Wednesday, 22 September 2010

North African Tabouleh

Very common in France, but much more difficult to find in the UK, a tabouleh is a (cold) fresh and summery salad with a base of couscous. Very easy to make, it has very fresh minty notes and can be easily taken to a party or a picnic.
In the middle east, boulghour is used instead of couscous grain.

You will need for 4:
- 300g couscous
- The same volume of boiling water as that of couscous grain.
- 4 tomatoes cut in dice
- 1 diced white onion
- 1 bunch of parsley chopped finely
- 1 bunch of mint chopped finely
- the juice of a lemon
- 10cl oil
- salt, pepper.

Mix the couscous grain with the oil, salt, then add the boiling water, and set aside for 1/2h.
Then add the other ingredients, then leave in the fridge for a while.

Serve cool.

Easy no?
North African cuisine is completely integrated in French cuisine and kitchens, and you will find the dishes cooked in French homes as well as in restaurants everywhere. It is a very fragrant, fresh and full of flavours.

Enjoy the tabouleh whilst the good weather lasts!

Source: Photography, me , and recipe, the one I tend to make.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Self-saucing chocolate cake

Self saucing chocolate cake

You know how chocolate cakes can be same-same...

Well, I found a very original one, in my favorite cake book: 'Cakes Bakes and desserts triple tested by Australian Women's Weekly'. They generally have recipes you can be confident about, but this one in particular is absolutely brilliant, it contains absolut gems...

Dieters abstain, of course!

It's one of these I had not made yet, and I was wondering about the result, slighly sceptical I suppose.
I reduced the sugar content as I am not a sweet tooth and also to make the dessert easier to remember, and I increased the cocoa coontent:

-60g butter
-125ml milk
-vanilla extract
-5 tblspoon 100% cocoa powder
-5 tblspoon 100% cocoa powder extra
-150g caster sugar
-150g self raising flour
-150g brown sugar
- 500ml boiling water

Grease a small oven dish, and preheat the oven if necessary at 180 degrees.
Melt the butter with the milk in a medium milk pan,
Remove from the heat and mix in the caster sugar and the vanilla extract,
Then add the sifted flour and cocoa.
Pour the mix in the oven dish.
Sift the brown sugar and extra cocoa pwder over the mix.
Pour very gently (you can use a turned up spoon to make the pouring more so) the boiling water over the cake - yes I know this part is weird!
Then cook in the middle of the onen at 180 degrees C for 40 minutes.

Wait 10 min approximately before serving (you don't want to burn your guests'tastebuds, do you?).

Self saucing chocolate cake

I am very pleased with this cake. Apart fromn being a brilliant party trick to finish a meal, it is a doodle to make, and takes no time. I was very impressed with the self saucing effect, and the sauce comes out tasting similar to the french chocolate pots from my youth.

So a big thumbs up for that one, and especially to my favorite book. I have no commission on it, but I do highly recomment getting it :)

Source: recipe, Australian Women's Weekly, Photography, myself.

Self saucing chocolate cake