Mediterranean Roast Lamb with Mint Chimichurri

Mediterranean Roast Lamb with Mint Chimichurri, what’s not to love?

This recipe is simple, fuss-free and turns out perfect every time, lamb is very forgiving since it’s quit a fatty cut of meat so it will not dry out easily. However I do put a small baking dish at the bottom of the oven filled with water to humidify the oven.
If you can, buy a piece of lamb with the bone still in, and although carving without the bone may be easier, the bone adds a lot of flavour to the meat during cooking.
Also it adds so much flavour to the potatoes and onions on the bottom, they are basically being cooked in all the lamb juices and drippings.

Personal I prefer the lamb medium done with a hint of pink. But you may cook it longer if you prefer.
________________________________________
Serves : 4-6
Total cooking time : ca. 2 hours
Roasting Temperature: First 20 minutes 200° C / 395° F.
Remaining time : 160° C / 320° F
________________________________________

General cooking times:
Rare: about 15 minutes per pound
Medium-Rare: about 20 minutes per pound
Medium: about 25 minutes per pound
Well-Done: about 30 minutes per pound
These times are only guidelines. It is best to check with a thermometer since not all cuts cook the same.

INGREDIENTS:


• 1 (4 pound) bone-in leg of lamb
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 3 tablespoons olive oil
• 2 large cloves garlic, minced or grated
• 1 tbsp. chopped parsley
• 2 tsp. chopped fine fresh rosemary
• 1 tsp. thyme leafs
• 1 tsp. mustard
• 1 glass of dry white wine
• 1/2 cup of stock
• 3 medium onions peeled and sliced in 1/4 inch / 1/2 cm.
• 5 medium potatoes, peeled and sliced in 1/2 inch / 1 cm
• 1 x Chimichurri sauce recipe

 

INSTRUCTIONS:

Take the leg of lamb out of the refrigerator about an hour before cooking to let it get to room temperature.
Pre heat the oven to 200° C / 395° F.
Remove any excess skin from the leg of lamb and discard. Pat dry with kitchen paper.
Cut incisions with a sharp knife all over the leg of lamb, just a few times to make cooking more even and so the herbs and flavouring can penetrate into the lamb.
Season the lamb liberally with salt and pepper all over.
In a small bowl mix the olive oil, mustard, chopped herbs and grated garlic.
Rub the lamb with the olive oil and herb mixture.
Cover your baking tray with parchment paper and drizzle with a little olive oil.
Prepare your onions and potatoes.
Place the slices of onion on the bottom and then top with the potato slices.
Place the lamb on top. Pour the remaining herb and olive oil mix over the potatoes.
Add the wine and stock and place the lamb in the middle of the oven.
Roast for 20 minutes then lower the heat to 160° C / 320° F and cook for another 100 minutes (1 hr and 40 min) .
If the lamb gets to dark cover loosely with foil. Make sure to baste the lamb with the juices every 30 minutes.
Uncover the lamb for the last 15 to 20 minutes for a crispy outside, if you used foil.
Depending on how you like your lamb done; Continue cooking the lamb until it has reaches your desired internal temperature, (if using a thermometer) , checking the temperature every 20 minutes. The other way to test is by pulling/cutting off a piece of meat.
Let the lamb rest for at least 15 minutes before carving.
To carve the lamb. Place the lamb on a cutting board. Turn it so the bone is parallel to the cutting board.
Cut the lamb off the bone by slicing with your knife parallel to the bone. Serve with the potatoes and onions.
Serve the Mint Chimichurri sauce along side.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

Jamaican Jerk Chicken Kebabs, Coconut brown rice and roast Broccoli

Jamaican Jerk kebabs are so delicious and easy!

The great thing with this recipe is that you just blitz the marinade in the blender, pour it over the cubed chicken and let the magic begin. They end up being so juicy and tender and flavourful, that I honestly don’t know why I don’t make every week.
As for the coconut rice……mmmmmh. I love brown rice because of the bite it has but if you prefer white rice go right ahead, adjust the cooking time accordingly because this brown rice I have from my health food store takes about 40 minutes because it is completely raw and hasn’t been pre cooked. So check the package before you start with whichever rice you choose, you don’t want to end up with rice pudding. You may have to adjust the cooking liquid accordingly.
The roast Broccoli is actually one of my favourite cooking methods for cauliflower and broccoli and I rarely eat it any other way. I always make twice as much for my Buddha Bowl or salad the next day. I pre steam the Broccoli in the microwave for two to three minutes with just the water that’s attached from rinsing. Then throw it into a hot frying pan with a drizzle of olive oil and salt. Simple can be soooo good.

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS:

For the Jamaican Jerk kebabs:
• 1 lb. Chicken breast, cubed
• 4 spring onions
• 2 garlic cloves
• 1 red chili
• 1 piece of fresh ginger, peeled
• 1 tsp. Cumin
• 1 tsp. Smoked paprika
• 1 tsp. dry thyme
• Juice of one orange
• 2 tbsp. honey
• 1 tsp. allspice
• 3/4 tsp. Salt
• 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
• freshly ground pepper

For the Broccoli:
• 1 lb. Broccoli florets
• 2 -3 tsp. Olive oil
• Salt to taste
For the Coconut rice:
• 1 1/2 C. brown or whole grain rice rinsed
• 2 C. Coconut milk
• 2 – 3 C. water
• 1 small onion chopped fine
• 1 clove garlic peeled and grated
• 1/2 tsp. Salt

INSTRUCTIONS:

For the coconut rice:
1. Put the coconut milk and 2 cups of water in a large pot with the onion garlic and salt.
2. Bring to a simmer.
3. Wash the rice thoroughly until water runs clear.
4. Add to the pot.
5. Bring to a simmer again and cook for about 40 minutes depending on which rice you use.
6. Add more water if necessary.
7. When the rice is done, drain.
8. Turn off the heat, but leave the pot on the burner, covered. Allow the rice to sit for another 5 to 10 minutes, or until you’re ready to eat. Your coconut rice will stay warm this way.
9. Fluff the rice with a fork, and serve

For the chicken:
1. Place all the ingredients for the marinade in a food processor.
2. Blend until it is pureed.
3. Place the chicken cubes in a glass bowl and pour over the marinade.
4. Leave to marinate for a few hours or overnight.
5. Take out of the marinade and pat dry the chicken dry with kitchen paper.
6. Thread on to wooden skewers.
7. Heat griddle pan to medium.
8. Brush kebabs with a little oil.
9. Cook for about 5 – 7 minutes depending on size, turning frequently.
For the Broccoli :
1. Rinse the Broccoli florets thoroughly.
2. Place in a microwave safe bowl and cover partially or use a special steamer.
3. Microwave for 3 minutes.
4. Remove from microwave and let the steam evaporate.
5. Heat a large frying pan and add the oil.
6. Add the Broccoli and fry until golden and crispy on medium high heat. About 5 minutes.
To put the bowl together:
Place some rice in a bowl, Add the roast broccoli. Place the Jamaican Jerk Chicken kebabs on top and serve with mango, radishes, lime wedges and mango chutney.

Enjoy!
Myra. XO

Gluten Free Bread Loaf

I’ve been testing some gluten free flour mixes and this is the best one so far, I can use it in any recipe requiring regular flour, in a one to one ratio, so no further calculating is necessary.
I have been using it for my quick gluten free bread loaf, pancakes and even pizza bases.

GLUTEN FREE ALL PURPOSE FLOUR MIX;
In a large bowl mix;
150 gr. potato starch (or corn starch)
150 gr. tapioca flour
200 gr. brown rice flour
200 gr. oat flour
300 gr. white rice flour
1 tsp xanthan gum

Stir until everything is mixed very well and store in an airtight container.


Prep time : 30 minutes (this includes making the flour mix)
Cooking time: 60 minutes
Makes : 1 loaf

INGREDIENTS;
• 3 1/2 – 3 3/4 cups gluten free all purpose flour mix
• 2 tsp. instant yeast
• 1 tsp himalayan salt
• 2 1/2 cups plus 1 or 2 tablespoon warm water
• 1 tbsp. honey or agave syrup
• 1 tsp. (apple cider) vinegar
• 2 tbsp. melted coconut oil or olive oil

INSTRUCTIONS;
1. Combine 3 1/2 cups of flour mix, the instant yeast and salt in mixer bowl and whisk until thoroughly combined.
2. In a jug measure out the warm water and add the agave or honey, the apple cider vinegar and coconut oil.
3. Add to flour mixture.
4. Mix on medium speed for 5 minutes. It should be the consistency of a thick batter which is too thick to pour but not thick enough to form a ball. Add additional water or flour 1 tablespoon at a time as needed to get this consistency.
5. Generously grease bottom and sides of 1 loaf pan. I find cooking spray works best, but you can use butter or oil.
6. Spread batter in loaf pan, slice down the middle with a very sharp knife. (see photo)
7. Let rise in warm place for about an hour. Covered loosely with cling film that has been sprayed with a little oil.
8. Preheat oven to 190°C / 375°F
9. Bake for 40-50 minutes, until bread looks firm and is fairly brown on top. Knock on it and if it sounds hollow it’s done.
10. Let cool for 20-30 minutes in pan before removing to wire rack.
11. Let cool completely before slicing.
12. I like to brush the loaf with a little olive oil for shine
13. It will keep for only three days tops, so I slice it and freeze it and take out as needed.
NOTE: You can add things like sesame seeds, or sunflower seeds to the dough if you like, not more than a 1/4 cup. Sprinkle some on the top too!

Enjoy!
Myra XO

Chocolate Truffle Salted Caramel Pie

Melt in your mouth, salty, caramel chocolate heaven

If you’re looking for an impressive dessert that has a wonderful balance of sweet and salty, then this is your recipe. Each component is relatively easy and it’s also a perfect recipe for assembling ahead of time.

Serves: 8
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: ca. 20-30 minutes
_______________________________________

INGREDIENTS:

Crust;
• 1 C. whole oats, ground to flour
• 10 medium dates, stone removed
• 1 1/2 tbsp cocoa
• 1 tbsp coconut oil
Dark Caramel;
• 4 tbsp butter, or vegan butter
• 1/4 cup regular cream or coconut cream
• 1 cup packed coconut sugar
• 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Truffle Fudge filling
• 7 oz. / 200 gr. chopped dark chocolate
• 1 C. regular cream or coconut cream
• 1/2 C. Agave syrup (or more to taste)
• 1 tsp. vanilla extract
Extra
• Flaky sea salt

INSTRUCTIONS:

For the crust, place the oats in a food processor and grind to flour then add in the dates, cocoa and coconut oil. Pulse until you have a finely ground sticky mass.
Line a 8″/ 20 cm tart tin with a removable bottom, with parchment paper.
Press the crust filling into the tart tin, pressing firmly to get a solid crust. Place in the freezer while you prepare the rest.
For the caramel, In a sauce pan with a thick bottom, melt the butter and let it cook until it browns slightly and starts to smell like hazelnuts. Carefully add the cream, sugar and vanilla and bring to a boil. Cook over medium heat until thickened. Remove from the heat.
Let the dark caramel cool for 15 minutes before spreading out over the crust. Return to the freezer.
For the Chocolate Truffle filling, Place chocolate in a glass bowl. In a saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer over medium-high heat. Add the agave syrup. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let sit for 5 minutes, then whisk until completely smooth. Taste for sweetness, add more agave syrup if you like it sweeter.
Pour the chocolate over the caramel and freeze for a final 30 minutes, until just chilled and set. OR refrigerate, covered, until ready to serve. Before serving, sprinkle the top with Fleur De Sel or other flaky sea salt.

Enjoy!
Myra XO

Po’ Boy Shrimp Burger with Creole Remoulade

Po’ Boy Shrimp Burger with Creole Remoulade

THE BEST WEEKEND FOOD EVER!!!

This juicy Hamburger is a combo of a Po’ boy Sandwich and a Burger, so basically the best of both worlds.

A Po’ boy is a traditional sandwich from Louisiana almost always made with some kind of meat or fried seafood, my version features shrimp and I serve them on my Brioche Hamburger Buns which have a tiny sweetness to them.


Also with a traditional Po Boy, you loose a shrimp at every bite, and it’s so annoying. So I have decided to turn the “Po’ Boy” into a burger. I mean it really makes sense to me. All the deliciousness of a Po’ Boy, but in a patty that holds together all the way until the last bite.
And as with all crazy good sandwiches, there’s the sauce. And what a sauce it is…an incredible Creole Remoulade that will blow your socks off. Good with anything from fish to steak, but incredible on this burger. The ingredient list may seem long but once you’ve tried it, you’ll make it time and time again.

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

Shrimp Burgers:
• 1 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
• 1 egg
• 2 tbsp. chopped cilantro
• 1 garlic clove, peeled and grated
• 1/2 red chili, de-seeded and chopped fine
• 1/2 cup Panko Bread Crumbs or Gluten Free Panko Crumbs
• 1 medium shallot, peeled and minced
• 1 tsp. Pink Himalayan Salt
• a few twists with the pepper mill
• 3 tbsp. Canola Oil

Cajun Remoulade:
• 1 cup mayonnaise (or vegan mayo)
• 1/3 c. Ketchup
• 1 tbsp. (Creole) Mustard
• 1 tbsp. Cajun or Creole Seasoning
• 1 tbsp. Prepared Horseradish
• 1 tbsp. sweet pickle juice
• 2 tbsp. finely chopped Dill Pickles
• 1-2 fresh green onions, finely chopped
• 1/2 teaspoon Tabasco Sauce
• 1/2 – 1 clove garlic, minced and grated
• 1 tsp. Worcestershire Sauce
• ½ teaspoon each sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

METHOD:
• Let’s start with the sauce…
• Just mix all the ingredients in a bowl and set aside so the flavours can develope.
• For the Burgers;
• Pat shrimp dry with kitchen paper towels and place in a food processor . Pulse once or twice so the shrimp is roughly chopped with still enough texture. Add the egg, chopped cilantro, garlic , chili, Panko breadcrumbs, shallot, sea salt and a few twists with the pepper mill.
• Pulse a few times but leave chunky.
• Form burgers and chill for 1 hour (covered).
• Heat oil in a heavy skillet.
• When very hot, fry the shrimp burgers until golden and crispy , about 3 minutes per side, depending on thickness. Drain on paper towels.
• To assemble, Spread bottom with remoulade, add some arugula or shredded cabbage and sliced onion, pickles and place a burger on top or two. Top with some more sauce. Put the top of the bun on and devour.

Enjoy!

Myra. XO



Rosemary Garlic Roast Chicken with Honey and Grapes

You really can’t beat a one skillet chicken dinner!

This seriously delicious chicken one pan dish is everything you want, juicy, tender, fall off the bone and crispy on the outside with a hearty finger licking gravy. Serve with lots of french baguette to mop up those juices.

Easy, healthy, comfort food. I mean, you can’t go wrong with Chicken.
I roast this chicken in my cast iron pan, because the crispiness and browning on the chicken is unsurpassable, and because the pan goes from the stove to the oven, which obviously is a major plus.

If you don’t have a cast iron pan don’t worry, any other frying pan will work too, but you will have to transfer the chicken to a baking dish when it goes into the oven.

I start by browning the chicken on the stove to get a nice browning on the chicken and to seal the meat, then I finish it off in the oven for another 20 minutes or so which gives you enough time to get your sides dishes ready and set the table.
It’s seasoned with thyme, rosemary and garlic, and then I added some honey and grapes to make it the perfect comfort dish. I also added a splash of white wine for the gravy. Which by the way is an amazing gravy, full of flavour.
I don’t pour gravy over the chicken because I want to keep the chicken crispy.


 Prep time : 15 minutes

 Cooking time : 20 – 30 minutes

 Serves : 4

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 1/4 Cup olive oil
  • 2 lbs. chicken, legs and  thighs (I used legs and boneless thighs)
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 Cup red seedless grapes
  • 2 sprigs Rosemary
  • 1 tbsp. fresh Thyme leafs
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp. Poultry seasoning
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 8 rashers smoked bacon or pancetta
  • flour for drenching plus 2 teaspoons for gravy
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1 large glass dry white wine

INSTRUCTIONS:

Pre heat oven to 190°C / 375° F

Take out a piece of parchment paper and lay it out on a board. This makes cleaning easier and seasoning too.

Place chicken pieces on top and season with salt pepper, poultry seasoning and paprika. Toss about by lifting the sides of the paper.

Add a few tablespoons of flour to the chicken and toss the chicken around again to coat all over.

Put a (cast iron) skillet on the heat. Add the olive oil when hot and start frying the chicken on both sides.

Meanwhile cut the bacon into small pieces and set aside. Peel the garlic and chop roughly.

When the chicken is browned, lower the heat and add the bacon, garlic and herbs to the pan. Stir around a bit to mix all the flavours and add the wine. Drizzle over the honey and add the grapes,   now transfer to the oven placing the baking dish on a rack in the middle of the oven and cook for 20 to 30 minutes until nice and crispy on top and cooked through.

Alternatively, if you don’t have a cast iron skillet, transfer to an oven safe dish that has been pre heated in the oven.

Serve with crusty bread.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

Healthy Salted Caramel Twix Bars

These home-made Twix Bars are a nutrient powerhouse!

Aside from being an easy, on the go snack, these nutrient powerhouses contain essential vitamins, minerals, protein and omega 3 fatty acids. Yes, they are super healthy and super delicious.  And they keep you full and satisfied for a long time.

The base of the twix is made with healthy oats, nuts and some maple syrup.

The caramel layer is made out of dates, some of the most impressive benefits of Medjool dates include their ability to lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, aid bone strength, protect cognition, boost metabolism, ensure proper hormone production, optimize digestion and help with normal growth and development.
Medjool dates also contain notable levels of magnesium, manganese, copper and calcium, all of which are required to improve bone mineral density in the body. Even if blood tests show that you are not deficient in minerals, this could be because your body is extracting minerals from your bones, especially women are prone to calcium deficiency so adding essential minerals in every snack is an important health decision.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s make some Twix!
________________________________________

🔪 Prep time : 15 minutes
⏰ Cooking time : 25 minutes
🍪 Makes : 16 Twix


INGREDIENTS:
BASE
• 1 cup cashew nuts, preferably soaked for a few hours
• 2 cups oats
• ½ Cup (pea) protein powder
• ¼ tsp. salt
• ¼ cup flax seeds
• ¼ cup coconut oil melted
• ¼ cup peanut butter,
• ½ cup maple syrup or agave syrup or a combo of both (I use 50/50)
CARAMEL
• 1 cup (heaped, well packed) pitted medjool dates
• ¼ tsp. instant coffee granules
• A few drops of natural caramel extract (optional)
• A few tablespoons of water
CHOCOLATE TOP
• ½ cup roughly chopped 80% dark chocolate
• 2 tsp. coconut oil
• Flaked sea salt

INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Pre heat the oven to 350° F / 180° C
2. Drain the cashew nuts and pat dry.
3. Place all the dry ingredients in a high powered food processor and process until fine.
4. Transfer to a bowl.
5. Place the cashew nuts in the food processor and blend until smooth.
6. Place the dry ingredients back into the food processor.
7. Heat the peanut butter, syrup and coconut oil briefly in the microwave until just softened. Add to the rest of the ingredients.
8. Mix everything well.
9. Line a square 8” / 20 cm. baking pan with parchment paper
10. Place all the base ingredients in the baking pan and press down firmly.
11. Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until golden on top and firm to the touch.
12. Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack in the pan.
Meanwhile make the caramel.
1. Place the dates in a sauce pan with a thick bottom to prevent burning and add the water.
2. Add the coffee granules
3. Cook slowly, stirring often to break down the dates completely. Add a little water if necessary.
4. This can take up to ten minutes depending on the dryness of the dates
5. Keep stirring until you have a thick paste. (that smells heavenly)
6. Add the caramel extract
7. Let cool completely.

When ready to assemble, spread the date caramel all over the cookie base, evenly.
Place in the refrigerator until firm and cooled. Or in the freezer if you are in a hurry
Melt the chocolate in 20 second intervals in the microwave until melted.
Spread evenly over the caramel and return to the fridge until set.
When you are ready to cut the Twix bars, make sure to immerse a sharp knife in hot water before cutting thru the chocolate or it will break unevenly. Cut into 16 squares.
Sprinkle over some flaked sea salt.
And I’m really wondering how long they will last in your home…..let me know, ok?

Enjoy!

Myra XO

Quick and Easy Pulled Pork Sandwiches

This is a super easy, no fail slow cooker recipe, put together in an instant.

Pulled Pork is one of my favourites to make and eat, since it’s packed with flavour and made with minimal effort. The Pork comes out very tender and juicy and stuffed into a sandwich,  it’s scrumptious .

Once you’ve placed the ingredients in your slow cooker, you can pretty much forget about it until you’re ready to eat.

This is also great for crowds and parties since you can leave the finished pulled Pork in the slow cooker on the “keep warm” setting for at least an other two hours.

Alternatively, you can freeze half and eat the the remainder some other day. It will keep in the freezer for about two months.

⏰ Prep time : 15 minutes
🍴 Cooking time : 4 hours.
🍝 Serves : 6 – 8

INGREDIENTS:

1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoons chili powder
3 tbsp smoked paprika
2 to 3 sprigs thyme, leaves only
2 cloves garlic, peeled and grated
2 teaspoons salt
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 tbsp olive oil
3 1/2 – 4 lbs. boneless pork shoulder, trimmed of excess fat
___________
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup barbecue sauce

INSTRUCTIONS:

• In small bowl, mix brown sugar, chili powder, paprika, thyme, garlic, salt, cayenne, ground pepper and olive oil to form a paste.
Rub mixture all over pork.
• Marinate for a few hours if you have the time, it will taste great either way.
• Place in slow cooker.
• Pour broth and 1/4 cup of the vinegar over pork. Cover and cook on High heat setting 3 hours.
• Add a little water if the sauce evaporates to quickly.
• Add the Bbq sauce and cook for about an other hour until completely tender. Check by pulling away some meat with a fork.
• Remove pork to cutting board, and shred using 2 forks. Return to slow cooker and cook on low heat setting for about 20 minutes or until warmed.
• To serve, split buns open, and scoop out s big ladle of pulled pork with sauce onto the bun, top with pickles and/or coleslaw and cover with top halves of buns, eat immediately.
• Have plenty of napkins ready!

Enjoy!
Myra XO

Vanilla Layer Cake with fresh Strawberries and white chocolate whipped cream cheese frosting.

Vanilla Layer Cake with fresh Strawberries and white chocolate whipped cream cheese frosting.

Having a good homemade vanilla cake recipe in your repertoire will make life a lot easier for you. This particular cake is easy, light and full of vanilla flavor, so delicious and tender…and it’s pretty much the best vanilla cake recipe you’ll ever make!

So why not surprise your loved one this Valentine’s Day with this delicious vanilla cake with fresh strawberries and the most fluffy white chocolate cheesecake filling you have ever tasted?
Having a good vanilla cake recipe is wonderful since you can always adapt the frosting or buttercream to adjust to your taste or mood. Making a cake from scratch is also very rewarding, just follow the steps in the recipe and before you know it… you’ve got yourself a home-made cake!
This cake is actually fairly easy to make and has the most incredible vanilla flavour, the secret to success is having all the ingredients at room temperature. Then letting the cake cool in the tin after baking, these are important steps.
The cake can also be made one day in advance and in fact I encourage you to do so, since that makes frosting even easier and there is less pressure for you.

The frosting is pure heaven, like white chocolate cheese cake but softer and spreadable.

vanilla cake, strawberries white chocolate

INGREDIENTS:


Cake:
2 ¾ cups / 350 gr. all purpose flour* (see note)
¼ cup / 35 gr. corn starch
2 tsp./ 10 gr baking powder
1 tsp./ 5 gr baking soda
½ tsp. / 2.5 gr. salt
1 cup / 225 gr. butter at room temperature
1 ½ / 300 gr. cups sugar
4 eggs at room temperature
3 tsp./ 15 ml. vanilla extract
1 cup / 225 ml. full fat (Greek) yoghurt
½ cup / 120 ml. milk of choice
½ cup / 110 gr. good quality strawberry jam
2 cups / 400 gr. fresh strawberries

White chocolate whipped cream cheese frosting:
4 oz. / 112 gr. white chocolate, chopped
1 ¾ cup / 420 gr. cream cheese at room temperature
1 ¾ cup / 420 ml. whipping cream
¼ cup / 30 gr. powdered sugar
2 tsp. / 10 ml. vanilla extract
1 tsp. / 5 gr. gelatin powder

 

vanilla cake, strawberries white chocolate

vanilla cake, strawberries white chocolate

INSTRUCTIONS:

For the cake:

Pre heat the oven to 175 C / 350 F.
Grease two 8”/20cm round baking tins, line them with parchment paper and grease lightly with some butter or oil.
Cream the butter and sugar together in a stand mixer until completely soft and fluffy.
Add the eggs one at a time, beating until each egg is fully incorporated.
In another bowl combine all the dry ingredients.
Mix the yogurt with the milk in a jug.
Now set your mixer to the lowest speed and alternate adding flour and yoghurt mixture to the bowl with the butter and eggs, stirring after each addition. End with flour, stir to combine but try not to over-mix.
Divide the batter between the pans and place in the middle of the oven on a rack.
Bake for about 40 to 45 min or until a toothpick pierced in the center of the cake comes out clean and dry.
Remove from oven and leave to cool on a rack for at least 15 minutes  before removing the cakes from the baking tin.
Cool the cakes completely before frosting.

If you do make the cake a day in advance, leave them in the tins and cover very well with foil when completely cooled and place in a cool place or in your fridge overnight. Leaving the cake overnight in fridge makes frosting so much easier, this is a tip I actually got in baking school. 

For the white chocolate whipped cream cheese frosting;
Melt the white chocolate in the microwave, for 20 seconds at a time, stirring each time in between. I do this on the defrost setting of my microwave which is about 450 watt, white chocolate burns faster than regular chocolate so you have to be careful.
Meanwhile beat the cream cheese until completely smooth and soft in your mixer.
Start adding the whipping cream in a slow stream with the mixer running on a low setting. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla and gelatin. Turn th speed to medium high and whip for about 4 to 5 minutes until nice and fluffy.

To assemble the cakes, cut each layer in half, spread three layers with strawberry jam, then about half a cup of frosting,  spread out carefully over the jam. Place another layer of cake on top and repeat. The top layer only has frosting and no jam.
Carefully spread more frosting all around the cake for a naked cake look.
Decorate with more strawberries and flowers on the top and around the cake.

Enjoy !
Myra XO

Broccoli Pizza Crust

Cutting down on carbs doesn’t mean cutting down on flavour or delicious food. Yes, you can have it all. This Broccoli based pizza is proof!
It’s actually pure heaven, full of cheesy goodness and you’re eating a lot of veggies at the same time.
This Broccoli Pizza base is very easy to make and will satisfy all your Pizza cravings.

Makes 1 large base or two small ones

INGREDIENTS:

Broccoli Crust:

• 1 small head of broccoli cut into florets (about 2-3 cups riced)
• 2 eggs
• ¼ cup parmesan cheese
• ¼ cup mozzarella cheese
• Salt and pepper
• ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning

Toppings:

• ¼ cup pizza sauce
• 4 ounces mozzarella — sliced or shredded
• Pizza toppings of choice, onion, tuna, ham, salami etc…

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat the oven to 200 C / 400 F degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat, do not skip this step or your crust will stick to the pan.
Place half of the broccoli florets in a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse in 5-second bursts until the broccoli is in fine crumbs, place in a large microwave safe bowl. Repeat with the remaining broccoli florets.
Cover the bowl (I cover with a plate) and microwave on high for 2 minutes or until it is steamed. Remove plate and let cool for two minutes then pour broccoli onto a clean kitchen towel and squeeze out as much liquid as you can until you are left with dry rice.


In a large bowl, combine the broccoli rice, eggs, cheeses, and seasoning with a spoon until fully combined. Pour mixture onto the pre-lined baking sheet and shape into a pizza crust, about 1/2 inch thick.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until crust is lightly browned. Remove from the oven and add the pizza sauce and cheese. At this point feel free to add desired toppings (veggies or meat). Return to the oven and bake for an additional 10-12 minutes or until the cheese is fully melted. Let sit for a few minutes before cutting. Sprinkle with some fresh Basil.

Enjoy!

Myra XO