What the World Eats

There is a great series of photos by Peter Menzel, Faith D’Aluisio for their book Hungry Planet: What the World Eats.

You can see 12 of them here

They are well worth a browse. I found it fascinating trying to guess the countries by the food and the people.

Triple-choc Brownies

Thomas made these for the first time and they are prefect. I think he’s scared to try again..

Triple-choc Brownies

Need:

  • 300g butter, chopped
  • 3/4 cup Baking cocoa
  • 3 cups brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 1/4 cups plain flour
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup white Choc bits
  • 1/2 cup milk Choc bits

Icing

  • 1 x 200g block cooking chocolate, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cream

Instructions:

  1. Grease a 20cm x 30cm lamington pan; line base and two long opposite sides with baking paper extending paper 5cm above edge of pan.
  2. Combine butter and cocoa in medium pan; stir over a low heat, until butter is melted. Add sugar, mix well. Remove from heat ; stir in sifted flour, eggs and choc bits. Pour mixture into prepared pan.
  3. Cook in moderate oven, 180C, for about 35 minutes, or unti just set. Cool in pan.
  4. Icing. Combine chocolate and cream in a small pan; Stir over a low heat until chocolate is melted. Transer to medium bowl. Cover, refridge, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes, or until icing is a spreadable consistency.
  5. Spread icing over brownie, refridge until set before cutting into squares.

Herb and Mushroom Quiche

Self-crusting Herb and Mushroom Quiche

  • 2 medium sized onions
  • 2 tablespoons oil or butter
  • 200g mushrooms
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ¾ cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup self-raising flour
  • ½ cup grated tasty cheese

Slice onions finely. Sauté in the oil or butter, when soft add the mushrooms and cook until these soften too. Add the basil, thyme and black pepper, and then remove from the heat and leave to stand while preparing the egg mixture.

In a medium-sized bowl lightly beat together the eggs, sour cream, milk and salt. Sprinkle the flour over this mixture and stir just enough to combine, and then add the grated cheese, again stirring just enough to mix.

Butter a 25-30cm flan or pie dish. Tip in the onion and mushroom mixture, and spread it evenly over the bottom, then pour the batter evenly over this.

Bake at 220C foe 20-30 minutes, until light brown and firm in the centre. Cool for 10-15 minutes before turning out.

Serve with fresh tomatoes and a green salad.

Cupcakes

I made cupcakes. They didn’t turn out as well as they should have because I forgot to put the little paper containers inside a proper muffin tin so they kind of went a bit long and flat.

I’ve made marvelous cupcakes with this recipe before though so I thought I’d share it anyway.

Cupcakes

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 150grams unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.

2. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl.

3. In a separate, larger bowl, cream the butter. Gradually add the sugar, creaming until light and fluffy.

4. Add the eggs one at a time, and beat well after each addition.

5. In a small bowl, combine the milk and vanilla.

6. To the butter mixture, add about one quarter of the flour mixture and mix well. Add about one quarter of the milk mixture and mix well. Continue alternating the flour mixture and milk mixture, beating after each addition until smooth.

7. Pour the batter into the cupcake tins. (and put these inside a supporting muffin tin!!) Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the cake springs back when touched.

8. Remove from oven and let cool for about 10 minutes, then turn the cupcakes out of the tins and onto a rack to finish cooling completely.

Makes approximately 14-18 cupcakes.

Potato, Kidney bean, Carrot, Corn and Leek Patty

Thomas is in raptures over this one, he has even offered to share the burger making crown.

Hamburgers with Potato, Kidney bean, Carrot, Corn and Leek Patty

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup canned kidney beans
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 leek, sliced
  • 3 potatoes, grated
  • 1 cup corn
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • oil for frying

potatoburgersmall.jpg

PREPARATION:

Mash the beans with a fork or a potato masher. Add the remaining ingredients, except the oil and mix until well combined.
Shape the mixture into patties.

Heat about two tablespoons of olive oil and cook each patty at a medium/high until the veggie burgers are done, about 3 minutes on each side.

Serve on nice soft white rolls (toasted) with lettuce, tomato, mustard, tomato sauce and feta dressing.

I changed the recipe around a bit to fit in with what we had in our cupboard, The original recipe can be found here:

Veggie Burger Recipes

Carrot Cake

I found this recipe on the Food Network. I changed a couple of things and added a cream cheese icing. For surely, a carrot cake without cream cheese icing isn’t a carrot cake..

Carrot Cake

  • 2 1/2 cups grated carrot
  • 1 1/2 cups walnut pieces
  • 1 cup chopped pineapple, fresh or canned
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • Powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.

In a large mixing bowl, toss together the carrots, walnuts, pineapple and raisins with 1/2 cup of the flour to coat them and keep them from sinking to the bottom of the cake batter.

Sift together the remaining 1 1/2 cups flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt.

In a mixer with a whip attachment, mix the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy (the “ribbon” stage) then drizzle in the vegetable oil. Fold in the dry ingredients and pour over the carrot mixture. Fold carefully to blend, then pour the batter into a buttered, floured 10 by 3-inch cake pan containing a circle of parchment paper in the bottom. Bake until firm to the touch in the center, about 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Let cool on a rack and then turn out. Dust the top with powdered sugar and cut into wedges to serve. (or use Cream Cheese Icing).

Cream Cheese Icing

  • 2 pkg. (3 oz. each) cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tbsp. cream
  • 1 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp.salt
  • 1 lb. confectioners sugar
  • Lemon (optional)

Beat together cream cheese and cream; stir in vanilla. Beat 5 to 7 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add salt and sugar, one cup at a time, blending well after each addition

Chocolate Cake

This is an excellent chocolate cake recipe when you want a tasty chocolate cake that doesn’t go overboard with sweetness++

Mrs Doran’s Chocolate Cake

  • 100gm butter
  • 2 dessert spoons of golden syrup
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 1/2 cups of flour
  • 2 table spoons of Cocoa
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence

Melt: 100gm butter, 2 dsp golden syrup, 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup milk.

Remove from heat and cool slightly. Add 1+1/2 cups flour, 2 tbsp cocoa and vanilla essence.
Dissolve 1 tsp baking soda in 1/2 cup warm milk. Add to the rest of the ingredients. Pour into tin.

Bake for 30mins (maybe more) at 180deg.

Ice with chocolate icing.

Sticky Date Pudding

I discovered Sticky Date Puddings while living in Australia. The Aussies are mad on them, I can see/taste why!

Sticky Date Pudding

  • Ingredients (10 servings)
  • 125 g butter
  • 225 g stoned dates
  • 1 tbs baking soda
  • 5 tbs sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 ts salt
  • 1 ts vanilla
  • 1 ts baking powder
  • butter for painting
  • caramel sauce:
  • 1 cup cream
  • 125 g butter
  • 115 g brown sugar
  • 1 ts vanilla

whipped cream:
1/2 liter whipping cream

Instructions

Chop dates, put in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and leave at low heat for 3 minutes.

Keep date water for use soon. Remove dates from water and add baking soda to them.

Whip 125g of butter with sugar, and add the eggs one at a time.

Gently mix in flour, salt and vanilla. Add baking powder and some of the water from the dates until it resembles pancake dough. Add dates.

Bake at 200° C for about 40 minutes – or until finished.

Topping:

Meanwhile mix the rest of the butter, cream, sugar and vanilla in a pot. Bring to a boil and leave for low heat for 3 minutes. Pour some of the sauce over the cake while it is cooling. Serve the rest of the sauce with the cake.

You can put whipped cream on the cake.

Warning, small servings!

chocolate a l’ancienne (old-fashioned hot chocolate)

I may have gone on about how nice the hot chocolate that thomas made the other night was…

chocolate a l’ancienne

  • 6 ounces of real dark chocolate
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons creme fraiche
  • 2 1/4 cups milk
  • 1 tablespoon superfine sugar (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons dark rum (Thomas used Brandy)
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons cold espresso coffee
  • pinch of salt

To make the grated chocolate decoration, put the chocolate in the freezer for 2 hours to harden. Grate about 3/4 ounce with a sharp knife or a potato peeler.

Beat the creme fraiche with an electric mixer, until stiff but not butter! Chill until you are ready to serve the chocolate.

Finely chop the remaining chocolate and place in a saucepan with the salt and 3 1/2 tablespoons of water. Melt over low heat, stirring constantly; take great care that it does not burn or the flavour will be ruined. When the chocolate is smooth and shiny, stir in the milk and then the sugar, if using. Bring to a boil, then simmer 5 minutes: Be very careful, because the chocolate bubbles up and thickens rapidly. Stir in the rum and coffee, and boil 2 minutes longer. Beat the chocolate with a whisk to lighten.

When ready to serve, add a spoonful of the whipped creme fraiche and top with the grated chocolate. In the summer, this is delicious served chilled.

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm! Try it, it’s worth it.

Big Soft Ginger Cookies

We made Ginger Cookies a few (well, quite a few) times while staying in an apartment near Lake Atitlan, Guatemala. Ginger cookies will forever remind me of our holiday there. Along with beans, eggs and rice and banana smoothies.

Ginger Cookies

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup margarine, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Sift together the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the margarine and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, then stir in the water and molasses. Gradually stir the sifted ingredients into the molasses mixture. Shape dough into walnut sized balls, and roll them in the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar. Place the cookies 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet, and flatten slightly.
  3. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

Notes:

I could’t get molasses so I used brown sugar.
I added more ginger. I love ginger.