These easy cheesy olive muffins really make a chic and delish appetizer for your holiday dinner parties. They are mainly prepared with flour, milk, eggs, cheeses (Parmesan and fresh goat cheese), green and black olives, and fresh herbs. I have them served with some mixed salad greens, but you can enjoy them just without. A glass of Loire white, like Sancerre, or sauvignon blanc-based white is highly recommended. If you really don't like the common cat-pee smell from sauvignon blanc, then a refreshing riesling would be just as lovely and harmonious.
Recipe adapted from Kabeleins Olivenkuchen mit Ziegenfrischkäse und Salat
I wish you all a Happy and Prosperous New Year!
- 100 g All purpose flour
- 1 tsp Baking powder
- 100 ml Milk
- 80 ml Olive oil
- 2 Eggs
- 60 g Green olives
- 60 g Black olives
- 50 g Fresh grated Parmesan
- 2 tbsp Fresh curly parsley, chopped
- 2 tbsp Fresh rosemary, chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 10 round Fresh goat cheese, 20 grams each
- Some mixed salad to serve
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line 10 wells of a muffin pan with paper liners. Whisk together the flour and baking powder in a mixing bowl. Add in milk, olive oil and egg yolks and beat until smooth. Now add in olives, Parmesan, and chopped herbs. Season the mixture with salt and black pepper.
- Beat the egg whites until stiff. Fold the egg white into the batter until combined. Fill the prepared muffin pan 3/4 full with batter. Top each with one fresh goat cheese round and drizzle with a little of olive oil.
- Bake at the upper rack of the oven for about 12 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Serve the muffins on a bed of mixed salad.
This is basically a clean-out-fridge salad. So depending on what whatsoever greens or leftover in the fridge, you can mix and match so many different ingredients to make delicious and light meals.
- Whisk together plain yogurt, walnut oil, mustard, honey, and red wine vinegar until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and chill until ready for use.
- Cut the ends off endives, separating leaves. Arrange Belgian endive, orange sections and avocado slices in a serving bowl. Scatter with the olive rings, grape tomato halves, and onion strips. Drizzle the dressing over and serve with some bread.
A quick, easy oven-roasted chicken thighs with Ariosto spice mix, fresh rosemary and maple syrup.
- 2 / 550 g Chicken thighs
- 5 Potatoes, peeled and cut into wedges
- 1+1/2 tbsp Ariosto seasoning for meat
- 2 tbsp Duck fat, melted (or olive oil)
- 8 Grape tomatoes
- A few sprigs of fresh rosemary
- 1 tbsp Maple syrup
- Heat oven to 200C/400F. Thoroughly clean the chicken legs with warm water and drain. Make a couple of slits on the meaty part of chicken thighs. Peel the potatoes and cut into wedges.
- Place the cleaned chicken legs and the prepared potato wedges in a shallow baking tray, add in Ariosto seasoning and melted duck fat, then toss until well-coated. Add in grape tomatoes and rosemary sprigs.
- Bake for 35 minutes until chicken and potatoes are fork tender. Brush the chicken with maple syrup and broil for 5 minutes.
Few things make your house smell like festive holidays as much as the delicious baked treats fresh out of the oven. Made with fresh ginger, crystallized ginger, Christmas spices, molasses, maple syrup, these ginger snaps are packed with flavours and a great reminder of Christmas. Recipe adapted from Cook's Companion by Carole Clements and Essen und Trinken
To all my friends and readers, I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas with Good Mood, Real Food and Love!
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Prepare 3 baking trays with parchment paper. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, and salt in a mixing bowl.
- Beat the golden caster sugar and butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add in egg, molasses, maple syrup, and fresh ginger. With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Beat until incorporated.
- Fold in the crystallized ginger. Cover with a plastic film and chill for 1 hour. Shape the dough into 1-inch balls. Roll the balls in the sugar, and place about 2-inch apart on the prepared baking tray.
- Bake until the cookies are just firm to the touch, about 12 minutes or 15 minutes if you prefer them crisp. Transfer the ginger snaps to wire racks and let cool completely. Store the cookies in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
Risotto is really delicious at any time of the day and the addition of beetroot makes this pretty much a super-food, as beetroot are a rich source of potent antioxidants and nutrients. Next time I am going to scatter some
- 200 g Cooked beetroot
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 Shallot, finely chopped
- 1 clove Garlic, minced
- 130 g Risotto rice
- 80 ml White wine
- 400 ml Hot vegetable stock
- 2 tbsp Parmesan, finely grated
- Handful of arugula
- Puree half of the cooked beetroot and cut another half into small pieces. Ser aside. Heat the olive oil in a pan. Tip in shallot and garlic, then stir until translucent. Stir in rice until well-coated with oil. Pour in the white wine and beetroot puree. Simmer until all is absorbed.
- Pour in a third of the hot vegetable stock and set the timer to 18 mins. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the stock has been absorbed, then add half the rest of the stock and continue cooking and stirring until that has been absorbed.
- Add in the rest of the stock, stir, then simmer until cooked. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in most of the Parmesan, arugula and the diced beetroot through the risotto. Serve with Parmesan and arugula scattered on top.
Rosemary, with its unforgettable pine-like fragrance, pungent flavour, and unique health benefits, is an indispensable herb for every kitchen.
They are often used to flavour meat, fish, sauces or soups. Besides its well-known culinary use, rosemary has been used in cosmetic and to treat digestive disorders and headaches.
Adapted from BBC Good Food
- 325 g All purpose flour
- 200 g Salted butter
- 125 g Caster sugar
- 2 Egg yolks
- 1 tbsp Rosemary
©angiesrecipes, finely chopped
- 60 g Walnuts, chopped
- Put the flour and butter in a food processor and whizz until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs. Add the sugar, egg yolks and rosemary and whizz to a dough.
- Tip onto a lightly floured work surface and knead in the walnuts. Shape into a log about 5cm across. Wrap in plastic and chill for an hour.
- Line two baking trays with paper. Heat the oven to 180C/350F. Slice the dough into biscuits and arrange on the prepared trays. Bake for 20 minutes until lightly golden brown. Remove and transfer to the wire racks to cool.
A delicious and simple salad with fresh oranges and quality vacuum packed cooked beetroot served with orange caper dressing. d makes The contrast of colours makes the salad extremely appetizing and pleasing.
- 2 Cooked Beetroot, cut into 4mm thick slices
- 2 Oranges
- 1 tbsp Flat parsley leaves, chopped
- 3 tbsp Orange juice
- 1 tsp Honey
- 20 ml Olive oil
- Salt and fresh ground Pepper
- 1 tbsp Red onion, finely chopped
- 10 Capers
- Slice the cooked beetroot into 4mm thick slices. Peel the oranges, removing the white pith and slice into 4mm slices.
- Place orange juice, honey, olive oil in a jar, season with salt and pepper. Close the lid and give it a good shake. Add in chopped red onions and capers. Mix thoroughly.
- Arrange the orange and beetroot slices alternately in a row on a serving platter. Pour the dressing over and sprinkle the chopped parsley on top. Serve immediately.
|And I also want to thank Alisha of The Ardent Epicure and Sara of The Lonely Radish for sharing this award with me. THANK YOU!|
Linzer cookies based on traditional Austrian Linzertorte, are one of the common Christmas cookies in Germany. They are nutty, rich and SWEET. Traditionally they are filled with black currant jam, but any other fruit preserves can be used to fill the cookies. Rather than almonds, nuts such as hazelnuts, pecan, can be substituted to make Linzer dough.
Created in Linz, Austria in the 17th century, the Linzer torte is the world's oldest torte recipe. Tortes use nuts rather than flour as the main dough ingredient. The Linzer torte features an almond-based crust filled with black current preserves and topped with a lattice crust. In the 19th century, the Linzer torte was adapted into the present-day Linzer cookie.Recipe adapted from Spitzbuben mit Gluehweingelee
|Mulled Wine Jelly||Cookie Dough|
- Cut the orange into halves, put the half of the orange face down on the juicer and rotate it to get the juice. Place orange juice, red wine, canning sugar, star anises, cinnamon stick, and cloves in a saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer for about 4 minutes. Strain the jelly through a sieve. Set aside.
- Beat butter, sugar, pinch of salt and egg yolk until combined. Add in ground almond, spekulatius spice and flour. Mix all the ingredients together with your hands until you have smooth dough. Flatten the dough into a 5-inch disk. Wrap the disk in plastic wrap and chill until firm, at least 1 hour.
- Line 2 baking trays with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Roll out the dough into a 4mm thick round between 2 sheets of wax paper. Cut 2-inch rounds with a plain or fluted cutter and place them on the prepared trays. With half of the rounds, cut a hole from the middle of each round with a heart or flower shaped cutter.
- Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, until the edges begin to brown. Allow to cool to room temperature. Spread mulled wine jelly thinly on the flat side of each solid cookie. Dust the top of the cut-out cookies with confectioners' sugar and press the flat sides together. Fill the holes with little more jelly. Store them in your cookie box, separating the layers with waxed paper, and store for up to 2 weeks.
These nice soft avocado cookies with a mild tang of sweetness, subtle nutty flavour, and buttery richness are sure to liven up your holiday tea parties. They also make great gifts for the elderly relatives and neighbours.
Recipe adapted from Vegan Yum Yum
- 100 g Butter
- 1/2 Avocado, mashed
- 120 g 0.1% Cream cheese
- 120 g Sugar
- 2 tbsp Lemon juice
- 1 tbsp Poppy seeds
- 230 g All purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp Baking soda
- Line 2-3 baking trays with paper. Cream butter, mashed avocado, cream cheese, and sugar together. Add lemon juice and poppy seeds, and beat until light and fluffy.
- Add in flour, baking soda and mix until incorporated. Fill your piping bag fitted with a star tip half full with cookie batter and pipe out cookies onto the prepared trays. Alternatively you can use a cookie gun to press any desired patterned cookies.
- Preheat oven to 190C/375F. Bake for 12-15 minutes until the cookies are lightly golden. Transfer them on the wire rack to cool.
Brussels sprouts, great food source of vitamin A, vitamin C, folic acid and dietary fibre, make the perfect holiday side dish. Simply season them with salt, pepper, garlic powder and tossed with olive oil, then roast until beautifully carmelized. And the leftover can be quickly turned into a delicious pasta for lunch!
Recipe adapted from Steamy Kitchen
|For Brussels Sprouts||Cranberry Pistachio Pesto|
- Preheat oven to 200C/400F. To trim Brussels sprouts, first cut off the stem end and remove any loose or wilted leaves. Cut the Brussels sprouts in half, lengthwise. Place them in a bowl, and season with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Add the olive oil and toss until thoroughly coated.
- Transfer to a shallow baking dish large enough to hold the sprouts in single layer. Roast until the sprouts are browned on the outside and tender on the inside, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes.
- Place the pistachios, cranberries, roasted garlic and flat parsley into a food processor and process until very finely chopped. While the food processor is running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Serve the roasted Brussels sprouts with the cranberry pistachio pesto.
This is rather a simple, modest, yet very flavourful, filling and soul-satisfying risotto dish that's quick and easy to make. From vegetables, fruit to meat, poultry, and seafood, the variations are endless, just like pasta. Get yourself a glass of Valpolicella Classico Superiore or Pinot Grigio if you prefer white, and enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Essen und Trinken
- 1 Onion, finely diced
- 3 tbsp Olive oil
- 150 g Risotto rice
- 1 clove Garlic, minced
- 50 ml White wine
- Salt and black pepper
- 200 g Salmon steak
- 500 ml Vegetable stock, hot
- 2 tbsp Chopped dill
- 2 tbsp Green peas
- 2 tbsp Creme fraiche
- Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet on medium heat. Add in the diced onion and stir until tender. Add in risotto rice and minced garlic. Stir until rice becomes translucent. Pour in the white wine. Simmer until the wine is absorbed.
- Cut the salmon into inch-sized dices. Season with salt and pepper. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add in diced salmon and cook until lightly golden.
- Season the risotto with salt and pepper. When the wine is all absorbed, add half of the hot stock and keep stirring, until that has been absorbed. Pour in the rest of stock, stirring frequently until the rice is cooked al dente. This will take 20 minutes or more.
- Add in chopped dill, green peas and creme fraiche. When the rice is cooked, gently stir the pan-fried diced salmon into the risotto, and cook for a further 1-2 minutes to heat through. Season, to taste, with salt and black pepper and serve.
This is a very nutritious and delicious loaf with spelt, wholewheat, flaxseed and honey. It has become one of our favourite breakfast bread recipes and it's perfect for a lunch sandwich too. Flaxseeds contain high levels of dietary fiber, are high in omega-3 fatty acids, and may lower cholesterol level, stabilize blood-sugar levels and reduce the risk of heart attacks, provide antioxidants and may play a role in decreasing your risk of cancer.
- 200 g Spelt #1050 flour
- 150 g Wholewheat flour
- 5 g Instant dry yeast
- 1 tsp Salt
- 120 ml Milk
- 60 ml Water
- 50 g Honey
- 1 tbsp Butter
- 1 Egg
- 2-3 tbsp Flaxseeds
- 1 tbsp Butter, melted
- In a large bowl, combine the spelt flour, wholewheat flour, undissolved yeast, and salt. Heat the milk, water, honey, and butter until the mixture combined and warm.
- Make a well in the center, and gradually add the milk mixture and the egg to the flour mixture. Stir at slow speed for 2 minutes, then stir in flaxseeds until well-combined. Increase the speed and stir until soft dough forms. Turn the dough out onto the lightly floured surface and knead until the dough smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.
- Shape the dough into a round and place in a large, lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a cling film and leave to rise in a warm place for 1 hour, or until it doubles in size. Roll out dough to a rectangle, about 12x8 inch/30x20 cm. Roll it up, starting from the short end, and pinch the seam to seal.
- Place, seam side down, in a standard loaf pan lined with baking paper. Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Bake at 180C/350F for 30 to 35 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. Brush the top with melted butter. Cool on the wire rack.
Who doesn't love buttery and flaky croissants? They are rich, decadent and irresistible! According to Jeffrey Hamelman, when you know it's a good croissant after you take a bite and look at your shirt: if it’s covered with flakes of golden pastry that shatter from each bite, then it's a good one. It took me two days to make 16 croissants, and my husband finished 4 at one go in 20 minutes. So I strongly suggest you double the recipe!
- 250 ml Whole milk
- 30 g Fresh yeast
- 40 g Brown sugar
- 300 g Spelt #630 flour
- 100 g Whole spelt flour
- 2 tsp Salt
- 300 g Cold and unsalted butter
- 1 Egg, lightly beaten
- Stir together warm milk, brown sugar, and fresh yeast in bowl of standing mixer and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add spelt flours, and salt and mix with dough hook at low speed until dough is smooth and soft, about 5 minutes.
- Transfer the dough to a work surface and knead by hand 2 minutes, adding more flour as necessary, a little at a time, to make a soft, slightly sticky dough. Wrap the dough with a cling film and chill for 1 hour.
- Place butter between two sheets of cling film and roll with a rolling pin to form 8x5 inch/20x12 cm rectangle. Chill until firm. Remove the dough from the fridge and roll out on a lightly floured surface into a 16x10 inch/40x25 cm rectangle.
- Arrange dough with a short side nearest you. Put butter in center of dough so that long sides of butter are parallel to short sides of dough. Fold the bottom up over the butter, brushing off any excess flour, and then fold the top down over the butter to seal the butter.
- With a heavy rolling pin, roll the dough into a rectangle, approximately 15x10 inch/38x25 cm. Fold the length of dough into thirds, as for a letter. Turn so that the open ends are at twelve and six o'clock. The first simple “fold” is completed. Wrap well in plastic and chill overnight.
- Repeat the simple fold one more time. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic and chill 1 hour. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and place on the floured work surface. Unwrap and roll out to a rectangle, about 15x10 inch/38x25 cm. This time fold the top and bottom in so that they meet in the middle of the dough, then fold the dough in half again so that there are four layers of dough. Chill the dough, wrapped with plastic, in the fridge for 2 hours. Repeat the double fold once more. This is the final fold before rolled out and cut into croissants.
- To shape the croissants, roll the dough into a 25x15 inch/64x38 cm rectangle on a lightly floured work surface. It should be about 1/4 inch/6mm thick. From the long side, fold the dough into half and using a yardstick as a guide mark the folded strip into 8 triangles and the scrapings of dough at each end. Cut each double triangle into two. So you’ll have 16 triangles.
- Make a small slit in the base of each triangle, place a piece of dough trimming at the base. Starting at the base of the triangle, roll the dough up into a log. Tuck the tip the triangle under the body of the croissant. Bend in two corners to form the crescent shape.
- Place the croissants on a baking sheet and allow them to rise for 1 to 2 hours until almost doubled in size. Half an hour before finishing the proofing, brush the croissants with the lightly beaten egg. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F with a shallow dish filled with water at the bottom of oven. Bake the croissants for 20-25 minutes. Allow them to cool on a rack before serving.