Salmon Kedgeree

A kedgeree is often thought of as breakfast here in the UK but I prefer mine as a main course. Lots of kedgeree recipes use cold smoked haddock – which is delicious – but I had only smoked salmon on hands, and this substitution didn’t disappointed. It’s a quick dish, it’s easy, it’s filling … but most importantly it’s delicious and good for you.

Salmon Kedgeree

SALMON KEDGEREE

Ingredients:

300g cooked brown rice

50g butter

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, chopped

1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

1 1/2 teaspoon mild curry powder

200g frozen peas

4 eggs

225g smoked salmon, cut into chunks or flaked

4 spring onions, finely shredded

bunch of fresh coriander/parsley, roughly chopped

juice of 1 lime

Method:

  1. In a frying pan, heat up the oil, butter and add the onion. Fry for 5 minutes, then add the spices and fry for a further 3 minutes.
  2. Add cooked rice and peas, splash of water (if required), cover with lid and cook for 10 minutes, or until the rice is tender and the peas are cooked.
  3. Meanwhile cook the eggs how you like them (I personally prefer soft-boiled or poached).
  4. When rice is done, mix in the salmon, spring onions, coriander and lime juice. Taste, season it and top with the halves soft-boiled eggs.

Salmon Kedgeree

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Sweet & Savoury Cheese & Apple Muffins

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It was love at first bite! Once you’ve made them, I’m sure you’ll be making them again and again. The combination of apple and cheese will satisfy your sweet and savoury cravings in the same bite with these easy snacks. Serve these Cheddar Apple Muffins warm from the oven for a morning treat, however, they are equally good when are cold.

CHEESY APPLE MUFFINS

Ingredients:

(Please note, this will make 6-7 muffins only. Use double portion of everything for bigger quantity)

1 egg
60 g butter, room temperature
pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder

130 g plain flour
80-100 g Cheddar cheese, grated
50 g sugar
1 large apple, grated
1-2 tablespoons of milk (if needed)

2-3 teaspoons poppy seeds for decoration (optional)

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180C.

2. Beat butter with sugar, add the egg and beat well until smooth.

3. In separate bowl mix together flour, salt, baking powder, add the butter mixture, mix. Then add the grated cheese and apple.  Stir the batter carefully with a spoon, do not over-mix. If the batter is too thick you can add 1-2 tablespoons of milk to achieve desired thickness.

4. Fill the muffin moulds with the paper liners. Spoon the mixture in the prepared muffin moulds filling them about 2/3 . You can decorate with the slice of apple on top, if desired or, in my case, I prefer sprinkle them with some poppy seeds.

5. Bake the muffins for about 25-30 minutes until golden brown. Carefully remove from the pan, cool on the rack, serve hot or slightly cold!

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Cinnamon Rolls

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This sweet and spicy old-fashioned rolls are perfect with afternoon tea.

CINNAMON ROLLS

Ingredients:

280g strong white bread flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon fast-action dried yeast

80g butter room temperature

1 egg, slightly beaten

100ml tepid milk

60g muscovado sugar

1 teaspoon mixed spice

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Method:

1. Mix the flour, salt, sugar and yeast together in a large mixing bowl. Rub in 15g of the butter. Make a well in the middle and pour in the beaten egg, followed by the milk. Mix to form a soft pliable dough. Knead for about 5 minutes. Place in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with oiled cling film. Leave in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

2. Lightly grease the tin (22cm round cake tin). Tip the dough out on a lightly floured surface and knead briefly. Roll out to a 25 x 18 cm rectangle.

3. Using a wooden spoon, mix together butter, muscovado sugar, cinnamon and mixed spice together, then spread the mixture evenly onto the surface of the dough, leaving a border along the edges. Roll up the dough from the long edge like a Swiss Roll, sealing the end with a little water. Cut the dough into 7 equal pieces. Place the pieces in the tin and space evenly.

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4. Cover loosely with oiled cling film and leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in size.

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5. Preheat the oven to 190C. Bake the buns for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Let it cool slightly in a tin before transferring them onto wire rack. Serve warm or cold (preferably with a glass of milk 🙂

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Not Quite Usual Banana Cake

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I had an urge for Banana Cake but didn’t want to make the usual Banana Bread (although I love it), then I remember seeing on a blog, Banana Tray Cake and I really liked how it looked. However, I didn’t have all the ingredients and I decided to improvise. The result was better then I expected – the texture of the cake was grainy, nutty and moist at the same time.

BANANA TRAY BAKE

(adapted from Jude Blereau)

Ingredients:

2 bananas, sliced

1 cup plain flour

1/2 cup polenta

1/2 cup ground almond

1/2 cup sugar (plus some to sprinkle on top)

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 baking powder

1/2 bicarbonate soda

pinch of salt

125g softened butter

2 eggs

3/4 cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Butter and line up with parchment paper 20×20 baking tray.

2. Mix all dry ingredients in one bowl and set aside. In another bowl beat soft butter, eggs & vanilla extract until creamy and pale, add buttermilk and beat a little more until just combined.

3. Add dry ingredients onto the wet and mix until incorporated evenly (do not over beat). Tip the mixture into the prepared tin, smooth the top with spatula and arrange the sliced bananas on a top. (The trick is to place the banana slices carefully on top, without ‘dunking’ them into the cake. In this case, when the cake will rise during the baking it should cover them gently, sort of half way and you won’t have soggy bananas in the middle but nicely decorated cake top and better flavour instead).

4. Sprinkle with the sugar on top and place, place in the oven and bake about 35 minutes or until golden brown.

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Apple Fritters

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Whenever I cook these apple fritters (or back home they are called ‘Apple Coronas’), I always think of My Grandma, it always brings  a smile to my face and the happy memories. When it was an apple season, she would make them almost every day (obviously, by a popular demand) and it is a favourite of my grand dad too, so you had to be quick to get the best ones and they, normally, never reached the table and were eaten straight away, still hot, on their way from the pan to the plate, with chilled glass of fresh milk.

APPLE FRITTERS

Ingredients:

150g plain flour

1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

50g caster sugar

250ml buttermilk

1 egg

20g butter, melted & cooled

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 apples, sliced into thin rings and remove the cores

icing sugar for dusting

Plus butter for frying

Method:

1. Mix together flour, soda, salt and sugar in a bawl and leave it aside. Then in a separate bowl mix the wet ingredients (buttermilk, melted butter, egg, vanilla extract. Then add wet mixture into dry one and stir just until it forms a batter, then leave it to sit for 5 minutes. Batter should be quite thick consistency in order to ‘stick’ to the apple slices eventually.

2. Slice the apples into rings, removing the cores carefully. Heat a non-stick pan with some butter over a moderate heat. Then dunk each slice into the batter and carefully place them onto the pan, leaving a bit space between them, as the fritters will spread a little. (Alternatively, you can spoon a little batter on a pan first, then place a slice of apple, then cover with drop of batter on top. Im sure by one way or another you will get the hang of it.) Give it a few minutes on each side or until they are golden brown. They won’t be even, but there is a charm in it. Perhaps that’s why they called ‘Coronas’, because they are golden colou with the bits sticking out every way 🙂 Also, keep an eye on a heat and the butter, otherwise they can burn quickly.

3. When the fritter are evenly cooked and golden brown, remove them on the plate and dust generously with the icing sugar. Continue making with the rest of the apples and batter the same way.

Mighty Granola

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I don’t really like any type of breakfast cereals, maybe because I didn’t grow up with it, we never even heard of cereal when I was young, this came to our country only recently. I never heard of granola either until I moved to the UK. But I always liked oats hence I decided to try granola for breakfast one day. I tried it and I did fall in love with it instantly. I believe it came from US originally but it strongly grows in popularity all over.

I’ve tried all sorts of variations and for a long time my favourite was always plain granola topped with almonds , dried apricots  and figs. But recently I saw a recipe by Jack Monroe and had one of those moments when you think, “Why I didn’t think of that myself?’ The recipe is so simple and straightforward with only one twist in it – peanut butter (taking in account you like peanut butter, of course). However, variations are endless. She (Jack) recommends just with strawberry jam on top or banana – classic combinations! My recent addiction is just with lightly sweetened soya milk and fresh blueberries. Anything goes really when you have a good base.

I only twigged the quantity of oats because Jack’s recipe is super budget friendly and I wanted my granola to be a little bit richer and coated more with peanut butter flavour.

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PEANUT BUTTER GRANOLA

Ingredients:

25g butter

4 tablespoons crunchy peanut butter

4 tablespoons honey

200g rolled porridge oats

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180C.

2. In a heavy saucepan/ovenproof dish on a low heat melt the butter, peanut butter and honey until incorporated.

3. Add the oats and mix together well until all oats are well coated.

4. Bake for about 15 minutes, stirring once half way through, until it becomes a golden brown but avoid it burning.

4. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before transferring into airtight container, where you can keep it  for a few weeks. (In our house it doesn’t last longer than a few days 🙂

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Eat Cake for Breakfast

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Rich and buttery, yet light and airy, this wonderful loaf-cake captures the essence of the classic with an added twist. Adding cognac gives a depth of flavour should you feel you particularly adventurous. You can even soak the apricots in it too. Also it is one of those cakes which tastes much better next day after baking.

TEA LOAF WITH APRICOTS

Ingredients:

200g plain flour

170l butter room temperature

3 eggs

170g sugar

4 tablespoons cognac

170g dried apricots

1/2 teaspoon of baking powder

pinch of salt

Method:

1. Place dried apricots in a separate bowl, cover with boiling water and leave for 5 minutes, then tip the apricots into the colander and let them dry. When they are completely dry from water, chop them into cubes and toss in a little amount of flour – it will prevent the fruit from gathering in one area and distribute evenly throughout the cake. Leave aside until later.

2. Preheat the oven to 170C. Butter the loaf tin and line with the parchment paper.

3. Beat the butter for 5-6 minutes until it’s really fluffy, add sugar, beat another 5 minutes. Slightly beat the eggs with the fork and gradually add into the buttery mixture, along with the cognac, continue mixing
another 5 minutes.

4. In a separate bowl mix the flour with the baking powder and salt. Gradually add the flour mixture into the buttery one. The mass will increase in volume, becoming very soft and airy. At the end, add the apricots and carefully mix into the batter, pour into the prepared tin.

5. Bake it for about 55 minutes or until golden and skewer comes out clean. After the baking leave the cake to cool in the tin because this cake is very fragile. Sprinkle with icing sugar before serving.

P.S: Please do not be confused by my pictures as it looks like the cake has raisins in it, where in my recipe I talk about apricots. The thing is I came across to the DARK variety of dried apricots which I have never tried before and I was keen to try them.  They are very dark and look like raisins when chopped  but I definitely recommend them if you have never tried/seen dark apricots.  Try them next time you see them because they are very soft, juicy and delicious. 🙂

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