Kwarezimal for Lent



Eggless and with no added fat, my recipe based on Helen and Anne Caruana’s old recipe from their book Is featured on Littlerock this month.

For My mini kwarezimal of last year click here.

Converting processed sugar to natural sugar: banana coconut cake

On TV this week, I featured a new cake which proved to be a success, not only in the taste and texture but also in the response from our audience.  

In a Mediterranean Diet we go back to old traditions to the days when processed food was not around.  I have been testing a line of new recipes for the last 5 years and here is one of my favorite ones. 



For the banana and coconut, nearly-all-in-one cake with no butter and no sugar you wil need:

3 cups self raising flour  
2 cups dessicated coconut
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
a few drops good vanilla extract
1 cup ricotta
4 eggs, separated, egg whites beaten until they stand in peaks
4 bananas
juice of one lemon
1 spoon cornflour

and for the processed sugar:
1 1/2 cups golden raisins  soaked in just enough water to cover for a few hours or overnight.  Then simply use a hand blender to process to a pulp.

Method:
in a large bowl sieve the flour and cornflour.  Add the bicarbonate of soda and coconut.  Mix.
In another bowl use a hand blender to process the bananas, lemon juice, egg yolks, vanilla, ricotta.  
Add the flour mixture a little at a time and mix in using a metal spoon.
add the beaten egg whites.  Mix in gently.
Immediately pour the cake mix into a prepared cake tin and bake in a preheated oven at 170c for 35 minutes. 

 



Broccoli mint soup and this weekend’s catch !

My soup today is a combination of broccoli and mint, fresh mint, cooked mint and dry mint, producing a delicious soup with a depth of minty flavour.

You will need:

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1 tablespoon olive oil
1 head fresh broccoli
1 natural organic stock cube
1 medium onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, smashed
1 potato potato, peeled and diced
A large fist of fresh mint, chopped some leaves kept for garnish
1 teaspoon teaspoon dried mint
Salt if required
100ml plain yoghurt
Fresh gbejna , one per portion.

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Cook the chopped onion and garlic over low heat. Add the chopped potato and dried mint and cook for 5 minutes. Add the broccoli, stir and half the fresh mint. Add the stock cube and enough water to immerse the vegetables. Bring to boil on strong heat. Lower the heat and cook for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are just soft. Do not overcook. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Do not cool down on the stove to retain the color of the vegetables. Add half the remaining fresh mint and the yoghurt and use a hand blender to whizz it until it is smooth. Add seasoning if desired.

Reheat and to serve add the remainder of the herbs. Stir. Serve in soup bowls with a fresh gbejna and garnish with some mint leaves.

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That was this weekend’s catch of sardines before the bad weather hit us again…

Pasta shells with Borlotti beans

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During this week’s Mid Morning Show, I shared this simple dish that is one of my favorites.

You will need :

250g Borlotti Beans
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Borlotti beans: Soak overnight in water. Rinse and place in a pot. Cover in cold water and add one teaspoon bicarbonate of soda. Bring to boil. Simmer and cook on low heat, rolling boil , for 45 minutes. Drain the water.

500g pasta shells
Water

Cook the pasta in plenty salted as per instructions on the pack. For the last 5 minutes of cooking time, drain and transfer into the sauce. Cook for the last five minutes, turn off and cover.

For the sauce you will need :

2 tablespoons olive oil, hold one back for garnish
6 large tomatoes with skin on, roughly chopped
1 large clove garlic, grated
1 large onion, peeled and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 can tinned tomatoes
1 spoon tomato purée
A measuring jug of water
1/2 cup wine
A pinch of dried rosemary (missing ingredient! )
Salt and freshly ground pepper
For garnish: Around 10g per portion of local pekorin cheese
A dusting of finely grated lemon rind

Put a spoon of olive oil in a large pot on moderate heat. Add together the onion, grated garlic and fresh tomatoes. Cook on low heat until they soften. If necessary top with water from your jug. Do not allow to dry up. Cook until the mixture softens up. Add the wine then the tinned tomatoes fresh rosemary and dried rosemary. Leave to reduce.

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Stir in the extra parsley, stir. plate the pasta and add more Borlotti beans, lemon zest and parsley, top with local pekorin cheese

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Strawberry Cheese-Cake for Brilliant Baking Magazine

In this month’s Brilliant Baking Magazine you will find my new recipe for Strawberry Cheesecake.

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And on the cover Rosemary Shrager who will join me on my programme Dieta Mediterranja on 98FM which will be aired this week.

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and for the recipe in Maltese click here

Carnival Treats

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Carnival weekend is with us and the feast before the fast. We served Prinjolata during my Saturday baking morning yesterday and my crunchy potatoes.

The traditional prinjolata recipe can be found here in English and in Maltese.

There are other Carnival treats such as quick and easy cupcakes to make with the kids. ( and click here for Carnival Cupcakes recipe in Maltese ).

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I also love the Brazilian Brigaderios

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The prinjolata pops for using up leftovers.

(and for the recipe in Maltese)

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And Carnival Afghans with Perlini

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Happy holidays !

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