Ahhh weekend breakfast - my fave!
Pancakes are my staple weekend breakfast. They have the ability to wake me up in the most wonderful mood and cause me to joyfully leap out of bed and run straight to the kitchen to whip up a batch! I don't think there is any chance of me getting sick of pancakes, especially with all the different variations one can create. This Saturday it was, however, time for change.
I've never found the name of this recipe very appealing. Egg Pie. Sounds like prison food. I have no idea where this recipe originated from and I've never seen anyone else make this other than my family, growing up. I have an inkling that this is a pretty old fashioned, nay, vintage recipe. It's a shame it isn't more popular because it really is quite tasty and requires only three ingredients to prepare. Serve with some hearty toast, fresh fruit, and this is one stylishly retro meal!
The Egg Pie looks almost like a souffle when you first take it out of the oven; it's really quite elegant. I drizzled some lemon juice, sprinkled a little sugar on top and served with homemade jam, but there are few other variations you can also try.
Note: I tend to get a little greedy with the jam.
3 eggs, beaten until fluffy
1/2 c. milk (I used soy)
1/2 c. flour
Preheat oven to 400F.
Mix eggs, milk and flour together until smooth. Pour into a small oven proof fry pan (I don't have one of these so I use a cake pan) and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with icing sugar, or drizzle with melted butter, lemon juice and sugar. My personal preference is lemon juice, sugar and a generous spoonful of jam.
I hope you're having a lovely Wednesday!
It was my Mom's birthday yesterday and to celebrate, my sister, Ann, organized a tea party!
Alas, there was no Mad Hatter, but she created an amazing menu with a variety of little tea sandwiches: devilled egg, cucumber with garlic butter, almond chicken salad, seafood, and (my favorite of the evening) pineapple cream cheese - a brilliant collection to say the least.
Tea parties are fabulous for any occasion. Tea is such a wonderful thing, it really embodies an energy of comfort and contentment. Add to that some lovely little sandwiches, a few sweets, cool comrades and you've got yourself one chillin' little tea party! There are all sorts of groovy ideas on the Internet for hosting a tea party; one thing I really loved about Ann's tea was she had collected all sorts of quotes about tea, all totally random, wrote them on little bits of paper and scattered them over the table. This alone created mass amounts of entertainment for everyone.
My contribution to the evening was Spiced Chai Latte Cupcakes with Cinnamon Swiss Meringue Frosting. These turned out incredibly, the flavour was like no cupcake I'd consumed before. The spices in the cake blended beautifully; the frosting had only a bit of vanilla and cinnamon for flavouring, but really pulled the whole cupcake together. My taste buds sang and proceeded to dance with one another. It was magical.
The only downer I encountered was with my very first attempt at piping icing, which turned out horribly. Piping FAIL. Using a plastic bag, like a zip lock bag, and cutting a small hole in one of the corners will work if you don't have an actual piping bag. However, this approach proved unsuccessful. I ended up just smoothing out the awkward globs on each cupcake with a spatula. And then decorated them accordingly.
Note to self: must invest in a proper piping bag.
I found this recipe here at Love and Olive Oil, which has a huge variety of cupcake recipes, amongst other tasties, so do explore! Oh and take note, the cupcakes (not the icing) are vegan-friendly!
Spiced Chai Latte Cupcakes with Cinnamon Swiss Meringue Frosting
makes 12 cupcakes
1 c. soy milk
4 black tea bags or 2 Tbsp loose leaf black tea
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp cornstarch
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/3 c. sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
for the frosting
1/2 c. sugar
2 large egg whites
3/4 c. unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350F.
Heat soy milk in a small saucepan until almost boiling. Remove from heat and add tea bags. Allow to steep for 10 minutes, then remove teabags, squeezing out as much soy milk as possible. Re-measure and add more soy milk to make exactly 1 cup. Whisk in cider vinegar, and set aside until curdled.
In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Pour in soy milk mixture, along with oil, sugar, and vanilla and stir just until no large lumps remain.
Fill cupcake liners with 1/4 cup of batter (liners should be 2/3 full) and bake for 20-22 minutes or until puffed and golden - be sure not to over-bake. Transfer to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely before frosting.
Put the sugar and egg whites in a large heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and whisk constantly, keeping mixture over the heat, until it feels hot to the touch, about 3 minutes. The sugar should be dissolved, and the mixture will look like marshmallow cream.
Pour the mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and beat on medium speed until it cools and forms a thick and shiny meringue, about 5 minutes. Switch to the paddle attachment and add the butter, one tablespoon at a time, beating until smooth. Once all the batter is in, beat the butter cream on medium-high speed until it is thick and very smooth, 6 - 10 minutes. Add the vanilla and cinnamon and whip for another 30 seconds until incorporated. Spread or pipe on cooled cupcakes.
Bread seems to have become a trend lately. A trend that I am more than willing to follow. No-knead breads have become especially popular and rightly so! How awesome is it that with little effort we can supply ourselves with fresh, wholesome, home-baked bread?! No fillers or preservatives and no lack of taste!
Now I can't stress enough how delicious this bread is. To put it in perspective for you, I could sit down with one of these loaves, a pound of butter, and eat. All of it. Fortunately for my thighs I'm stronger than that; at least that's what I have to keep repeating to myself as I stare down lustfully at a freshly baked loaf. It's also worth mentioning that it requires little effort to prepare, especially if you buy the sesame seeds roasted.
Spelt flour is a great alternative to wheat flour - which I rarely allow into my apartment, unless I'm feeling devilish. It's an ancient grain which can be substituted in many recipes that call for white or whole wheat flour and, although like wheat flour it contains gluten, it is much easier for the body to digest and many people with allergies to wheat can digest spelt.
I've read in a few places that you don't need to use as much liquid when substituting spelt flour for wheat flour because it's more soluble, but I've experienced the contrary and usually add a little more liquid as the finished product can be a bit on the dry side if I don't.
Now get yourself a nice big bag of organic spelt flour and start experimenting with recipes you would normally use white flour. Your tummy will thank you for it!
This recipe originally yielded one loaf, but the size of loaf pan it called for was very unusual. So with some mathematical assistance from Mom, we adjusted the ingredients in order to get two loaves, using two good ol' everyday loaf pans.
One last thing to point out, if you haven't worked with no knead breads, the consistency of the "dough" is not really dough-like at all. It's more like a thick batter. So don't freak when you end up with a mixing bowl full of goop cause everything is goooood!
Whole Spelt Bread
6 c. organic spelt flour
3/4 c. sunflower seeds
3/4 c. pumpkin seeds
3/4 c. flax seeds
3/8 c. roasted sesame seeds (if math isn't your forte like me, that's 1/4 c. plus half of another 1/4 c.)
3/4 c. warm water for dissolving yeast
3 c. water
3 3/4 Tbsp vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp salt
3/4 tsp salt
3 packages dry yeast (or 6 3/4 tsp)
Roast sesame seeds and set aside.
Grease two loaf pans.
Dissolve yeast in 3/4 cup warm water.
Sift flour into a large mixing bowl. Add all other ingredients and mix until a smooth dough is formed. Pour dough into loaf pans and let rise for about an hour. The dough should rise noticably in that time.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 480F. Bake for 15 minutes.
Reduce heat to 380F and bake for another 45 minutes. Take bread out of the oven and remove from the pans. Bread should easily come out of the pan, if not, bake a little longer (I use a knife around the edges to loosen and it comes out pretty easily). Put bread back in the oven and bake for an additional 15 - 30 minutes, checking frequently. I take mine out as soon as the 15 minutes is up. When you thump on the bread and it sounds hollow, your bread is done.
Remove bread from the oven, cool and enjoy!
First off, hope your Christmas was filled with love and I wish you all the best in the year to come!
Originally, I was planning on posting about some wholesome spelt bread to balance out all the sugary deliciousness I consumed over the Christmas holidays. But I couldn't resist putting this recipe for Olive Cheese Bread up because it is SO amazing. I made some last night to have with my Season 1 Gossip Girl marathon, which turned out to be a magical combination. I found this recipe some time ago at thepioneerwoman.com , which is a fabulous blog that I highly recommend. Sometimes if I'm reading it at work (on my lunch, of course), I have to put my hand over my mouth to stop the sound of laughter from echoing through the cubicles; it's that funny. So many great recipes too!
I served the Olive Cheese Bread with some dates and raisins so the sweetness of the dried fruit would balance out the salty of the olives. I tried to make the presentation look appealing, and failed. Photography is not my forte, but luckily eating is!
So if you're trying to work off those holiday pounds, this recipe isn't for you. But then I don't agree with diets anyway, so I won't tell...
...For anyone interested in the spelt bread, I'll be posting that next! :)
Olive Cheese Bread
1 loaf French bread, sliced lengthwise
6 ounces Green Olives, with pimentos
6 ounces Black Olives
2 Green Onions
1/2 cup Butter, room temperature
1/2 cup Mayonnaise
3/4 pound Monterey Jack cheese, grated (I usually use Mozzarella since it's often what I have on hand)
Preheat oven to 325F.
Roughly chop green and black olives. Thinly slice green onions.
Combine butter, mayonnaise, cheese, olives, and green onions in a medium size bowl. Stir until thoroughly combined. Spread mixture evenly on both slices of French bread and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until cheese has melted. At this point I like to broil it for a bit until the cheese starts to brown.
Slice and serve! Yummy in your tummy!