Thursday, April 27, 2017

Cooking, Travel League

Wednesday I stripped a bought rotisserie chicken (we had had one meal) and then made my Leftover Chicken recipe - can be made with turkey and one can add ham. It is delicious and we both enjoy it. The original recipe was from Paul Holiday a British chef who actually made a pie with this filling but as I am not really into pastry, either making or eating it, I adapted it. I now buy a rotisserie chicken specifically to have one meal and then make this recipe. We also had Italian sausage and peppers for supper so by the evening I was a tad knackered. It seems I have never posted this recipe so I should do so.

Today we are having lunch at the Red Lobster with the members of the Travel League. We are then bowling with them at our regular alley. First time we have joined them for ages. Decided we didn't want to travel out of town in the winter. We then missed the one last month, which was local, because I was having teeth pulled or filled or something.

Salted candies, whether chocolate or caramel, have become very much the "thing" these days. Here is a torte which makes use of them. Of course we don't have double cream here. We can get Carnation Caramel at Amazon.ca if nowhere else. The salted caramels are available in grocery stores in the UK so I imagine they will be available here.

Salted Caramel Chocolate Torte

Indulge guests at your next party with this impressive dessert. A touch of salt really sets off the
caramel and dark chocolate

175 g digestive biscuits
85 g butter, melted
397 g can caramel (we used Carnation caramel)
1 tsp sea salt, plus extra to serve
300 g plain chocolate (70% solids), broken into chunks
600 ml tub double cream
25 g icing sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
salted caramel chocolates, to decorate
single cream, to serve (optional)

1. Line the base of a deep, round 20 cm loose-bottomed cake tin with a circle of baking parchment. Line the sides with one long strip that comes just above the sides of the tin – staple or paper clip where the strip overlaps to hold it in place.

2. Crush the biscuits in a plastic bag or bowl with the end of a rolling pin. Stir into the melted butter, then evenly press into the bottom of the tin. Chill for 10 mins.

3. Reserve 2 tbsp of the caramel. Stir the sea salt into the remainder and spoon into the centre of the biscuit base. Gently spread so the base is evenly covered but a visible 1-2cm border of biscuit remains around the edge. Chill for 20 mins while you make the chocolate layer.

4. Gently melt the chocolate in a large heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Stir 1 tbsp of the cream into the reserved caramel, then cover and chill until ready to decorate. Once the chocolate has melted, turn off the heat but leave the bowl where it is, and gradually stir in the remaining cream until you have a smooth, shiny, thick chocolate sauce. Sift in the icing sugar and stir in with the vanilla extract. Lift off the heat and let the mixture cool for 10 mins.

5. Ladle or pour the chocolate mixture around the edge of the torte first, so it fills the biscuit border, sealing the caramel in the centre. Then ladle or pour in the rest and gently shake to smooth the surface. Chill for at least 5 hrs or up to 24 hours until firm.

6. Remove the torte from the tin, then carefully peel off the strip of paper and transfer to a serving plate. Dot the chocolates on top. Spoon the reserved caramel-cream mixture into a small food or freezer bag. Snip off the tiniest tip of the corner to make a very small opening, then squiggle lines of caramel over the top. Chill until ready to serve. Scatter with a pinch or two of sea salt before serving, then thinly slice. Eat with a drizzle of single cream, if you like.

7. Line the base of a deep, round 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin with a circle of baking parchment. Line the sides with one long strip that comes just above the sides of the tin – staple or paper clip where the strip overlaps to hold it in place.

8. Crush the biscuits in a plastic bag or bowl with the end of a rolling pin. Stir into the melted butter, then evenly press into the bottom of the tin. Chill for 10 mins.

9. Reserve 2 tbsp of the caramel. Stir the sea salt into the remainder and spoon into the centre of the biscuit base. Gently spread so the base is evenly covered but a visible 1-2cm border of biscuit remains around the edge. Chill for 20 mins while you make the chocolate layer.

10. Gently melt the chocolate in a large heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Stir 1 tbsp of the cream into the reserved caramel, then cover and chill until ready to decorate. Once the chocolate has melted, turn off the heat but leave the bowl where it is, and gradually stir in the remaining cream until you have a smooth, shiny, thick chocolate sauce. Sift in the icing sugar and stir in with the vanilla extract. Lift off the heat and let the mixture cool for 10 mins.

11. Ladle or pour the chocolate mixture around the edge of the torte first, so it fills the biscuit border, sealing the caramel in the centre. Then ladle or pour in the rest and gently shake to smooth the surface. Chill for at least 5 hrs or up to 24 hours until firm.

12. Remove the torte from the tin, then carefully peel off the strip of paper and transfer to a serving plate. Dot the chocolates on top. Spoon the reserved caramel-cream mixture into a small food or freezer bag. Snip off the tiniest tip of the corner to make a very small opening, then squiggle lines of caramel over the top. Chill until ready to serve. Scatter with a pinch or two of sea salt before serving, then thinly slice. Eat with a drizzle of single cream, if you like.

13. Line the base of a deep, round 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin with a circle of baking parchment. Line the sides with one long strip that comes just above the sides of the tin – staple or paper clip where the strip overlaps to hold it in place.

14. Crush the biscuits in a plastic bag or bowl with the end of a rolling pin. Stir into the melted butter, then evenly press into the bottom of the tin. Chill for 10 mins.

15. Reserve 2 tbsp of the caramel. Stir the sea salt into the remainder and spoon into the centre of the biscuit base. Gently spread so the base is evenly covered but a visible 1-2cm border of biscuit remains around the edge. Chill for 20 mins while you make the chocolate layer.

16. Gently melt the chocolate in a large heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Stir 1 tbsp of the cream into the reserved caramel, then cover and chill until ready to decorate. Once the chocolate has melted, turn off the heat but leave the bowl where it is, and gradually stir in the remaining cream until you have a smooth, shiny, thick chocolate sauce. Sift in the icing sugar and stir in with the vanilla extract. Lift off the heat and let the mixture cool for 10 mins.

17. Ladle or pour the chocolate mixture around the edge of the torte first, so it fills the biscuit border, sealing the caramel in the centre. Then ladle or pour in the rest and gently shake to smooth the surface. Chill for at least 5 hrs or up to 24 hours until firm.

18. Remove the torte from the tin, then carefully peel off the strip of paper and transfer to a serving plate. Dot the chocolates on top. Spoon the reserved caramel-cream mixture into a small food or freezer bag. Snip off the tiniest tip of the corner to make a very small opening, then squiggle lines of caramel over the top. Chill until ready to serve. Scatter with a pinch or two of sea salt before serving, then thinly slice. Eat with a drizzle of single cream, if you like.

Servings: 8

Source: BBC Good Food

Have a great day
 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Shopping and Cleaning, Medical Marijuana, Pickles,

Quiet day on Tuesday, shopping enabled us to buy the store once again, or I thought that's what had happened. They actually had some artichokes for a change, not been many available lately. I do love those things. I finally got round to a job I've been putting off, cleaning some silver. Trouble is standing doing a job like that causes my back to remind me it's there. Painfully. I think I mentioned  before that a member of our bowling team has been telling me about his wife being on medical marijuana for pain. I am thinking of asking the doctor about that. Matt hit the roof when we talked about it, he cannot understand any difference between being out there and doing drugs, and taking the drug under medical control. We'll see. Mind you, I gather it's very expensive and if our insurance won't help, I won't be doing it anyway. Apparently you can get it to smoke or like gummies. I think he said the gummies are $25 each.

Forgot to mention - the Mexican pickled vegetables I made the other day - I gave a jar to the guys at the bowling alley. When I mentioned it on Monday, they had put them in the fridge and forgotten to take them home. I hope they remembered on Monday evening. I've really been enjoying these pickles, by the way.

Here's a somewhat different way to cook your eggs. My problem - I don't know if I can buy harissa or whether I will have to make my own or use a substitute. The title attracted my attention and then the picture looks so delicious.

Eggs in Purgatory

We're not entirely certain about the history of this classic recipe's name, but perhaps it has something to do with the spicy kick of the sauce. Our version is a shakshuka-like dish in which fiery harissa paste and heady spices slowly infuse a rich tomato sauce where eggs gently poach. Look for jars of harissa with the Middle Eastern foods in your supermarket; you can substitute a half to full teaspoon of crushed red pepper in a pinch. The cook time for the eggs depends on the specific heat of your slow cooker. We offer a range of 15 to 20 minutes, so start checking at 15 minutes (or a couple
minutes earlier) to ensure the eggs get done to your liking. Serve with warm whole-wheat pita.

1 Tbs olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion (from 1 medium onion)
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 (28-oz.) can unsalted crushed tomatoes
2 Tbs harissa
3/4 tsp kosher salt, divided
8 large eggs
1 (5-oz.) pkg. baby spinach
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1. Heat a large skillet over medium. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion, and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add cumin, coriander, paprika, cinnamon, and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until garlic is soft and spices are fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer to a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker.

2. Stir in crushed tomatoes, harissa, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cover and cook on HIGH 20 minutes; reduce heat to LOW, and cook until sauce is fragrant, 7 1/2 to 8 hours (or cook on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours).

3. One at a time, crack eggs into a ramekin, and slip into tomato sauce. (Do not stir.) Cover and cook on HIGH until whites are set and yolks are runny, about 15 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle eggs with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Divide spinach evenly among 4 plates; top with sauce and eggs. Sprinkle with cilantro.

Servings: 4

Author: Julia Levy
Source: Cooking Light

Have a great day