This is another recipe from Jane Lawson’s book "Cocina Nueva". ( Now also in paperback).
It reminds me of a Charlie Trotter dessert with melon soup with mousse and fruit, but is much simpler to complete and the taste and appearance are superb.
It is a great combination of flavours and such a refreshing finish to a meal.
Certainly this one can be done in any food processor, but you can use yoghurt that you made in the Thermomix to further impress your guests.
Strawberry Gazpacho with frozen yoghurt
40 g sugar
375 g thick yoghurt (Greek or sheep’s milk)
2 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
30 g sugar
750 g very ripe, sweet strawberries, hulled
1 tsp vinegar (preferably sherry or balsamic)
2 Tbsp olrosso sherry (optional)
Fruit such as kiwi fruit, melons, strawberries, grapes, peaches, cut into dice
1 Tbsp mint leaves, finely shredded
Line a 20 cm square shallow dish (or similar) with two sheets of plastic wrap long enough that they will be able to be folded over to cover the top of the mixture once filled.
Place the sugar in the TM bowl and grind for 15 seconds on speed 9. Add the other ingredients and mix for 10 seconds on speed 3. Pour into the lined tray, smooth out and then cover with the overhanging plastic wrap and place in the freezer for 4 hours or until set.
Place the sugar in the TM bowl and grind for 15 seconds on speed 9. Add the other ingredients and mix for 30 seconds on speed 9. Strain through a fine sieve and chill for 2 – 3 hours.
Divide the strawberry purée between 4 shallow bowls. Place fruit garnish onto purée and cut the frozen yoghurt into 1.5cm cubes or diamond shapes and place around fruit. Sprinkle mint over the top.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Friday, January 15, 2010
Once I had made junket the next simple step was to make fromage frais by gently cutting the junket into chunks and allowing it to drain through muslin.
In 1996 I was fortunate to be at a class at Sunnybrae Restaurant given by Richard Thomas on cheese. Richard put on an amazing array of cheeses to try and demonstrated making fresh curd cheeses. At that time he was at Yarra Valley Dairies and had created the now popular Persian Fetta. More recently he is down the road at De Bortoli producing butter and maturing and selling cheese.
He has held offal dinners at the grand view Hotel in Brunswick West with Alain Kerambrun over the last year and the dessert at one of those dinners was Coeur à la crème.
The idea was to make a Coeur à la crème as I had seen Gabriel Gaté do on Taste of the Tour. It is a traditional dish from his native region, but not in those cookbooks of his that I own, so a bit of searching. There was an article and recipe in Australian Gourmet Traveller, and the reference to Elizabeth David’s book, “French Provincial Cooking” led me to why I had been having troubles sourcing a recipe in my French books. The dessert is often referred to as crémet d’Angers.
I found a recipe in Jane Grigson’s “Good Things” where she buys into the pasteurised milk for cheese debate... “And it’s no good making your own in a muslin drip bag, from our pasteurised milk; the result is rubbery. If you can buy unpasteurised milk, it’s another matter.” Grigson goes on to say that the white ceramic hearts used to make the dessert can be purchased from Elizabeth David’s shop and make a good summer birthday present.
Coeur à la crème
2 egg whites
Pinch of cream of tartar
90 g caster sugar
300 ml whipping cream
200g fromage frais
1 Tbsp kirsch
Place the egg whites and cream of tartar in a very clean TM bowl fitted with the butterfly. Beat for 3 minutes at 50°C on speed 4 until stiff. Remove to a bowl and set aside. Remove the butterfly.
Place the sugar into the TM bowl and grind for 30 seconds on speed 9. Scrape down the sides after 10 seconds. Replace the butterfly and add the cream. Whip for 40 seconds on speed 3.
Add the fromage frais and mix for 10 seconds on speed 3. Finally add the whipped egg whites and mix again for 20 seconds on speed 3.
Line the moulds with muslin or similar (new pieces of Chux) and fill with the cheese mixture, smoothing out the top. Leave on a tray overnight in the fridge to drain.
To make the sauce, place the strawberries and kirsch into the TM bowl and blend for 30 seconds on speed 9.
To serve, unmould the cheeses onto plates and surround with the strawberry sauce and offer more cream and sugar.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
OK, so it is not mind shattering and it is not really a berry recipe as such but I was looking through recipes and saw a Tivoli aux fraises recipe. It has Kirsch jelly, Bavarian cream, strawberry purée, strawberries, kirsch, maraschino and Chantilly cream. A ring mould is lined with the kirsch jelly and filled with Bavarian cream with strawberry purée before being allowed to set and served with strawberries soaked in kirsch and maraschino and some Chantilly cream. Sounded interesting, but then I saw Junket directly below.
Strange, here is a book written by one of the greatest chefs that the world has known, with a recipe for junket.
Then I looked in the Introduction and was reminded that “Ma Cuisine is not just an aide-mémoire for the experienced cook but a kitchen book of recipes which are put as clearly as possible, so as to make them practical. Although the book is intended for everyday cooking, it is none the less valuable to the restaurateur, the head waiter and the chef. The ordinary housewife will find here delicious recipes within the limits of her purse. One must not forget that good sound cooking, even the very simplest, makes a contented home”
So wrote Auguste Escoffier. Sound advice. So I decide to make junket. I still had some tablets from experiments with making cheese and thought that I would see if they were still OK. Junket powder is available in Australia through Simply Junket and can be purchased in many delis and grocers throughout the land. If you contact them here, then they will happily respond.
The Thermomix has the ability to heat the milk to 37°C without having to worry about it overheating and denaturing the rennet. It really is very simple.
The milk may be flavoured with various essences or flavourings after warming the milk and before adding the junket powder. You can top the junket with fruits or muesli or whatever takes your fancy.
Remember, you can use junket powder to make cottage cheese, which is what I intend to do for another recipe.
1/8 teaspoon of Simply Junket powder
1 tablespoon sugar or to taste
Place sugar into TM bowl and grind for 10 seconds on speed 9
Add milk and heat for 3 minutes at 37°C on speed 2.
Dissolve Simply Junket powder in a teaspoon of water and add to TM bowl.
Mix for 5 seconds on speed 4 and then pour into serving bowls or glasses.
Allow the junket to set at room temperature for 10 – 15 mins and then place in the fridge
to chill until ready to serve.
Toppings may be added just prior to serving.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
This recipe comes from the book “A Passion for Fruit” by Lorzenza de’Medici. Similar to Lynne Mullins’ book “produce”, it has chapters on each fruit with an introduction and then some recipes.
There are many recipes for various berries, but one that caught my eye was Strawberry Tiramisu.
The book has suggestions for making the tiramisu as one large dish or individual dishes using trifle sponges cut into circles. I decided to make individual tiramisu with the usual savoiardi biscuits.
The flavour was obviously good enough as they all went very quickly.
50 g sugar
300 g whipping cream
200 g mascarpone cheese
180 g sponge fingers
200 ml sweet white wine (or 1 cup water with ½ teaspoon of rosewater)
300 g strawberries, hulled
Icing sugar to dust.
Place the sugar in the TM bowl and grind for 10 seconds on speed 9. Place the butterfly over the blades and add the cream and beat for 1 minute on speed 3.
Remove the butterfly, scrape down the cream, add the mascarpone and beat for 20 seconds on speed 5.
Place quarter of this mixture onto the base of a serving bowl. Dip the sponge fingers briefly into the wine (or water mixture) and arrange them over the mascarpone. Place another quarter of the mascarpone mixture on the biscuits and then top with half of the strawberries. Cover this with another quarter of the mascarpone mix and then repeat the procedure with the sponge fingers and remaining mascarpone mixture.
Leave this covered in the fridge for 2 hours before placing remaining strawberries on top and sprinkling with icing sugar.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
So, with berries as the theme and blueberries in the fridge, I turned to Lynne Mullins’ book “produce” to see what ideas she had for blueberries.
The book is a fantastic source of ideas with wonderful photos of fruit and vegetables at various markets and places around the world. There are photographs contributed by about 40 people and they just make you want to either go to the local market or get on a plane. When you see the market at Campo dei Fiori in Rome, or the markets of Paris and Seville, it is hard not to start planning a trip. My local green grocer has a copy in his store to help customers with their purchases and cooking.
I have met Lynne Mullins on a few occasions and we have one thing in common. Her husband and I share the same occupation. Other than that, she is attractive, has a wonderful knowledge of food, writes well and makes money out of her writings, so there are large differences. You will have seen some of her contributions in various papers and magazines including The Age/Sydney Morning Herald, Vogue and Australian Gourmet Traveller. You may recall “Three things with ...” in the Sunday Life magazine?
The section on berries has a photo with blueberries, strawberries and melons at Positano on the Amalfi coast and a recipe opposite for blueberries with sabayon sauce.
Now sabayon was the dish that George Calombaris made in the Thermomix during the Masterchef series last year. What he failed to do was explain just how much harder it is to make without the Thermomix. The other thing that was interesting was that nobody had told him to put the butterfly in the TMX, so many people trying to replicate his dish may be a little disappointed.
The following is similar in some respects to a dish with champagne and berries topped with sabayon sauce. The recipe from Lynne Mullins had marsala, along the lines of zabaglione, but I used crème de cassis and white wine.
Fresh Blueberries with sabayon sauce.
110 g sugar
5 egg yolks
1 tbsp crème de cassis
1/2 cup white wine
2 punnets blueberries
Place the sugar in the TM bowl and grind for 20 seconds on speed 9. Place the butterfly over the blades and add the egg yolks beat for 4 minutes at 50°C on speed 3.
Add the other ingredients and beat for 5 minutes at 80°C on speed 3. Check the consistency of the sabayon and cook for a little longer if necessary.
Divide the blueberries evenly between 4 serving dishes and then pour over the sabayon sauce.
Monday, January 11, 2010
Well with berries as the theme for the week I decided to check out the dessert section of the bookshelf and spotted a book that came with marriage. I cannot recall seeing it before and it is called Donvier Ice Cream by Irena Chalmers. It came with a hand- churned ice cream machine from the 1980s and had the subtitle “Homemade Ice Cream in 20 Minutes !” Well the Thermomix can do it in a couple of minutes.
The book has a surprisingly interesting collection of flavour combinations and ideas, including a macadamia nut ice cream à la Simca (an adaptation of a recipe from Simone Beck, who co-wrote Mastering the Art of French Cooking with Julia Child). There’s a gin and juniper berry sorbet, a pear & red wine sorbet, lychee sherbet and orange & campari sherbet. There are also frozen drinks suggested such as frozen margaritas and bellinis, and for the health conscious, there are lots of Lite suggestions.
So, this is a quick simple recipe more for those who do not use the Thermomix to see how easy making sorbets can be and for those with a Thermomix just to remind them that making sorbets helps keep the blades sharp.
It is a quick impressive dessert that can be whipped up in a few minutes when unexpected guests arrive. You can use various fruits and can substitute fruit juice or water for the liqueur.
Thermomix Blueberry Sorbet
60 g sugar
500 g frozen blueberries
200 g ice cubes
1/2 lemon, skin, pith and seeds removed
2 Tbsp crème de cassis
1 egg white
Place sugar in TM bowl and grind for 10 seconds on speed 10
Add berries, ice cubes, lemon and liqueur and blend at for 30 seconds on speed 9, using the spatula through the lid to help mix.
Add egg white and blend for another 30 seconds on speed 9.
Sunday, January 10, 2010
So, the last of “sweet” week. I was presented with two large zucchini that had escaped the attention of one of my colleague’s mothers in her zucchini patch.
I remembered having made zucchini cake many years ago and hunted down the recipe. It was in my 1981 copy of “A Wizz in the Kitchen”, written to promote the Breville Super Wizz.
It is amazing how many of these old recipes are still very popular 30 years on. It also shows how useful the slicing and shredding discs are, and why I will not part with my Magimix (Cuisinart) of 30 years.
The recipe originally asked for 4 – 5 small zucchini, but I just used the larger zucchini and discarded the soft seeded centre and used the harder outer section, including the skin. Once it is all chopped up and mixed with sugar and spice then nobody will know.
Thermomix Zucchini Cake
400 g sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
60 g oil
100 g walnuts
600 g zucchini, roughly chopped
375 g Self-raising flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 170°C. Grease two 21cm x 11cm loaf tins very well with oil.
Place eggs, sugar, vanilla and oil into TM bowl and beat for 2 minutes on speed 5.
Add walnuts and zucchini and blend for 15 - 20 seconds on speed 5, until the zucchini is shredded.
Add flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon and mix for 20 seconds on Reverse and speed 4.
Place mixture into loaf tins and bake for 40 – 50 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer.
Leave in tins for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool.
Serve sliced and well buttered.
Saturday, January 9, 2010
This is a recipe from Antonio Carluccio’s book “An Invitation to Italian Cooking” (1991) Pavillion Books Ltd. The recipe came from a restaurant near Treviso in Italy.
The fritole are similar to bunuelos with a dough similar to choux pastry being fried in oil.
Carluccio said that he had decided that due to their heavenly lightness the only way to describe them was “angel’s farts”
One extra ingredient that possibly helps with the lightness is the baking powder added to the mix. It is not essential to have the baking powder with vanilla, but it is available in Australia and so should be easy enough to source. You can, of course, replace it with ordinary baking powder and some vanilla essence.
This was to be in the “soft” week, but as I am so far behind – it is in with the “sweet”.
Angels’ Farts (Fritole di Lino)
100 g milk
100 g water
50 g sugar
15 g butter
200 g flour
2 tsp baking powder with vanilla (eg Lievito paneangeli)
Olive oil for frying
1 Tbsp vanilla sugar (or 1/2 tsp vanilla extract)
150 g sugar
500 g milk
50 g corn flour
Place milk, water, sugar and butter into TM bowl and heat for 7 minutes at 100°C on Speed 1.
Add the flour and baking powder and blend for 15 seconds on Speed 6.
Allow to cool to 60°C and then add the eggs one at a time through the opening in the lid with the tm set for 3 minutes at speed 5.
Remove to a bowl and allow to cool for half an hour.
Place olive oil in a pan to a level of 2 cm and heat to 180°C.
Drop teaspoons of dough into the oil. It should immediately swell and usually turn itself over. The balls should be browned on all sides. Remove and drain on absorbent paper. The balls should have a crisp outer coat and hollow centre. Keep warm while preparing the filling.
Roughly clean the TM bowl and add all the ingredients for the filling. Cook for 8 minutes at 90°C on Speed 3. Leave aside to cool before placing into a piping bag.
Make a small hole in the base of each puff and fill with the cream filling.
Friday, January 8, 2010
Well there were still grapes in the fridge and so what to do. Many years ago I recall watching a cooking program that I was sure was The de Medici Kitchen and there was a description of a flat-bread being made at harvest time stuffed and topped with grapes. OK, a sweet foccacia !!
So I looked through my books by Lorenza de Medici and could not find the recipe. So, then looked through other Italian books and finally found it in Claudia Roden's book "The Food of Italy" on page 137. Although my older edition has a different cover.
There is a link to search the book here and Judith Sweet (this week's theme !) wrote up the recipe in the Hobart Mercury here.
It is a very simple dish and a good way to use up grapes while making bread. You can just use all grapes or for a boozy taste use the dessert wine- soaked raisins. You can just use your favourite bread dough or pizza dough as the base with some sugar added.
It is a rustic dish and designed to be eaten by the grape pickers.
Florentine flat bread with grapes
(Schiacciata con l’uva)
2 tbsp fresh yeast or 1 tbsp dried yeast
150ml milk, lukewarm
300g bakers' flour
500g black grapes, pitted, skin on
200g raisins soaked in Vin Santo or other
sweet dessert wine.
If using fresh yeast, place it in the TM bowl with the milk and mix for 10 seconds at 37°C on speed 4. Add flour, 100g of sugar and the salt and mix for 15 seconds at 37°C on speed 4.
If using dried yeast, add it to the flour, 100g of sugar and the salt and mix for 10 seconds at 37°C on speed 4. Then add the milk and mix for 15 seconds at 37°C on speed 4.
Place the Thermomix into the Closed Lid position and set to use the Interval button to Knead for 3 minutes then leave in the TM bowl to double in size.
Once doubled, punch the dough done and set the machine to knead for another 1 minute 30 seconds.
Remove dough and shape into two rounds about 22cm across.
Place one on a floured baking tray and cover it with half the grapes and half the raisins, drained.
Place the remaining dough on top, press down quite firmly and cover with the rest of
the grapes and drained raisins.
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Cover the dough and leave until doubled in size.
Sprinkle with the remaining 30g sugar and bake for about 45 minutes, until golden on top.
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Well sweet was the theme and as I love making custards in the Thermomix Varoma (steaming attachment) and mangoes are very plentiful at present, steamed mango custards it was for me.
The book that inspired me was “Belle Cuisine, The international encyclopedia of New Cuisine” by Hilary Walden ( and Jean-Louis Pollet) 1986, Quatro Publishing. It is interesting to look back at what was in vogue 25 years ago. Many of the dishes would still basically be acceptable with flavour combinations and techniques, but maybe not the presentations.
However, any book that has pictures of M. Bocuse and acknowledges his contribution to cuisine is bound to attract my attention.
There are many recipes for free-standing mousses, custards and bavarois, so I decided to try a mango custard, using just mango, sugar and eggs. The custards were cooked in the Varoma and when first cooked and unmoulded they wanted to collapse (as in the picture with the glazed mango cheek), but as they cooled, and especially after refrigerating, they became firm, yet silky smooth.
Mango Custards in the Varoma
50 g sugar
2 large ripe mangoes, approx 400g flesh in chunks
4 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
Place sugar in TM bowl and grind for 30 seconds on speed 9.
Add the mango flesh and blend for 20 seconds on speed 5.
Add the eggs and vanilla and mix through for 15 seconds on speed 3.
Pour the mixture into 6 greased dariole moulds and place into the Varoma tray.
Place 700 g water into the TM bowl and position lid and Varoma tray.
Cook the custards for 30 minutes at Varoma temperature on speed 1. Check after 25 minutes to see if the custards have set. They may need a little less or more time.
Leave for 5 minutes before gently unmoulding, or cool and place in fridge for a few hours to serve cold.
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
This sweet little number comes from Allan Campion and Michele Curtis’ book “In The Kitchen”. This cookbook has a wealth of (over 1000) very tasty recipes presented in easy to understand format, using readily available ingredients.
I have made many other recipes from their book, but this one caught Mrs T’s eye and, as we had all the ingredients (except sweetened condensed milk), I decided to make some dulce and then use some of the thickened mixture to substitute for the canned milk.
Also, simply because the triangular mould was there, I decided to vary the recipe.
The original recipe only has coffee drizzled over the last layer of sponge fingers, however, I would use more coffee and liqueur next time and drizzle over more of the biscuits. You don’t want to soak them, but some extra flavour and moisture would be good.
It has been a great success though and thanks go to Allan & Michele, and Rosemary di Benedetto who supplied them with the idea.
125 ml strong black coffee (or more as desired)
2 Tbsp coffee liqueur
395 g can sweetened condensed milk
600 ml cream
60 ml milk
12 sponge fingers
Carefully line a medium (21cm x 9cm x 6cm) loaf tin with cling film.
Mix the coffee and liqueur together and allow to cool.
Position the butterfly over the blades in the TM bowl. Place the condensed milk, cream and milk into the TM bowl and whip for 3 minutes on speed 4, or until thick. Add half of the coffee mixture and beat for 10 seconds on speed 3.
Lay 6 sponge finger biscuits in the base of the tray (I would then spoon over some coffee mixture) and cover with the milk and cream mix. Top with the remaining sponge fingers and spoon over the remaining coffee mixture.
Remove from the tin and cut into 1 cm slices and then cut these diagonally. Serve with a butterscotch sauce.
Monday, January 4, 2010
“The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook” would probably not be well known to most blog readers, however, much can be found online about Alice B. Toklas, her life and times with Gertrude Stein and others, and her cookbook.
On page 259 is the infamous recipe for Haschich Fudge (which anyone could whip up on a rainy day), that inspired the title for the film starring Peter Sellers “I Love You, Alice B. Toklas”. The instructions point out that “obtaining the canibus may present certain difficulties.....”, but that “two pieces (of the fudge) are quite sufficient.”
It also has 2 versions of Dulce. Neither recipe really gives the most wonderful explanation for how to prepare dulce de leche. You can find the recipes from the book with instructions for the dulce by searching in the Amazon link.
Despite not being thorough in the explanations and testing, there are many interesting recipes and anecdotes including the time she prepared sea bass for Pablo Picasso.
It has loads of great ideas and thinking about the life of Alice B. Toklas makes you sit back and dream of yesteryear.
There are many recipes now for dulce de leche made with cans of sweetened condensed milk heated either on the stove or in the oven. The Thermomix makes light work of making the dulce from milk, cream, sugar and bicarb soda – and it odes the stirring that Alice said needed to be continuous.
There have been problems with the mixture bubbling over like Mt Vesuvius, but if the speed is kept at Speed 5, then the foam will not form. I made a little video to show that when the speed drops from 5 to 3, the mixture starts to bubble through the opening in the lid. But turning the speed back up to 5 eliminates the foam and allows the dulce to happily develop over 45 minutes.
Unfortunately there were problems embedding the video, so if you click on the thumbnail you can see that video (if you need to)
After about 15 minutes of mixing the liquid resembles sweetened condensed milk and I took some out to make a tiramisù ice cream.
Once it was finished the mixture was thick and caramelly and deliciously sweet.
The recipe below is based on one from Amanda in Spain.
Thermomix Dulce de Leche
1 litre milk
1/2 teaspoon bicarb soda
Place ingredients into TM bowl and cook for 45 minutes on Varoma temperature at Speed 5. Place basket on lid with an open-weave cloth to allow it to evaporate without spraying mxiture all over the room.
When finished, quickly pour into jar and leave it to cool. When it cools it will be nice and thick. Keep in the fridge
Sunday, January 3, 2010
With soft as the theme for the week I just had to put in a custard. This was inspired by my meal at Ristorante Cracco earlier in the year. Carlo Cracco uses sea urchins (ricci di mare) in many of his dishes, including this beef kidneys with sea urchin roe.
He also made a creamed risotto with sea urchins and coffee in the Thermomix in Heston Blumenthal's episode on risotto.
The chapter "Harbour Picnic" in Stephanie Alexander's "A Shared Table" contains a recipe for a sea urchin custard. You can find a snippet with Janni Kyritsis and Stephanie talking about sea urchins and the sea urchin custard here at ABC downloads.
Many people will be put off by the appearance of the sea urchin and fortunately you can now buy them already cleaned. There are Australian and imported roe for sale from good fishmongers. They have a very delicate flavour and despite their appearance are easy to clean and obtain the roe.
I know this is not going to be a big hit, but we loved it and MrsT was very sceptical when she saw me preparing the dish. However, once she had tried it she was hooked on the flavour and texture.
Sea urchin custards in the Thermomix Varoma
4 large sea urchins
2 Tbsp chervil leaves
1 golden shallot
600 ml cream
2 egg yolks
Salt and pepper
6 greased small ceramic dishes
Cut open the sea urchins, pointy nosed pliers inserted into the mouth and then opened is the easiest way. Reserve the orange tongues of roe (there should be 5 per urchin). Place on paper towel and cover with plastic wrap.
Place the shallot into the TM bowl and mince for 10 seconds on speed 5. Add the chervil, 14 of the sea urchin roe and the cream and cook for 10 minutes at 80°C on speed 1. Leave in TM bowl for 1 hour to infuse.
After 1 hour blend for 30 seconds on speed 10. Add the eggs and egg yolks and blend for 20 seconds on speed 6. Add salt and pepper to taste and pass the mixture through a muslin cloth (note that I was too lazy to do this and so there are specks on the custards :) ).
Pour the mixture into the ceramic dishes and arrange in the Varoma tray and dish. Put 700g water into the TM bowl, position the lid and Varoma and cook for 20 minutes at Varoma temperature on speed 1.
Leave the custards to settle for 5 minutes before garnishing with two sea urchin tongues per bowl.