South African Corn Bread

south african cornbread goodfoodeveryday

                                            South African Corn Bread [Mealie Bread]                                             Photo by Marconia Schembri during a live tv show    

‘A delicious savory quick all-in-one bake that is great as a snack or to accompany a soup or salad.’

You will need:
500g self raising four
150g cheddar
200g sweetcorn
400ml yoghurt
2 eggs
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon natural stock powder
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon fresh marjoram, finely chopped
pinch of dried marjoram
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to season

For the top: 50g extra grated cheddar and 50g extra sweetcorn
Preheat the oven to 160C.
Cook the onion in the olive oil on low heat until it is translucent.  Place on kitchen towel to absorb the extra oil and allow to cool.
Sift the flour twice into a large bowl.  Add the salt, pepper, dried marjoram, smoked paprika, natural stock powder and mix gently making sure that all the bits of sweetcorn and onion are covered with flour.
In a separate bowl mix well the eggs, yoghurt, fresh herbs and grated cheddar.
Prepare a loaf tin by brushing it lightly with olive oil or use a baking spray.
Gently and firmly use a large metal spoon to mix in the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf tin.
Sprinkle the extra cheddar cheese and sweetcorn on top.
Bake for 35 minutes.  Allow to rest for 10 minutes and serve warm

 

Tip:  This loaf freezes well.  Slice and toast it, then top it with scrambled eggs for a very delicious breakfast or light meal

 
I use sweetcorn by 3 leaves, sea salt, pepper smoked paprika and dried marjoram by Schwartz, natural stock cubes by Kallo at Good Earth, eggs and vegetables by Big Fresh, cheddar by Experia the Deli and self raising flour by St Georges Brand.

Low fat Chicken Ricotta Muffins with Spelt Flour

chicken muffins 2

Low fat chicken ricotta muffins, as seen on tv

‘baking is a therapy for me, dipping my hands in flour and transforming it into light bakes, I could do it forever.  But I especially like using spelt, the silkiness of the flour, the nutty flavor makes it my favorite choice at the moment.  

A few of my readers requested chicken muffins and here they are :)’

You will need:

125g chicken, cooked and cut up into small pieces
275g spelt flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
4 eggs
200ml water
salt and pepper to season
50g ricotta (I use sheep’s milk)
1 small onion, peeled, diced, sauteed and placed on kitchen towel to remove grease
1/4 teaspoon Provence Herbs
50g cheddar and 50g local white gbejna, if you do not live on the island use a hard goat’s cheese

Preheat oven to 180C

Sift the flour.  Add the baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt and peper and herbs.
Place the ricotta and eggs in a large bowl.  Use a hand blender to make a smooth puree.
Add the chicken pieces to the flour and mix gently to cover the chicken with a light coat of flour.
Add half the grated cheese.
Use a large metal spoon to gently mix in the egg and ricotta mixture.  Do not overmix.
Add enough water, little by little until you have a dropping consistency.
Line a muffin tray with paper cases.
Fill the muffin cases with the mixture.
Sprinkle the rest of the grated cheese on the top.
Bake at 180C for 10 to 12 minutes.
Allow to cool before removing from the muffin tray.

 

Gluten free vegetable muffins made with chickpea flour

Chickpea flour muffins

Vegetable muffins made with chickpea flour. I use a mix of steamed kale, barely cooked cauliflower, raw carrot and roasted butternut squash, as seen on TV

‘an ideal addition to a picnic, kids’ school lunch boxes or a treat with a salad during the working day.  I just love chickpea flour, the flavor, the texture, the natural colour…  These are so easy to make that you can have fresh muffins every day.  Don’t be tempted to freeze them as the texture changes’

You will need:

  • 3 cups gram flour (chickpea flour)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 cups fresh vegetables of your choice  of your choice, I used steamed kale (finely chopped), barely cooked cauliflower (barely cooked, broken into little florettes), raw grated carrot and butter nut squash (caramelized with skin on and cut into small cubes)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped sundried tomatoes (remove all the salt)
  • a pinch of minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon herbs de provence
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 50 g  grated and 50 g grated hard white gbejna (if you do not live on the island use a white goat’s cheese)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder (gf)

Sift the gram flour.  Add the bicarbonate of soda and baking powder.

Prepare the vegetable and mix them gently in a bowl.  Add the minced garlic and herbs and seasoning.
Mix the olive oil with the eggs.
Add the vegetable mix and half the grated cheeses to the gram flour and gently mix until they are coated all over but make sure you do not break the vegetables up.
Add the egg mixture to the dry mixture.  Gently mix in but do  not over mix.  Add enough water a little at a time to achieve dropping consistency.
Prepare a muffin tray with paper cases.
Spoon the mixture into the paper cases.
Sprinkle with grated cheese on top, just a little, do not over do it.
Bake at 180 C for 12 minutes.
Allow to cool before removing from the muffin tray

‘They are soooo delicious’

Easy Cheese and Bacon Bread (with no yeast, no eggs, no butter)

hobz bejkon

Bacon Cheese no yeast bread rolls as seen on TV today

Yumm!  These small bread rolls seem to have everyone’s favourite ingredients.  You will need:

3 slices of bacon or equivalent pancetta, chopped and cooked, keep some back for top of rolls (today I used a selection of cold meats by Citterio
250g self raising flour less 3 tablespoons
3 tablespoons spelt flour
100ml olive oil
75g mature cheddar or grated parmegiano
150ml yoghurt
1 tablespoon tomato puree
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley and basil, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce or Balsamic Vinegar
Salt and Pepper

garnish with sesame seeds and when you take out of the oven, brush with olive oil

Measure the self raising flour. Remove 3 tablespoons and add 3 tablespoons of spelt flour. Sift the flour twice into a large bowl. Add all the other ingredients without mixing, just pile them up on top of the flour but if you wish keep back a bit of bacon or pancetta or cold Italian meats to garnish the top of the rolls.

Then use a large metal spoon to gently but firmly fold in the ingredients. Bring together with your hands to form a dough. Do not knead it but form it into individual rolls. Use a sharp knife to cut a cross in the middle of each roll. Sprinkle the rest of the bacon/pancetta and parmesan/cheddar on the surface. Top with a pinch of sesame seeds.

Bake at 180C for 20 to 25 minutes in a preheated oven.

They are great with soups and for lunchboxes or a light snack.

St Martin’s Loaf

Our larger than usual version of St Martin's loaf TVM2 Lifestyle & Co Lea's styling by Rodianne Borg, Lea's clothes by Punt Roma, Hair by Inglot

Our larger than usual version of St Martin’s loaf
TVM2 Lifestyle & Co
Lea’s styling by Rodianne Borg, Lea’s clothes by Punt Roma, Hair by Inglot
Photography Stefan Stafrace

This coming Sunday the feast of St Martin is celebrated and sweet yeast loaves together with nuts, clementines, figs and more are given to children in bags brimming at the seams to signify the abundance and bounty of this glorious land.

St Martin's extra large loaf as seen on TV #Malta

St Martin’s extra large loaf as seen on TV #Malta

Rather than the small loaves, we made one big one and Brian decorated it with liqorish sweets.

You will need:

400g plain flour
a pinch of salt
1 sachet dry yeast (11g)
50ml olive oil
35g sugar
35g stevia
half a pod vanilla
250ml lukewarm milk
a sprinkle of sesame seeds for the top pre-baking
1 tablespooon warm honey to glaze after baking
a handful of multi-colored liqorish sweets

Sift the flour and add the salt. Add the olive oil, dry yeast, sugar, stevia, vanilla and mix. Then add the luke warm milk and combine using a wooden spoon to make a sticky dough. Cover and leave to rise for 2 hours or leave overnight and you will find you will not need to knead the dough at all.

Then turn the dough out on to clean work surface (you shouldn’t need any flour) and punch out the air.

Now divide the mixture into the number of loaves that you would like. We made one large one instead of small ones.

Take each piece of dough and shape it into a round then roll it to form a smoothish round ball.

Arrange the loaf or loaves on a greased baking sheet. Leave to rise once more for an hour. The loaf should double in size again.

Sprinkle with sesame seeds and bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 20 minutes.
You can glaze the surface with some warm honey by using a brush.
When the loaf cools slightly, place the liquorish sweets neatly on the surface by poking them into the surface of the loaf.

You can watch us on demand via streaming online from anywhere in the world !

You can watch us on demand via streaming online from anywhere in the world !#TVM2

Quick muffins with the kids

Making muffins with the kids #Malta

Making muffins with the kids #Malta

This week I made quick muffins with the kids during the show.

Baking with kids #Malta

Baking with kids #Malta

They specially loved decorating them and you can see the delight on their faces.

For the muffins you will need:

4 cups self raising flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
juice and grated zest of half a lemon
1 cup coconut
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 eggs
4 tablespoons honey or stevia or 2 of each

Sieve the flour and mix all the dry ingredients together. In a separate container mix all the liquid ingredients together. Use a metal spoon to fold in the wet ingredients into the dry ones. Prepare muffin cases on a try. Spoon or pipe the batter into the cases. Bake in a pre heated oven at 170C for 20 minutes.

Out from the oven :)

Out from the oven 🙂

Allow the muffins to cool before decorating them.

To avoid more processed sugar in the form of sugar I brushed the muffins with warm honey

To avoid more processed sugar in the form of sugar I brushed the muffins with warm honey

To avoid processed sugar in the form of icing, I brushed the top of the muffins with warm honey and allowed the kids to decorate them to their liking.

Happily decorating and so colorful :)

Happily decorating and so colorful 🙂

For the recipe in Maltese, click here

Quick Foccacia made with yoghurt

You do not even need to measure your flour and yoghurt, simply add yoghurt and work it into the flour by mixing and without rubbing in. I prefer to use my hands. I also added some dried oregano and sea salt but you can also simply leave them out.

Foccacia ready to go !

Foccacia ready to go !

You will need:

450g self raising flour, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon sea salt
400 ml yoghurt mixed with water (I use equal amounts of water and yoghurt)

And for the topping:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 can artichoke hearts
Fresh basil leaves
Cherry Tomatoes, chopped into squares
Some sundried tomatoes
a few anchovies
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
More dried oregano to lightly dust

Preheat the oven to 220C. Brush a baking tray lightly with olive oil.

Sieve the flour into a large bowl, add the salt and oregano.
Make a well in the centre and pour in most of the yoghurt.
With your hand stiff and your fingers spread out like a claw, start mixing the flour into the yoghurt using a circular motion. Add the remaining yoghurt and keep mixing like this until you have soft dough. Do not knead it but work it very gently to bring it together.
Transfer to a floured surface and place on the baking dish. Spread it out by patting it gently with your fingers. Brush the top with some more olive oil.
Make dimples all over with your fingertips on the top of the dough.
Push a small piece of olive, caper, sun dried tomato and basil leaf into each dimple.
Then drizzle over the olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and freshly ground pepper, Sprinkle some dried oregano.

No yeast Focaccia ready for the oven

No yeast Focaccia ready for the oven

Bake in the oven for about 20 to 25 minutes at 220 C until the bread is nice and golden on the top and bottom.

When the focaccia is cooked but still hot, brush just a little more olive oil over the top and allow to cool slightly before serving. I topped with more cherry tomatoes.

‘I use artichoke hearts, olives and tuna by 3 leaves, fresh vegetables and herbs by Big Fresh, anchovies by Rizzoli Emanuelli, flour by St Georges Brand, dried herbs by Schwartz, lactose free yoghurt by Alpro at Good Earth,kitchenware by Tescoma.  My fresh potted plants come from Callus Garden Centre’

Creamy Cauilflower Soup with Pesto Calabrese and tear & share soda bread

Creamy Cauliflower Soup with no cream, potatoes or butter

Creamy Cauliflower Soup with no cream, potatoes or butter

Creamy without the need to add cream or butter, or even potatoes, cauliflower manages to produce the same creaminess at only 25 calories per 100g. I used my new crockpot again to make this soup. I find it so convenient to allow it to just cook slowly while I am out and return to a healthy meal.

For the low fat creamy cauliflower soup you will need:
4 small cloves or 2 giant ones, peeled and crushed
1 cauliflower, trimmed and remove core
1/2 a white onion
4 cups water and all natural vegetable cube
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
parsley to garnish

Chop the cauliflower into chunks. Place in the crockpot with the garlic, add the olive oil and vegetable stock. Season with salt and turn on the slow cooker. It requires 4 hours on a slow temperature.

Allow to cool and blend. If it is too thick add some water.
Taste, and adjust the seasoning as needed.

For the Pesto Calabrese you will need:
I make a large batch and use it for a pasta dish the next day.

100ml olive oil
1/2 white onion, chopped
sea salt
2 red bell peppers, seeds removed, cut into chunks
2-3 fresh chili peppers, depending how spicy you like it, seeds remove and chopped
150 g ricotta
2 ripe tomatoes, peeled, deseeded and choppped
2 small red chillies, chopped
1 teaspoon oregano leaves
1 clove garlic, peeled (optional)
150g parmesan, grated
3 basil leaves, just for flavor, I like to retain an orange/red colour

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil, add the onion and sauté until the onion is soft.

Add the bell peppers, and cook for 10 minutes until everything is soft. Turn off the heat, taste and season.

Allow to cool, add the rest of the ingredients and blend until very smooth and creamy. If necessary add more water. Refrigerate until you need to use it.

For the tear and share soda bread you will need:

Tear and Share Soda Bread

Tear and Share Soda Bread

A little olive oil, for greasing
500g self raising flour
1 tablespoon semolina
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 rounded teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
2 spoons parmesan
Pinch of dried crushed chili seeds
Pinch of dried basil
250 ml yoghurt
a glass of cold water
some sesame seeds to sprinkle on top

I used a 23 cm springforn cake tin

Preheat the oven to 200C.
Brush the cake tin with the olive oil.

Sieve the flour. Mix the flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda together in a large mixing bowl. Add the parmesan, chili flakes and dried basil.

Pour the yoghurt into the flour mixture and gently fold it in. Do not rub in. Add water as necessary until it forms a dough.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Place the semolina in your hands to prevent a lot of stickiness. Shape even balls and fill up the cake tin. Brush the surface with olive oil and scatter the sesame seeds on top.

Tear and Share Soda Bread

Tear and Share Soda Bread

Bake for 15 minutes, check them out and lower the temperature and carry on cooking for a bit longer if necessary.

Reheat the soup and pour into individual soup bowls. Add a teaspoon of Calabrian Pesto to each soup bowl then take a skewer and swirl it around. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve with tear and share soda bread rolls.

Carob and dandelion fairies, close your eyes and make a wish #Malta  [photo Ian Noel Pace]

Close your eyes and make a wish #Malta [photo Ian Noel Pace]

Ftira with pulled pork

Delicious Maltese #ftira with traditional kunserva, giardinera and pulled pork as seen on TV

Delicious Maltese #ftira with traditional kunserva, giardinera and pulled pork as seen on TV

We have here what is probably one of the best sourdough breads in the world. The small old fashioned bakeries are still active and alive in the hub of every village and town.

Old village bakery in the heart of a Mediterranean village

Old village bakery in the heart of a Mediterranean village

Fermented slowly the bread is crunchy and crusty with the inside, moist, light and an overall flavor that is unique.

Crusty and crunchy with the softest of interiors, Maltese bread, freshly baked a few times a day

Crusty and crunchy with the softest of interiors, Maltese bread, freshly baked a few times a day

For my recipe I use ftira flat loaf topped with sesame seed. Traditionally these loaves are dipped in olive oil and lightly spread with tomato paste and an optional addition is tuna.

Traditionally #ftira with tuna

Traditionally #ftira with tuna

I replaced tuna with slow cooked pulled pork during our tv programme with a very delicious result.

Ftira with pulled pork as seen on ONE TV

Ftira with pulled pork as seen on ONE TV

You will need:

1 ftira
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons tomato puree
100g giardinera
100g cherry tomatoes, halved and I use a mix of red and yellow ones
a few mint leaves
sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
20g olives, sliced
150g pulled pork which I prepared in my crockpot and I will share the recipe with you this week

Place the olive oil in a flat plate. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cut the ftira in half and dip the cut surface into the olive oil. Spread with tomato puree. Top with pulled pork, then the giardinera, fresh tomatoes, olives and finally mint leaves. Serve.

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#ftira with pulled pork

#ftira with pulled pork


Photography Ian Noel Pace

No knead Date and Apple Bundt

There is something I find so therapeutic about working with yeast and this week’s bake is worth trying out.

You simply need to mix the ingredients with a spoon for the dough before you go to bed, and the next morning you will wake up to a very springy, airy dough that feels so light to touch. Its amazing.

As much as I try to avoid processed sugar in most of my recipes, I find the best medium for making the most of your yeast is sugar. I know that there are alternatives but nothing achieves the same result.

No knead Date and Apple Bundt as seen on ONE TV

No knead Date and Apple Bundt as seen on ONE TV

For the Date and Apple bundt you will need:

200g dates
250g strong flour
6g instant dried yeast (around half a sached)
pinch of salt
100g sugar (and it also works well with 50g sugar and equivalent of 50g stevia)
3 tablespoons apple jam (I used local wild apples, homemade)
2 eggs
1 teaspoon cinnamon
125ml plain yoghurt
2 drops good vanilla extract
grated zest of 1 lemon

Chop the dates, add the flour, instant dry yeast, salt, sugar, eggs, cinnamon, yoghurt and vanilla. Stir with a wooden spoon, then bring together to form a loose dough. Lightly oil a large plastic or glass container. Place the dough inside the container and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Leave to prove overnight.

In the morning you will find that the dough has risen and more than doubled in size. Place on a lightly covered surface and bring together. Cut in half.

Grease a bundt tin and dust some flour in it.

Take half the dough and stretch it into a long cylinder. Bring the two ends together, join and drop into the bundt tin. On top of the dough add the apple jam and then with the other half of the dough repeat the process, pull to a long shape, join up the ends together and drop into the bundt tin on top of the apple jam. This means that you will have the apple jam as a layer between the two pieces of dough. Cover again with a clean dish cloth and allow to prove for an hour or until it doubles up in size.

In the meantime preheat the oven to 160C and bake for 25 minutes. Allow to cool. I topped my bundt with a light coating of warm honey using a pastry brush and sprinkled pistachios on top.

And with the absence of our two photographers this week during the show, Gino on holiday and Ian covering a news story, I took my bundt home to photograph at leisure. Too days later with the photos out of the way, I cut myself a piece and toasted it. Surprisingly the flavors were even better than when it was freshly baked!

Teatime by the sea, no knead Date Bundt

Teatime by the sea, no knead Date Bundt

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