Sunday, 27 July 2014

{soya bean drink in hermie ... asian style}

I was always the soya bean drink person and my sister was the opposite with her choice being a chrysanthemum tea or the like. This was of course when my mum did the weekly grocery shop at the Asian Grocer and we asked for a yeos 'fruit box' of choice for the ride home. When you're that young, try explaining the difference in the Asian style soya bean drink and commercial western soy milk to your friends! They are very different and one mistaking the other can lead to an accidental dislike for something that is so yummy.

So, at attempt #5, I am finally able to say that I think I have mastered the making of an Asian style soya bean drink. This leads to so many things. Not only can I determine the sweetness of the drink, but if minimal or no sugar is added, using a few extra steps, we can then make tofu and also tau foo fa (the sweet Asian dessert that is soo silky and smooth). These will be hopefully my next successes but first, I'm just enjoying the yummy drink that I hope to make over and over again. Enjoy!

130 grams soya beans
water for soaking beans
60-90 grams sugar
600 grams water
400-500 grams hot water
nut bag for straining

1. Place soya beans into TM bowl. Soak for at least 6 hours or overnight if possible. If for 6 hours, I use hot water. Water must cover the beans.
2. Using the TM steaming basket, strain the excess water from the soaked beans.
3. Add 600 grams water into TM bowl. Blend 20secs/ speed 9. Scrape down sides and then add sugar (I use the whole 90 grams).
4. Cook 25mins/ varoma/ speed 3. You will find that the liquid bubbles up to the MC hole. When this occurs, decrease the temperature to 100C (by pressing the 100C button) for the remainder of the cooking time.
5. Add the remaining 400-500grams hot water and mix 3secs/ speed 3.
6. Using an extra bowl that is about 1.5L in capacity, place the nutbag over and then pour the soya bean liquid into the bag to strain. You can see after I have done this, my bag is just strung up over the bowl so it can continue to drip out.

7. If you are using a very fine material like a nutbag, feel free to squeeze out the liquid for maximum effectiveness. If your bag is not very fine, I don't recommend doing this as you will get the pulp pushed through which is not very nice to drink!
8. Taste for sweetness and adjust if required. 

Makes ~1-1.2L

Bon Appetit xx

Tips: the nutbag that I use has been so useful and easy to clean compared to a muslin cloth. A quick rinse and all the pulp is gone. I bought this one at a health food store.

Sunday, 13 July 2014

{everyday spaghetti bolognese in hermie}

There is not one person who I know that does not like spaghetti bolognese. Everyone has their own take on it but one thing that remains constant is that it is a regular in most households. It's a great combination of pasta, vegetables and meat. So, when serving it up to your family, you know they are eating a hearty, healthy, tasty meal especially when it comes to feeding the fussiest of toddlers!

It is also very versatile; the following recipe doubles as the sauce if you're going to make a lasagne (in Hermie) and when you make the full amount, there's enough for a family lasagne and a serve of bolognese as is. Who doesn't like 2 meals for the effort of 1? Enjoy xx

1 carrot (~120 grams), roughly chopped
1 zucchini, roughly chopped
1 brown onion, peeled & halved
3 garlic cloves, peeled
1 celery stick, roughly chopped (optional)
50 grams olive oil
500 grams beef mince, slightly frozen in 4cm pieces
5 medium size mushrooms, sliced
3 dried bay leaves
1 tablespoon TM vegetable stock concentrate (from the EDC)
salt to taste
50 grams tomato paste
800 grams chopped tomatoes (1 large tin)

1. Place carrot, zucchini, onion, garlic (& celery) into TM bowl and chop 3secs/ speed5. I find this still provides texture and the vegetables are not too fine. Scrape down sides of bowl.
2. Add olive oil and cook 5mins/ varoma/ reverse/ speed1. Scrape down sides of bowl.
3. Add mince to TM bowl. Cook 5mins/ varoma/ reverse/ speed1. Scrape down sides.
4. If using mushrooms, add them to the TM bowl. Also add bay leaves, TM stock, salt, tomato paste, and tomatoes to TM bowl. This will bring the contents near the 'max' mark on the bowl. Give the sauce a quick manual stir with the spatula and cook 15mins/ 100C/ reverse/ stir speed.
5. Check the sauce and manually stir through again. Cook for a further 25mins/ 90C/ reverse/ stir speed.
6. Serve with pasta and grated parmesan cheese.

Makes ~1.6L of sauce

Bon Appetit xx

Notes: slightly frozen mince is used as it takes longer to break down and therefore, the bolognese sauce still has the texture to it when fully cooked.

Monday, 9 June 2014

{lemon tart or tart au citron in hermie}

Last week I was supposed to go to mum's for a family dinner with my sisters. When it's a big gathering I love to offer to make dessert because it's a chance to make something different. I was going to make a lemon tart. However, I fell sick with the flu and never made it past buying the ingredients.

That being said, we had some lovely friends over for dinner this weekend and because I had the ingredients on hand, I gave the lemon tart another chance. Also, it happens to be one of Mr S's favourites and in his words "it's satisfying with just one big piece and I don't have to keep having more". These are big words for someone who doesn't normally eat sweet treats!

This tart is tangy and refreshing. I love the fact it uses the lemon juice as well as the zest and it is actually very easy to make. When you go to a cafe or restaurant next time, you'll look at the lemon tart in a different way because you'll think how expensive a slice of dessert is when it is sooo easy to make with basic pantry ingredients. On that note, Enjoy!

Sweet Short Crust Pastry
340 grams plain flour
pinch of salt
150 grams unsalted butter, cut into 2cm cubes
90 grams caster sugar (or icing sugar)
2 eggs

1. Place flour, salt & butter into TM bowl. Mix 5secs/ speed 5 until mixed together and it resembles a bread crumb like mixture.
2. Add sugar and mix 3secs/ speed 5.
3. Add eggs and mix 3secs/ speed 5. Then, knead 30sec/ closed lid position/ knead button.
4. 'Pour' mixture out onto baking paper or ThermoMat and bring together to form a ball. Wrap in glad wrap and put into the fridge for about 1hr to rest. Have a rest and a cup of tea :-)
5. Pre-heat oven to 190C and roll out pastry to line a 23cm round fluted tart tin. I find rolling the pastry out between 2 pieces of baking paper the easiest. Trim the edges and rest in the fridge for another 10mins.

Lemon Filling
Zest of 3 lemons
4 eggs
2 egg yolks
250 grams caster sugar
200 grams thick cream
200 grams lemon juice

1. Place lemon zest in TM bowl. Zest for 20secs/ speed 10. Scrape down sides of bowl and zest another 10 secs if required. Set aside for later.
2. Put eggs, egg yolks and sugar into TM bowl. Mix 5secs/ speed 5
3. Add cream, lemon juice and zest to TM bowl and mix a further 5secs/ speed 5.

Putting it together
1. Line the pastry shell with a piece of baking paper and blind bake using baking beads/rice/cous cous for 10 mins. Remove the beads and bake for a further 5 mins.
2. Reduce temperature to 150C and pour lemon filling into tart pan (there may be some left over) and bake for 35-40mins until filling is set.
3. Rest and cool before serving. Serve as is or with double thickened cream.

Serves 8-10

Bon Appetit xx

Tips: With the offcuts of pastry and extra lemon filling, I make a small extra tart just for Mr S :-)

Friday, 16 May 2014

{chorizo & chicken risotto in Hermie}

I have been doing Thermomix demonstrations for a number of months now and it has come that time in a Consultants life when your existing customers are sometimes coming back for more. What I mean, is that there might be a special offer for current owners so that they want to host another demonstration. And, although the demo menu is extensive, there is only so much Mushroom Risotto that people want to see. 

So, here is an alternative that I offer for such customers. It is a tweak on the Mushroom Risotto and has such a different flavour. Great for those that really enjoy a bit of meat in their meals and not a big dent in the weekly budget.

It is a real winner in my house and one of the dishes that Miss A (the fussy eater) approves of. She will eat it everytime I make it so I'm happy with that. Miss I loves it because she's not a fan of mushrooms and this has lots of flavour for her mature (4.5yr old) palette! Enjoy xx

100 grams parmesan cheese (block), cut into 2cm cubes
1 brown onion, peeled & halved
60 grams olive oil (or 30grams + 30grams butter)
1 chorizo sausage, skin removed, halved lengthways & sliced into small pieces
320 grams italian arborio rice
100 grams white wine
1 tablespoon TM vegetable stock concentrate
320-350 grams chicken thigh, cut into 3cm pieces (~ 4 small thighs)
720 grams water
100-200 grams baby spinach /rocket leaves

1. Place cheese into TM bowl and grate 20secs/ speed9. Set aside for later.
2. Rinse out bowl to ensure the cooking of the risotto does not burn later.
3. Place onion into TM bowl and chop 3secs/ speed 6. Scrape down sides of bowl.
4. Add oil and saute 3mins/ varoma/ reverse/ speed 1.
5. Meanwhile, prepare chorizo.
6. Scrape down sides of bowl and give the bottom of the TM bowl a stir to ensure no food is sticking to the bottom. Add chorizo to TM bowl and saute 2mins/ varoma/ reverse/ speed 1. Scrape down sides of bowl.
7. Add rice and manually stir through rest of the food. Saute 3mins/ varoma/ reverse/ speed 1. At the 1.5min mark, pour in wine (through the hole in the lid) and continue sautéing.
8. Add in stock concentrate, chicken & water. Note, you'll be very close to the 'max' mark in the TM bowl. Cook 15mins/ 100C/ reverse/ speed1.
9. While this is cooking, place spinach or rocket leaves into bottom of ThermoServer.
10. When risotto has finished cooking, pour into ThermoServer and sprinkle over some reserved parmesan. Rest for a further 5 mins.
11. Stir the risotto so that the leaves are throughout and serve piping hot with extra parmesan sprinkled on top.

Bon Appetit xx

Tip: I like to skin the chorizo sausage as I find it does not 'catch' on the blades. It is not 100% necessary but I think it makes for a better result.