Wednesday, January 21, 2009

On a roll

Amazed, baffled, shocked, ecstatic. Those four words wrap up the way I feel about my new found passion for literally cooking up a storm. Thank you so much to Jackie, Cari and Amy, my beloved Cordon Bleu inspirations. You have truly rubbed off on me, and for that I am so grateful!
Walnuts and Asparagus Spears drizzled with Olive Oil, baked crispy outside and tender within, served with Iceberg Lettuce and Sliced Pear.
Crepes filled with Broccoli and Creme Sauce
150g plain flour
200ml milk
100ml water
3 eggs
pinch salt and pepper
butter or olive oil, to fry

1. To make the crêpes, place all the ingredients, but just half the flour, in a mixing bowl and blend well before adding the rest of the flour and beating until smooth. Allow to stand for at least 15 minutes.
2. To cook the crepes, place a crêpe pan, or heavy bottomed frying pan, over a medium heat and lightly grease with butter or olive oil. Don’t allow the pan to get so hot it smokes. Lift the pan and pour in a little of the crêpe mixture, tilting and swirling until it just covers the base - don’t pour too much, thin crêpes are best.

3. Place the pan back on the heat and leave for a few minutes until the edges start to curl, then turn over and cook the other side for a few minutes. Place on a cooling rack. Repeat the same method with the rest of the batter until you have made 4 crêpes. Preheat the oven to 180°C.

4. To make the filling, trim and lightly steam or blanch the broccoli and refresh in cold water. Lightly toast the pine kernels and place in a blender with the basil, half the broccoli, garlic, cream, lemon juice and seasoning to taste. Take care with salt at this stage in case the cheese is salty. Blend to a course paste.

5. Roughly chop the remaining broccoli and finely slice the fennel; add to the cream mixture. Trim the asparagus into 8-10cm lengths, place on a baking tray, dot with butter and lightly grill, or cook in a griddle pan until tender. Heat the broccoli mixture in a pan, stirring until hot.
Sameer and I try our hand at baking our own pizza. The toppings we choose - out of this world, pepperoni, mushrooms, more salami and sausage!!! The base however is another story, and we can safely say we are still a long way from opening our own Pizza Shop!

One of the most delicious pasta recipes I have come across. Jaime Oliver you are truly a genius!
Spinach and Ricotta Spaghetti, flavoured with grated nutmeg. I added in some mushrooms and swapped the mascarpone for cream since you can't really find the Italian cream cheese here in India.

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