One look at the picture of this salad and there was no doubt in my mind that this is one culinary experience I did not want to forgo. Yes, it came from the kitchen of Ottolenghi, a chef whose body of work I have only recently discovered. He was inspired by flavors he experienced in Turkey and vacillating prose like this…”This salad is so crunchy and sweet you can eat it with a spoon, and never stop.” And the best part…it was so easy to put together.
A few staples (onion, garlic, peppers, tomatoes, oregano, allspice, garlic, olive oil), a dash of the slightly exotic (pomegranate seeds) and some not readily available ingredients (pomegranate molasses which I substituted with some Modena Vinegar and brown sugar) came together in a happy marriage that looked beautiful on the plate and just as tasty on the palate.
As the weather gets warmer, try this salad whose recipe is featured on this link.
I plan to serve it the next time with a slight twist in tiny phyllo cups. It’ll look like a million bucks and taste like that too.
PS. The picture here is my creation!
Prior to even setting foot in South Wales, my husband’s colleagues insisted that we eat this local delicacy called Welsh Cake. Never having heard of this dish (ok go ahead say it…did you not profess to be a gourmand?), I assumed it was a baked delicacy to be served at tea time.
So imagine my surprise when on day one at Abergavenny market I came upon a woman making fresh Welsh cakes. She was cooking them right there on a hot griddle! The golden cakes came off the griddle on to a plate and after a dusting of fine sugar were ready to be eaten. My younger daughter was so enticed that I’m positive she practically gulped them down. I got chatting with the lady making these delicacies and within moments, I had the recipe to make these delicious treats stateside. Here’s how simple it is.
1 lb self-raising flour
8 oz butter or margarine
4 oz powdered or fine sugar
4 oz dried fruit (raisins, craisins, cranberries, sultanas…take your pick)
1 whole egg
A bit of milk if needed
Take the self-raising flour in a bowl and rub the butter or margarine into it till you have a breadcrumb like consistency. Now add the sugar, dried fruit and egg to form a dough. If the dough is too tight, add a bit of milk to moisten.
Roll the dough into a 1/4″ thick circle and cut it out with a biscuit cutter.
Heat a griddle and spray with some non stick spray or swipe some butter. Now cook the cakes for 2-3 minutes on each side till golden brown. Arrange them on a plate and sprinkle with powdered sugar.
Serve them plain or with some jam and watch them disappear
A recent issue of Oprah Magazine had a recipe for a Raspberry Buckle. A buckle? Isn’t that what appears on belts and shoes? Is that really a type of food? Yup. Not only is it a food, it is a dessert… and as a presumed dessert connoisseur, I was clueless about this genre.
The recipe was even simpler. Take some vanilla ice cream, blend it with self-raising flour and some oil, and presto, you have a cake base that gets topped with any or all of your favorite berries, gets baked for 30 minutes, and emerges as this amazing concoction to serve with coffee!
Simple, efficient and beautiful to look at. Take a look at the picture above and tell me if you agree.
Have you baked a buckle? How do you think it is similar or different to other desserts in its genre? And did you use ice-cream in your recipe or was that simply the genius of the cooking staff at Oprah Magazine?
I will keep away from new recipes and cooking magazines for a few days. Because if I continue to bake at this rate, I may not be able to buckle my belt too much longer.
To see the recipe for the amazingly simple buckle we created with blackberries, click here: