Saturday, February 23, 2013

Gingerbread Waffles

Waffles...yum.  These are something good that work great as a breakfast or great as a cold snack during the day. Even my son who doesn`t like regular waffles is more than happy to eat these, so an extra bonus for me.

It does take a while to make, but you can leave the batter in the fridge for up to a day, so if you don`t want to make all the waffles at once, you can store the remainder of the batter. If you are more in a pancake mood, then just add a little milk to thin the batter.

What you need:
4 eggs
1/3 cup sugar
1 c melasse (molasses for those of you with access to it), bought mine at Coop
1 c buttermilk
3 cups flour
2 tsp ground ginger
1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda (natron)
2 tsp baking powder (backpulver)
1/2 c unsalted butter, melted

For the toppings you can use syrup, whip cream, fruit, or powdered sugar.  I think they are great cold with nothing, and warm with just syrup.

In a large bowl, add the flour, spices, salt, soda and powder. Mix well and set aside.

In another bowl, beat the eggs until fluffy. An electric mixer works best, but you can always do it by hand. Add the sugar, buttermilk and melasse.  I don`t bother to measure it, I just pour it from the jar as it is so sticky. Mix well.

Slowly add the dry ingredients, half at a time and mix between. Add the butter and mix until the batter is smooth. (I know mine shows butter chunks, but I have let it get soft and it mixes quite quickly)

You can either cover the batter and leave it in the fridge for a day, cook all of it immediately and have leftovers for snacks, or some of each.

Make sure you spray your waffle iron (or rub on a cooking butter) so the batter doesn`t get stuck. Cook for about 4 minutes, or a little bit longer than your waffle iron says is done to get a nice brown finish. I end up with about 30 waffles, but this will depend on your waffle iron.


Monday, February 11, 2013

Smoked Salmon Sushi Squares

Last week, I went out one evening with some friends for dinner, so decided to surprise my hubby with a special sushi dinner. He thought it was fantastic. It was really quite simple, though some of the prep work took a while, it wasn`t the kind that you have to stand in the kitchen and watch over, so it was easy to do other things. The total time was probably about 15 minutes of creating the dish. 

If you`d like to use something other than salmon, you can make with pretty much anything flat (or that is squish-able). 

What you need: 
500 g sushi rice
3 Tbls rice vinegar
1 Tbls sugar

1/3 cup of mayonnaise
1 tsp liquid hot sauce (I used Thai hot chili sauce from Migros, but the original recipe calls for Sriracha)
1/2 tsp sesame oil

1 bag of rucola, I found some mixed with wasabi leaves (Coop)
1 package of smoked salmon
1 green onion (scallion)

soy sauce for dipping
plastic wrap
square baking dish, or something to create one
a heavy book

First cook your sushi rice so that it can cool. Once cooked, add the rice vinegar and sugar and mix well. Let cool. 

Next, find something square, or a small rectangular pan. I used a small baking dish with a box of raclette potatoes taking up the other half to create the size I wanted.  Lay a piece of plastic wrap in each direction, leaving enough excess so that you can cover the sushi when complete. 

Once the rice is cool, press half of it on to the bottom of your plastic wrapped dish. 

Mix together the mayonnaise, sesame oil and hot sauce, and then spread half on the rice. 

Next, layer on some leaves and then cover with salmon. 

Repeat the process again, so that you have 2 layers of everything. Fold the plastic wrap up over the sushi and lay a heavy book or two on top. Press for at least an hour and then slice into small squares. After each cut, wipe your knife clean with a damp paper towel to clean it and make it easier to cut neatly. 

Thinly slice a green onion and sprinkle on top of your cut sushi. Serve with soy sauce. Enjoy!

This recipe came from My Japanese Table

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Restaurant Style Chicken and Veg Pasta

I made this because my youngest son loves the little toddler pasta microwave meals, and thought this would be a great alternative to one. I also thought hubby and I might enjoy it. I will say that it was good, but my son was the one who loved it the most, which is good as it made quite a lot. He actually ate it the whole week for lunch, so if you have young children, you may want to consider trying this.

I`m not saying it is just for children though. It almost tasted like a restaurant style pasta you would be served at a family restaurant in the US. I know that doesn`t really explain much if you have never had something like that, but I am not quite sure how to describe it. If making it for adults, I think it would be best to pan fry the chicken instead of boiling it.

You can check out the cookbook here, the mediterrasian way

What you need:
500 g large pasta
500-600 g chicken pieces, bite size
1-2 cups broccoli, also in bite size pieces
1 package of mushrooms, sliced
7 or 8 Tbls sundried tomatoes in oil, roughly chopped
4 whole green onions, thinly sliced
4 cloves minced garlic
500 ml chicken broth
500 ml milk
6 Tbls maisstärke, mixed with 6 Tbls water for thickening
1 1/2 cups grated parmesan cheese (or another you really enjoy) Normally I use freshly grated, but didn`t have any on hand at the time.
salt and pepper to taste

Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Add the pasta, cook for a minute and then add the chicken (unless you decide to pan fry it). Add the broccoli when you have 5 minutes left on the pasta.

While the pasta cooks, heat a pan and add both the tomatoes and their oil, mushrooms, scallions and garlic. Stir for 2-3 minutes.

Add the liquid and heat until it begins to boil.

Add the cornstarch mixture and keep stirring until thickened, about 2 minutes

Add the cheese, salt and pepper and mix until combined.

Drain the pasta mixture then add the veg mixture and stir gently. Add the chicken if you pan fried it.

There you go. You can chop everything ahead of time and it will not take that long to make. Depending on your likes of the various vegetables, feel free to add more or less.