Last week, Faith asked if we can bake a cake, we decided on chocolate and earlier this week I found a really great, one bowl, recipe that worked a treat.
Now, when it comes to icing/frosting the cake, we usually just do a simple icing sugar and water drizzle, but I had just bought a rather large bag of mini marshmallow and I got a bee in my bonnet about making a marshmallow frosting.
I searched online and couldn’t find a simple recipe so I asked The Cupcake Lady, Angel, if she had any ideas, and she pointed me to a pretty simple recipe that came out great.
Peel and slice the apples (or pears) into small chunks.
Place apples, lemon juice, sugars, cinnamon, salt and flour in a bowl and toss with your hands until all the fruit is covered.
Cover bowl of fruit with plastic wrap and set aside for an hour or more.
Take your frozen pastry dough out and let it defrost until it is manageable but still cool, I left mine in the fridge for 1 hour and it was ready when the fruit was ready.
When you are ready to assemble the pie, turn your oven on to 180C.
Once fruit is ready, take your dough and roll out a piece big enough to cover the bottom and sides of your pie dish.
Place the pastry inside the dish and push the sides up a bit so they stick to the dish.
Take your fruit and layer it into the pie dish, making sure the entire bottom is covered. Keep layering the fruit until in reaches the top of the dough up the sides of the dish.
There will be some liquid left in the bowl, pour no more than 3/4 of a cup of this liquid over the top of the fruit before covering the pie with more dough.
Roll out more dough and either place a full round piece on top of the pie or cut into strips and create a lattice top. You can also roll out the dough and cut shapes with cookie cutters, then create a patter with the shapes.
If you place a full piece on top, cut a few slits into the dough to allow steam to escape.
Brush the pastry dough with a bit of beaten egg.
Once the pie is ready, place in the oven at 180C for about 30 minutes.
Keep an eye on the pie and if you see the edges starting to burn you can cover them with a bit of foil molded to fit the pie dish.
The pie is ready when the pastry is brown and the fruit is bubbling around the edges of the pastry.
Allow to cool down before slicing. Serve with whipped cream or ice cream.
I was looking for something new to throw over chicken breasts and somehow I came across a teriyaki chicken with home made sauce. Now I cannot for the life of me find that recipe, so in the interest of not forgetting, I am writing it down (from memory so it may not be perfect).
1 cup full cream (or high fat percentage) plain yogurt
pinch of course salt
cheesecloth (or a pair of new knee high stockings - I used 20 denier)
a colander or large sieve
a bowl big enough to fit the colander/seive
Place your colander into your bowl and then your cheesecloth over your colander.
If you are using stockings, double them up and get someone to hold them open for you.
Mix your salt and yogurt together.
Spoon or pour your yogurt into the cheesecloth/stockings.
Tie the top of the cloth/stockings closed at the top, squeezing the yogurt towards the bottom as you go.
Now you can either leave the cloth/stockings in the colander as is or you can hang them above the colander and let gravity help (I hung mine from the kitchen tap).
Leave your yogurt to drain for at least 24hrs, the longer you leave it the firmer the cheese will be.
You can leave it out on the counter (in winter) or in the fridge if its too warm.
When you are ready to unveil your cheese, give it one last squeeze to remove any residual liquid and then, over a plate, unwrap the newly formed cheese.
There are a few options once your cheese is ready
You can place it in an airtight container in the fridge and use it as a plain cream cheese spread.
You can roll the cheese into small balls and then roll the balls into various herb and spice mixes before placing in an airtight container in the fridge.
You can roll the cheese into small balls and then place them in a glass jar with a well sealing lid. Top the balls of cheese with a high quality olive oil to preserve them. You can also add various herbs and spices to the oil to infuse the cheese with flavour.
You can also add your herbs and spices to the yogurt before draining if you like which will give you a flavoured cream cheese when you are done.
As you all probably know, we keep a kosher home. That means that if we have a meat meal, the dessert needs to be dairy free.
This Rosh Hashanah, my brother hosted the meal, which was a feast of amazing chicken, deli roll, veggies and more, and I was making the desserts.
I really really wanted to make a Peppermint Crisp Tart (click on the link for the original recipe) but it needed to be parve/dairy free.
My one issue was finding a solid slab of dairy free peppermint chocolate. Not so easy apparently. You can get After Eights but the peppermint part is soft and I didnt think that would work. I found an artisan, bean to bar, locally made chocolate but I could not get the peppermint one for love nor money. Eventually I gave in and bought plain dairy free chocolate and then found a peppermint extract to add to the cream.
Another concern was what to swap the dulche de leche for. It had to be sweet but diary free and I came up with using Biscoff Lotus spread. I’m not sure this is available in SA but Im sure you can find some type of dairy free alternative.
All in all the dessert was a hit, everyone loved it and it was as close to a regular peppermint crisp tart as one could hope for.
Here is the recipe.
Dairy Free Peppermint Tart
A dairy free take on my traditional Peppermint Crisp Tart
1 jar Biscoff Lotus spread (or any dairy free sweet spread)
1 packet of plain biscuits
1 large slab of dairy free chocolate, broken or crumbled into small pieces
A few drops of peppermint extract
Place the cream and a few drops of peppermint extract in a bowl.
Whip the cream until it forms stiff peaks.
Place a single layer of biscuits on the bottom of a large square/rectangular dish.
Microwave the Lotus spread for a few seconds for easy pouring.
Cover the biscuits with a layer of Lotus spread.
Sprinkle half the crumbled chocolate over the Lotus layer.
Add a thin layer of whipped cream.
Add another layer of biscuits.
Add another layer of Lotus spread.
Cover with a thick layer of whipped cream.
Sprinkle the remaining chocolate over the top of the cream.
Cover and refrigerate until you are ready to serve.
I used a dairy free bitter chocolate, if you really want it to taste like Peppermint Crisp then look for a dairy free 'milk' chocolate or non bitter chocolate. Personally I liked the bitter contrast to the sweet Lotus spread and the minty cream.
Last night was the first time we have had a shabbat dinner in MY home with my mom, my brother and I around the table.
Even though Paul and I have had our own home together for the last 10 years, its only been in the last 2 years or so that we have been kosher. My brother Matt came to Israel about 10 years ago and is strictly kosher so when he did come to South Africa we always had shabbat dinner at my moms house.
Last night, our family of four was joined by my brother, his wife, his mother in law and my nephew, my mom who is here visiting and my sister from another mister and her other half. 11 people around my table. Naches. It just doesnt get any better than last night!
My mom and I spent the afternoon cooking a feast and I think we really outdid ourselves.
Slow pot roasted beef with onions and potatoes (recipe below)
Teriyaki chicken wings and legs with chopped cashews
Chickpea and red onion salad
Roro brought her famous Quinoa salad (click the link and scroll down for the recipe)