Thursday 27 February 2014

Beautiful Nutella Bread

 Daring Bakers this month as our host, Sawsan, of chef in disguise, challenged us to make beautiful, filled breads. 
I must admit when I saw this months challenge I was thrilled as I had seen a bread like this in Pintrest and have been planning to make them when I had time.
We could use variety of filling, and I pallend to go witht he Nutella one.
The bread was delicious not that soft as i would have expected and mine got too brown even though I lowered the temperatue when i saw it was getting dark.


1 can (400 gm) (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
3 large eggs
1 cup (240 ml) vegetable oil
1 cup (240 ml) warm water
3 teaspoons (15 ml) (12 gm) yeast
7 cups (1 kg) (2.2 lbs) all-purpose (plain) flour, approximately
Pinch of salt
Instead of the eggwash use
2 tablespoons (30 ml) (25 gm) (1 oz) milk powder
3 tablespoons (45 ml) lukewarm water
1teaspoon (5 ml) (5 gm) sugar
1/4 teaspoon (1 gm) instant coffee
For the filling
½ jar (200 gm) (7 oz) of nutella (or similar)


1. Mix the condensed milk, yeast, oil, water, and eggs in the bowl of your mixer
2. Add the flour one cup at a time and knead using the kneading attachment or by hand till you get a soft dough
3. The dough will be slightly sticky due to the sweetened condensed milk, don’t worry once the dough rests it will have a wonderful consistency
4. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and allow to rest till it doubles in size
5. Punch down the dough and divide it into 2 parts. Wrap one part in a plastic bag and work with the other
6. Divide the dough ball into 4 parts
7. Roll each part into a circle at least 20 cm (8 inch) in diameter
You can use a plate or any other round item as a template if you want your layers to be identical and uniform
8. Spread the Nutella (or similar filling) on the first layer
9. Place the second layer on top of the first and repeat
10. Top with the fourth layer, this time only brush it with butter.

Note:To help with the slippery Nutella, you can place the filled layers before cutting into the fridge for 20-30 minutes, this will help the nutella to firm up. That will make the cuts and twists easier.
11. Using a knife make cuts that divide the dough circles into 8 triangles starting at the center but don’t go all the way to the outer edge.
I find that using a ruler to mark the dough makes the cuts easier and more uniform.
You can also dip your knife in flour before cutting, that helps to prevent the layers from sticking together. I have also found that a pizza cutter works well because it is extra sharp.
12 Using a knife make cuts that divide the dough circles into 8 triangles

12. Make cuts that go 2/3 of the way in the middle of each triangle. The cuts should not reach the base of the triangle nor the tip as you can see in the picture

13. Take the tip of each triangle and insert it into the cut you made and pull it from the underside

14. Arrange the triangles on your baking sheet
Pinch the two angles at the base of the triangle together

14. Brush the dough with egg wash replacement
15. Allow to rest for 15 minutes during which you would heat your oven to very hot 500°F/240°C/gas mark 9 (rack in the middle)
16. Bake for 5 minutes on very hot 460°F/240°C/gas mark 9, then lower the temperature to moderately hot 390°F/200°C/gas mark 6 and bake for 15-20 more minutes

Monday 24 February 2014

Twisted bread with Féve Tonka

I have been wanting to make the Apricot Couronne from the time I saw when they ere making in Great Brisish Bake off. But then every time I wanted to make them,t here will be one ingridient I don't have at home. And then when I had all the ingridients I didn't had time to bake.
So when this month We Knead to Bake group decided to bake something of one'w own choice as Aparna's oven had to be repaired .
And the first recipe I thought was baki
ng this couronne though in the end I didn't as you can see.
What I did was take the recipe of the bread dough and then made into a twist with my own .
Which I must say turned out to be so good.
I even think these taste a bit like the bread/cookies I love to buy when I am in Cologne, though the ones I buy from there has marzipaan and almond flakes etc... but the similarity was with the crunch and the caramel taste one get from these.

This is one recipe I would make and of course with some other filling as they are so good.
One tip use baking paper to line the tray as there is butter sugar mix leaking while these are baked that if you don't use the baking paper it will be a very stick mess plus it will take hard work to clean the baking pan.

Original Recipe here
For the dough
250g/9oz strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
5g salt
7g/⅓oz instant yeast
50g/1¾oz unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
105ml/3½fl oz milk
1 free-range egg, lightly beaten
Filling: ( I didn't use the filling from the recipe did my own filling)

120 gm  unsalted butter, softened
120 gm dark muscovado sugar
1 Tonka beans grated

For the shiny glaze
3 tbsp of raspberry jam. ( the recipe said apricot jam but i didn't have that so use what i had)
Mw for 10 seconds and then you can use it for glazing.

For the sugar glaze
150 gm of powder sugar
1 to 2 tbso of egg whites ( if you don't want to used egg whites you can use water, I like the icing to get really hard so i use egg whites)
Tip the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the salt to one side of the bowl and the yeast to the other. Add the butter, milk and egg and mix to combine, using your hands. Continue to mix until you’ve picked up all the flour from the sides of the bowl. Use the dough to clean the inside of the bowl and keep going until you have a soft dough.
Tip the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and begin to knead. Keep kneading for 10-12 minutes. Work through the initial wet stage until the dough starts to form a soft, smooth skin.
When the dough feels smooth and silky, put it into a lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave to rise for one hour, or until doubled in size.
While the dough is rising, make the filling. Beat the butter and muscovado sugar and the grated tonka beans together until smooth.
Line a baking tray with baking parchment or silicone paper.
After the dough is doubled , divide in to 6 ( I got 6, depending ont he suze it might vary) equal parts. On a well floured surface, roll out each dough ball into ssuares ( lookg to the step by step picture).
Using a spoon spread the filling mixture on the dough, covering all of the surface in a thin layer. Roll into a log and cut lengthways into half.
Now take the 2 parts and twist together and form into a round.
Make sure you show the cut side up.
Repeat with all dough balls.
Transfer to a baking tray lined with baking paper.
Cover with a cloth and let rise for 25 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180°c and bake the twists for 20 to 22 minutes.
While baking you will see butter oozing out but that doesn't matter.
When it is baked remove them from the tray to a wire rack and brush with the Raspberry jam.
When the breads are fully cooled Drizzelz with the sugar glaze.
Sending this to yeast spotting.

Friday 21 February 2014

Chicken Kurma

It has been sunny but still cold, and I had planned to cycle after going to FIL's home today.
Last  days it has been cold but sunny , and when I go to FIL' place to take his food or shopping i stay there for a while and then go with my cycle for a longer ride.
And that was the plan today too, so I went to his place but I spend almost 2 hours there that I decided there is no more sun left and  rather cycle back home than going for a longer ride.
There are times when I say to Hans I never thought I would be so busy with FIL, Ok when ever I went there when MIL was still alive FIL was also there always but I was more busy with mom as you know we would talk about what we cooked, and what we are planning to cook tommorw, then recipes we saw and all the other gossips about the other family memberes.

But now it is not like that ,like today I was there and FIL was showing me all his old pics and talking about the past that I just sit there and listen and see the pics. Ok I have seen most of these old pics plenty of time, but he still shows me .
Today ofcourse I saw newer pics too including the pic of his home when he bought some 58 yrs ago and then i saw his grandfathers pic who was born in late 1800 etc...
It is unbelievable, FIL will become 87 in May but he still remember what happend in his youth even and I am like my god ask me some thing from my youth I have no idea :-)

You will find a variety of recipe for kurma/korma even in my blog you will see a vriety like this Moghul Chicken Korma which we love and for people who don't like that much spicy dish this moghul korma is perfect as it is a very mild one. And then there is this chicken korma with almonds  which is fabulous too so i guess you can have your pick for a korma recipe :-)

Chicken Kurma:

1 kg chicken ( Use chole chicken as the sauce taste better)
1/2 cup hot water
1.4 tsp turmeric powder
2 cinamon sticks
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp cardamom pods
Salt to taste
100 ml vegetable oil
350 gm onions sliced
2 tbsp garlic paste
2 tbsp ginger paste
1/2  tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp corriander powder
2 tsp chilli powder
2 tsp aniseed
200 gm tomatoes chopped
1 cup youghurt
hand full of corriander leaves
3 green chillies sliced in hhalf
1/4 cup cashw nuts
1/2 cup fresh coconut grated

1. Cut the chicken in pieces and cook the chicken in a pan with hot water, turmeric ,cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and salt for 10 minutes and keep it aside.

2. Heat the oil in a pan/wok and fry the sliced onions , stirring freequently . When they are fried well add the ginger and garlic paste.Mix with a little water corriander , turmeric , chilli poder and anise powder and add to the pan. Fry this ix well.

3. Add the chopped tomatoes. Fry well untill the oil seperates. Add the curd, corriander meaves, green chillie and the cooked chicken together with the water the chicken was cooked.
Cover with a lid and reduce the heat and simmer for futher 10 minutes or till the chicken is cooked.

4. In the mean time drind the cashews together with the coconut ( adding a bit of water while grinding if you need).
Add this paste into the curry when the chicken is fully cooked. Mix everything well .
You can serve the korma with rice or roties.


Wednesday 12 February 2014

Brioches à tête

Brioche  is a pastry of French origin that is akin to a highly enriched bread, and whose high egg and butter content give it a rich and tender crumb.
It is "light and slightly puffy, more or less fine, according to the proportion of butter and eggs"
 It has a dark, golden, and flaky crust, frequently accentuated by an egg wash applied after proofing
Brioche is considered a Viennoiserie, in that it is made in the same basic way as bread, but has the richer aspect of a pastry because of the extra addition of eggs, butter, liquid (milk, water, cream, and, sometimes, brandy) and occasionally a bit of sugar.
"Brioche is eaten with dessert or tea, but also has numerous uses in cuisine.
 Individual brioches serve as containers for various chopped and sauced stuffings, savoury or sweet, as warm appetizers or intermediate courses."

I have been wating t make Brioche for a while but then I didn't had the brioche pan. And two years back I did buy a big brioche pan and I still didn't make them and few months back I bought these smaller brioche saying to myself this will give me a extra push to make them.
And then while watching The Great British Bake Off , I got inspired to make them

It is a recipe from Paul Hollywood and he is one of the Judges in the programme and I must admit I do have two bread books from him which I love. And I have tried a couple of recipes from him and it always work perfect.

These brioche are so soft and yummy though they are not sweet, so we ate them for breakfast spreading butter and marmalade.
I gave 3 to my FIL and he ate them with Pate which I think also goes very well.

I did half the recipe which is give below as I think there is no use in doing the full recipe if you don't have ppl to eat them at home.
And now a days it is just Hans and I and ofcourse I do take my bakes to my FIL when I bake something . Nut how much can 3 ppl eat :-)

The stickiest dough with all the butter :-)


Ingridients : Plus You will need 16 brioche moulds

500g/1lb 2oz strong white flour
50g/1¾oz caster sugar
10g/⅓oz fast-acting yeast
7g/¼oz salt
140ml/5fl oz full-fat milk
6 free-range eggs, one egg beaten for egg wash
250g/9oz unsalted butter, softened
Preparation method
  1. Put the flour, sugar, yeast, salt, milk and five eggs into a free-standing food mixer and mix, for about five minutes, to a smooth dough. If mixing by hand, this will take about eight minutes.
  2. Add the butter to the dough and mix for a further five minutes in the mixer, or 10 minutes by hand. Put the dough into a bowl, cover and leave in the fridge overnight.
  3. The dough should now be stiff and easily shaped. Cut the dough into 50g/1¾oz pieces and divide 45g/1½oz for the brioche bodies and 5g/¼oz for the brioche heads.
  4. Using your hands, shape the dough pieces into balls. Put each large piece of dough into a brioche mould and push a smaller dough on top of each once. Leave the brioche in a warm place to rise for one hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. Brush the brioche with the egg wash and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden-brown.
  6. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Monday 10 February 2014

Salon du Chocolat Brussels / Chocolate Show in Brussels

Saturday we went to Salon Du Chocolat In Brussels.

I had received two Tickets from Apolina so I dragged Hans with me on saturday morning and went to Brussels.

I had been to Salon Du Chocolat in Lille in France couple of years back and I must say Hans and I agreed that it was much more better in Lille, .
Ok but then I think here in Belgium we are so much used to soo chocolate, pralines etc... that it is difficult to get impressed :-)

But I would say it was ok as we tasted chocolate and macarons etc there and it was a day out as after the chocolate fest we met up with Apolina and her family which was wonderful too.
So here I am sharing few pics from the chocolates.

Wednesday 5 February 2014

Soba Noodles With Mushrooms

These days I am trying to do  bit more vegetarian dishes as according to Hans I make too much chicken dishes and he thinks I should make more vegetarian dishes, not that I don't like making veggie dishes just that finidng something all of us love is another matter.

For example if I had made this dish when Shyama is home she would not like it as she is not a huge fan of mushroom there was a time when she didn't eat even a small piece of mushroom but that has changed she eats few but a dish with only mushroom well that is a big No for her.

And hans is opposite he loves mushroom in any form and I am nuteral,

You all know how much I love wagamama noodle dishes. And the idea of this dish came when I saw another wagamama dish in the book.
Theough it is not same, I just made the dish according to what we like at home and I must say both Hans and I loved it.
And the dish is so light , they you will be like did you had you lunch :-)

 Recipe: Serves 2

200 gm soba noodles
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 red chillie finley sliced
2 tbsp of grated ginger
250 gm of variety of mushroom slices ( You must use a variety that really gives the dish a wonderful taste)
1/2 tsp salt ( just take care as there is salt in the soup and in soysauce)
600 ml chicken broth ( I used my spicy chines broth , except I didn't add so much chillies whne i made the broth for this dish  - Recipe here )
4 spring onion sliced
2 sprigs of corriander

Cook the Noodles according to the instruction in the packet, drain , refresh under cool water and divide between 2 bowls.

Heat a wok over a medium heat intill completly hot and almost smoking and add the vegetable oil.
Add the sliced red chilli and grated ginger and stir fry for 20 seconds, then add all the mushrooms.
Season with salt and stir fry for 2 - 3 minutes.
Divide the mushrooms over the noodles in the 2 bowls, then laddle the soup . Scatter with spring onions and corriander leaves and enjoy the delicious soup.

Monday 3 February 2014

Cosmo Cupcakes

If I have time I try to make a cake for sunday afternoon coffee. And yesterday I did want to make a Sacher Torte as duaghter was home for weekend, but then even though we love chocolate, FIL dodn't like chocolate so making of Sachertorte was cancelled to my disapointment and I decided to make these cupecakes.

Ofcourse during the coffee time we were diivided again.

FIL doesn't like butter cream so he mostly removed all the buttercream before he ate it.
And Hans kept on saying that this time the butter cream was too sweet and that there was no vodka taste ( I do agree) I don't know why they say add vodka as vodka as no taste anyway, i will use next time another boose :-)

Shyama and I loved the cupcake and the frosting as we were like how can you not like frosting on a cupcake as that is the best part.
I had kept 2 cupcakes for niece in FIL fridge and I see that she loved them as today when I went there it was vanished :-)

Makes 12 cupcakes ( I got 8 )

Recipe from Lola's Cupcakes

180 gm sugar ( I added less )
1 1/2 tbsp orange juice
1 1/2 tbsp Grand Marnier ( I used Cointreau )
1/2 tbsp of baking powder
65 gm of butter ( roomtemperature)
2 eggs
75 ml milk
oinch of salt
2 tbsp of lime juice

For the Cosmo Butter cream:
125 gm butter in room temperature
500 gm powder sugar ( I only used 350 gm)
1 tbsp of vanilla extract
2 tbsp of vodka
3 tbsp of pomegranate syrup
Lime parts for decorating

Methid :
Make first the grandmarnier glaze.
Add 50 gm of the sugar and the orange juice in a pan and heat it till the sugar is fully dissolved and then add the Grand marnier. Keep them aside.

Preheat the oven to 180° c.
Sieve the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl.
Add the butter together with the sugar in a bowl and whisk them with a hand mixer or Kitche Aid till they are pale in colour.
Add the aggs one by one and whisking them.
Add  bit of flour then the milk and again flour and milk till all the flour is added.
Mix well.
Divide them into the cupcake tins and bake them for 20 - 25 minutes or till they are baked.
When the cupcakes are baked leave them to cool and then brush the tops of the cupcakes with the glaze which is kept aside.

Now make the buttercream.
 Sieve the powder sugar.
Add the butter into a bowl and whisk till fluffy with a hand mixer or KA then add the powder sugar , whisk and then add the vanilla extract, pomegranate syrup and vodka.
Continue whisking till you have a very fluffy butter cream.
Pipe them to the cooled cupcakes and decorate with the lime parts and enjoy.


Saturday 1 February 2014

Pasta With Bacon and Parsley

Usually I don't post on weekends , but this week has been super busy that I didn't even have time to come near my blog.
Shyama had planned to go to Egypt for 2 months ( not for holiday but from their university for learning there) she has been so much looking forward to that but it got cancelled again as the Professor and the University didn't want to send their students there as still there is trouble in Egypt.

So instead they will be going to different places in Europe to study.
So in February and March she will be off to university in Nederlands, then to Berlin, Leipzig and even to Brussels.
So thursday we went to pick her up from Leuven and she brought all her clothes back that I think there was clothes to wash for 10 washing machine, so the last 3 days the only thing I have been doing apart from cooking was washing, ironing, wasshing and again iroining and still it is not done.

Now enough about my life of doing laundry and to this delicious recipe.

We love this pasta and I have been making this few times these months. Could be also it is such a easy dish to make.

Serves : 2

100 gm bacon ( I buy from the shop in packest which are cut into cubes)
2 medium onions chopped
2 garlic cloves chopped fine
75 ml of white wine
1/4 heaped cup of parsely chopped fine.
Pepper and salt to taste
2 tbsp of olive oil
200 gm pasta
50 to 75 gm of freshly grated paremesan cheese.

Cook the paste according to the instruction on the packet.
In the mean time,Heat the pan with olive oil and fry the onions for few minutes till they are soft, add the bacon cubes and fry for futher few minutes. Add the garlic fry for 2 minutes then add the white while and boil for few minutes till all the wine is evaporated.
Add parsely , pepper and salt and add the cooked and drained pasta.
Keep a little bit of water were the pasta is cooked as I add couple of big tbsp of this water to the pasta dish so that it is not that dry.
Serve with generous sprinkling of paremesan cheese.