Saturday, August 14, 2010

For the Bride & the Groom

I will be attending my sister's bro-in-law's wedding & I thought I'd give one of my 'creations' as a gift. Had the idea of making a gel showpiece with a bride & groom piece in the centre.

This is the finished work:

Fruit Tart

I love fruit tart especially when there is strawberry in it. Reminds me of the days in Auh office. Our department would often find reasons or occasions to celebrate and beautiful strawberry tartlets were on the menu by default :-). So, anyway I decided to make a tart instead. I got a tart pan from my usual place & got some kiwis n mandarin. Unfortunately strawberries were not to be found (quite to my disappointment) but decided I'd go ahead & make the tart anyway with the l'le fruits I had.
I used the kiwis, mandarins & some green seedless grapes.
B hardly had any. My dad & I finished most of it :D. Must make the tart again some day when I get strawberries!

Now for the recipe:

To prepare the crust
8 Tbsps cold butter
1/4 cup sugar
1-1/2 cup flour
1/8 tsp salt
1 egg yolk
2 Tbsp heavy cream

1)Blend together the butter & sugar till well combined.
2)Add flour & salt & blend a few more times
3) Add yolk & cream & blend till incorporated. Dough will be slightly crumbly & should hold together when pinched.
4)Turn dough in a tart pan & Press into the pan, working up the sides till it is pressed evenly around the rim. Trim excess dough. Chill tart for 20mins
5)Preheat oven to 160C/325F
6)Bake the crust for 10-12mins or till golden colour.

To make the Pastry Cream
2 Large Eggs
3 Tbsp cornstarch
2 cups heavy cream or 1/2 heavy cream & 1/2 milk
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
1 tsp Vanilla Essence
1 Tbsp Butter

In a small bowl whisk together eggs & cornstarch until cornstarch is completely absorbed. Whisk 1/4 cup of heavy cream.
In a medium saucepan combine remaining heavy cream,sugar & salt & bring to boil.
Whisk 1/4 cup of hot cream mixture into the egg mixture, whisking constantly till mixture becomes thick.
Remove from heat & whisk in the vanilla & butter.
Transfer to a bowl & immediately press a piece of grease plastic wrap on top of the cream, to prevent skin formation on top of the cream. Allow to cool in the fridge.
When cream & crust are cooled, spoon in cream into the crust & spread evenly with a spatula/spoon. Arrange the fruit slices.

Glaze on fruits:
When fruit pieces arrangement is completed, brush fruit pieces alone with melted gelatine.
Melt unflavoured gelatin in hot water till all crystals dissolves. Brush with a pastry brush

Chill & serve.

Wheat Pizza

 My wheat Pizza
I always think  of making wheat pizza but somehow end up using plain flour! This time around I remembered to use up my wheat flour & voila! it came out just fine. I didn't find it much different from the other pizza anyway. I rolled out the dough & while transferring to my baking pan it got stretched & so instead of a 'round' shape it came out looking more like a rectangle. Now for the recipe:

Wheat Pizza: (Serves 5)
3 cups of Wheat flour (or 1/2 cup of plain flour & 1/2 cup of wheat flour or use 3 cups plain flour)
1 & 1/2 tsp Yeast
1/2 cups of warm water (to dissolve yeast)
1 cup of water
1 tsp Sugar
1 tsp SaltOlive oil
1) Heat the water in a saucepan & dissolve yeast & sugar in half cup of water. Set aside for 5-10mins
2) In a large bowl sift together the flour & salt & make a well in the centre. Once yeast proves, pour in the    centre of the bowl & mix in the flour.
3) Add the remaining 1 cup of water & form the dough. Knead it lightly & form a soft ball. Dough should be elastic & not rigid.
4) Coat another bowl with some olive oil & on the dough & the sides of the bowl.
5) Cover the bowl with a cling wrap & place a towel over the bowl & Let the dough rest in a warm place for an hour or till it doubles in size. (I usually place this inside my oven & of course the oven will be switched off)
6) Preheat oven to 225C
7)Once the dough has risen, punch down the air & knead it lightly till it is soft & form balls out of it & let it rest for 10 mins
8) Roll out the dough into circle & indent the dough surface with a fork so that when it is baked it wont rise like a bread.
9) Bake for 10 - 15mins (depending on the oven).
10) Apply the tomato sauce on the base & add on the desired toppings & grill for 10-12 mins or till the cheese melts & crust turns golden brown.
Take out of the oven & let it cool for a few mins & then serve with tomato ketchup.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Been long

Mujaddara & Kabsa

Thoum, Hummus, Raitha, Marinated chicken & Khubus

The past week was a busy one. Had guests over and so I made some Khubus, Hummus, Thoum, Kabsa, Falafel, Tahini etc etc etc... This morning I tried out a recipe for Mujaddara. I've been in search of the name of a dish that I remember was served in Lebanese Flower, Abu Dhabi. Its part of the mixed grill platter but for heavens I can't find anything that closely resembles it. Its greenish colour, tasted like a mix or rice and lentil probably but this one had lamb pieces in it. Mujaddara was something that came close to the description so I decided to cook it and see. Well I must say I don't recall the exact taste, its been 2yrs since I've had that stuff :-S. Maybe one day, somehow i'll be able to find out the name of my mystry dish :-).

                                                   Apple Pie

This afternoon I made my very first apple pie from scratch. And it tastes good. I must state though I didn't use Granny Smith apples but the normal red ones. So I used only half the measure of sugar the recipe called for and still my pie came out more on the sweet'ish' side :-). I was so impatient that I didn't wait for the pie to 'set' before I cut it :-S. I love the cinnamon with apples smell and taste. Its yum! B is not fond of apples... must see what he'll say to the Apple pie :-D.

Couldn't wait till the pie had cooled down & cut it & the result...

Made chicken quiche with the left over pastry roll :-) didn't want to throw it away so I made quiche for dinner.

                                                            Chicken Quiche
Quiche just before going into the oven
Chicken Quiche, fresh out of oven