Archive for September, 2016

Honey Glazed Apple Tarts

September 14, 2016

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The trick to these apple tarts is thinly and evenly slicing the apples. That and the judicious use of cinnamon sugar above and below the apple slices. And using cooking spray on the apple slices before baking to seal in moisture. And brushing honey over the tarts when they are warm from the oven to make the tarts shiny. Ok, so there are a few tricks.

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Maple Banana Almond Macaroons

September 7, 2016

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The Banana Cookie recipe from Donna Hay’s new cookbook, Life in Balance: A Fresher Approach to Eating, sounds like its shouldn’t work; and the sight of the batter will not inspire more confidence. Have faith, though, and you will be rewarded with moist macaroons that taste intensely of banana and faintly of caramel and maple.

The ingredients are extremely simple: ground almonds, mashed banana, a small amount of maple syrup and a bit of cinnamon. When I mixed together all the ingredients, I had a thick batter rather than a stiff dough (kind of like the texture of matzoh ball batter before you refrigerate it). I was perplexed as to how to follow the instructions to “Roll 16 to 18 spoonfuls of the banana mixture into balls, Press them into the sugar-cinnamon mixture to coat all over, spacing the cookies an inch apart. . .” I ended up dropping spoonfuls of batter on a parchment lined baking sheet and sprinkling over the Turbinado sugar.

The resulting cookies were at their most delicious straight from the oven: crispy and chewy on the outside from the caramelized coat of raw sugar, and moist and soft on the inside like a macaroon. When the cookies completely cooled, the sugar on the outside melted a bit and the texture of the crust softened. I stored the cookies in an airtight container in the refrigerator and that seemed to restore a bit of crispness to the sugar coating.

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Roasted Rainbow Carrots with Pilpelchuma

September 1, 2016

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Have you had whole roasted carrots? They have a satisfying meatiness to them that makes them seem like more than just a side dish. Served with tahina sauce, they are even more filling. It doesn’t really matter whether or not you use regular carrots or rainbow carrots, but the rainbow carrots are definitely more visually thrilling, especially if you strew over thin slices of roasted lemon.

My sister-in-law introduced me to the roasted rainbow carrots with tahina sauce from The Oh She Glows Cookbook. She served it with a  salad of snap peas, radish and mint, which had a dressing with Aleppo pepper. The smoky heat of the Aleppo pepper went extremely well with the tahina sauce and carrots.

When I recreated the carrots at home, I served it with a tahina sauce flavored with smoked paprika. My sister had given me a seasoning mix from Trader Joe’s that replicates the flavor of the spice paste pilpelchuma. I used the pilpelchuma spice mix on the carrots instead of the cumin and coriander seeds of the Oh She Glows recipe.

The idea for roasting lemon slices on top of the carrots comes from this recipe from Bon Appetit for Harissa and Maple Roasted Carrots.

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