Harak Mas Curry – Beef Curry from Sri Lanka

Harak Mas Curry – Beef Curry from Sri Lanka 2

The first time I prepared this curry was about 20 years ago following the instruction of the book wrote by Charmaine Solomon. In the meantime I completed the recipe (see spice mix recipe added) and I adapted it to the ingredient we have. This serves 2-4 peoples depending on the other dishes added.

Sri Lankan cuisine has influences from the Kerala region of India and from Tamil Nadu. Main ingredients are rice, coconut and especially spices, reflecting the island’s history as a spice producer and trading post over several centuries.

With dish includes beef which is widely used in Sri Lanka as the main religion (70% of population) is Buddhism and it allows to eat beer/cow.

This gentle curry with homemade Ceylon curry powder is very hot (depends also on the kind of cayenne you use) and my guest were always delighted by this dish and asked me the recipe.

Once more the list of the ingredients is long, but if you prepared all the ingredients first you will see that the preparation is fast. What you need is more time for simmering as the meat need a few hours.

Harak Mas Curry – Beef Curry from Sri Lanka

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Time: 30 minutes preparation and 2 hr cooking
  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

Harak Mas Curry – Beef Curry from Sri Lanka

Main dish

  • 2 tablespoons ghee
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ginger, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Sri Lankan curry powder (see added instructions)
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander ground
  • 1 teaspoons black mustard seeds
  • 750 g beef, for stew diced into 2 cm pieces
  • 2 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped (or 1 can chopped tomatoes)
  • 1 fresh chili, seeded and chopped

Sri Lankan curry powder

  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 3 cardamom pods
  • 3 cloves
  • 1/2 small cinnamon stick, broken into small pieces
  • 3 dried curry leaves
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

Procedure

  1. If you don’t have the basic Sri Lankan curry mixture, prepare it yourself: roast dry (without oil) coriander, cumin, fennel fenugreek, cardamom, cloves and cinnamon. Grind the roasted mixture with the curry leaves. Mix in the cayenne. Store in an air tight jar.
  2. In a medium pot with lid heat the ghee, add onion, ginger and garlic. Fry until onions get soft.
  3. Add the spices (curry, turmeric, coriander and mustard seeds) and fry at low heat until spices get fragrant.
  4. Add meat, toss until coated and fry a few minutes on all sides.
  5. Add vinegar and salt. Cook until liquid is adsorbed.
  6. Add tomatoes and chili, stir well, adjust salt if necessary.
  7. Cover and let simmer at low heat until meat is tender. This takes about 2 hours. Check from time to time if you have to add some water.
  8. Serve with rotis, naans or rice with a vegetables dish.

Twisted Cherry Chocolate Bread

Twisted Cherry Chocolate Bread 6

Last year was a berries year for us, spring is here and we still have a lot of cherries in the freezer.

I took I package out of the freezer and placed it over a colander in the kitchen to defrost. During this time I made my search for a new recipe, something completely new to use these delicious fruits.

Finally I find the solution I needed, not a recipe from the internet or from the books, since a combination of many ideas.

  • The dough from an apple bread
  • Adding cacao powder and more sugar to the recipe
  • Making the dough dairy free: oil instead of butter
  • Using the liquid of the cherries instead of milk for the dough (no waste, diary free)
  • New kind of filling: I love the combination of cherries and cinnamon¨
  • Glazing the bread with a clear glaze first to make it shine
  • Creating a new pink glaze with cherry juice and lemon (diary free again)

With this portion I prepared two rings (one for special giveaway) but you can prepare simply a bigger one and bake it for about 40-45 minutes.

The result is a not too sweet diary free and beautiful bread!

Twisted Cherry Chocolate Bread

  • Servings: 2 small loaves or one big loaf
  • Time: 4hr
  • Difficulty: medium
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Twisted Cherry Chocolate Bread 3

You need

  • 700 g frozen cherries

Dough

  • 3 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup dried potato flakes (as for puree)
  • 1/3 cup sugar (more if you prefer it sweeter)
  • 2 teaspoons dry yeast, if possible instant (if not proof the yeast first)
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoon cacao powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup cherry water, from drained defrosted cherries (if not enough fill with water to 1 cup)

 Filling

  • 2 cups defrosted cherries (about 350-400 g), drained
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Clear glaze

  • 1 tablespoon hot water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Pink glaze (alternative melted chocolate)

  • 1 tablespoon juice from cherries
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Procedure

  1. Place your cherries to defrost at room temperature, drain and reserve the juice. (I necessary fasten this step with the microwave). You will need I cup of liquid for the dough and you should reserve 1 tablespoon in a small cup for the pink glaze. Add the lemon to the reserved tablespoon of liquid for the glaze because this prevents oxidation and turning brown of the liquid.
  2. Combine all the ingredient for the dough and work if possible with kneading machine. Be sure you add one cup of liquid (cherry juice with some water to fill to volume). Knead until very smooth.
  3. In a cup combine all the ingredients for the filling and toss.
  4. Divide the dough into two portions. Roll out each portion to a rectangle of about 25 cm (10 inches) to 60 cm (22 inches).
  5. Spread on each rectangle half portion of filling. Roll out tightly from the longer side.
  6. Transfer to a cutting surface and using a pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut the log in half lengthwise. Twist the two logs together forming a round or let it in straight, place on a baking tray or baking mold. Be sure to pinch well the ends together. Repeat with the second portion. Don’t worry if some of the filling will drop off, you can push the cherries between the dough layers when the logs are arranged on the baking tray. Note: I plaited them into the round shape for a new and cute looking!
  7. Place in a warm place for about 1-2 hour to rise until almost doubled. I use my kitchen oven light on / temperature off.
  8. Take loaves out of the oven, and preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.
  9. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until you see they take color and get darker.
  10. While bread is baking combine the ingredients for the clear glaze. Mix until sugar is dissolved.
  11. Remove the bread from the oven and immediately brush with the clear glaze. This will give the shine.
  12. Let cool down for about 30 minutes.
  13. In the meantime combine the ingredients for the pink glaze: combine in a bowl the baking powder with so much liquid (cherry juice with lemon juice) until you get a dense batter that can be dropped Drizzle over the loaves (I simply used a teaspoon for this step).
  14. Let cool down completely before slicing.

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Wild Yeast Naan

Wild Yeast Naan

Naan are very popular leavened flatbreads eaten not only in India, but also in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Iran and other surrounding Countries.

Today we can find different variations with different toppings or fillings. They are delicious served hot and brushed with ghee (or butter) and, for those who love it, with garlic.

The traditional way to cook these breads in the tandoor oven, a clay oven heated by a charcoal fire at the bottom, where the naan were pressed on the walls for cooking

The main ingredients usually consists of yeast, all-purpose flour, warm water, sugar, salt, ghee and yoghurt.

Trying to imagine how in the villages the naan were cooked I imagined that the kind of yeast available could be wild yeast.

I found that it’s possible to prepare the sourdough starter simply after combining some yogurt, flour, salt and sugar and fermenting it overnight; BUT in this case for the final dough baking powder was added. The result may be delicious but I really wanted to prepare my naan without commercial yeast or baking powder.

I still have my sourdough starter (which needed to be refreshed), this was my choice.

The naans puffed very well and in contrast to the recipe with commercial yeast, the flavor was more “floury” and less “bready”! I can’t say which ones are the best, we loved both!

Wild Yeast Naan

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Time: 1hr preparation + 18 hrs resting time
  • Difficulty: medium
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Wild Yeast Naan

You need

  • 100 g sourdough starter, 100% hydration (If you don’t have it: replace with 50 g flour + 50 ml water and 1/2 teaspoon yeast)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 150 g flour
  • 130 ml lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon plain yogurt
  • 150 g flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Ghee or butter, for brushing (optional)

Procedure

  1. Combine sourdough starter, sugar, 150 g flour water and yogurt in a bowl, stir well and let rise for a few hours until almost doubled but best overnight.
  2. Add the other 150 g flour and salt, knead until smooth. Oil the surface of the dough and the sides if the bowl so that the dough don’t stick to the wall.
  3. Let rest 20-30 minutes.
  4. With oiled hands shape tennis ball sized balls (you can also make bigger naans).

Kolokythokeftedes – Greek Zucchini and Feta Balls

kolokythokeftes

The surprising warm sunny evening of the first spring days was perfect for this kind of meal: zucchini balls with their herbed smell, yogurt sauce, fresh tomatoes and homemade bread (thawed in the oven just before serving) and some Greek wine make us feel at least a little bit like in vacations on Crete. Perhaps a frugal but wonderful tasty dinner!

Note: I know that these zucchini balls are usually fried and served as fritters, but as I don’t like the oily smells in the kitchen, I prefer to bake them in the oven; this works pretty well and it is easier to have them ready at once when you need them.

Kolokythokeftedes – Greek Zucchini and Feta Balls

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 1 hr 30mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

kolokythokeftes

You need:

  • 3 medium zucchini
  • 1 tablespoon salt (for the preparation of the zucchini
  • 1-2 green onions, sliced or chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • 20 mint leaves, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest, grated
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs, adjust quantity if necessary
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 splash ouzo. optional
  • 1/4 cup of feta, crumbled
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • oil for shaping

Procedure:

  1. Roughly grate the zucchini in a bowl and toss them with the salt.
  2. Place the grated zucchini in a sieve over a bowl and let stand at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour. Rinse zucchini under current water and squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
  3. Place zucchini in medium bowl. Add green onions, dill, mint, garlic, lemon peel, and 1 pepper. Gently stir in breadcrumbs, flour, egg, ouzo and then feta. If the mixture is too wet add more breadcrumbs. Adjust with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Oil your hands and using 1 tablespoon zucchini mixture for each, shape balls and place them on baking sheet. You can prepare these ahead, place them in the fridge to chill until you need to cook them.
  5. Preheat the oven to 220°C/ 420°F. Bake for about 15-20 minutes until golden.
  6. Serve warm, lukewarm or cold.

Tiramisù with Amaretto

Tiramisù is famous and delicious Italian dessert based on layers of a cream with mascarpone and raw eggs combined with biscuits soaked in a coffee based mix.

Tiramisù means “pull me up”; perhaps because this is full of energetic ingredients (proteins in eggs and cheese) and/or since it contains alcohol as well as cocoa and caffeine.

If you have concerns about raw egg whites, be sure to use the freshest (and highest quality) eggs possible.

For those who don’t trust the origin of their eggs I saw recipes where eggs yolks were beaten in a pot over steam (double boiler) in order to deactivate the possible salmonella germs and the egg whites are substituted by beaten heavy cream. I never had to take this precautions, but I would like to post this here because I know that “safe-eggs” are not everywhere available. The choice is yours!

This recipe is characterized by the flavor of amaretto liqueur and maraschino; do you prefer a dessert without alcohol? Add more coffee and add some bitter almond extract.

As always I fully agree when my recipes are taken as base, as suggestion or as inspiration. I really appreciate when my reviewers post their suggestions and their experience.

I’m used to prepare a quite soft and creamy version of tiramisu, if you prefer a more solid one, you only have to layer more biscuits (about 40 pieces) as in my version.

I tried find something about the history of tiramisu`, but as the real origins are not confirmed I prefer to post here simply some links:

http://whatscookingamerica.net/History/Cakes/Tiramisu.htm

http://italianfood.about.com/od/spoondesserts/a/aa072307.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiramisu

STiramisù with Amaretto

  • Servings: 8
  • Time: 30 mins preparation and 6 hours resting
  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

Tiramisù 2

You need:

  • 100 ml espresso coffee, freshly brewed
  • 2 tablespoon sugar for dipping
  • 2 tablespoons amaretto liqueur (alternative: more coffee and some bitter almond extract)
  • 2 tablespoons maraschino (alternatives Marsala wine, vermouth, brandy or coffee + bitter almond extract)
  • 4 eggs
  • 200 g sugar
  • 1 lemon, grated zest only (orange zest is delicious as well!)
  • 500 g mascarpone
  • 20-30 Savoiardi Italian ladyfinger (1 package of about 300 g)
  • 1 tablespoon cacao powder to dust

Procedure

  1. Combine in a soup dish coffee, sugar, amaretto and maraschino. Stir to dissolve the sugar
  2. Separate egg yolk form egg whites; egg whites will be placed in a big bowl and yolks in a medium one.
  3. Beat egg whites to stiff peaks, this takes about minutes.
  4. Add sugar and lemon zest to the egg yolks and beat until soft and pale.
  5. Beat in mascarpone until very well combined
  6. Fold under the egg whites.
  7. Pour a few tablespoon of mascarpone-mix on the bottom of your mold (or one tablespoon for a single portion).
  8. Dip quickly the first ladyfinger in the coffee-mix and line over the cream. Repeat until the layer is completed.
  9. Cover with half of the mascarpone-mix.
  10. Dip the remaining biscuits quickly into the coffee-mix and arrange the second layer.
  11. Cover the second layer with the second half of the mascarpone-mix.
  12. Dust with cacao powder
  13. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours before serving.

Filet Mignon Medallions of Beef with Mushrooms and Dried Tomatoes

Filet Mignon Medallions of Beef with Mushrooms and Dried Tomatoes

Filet mignon are also called Chateaubriand, tournedos, filet de boeuf, tenderloin Steak, or fillet steak.

Some year ago my mother collected a newspaper article of a veal roast with the sauce I described in this post and I combined this tenderloin. I tried this recipe with whole beef tenderloin, with medaillons and both turned delicious.

I made and remade this dish, this year I prepared this for Easter adapting once more the recipe and it turned out so perfect that my mother told me these were the best medaillons I’ve ever prepared.

Suggestion: serve this with potatoes, egg noodles, mashed potatoes or with rice. I found out that with yellow saffron risotto this is perfect as well as the mushroom sauce goes perfect with the rice.

Variation: At home we have special oven which allows constant temperature around (80°C). In this case I roast the whole tenderloin in the pan for 4-5 minutes after rubbing it with salt, pepper and grill spices and I place it in in the preheated oven at 80°C. Quickly I prepare the sauce in the skillet were I roasted the meat and when ready I pour the sauce in the mold around the meat, this will keep the meat moist. Baking time at 80°C: about 2 hours for 2 pounds filet. Slice and serve with the sauce.

Filet Mignon Medallions of Beef with Mushrooms and Dried Tomatoes

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 30mins
  • Difficulty: medium
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

Filet Mignon Medallions of Beef with Mushrooms and Dried Tomatoes

You need:

Sauce (double quantity if desired for example as extra sauce for egg noodles)

  • 30 g dried mushrooms (best porcini mushrooms of good quality)
  • 1 cup broth
  • 1 tablespoon butter (or margarine)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon flour
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 spring rosemary
  • 1/2-2/3 cup dried tomatoes in oil with spices
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and pepper

Meat:

  • 1-2 tablespoon vegetal oil
  • 4 slices beef tenderloin (about 2 cm thick)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Procedure:

Sauce:

  1. Place mushrooms in to the warm broth to soak.
  2. Slice tomatoes into strips and set aside.
  3. Add 1 tablespoon butter to a sauce pot.
  4. Add onion and fry until translucent.
  5. Add flour and roast shortly.
  6. Add mushrooms with soaking broth taking care to leave the last spoons water in the cup (potential sandy or small stones sediment).
  7. Add wine and rosemary
  8. Add tomatoes.
  9. Add cream and bring to low simmer
  10. Stir well and adjust with salt and pepper.
  11. Set aside and keep warm.

Meat:

  1. Place a non-sticky skillet over medium high heat until hot (this takes about 4-5 minutes). Add 1-2 tablespoons of vegetal oil (or good margarine with los water content) and tilt it around to cover the pan.
  2. In the meantime rub the meat with salt and pepper.
  3. Place the medallions into the skillet and roast them for 2-3 minutes on the first side. Flip and roast the other side for another 2-3 minutes. This should give you medium-rare medallions.
  4. To test for doneness, cut a small slit into a medallion and peek inside; remember that the meat continues to cook as it rests. Transfer the medallions to a warm platter cover with foil and let them rest in a warm place for 5 min. before serving.

Finishing:

  1. While the meat is resting pour the mushroom sauce into the skillet to dissolve the fond. Bring to boil, remove rosemary and pour in a saucier (bowl for sauce).
  2. Serve the meat topped with the sauce.

Tortilla con Espinacas – Tortilla with Spinach

Tortilla con Espinacas – Tortilla with Spinach 3

Tortilla con Espinacas – Tortilla with Spinach

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 45mins
  • Difficulty: easy-medium
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Tortilla con Espinacas – Tortilla with Spinach 2

You need:

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 500 g potatoes, peeled finely sliced
  • 1 big onion, chopped
  • 500 g spinach, washed and drained
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon salt, to taste
  • 5 eggs

Procedure:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F
  2. Coat your spingfrom (baking mold with removable border) with one tablespoon olive oil. In a bowl toss the potatoes with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Coat the walls of the springfrom with the potatoes overlapping them lightly. Coat the bottom of the mold with remaining slices (no problem if the bottom in not completely covered. Tip: if you have problem to place the potatoes at the border you fix them with some additional slices from at the bottom. You may use more potatoes if you wish or need. You can also use some aluminum foil to keep them standing. Cook in a preheated oven at 200°C/400°F until borders begins to turns lightly brown, this takes about 15 minutes. Remove from oven.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in skillet and fry onion until translucent. Add spinach and cooking stirring frequently until the juices of the spinach are adsorbed/evaporated. Remove from heat place in a bowl and season with nutmeg, pepper and salt. Beat eggs lightly with a fork and add them to the spinach mixture.
  4. Add one third of the mixture (try to take more spinach and less egg) and place them on the bottom of the mold reduce the heat to 180°C/350°F and bake for about 10 minutes. Add the rest of the filling and bake until through for about 15 minutes.

Let cool down partially before removing the border of the springform and transfer the tortilla to a platter for serving.

Tortilla con Espinacas – Tortilla with Spinach 2

Stifado – Greek Beef Stew

Stifado - Greek Beef Stew

Long time ago during you honeymoon trip we traveled for the first time form island to island on Greece. It during our island-hopping that we discovered this warming and comforting dish than can be prepared ahead.

With many other souvenirs we came home with souvenir of this dish and we had to make it for us at home and became one of our favorites!

We made it thousands of times, perhaps for this reason I never wrote down the recipe: I know to make it. Well, every time is different, every time I add or skip something and this dish was never boring for us. As side dish I think I like most plain bulgur, but with rice, small pasta (best orzo also called risoni) or simply some rustic bread works perfect with this tasty dish.

Cinnamon is magic in this dish, I only use the cinnamon I buy in Greece as the quality is so much better, and wine. Don’t skip the wine! Bay leaves are essential for my taste as well!

Other possible additions are oregano, allspice, cloves, rosemary, orange peel and cumin! Cumin gives a completely different note to the stifado and as long you like cumin it is excellent as well.

Lagos stifado (hare, Λαγός στιφάδο) and kuneli stifado (rabbit, Κουνέλι στιφάδο) were probably the original and perhaps better recipe versions of this dish, but beef is very common and I usually have some in the freezer so that I can prepare this anytime. Hare and rabbit were marinated overnight with wine and spices!

I will give you here my basic recipe, the amounts are approximately and for most people I think the quantity of meat have to be doubled.

Feel free to adapt the quantities of meat, onions and spices selection as you like.

You can add carrots and celery as well as other vegetables as well.

You can cook this also in the slow cooker for about 6 hours.

Stifado – Greek Beef Stew

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 2hr 30mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

Stifado - Greek Beef Stew

You need:

  • 2-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 500-800 g beef, diced for stew
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1 cans chopped tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 piece (about 5 cm) cinnamon
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • Spices of choice (oregano, allspice, cloves, rosemary or cumin), quantity to taste, optional
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 5-8 onions about the same weight as the meat

Procedure:

  1. In the pot heat the oil and fry the meat pieces together with the diced onion until browned on all sides. If the pot is not wide enough fry this into two batches in order to avoid liquids on the bottom of the pot.
  2. Add vinegar, wine, tomatoes, water bay leaves, cinnamon, garlic and other spices.
  3. Bring to boil, add parsley, sugar and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Peel the onions, trim as less as possible as they should not fall apart during cooking.
  5. Place onions over meat and sauce. Cover and cook at low heat until tender. Usually this takes about two hours.
  6. If there is still too much liquid before serving remove cover and let cook until you get the consistence you like.

Wild Garlic Bread Star

 

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Baking bread is one of my favorite chapter of cooking and I’m addict to collect wild herbs and flowers for my experiments in the kitchen.

It’s April and finally the wild garlic is here and ready to be used. There a many of possibilities to use it and this year I really wanted to prepare something new with it.

My choice was a star bread; this kind of bread is often prepared with sweet fillings (for example chocolate cream) but with savory recipes this works at least as well and it’s decorative. The preparation of this bread is not difficult and doesn’t require special skills; to help you I took several photos of the steps. As usual to roll out the dough and transfer the dough to the tray and keep the form and size I use my silicon mat. This is the easiest way for me! The bread came out BEAUTIFUL and so aromatic! Best eat it fresh or still warm from the oven!

In my previous post I posted a pesto sauce with wild garlic and avocado, but in this recipe I will prepare a simple (without avocado) pesto sauce.

I plan to go to the forest again, pick more wild garlic and prepare more wild garlic pesto for the next breads. I combine olive oil, wild garlic, salt and pepper. For preservation the best and safest way is to freeze it, but adding more salt and covering the surface with olive oil, it can be stored in the closed jar in a dark and chilly place for a short time (http://www.eatweeds.co.uk/wild-garlic-in-oil).

Note:

Wild garlic (Allium ursinum, Bear’s garlic) is a wonderful chive cousin and is a very popular European species of garlic. Wild garlic pesto can be used as alternative to basil pesto as addition to pasta, tomato sauces and much more. Pick up the leaves before it had bloomed as apparently the leaves get really bitter after that point. Wild garlic can be confused with Lily of the Valley, autumn crocus and arum which are poisonous. If you have any doubt about your plant, do not eat it. The easiest way to tell if you have wild garlic or not is just to pick a small bit of leaf and rub it between your fingers. In the USA, ramp (Allium tricoccum), a wild plant with more onion-like flavor, is used for similar purposes.

If you don’t have wild garlic, use garlic chives or green garlic leaves, I would add few basil leaves as well; it’s not the same but a variation!

Wild Garlic Bread Star

  • Servings: 4-8
  • Time: 2hr 30mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

Wild Garlic Bread Star 11s

You need:

Dough

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon instant dried yeast
  • 1/2 cup water, lukewarm
  • 1/4 cup milk, lukewarm
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Filling (pesto)

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 40 wild garlic leaves, cut with scissors into 1-2 cm pieces
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • Pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup almonds roughly chopped

Topping

  • 8 whole almonds
  • 1 tablespoon almonds roughly chopped

Procedure:

Dough:

  1. If you are using instant dry yeast combine all the ingredients for the dough and work them (best with kneading machine or food processor) until smooth. If you are not sure about your yeast, combine the water, 2 tablespoons of flour, add yeast and mix well; after 10-20 minutes it should be foamy and you can add the rest of the ingredients.
  2. Cover and place in a warm place while you prepare the pesto.

Filling (pesto):

  1. Pour olive oil in your food processor and add wild garlic leaves in portions until you get a paste, this does not need to be like puree. Add salt and pepper, mix shortly.

Assembling and forming:

  1. Divide the dough into to portions and form two balls.
  2. Roll out the firs dough (using my mat I don’t need flour, but if you work directly on the table you will need flour to roll out) to the size of about 35-40 cm of diameter. Place the round on a baking tray.
  3. Spread the pesto over the dough leaving about 2 cm of the border free. Top with almonds.
  4. Roll out the second round and place it over the first one with pesto. Press border with your fingers.
  5. Place a small glass or coffee cup to mark the center.
  6. Cutting from the marked circle (small glass) divide the cake into quarters, divide every quarter into two (now you have 8 parts) and once more again. At the end you should have 16 equal parts.
  7. Take two parts of the cake in both hands and delicately twist twice them in opposite directions. Stick the two ends together. Repeat with all pairs to form eight-armed star.
  8. Place the almonds (roughly chopped) for the topping in the center and if you like decorate with some whole ones as well.
  9. Place the tray into the cold oven and place a bowls with warm water into the oven to keep warm and for the humidity. If you have the possibility switch on the light of your oven. This will improve rising.
  10. After 1-2 hours the star should have doubled the size. Take out of the oven and preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F-
  11. Bake for about 20 minutes at 180°C/350°F or until the bread is golden.
  12. Let cool down on a wire rack or enjoy it still warm!

Avocado, Wild Garlic and Pistachio Pesto

Avocado, Wild Garlic and Pistachio Pesto

I remember the first time I tried avocado: a shop assistant of a supermarket welcomed the clients with a tray full of pieces of beautiful green plain avocado prepared with toothpicks. Well, I did not find them really tasty and texture not really “special”.

Only a few years later, while travelling, I discovered how good avocados are transformed into guacamole and other sauces.

For this recipe I decided to blend together green ingredients and create a new pesto and try to take an almost monochromatic photo without forgetting the main purpose of the recipe: good food!

The main green ingredients are avocado, wild garlic and pistachio, but in this recipe we have more green ones because I also added olive oil, green chili, green peppercorns and lime zest.

I allowed only two exceptions, two white ingredients which don’t affect the color, but will enhance it by the taste, structure and make this sauce even more delectable: salt and Parmesan cheese.

Note:

Wild garlic (Allium ursinum, Bear’s garlic, or Bärlauch in German) is a wonderful chive cousin and is a very popular European species of garlic. Wild garlic pesto can be used as alternative to basil pesto as addition to pasta, tomato sauces and much more. Pick up the leaves before it had bloomed as apparently the leaves get really bitter after that point. Wild garlic can be confused with Lily of the Valley, autumn crocus and arum which are poisonous. If you have any doubt about your plant, do not eat it. The easiest way to tell if you have wild garlic or not is just to pick a small bit of leaf and rub it between your fingers. In the USA, ramp (Allium tricoccum), a wild plant with more onion-like flavor, is used for similar purposes.

If you don’t have wild garlic, use garlic chives or green garlic leaves, I would add few basil leaves as well; it’s not the same but a variation!

Avocado, Wild Garlic and Pistachio Pesto

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 45 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

Avocado, Wild Garlic and Pistachio Pesto

Pesto:

  • 1 avocados (quantity depends on the size)
  • 40 wild garlic leaves, cut with scissors into 1-2 cm pieces
  • 1 green chili, seeded and chopped (or quantity to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon preserved green peppercorns (in brine)
  • 1/2 lime zest
  • 1/2 lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste
  • ¼ cup olive oil, to taste

Pasta

  • 400-500 g pasta, your favorite, cooked al dente

Topping to serve

  • 4 tablespoons pistachio, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • Parmesan cheese, grated to taste
  • Lime slices as desired

Preparation

  1. Combine all the ingredients for the pesto in a food processor and pulse until smooth and almost creamy. If necessary add little olive oil.
  2. Cook your favorite pasta in hot salted water, staring add little olive oil and place in a big bowls.
  3. Immediately add pesto, stir until well combined.
  4. To serve top with pistachios, drizzle some olive oil and sprinkle some fresh grated Parmesan.
  5. Serve with lime slices if desired.

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