Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Apple and Passionfruit Crumble

Following on from my love of Passionfruit Self-saucing Pudding which I have made many many times, I have another great passionfruit recipe; apple and passionfruit crumble. Bill Granger came up with this genius combination. I didn't love his crumble mix though and have created my own below. I suggest watching out for bags of passionfruit that work out quite cheaply. Scrape out the pulp of any passionfruits you haven't devoured and freeze ready to use in recipes like this. I am coming to the conclusion that all fruity desserts taste better with passionfruit, I bet it would be good added to apple pie...

serves 4-6
You could use this crumble topping on any fruit combination that takes your fancy, I have suggested two twists to the traditional apple.

1 C plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
100 g brown sugar
100g butter, diced and softened
1/2 C oats
Apple and Passionfruit
6 apples, peeled and thinly sliced
4 passionfruit, pulp removed and stirred to loosen
1 tbsp sugar
Apple and Berry
4-6 apples, peeled and sliced
2 tbsp water
1/2 C blueberries or other berries (frozen is fine)

Place the flour, baking powder and sugar in a large bowl (as large as you can find if you are going to let the kids help and if you have a 2 year helping like I did I would also place it on a clean tray so you can rescue the spillage). Add the butter and rub it in to the flour with your finger tips to make a crumbly topping, stop before you make dough. Add the oats and rub through.

Place the apples, sugar and a splash of water in a saucepan and simmer on low for 5 minutes to soften. Place in baking dish and add passionfruit or berries if using. Sprinkle crumble mix over the top. Bake at 180 for about 25 minutes until golden and bubbling.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Pistachio Rosewater Biscuits

I love these delicious and delicate biscuits, the kids not so much, isn't that a shame. They are flavoured with rosewater which gives them a wonderful smell. I love it so much I should find other recipes that use it. Hope you enjoy them too!

Pistachio Biscuits
This is a Bill Granger recipe from his book Open Kitchen

125 g shelled pistachios
125 g unsalted butter, softened
115 g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
1 egg
1 tbsp rosewater
185 g (1 1/2 cups) plain flour, sifted
1 tsp baking powder, sifted
2 tbsp plain flour, extra

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4). Place the pistachios in a small bowl, cover with water and set aside for 30 minutes. (It is important to soak the pistachios so you can slice through them when cutting the dough.)
Place the butter and sugar in a bowl and beat until pale and creamy. Add the egg and mix until combined. Add the rosewater, and stir until smooth.
Drain the pistachios well then add to the batter with the flour and baking powder. Fold through until a stiff dough forms.
Sift the extra flour over a clean dry surface, and knead the dough lightly for 30 seconds. Divide the dough in half and roll each into a log, roughly 5 cm (2 inches) in diameter. Wrap each log in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Remove the dough logs from the refrigerator, and slice into 5 mm rounds. Place the biscuits 2 cm apart on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Bake the biscuits for 10 to 12 minutes, or until lightly golden. Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Milo Slice

I came across a collection of milo recipes on iVillage the other day and thought the kids might like them. The milo slice recipe on The Organised Housewife site looked so easy I even suggested to my 7 year old that she might like to make it and she did. I cut and melted the butter and got all the ingredients out for her but she was able to do the rest of it herself. She was so proud of herself she wanted to do another batch the next day so there would be enough to take when visiting her grandparents on the weekend. The result was a delicious moist slice that she loved and that has lasted for well over in a week in the fridge (only because the house is full of baked goods at the moment - gingerbread men, crumble, so many temptations). I have written the recipe out below with a 7 year old audience in mind.

The cake and biscuit recipes look good too...

Milo Slice
recipe from The Organised Housewife adapted only slightly

½ C self-raising flour
½ C plain flour
½ C Milo
½ C dark choc chips
3/4 C rolled oats
½ C shredded coconut or 1/4 C dessicated coconut
⅔ C brown sugar
1 egg
125g butter, melted
Milk, if too dry

Turn the oven on to 180 C. Grease and line a slice tin.

Sift the flours into a large bowl. Add the milo, choc chips, oats, coconut and sugar and mix.

Crack the egg into a bowl and mix with a fork. Pour the egg and the melted butter into the large bowl and mix well.

Scrape the mixture into the tin and spread and flatten.

Bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes.

Pregnant and starving Bacon and Lentil Soup

I came home at lunch time today and was absolutely starving as usual but thought that I really should eat something other that toast on which I have been subsisting on for the past 3 months. I am pregnant with baby number four and although the worst of the morning sickness is over I still need to eat every few hours, with turkish bread toast being my favourite choice. But even Vegemite doesn't contain all the vitamins a girl needs to live so today I held out my hunger a little longer and cooked up some vegetable soup with bacon and lentils, it was delicious.
I have got into the habit of making my own chicken stock regularly thanks to the wonderful Smitten Kitchen blog. She makes her Perfect, uncluttered chicken stock in the slow cooker using only chicken wings, onion, garlic and water and it tastes wonderful! After boiling pots of stock dry several times in the past, this approach works for me and I end up with 3 litres of stock for minimal effort and I don't need to worry too much about the timing, just set the slow cooker to low if you are going out for awhile.

Bacon, Lentil and Vegetable Soup
serves 4
splash olive oil
2 bacon rashers, chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely diced
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
2 sprigs of thyme, leaves chopped
1 L chicken stock
1 small piece parmesan rind (optional)
1/2 tin lentils, rinsed or 1/4 C dried green French lentils
1 zucchini, diced
1 large handful silverbeet, spinach or kale leaves, shredded
few sprigs parsley, leaves chopped 
In a heavy based saucepan sauté the bacon in the olive oil over medium heat until slightly browned. Turn down the heat to low and add the onion and carrot. When softened add the garlic and thyme and stir until fragrant. Add the stock, lentils, parmesan rind and simmer until the dried lentils are tender (skip this step if using tinned lentils). Add the zucchini and silverbeet and simmer until the vegies are tender. Stir though parsley and serve. Sprinkle with parmesan to taste.