Monday, November 26, 2018

Orange, feta, pistachio salad





This is the best thing I’ve eaten in quite a while! I’ve been stuck in a rut, making the same dishes over and over again, for a long time now. Very little time and very little energy. Then I saw a salad with oranges, feta, pistachios and avocado in a magazine and that inspired me to get in the kitchen.

Sure, it’s not cooking as much as assembling. But flavor wise  this will deliver. I ate this with some thinly sliced Serrano ham on the side. It would stand up well on its own, or be a perfect side dish for the holidays. 

Orange, feta & pistachio salad
Serves 1-2

2 oranges, peeled and thinly sliced 
1 avocado, diced
70 g feta cheese, crumbled
2 tbsp pistachio nuts, coarsely chopped
Small handful of raspberries 
Black pepper

Layer in a large salad plate. Finish with grinding of black pepper. 



Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Banana Oatmeal Muffins





Got an itch to bake the other night, and I had - as always - a bunch of bananas going brown on the counter. I wanted something hearty and not overly sweet or rich, and these yummy muffins fit the bill perfectly. They freeze well and heat in the microwave in mere seconds.

Banana Oatmeal Muffins
12 medium sized muffins

375 ml all-purpose flour
250 ml rolled oats
100 ml sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
170 ml milk
80 ml vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
250 ml mashed bananas (I used two and a half)
100 ml walnuts, roughly chopped (optional, of course)

Start by mixing the dry ingredients - flour, oats, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt - in a bowl. In another bowl, whisk the egg. Add milk oil and vanilla, and finally the bananas. Stir in the dry ingredients, and if you want to, walnuts.

Dollop into muffin cases, and bake for about 15 minutes at 200°C. (The time will depend on your oven - a toothpick should come out clean when they're done.)

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Strawberry-Rhubarb Meringue Cake

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This is a wonderful take on classic flavors. I was inspired by a super cute "number cake" I saw on Pinterest, and when Mother's Day was coming up, I decided to make a heart-shaped meringue cake, filled with rhubarb mousse, vanilla whipped cream and plenty of fresh berries. It has a layer of lemon curd as well, to add acidity and a little bit of sharpness. Wonderful cake! It generously served eight, and would have been enough for at least 12.

I would strongly recommend this as a midsommartårta (midsummer's cake) - one of the very best I've made. (And to make this easier to google-find for Swedes - här hittar du den bästa midsommartårtan med jordgubbar och rabarbermousse!)

Now, it's a little bit fiddly, I admit that - but you can prepare almost everything in advance. Make the meringue layers the night before if you have the chance, it's much easier that way. I also made the rhubarb jelly the night before, and then the morning of serving, I whipped cream, used a little bit less than half for the mousse and the rest for decorating. I really advice having piping bags at hand, it helps so much, and that way you can prepare everything, and have it ready in the fridge. Once you fill it, you do want to serve it fairly fast, as with all meringue-based cakes. Otherwise the meringue will eventually melt. But it holds up for at least a few hours!

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Strawberry-Rhubarb Meringue Cake

Meringue layers: 
4 egg whites
200 g sugar

Beat the egg whites until fluffy - add the sugar and beat until you have a very strong and glossy meringue. Fill into a piping bag, and pipe your chosen shape on two lined baking sheets. Be aware that they will grow a LITTLE in the oven, so don't overdo it. You'll have enough for two fairly small rounds (about 8 inches/20 cm) or two larger shapes that aren't filled in, like my hearts.

Bake at 100°C for about one hour. They will be pale beige, and should feel dry to the touch. Remove the sheets and let them cool completely before moving the layers - ideally leave them over night and only remove when you're ready to assemble.

Rhubarb mousse: 
250 g rhubarb, cut into small pieces
75 g sugar
1 leaf of gelatine
200 ml heavy cream, whipped

Put the rhubarb and sugar in a small saucepan and cook until soft. Mash well - a spoon will probably be enough. Soak the gelatine in cold water for five minutes, then add to the rhubarb and stir to melt. Let the rhubarb jelly cool completely. When it's cold, and set, beat it with a stand mixer or similar, and gently mix in the whipped cream. Fill the rhubarb mousse into a piping bag and leave in the fridge for a few hours. (I used a round, plain nozzle for this)

To assemble: 
lemon curd (store bought, about half a jar)
fresh berries
300 ml heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla sugar

Whip the cream with the vanilla sugar - this can be made in advance. Fill in a piping bag, I used a star shaped nozzle for this.

Place one meringue layer on a cake plate. Spread with lemon curd. Pipe rhubarb mousse all over. Place the second layer, and pipe cream all over that. Top with all sorts of berries - you can also use flowers, or candy.

There you have it - an amazing summer cake! I hope you'll like it!

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Cinnamon Bun Cookies





Dear friends. Excuse my absence. Again. By now, it’s clear that my blogging days are sparse. But oh well. That’s life, really. 

Today, let’s make some cookies. Really, please make these. They taste just like Swedish cinnamon buns. If you can’t find pearl sugar, an option would be to Americanize them with a little frosting instead! (After baking.) Or just sprinkle with regular sugar. 

They’ll keep well in the freezer, if you happen to save any. The dough also freezes and thaws well, so I actually make a double batch and freeze some dough when I make these. 

Cinnamon Bun Cookies
about 22 cookies

150 g butter, at room temperature
150 g sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp golden syrup
225 g all-purpose flour
1,5 tsp baking powder
1,5 tsp cardamom, ground
1,5 tsp cinnamon, ground
pinch of salt

topping: 
1 egg, beaten
cinnamon 
pearl sugar

Preheat the oven to 175°C  and prepare a baking sheet with non-stick baking paper. 

Use your Kitchen-Aid (or your fingers) to mix butter, sugar, vanilla, syrup, flour, baking powder, cardamom, cinnamon and salt to a nice smooth dough. Roll it into two lengths and place on the baking sheet. Flatten them a little. 

Brush with egg and sprinkle with a little more cinnamon and pearl sugar. Bake for 8-10 minutes. 

Take out, and let the cookies cool for a few minutes but NOT until they harden. Cut them, diagonally, while they are still warm. 


Sunday, April 15, 2018

Apple Crumb Muffins



My husband is a huge fan of apples in baked goods and I made these apple crumb muffins just for him. They keep very well in the freezer, just give them a few seconds in the microwave. (But if you, like me, use foil tins, make sure to pop them out beforehand!)


Apple Crumb Muffins

100 g butter, melted
2 eggs 
150 ml sugar
1 tsp vanilla sugar
200 ml milk
400 ml flour (240 g)
2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt

Filling: 
2 apples
2 tbsp sugar
cinnamon
1 tbsp butter

Topping: 
75 g cold butter
200 ml oats
100 ml flour
100 ml sugar
pinch of salt 

Start with the filling. Peel, core and dice the apples. Melt the butter and toss with the apples, sugar and a dash of cinnamon.

For the muffins, whisk eggs and sugar until fluffy. Stir in vanilla sugar, flour and baking powder, and milk. Finally add the butter, and also add the apple filling. Dollop into muffin tins or muffin liners in one of those cupcake tins if you have them.

For the topping, mix cold butter with oats, flour, sugar and a pinch of salt until it's grainy and rubbly. A Kitchen-Aid will do it very fast, but your fingertips will suffice as well. Sprinkle this topping on top of the muffins.

Bake at 200°C for about 20 minutes. Check to see that they're cooked through (using a metal tester or a toothpick - it should come out clean) and that the topping is nicely golden.