Recipe Trials on a Rainy Day!

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Well on a rainy weekend I mostly spend my time at home!

Nothing much to do, so why not get the cooking rolling. I’ve been wanting to try a couple of cookie recipes that might work for Christmas.

I tried one on Saturday and one today; check them out. Do you like them?

Mature Christmas Cake

Every Christmas my mother prepares what she calls the “Christmas Cake”, as she always used to narrate; it’s an English cake that’s been there for hundreds of years. Prepared weeks ahead and served for guests during the season.

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I checked a couple of books and recipe websites maybe I find the secrets of this cake, and here what I found:
o    This fruitcake recipe is over 100 years old.
o    It’s a rich, dark and a moist fruit cake.
o    It requires 2 days to make.
o    It requires 3 weeks to ripen; where the cake is moistened with orange juice or rum for almost 3 to 4 weeks. *the rum helps preserve it and ripen it.
o    It’s usually decorated with marzipan (almond base) and a thick sugary frosting.
o    It’s usually prepared by end of November, but some even prepare it in October.

As interesting as it can be, I found a good recipe on one of the Lebanese Brands “Recipe Section” that I’ll be trying out this year >> Dark Fruit Cake!
I found the picture on BBC Good Foods website, you can check their recipe via this link >> Make & Mature Christmas Cake.

Will let you know how it goes 😉

“Recette de Vie” in London!

There is nothing better than old home cooking!

I’ve participated in “Recette de Vie” recipe book, which was launched earlier this month in Lebanon.

I shared two dessert recipes:
1.    Charlotte Cake with Fruits
2.    Sable with Chocolate and Halawa

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Recette de Vie is a Lebanese recipe book with a collection of more than 200 original recipes from the friends and family of Authors Maissa Abou Adal Ghanem and Ghia Khayat Hawari, all of whom share culinary secrets and tasty treats.
… and that’s the best part!!! All proceeds will be distributed to charities that defend the rights of women and children :)

The book is available in two languages: English and French and can be found at the below bookstores – Lebanon:

•    Librairie Stephan, Achrafieh
•    Librairie Orientale, Achrafieh
•    L’Artisan du Liban, Saifi
•    L’Artisan du Liban, Clemenceau
•    Sel & Poivre, Sofil
•    Librairie Alphabet, Jounieh and
•    Librairie Maliks, all point of sales
•    Orthopedic and Sport Clinic (OSC), Aantari
•    Aziz, Aantari
•    Aziz, Zalka
•    Les Caves de TAillevent, Jardins de Tabaris, Achrafieh
•    AUB museum Shop, bliss street
•    Bulthaup store
•    The studio, Beit Mery

Maissa and Ghia will be launching the book in “London”; check the link for more details.

Keep up the great work and best of luck to Maissa and Ghia. Show them the support and add this amazing book to your library.

Charlotte Cake with Fruits

When we were kids, my mom used to prepare layered Charlotte Cake with jello and cream. As time passed by I started searching for varied recipes of Charlotte Cake as I loved “Ladyfingers” including fruits, cheese, cream etc. and so I reached the best, easiest and most delicious Charlotte cake recipe with fruits.

Preparation mode: No Bake Cake
Preparation time: 20 Minutes
Number of people: 15 people

Charlotte Cake with Fruits
Ingredients

•    850 can Fruit Salad (Chopped Fruits in Juice)
•    400g (4 packets) Ladyfingers
•    250 ml Pineapple Juice
•    1 Sheet Gelatin
•    1 tsp cognac
•    1 L Whipping Cream (liquid)
•    3/4  cup Sugar
•    1 tsp Vanilla

Preparation method

1-    The cream: Add the whipping cream, sugar and vanilla in a mixer and mix until a fluffy cream is formed. Fridge.
2-    Drain the fruits from the juice.
3-    Take the fruit juice and add to it the pineapple juice in a separate bowel with a teaspoon of cognac
4-    Add the gelatine sheet in cold water for few minutes, then microwave until the gelatine melts.
5-    Add the gelatine to the juice and mix to homogenize
6-    Use a cheesecake pan to prepare the Charlotte Cake
7-    Dip the ladyfingers in the juice and stack one after the other on the sides of the pan, then fill in the bottom.
Ie. All the ladyfingers used in the cake are dipped in juice.
8-    The add 3 layer of ladyfingers > cream > fruits; until the tip of the sides
9-    Fridge for 30 minutes.
10-    To prepare the topping: mix ¼ cup jello with 2 tablespoons of strawberry jam and add on the top.
11-    Decorate to taste with cream.
12-    Fridge for few hours then remove the sides of the cheesecake pan and serve cold.

Personal tips: Add 1 sheet of gelatine to the dipping juice as it will keep the cake together.
This recipe appeared in the book “Recette De Vie”, which was launched to 2014 to support women and children charities.

Sable with Chocolate and Halawa

I love to prepare sable at home. One day I had leftovers of chocolate and halawa in my fridge. So the idea crossed my mind! Why not prepare Sable with a Lebanese twist using our artistic halawa, and it turned out to be the best combination ever.

Sable with Halva

Preparation mode: Baking
Preparation time: 45 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes
Number of people: 70 pieces

Sable with halawa
Ingredients

750g Sable Dough
200g Halawa, cut into small cubes
200g Dark Chocolate Chips
100g Pistachio, crushed

Preparation method

1-    From the dough into round sable cookies and bake for 10 minutes
2-    Meanwhile, cut the halawa into small cubes and melt the chocolate chips in bain marie or in the microwave.
3-    As soon as the sable dough are ready, remove and press in the halawa cubes (the halawa will stick on the hot dough)
4-    Keep to cool for 5 minutes
5-    Cover each sable with melted dark chocolate
6-    Decorate with crushed pistachio nuts
7-    Cool and serve.
Personal tips: Add the halawa cubes directly after the sable cookies are removed from the oven. The sable needs to be hot so the halawa can stick well.

This recipe appeared in the book “Recette De Vie”, which was launched to 2014 to support women and children charities.

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