Mrs Balls, eat your heart out!

So a while back I mentioned that one of the things I missed from South Africa was Mrs Balls Chutney

While you can get Mrs Balls in Israel it comes at a premium since it’s a specialty import. 

So I decided to make my own. And it’s delicious!

For some reason my recipe card add on isnt working so please excuse the ugly recipe below…

Fruit Chutney Recipe

A traditional South African fruit chutney.

**The recipe requires that you leave the fruit soaking in water over night, the times below do not include the soak time*

Prep time: 20 minutes                                 Cook time:  2 hours

Yield: 6-8 small jars

Ingredients

  • 500g dried pears
  • 500g dried peach
  • 500g dried apples (I didnt have apple but I did have mango so I substituted)
  • 500g dates
  • 500g sultanas 
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 cups vinegar
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon tumeric
  • 1 teaspoon sweet chili mix

Method

  • Roughly (or finely) chop all the fruit. 
  • Place in a bowl and cover with the water. 
  • Leave over night. 
  • The next day place the fruit in a large heavy bottomed pot. 
  • Add all the remaining ingredients to the pot and mix well. 
  • Bring to the boil. 
  • Lower the heat and simmer for 2 hours. 
  • Bottle the mixture into clean glass jars while still hot. 
  • You can eat the chutney straight away but it’s better to let it mature for a few weeks (6-8 is recommended). 

Notes

  • This time I couldn’t find any dried apple in the store so I left it out. Basically you can add or leave out any of the fruits depending on availability or the taste you are looking for.
  • If you don’t have rubber sealed lids on your jars, then place some wax paper between the jar and the lid before sealing.
  • You can eat the chutney straight away but it’s better to let it mature for a few weeks (6-8 is recommended).

Its not just banana bread

So I mentioned that I bought a stand mixer the other day. Well, it arrived and so far I have made 2 batches of challah using the dough hook (NEVER kneading dough again!) as well as a batch of cinnamon muffins and on Friday I made an apple and banana bread/muffin recipe.

I have absolutely no idea what prompted me to add apples into the mix but I’m glad I did. They were amazing!

Apple Banana Bread
Yummy fresh apple and banana bread.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. 3 large grated or finely chopped apples (I used 2 green and 1 red and left the skin on)
  2. 3 large ripe or overripe bananas, mashed
  3. 2 cups sugar (I used sugar replacement)
  4. 3 cups flour
  5. 1 teaspoon baking soda
  6. 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  7. 2 large eggs
  8. 2/3 cup of oil
  9. 2 teaspoons vanilla (I didn't have so didn't add and it was absolutely fine)
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 180C and grease 2 loaf pans or like I did, 1 loaf pan and 2-3 muffin trays (12-18 muffins).
  2. Add all the ingredients into a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer.
  3. Mix well, ensuring all the flour is incorporated.
  4. Separate batter into the desired pans and place in the oven.
  5. For loafs, bake for about 1 hour.
  6. For muffins bake for between 30 minutes and 45 minutes.
Notes
  1. The original recipe called for half a cup chopped nuts and half a cup raisins. I had neither on hand so didn't add them and the recipe came out fine. You could also add craisins or even chocolate chips to this recipe and it would be delicious.
Adapted from Food.com
Adapted from Food.com
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/

Soup weather

Winter, the season for soup.

So far I’ve made a pot of chicken soup and a pot of zucchini soup (requested by the boy child).

I wasnt sure about the zucchini soup. I like it roasted or as zucchini noodles but soup…?

So I searched the interwebs and found a few recipes but none really appealed to me. What did appeal to me were the recipes that had garlic in them.

So armed with a list of various recipes, a bag of zucchini, a garlic bulb and my spice rack I created my own recipe.

img_6470

 

Zucchini Garlic Soup
A mild and creamy zucchini soup.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. Oil for frying
  2. 4 large zucchini, peeled and sliced
  3. 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped (more or less per your taste)
  4. 1 red onion, diced (most recipes called for white onion, I only had red and it was perfect)
  5. 4 cups of water or vegetable stock
  6. Salt and pepper to taste
  7. Herbs, I used basil and rosemary
  8. Ginger powder
Instructions
  1. Soak your peeled and sliced zucchini is a bowl of salted water.
  2. While that is soaking, in a large, heavy bottomed pot, lightly fry your onion and garlic until the onion is soft and translucent.
  3. Drain your zucchini and add to the pot.
  4. Heat until the zucchini starts to soften.
  5. Add your water or stock and bring to the boil.
  6. Once boiling, lower to a simmer and add your salt, pepper, herbs and ginger to taste. If you are using water, add more, if you are using stock add less.
  7. Simmer, partially covered, for 45 minutes.
Notes
  1. Serve hot with slices of olive bread.
  2. This soup has a very subtle flavour. Next time I will probably add a bit of sweet chili powder for a bit of a kick.
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/

Scottish oatcakes of yumminess!

As you know, Paul is diabetic, and I am always trying to find yummy sugar free food to bake or cook for him.

Paul tends to eat a bowl of oats with fresh fruit in the mornings but its getting boring. I work with a lot of UK products and last week, Scottish oatcakes kept popping up. So I googled and found a variety of recipes and yesterday I tried out a simple Scottish oatcake recipe.

These biscuits can be used in place of bread. Spread some butter, honey, jam or cheese on top or just have them plain right out the oven!

Scottish Oatcakes
Yields 16
A quick to make, yummy biscuit. Can be served with butter, cheese, jam or as is.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
25 min
Ingredients
  1. 250g oats, whizzed in the blender until they become a flour consistency
  2. 25g butter, melted (I used margarine so they are dairy free, you could also use oil)
  3. 1/2 teaspoon bicarb of soda
  4. pinch of salt
  5. 150ml hot (not boiling) water
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 180C.
  2. Set aside a bit of the oatmeal flour for later.
  3. Mix all the ingredients together until you have a rough dough ball.
  4. If its too sticky add some more oats, if its too dry add a dash of water.
  5. Dust your surface with the oatmeal flour you set aside earlier.
  6. Roll out the dough about 2-3mm thick.
  7. Take a clean glass and cut out rounds.
  8. You can re-roll the scraps until there is nothing left.
  9. Place rounds on a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.
Notes
  1. These were delicious fresh out the oven with a bit of butter.
  2. If you are not using them right away you can warm them up in the oven for a few minutes before serving although they are just as delicious cold.
  3. Store them in an airtight container.
Adapted from Penny's Recipes
Adapted from Penny's Recipes
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/

Pumpkin!

My mommy in law sent me a recipe for pumpkin bread and last night I finally managed to make it.

The original recipe called for 3 cups of sugar and white flour. Since Paul is diabetic I switched things around a bit so he could also enjoy it.

When I started writing up this post I realised that I had only taken a quick picture of the breads before going into the oven.

bread

The loaf I brought to work went so quickly I didn’t have a chance to take a picture either. So I asked Paul to take a quick picture and send it to me.

Why I was surprised when he didn’t just send a quick cell phone pic is beyond me. I know better.

What follows is the gorgeous styled photo shoot he did.

Baked pumpkin bread 

Baked pumpkin bread 

Baked pumpkin bread 

Baked pumpkin bread 

Baked pumpkin bread 

And now for the recipe.

Pumpkin Bread
Yields 2
Yummy, sweet pumpkin bread
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups cooked, mashed pumpkin
  2. 2 cups sugar replacement (original recipe calls for 3 cups sugar)
  3. 1 cup oil
  4. 4 eggs
  5. 2/3 cup water
  6. 1 and 1/3 cup white flour
  7. 2 cups wholewheat flour (original recipe was all white flour)
  8. 1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt
  9. 1 teaspoon nutmeg (I didn't have so I left it out)
  10. 1 teaspoon cinnamon (I didn't actually measure, I just poured a whole lot in)
  11. 2 teaspoons baking soda
  12. 1 cup chopped nuts (I used almonds since that's what I had on hand)
Instructions
  1. Heat your oven to 180C.
  2. Prepare 2 bread tins.
  3. Cook your pumpkin and then drain and mash it.
  4. Add all the ingredients to a large mixing bowl and mix until well combined.
  5. Split the mixture between the 2 tins.
  6. I kept a little back and used my 4 teeny tiny little miniature bread tins, just for fun.
  7. Bake for between 45 minutes to an hour. I stuck with Hilary's suggestion of an hour (I put the mini tins in for the last 20 minutes).
Notes
  1. Enjoy hot out the oven with melted butter.
  2. Its equally as good, cold the next day.
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/

Dreamy Zucchini

I’ve been ordering organic veggie boxes every two weeks from Maggie’s Garden for a few months now. 

One of the things I love about the boxes is that I get to try out veggies that I wouldn’t normally buy. Like kohlrabi and zucchini. 

I’ve received zucchini a few times now and every time I’ve grilled or fried them and then thought to myself, ‘That was nice but why didn’t I make zucchini bread?’

So this time I specifically ordered a kilo of zucchini so I could make bread. I searched for a sugar free recipe so that Paul could eat it too and what I came up with was delicious!

zucc

Diabetic friendly zucchini bread
sugar free, whole wheat zucchini bread
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 eggs
  2. 1 1/4 cup canola oil
  3. 1 1/2 cup 'spoon for spoon' sweetener
  4. 1/4 cup water
  5. 1 tsp vanilla
  6. 2 cup grated unpeeled raw zucchini
  7. 2 cup whole wheat flour
  8. 2 tsp baking soda
  9. 1 tsp baking powder
  10. 1 tsp salt
  11. 1 tsp cinnamon
  12. 1 cup chopped walnuts
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 180C.
  2. Beat eggs, oil, sweetener, water and vanilla until light and thick.
  3. Fold zucchini, then dry ingredients, into wet batter until just blended; add nuts.
  4. Pour into greased pan(s).
  5. Bake for 45 minutes.
  6. Let cool for 10 minutes before slicing.
Notes
  1. This was really yummy served warm with melted butter. It was equally yummy served cold.
Adapted from Just a Pinch
Adapted from Just a Pinch
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/

No knead wholewheat artisanal bread

The #BestBossEver sent me a link on Facebook to this recipe and I knew I had to try it for Shabbat tonight. 

Although the actual preparation takes all of 5 minutes, you do need to prepare your dough a minimum of 8 hours before you want to bake it. 

So I made my dough last night before I went to bed. It literally took 5 minutes. This afternoon I baked it, which took about 20 minutes to heat the oven and let the dough rest after shaping and a further 45 minutes to bake. 

image

Here’s the recipe. 

No knead wholewheat artisanal bread
Easy peasy bread
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
45 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup white flour
  2. 2 cups wholewheat flour
  3. 1 teaspoon salt
  4. 1/2 teaspoon yeast
  5. 1 and 1/2 cups warm water
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl mix all ingredients together with a wooden spoon.
  2. Mixture will be shaggy looking.
  3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap not too tightly (I then covered the bowl with a towel).
  4. Leave at room temperature for a minimum of 8 hours but up to 24 hours.
  5. The dough will have doubled in size and look bubbly.
  6. Turn oven to 180C and place a high sided dish into the oven to get warm.
  7. Turn the dough onto a floured surface and shape into a round.
  8. Set aside until the oven is ready.
  9. Once ready, cut an 'x' into the bread and gently transfer to the hot dish.
  10. Do NOT burn yourself!
  11. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes covered.
  12. Uncover the dish and bake for a further 15 minutes.
  13. Let cool before slicing.
Adapted from It's Always Autumn
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/

The French know what they are doing.

Part of my last organic veggie order from Maggie’s Garden was about 15 small brown onions. I immediately thought of making a French onion soup.

Part of what intrigued me about this soup is that it is traditionally served with a piece of toasted crusty bread with cheese melted on top. Ummmm, sourdough bread anyone?

image

Yiddisha French Onion Soup
Serves 4
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 tablespoon oil
  2. 2 tablespoons butter (margarine if you want it to be parve)
  3. 2 cups thinly sliced onions
  4. Salt & pepper to taste
  5. 1 teaspoon thyme (I used oregano since that's what I had)
  6. 1 bay leaf
  7. 1/2 cup dry sherry ( this is where the yiddisha comes in, I used sweet kiddish wine)
  8. 6 cups beef stock (a parve beef stock cube in boiling water if you keep kosher)
  9. Thick slices of crusty bread (hello sourdough!)
  10. Lots of sliced or grated Gruyere or Swiss cheese (here in Israel I used sliced Emek cheese)
Instructions
  1. In a heavy bottomed pot, melt the oil and butter and add the onions.
  2. Season with the salt, pepper and herbs and cook for about 15 minutes storing often.
  3. When the onions have caramalised, add the bay leaf and the sherry/kiddish wine and stir.
  4. Add the stock and bring the soup to a boil.
  5. In the mean time, heat the grill in your oven.
  6. Place the bread slices on a baking sheet and top with slices of cheese.
  7. Place under the grill until the cheese is melted an bubbling.
  8. Dish up the soup into bowls and either float a slice of cheesy bread on top or serve the bread on the side.
Adapted from Rachael Ray via foodnetwork.com
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/

Chanukah Sameach!

The festival of light. And fried things. Well, of the miracle of 1 days oil lasting 8.

So we fry things. Potato latkes are a good bet and one of the things I remember really loving as a child.

So I decided we would have latkes tonight. These turned out so well, a real taste of my childhood.

Potato Latke
Yields 30
A delicious and crispy fried potato cake
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 6 large potatoes, peeled and grated
  2. 1 onion, finely diced or grated
  3. 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  4. 2 large table spoons of flour or matza meal
  5. salt and pepper to taste
  6. Oil for frying
Instructions
  1. Grate the potato and squeeze out all the excess liquid you can.
  2. Add the diced onion and mix.
  3. Add the eggs, flour and salt and pepper.
  4. Mix well.
  5. Heat the oil in a large pan.
  6. Take small handfuls of the potato mixture and squeeze out any excess liquid (the dryer the mixture, the crispier the latke).
  7. Flatten the handful and place in the oil gently.
  8. Fill the pan and fry for 3 - 4 minutes.
  9. Gently turn each latke over and fry for a further 3 - 4 minutes.
  10. Place the latkes on paper towel to absorb extra oil and then place in a dish to keep warm in the oven.
Notes
  1. You can eat the latkes as is or you can sprinkle cinnamon sugar over them or eat them with sour cream or with apple sauce or with nutella. Its totally up to you.
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/

Shakshuka

On Thursday I was given a bag of tomatoes. They were almost too ripe.

I asked online for some suggestions of what to do with them and shakshuka jumped out at me. 

 

Shakshuka
Serves 4
I love shakshuka. Its one of my favourite Israeli dishes. And its an all in one pan cook and serve recipe so very little washing up!
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
45 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. Oil for frying
  2. 1 x onion, diced
  3. 1 x red pepper, diced
  4. 8 x tomatos, diced
  5. Garlic
  6. Spices (usually cayenne pepper or something a little spicy)
  7. Salt and pepper, to taste
  8. 6 x eggs
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy pan. You can split the ingredients into two smaller pans if you want to serve the shakshuka in personal servings.
  2. Throw in the onion and saute until golden.
  3. Add the red pepper and simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the tomato and garlic and stir until its all mixed together. Simmer on medium heat for 10 minutes or until the mixture starts to reduce.
  5. Add spices.
  6. Once the mixture is cooked through crack eggs directly into the sauce and cook through.
  7. Serve with fresh bread or pita to mop up the sauce.
A Bit of This A Bit of That http://gnatj.com/