Aubergines, or eggplants, are amongst my favourite vegetables to cook, and I really enjoy finding new ways of presenting them at the table and giving them a new taste. This aubergines recipe is inspired by a dish I found in the book Jerusalem, by Ottolenghi and Tamimi, which was given to me as a present not so long ago. As you can imagine, in the land where baba ghanoush was created, aubergines have an essential place in the kitchen and perhaps aubergines are the reason why I lust so much over Levantine and Middle Eastern cuisine. The original recipe comes with a sauce made of chopped lemons, which I had to change because my other half doesn’t like lemon that much. Also, I had to change some of the spices compared to the original recipe, simply because I did not have the required ones in my cupboard. The result was still magnificent, I believe, thanks to the feta cheese, something I would have never dreamed of adding to fried onions. If you don’t believe it, please try this recipe, you won’t regret it!
Christmas means plenty of gingerbread – gingerbread men, gingerbread house… I’ve always wanted to make a gingerbread cake, as I like the flavours in there more so than Christmas pudding, and wanted a scrumptious gingerbread-like dessert to wrap up Christmas dinner.
This year, I found the favourite old fashioned gingerbread recipe and decided to adapt it by reducing the sweetness and doubling the spice, and also adding a layer of mascarpone cream icing on top. The result? Delicious! The cream and gingerbread taste worked really well together! Continue reading “Old Fashioned Gingerbread”
This week, I had some pre-prepped prawns and mixed seafood left in the fridge, and most of the other ingredients needed in this recipe (such as chopped garlic, chillies, ginger, coriander, madras curry paste, spicy bean paste, soya sauce and Shaoxing rice wine) are all part of my spice cupboard/standard fridge stock, I decided to try this recipe. The recipe is from Ken Hom’s My Kitchen Table: 100 Quick Stir-fry Recipes. You can find the full Fragrant Prawn Curry recipe in Google Books. Continue reading “Ken Hom’s Fragrant Prawn Curry Recipe”
We are no chefs, but when it comes to the kitchen, we are quite crafty here at Blender and Basil. You know we are obsessed about homemade and we already shared with you our homemade pasta recipe. Pick that one up and once you get the hang of it, you’ll soon realise there are so many things you can do with it, including inventing your own filling for pasta, like we did with these mezzelune. Feel free to use this recipe as a basis for your own ideas on how to fill ravioli or mezzelune, and if you want to share your ideas with us, we are very interested to know what you would make. This recipe makes about 150 mezzelune, so have always a plan B filling in the fridge in case you run out of the one below!
For the pasta:
Follow our homemade pasta recipe.
For the filling:
6 medium aubergines
100gr parmesan cheese or Grana Padano
50gr pine nuts (roasted)
4 leaves of basil
salt and pepper
one round stamp
a fork to help you close up the mezzelune
We have a bit of a soft spot for biscuits here at the Italian household of Blender and Basil. In Italy, biscuits are an easy snack, like everywhere else in the world. But they are also an essential when it comes to consuming breakfast at home. Together with the famous combination of jam croissant and cappuccino, biscuits dipped in caffe latte are the definition of what Italians eat in the morning. In London I had it easy, and especially in the North-East, where the Turkish shops have a marvellous variety of Italian delicacies on their shelves. Singapore is another story: Italian brands are still a rarity here, and especially when it comes to baked and sweet products, there are so many more influences that are a lot more popular for the local Singaporean palate than the Italian. So I decided to find the recipe and try to make myself some Gocciole, a very popular type of biscuits made of crunchy pasta frolla and filled with chocolate chips. Their name, literally meaning “drops”, comes from the chocolate chips themselves, which in Italian are called gocciole di cioccolato, and the shape, strictly tear-like, to resemble a drop.
This honey and butter bread is quite commonly found in Korean and some other Asian cafes, and doesn’t require any actual bread baking (although it does require a few minutes in the oven). The core ingredients are – yes – honey and butter. The ideal bread to use is milk bread, but you can make it with ordinary sliced bread as well. I’m using half brown and white bread here for an easy and healthier option.
The prep work only takes about 2 minutes, and then it’s a quick 10 minutes in the oven before it’s ready to serve as a dessert or a sweet pick-me-up.
2-3 thick slices of bread
2 tbsps of clear honey
A few slices of unsalted butter
Dash of cinamon
It is well known that Italians need a constant intake of carbs and, if we don’t have pasta for a few days, we’ll feel as if we haven’t eaten it for years. Nowadays pasta is consumed mostly dried, as the latest generations see the making of fresh pasta confined to the most traditional shapes and the stuffed variety of pasta, such as tortellini or ravioli.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a lover of dried pasta and I always make sure my favourite number of Barilla spaghetti is in the cupboard. However, I cannot begin to explain the pleasure and satisfaction that making fresh pasta at home brings. So, instead, I’ll just show you…
800 g 00 type flour (but keep more flour at hand as you’ll need it at the rolling stage)
Step 1 – You can start mixing your dough in a bowl, if you don’t feel confident mixing the eggs and the flour directly on your cooking surface. Remember to create a well in the middle of the flour, so the eggs are easy to mix. You will also notice from the pictures that I got a man to do the kneading– don’t blame me, it can be hard work!