Welcome to adobo-down-under!

Musings. Family. Food. Stories. Cooking. Recipes. Eating. A recipe journal. From simple Filipino dishes to challenging recipes and exciting gastronomical failures. This is for my girls to look back on for comfort, memories, laughs, love and lots of food!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Panna cotta with ruby sauce

Panna cotta is one of the desserts in my list that I wanted to try for a long time.  When this was part of our Pastry, Hot and Cold Desserts module in TAFE, it was a welcome surprise.  Its easy and so pretty when finished.  A few minutes heating the cream, chilling and voila - a simply and elegant dessert worthy of praise.  My hubby who is not-a-dessert-person had a spoonful of this and then another plate.  Hang on.  That's dessert!  Not a meal! Hahaha!  In short, he loved it.  And so did the girls.  Silky and creamy panna cotta paired with that sweet and tangy raspberry sauce.  Beyond delicious!  I tell you.

It looks really fancy on a white plate.  Lavishly elegant I must say - just like poached pears in red wine desserts.  Maybe its not as smooth as restaurant versions or the ones you'd see in recipe books but looks are always deceiving.

This dish is making its way to this month's Sweet Adventures Blog Hop themed Berry Nice to Meet You hosted by Christina from The Hungry Australian.    Before I settled on this dessert, I had so many strawberry recipes in mind and with the good supply of strawberries from QLD it was just the best option. But we had frozen raspberries waiting for some love so this happened.  And it was a good choice.  Something different in our dessert repertoire which does not involve using the oven.   This recipe is adapted from the 2011 edition of Essential Desserts - More than 200 step-step-Recipes by Murdoch Books.

To make this panna cotta you'll need:

750ml pouring cream

3 teaspoons powdered gelatin

1 vanilla bean, split lengthways

80g (1/3 cup) caster sugar

Lightly grease five 150ml panna cotta moulds or ramekin moulds with canola spray.

Place 60ml of the cream in a small bowl then sprinkle the gelatin powder on top and leave to rest.

Pour the remaining cream in a small saucepan with the vanilla bean and sugar and put on low heat while gently stirring.  Heat through until the sugar has dissolved. Do not boil. 

Remove from heat and using a hand whisk, mix the gelatin-cream mixture to into the warm incorporate.

Pour into the prepared moulds and chill for 2 hours or until set.

To make the ruby sauce:

235g (1 cup) caster sugar

250 ml water

1 cinnamon stick

125g fresh or frozen raspberries

125 ml red wine (I used whatever was on hand - which was Merlot)

Prepare the ruby sauce while the panna cotta is chilling.

In a small saucepan, combine the water and sugar and put on medium heat until the sugar was dissolved.

Add the cinnamon stick and simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.

Add the raspberries and wine, on medium heat, boil for 5 minutes.

Remove from heat. Take out the cinnamon stick and strain the sauce through a strainer/sieve.

Using a spoon, push the raspberries through the sieve or strainer to drain all that juice and all you're left with are the seeds.  Discard the seeds.

Let cool.  Then chill in the refrigerator.  Serve as a sauce with the panna cotta and garnish with more raspberries.

How about you?  Do you have any food dishes that you've been putting off to try?  Why not try and make this one?  It will surely impress.   And now that you've met this berry dessert, go and hop on to the other berry-licious creations.  And while you're at it, why not join in the fun and have a go at making someone's day berry-full


Friday, August 03, 2012

Carrot galette

"Carrots are divine, you get a dozen a dime.  It's maaaa-gic!" - Bugs Bunny

There's some wise words there.  From one of the most influential characters in the animated world.  I reckon its because of Bugs Bunny that carrots are usually the first vegetable the children learn to love.  But seriously, what's not to love about the humble carrot.  They are the most versatile vegetable in the world!  In the universe, even.  You can roast them, add them to braised and stews and casseroles, boil them, mash them, fry them, grill them.  And they're not just confined to savoury dishes, they're also great in cakes!  So what's not to love!  They come in lots of lovely shapes/size and colours too!  Have you even seen a purple carrot? They're the next super food says The Age.

Daucus carota sativus nicknamed carrots as everyone already knows, has beta-carotene (Vitamin A) which helps maintain good eye sight.  They're also rich  in fiber, antioxidants and minerals.  There's an urban  legend  which originated among British gunners from the Royal British Airfoce during World War II that says "eating carrots can allow one to see in the dark."   Fact or fiction?  Who knows?! But let's not go there. 

Here's a carrot recipe adapted from a local supermarket's magazine -  Coles.  It's super easy to make using store-bought puff pastry I used the local brand Careme which is absolutely positively the best!).  You can also use any kind of cheese you fancy and any of your favourite herbs.  I've halved the ricotta called for in the original recipe and used bocconcini  and used dried oregano instead of fresh ones.  Served alongside your main or as a starter.  They're gorgeous and packed full of healthy stuff.  The humble and versatile carrot is the feature for Week 8 of the Power Foods blog hop organised by Mireya of My Healthy Eating Habits.

To make this Carrot Galette,  you'll need

a bunch of Dutch carrots

olive oil or canola spray

375g block of frozen puff pastry, thawed

150g fresh ricotta cheese

150g bocconcini

finely grated lemon zest of 2 lemons

1 teaspoon of dried oregano

salt and pepper to season

Preheat oven to 180*C.  Line a baking tray with non stick baking paper.  

Wash and scrub carrots and trim the top leaves.  Cut into half lengthwise.  Arrange on a single layer on a tray and spray lightly with oil.  Roast for 10-15 minutes until just tender. Set aside once done.

On your kitchen bench, roll out the pastry.  Crimp the edges and using a butter knife, light score a line on the edges to create a border.  

Using a fork, prick the area inside to create air pockets.

Combine the cheese, zest (and half the fresh oregano if using fresh) in a bowl and season with salt and pepper.

Spread the cheese mixture on the pastry.  Arrange the carrots on the cheese mixture, then sprinkle with the dried or fresh herbs.

Bake in the oven and cook for 20-25 minutes or until pastry is crisp and golden brown.

This post is part of a Power Foods blog group.  Check out Mireya of My Health Eating Habits and the other Power Food posts from Alyce from More Time at the Table, Ansh from Spice Roots,  Casey from Bookcase Foodie, Jeanette from Jeanette's Healthy Living, Jill from Saucy Cooks, Martha from Simple Nourished Living and Sarah from Everything in the Kitchen Sink.

If you are a blogger and would like to take part in this blogging group about Power Foods: 150 Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients from the editors of at Martha Stewart's Living Magazine, please get in touch with Mireya at mireya@myhealthyeatinghabits.com for details. 


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