Posts Tagged ‘tessa kiros’

I made these delicious cardamom and cinnamon owl rolls from a recipe on Joanna’s blog.

They’re light, briochey and very cute.  The original post is here, and I promised Jo that I’d put some photos up to try and explain the unusual shaping instructions.

Work each piece of dough into a rectangle, then smear it with butter and sprinkle over the combined cinnamon and sugar (the cardamom is mixed into the dough itself).  Roll it up tightly longways, so that you get a long thin roll, rather than a short, fat one.

Cut each log into triangles as shown…

Stand each little pyramid on its base…

…and give it a good squish to flatten it out…

Most of the rolls ended up looking like cute little owls’  heads…

…but this one reminded me of a curled up echidna!

The combination of spices gives the rolls a subtle, exotic flavour and the use of plain flour results in a soft, almost delicate crumb.  Pete and Big Boy loved these!

Edit: for those unfamiliar with the echidna, it’s an unusual Australian native, one of only two monotremes (mammals that lay eggs rather than birthing live young, the other being the platypus).  It’s an Aussie icon, and its image graces our 5c coin.  Do take a look at the Wikipedia article – the echidna has some interesting physical characteristics (not the least of which is a four-headed reproductive organ!).

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Sydney’s weather has eased slightly, and I’ve leapt at the opportunity to turn the oven on!

This kamut, potato and beer bread comes from Tessa Kiros’ Falling Cloudberries.   The loaf was soft and slightly cakey,  with a pronounced but not unpleasant bitterness from the Guinness.  It was very tasty smothered with Pete’s homemade butter, and topped with fresh tomato and sheep’s milk cheese.

The bread only used 60ml of stout, and I was loathe to waste the rest of the can, so I made a Chocolate Guinness Cake (topping up the shortfall in beer with 60ml of water).  It was moist, dark and very grown-up, and baked particularly well in my extra-large bundt pan.

Some more experiments with choux pastry – this time chocolate fondant covered éclairs and mini Paris-Brest wheels…

Finally, a comment left by Deb reminded me that I had half a carton of buttermilk in the fridge that needed using up.  I baked an old standby, the Buttermilk and Almond Cake, and dressed it up with a generous swirl of Pete’s freshly made white nectarine and raspberry conserve.

Pete, who was mildly miffed at only getting three slices of Guinness cake, declared that this one was all his…

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This wonderful recipe comes from Tessa Kiros’ gorgeous cookbook, Apples for Jam.  Despite the fact that it’s printed in a faint font and therefore hard to read, it’s a very  appealing book visually, and I was instantly drawn to the cover, with its embossed overlay of flowers.

This is the first recipe we’ve tried from the book, and it was an absolute winner – messy, but delicious, and very easy to make.  It fed three of us very well, with Small Man dining on a plate of beef tortellini – he’s not much of a ricotta fan at the best of times..

  • 500g fresh ricotta
  • 100g plain flour
  • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • pinch of Malden salt

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and have your sauce ready to go, as the gnocchi need to be eaten as soon as they’re cooked.  We served ours with Pete’s tomato sauce, garnished with a dollop of homemade pesto.

2. In a large mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix gently with a wooden or silicone spoon.  You might need to get a clean hand in to gingerly encourage it to come together.  Don’t overwork the dough.

3. With lightly floured hands (you want to add as little flour as possible, or the gnocchi will be tough), shape the dough into thin logs on a large sheet of parchment paper.  This is messy work!

4. With a sharp knife, cut the logs into small dumplings, and drop them into the boiling water.  Allow them to cook for about 45 seconds to a minute, or until they float to the surface.   Scoop them out with a slotted spoon, and serve immediately with the sauce and a dusting of grated parmesan.

Slicing up the logs was a bit fiddly, and I suspect you could simply drop spoonfuls of the dough into the boiling water, providing you worked quickly enough.

However you decide to make them, do try this recipe – it’s really very simple and the results are surprisingly tasty!

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