Friday, January 22, 2016

Homemade Earl Grey Macarons - Round 2

A tray of earl grey macarons filled with earl grey butttercream made by Lillian from Beyond Umami

I was looking through some of my previous macaron recipes on the blog and by far my Earl Grey Macaron Recipe is one of the most popular recipes here on the blog. I also get the most number of orders for this flavour as well as requests from family and friends to bring Earl Grey Macarons for dessert. So, I thought I should do an update on this Earl Grey Macaron recipe as it has been almost 2 years since I first blogged the first one.

The changes aren't huge, just tiny aspects of my recipe that I have tweaked as I bake this particular flavour more often. One difference is that when I first blogged this Earl Grey Macaron recipe Dan and I had just moved and hence the oven was still fairly new to me. At the time, I was not nearly adventurous as I am now about making changes to my macaron recipe; especially baking times and temperatures!  Since as the old saying goes, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!" I finally got tired of how long the macarons were taking to bake so decided to risk it and make some changes. I would say the results are fantastic! So, here is the recipe I'm currently using. I'll show you the steps as we go along for you to make the most successful earl grey macarons at home.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Smoked Havarti Phyllo Spinach Bundles



Now that it is a new year, many of you, like me, may still be hosting or attending the occasional party. Arla Dofino Havarti contacted me to try out some of their havarti cheeses and to create a recipe. I'm not sure about you but I love appetizers and for some reason I am in love with spinach dip! So in creating a recipe to use the havarti cheeses I decided combine my love of spinach dip and appetizers together. Add in some smoked havarti to the mix and your appetizers will truly be the hit of the party! 

The Arla Dofino Havarti line has 5 different flavours - JalapeƱo, Creamy, Dill, Herbs & Spices and Smoked.  You can find it at most stores here in Canada and they come in various sizes. Smaller blocks for a cheese board or big cylinder ones to use for lunches and other recipes.



Smoked Havarti Phyllo Spinach Bundles 

You only need a few ingredients to make this recipe, some patience with those slightly finicky phyllo pastry sheets and the Smoked Havarti from the Arla Dofino line.

Ingredients

  • 1 block (250g) Cream Cheese
  • 150g Frozen Spinach 
  • 120g Smoked Havarti
  • 1/2 cup Melted butter (more might be needed)
Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 375F. Grate the smoked havarti and set aside.
  2. Whip the cream cheese with the whip attachment in a stand-up mixer or hand mixer until light and fluffy. Add in the frozen spinach. It will look a bit wet but that is okay.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Food Resolutions 2016!


Wow! It is already a week into 2016 and it feels like time is flying by already! Before it goes by any faster I wanted to share with you some Food Resolutions that I have made. So, what are Food Resolutions? To me, food resolutions are food goals but more particular because they are goals that encourage me to explore creating different types of food. Perhaps even food that I have dabbled in already but not fully! 

Here are my personal food resolutions:

  • Learn how to bake bread: If you follow me on my other social media accounts such as twitter or instagram you may have noticed that Dan, my husband, has definitely excelled in that area. I have also contributed by buying him the Bread Baker's Apprentice, Tartine and most recently Tartine Book No. 3. However, I feel that it is now high time for me to learn how to do this myself! 
  • Cook through the Duchess Bake Shop Cookbook. I am fully aware that this may take me more than a year, but I am excited to try my hand at baking every single recipe in their cookbook! I am also thinking that I will need to alternate through different category types (e.g. Cookies, Pies, Tarts etc..) rather than recipes sequentially in order to not be making just pies or tarts for weeks at a time. Although I am sure that will be tasty, some variety will be necessary! 
  • Macarons: Don't worry, I have not forgotten about macarons! I do hope to try creating more different types of macarons this year. If you have any suggestions on which flavours you would like to see up on the blog leave a comment below! 
Resolutions with Dan. In case you don't know, both Dan and I love to make food in the kitchen together. It should come as no surprise that Dan and I also have some food resolutions for what we want to cook together in 2016. When we got married in 2011, we received the French Laundry cookbook as a wedding gift. We hope to make around 12 recipes from the book over this year.  Dan also has a bunch of his own food goals and he'll be starting to guest-write on the blog soon! So look out for his posts at the end of each month! 

We also have some food goal plans with some of our friends. Without revealing too much, we are going to try making some the hardest desserts to make. Wish us all luck!

Do you have any food resolutions for 2016? Was there anything you always wanted to know how to make? Share in the comments below!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Ravioli Al Uovo Recipe


I was looking through some of my archived photos and realized that I had a whole slew of photos that I had not yet blogged about! These home made Ravioli Al Uovo or sometimes called Uova da Raviolo (Ravioli with an Egg inside) pictures were a subset of these 'forgotten' photos. The reason we made these (during the summer of 2014!) was that our friend Addie was back in Edmonton and wanted to cook a meal together. As I recall, that summer we had already made these Ravioli Al Uovo once or twice since they were popping up in all sorts of food magazines and restaurants. Addie had been baking a lot of bread and cheese that summer, but hadn't had a chance yet to make these Ravioli Al Uovo.   
One fun "behind the scene" fact is that these photos aren't actually taken at our place, but at a fellow food blogger's home Michelle (over at The Tiffin Box)Addie was cat sitting at her place for a bit that summer (thanks Michelle for the gorgeous table and plates that show up in these photos). 
The ingredients for these delicious pockets of goodness are just a few, but when all combined together they can only be categorized as good food done right. You definitely need to make your own pasta for these Ravioli Al Uovo as fresh pasta just makes it taste that much better! We also used Heritage Eggs from our adopted chicken (you can read more about our experience here) for making these as the heritage eggs not only lend the dish their gorgeous golden yolk but make each bite taste wholesomely good.

Ingredients
  • One ball of Beyond Umami's homemade pasta dough (with a handy Ratio Calculator for Eggs to Flour that Dan made)
  • Egg yolks (1 per ravioli)
  • 1-2 cups of Ricotta cheese (1 small tub)
  • 1 lemon 
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • freshly grated pecorino romano

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Chocolate Meringues Kisses



'Tis the season to bring sweet treats to your place of work, christmas functions or to a friend's place. Today's blog post is for those that want to make an impressive and easy but equally tasty dessert. These chocolate meringue kisses, like macarons, uses egg whites. You still end up making a meringue, but they are less finicky compared to macarons. 

To start all you need is 4 ingredients, one kitchen appliance (stand up mixer or hand mixer) and one piping bag fitted with a tip. 

Ingredients

  • (57 g) 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
  • 33g 72% dark chocolate callets 
Notes:
  • I used dark chocolate callets but you could easily use mini chocolate chips. As long as they can fit through the piping tip than it should be fine. 
Directions

  1. Using a knife chop your chocolate callets as fine as possible. 

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