2015 in review

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 14,000 times in 2015. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 5 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

New England clam chowder soup

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup celery ribs chopped
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 3  potatoes washed, peeled and cubed
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1 tbs fresh dill or 1/2 tsp dried dill
  • 2 tbs all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cans (6-1/2 ounces each) chopped clams, undrained
  • Chopped parsley for garnish

Method:

  1. In a colander, drain clam juice from the cans and set aside.
  2.  In a medium size pan, sauté  celery and onion with butter until tender.
  3. Stir in the potatoes, clam juice, chicken broth, pepper and dill (if using fresh dill add it at the end). 
  4. Bring to a boil. 
  5. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
  6. In a small bowl, combine flour, heavy cream and milk until smooth. Gradually stir into soup. 
  7. Bring to a boil and cook for 1-2 minutes or until thickened.
  8. Stir in clams  and heat through (do not boil).
  9. Serve with crackers.

Roasted cauliflower salad

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Ingredients:

  • 1 small head of cauliflower 
  • 3 tbs vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper

For the tahini dressing:

  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tbs plain yogurt
  • 1 clove of garlic (crushed)
  • Salt, pepper, and cumin powder

For garnish:

  • Chopped parsley and pomegranate seeds.

Method: 

  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. In this salad you have two options, either you cut the cauliflower into big pieces, or leave it whole.
  3. Wash the cauliflower thoroughly, and soak it in water with 1 tbs of vinegar or salt for ten minutes
  4. Drain cauliflower and pat dry with a clean kitchen cloth.
  5. Brush cauliflower with vegetable oil and sprinkle it with salt and pepper
  6. Roast cauliflower until golden brown.
  7. In a medium sized bowl, add all dressing ingredients and mix well to form a silky and creamy sauce. Add more water if desired.
  8. In a salad plate, arrange cauliflower. Garnish with the parsley and pomegranate seeds and drizzle with tahini dressing.
  9. Enjoy!😊

Cinnamon roll wreath

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This incredibly delicious cinnamon roll wreath is the best breakfast on Christmas Day or any time of the year, with a cup of coffee or a glass of milk. When you bake it, your house will smell amazing all day long. I love the smell of baking❤️.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbs active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • 2 tbs plain yogurt (room temperature)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Filling:

  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp  ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup softened butter, divided

Egg wash:

  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 tsp heavy cream
  • 1/2 vanilla extract

Frosting optional:

  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tbs heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbs melted butter

Method:

  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, with the dough hook attached, add flour, sugar, yeast and salt. Mix to combine.
  2. Add yogurt, water and oil. Knead on medium speed until dough is smooth and does not stick to the walls of the bowl. If the dough still sticky , you could add some more flour.
  3.  Cover with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen cloth and keep the dough in an air-tight container until it doubles in size (approximately 30-45 minutes).
  4. Turn dough onto a floured surface.  Roll dough into a 16×12-in. rectangle.
  5.  Spread with the butter to within 1/2 in. of edges, sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon evenly.
  6. Roll up the dough into jelly-roll, starting with the long side, pinch seam to seal. 
  7. Transfer to parchment paper-lined round pan or 15x10x1-in. baking pan, seam side down. Shape into a ring,  pinch ends together to seal.
  8. Using kitchen scissors, start at outside edge and cut two-thirds of the way through the ring at 1-in. intervals. Separate sections slightly and twist to show filling. 
  9. Cover with kitchen towel, and let rise in a warm place until it doubles in size (about 1 hour).
  10.  Preheat oven to 400F.
  11. For egg wash, in a small bowl, whisk egg yolk, heavy cream and vanilla.until combined. Brush over wreath.
  12. Bake until golden brown. (about 25 minutes)
  13. For glaze, in a small bowl, mix icing sugar, heavy cream and vanilla and spread over wreath if desired.
  14. Enjoy! 😊

Brazilian cheese puffs خبز الجبنة البرازيلي 

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  Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1/3 vegetable oil
  • 1 egg room temperature 
  • 1 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan or Asiago cheese       

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Spray a mini muffins tin with non stick spray.
  3. In the blender add all ingredients. And blend until combine.
  4. Fill the cups of the muffins tin to the rim with the batter.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden color obtained.
  6. Let cheese puffs cool on a wire rack.
  7. It is better to serve them warm.
  8. Enjoy!😊

Chocolate crinkle cookies …بسكوت الشوكولاتة بالسكر الناعم

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This cookies are perfect for chocolate lover, rich in flavor and soft in texture … super delicious!
Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp instant coffee granules or espresso powder 
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup icing sugar for covering cookies

Method:

  1. Prepare all ingredients.
  2. In a big bowl add, granulated sugar, cocoa powder, coffee and oil. Stir with a wooden spoon until combine.
  3. With your hand mixer. Start adding eggs one at a time and mix.Do not overbeat.
  4. With adding of the last egg, add vanilla extract and mix.
  5. In another bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
  6. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and chill the dough for four hours or overnight.
  7. When it is time for baking, preheat oven to 350F. And line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  8. In a bowl add icing sugar.
  9.  With a small icecream scooper, get clumps of the chilled dough and roll them into 1-inch (2.5 cm) sized balls using your hands. 
  10. Roll the balls in the confectioner’s sugar and place on the cookie sheets (you should be able to get 12-16 on each sheet). 
  11. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
  12.  Allow to cool a minute or two on the sheets before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  13. Enjoy!😊

Tips:

  • Never overbeat cookie doughs. You are doing cookies not cake.
  • Adding the coffee granules is optional,  just to enhance the flavor of the chocolate.Do not overbake your cookies.                           
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Eggplant (aubergine) bruschetta 

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  Looking for an appetizer ( hors-d’oeuvre) to please your guests, try this mouth watering recipe.
Ingredients:

  • 1 big eggplant ( aubergine)
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 red bell pepper 
  • 2 garlic cloves mashed
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tbs pomegranate molasses
  • 1 tbs lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 2 tbs chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp dried mint
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • French baguette sliced
  • Salt, pepper and olive oil for brushing baguette.

Method:

  1. Turn on oven to broil.
  2. In an oven tray arrange eggplant, tomato and red bell pepper.
  3. Brush them with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt.
  4. Broil, turning ones until cooked and a layer of black broil signs obtained on top.
  5. Take the vegetable out of the oven and set aside to cool.
  6. Preheat oven to 400F. In another oven pan arrange baguette sliced brush them on both sides with olive oil an a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Toast them in the middle rack of the oven until golden in color.
  7. Peel off the skin of the vegetables.
  8. On the cutting board cut vegetable into small cubes.
  9. Put cubes in a bowl and add salt, pepper, pomegranate molasses, lemon juice, olive oil, smashed garlic, chopped parsley and mint. Stir to combine.
  10. Cool in the fridge for 1 hour before serving to enhance the flavor.
  11. In a serving plate arrange baguette slices.
  12. Add a tsp of the salsa on top of each slice.
  13. Decorate with chopped parsley and pomegranate seeds and Serve as an appetizer.
  14. You will get a lot of compliments😉

Enjoy!!