Saturday, 22 July 2017

Barney Banana Icy Poles

I don't know about you, but, I love the old Barney Banana Icy Poles from my childhood.  They were fantastic and unlike others they were made with REAL bananas not flavouring.  These went down a treat with the Crash Test Dummies, they finished this batch and I missed the photo op of the finished product.  * I finally got a picture of the finished product and how appropriate that Stewie looks like he's about to eat it!

They are quick and easy to make and if you do them last thing at night while they kids are asleep and then surprise them the next day with a treat!  Or hide them for yourself 😍

These are my $1.50 yes you read that correctly! Ice Pole moulds I got from Kmart.

2 large bananas, pureed
400 ml cream, lightly whipped
1 tablespoon caster sugar

Puree the bananas with your stick blender.

Lightly whip the cream and sugar with your stick blender you still want it to be pouring consistency.

Mix the cream and banana together.

Pour into your moulds.

Stick in the sticks.  Freeze overnight or for 6 hours.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Homemade Ricotta

I have always wanted to make my own Ricotta and, as you do, thought it was difficult and would be time consuming.  Well I made this and well it only took me 20 minutes, including cleanup.

This is so easy and much cheaper than buying it.  I found I could make this of an evening while cooking dinner, leave it to drain and just before bed put it in the fridge for use the next day!

Much nicer than bought Ricotta which has been sitting there for ages.

You can keep this in the fridge in an airtight plastic container or jar for up to 2 weeks.

2 ltrs whole milk
1/2 cup cream
3 tablespoons lemon juice

Heat your milk and cream to a rolling boil, don't let it boil over.

Add the lemon juice and stir until it looks curdled.  Normally you avoid this stage, here you are looking for it.

Line a sieve with muslin (cheese cloth) or paper towel over a bowl.  Gently pour the curdled milk through, you may need to tip some of the whey out of the bowl below if it fills too quickly.  Allow to drain and cool to room temp before placing in a plastic airtight container or jar.

Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Chocolate Panna Cotta

I love panna cotta it can be made in so many flavours and is a great way of using up things out of the fridge and store cupboard, or, just for a cheeky dessert at the end of the weekend.

This post will give you the recipe for both chocolate and white chocolate panna cotta.  I always serve with fruit or a fruit sauce as panna cotta is very rich.  The chocolate is shown with poached plums and the white chocolate is a simple cherry puree.

500 ml cream
100 ml plain yogurt
2 sheets gelatin or 5 gm gelatin powder
1/2 cup dark chocolate, chopped or chips and 1/4 cup caster sugar
1 cup white chocolate, chopped or chips (no sugar with the white it has enough)

Heat cream until just slightly bubbling around the edges of the pan.

Add in your chocolate chips and sugar if needed, stir until melted and combined.  Add in the soaked gelatin, stir until melted.

Transfer to a jug for ease of pouring and add the yogurt.  Stir until combined.

Pour into serving glasses or dariole moulds and refrigerate for 6 hours.

When ready if using dariole moulds dip in hot water to loosen the panna cotta, turn onto serving dish and add fruit.

Saturday, 1 July 2017

French Onion Soup

French onion soup is a great starter for a winters meal or a light lunch.  This, even though I have made a lighter version than normal is a very rich soup.  Add a nice toasty, cheesy crouton to the top or in fact two of them!

1 kg onions, I used half red half brown.
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup brandy, optional
1 cup white wine,
3 cups chicken stock
3 springs thyme, fresh
2 rashes bacon
salt and pepper to taste

Slice your onions.

In a tablespoon of butter and same of oil gently saute your thyme and onions until softened, after 10 minutes add the garlic, gently cook for another 20 minutes until the onions are soft and golden.

Add the bacon, rinds and all and cook off for 5 minutes.

Add the brandy and if your game, set it alight,  cook for a minute then add the wine.  Simmer for 5 minutes then add the chicken stock.  Bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer and cook for approx 40 minutes.  When ready to serve remove the bacon.  At this stage you can strip the meat off the bacon and chop finely and add back to the soup, or discard.

When ready toast some slices of bread stick and top with tasty cheese of choice, grill until melted and bubbly.

Serve with toasted crouton and enjoy a nice glass of wine and a family chat.