Saturday, 21 March 2015

Thermomix Za'atar Flatbreads Recipe

Thermomix Za'atar Flatbreads Recipe
Back in December 2014 I had the chance to organise and attend a cooking Christmas party at the fantastic Cambridge Cookery School, the chosen theme was Middle Eastern and Sook food. Ever since then I've been wanting to adapt these Za'atar Flat Breads to the Thermomix as it is quite a wet dough and, let's just face it, the Thermomix makes light work of kneading.

Za'atar is a condiment made of dried oregano mixed with sesame seeds, dried sumac and salt along with other herbs and spices. I used Waitrose's own label which also contains dried marjoram. I had never tried it and I have to say it's beautiful. Try it sprinkled on salads too. If you can't find any Za'atar, let's see if we can find a good way of making a homemade one and, for now, you can make these and use your favourite salt as topping.

A little birdie from my group (thank you Suellen) tells me that in Lebanese cuisine these flatbreads are called Manousheh.

It’s especially good with Kirrin’s Kitchen’s Thermomix Sweet Potato Hummus.

Don’t worry if you have any flat breads left over, they toast well on a low setting in the toaster and are delicious.

If you live in the UK with your Thermie or thinking of buying one, do not forget to come join my Facebook group, Thermomix Owners UK, for daily inspiration and chat.

Friday, 6 March 2015

Thermomix Japanese Cotton Cheesecake

Thermomix Japanese Cotton CheesecakeThere has been a lot of talk about Thermomix Japanese Cotton Cheesecake in my Thermomix Owners UK Facebook group ever since Patricia posted a photo of hers (which she got from the Webos Fritos blog).

I absolutely adore this cake, it is not a cheesecake per se, the cotton part refers to it's amazing soft touch and texture. It is very hit and miss with people though, the little Tapita (now 4 and a half, yikes!) and my husband didn't like it but a couple of the school run mums loved it.

Now, before starting to cook I generally like to lay out all the ingredients in bowls. It keeps me sane and it means that (when distracted by a child, email or door bell) I always can remember what has already gone in and what hasn't by looking at what is missing. This is one of those recipes where having all ingredients laid out comes in handy and makes it much faster.

If you're in the UK with your Thermie make sure you come join me at the coolest Facebook group, Thermomix Owners UK. We are a bit random, a bit thermogeeky, a tad gadget obsessed but, most of all, we are a fun, supportive, independent Thermomix group.

Before scrolling down to the recipe, let me give you a hint of what's coming up on the blog soon.

Sunday, 28 December 2014

Thermomix Roscón de Reyes / Roscón de Pascua (Spanish Christmas or Easter cake)

Thermomix Roscón de Reyes / Roscón de PascuaAt this time of year I am always asked the same question: do you know a good recipe for Roscón de Reyes? And unfortunately I don't, I am not very good at baking (at eating cake I am brilliant though). So, this year I have enrolled the help of the lovely Beatriz from Sabor de Amor who makes a fantastic roscón. Roscón is traditionally eaten for Epiphany (the Twelfth Night, the night of January 5th), when the Three Kings (Three Wise Men) visit all the Spanish children atop their camels all the way from the Orient after parading on their floats at many different cabalgatas. Without the cream, it's also typical of Easter where I am from, so you have two excuses a year to make it and the rest of the  year to perfect it!

A bit like brioche, sweet bread or even panettone, where I come from (Galicia), you can basically eat roscón all year round. So, feel free to take the Galician approach and don't wait to January 6th. Otherwise, your other perfect excuse is Easter time. Traditionally at Easter godparents give their godchildren a Roscón de Pascua, I used to get one every year. Delicious tradition if you ask me!

Based in Wrexham, Wales, Bea is a brilliant member of my Facebook group (Thermomix Owners UK) and has a business selling Spanish food (some of it made by Bea herself!) at very affordable prices (I do keep an eye out for these things). She is very proactive when it comes to getting any obscure ingredients and tools that arent' so easy to find over here (check out her Churros kit!). As a thank you for allowing me to share the recipe, I am leaving links to her Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts so that you can follow her.


Monday, 22 December 2014

Thermomix Bica (typical cake from Galicia, Spain)

Thermomix Bica (typical cake from Galicia, Spain)I come from a lovely part of Spain called Galicia, full of sandy beaches and good food. Bica (pronounced bee-ka) is typical of this area and delicious dipped in coffee, which is why many coffee shops will bring you a bite (free!) if you order a coffee in the afternoon. Yes, you read right, free! Call it sweet tapas.

When my family gets together my cousin tends to make it (in her Thermomix), a couple of years ago she gave me the recipe then I promptly forgot until a few months ago. This makes a lot so you can make two cakes. I took some to my little Tapita's school teachers and shared with the school mums and still had some left at home. Everyone loved it, it got really good reviews as it's so light and airy but a little bit goes a long way.

My tip: try it dip in red wine or Port for a treat. Yes, it's the done thing!

If you are in the UK with your Thermomix, don't forget I run the Facebook group Thermomix Owners UK. A fabulous community full of fabulous people, keep an eye out on the blog to know why!

This recipe is designed for the TM31, which means it should work well in the TM5. Ready?

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Thermomix Porcini Croquetas

Thermomix Porcini croquetas
Croquetas are a very typical Spanish dish. Delicious creamy béchamel bites breadcrumbed and fried. One of those seemingly simple but rather fiddly dishes that the Thermomix and a piping bag make a breeze. The mixture needs to rest in the fridge so it's best to prepare it the day before.

These are perfect tapas, perfect picnic fare, perfect with a salad for dinner, perfect for an office lunch… the possibilities are endless.

Thank you to Eva from Catalan Kilt for putting me on to the idea of using porcini and referring me to this Spanish recipe for inspiration.

Thermomix Porcini Croquetas
Makes approx. 30, depending on the size


For the mixture:

- 15 g dried porcini mushrooms

- 150 g unsalted butter, roughly cubed
- 30 g onion

- 200 g plain or spelt flour (I used spelt)

- 800 g whole milk, take out of the fridge about an hour earlier if chilled
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- Black pepper, freshly milled
- Salt (I use Maldon sea salt), to taste but start with about a teaspoon or less

- A couple of disposable piping bags (or freezer bags)

For bread crumbing and frying:

- 2-3 eggs
- Breadcrumbs (if you ever have left over bread, always make breadcrumbs in your Thermomix and freeze them, you can use them from frozen)
- Olive oil (being Spanish this would be the traditional oil to use but you choose)

How to make the croqueta mixture:

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Thermomix Lentejas, Spanish Lentil Stew

Thermomix Lentejas, Spanish Lentil StewThere are dishes that just take you back to your childhood, this is one of them, probably for any Spaniard. Lentejas are a classic of any Spanish household, it's a Spanish Lentil Stew with, of course, chorizo (you wouldn't expect any less from this blog, would you?).

Pronounced LEHN-TEH-HASS, you can totally make it vegetarian/vegan, just leave out the chorizo and you're done. Do add the paprika though as it will add to the flavour.

This is a humble dish, "un plato de cuchara" (a dish to be eaten with a spoon). Now that the Autumn has hit the UK this is perfect fare and, as you can see, it's not all that unhealthy!

Pardina lentils can be found in the UK, I noticed them in the Spanish shop La Plaza (Notting Hill) and if you do a quick search online you will find them too. But you can substitute with green lentils.

Find this recipe on The Thermomix Recipe Vault too, a fantastic collection of Thermomix recipes by bloggers from all over the world.

Lentejas / Spanish lentil stew with chorizo
Serves 4 (can be made bigger)


Sunday, 28 September 2014

Ox Pasture Hall Hotel Review - Scarborough

September 2014 has quite literally been a pain: chickenpox, the start of school, the adaptation to said school, unexpected garden works and illness (mine, not pretty!) but it actually started really well, with a visit to Ox Pasture Hall Hotel for a review.

The place is rather photogenic so expect a photo-heavy post, ready?

Ox Pasture Hall Hotel is located just outside Scarborough, in an idyllic spot in the North Yorkshire countryside. When the view from the hotel's car park looks like this:

Ox Pasture Hall Hotel Review - Scarborough's no surprise that, when you turn round you find a quintessentially British place like this one:

Ox Pasture Hall Hotel Review - Scarborough

In fact, I say quintessentially British but it really reminded me of the place where I spent my childhood, Galicia, and in fact a lot of an old house my family still has in a little village in that region of Spain. I digress, back to the Ox Pasture Hall review. This now 4* hotel used to be a farm house, Ox Pasture Farm, home to the Asquith family who farmed the land from April 1918-19 until it was sold in 1961. The hotel formed part of the Best Western hotel chain until a few years ago when the owner decided to run it his own way and I have to say that, after talking to the manager (Alan), about the investment and the fairness of the owner, it sounds to me like leaving Best Western was absolutely the right decision. I discovered during my chat with Alan that it was the owner himself who had been emailing me, talk about taking charge!
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