Posted in bake, Bread, British Cuisine, Oven, Quick and Easy, Side dishes, Snacks

White Bread Loaf

Who doesn’t like a slice of deliciously home made bread with their meal. After all you can eat it with almost anything.  Whether it is to accompany a cheese plate, dip into a curry or to make a simple sandwich.  This is such a quick and easy recipe, and pretty cheap to make which is good news for me with the steady increase on the cost of bread here.

Ingredients

Dry ingredients

400 g white flour

1 tsp salt

7 g packet dried yeast

Wet ingredients

284 ml buttermilk (normal milk with squeeze of lemon juice)

2 eggs

2 tbsps olive oil

Method

Grease your loaf tin(s).  This recipe makes one large loaf (tin size 900 g) or two small loaves (tin size 450 g).  The above photo is a small loaf tin.

Mix the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet ingredients in a different bowl.

Now slowly add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients to form a sticky dough.  You will need to add more flour to form a ball (as it will be quite sticky to begin with) then turn out onto a floured surface.  Knead the dough (adding more flour as necessary) to release the air.

If making small loaves, split the dough into two halves.  Form the dough into a sausage shape then place into the tin(s).

Place a piece of oiled cling film loosely over the top of the tin and leave it some where warm for about an hour to allow it to rise.

Preheat the oven to 190 c (Gas mark 4) about half an hour before you want to bake it.

Remove the cling film and place in the oven.  Bake it until golden and well risen (approx 45 – 55 mins depending on size of tins used).  You can test if the inside has cooked by slipping a sharp clean knife into the centre. If it comes out clean it is ready.

Remove from tin(s) onto a cooling rack and wait 10-15 minutes for it to cool before slicing.

 

Advertisements
Posted in Fish, Indian, Thai & Chinese Cuisine, Mediterranean, Oven, Sauces, Side dishes, Turkish Cuisine

Prawn Casserole with an Eastern Asian twist

On a cold wintery evening, there is nothing better to warm you up than a nice casserole.  And, what could be better than giving it a little bit of a Thai kick! This recipe is based on a typical Turkish hot meze (appetiser) dish known as Karides Güveç (Prawn Casserole) with a few extra touches of my own.

I used frozen prawns, but of course you can use fresh ones, just make sure you clean them carefully first.  I also use pepper paste instead of tomato puree as it does not give you the burns as tomato puree tends to give some people.

This recipe serves 2-4 depending on the size of serving dish.

Ingredients

250 g prawns (cleaned)

1 medium onion (finely chopped)

1 or 2 gloves of garlic (crushed)

1 red pepper & 1 green pepper (finely chopped)

A handful of mushrooms (cut in half then thinly sliced)

A handful of capers

8 cherry tomatoes (chopped) – 2 regular tomatoes can be used instead

1 tbsp of olive oil

1 tbsp of sesame oil

1 tbsp of oyster sauce

1-2 tbsps of pepper paste (or tomato puree)

1 tsp of hot sauce (optional)

A glass of white wine (optional)

500ml boiling water (for stock)

Salt and pepper and some oregano for seasoning

Grated cheese for garnishing (about one handful)

Method

Pre-heat the oven to 180°c. Put the olive oil and sesame oil in a frying pan (or wok) over a medium heat and fry the onions for 3-4 minutes.

Then add the peppers and garlic and continue frying.  Next add the mushrooms and the tomatoes. Now add the prawns.

Pour in a glass of white wine (optional).  In a jug, mix the pepper paste and boiling water with the oyster sauce and stir. Add this to the pan and stir.  Finally add the capers and the hot sauce and simmer for a few minutes. Season as preferred with salt and pepper and oregano.

Transfer the mixture into small casserole dishes and sprinkle with grated cheese.

Bake for about 10-15 minutes in the oven at 180c, then, serve with chunky bread for dipping.

Posted in American Cuisine, British Cuisine, Cheese, Quick and Easy, Side dishes, Snacks

Cheesy onion rings in breadcrumbs

What could be better than an onion ring? A cheesy onion ring!! I found this recipe on the Tasty app, and it was just as easy as they said.  The only tricky part was placing the cheese between the onion rings.  Also a good piece of advice is to have the window wide open if possible due to the fumes from the onion burning your eyes. Very quick to make but bear in mind there is an hour of freezing time involved, so better to prep in advance.

Ingredients

Medium to large sized onions (thickly sliced)

Slices of cheese

Flour

1-2 eggs (beaten)

Breadcrumbs

Oil (for frying)

**Measurements are not given as you will use as much as you need depending on how many you are making.

Method

First of all, you need to sort your sliced onions so that you have one ring that will fit inside another with a clear gap between them.

Now you need to cut your sliced cheese so that it fits between the two rings of onion.

IMG_0874

Next you need to place on a tray covered in baking paper and freeze for about an hour.

While you are waiting, set out a bowl of flour, a bowl with the beaten eggs and a bowl of breadcrumbs.

Once removed from the freezer, coat the ring first in flour, then in egg, and finally in the breadcrumbs.

IMG_0876

To cook, heat a pan of deep oil (I use vegetable or sunflower oil) over a high heat. Carefully place the rings into the oil using a slotted spoon.

IMG_0880

Allow to fry for a few minutes or until golden then remove onto some grease-proof paper.

Serve hot.

 

 

Posted in American Cuisine, British Cuisine, Indian, Thai & Chinese Cuisine, Mediterranean, Mexican, Quick and Easy, Side dishes, Stir fry, Vegetarian

Perfect Rice

20160609_141946_26950539333_o

Cooking rice can be rather hit or miss.  Either it can be bland, or puffy and over cooked, it isn’t as easy as you think.  But now I have a fool-proof recipe.  This recipe is based on 2 people so double amounts accordingly.

Ingredients

1 cup of rice (I use Jasmine)

2 cups of water

a pinch of salt

1 stock cube (chicken, meat or vegetable)

1 tbsp olive oil

Method

Put the olive oil, rice and salt in a flat bottom pan (as in the photo) and fry over a medium heat on the hob for about a minute stirring continuously.

Add the water and stir.

Cover pan with a lid and simmer over a low heat until all the water has evaporated (approx 20-25 minutes).

Serve hot.

**You can also add grated ginger or turmeric powder for added flavours.  Ginger goes nice with Chinese dishes, and the turmeric for Indian.

Left over rice can be chilled in the fridge over night and is then perfect for fried rice dishes.

 

Posted in American Cuisine, Cheese, Mexican, Oven, Quick and Easy, Side dishes, Snacks

Doritos / Nacho Cheesy Bake

IMG_0994

This is a quick and easy dish to prepare.  It can be a side for any Mexican meal, on its own with dips, you can build more layers around edges and fill centre with Chilli Con Carne… many possibilities.

Ingredients

1 packet of Doritos corn chips or Nachos

A load of grated cheese (as much as you like)

1 tsp hot pepper flakes (optional)

1 tsp mixed herbs (Thyme/Oregano)

Method

Preheat oven to 180°c.  In an oven-proof dish, put a layer of the crisps. Now sprinkle with grated cheese.  Repeat with another layer of crisps then cheese until whole packet of crisps has been used.  Finally cover with grated cheese.  Sprinke with herbs and chilli peppers as desired.

**If you plan to serve with Chilli Con Carne or a dip such as salsa in the centre, then after the first layer, place crisps around the edges to form a well in the centre.  You could also tower up in a pyramid shape too.

Place in the oven for 5 minutes or until cheese has melted and serve immediately.

 

 

Posted in Cheese, French, Potato Dishes, Side dishes, Vegetarian

Cheesy Potato Gratin Bake

IMG_0846

It is no secret that I love cheese, and dishes with potato and cheese are my favourite.  I recently found fresh parmesan cheese in a local supermarket (A101) at a really cheap price, which is generally unheard of here in Turkey.  This recipe includes step by step photos of how I prepared it.  Serves 2 – 4 people depending on portion size.

Ingredients

9 – 10 baby potatoes (in their skins)

Some slices of green and red pepper to decorate

A little grated parmesan to sprinkle over the top

Bowl of ice water (enough to cool potatoes)

Ingredients for the Cheese Sauce (Béchamel Sauce)

40 g butter

2 heaped tbsps flour

500 ml milk

2 tsps chopped chives

A handful of grated parmesan cheese

Salt and pepper (as required)

Method

Clean and place the baby potatoes in a large pan of boiling water and simmer for around 15-20 minutes.  Remove from the pan and place into the ice water, this helps the skins to peel off easily. Set aside while making the cheese sauce.

20160523_115200_26586638724_o

Method for cheese sauce

Place the butter in a saucepan over a low heat.  Once melted, stir in the flour allowing it to bubble.

20160523_112524_27192696455_o

Next you add the milk, a little at a time while continuously stirring (if you add all at once you risk the sauce becoming lumpy).

20160523_112704_27192708525_o

Add the chives, then over a medium heat bring to a boil stirring slowly until it thickens.  Turn off the heat and add the handful of cheese then salt and pepper to required taste.

20160523_112751_27192743375_o

Remove the skins from the potatoes using a flat edged knife, then slice and place to cover the bottom of an oven proof dish (which has had a little olive oil rubbed over to avoid sticking).  You do not need to pack tightly.

20160523_115546_26587786223_o 20160523_115514_27159387476_o

Once you have one layer, gently spoon over some of the cheese sauce.

20160523_120034_27192781685_o

Then repeat with another layer.  Potato and cheese sauce.  You should end up with about three layers.  Finally, de-seed and decorate with some red and green peppers, sprinkle a little parmesan cheese over the top, and bake in the oven at about 180°c for around 35 – 40 minutes, or until top is golden.

20160523_121817_26587831573_o 20160523_121627_27192788335_o

Serve immediately.

20160523_130820_27097041432_o

Posted in Condiments, No cooking involved, Quick and Easy, Side dishes, Vegetarian

Garlic Butter

IMG_0782

Garlic butter can add a magical touch to many dishes.  Rub it along a corn-on-the-cob, or stick some in a jacket potato.  Make garlic bread to have on the side of many main courses or even with a cheese plate in the evening, the options are endless.  I have not included strict quantities as you can make as little or as much as you like.  I generally make enough to keep in a small pot in the fridge, ready to use.

Ingredients

Soft butter (approx 50-70 g)

2-3 cloves of garlic (crushed)

Salt and pepper

Thyme or oregano

Method

Mix all the ingredients together, place in a tub and keep in the fridge.