When I satisfy my sweet tooth I’d rather go for a homemade recipe like this apple crumb cake instead of an icing covered, cream filled pastry. This recipe comes from smittenkitchen but instead of using blueberries I caramelised apples, which are in season. Continue reading
During the making of this cake my house smelled wonderful and the great thing is that my dog’s fur was perfumed by it for days. The “poor” creature got even more hugs than she usually does. I shared this cake with some friends and the following day, the whole treat was just a memory 🙂
Apple Crumb Cake
Recipe for a 22-24 cm cake pan with high sides
Prep time: 25-30 min
Cook time: 45-50 min
For the caramelised apples:
2 large dessert apples
1 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. sugar
For the topping:
40 g flour
100 g sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
55 g butter
A pinch salt
For the cake:
240 g flour
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
55 g soft butter
150 g sugar
1 tbsp. orange zest (or lemon)
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1.2 dl milk
50 g hazelnuts (I used dry roasted ones)
Grease and flour a 23-24 baking tin with high sides and line it with baking paper.
Peel and core the apples and cut them into about 1 cm cubes. Heat sugar and butter in a pan and once the sugar starts to melt add the apples. Cook for about 5 minutes tossing occasionally, until the apples have caramelised. Once done set them aside.
Prepare the topping by adding tall the ingredients to a bowl and crumbling them with the tip of your fingers. Once the preparation is crumbly set it aside.
For the cake use a bowl to mix flour, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl whisk the butter and sugar together until the preparation is soft and light. Add the vanilla extract and the egg and beat until just combined. Add about 1/3 of the flour mix and beat until just combined. Add half of the milk mix and repeat with the remaining ingredients, ending with the flour. Fold in the caramelised apples until they’re evenly distributed. Transfer the cake batter to the tin and distribute it evenly.
Roughly chop the hazelnuts and scatter them on the surface of the cake. Now add the streusel topping and distribute it evenly.
Bake in the oven for 35-40 min. Test cake readiness with a toothpick: if it comes out dry, it’s ready. Let the cake cool for at least 20 minutes before removing it from its mould. Optionally dust with powdered sugar.
The festive season is basically here, from here to Christmas we’re booked for dinners basically every weekend day. Tomorrow for example we’re going to a friend’s company dinner. The funny thing is we’re not part of the company but he’s a lawyer and since in the office it’s only him and his secretary, he always bulks up the guest list by multiplying it by five or six times. Although I really like these social events, I know I won’t really be able to stick to my usual vegetarian way (I don’t like to be the fussy guest) and so I aim to enjoy every bit of my meals. One thing I couldn’t live without except from cheese? The super fun and versatile potatoes! It Italian the saying goes: “In cucina la patata è regina.” In English this translates as “In the kitchen the potato is queen.” I totally agree so here is an easy and oh so crispy carrot and potato cakes recipe.
Carrot Potato Cakes
Recipe for 4/ about 16-20 units
Prep time: 20 min.
Cook time: 15-20 min. per batch
400 g potatoes (peeled)
200 g carrots (peeled)
3 tbsp. cream
1 small onion
1/3 tsp. salt and pepper
1 small tbsp. thyme leaves
Vegetable oil or roasting butter
Heat oven at 70°C.
Using a medium holed grater, grate the potatoes and the carrots, and then place them in a clean tea towel and squeeze out most of the moisture.
Finely chop the onion and add it to the potatoes and carrots along with the cream, thyme leaves, salt and pepper and mix all the ingredients together.
Place a non-stick pan on a medium heat and add about 1 tbsp. oil or butter to heat. Take a tablespoon of the grated vegetable mix and place it in the pan, using the back of the spoon to flatten the cake. Cook for about 7-10 minutes per side, until the cakes have browned on both sides. Work in batches and once the cakes are ready, place them in the oven to keep them warm while preparing the rest. The pan I used has a 22-24 cm diameter and I could fit about 5-6 cakes per batch.
Serve as a side dish or as an appetizer, maybe with a yoghurt dip.
It hasn’t snowed yet in the southern part of Switzerland but temperatures have significantly changed. When I wake up in the morning all seems frozen and this sight is enough to enter in soup mood. Continue reading
Most of the time I make something with the vegetables at hand but this time I felt like making something creamier. Cauliflower and cheese are a great flavour combination so instead baking it in a gratin or mixing it with some pasta; I thought this would be a nice alternative. In the beginning I thought of only making a cheese soup but then I changed my mind and in the end, I also added the cauliflower.
Cauliflower Gruyere Soup
Recipe for 4-6
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time:20-25 min
500 g cauliflower florets
240 g potatoes
160 g Gruyere cheese
2-3 garlic cloves
1 tbsp. butter
0.9-1 l vegetable stock
Finely chop the garlic. Peel the potatoes and cut them into about 1 cm cubes. Eventually cut the florets into smaller pieces if they are very large. Coarsely grate the Gruyere cheese.
Melt the butter in a pan and add the garlic to cook on a low to medium fire for 4-5 min. Once it has softened add the potatoes and the vegetable stock, bring to a simmer and cook for about 10 min or until the potatoes you can easily insert a knife in them. Add the cauliflower florets and continue simmering for another 8-10 min.
Now you have two choices: either place everything in a food processor which will be more straightforward but the end result will be less smooth. The second alternative is to pass the soup through a strainer and set aside the liquid while you only process the solid ingredients before mixing everything back together.
Replace the soup on a low fire until it simmers again then remove it, add pepper to taste and the cheese and stir until it has melted. Serve with crusty bread and eventually top with dry roasted almonds, walnuts, chia seeds or whatever suits your taste.