I had to keep this recipe for an encore bake. There is no running away from the unhealthy things a quiche calls for. At least I used a flour with 25% wholemeal flour. Hopefully my doctor will be pleased with my sincerity.

Credits: KAF (with slight modifications) 

Prepare a 7 inch pan with removable base. A perforated pan is ideal.

Quiche pastry:
90g plain+25% wholemeal flour (Prima)
½ tsp sea salt
120g unsalted butter (chunks)
3 tbsp cold water

Method (Pastry base):
Combine all the above ingredients except water.
Pinch/rub butter into the flour.
Add water. Knead contents until just combined.
Transfer to a sealed bag/container.
Chill for at least 30 minutes. This is crucial for water absorption and suppleness of dough.

Preheat oven to 190C.
Prepare a 7 inch pan with removable base. I use one with perforations.
Roll out the dough to a flat disc on a lightly floured worktop, 9 inch in diameter.
Transfer the dough to the pan, with a slight overhang if you wish.
Use a fork and make holes on the pastry base.
Freeze the pastry for at least 10-15 minutes.
Bake the cold pastry in the preheated oven for 10 minutes.
Remove to cool thoroughly.

While waiting for the baked pastry to cool, proceed to prepare the filling.

Ingredients (Filling):
150g of lean bacon, chopped.
1 medium sized yellow onion, coarsely chopped
20g butter
60g heavy cream (I used whipping cream)
30g milk
3 eggs
Freshly ground pepper
Pinch of maldon or sea salt
60g cheese, coarsely chopped (I used smoked cheddar)

Method (filling):
Pan fry the bacon and onion with butter until bacon is cooked and no moisture is left.
Reserve to cool.
Combine cream, milk, egg,  pepper, salt. Whisk.
Add cheese and cooled bacon mixture.
Reserve. Chill.

Method (final assembly):
Preheat the oven to 190C.
When the oven is ready, ladle the filling into the pie base.
Baked at 190C for 40 minutes.
I like it well cooked. For jiggly center lovers, bake at 190C for 35 minutes.

The onion gives the umami taste like no other. This recipe is  a keeper.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Raisin muffin with coconut

This batch of 6 muffins is a quick bake in between breaks. There is nothing back breaking about this except the washing up after that. The raisins took a couple of hours to soak for  boozed-plumpness. Other than the waiting, the coconut loaded muffins are a breeze to make.

Makes 6 medium muffins, about 100g each


Dry part:
½ cup raisins, soaked in rum and drained
2 Tbsp coconut flakes (thin type)
1 cup wholemeal flour
¾ cup instant oats
1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted preferred
3 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt

Wet part:
1 egg
½ cup coconut sugar
1 cup Greek yogurt
1/3 cup low fat milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
¼ cup coconut butter (liquid form)

Let’s prep the dry components!

Toss raisins in a teaspoon of flour. Retrieve raisins, discard excess flour.
Combine raisins, coconut flakes, wholemeal flour, oats, walnuts, baking powder and salt.
Mix. Set aside.

Next up! The wet component:
In a mixer, combine egg,sugar, yogurt, milk, vanilla extract and liquid coconut butter.
Use a paddle and mix until combined.
Add the dry mix that was prepped as instructed above.
Combine until mixed.

Lay out a baking tray.
Spoon the muffin dough into the muffin cups, ¾ full.
Bake in a preheated oven, at 180C for 28-30mins.
Test with a skewer for doneness.
Cool completely.
To keep, chill in an airtight container, for 2 days max.