Wholewheat Raisin Bread

3 Nov

Nothing beats the scent of fresh, homemade bread. Okay, except the scent of fresh, homemade cupcakes… But still!

Wholewheat Raisin Bread

Ingredients (for 1 loaf)

  • 300ml luke warm water
  • 3 tsp active dry yeast
  • 250g all purpose flour
  • 200g whole wheat flour
  • 100g old fashioned oats
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 150g raisins

Directions

  • In a small bowl, combine the luke warm water and the yeast. Give it a good stir and set aside for about 5 minutes, until the yeast begins to form bubbles.
  • Sift the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, oats and salt into a large bowl .
  • Stir in the yeast mixture until the dough is starting to pull away from the bowl (it gets less sticky and is forming a nice ball)
  • Now get the dough out of the bowl and start kneading for about 10-15 minutes.
  • Form a ball with the dough, place it back into the bowl and cover up with a towel.
  • Put aside in a warm place for 1 hour (I always preheat my microwave for a minute and then put my bowl in there).
  • The dough should have doubled in volume after an hour.
  • Add the raisins and knead the dough for another 10 minutes
  • Form the dough into a log and put it in a pan (I used a 23cmx13cm rectangle  one)
  • Cover the pan with a towel and put aside again for about 1 hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 190°C.
  • Bake the bread for 30-40 minutes (until golden and hollow sounding when tapped)
  • Let the bread cool down completely

Source: adapted from Pastry Affair

Carrot Cake

3 Nov

This week I had a delicious piece of carrot cake at Hema. But it was a little dry, and if you know me, you’ll see where this is going… I (think I) always know it better so I made my own, moist carrot cake today. I don’t want to brag too much, but this cake is a little masterpiece… I love the mixture of tastes, and the nice texture. And it isn’t too unhealthy so indulge, my friends!

ps: remember my shopping spree in Holland? Check out the pictures, starring my new tea pot and some really cute sprinkles.

Carrot Cake

Ingredients (for 1 cake, 26cm diameter)

Cake

  • 250g applesauce, unsweetened (if you want to use sweetened applesauce, use 50g less sugar)
  • 175g cane sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 125g grated carrots (about 2 medium carrots)
  • 75g grated coconut
  • 75g chopped nuts
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 250g crushed pineapple (not drained!)
  • 250g flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Frosting

  • 100g margarine (softened)
  • 250g cream cheese (softened)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 100g powdered sugar

Garnish

  • 2 Tbsp sprinkles

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 175°C
  • Combine the applesauce, sugar, eggs, grated carrots, coconut, chopped nuts, vanilla and crushed pineapple. Stir well
  • Sift in the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon and stir softly until combined
  • Pour into a lightly greased 28cm diameter cake tin
  • Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean
  • Let the cake cool down completely
  • Meanwhile, make the frosting: beat the margarine until pale. Then add the cream cheese and beat until fluffy
  • Add in the vanilla and powdered sugar and beat until nice and smooth
  • Set the frosting aside in the refrigerator until you need it
  • Invert the cooled down cake onto a plate
  • Apply a generous layer of frosting and spread nicely
  • Garnish with the sprinkles (I put an upside down bowl on top of my cake, and scattered the sprinkles around the bowl)
Source: adapted from Mom on Time Out

Pizza with Cherry Tomatoes

3 Nov

As much as I love pasta, sometimes I also crave a nice pizza… When we have something to celebrate, we normally go to an authentic Italian restaurant here in Ghent (Il Peperoncino in the St-Pietersnieuwstraat or Picobello in the Belfortstraat, they have the same owner). They don’t speak or understand Dutch very well, but the food is amazing!

Since today is a regular Saturday, we stayed at home and I made us a delicious homemade pizza instead! You can top it with anything you like of course, but I like a simple pizza where you can taste the ingredients. So we stayed with mozarella and cherry tomatoes!

Pizza with Cherry Tomatoes

Ingredients (for 2 pizzas)

Dough

  • 150ml luke warm water
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 150g whole wheat flour
  • 125g all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Topping

  • 1 can (400g) tomato cubes
  • 200g mozzarella (I used light)
  • 300g cherry tomatoes, different colours, cut into half
  • 4 tsp oregano
  • pepper
  • salt
  • some fresh basil leaves for garnishing

Directions

  • In a small bowl, combine the luke warm water, the yeast and the sugar. Give it a good stir and set aside for about 5 minutes, until the yeast begins to form bubbles.
  • Sift the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour and salt into a large bowl .
  • Stir in the olive oil and the yeast mixture until the dough is starting to pull away from the bowl (it gets less sticky and is forming a nice ball)
  • Now get the dough out of the bowl and start kneading for about 10-15 minutes.
  • Form a ball with the dough, place it back into the bowl and cover up with a towel.
  • Put aside in a warm place for 1 hour (I always preheat my microwave for a minute and then put my bowl in there).
  • The dough should have doubled in volume after an hour.
  • Knead the dough for another 10 minutes
  • Divide the dough into 2 pieces, and roll them out until you have 2 pizza crusts
  • Spread out the pizza crusts onto a parchment
  • Cover the crusts with a towel and set aside again for 30 minutes
  • Preheat the oven (and the baking sheets) to 220°C
  • Get the preheated baking sheets out of the oven
  • Very carefully slide the parchments with the pizza crustst onto the preheated baking sheets (this way the bottom of the crust will get scorched quickly, and you end up with a crunchy crust)
  • Garnish the crusts with the canned tomato cubes, mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, oregano, pepper and salt
  • Bake the pizzas for 15 minutes (until the cheese has melted nicely)
  • Garnish with some basil leaves

Source: adapted from All Recipes

Quinoa Burgers

2 Nov

Quinoa Burgers

Ingredients

for 6 rosemary rolls

  • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 Tbsp dried rosemary
  • 1/2 packet active dry yeast
  • 125ml luke warm water
  • 125g whole wheat flour
  • 75g all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoons salt

for 6 quinoa burgers

  • 100ml water (I always preheat mine in the water boiler)
  • 85g quinoa, uncooked
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped finely
  • 1 can (400g) kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 75g dry breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

Extra

  • 500g fries
  • some lettuce
  • 1 tomato
  • 10 radishes
  • mayonaise or ketchup

Directions

Rosemary rolls

  • In a small bowl, combine olive oil and rosemary; let marinate for at least 30 minutes.
  • Pour the yeast into the luke warm water, stir and set aside for 5 minutes (until it forms some bubbles)
  • Sift the whole wheat flour, all purpose flour and salt into a bowl. Add the yeast mixture and stir with a spoon until the dough forms a ball.
  • Add the olive oil and rosemary and stir some more.
  • Take the dough out of the bowl and knead for about 10 minutes
  • Shape the dough into a ball, and put it back into the bowl.
  • Cover up with a towel and set aside in a warm place for 1 hour (I always preheat my microwave for a minute and then put my bowl in there)
  • Knead again for about 5 minutes
  • Divide the dough into 6 rolls and place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  • Cover the baking sheet with a towel and put aside again for about 1 hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  • Bake the rolls for about 20 minutes, until golden and hollow sounding when tapped
  • Let them cool down on a wire rack.

Quinoa Burgers

  • In a small pot, bring the water to a boil
  • Add the quinoa, cover, and reduce heat to low. Cook until all the liquid is absorbed (around 15 minutes). Set aside
  • Blend the carrot with a mixer until finely chopped
  • Add the cooked quinoa, scallions, garlic, beans, egg, cumin, salt, pepper and 25g of the breadcrumbs
  • Mix until combined but still slightly chunky
  • Divide the mixture into four patties
  • Turn the patties through the rest of the breadcrumbs
  • Heat the oil in a large non-stick skillet. Bake the burgers until browned, about 5 minutes per side

Garnishing

  • Preheat the deep fryer and cook the fries according to the instructions on the package
  • Cut open 4 rolls. Place a pattie on each roll, and garnish with a leaf of lettuce and a slice of tomato.
  • Serve with the fries, a side salad and mayonaise or ketchup

Source:
– Rosemary Rolls: adapted from Recipe Girl
– Quinoa burgers: adapted from Can You Stay For Dinner

Homemade Peanut Butter

2 Nov

I looove peanut butter, but when you buy it at the grocery store, it’s full of things that – according to me – shouldn’t be in there… So I started looking for a recipe for homemade peanut butter, and guess what: it’s easy as 1-2-3!

All you need is some peanuts! I used salted peanuts because I couldn’t find any unsalted ones, but feel free to use whatever you want.

Just throw your peanuts in a bowl (make sure it’s large enough, I ended up with a kitchen full of peanut pieces), and mix the peanuts with an immersion blender. At first, it’ll look like the peanuts just get ground up, but after a while, they’ll start releasing oil and then you end up with a nice and smooth peanut butter. Feel free to stop after a couple of minutes if you like it chunky!

I made my first batch a couple of weeks ago, and it still tasted perfectly when I finished the last bit yesterday. Just make sure to keep it in a pot with a lid in the fridge. And enjoy it endlessly!

Next up on my homemade sandwich filling list is speculoospasta (or Biscoff spread), so stay tuned!

Homemade Peanut Butter

Ingredients

  • Peanuts, salted or unsalted (I used about 150g)

Directions

  • Pour the peanuts into a large bowl
  • Blend the peanuts with an immersion blender until you reach the consistency you like

Source: DIY Natural

Mushroom soup

2 Nov

At first, I want to tell you how much I missed cooking these last 2 days!
On Wednesday, we had a party at the office, which was really nice. It included a wine tasting with accompanying food. Yum, wine!
And yesterday I went to Holland with my mom and sister in law. It was sooo much fun! We shopped ‘til we dropped. I bought all sorts of nice ingredients and cooking stuff, which you will see appear on ‘Julienne’ in the coming days 😉

It’s really nice to be back, so let’s start off with a heart warming fall soup…

Mushroom soup

Ingredients (for 1l soup)

  • 1/2 Tbsp margarine
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium potatoe, peeled and diced (1cmx1cm)
  • 500g mushrooms, brushed clean and chopped into quarters
  • 1 bouillon cube (I used vegetable)
  • 1l water (I always preheat it in the water boiler)
  • salt
  • pepper
  • some basil leaves and cream (I used soy) for garnishing

Directions

  • Preheat the margarine in a medium pot
  • Sauté the onion for 5 minutes
  • Add the diced potato and chopped mushrooms
  • Crumble the bouillon cube over the pot and last but not least: pour in the boiling water.
  • Let the soup simmer for about 10 minutes (you can check if it’s done by putting a knive in one of the potato cubes)
  • Blend the soup with an immersion blender
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper
  • Garnish each bowl with some cream and basil leaves

Lemon-Chia Seed Squares

30 Okt

I just want to start with telling you how A-MA-ZING these squares were! We both enjoyed them endlessly. As we’re speaking, the oven dish is almost finished… And I just baked them.

The recipe asks for lemon zest, so I started zesting a lemon with a fork. I was afraid I’d end up in the hospital this way, so I continued with just chopping some lemon peel really finely. I actually liked it better this way, because you end up with these nice little pieces of peel in your squares.

Another notice: I used a 27cmx18cm oven dish, but that was too large… The squares ended up really flat, so be sure to use a small dish.

Lemon-Chia Seed Squares

Ingredients (for 8 squares)

  • 30g confectioners’ (powdered) sugar
  • 3 Tbsp margarine
  • 60g whole wheat pastry flour
  • 3 Tbsp chiaseeds + 9 Tbsp soy milk or water (set aside for 15 minutes before using the mixture!)
  • 60g cane sugar
  • 2 Tbsp freshly grated lemon zest (first wash the lemons with boiling water and scrub well)
  • 6 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 8 slices of lemon for garnishing

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C and lightly grease the bottom of baking pan
  • Mix the confectioners’ sugar and margarine with a wooden spoon until creamy and light (about 5 minutes)
  • Gradually add the whole wheat flour and stir until the mixture is crumbly
  • Press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan and bake until golden brown (about 10 minutes)
  • Cool on a wire rack and lower the oven temperature to 160°C
  • Meanwhile, whisk the chia until nicely mixed
  • Add the cane sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, all purpose flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk until combined
  • Pour the mixture over the baked crust and return to the oven until “set” (about 20 minutes)
  • Cool completely on a wire rack
  • Cut into 8 squares and garnish with a lemon slice

Source: adapted from Cooking Done Light