Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Perfect No-Cook Strawberry Ice Cream


This is indeed a fantastic Strawberry Ice-Cream recipe. The perfect No Cooking Required dessert, it’s so easy to make. All you need is strawberries, sugar, lemon juice, salt, heavy cream, and of course, an ice-cream maker. Try it!


Recipe adapted from Gourmet (August 2009)

Perfect No-Cook Strawberry Ice Cream

(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

1 lb (450 g) Strawberries, trimmed, halve if large
¾ Cup Sugar
¾ tsp Fresh Lemon Juice
1/8 tsp Sea Salt
2 Cups Heavy Cream

Method

In a large bowl, coarsely mash strawberries with sugar, lemon juice, and sea salt with a potato masher. Let stand, stirring, and mash occasionally for about 10 minutes.

Transfer half of the strawberry mixture into a blender and puree with cream until smooth. Return strawberry cream to bowl with remaining strawberries and allow the mixture to chill thoroughly, stirring occasionally and then freeze it in an ice cream maker.

Note:Ice cream keeps 1 week.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Roasted Nugget Potatoes


Some of you may remember from my previous posts that I really like the yellow variety or Yukon Gold BC nugget potatoes. These yellow nugget potatoes’ flesh remains firm yellow and yet, so creamy after being cooked. Whenever they are in season, I will definitely stock up on these irresistible “gold nuggets”. They are excellent when steamed, boiled, or pan-fried, and are exceptional served either cooked or cold in salads. These oven Roasted Nugget Potatoes are baked till crispy and golden brown on the outside with rosemary, sea salt, olive oil, and a little butter. Just remember to boil the nugget potatoes a day ahead and chilled them in the refrigerator, makes it easier to cut and the flesh will remain firm when baked or sautéd. They are so tasty I bet you will be asking for more! :-)


Roasted Nugget Potatoes
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

650 g Nugget Potatoes, whole
2 Sprigs Rosemary leaves
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
Maldon Sea Salt

Method

Boil the potatoes in a large pot of salted water until just tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain and refrigerate the potatoes overnight.

Preheat the oven to 425˚F (220˚C).

Cut the potatoes into halve or quarter (make sure they are uniform sized). Toss the potatoes with olive oil, rosemary, and sea salt.

Arrange the potatoes in a single layer-baking pan. Scatter the butter on top of the potatoes. Bake for about 35 minutes; turn once or twice until the potatoes are crispy and golden brown in color. Remove from the oven and drain on paper towel. Season the potatoes with sea salt, if desired. Serve warm.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Peach Gallete


This is a single serving Peach Gallete, or mini ones if you prefer. Gallete is a free-form crusty cakes, and the fillings can be sweet or savory. For this recipe, I used ready refrigerated pie crust, and cut them into smaller round pieces. Then, I layered them with thinly slices of fresh peaches, sugar, and a little knob of butter before baking.


Peach Gallete
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

1 Refrigerated Pie Crust, cut into 6 (4”/10cm) in diameter
3 Medium Peaches, halved, sliced thinly, and divided
2 Tbsp Sugar
1 Tbsp of Unsalted Butter, cut into 6 pcs
2 Tbsp of Milk

Method

Preheat the oven to 400 ˚F.

Toss the peaches with 1 Tbsp of sugar.

Arrange the peach slices in slightly overlapping concentric rings on the pastry. Leaving about 1 inch border at the edge. Fold the border of dough over the edge of the peaches. Brush the pastry edges with milk, top the peaches with butter and sugar.

Bake the gallete until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Let cool on the rack. Serve warm.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Prawns And Salsa Tostadas


My kids just can’t get enough of these simple and yet, great tasting Prawns And Salsa Tostadas. Delicious and refreshing, a mix of crispy texture with sweet and sour flavors from all the fresh ingredients. Tostadas are popular savory snacks in Mexico, usually accompanied with salsa, guacamole, or beans. The crispy deep fried tortillas is a great companion with toppings such as grilled meat or seafood, vegetables, salsa, beans, and cheese. Here, I layered my Tostadas with shredded romaine lettuce, a good serving of fresh salsa, and some succulent grilled prawns. Try making it!


Prawns And Salsa Tostadas
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

12 Fresh Corn Tortillas (store-bought)
1 Head Romaine Lettuce, shredded
500 g Large Prawns, peeled, deveined, and pat dry
1 ½ tsp Chili Flakes
2 ½ Tbsp Fresh Lime Juice
1 ½ tsp Cumin Powder
1 Clove Garlic, chopped
4 Tbsp Chopped Fresh Coriander
2 Stalks Scallions, chopped
2 ½ Tbsp Olive Oil
¾ tsp Sea Salt
Corn Oil for frying
Lime Wedges
Fresh Coriander for garnish

Salsa
1 Large Beef Steak Tomato or 3 Medium Ripe Tomatoes, diced
1 Small White Onion, finely diced
1 Jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 Ripe Mango, peeled and diced
2 Avocado, peeled and diced
½ Cup (loosely packed) Chopped Fresh Cilantro
Juice of ½ Lime, or more
Sea Salt

Method

Combine the chili flakes, lime juice, cumin powder, garlic, coriander, scallions, olive oil, and sea salt. Whisk well and toss in the prawns. Marinate the prawns in the refrigerator for about 1 hour. Grill the prawns over high heat or sauté until they are no longer pink and set aside.

Heat just enough oil (about ¾ inch), over medium-high heat. Fry the corn tortillas, one at time and turning once or twice until crisp, about 50 to 60 seconds per tortilla. Shake off any excess oil and drain on paper towels.

In a large bowl, combine all the salsa ingredients and mix in the prawns. Season the mixture well with sea salt and additional lime juice if necessary. Refrigerate the salsa mixture until ready to serve.

To serve, layer the crisp tortillas with lettuce, then top with the prawns and salsa mixture, lime wedges, and garnish with cilantro sprigs if desired. Serve immediately.


Friday, September 17, 2010

Dutch Baby With Lemon Sugar


This is a Dutch Baby pancake, or sometimes called a German pancake. The pancake is oven-baked in a skillet until it puffs-up and turns golden brown in color. Serve this Dutch Baby straight from the oven with some lemon sugar and some fresh berries. It’s like a sweet breakfast version of Yorkshire pudding. Simply delicious!


Recipe adapted from Gourmet-August 2009

Dutch Baby With Lemon Sugar
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

1/3-Cup (65 g) Sugar
2 tsp Grated Lemon Zest
3 Large Eggs, at room temperature
2/3 Cup (160 ml) Whole Milk, at room temperature
2/3 Cup (80 g) All-Purpose Flour
¼ tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
1/8 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/8 tsp Grated Nutmeg
1/8 tsp Sea Salt
½ Stick (55 g) Unsalted Butter, cut into pieces

Equipment: A 10-inch (25 cm) Cast-Iron Skillet

Method

Put the skillet on middle rack of the oven and preheat oven to 450˚F or 225˚C.

In a small bowl, rub the lemon zest with sugar.

Beat the eggs with an electric mixer at high speed until pale and frothy then beat in milk, flour, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sea salt until smooth, about 1 minute.

Remove the skillet from oven and melt the butter. Tilt the pan so that the butter coats the sides and pour in the batter. Return the skillet to the oven and bake until puffed and golden brown, 18 to 25 minutes.

Serve immediately, topped with lemon sugar and fresh berries, if desired.

Serve 2-4

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Strawberry Sunshine Smoothies


Smoothies is a great way to include fruits in your kids diet. Luckily for me, my kids just love fresh fruits and they also love their smoothies! Strawberry Sunshine Smoothies happens to be one of their favorites. It’s really yummy and refreshing. Just freeze the sliced bananas and strawberries a day ahead. Then add yogurt, honey, and orange juice to the fruits and blend well. Enjoy!


Strawberry Sunshine Smoothies
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients


2 Ripe Bananas, peeled, sliced and frozen
20 Strawberries, hulled and frozen
5 Tbsp Yogurt
2 Cups (500 ml) Orange Juice
4 Tbsp Honey

Method

Combine all the ingredients in a blender, and process until thick, smooth, and creamy. Serve immediately.

Serves 4


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Chocolate Banana Nut Bread


You must try baking this Chocolate Banana Nut Bread. It’s so easy to prepare, just use a whisk to mix the dry ingredients, and a spatula to fold the batter. The smell and taste from the combination of bananas, chocolates, and pecan nuts was just wonderful. This is definitely my favorite new banana bread recipe!


Recipe adapted from Joy Of Baking by Stephanie & Rick Jaworski

Chocolate Banana Nut Bread
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

½ Cup (55 g) Pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
1 3/4 Cup (230 g) All Purpose Flour
¼ Cup (30 g) Dutch-processed Cocoa Powder
1 Cup (200 g) Granulated White Sugar (I used 170 g of sugar)
1 tsp Baking Powder
¼ tsp Baking Soda
¼ tsp Sea Salt
2 Large Eggs, lightly Beaten
½ Cup (113 g) Unsalted Butter, melted and cooled
3 Ripe Bananas (approximately 1 lb or 454 g), mashed well (about 1 ½ Cups)
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
½ Cup (85 g) White or Dark Chocolate Chips (I used Bittersweet Chocolate Chips)

Method

Preheat the oven to 350˚F or 180˚C.

Butter and flour a 9 x 5 x 3 inches (23 x 13 x 8 cm) loaf pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In another bowl, combine the mashed bananas, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla. Lightly fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients with a rubber spatula until just combines. Fold in the nuts and chocolate chips. Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 55 to 65 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool and then remove the bread from the pan. Serve warm or a room temperature.


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Buttermilk Corn Bread


This corn bread is light and was just full of corn aroma, as it should. You will taste the sweetness of the corn kernels in every bite and it was the perfect complement for the Chili con carne!


Buttermilk Corn Bread
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

1 Cup (180 g) Yellow Cornmeal (preferably stone ground)
½ Cup (80 g) All Purpose Flour
2 Tbsp Sugar
2 tsp Baking Powder
½ tsp Sea Salt
1 Large Egg, lightly beaten
¾ Cup (180 ml) Buttermilk
¼ Cup (60 ml) Corn Oil or Canola Oil
¾ Cup (180 ml) Corn Kernel (from tin corn, drained well)

Method

Preheat the oven to 400˚F or 200˚C.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, sea salt and mix well with a whisk.

In a smaller mixing bowl, combine the egg, buttermilk, and oil and whisk until just blended. Then pour into the dry ingredients mixture. Gently stir all the ingredients until the batter almost blended. Add the corn kernels and stir until blended.

Pour the batter into the cast iron pan (8 to 10 inches pan) and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until the edges of the corn bread become golden brown in color. Remove from the oven and let it cool on a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Serves 6 to 8

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Chili With Beef And Beans-Chili Con Carne


I think this Chili With Beef and Beans or more commonly known as Chili con carne, is an ideal hearty meal for the current cooler season. Here’s my take of this popular Mexican-American dish that’s typically made from chili peppers, tomatoes, garlic, onions, cumin, and beans, along with chopped or ground beef. It’s probably one of the easiest one-pot meal that you can cook up quickly. As usual, I added my favorite ingredients to this dish. I used ancho chili powder to provide the mild to medium heat and the deep smokey flavor that’s essential for this dish, and red kidney beans, which is one of my favorite legumes. The end result was just fantastic.


Chili With Beef And Beans-Chili Con Carne
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

3 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Cloves Garlic, chopped
1 Medium Yellow Onion, finely chopped
400 g Ground Beef
1 tsp Dried Oregano
4 Tbsp Ancho Chili Powder
1 tsp Cumin Powder
2 Cans (15 oz/425 g x 2) Red Kidney Beans, drained
1 Can (28 oz/794g/1 lb 12 oz) Diced Tomatoes With Juice
1 Cup of Beef Stock
Sea Salt

Shredded Cheese
Chopped Cilantro
Sour Cream, optional

Method

Preheat oven to 350˚F (180˚C).

Heat the cast iron pot over a moderate heat. Add the oil, garlic, and onion and cook until golden, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes.

Turn the heat on high, mix in the ground beef, oregano, chili powder, cumin, and stir until the beef mixture is deep red in color and the meat is no longer pink.

Add the beans, diced tomatoes, and stock into the beef mixture. Bring it to a boil, switch off the heat and cover with a piece of parchment paper and then cover with the lid. Cook in the preheated oven for about 1 ½ hours and season with sea salt. Serve the chili with cheese, cilantro, and sour cream, if desired.

Serves 6 to 8

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Baked Potatoes With Broccoli And Cheese


Do try making this scrumptious Baked Potatoes With Broccoli And Cheese for your next gathering at home. The potatoes can be baked ahead, just top with fillings and pop them in the oven for about 10 minutes before your guests arrive. That simple and it tastes great!


Baked Potatoes With Broccoli And Cheese
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

6 Medium Red Potatoes, scrubbed

1 Head (250 g) Broccoli, cut into small florets

120 g Grated Jalapeno Jack Cheese or White Cheddar
120 g Grated Sharp Cheddar
3 Strips of Grilled /Cooked Bacon, break into smaller pieces

Sea Salt

Freshly Ground Black Pepper


Method


Preheat the oven to 400˚F. 



Place the potatoes on a large baking tray. Bake the potatoes for about 45 minutes, or until softened. Remove the potatoes from the oven and let the potatoes cool slightly.

Blanch the broccoli in boiling water for about 30 seconds and drain. Then plunge them into ice-cold water for 5 minutes. Drain well and set aside.



Cut each potato in half and scoop out the flesh and leaving about ¼ to ½ inch of the potato skin.



Turn the oven to 450˚F. 



Fill the potato skin with broccoli, cheese, bacon, and season lightly with sea salt and black pepper.

Bake the potatoes for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. Serve the potatoes with warm or at room temperature.


Serves 6


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Rice Vermicelli Soup With Deep Fried Fish Fillets


Having just returned from my summer vacation, I did not want to indulge in anything too heavy for dinner as I was still recovering from jet lag. I just needed something soupy. So, I decided to cook this delicious and simple meal, Rice Vermicelli Soup with Deep Fried Fish Fillets. I used a fresh sea bass for this recipe’s deep fried fish fillets. As for the soup base, I just used the fish bones and lots of chicken bones to sweetened the soup. The clear aromatic soup was just what I needed, light and yet hearty, served with a handful of rice vermicelli, and topped off with a few slices of deep fried sea bass fillets. Simply divine!

Since we are on the topic about fish, if you are interested, you may want to check out an article I submitted about how intimidated I get when dealing with live fish. This was in response to CanadianLiving.com’s question to a few of their favorite food bloggers from around the world, “What ingredient are you most intimidated by?”. Do visit CanadianLiving.com, it’s one of the largest lifestyle website in Canada, and have a good laugh reading about my “live fish” experience. Here is the link for the article and I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Colleen Tully, their food editor, for including Seasaltwithfood as one of their favorite food blogs.


Rice Vermicelli Soup With Deep Fried Fish Fillets
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

1 Whole (2.5 lbs/1.134 kg) Sea Bass Fish, fillets (sliced into 6 pieces for each fillet) and reserved bones for the soup
1 tsp Ginger Juice
¼ tsp Sea Salt
½ Cup Corn Flour
3 Salted Plums
200 g Salted Mustard, sliced
3 Tomatoes
1 Tbsp Sesame Oil
2 tsp Soy Sauce
3 Tbsp of Shaoxing Wine
Sea Salt to taste
1 Piece (3 inches) Ginger, julienned
300 g Rice Vermicelli or Rice Sticks (cooked as per manufacturer’s instructions)
Peanut Oil or Vegetable Oil for deep-frying
Ground White Peppercorn

Soup Base
12 Cups (3 Quarts) of Chicken Broth or Water (with 2 lbs Chicken Bones or 3 Chicken Cubes)
1 Yellow Onion, peeled and halved
½ tsp White Peppercorns
1 Slice of Ginger (2 inches), smashed
Fish Bones from the Whole Sea Bass

Chili Sauce
8 – 10 Thai Bird’s Eye Chilies, chopped
3 Tbsp Soy Sauce

Method

Make the soup base; combine the chicken broth (bones or cubes), onion, peppercorns, ginger, and fish bones in a large stick pot. Bring the stock to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for about 1 hour.

Strain the stock into another pot and mix in the salted plums and continue to simmer for another 30 minutes. Then add in the salted mustard and tomatoes and bring it to a boil again and let it simmer gently for another 10 to 15 minutes. Season the soup with sesame oil, soy sauce, wine, and sea salt.

Marinate the fish fillets with 1 tsp ginger juice and ¼ tsp of sea salt for about 20 minutes.

Heat just enough oil in a wok or pan over moderate to high temperature. Deep fry the fish in batches until golden in color and drain on paper towel.

To serve the Rice Vermicelli, divide the cooked vermicelli among 4 or 6 bowls. Top each with the broth, vegetables, deep fried fish, some julienned ginger, and with a few dashes of ground white peppercorn. Serve hot with some chili sauce.


Sunday, September 5, 2010

Easy Chocolate Brownies


After an early dinner at home a few days ago, I had a strong craving for some chocolate. Didn’t want to succumb to just some sweet chocolate bars, I raided the fridge and whipped up this Chocolate Brownie for dessert instead! I knew I only had some butter, chocolate bars, and eggs in the fridge, so there weren’t exactly a lot of options, except to bake these simple brownies. Everything was prepared in a single bowl, within about half an hour from prep, the brownies were sitting on the table for all to enjoy. Real easy, try it!


Easy Chocolate Brownies
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

100 g Unsalted Butter
100 g Bittersweet Chocolate
100 g Granulated Sugar
2 Large Eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
70 g All Purpose Flour, sifted
1/4 tsp pinch of Sea Salt

Method

Preheat the oven to 350˚F (180˚C).

 Butter 4 (3") ramekins.


In a large bowl, over a double boiler, melt the butter and chocolate over gently simmering hot water, stirring, just until the mixture has melted and remove from the heat.

Whisk in the sugar and then gradually add the eggs, and then add the vanilla, followed by the flour and sea salt, stirring only until each ingredient is incorporated.

Spoon the batter into the ramekins and bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until the tops of the brownie spring back when touched. Transfer the ramekins to racks to cool for 10-15 minutes before serving.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Kiwi Fruits With Prawns Salad


This delicious sweet and sour Kiwi Fruits With Prawns Salad will have your family or guests asking for more! The combination of the sweet fresh prawns, and the tartness of the Kiwi fruits paired very well with the simple tangy lime dressing. Serve the salad chilled and enjoy!


Kiwi Fruits With Prawns Salad
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

4 Kiwi Fruits, peeled, sliced and chilled
12 – 14 Large Cooked Prawns, chilled
A small handful of Fresh Mint Leaves

Lime Dressing
2 ½ Tbsp of Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice
1 Tbsp Sugar
½ tsp Fish Sauce
A pinch of sea salt
1 Tbsp of Peanut Oil

Method

In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, sugar, fish sauce, sea salt, and peanut oil.

Combine the Kiwi fruits and prawns. Add the lime dressing and toss to combine. Garnish the salad with some mint leaves. Serve the salad chilled.

Serves 3 to 4


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