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almonds

Triple Cheese 'Moozberry' Cheesecake ... Mooz Formaggio, local artisan cheese at its best“Dessert without cheese is like a beauty with only one eye”
Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

Triple Cheese Moozberry Cheesecake must be one of the best cheesecakes I have made. Ever. And I have made many over the years, almost all with homemade quark, and they’ve all been special. Yet this one turned out to be even better. It baked up perfectly, has a mix of 3 soft cheeses in it, and the most delicious topping of balsamic cherries infused with rosemary and vanilla. If it wasn’t good enough, I topped it with green almonds which are also in season these days. You can imagine, well almost, how wonderful this might have been.Cherries

Green almonds

Triple Cheese 'Moozberry' Cheesecake And of course  I need to explain why it’s called a Triple Cheese Moozberry Cheesecake. Well the guys from Mooz Formaggio were nice enough to send me a huge lot of their cheese range to sample.  Their range has been developed and designed by a fourth generation Italian cheesemaker. Delightfully enough, the Mooz folk are manufacturing all their cheese here locally and it matches up to admirably to imported cheese available.Mooz CheeseFor those who do know me, dairy is my weakness, and fresh cheese even more. For those who don’t know me, well now you do!! Fresh cheese has long held me fascinated. That it is not processed, that is has a million uses other than just eating out of a bowl or tub, that it is healthy as well as healthier than imported/processed cheese are huge pluses for me. I’ve explored and made fresh cheese – mascarpone, ricotta, quark, cottage cheese for really long, and in turn done several desserts with them.Cherries & green almondsSavoury stuff too, but what I really do enjoy is desserts using unripened f soft cheese. When I make quark myself, I just chuck it into a concoction, play around a little and then bake. When Mooz showed up, it was a new level of luxury. Imagine, I didn’t have to make my own cheese, so the mind went into overdrive. The plan was for a mascarpone galette with cherries. A nice batch of cherries recently pitted and frozen seemed just right for a wholegrain galette.Triple Cheese 'Moozberry' Cheesecake The mind is a strange place when creative ideas get buzzing. Just looking at the little tubs suddenly got me thinking further, and I knew it had to be a cheesecake. Time to experiment. I grabbed the ricotta, quark and cream cheese and turned the oven on. The recipe is simple, an experiment on a quark cheesecake I make often. This time I added zest of a Bitter Citron Lemon that Sanjeeta mailed me from Chennai, and also zest from a lime from the garden. They say lime zest cuts out any eggy aromas from a cake, and ‘they’ weren’t wrong!Triple Cheese 'Moozberry' Cheesecake Must admit to a million butterflies in my tummy as the cheesecake baked. I had my fingers crossed on this one. How I wished it would turn out well. It baked up beautifully, water bath and all, the tin size worked just perfect too, no cracks on top, didn’t sink like a crater. I was thrilled. An overnight rest in the fridge and I was up early next morning to do a topping, cherries of course. I infused them with some fresh rosemary, a few sprigs that have turned into a plant ex Switzerland, some bitter citron zest from down south, and some aged balsamic and brown sugar.

Cherries and rosemaryDarned delicious if I may say so myself, and fabulous pairing with cheesecake. The cheesecake itself darned delicious too, and got a standing ovation. You should must try making it. To cut the calories, or maybe extra work, or both, you can even go crust-less. Maybe bake mini cheesecakes.

Triple Cheese 'Moozberry' Cheesecake The entire line from Mooz is really really good, including the sour cream. So many varieties, such great flavour. You are literally spoilt for choice as far as sour cream goes. Lemon, peri peri, jalapeno, chipotle {one of our favourites}, yes they have them all. I did a quick smoked chicken farelle with the chipotle sour cream, flavoured with loads of garlic, with fresh lime and rosemary from the garden. Turned out great. Even crumbed chicken with sour cream is yum!! And nachos of course!!Mooz Pasta Also really good  are the Chili Toasty and Plain Toasty, generous stringy cheese slices for grilled sandwiches. Quite addictive and great quality, your grilled toast might never be the same again. The Chili Toasty especially has a great chili flavour and kick. The only cheese that disappointed was the mozzarella which had a slight bitter aftertaste. Not sure why that happened as all the cheese was perfectly stored and from the same batch.Triple Cheese 'Moozberry' Cheesecake

 

Baking | Triple Cheese 'Moozberry' Cheesecake... local artisan cheese at its best!
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Triple Cheese Moozberry Cheesecake must be one of the best cheesecakes I have made. It baked up perfectly, has a mix of 3 soft cheeses in it, and the most delicious topping of balsamic cherries infused with rosemary and vanilla. If it wasn't good enough, I topped it with green almonds which are also in season these days. The best thing is that this uses locally produced artisan cheese from Mooz.
Servings Prep Time
6-8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Servings Prep Time
6-8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Baking | Triple Cheese 'Moozberry' Cheesecake... local artisan cheese at its best!
BigOven - Save recipe or add to grocery list
Yum
Print Recipe
Triple Cheese Moozberry Cheesecake must be one of the best cheesecakes I have made. It baked up perfectly, has a mix of 3 soft cheeses in it, and the most delicious topping of balsamic cherries infused with rosemary and vanilla. If it wasn't good enough, I topped it with green almonds which are also in season these days. The best thing is that this uses locally produced artisan cheese from Mooz.
Servings Prep Time
6-8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Servings Prep Time
6-8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour
Ingredients
Crust
Balsamic Rosemary Infused Cherries
Servings: people
Instructions
Crust
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line the base of an 8″ loose bottomed tin with parchment, and lightly grease sides..
  2. Run the biscuits, chilled butter and whole almonds in food processor until ground and a moist crumb forms. {Thermomix: Speed 8, 10 seconds, repeat once}
  3. Turn into the baking tin and press the crumbs into the base, building up the sides a bit if desired. Chill while you preheat the oven, and make the filling.
Filling
  1. Place the quark, ricotta, cream cheese, egg yolks, cornflour, 40g sugar,vanilla, cream and lime zest if using into the bowl of your food processor and run on medium speed till smooth. {Thermomix: Speed 6, 10 seconds}
  2. Beat the whites with the remaining 90g sugar to firm peaks. Gently fold this through the quark cheese mixture and pour over the biscuit base.
  3. Bake at 200C for 15 minutes, and then at 180C for about 45 minutes until firm.
  4. Allow to cool completely in oven, leaving the door ajar.
  5. Cover well and chill before serving, preferably overnight. Serve topped with Balsamic Rosemary Infused Cherries.
Balsamic Rosemary Infused Cherries
  1. Place all ingredients in heavy bottom non reactive pan and simmer gently for 5-7 minutes, until cherries soften. Taste and adjust sweetness if required.
  2. Remove cherries to a bowl, and reduce syrup in pan until nice an thick. Strain over reserved cherries, discarding the vanilla bean and rosemary. Chill completely before topping cheesecake.
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Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake “I’ll be back before you can say Blueberry pie.”
Bruce Willis {Pulp Fiction}

Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake, a tray that happened just because the galette failed. A friend recently got me some blueberries and they were a source  of constant inspiration. The pretty little deep blue berries had me fascinated. All day long I thought of how best to use them. Muffins, galettes, cheesecake, trifle, ice cream and so much more. Finally settled for a wholewheat galette!

Blueberries, food styling, rawWhat I ended up with was obviously far from it. While I was really pleased with the galette when it went into the oven, ten minutes later, I stared at a virtual meltdown. Disaster had struck. Like the rivers of Babylon, how the dough spread. The pastry spread to make a base, while everything else merrily leveled above it. Heartbroken, I left the disaster to bake, slamming the oven door shut in horror.Blueberries 3 1000I let it be for quite a bit, sitting to cool in the oven because I was heartbroken. Nothing much I could do I figured, and set out to make a trifle. Upcycle as Ruchira had cleverly suggested at my overbaked batch of Wholegrain Butterscotch Blondies. It made the most fab UpcycledButterscotch Blondie Pudding not so long ago. Clearly the more often I bake, the higher the chances of upcycling! Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake Yet one look at the now settled tray seemed to suggest that all wasn’t lost. I stamped out shapes to salvage a few decent round cut outs while happy hungry mouths nibbled the left over edges away. No chance for trifles!! Turned out pretty delicious, and hence the Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake was born. I’ve scaled the ingredients to match the tray bake, just the base has been reduced, while the rest remains pretty much the same. I did a test run with strawberries yesterday and that came out just as good too!

Recipe: Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake your picture

Summary: Moist, full of wholesome almond and fruit flavour, here’s a tray bake that you might enjoy. The Blueberry Frangipane Wholegrain Tray Bake is a quick and fuss free bake for times when berries are in plenty. Makes one 8″ X 8″ tray.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Ingredients:

  • Wholewheat biscuit base
  • 110g wholewheat flour
  • 60g unsalted butter, chilled, chopped
  • 15g brown sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 10ml apple cider vinegar
  • 40-50ml water
  • Frangipane
  • 75g butter
  • 75g brown sugar
  • 75g almond meal
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 vanilla bean scraped
  • 150g Blueberries {or strawberries, cherries, peaches etc}
  • Almond flakes for garnishing

Method:

  1. Wholewheat biscuit base
  2. Place wholewheat flour, butter, brown sugar and salt in bowl of food processor and process briefly until you have a coarse mix. The butter should be pea sized.
  3. Add the vinegar and process briefly, then gently pour in enough water until it just about begins to come together when you pinch it between your fingertips. Don’t over work, else the pastry will become tough.
  4. Line the base of an 8″ X 8″ baking tin {or 7″ X 11″} with parchment paper. Lightly grease sides.
  5. Press the biscuit it evenly to line the bottom.
  6. Chill for 20 minutes while you preheat the oven, and make the frangipane.
  7. Frangipane
  8. Place butter, almond meal and brown sugar in same bowl of food processor and blend to mix.
  9. Add remaining ingredients and briefly process to mix. { Can be stirred together in a big bowl too.}
  10. Assemble
  11. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  12. Spread the frangipane over the chilled biscuit base, and scatter the blueberries over.
  13. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the frangipane feels set.
  14. Allow to cool for 30 minutes, then cut into squares or bars.
  15. Serve with unsweetened cream and extra berries if desired.

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Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond Biscotti“So much chocolate, so little time.”

Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond Biscotti … chocolate yet again because it was a hurried baking batch. Same story, different biscotti. With the better half set to travel and a last minute change in plans, I had little to almost no time to bake. I hurriedly threw these together this morning adapted from a recipe from Smitten Kitchen. One stop over at Deb’s blog, or leafing through her cookbook, leaves you inspired to hit baking mode.

Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond BiscottiFor me chocolate is one of the easiest and most forgiving mediums to bake with. With my hashtag #makehalfyourgrainswhole, I can blindly experiment, knowing in the end we’ll have something edible, if not delicious. Going the whole food way has been possibly one of the most satisfying journeys of my life, if not the most exciting. Makes me want to constantly experiment, try new things. That makes life a lot less mundane too. This biscotti did just that giving me room to change things around.Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond BiscottiHazelnuts out. Almonds in. I added butter since I often find biscotti a little ‘skinny’ or dry. Personal choice definitely but a delicious end nevertheless. I also added dark couverture chocolate just because I like cookies that have deep, chocolaty flavour. Cocoa powder often is not enough to get you the indulgent edge. Since I threw these together with limited time on hand, I cut the slices quite thick. Taking advice from Ruchira, next time I will freeze them a bit to try and get thinner biscotti. That is my dream and hopefully I get there one day. Biscotti with plain flour behaves a lot easier for thin slices, is also easier to handle. Thick chunky biscotti is a healthy trade off I guess!!

Recipe: Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond Biscotti your picture

Summary: Comfort cookies with deep chocolaty flavour, and toasted almonds just hitting the right notes. Wholegrain Dark Chocolate Almond Biscotti might just be the answer for comfort food; never mind what the question is!!

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Ingredients:

  • 75g almonds, toasted, roughly chopped
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 75g dark chocolate
  • 1 tbsp espresso powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 150g wholewheat flour
  • 60g all purpose flour
  • 40g almond meal
  • 30g good quality cocoa powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 200g brown sugar

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Line a heavy baking tray with parchment.
  2. Melt the butter and chocolate in the microwave, 1 min. Stir until smooth, then stir in espresso powder.
  3. In a large bowl stir together wholewheat flour, plain flour, almond meal, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and chopped almonds.
  4. Place the egg and vanilla extract in bowl of stand mixer. Whisk on high speed for 15 seconds, then add melted chocolate mix and stir on low speed for 15 seconds to combine.
  5. Add the dry mix and run mixer for 20-30 seconds on slow speed to combine. Don’t over work.
  6. Turn out onto work surface and divide into 2. Form into 2 long flat logs about 8-10″ long {or as desired}
  7. Transfer to prepared baking sheet, brush gently with water, and sprinkle over with brown sugar.
  8. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until firm to touch.
  9. Remove tray from oven, allow to cool for 5-10 minutes, then slice at an angle as thin as you like with a good sharp serrated knife.
  10. Reduce oven temperature to 150C. Return the sliced cookies back to the tray, cut side down {and up of course!} and bake for a further 20-25 minutes until crisp and dry.
  11. Cool completely on racks before storing.

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The Rabid Baker, The Times of India

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