Sunday, September 25, 2011

Scones


There was nothing more wonderful than waking up in the morning and smelling a hot baking treat being removed from the oven...and none more delicous than the simple scone!  Unlike a lot of people we didn't eat it with cream and strawberry jam...instead we had it with butter and dulce de leche or one of my other favourties was butter and lashing of honey!  YUUUUM!!  Sometimes it's the classic, simple recipes which bring the most delight!

Scones













  • 2 cups self raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 60g of butter (cut into pieces)
  • 2/3 to 3/4 cup of milk


Stir together dry ingredients.  With a fork mix in the butter so the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.

Make a well in the centre of dry mixture and milk (2/3) all at once and stir through (if the mixture is too dry and doesn't unite keep adding milk slowly.  With floured hands shape the dough into a ball.  Knead lightly.

Roll the dough to 1cm thickness.  Use a cutter to punch out the scones and place on an ungreased baking tray.  Bake at 230 degrees for 10-12mins or until golden.  Take out of the oven, choose your favourite topping - and try not to eat them all!!

Cocinar, comer y ser feliz!
Leticia

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Factura con chocolate y Danish de manzana - Chocolate Pastries and Apple Danish

I recently posted how to make medialunas and vigilantes.  Lot's of people wrote in asking for the 'chocolate' version they have eaten when they have been in Argentina...  So here it is!  I've also added the recipe for Apple danish which is one of the classic pastries you will also find on Argentine dessert menus!

Follow the same instructions for making the pastry that is in this post.

Facturas de Chocolate



Roll out the dough.  Cut into a rectangle, about 3mm thick.  Take a bar of chocolate and place in the centre of the rectangle.  Make sure no part of the chocolate is sitting outside of the dough (leave a good 3mm on all sides). Brush dough on the inside with melted butter.  Roll the chocolate bar 2 to 3 times and cut any left over dough and set aside.  Brush the top with melted butter and sprinkle some sugar on top.  Bake in an oven on high heat (about 200 degrees) for 20mins or until pastry is cooked.  Take out of the oven and let it cool...then you can consume all the chocolatey goodness!!!

Apple Danish



Pastry:
Follow the same instructions for making the pastry that is in this post.

To cook apple for danish:
Coat the pan with butter. Placed sliced, peeled apples in the pan and cook until crisp.


Cut the pastry into a rectangle 3mm thick.  Cut into strips and then into squares 8x8cm.

Take a square.  Cut diagonally from all the corners to the centre - do not cut all the way to the centre - leave a diameter of 1cm or so.  Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar.  Take a cooked green apple, cut into strips.  Place in the centre.  Take the ends and bring to the centre joining in the middle.  Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar again.  Place one more strip of apple in the centre.

Bake in an oven on high heat (about 200 degrees) for 20mins or until pastry is cooked.  Take out of the oven and let it cool...then consume with abandon!

Cocinar, comer and ser feliz!
Leticia



Monday, September 12, 2011

Pastel de Verano - Summer Pie


This baked dish is one of my favourites to cook for my vegetarian friends.  Spinach is a very important ingredient in Argentine cuisine and this particular pie brings out the essence of the spinach flavour in a very delicious casing!

Summer Pie


















  • 2 3/4 cups plain flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 50g of butter
  • 10 tablespoons cold water
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
  • 250g of cooked spinach
  • 6 hard boiled eggs

Sift together flour and salt.  Rub in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Add water and teaspoon by teaspoon and mix to a smooth dough (if more water is needed, add gradually).

Knead lightly, wrap in greaseproof paper and chill for about 30mins.  Take 2/3, roll out and line a 23cm springform tin.  Prick well with a fork, chill for 15-20mins.

Bake in a hot oven (200 degrees) for 10mins only.  For the filling, beat together eggs, milk, nutmeg, salt and pepper to taste, mix in the spinach.  Shell the hard boiled eggs.

Pour half the filling into the pastry, arrange the eggs around the edge, add the rest of the filling.  Roll out the remaining pastry, moisten the edges and put on top of the filling.

Press the edges to seal, brush over with beaten egg.  Return to the oven and bake for 25-30mins.  Once the pastry is golden remove from the oven.  Let it cool and remove from the springform tin.  Let it cool and then dig in!

Cocinar, comer y ser feliz!
Leticia

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Torta Rustica - Rustic Tart

Torta Rustica continues our baking journey!  It is a golden pastry crust which envelopes layers of vegetables, cheeses and ham.  For a nice vegetarian version you can substitute the ham for cooked slices of eggplant.

Torta Rustica


















  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 large red peppers, peeled, sliced into wide strips
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 250 grams of cooked chopped spinach
  • 1/4 teaspoon of grated nutmeg
  • salt to taste
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh breadcrumbs
  • 30g freshly grated cheese
  • Ready made puff pastry
  • 250g of cheese, sliced thinly
  • 250g ham, sliced thinly
  • Egg wash, made from egg yolk beaten with 2 teaspoons water

Omelettes:
  • 5 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated cheese
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
Heat oil and butter in a large saute pan, add pepper strips, saute until just tender.  Remove from the pan and set aside.  Add onion and garlic to the pan, cook 2- mins.  Squeeze all the moisture from the spinach and add to the pan, cook for approx. 5 mins, add nutmeg and salt and pepper to taste.  Put the mixture in bowl, stir in egg, breadcrumbs and 3og of cheese, set aside to cool.

To make the omelette - beat eggs with three tablespoons of cheese to combine.  Heat half the butter in 20-22cm saute pan and make a flat omelette with remaining butter and eggs place on a plate, set aside to cool/

While the omelette and spinach are cooling, prepare pastry.  Take out pastry sheet and cut a 35cm diameter, put the rest to the side.  Line a shallow missing bowl (with approx. 30cm diameter) with plastic wrap.  Place pastry circle in the bowl, carefully pat against the sides.  Pre-heat the oven to 190 degrees.

When all the ingredients have cooled, begin to layer the torta.  Place one omelette in the base of the on top of the pastry.  Spread with half spinach, then half cheese, then half ham and all the red peppers.  Repeat layering in reverse, using the remaining ham, cheese, spinach, finish with other omelette.

Cut out remaining pastry in a circle large enough to cover filling.  Place on top of the filling, brush with egg wash around the edges.  Fold over the extra dough from larger circle (which will be the top crust) and make sure edges are tightly sealed.  Carefully invert onto baking sheet, remove bowl and plastic wrap.  Pinch up bottom of pastry between thumb and forefinger.  Glaze with egg wash.

Bake in the oven for approx, one hour or until crust is a deep golden.  Remove from the oven and let it settle for 20mins.

Then cut into wedges and enjoy!

Cocinar, comer  y ser feliz!
Leticia



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