Passionfruit Scrolls

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My little sister’s birthday is today, and one of her favourite flavours is passionfruit. I spent days trying to figure out what I could make for her… do I make a cake? Tart? I found a recipe for these scrolls and they looked damn tasty. It’s also the beginning of Winter, so I thought something warm straight out of the oven would be really nice too.  This is a really easy recipe and she loved it! 

Passionfruit Scrolls

Makes 8 scrolls

  • 2 cups self-raising flour
  • 2 TBS icing sugar
  • 80g butter, cubed
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup creme anglaise (or custard)
  • 2 TBS passionfruit pulp

For the icing

  • 1/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1 TBS passionfruit pulp

Preheat the oven to 210C and line a tray with baking paper.

Combine the flour, sugar and butter in a food processor. Process until the mixture resembles bread crumbs. Add the milk and stir until a dough comes together. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Roll into a rectangle, approximately 25cm x 35cm. Spread with the creme anglaise or custard and top with the passionfruit pulp. Starting with the long side closest to you, tightly roll into a log. Trim the edges and discard, and cut the roll into eight equal portions.

Arrange the pieces cut-side down onto your prepared baking tray. Leave a little bit of room between each scroll (they will expand). Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Mix together the sugar and passionfruit to make an icing. When the scrolls are cooked, drizzle the icing using a fork and serve immediately with some extra creme anglaise.

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Vanilla Chai Cupcakes

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Almost four years ago, I created a cupcake recipe that became a huge hit and I am so, so proud of it! You can find my original post here at an old blog.

I’ve made the recipe several times over the years, but today was the first time I cracked it out in a LONG time. I decided to make a post revisiting my favourite recipe of all time, because I think my photography has improved a lot as well. If you look carefully, I have even used the same little cake stand!

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What I really love is that this recipe has been made and shared by blogs all over the world! One of my favourite adaptations is this one with a tangy blackberry filling… yummo! Now I must be honest with you all, one blog that used my recipe never gave me any credit and that blog post went on to become very popular. That really annoys me – this recipe is like a piece of artwork. I worked so hard to create it, and I shared it with the world because it’s so tasty but please give people credit!

So here is the original recipe again. Some people make the icing with a mixture of cream cheese and butter but I am yet to try this myself, I think I just like sticking to the original!

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Vanilla Chai Cupcakes

Makes 12

  • 100g butter
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ quantity chai spice mix (recipe follows)
  • 1 ¼ cups plain flour, sifted
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • ½ tsp bicarb soda
  • ½ tsp apple cider vinegar (white vinegar is fine)

Chai Spice Mix

  • 1 ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • Mix spices together in a small bowl.

Vanilla Chai Buttercream

  • 125g butter
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 3 cups icing sugar, sifted
  • ½ quantity chai spice mix
  • 1-2 tbs cold milk

Preheat the oven to 160C

Cream together the butter and sugar. Add the vanilla and beat in one egg at a time. Stir in half the quantity of chai spice mix. Fold in the flour and buttermilk alternately and stir until combined, don’t overmix. Mix together the bicarb soda and vinegar and mix into the batter.

Spoon into prepared cupcake cases and bake 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

To make the buttercream, beat the butter until it is creamy and very pale in colour. Stir in the vanilla and the rest of the chai spice mix. Slowly beat in the icing sugar about ½ cup at a time. If the buttercream is too thick add 1-2 tbs of cold milk until the desired consistency is reached.

Pipe onto cooled cupcakes, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and serve!

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Chicken Waldorf Sandwiches

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These little sandwiches are perfect for afternoon teas, picnics and barbeques, or even just to take for lunch. I promised a friend I would bring something to her house when I visited this afternoon but I didn’t know what and it only occurred to me JUST before I had to get ready and go… sandwiches with leftover roast chicken. They are really easy to make with very minimal ingredients and are REALLY delicious! The whole plate was gone within minutes.

Chicken Waldorf Sandwiches

Makes 16 small sandwiches

  • 1 chicken breast from a leftover roast, chopped
  • 2 sticks celery, finely chopped
  • 1/4 apple, finely chopped (I used a Royal Gala for colour)
  • 4 large walnuts, chopped
  • 2 TBS whole-egg mayonnaise
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 8 Slices of bread

Just mix together all the ingredients and fill the bread to make sandwiches. Carefully cut off the crusts with a serrated bread knife and then cut into 4 diagonally to make triangles. This recipe is very easily adaptable for different tastes, especially if you want a little bit more apple or celery.

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Vanilla Bean and Cardamom Rice Pudding (Vegan)

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How cute are these little jars? I don’t often wander into Wheel & Barrow because I always walk out with a bag full of goodies, but I could not resist buying some of these beautiful jars! I don’t make many things that go in jars (maybe I should) so the first thing that popped into my head was warm rice pudding. My Mum makes a rice pudding that has a lot of spices so I thought I would take one of those (cardamom) and pair it with vanilla bean. It’s so yummy, and I think reasonably healthy too! I used light coconut milk and for the rest of the liquid, water. They work out to be about 230 calories a serve. I used white sugar, but you can definitely substitute with a sweetener or agave.

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Vanilla Bean and Cardamom Rice Pudding

Serves 4

  • 100g jasmine rice
  • 270ml can coconut milk (I used light)
  • 400ml water
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 50g caster sugar

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to the boil on medium-high heat. Reduce to low and cook stirring occasionally until the rice is cooked. Set aside for a few minutes for it to cool down and serve. Can be kept refrigerated to eat cold as well.

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I think these would make really cute gifts too!

3 Ingredient Nutella Brownies

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Yesterday someone posted a recipe on my Facebook wall… nutella brownies with only 3 ingredients. So I decided to give them a try today! This blog is about healthy recipes, but I think a healthy lifestyle means eating foods we really love every now and then… nutella is one of those!  So a few things, the recipe I used said it would make 12 brownies but there aint enough batter for that… more like 8. I reckon they would be better in a slice tin rather than wrappers. ACTUALLY, I think they would be best in small ramekins served with fresh berries… they were pretty delicious straight out of the oven and it was more like a pudding than a brownie, with a crunchy top.

Nutella Brownies

Makes 8

  • 280g nutella
  • 62g self-raising flour
  • 2 eggs
  • Pinch of salt (optional, but I think it’s required)

Preheat the oven to 180C. Combine all the ingredients together and mix well. Divide into 8 cupcake pans and bake for 15 – 20 minutes. I left the middles a little gooey but you can cook it all the way through for a more chewy brownie texture. These work out to be about 240 calories each, so it’s a nice snack with a glass of milk but definitely a treat and not an everyday thing (unless you really want one everyday and that’s ok too).

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Perfecting Poached Eggs

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Can you believe that this morning was the first time that I managed to poach an egg properly? It’s something I’ve avoided doing  because every time I tried, the egg whites would just go everywhere and I really thought it was just something I couldn’t conquer. Well, this morning I thought I would give it a final try and I watched lots of youtube videos beforehand to get some tips. Here’s what worked for me:

1. Boil a large pot of water
2. Add a generous splash of white wine vinegar, and stir the water to make a whirlpool
3. Crack an egg into a little bowl and slowly drop the egg in the boiling water (careful not to burn your finger like I did!)
4. You will see the egg come together very quickly and the vinegar helps the egg whites cook together
5. After about two minutes, use a slotted spoon to take the poached eggs out. I think going by instinct is the way to go, I wanted the yolks to be runny but all the whites cooked

Here’s one of the videos I watched that was very helpful, but I stirred my water so I didn’t have to trim any excess.

Now just serve and eat them! When my poached eggs came out perfectly I was so happy, they looked like soft little pillows! Can’t get more perfect than that… now I want to eat them all the time!

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Malaysian Spicy Fried Chicken

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This dish is one of my childhood favourites! It’s easy and it doesn’t have many ingredients to make it delicious. I have to be honest, it wasn’t quite like my Mum’s – the onions need to be cooked a little longer so they begin to caramelise; it gives the dish another depth of flavour. I really love how simple it is to put together, and there is a squeeze of fresh lemon juice that just makes it even more amazing. There isn’t much to it which makes it pretty healthy if you don’t go overboard on the rice. I used chicken thigh cutlets because I don’t think chicken breast would be nice and juicy and flavorful – which I think is important! But, it is easily adaptable depending on your tastes. Here is the recipe, I don’t put too much chilli powder but that can also be adapted to your liking.

Malaysian Spicy Fried Chicken

Serves 6

  • 6 chicken thigh cutlets
  • 4 brown onions, sliced
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp ground chilli
  • 2 tsp ginger, minced
  • 2 tsp garlic, crushed
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 TBS fresh lemon juice

Season the chicken thighs generously with salt and pepper. Fry in a little olive oil over a high heat until browned and then set aside. In the same pan, add the onions, spices, ginger and garlic. Fry until the onions are browned. Add the chicken back in with the lemon juice and cook uncovered for 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Serve with rice and salad.

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Chunky Mushroom Diane Sauce

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I’ve never made a Diane Sauce before, but tonight I thought I would give it a try to go with my chicken and steamed veggies. It was so easy, but I think my version may be a little different from the “classic” recipe. For one thing, it doesn’t have Brandy. But that’s ok, it was so delicious that I WOLFED it down as soon as I sat down to eat it. It’s also a little chunkier with loads of mushrooms but it still had a lovely rich and creamy texture. I think normally you serve Diane Sauce with steak, but it went with chicken perfectly. Actually, it tasted amazing with the peas! Here’s my recipe, enough for two or three.

Chunky Mushroom Diane Sauce

  • 200g mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced finely
  • 1 TBS worcestershire sauce
  • 1 TBS tomato paste
  • 1 TBS cooking cream (I use light)

Saute the mushrooms, garlic and onion until cooked and reduced. Add the worcestershire sauce and tomato paste and cook for a few minutes before adding the cooking cream and stirring through. If you would like the sauce less chunky, add a little water and stir until desired consistency. Serve immediately!

I used Philadelphia Cooking Cream (light) and this sauce ended up 127 calories in total, so divided by two or three it becomes a delicious and healthy sauce.

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Omelettes! Tips & Tricks

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I am egg obsessed. They are tasty, healthy, protein-packed bundles of awesome. I love their versatility too; fried, poached, scrambled, omelettes and a base for sauces and curds. They taste great with so many different flavours both savoury and sweet. I could talk about eggs all day! This post is all about omelettes. They are one of my favourite breakfasts because they are quick and easy, and I am ALL about that. So how do you make a successful omelette? Let me share some tips with you…

  1. Whisk the eggs with a splash of water, rather than milk
  2. Pour the eggs into a saucepan on medium-heat so it doesn’t cook the bottom too quickly. Swirl it around, turn the temperature low and put a lid on it.
  3. The water in the eggs will “steam” and the omelette will be gorgeous and fluffy!
  4. Cook your filling first, set aside and then stuff the omelette and fold over.
  5. When making an omelette for one, use at least 2 eggs so it’s not too delicate and will fold over without breaking.
  6. The more eggs you use, the bigger the frypan. If you have too many eggs it probably won’t cook on the stovetop so shove the pan under the grill for a few minutes to cook the top.

My favourite fillings for omelettes:

  • Smoked salmon with sauteed baby spinach and tomato
  • Ham and cheese
  • Sauteed mushrooms and baby spinach
  • Sauteed mushrooms, chorizo and tomatoes

The possiblities are endless! I love serving my omelettes with a side salad for a bit of fresh crunch.

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Chicken with Bacon, Mushrooms and Peas

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My favourite dinners are ones that are quick, really delicious and leave enough for lunch the next day. This is one of those dishes. I tend to eat low-carb at night, it just seems to work with my body better especially with sleep and getting up in the morning. Eating low-carb means that I fill up on protein and LOTS of vegetables.

The night before I took this photo, I served it with steamed broccoli and carrot. I had leftovers so for lunch I made a little salad. Here is the recipe.

Chicken with Bacon, Mushrooms and Peas

Makes 6 serves

  • 6 chicken thighs (I use skinless cutlets)
  • 200g bacon, diced
  • 400g sliced mushrooms
  • 100g peas
  • 250g Philadelphia cooking cream (I use light)
  • 1 TBS wholegrain mustard

Season and brown the chicken pieces in a little olive oil over a high heat. Set aside. Fry the bacon and mushrooms until cooked and add the chicken pieces back in. Stir in the cooking cream and the mustard. Simmer until the chicken is mostly cooked, and add the peas for the last few minutes so it gently steams without being overcooked.

Serve with steamed veggies and salad. Comes to 370 calories per serve (approximate).