Sunday, January 18, 2015

Cauliflower Pea Soup

In winter months when cold bitter temperatures get under our skin a good soup comes to rescue. It warms you up from inside out.
I'm a huge fan of soup. I keep telling myself I should make it more often. I have some mushrooms in the fridge and so in fact right after I finish writing this blog post I'm going to put the apron on and head over to the kitchen and make mushroom soup.

Today I want to share with you a really easy and tasty recipe for Cauliflower and Pea Soup.

Cauliflower and Pea Soup ( servings 6-8)

1 Cauliflower head, washed and separated into small florets
3 large carrots, peeled and sliced/chopped
2 celery sticks, chopped
1medium onion, chopped finely
2 medium size potatoes, peeled and cubed
2cups fresh or frozen peas
1tbl butter
1tbl olive oil
3tbl flour
1tsp red paprika
salt and a pepper to season
1/8tsp freshly zested nutmeg
4cup chicken stock + 3 cups water or vegetable stock
1tsp soy sauce(optional)

Peel, chop, slice, prepare all the vegetables.
In a medium size pot, heat oil and melt butter, add onions and celery, cook for couple minutes add carrots. Season with salt and pepper, cook on medium heat, for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat let cool for 1 minute, stir in 1tsp red paprika.

Add potatoes, cauliflower, dust flour on top. Stir well. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring well
Then add warm chicken stock and water, or depending how thick or thin you want your soup, you can ad more liquid. Taste, season with salt and pepper.
Bring to simmer and cook until vegetables are almost cooked through.
Add peas, and simmer for additional 5 minutes or so.
Stir in soy sauce. Serve.
Can be made ahead and stored in the fridge for up to 4 days.

More Delicious Cauliflower Recipes

Cauliflower Asparagus Semolina Cakes
Roasted Cauliflower Casserole
Cauliflower Asparagus Tart
Cauliflower Cheese Souffle
Caramelized Onion Pizza with Roasted Cauliflower

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Snowflake Cake Roll

My snowflake cake roll took 2 takes.
My first try at  first was successful and then it wasn't. I forgot about the color mixing guidelines until I was about to add blue to yellow batter. Of course, it turned green. I used egg yolks in the batter and natural yellow color reacted with blue. There you have it, it turned green. I still baked the roll just to see what it would look like but at the end I tossed it. Though it still  looked pretty, green is not blue. I wanted blue with white snowflake. Why do I have to be so stubborn! So I washed the bowls, spatulas, baking sheet and started again. This time I employed egg whites only and the results was so much better. Blue was actually blue.
Cake itself is very light in texture and can be made 2-3 days ahead stored in the fridge. I hope you like it.


Prepare the snowflake pattern, depending on the baking pan you have adjust it to the size. Cut a parchment paper and lay it on top of the template. Set aside.

1egg white
1/4cup powdered sugar
1/3cup all purpose flour
pinch of salt
1/4tsp vanilla extract
1/2tbl water, to thin the batter a little so it is easier to pipe

Beat egg white with a pinch of salt in a clean bowl, until foamy, gradually add powdered sugar. Gradually fold in the flour. Sift the flour over meringue. Fold in water and vanilla. Fill the piping bag with the batter. Pipe the snowflakes onto the prepare parchment paper. Use the template underneath to guide you, pipe snowflakes. Once you pipe all the snowflakes, put the parchment paper with snowflakes into the freezer, for 30 minutes. Best to have it on a cutting board for support.

9 egg whites, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1tsp vanilla extract
1tsp freshly squeezed and strained lemon juice
3/4 cup cake flour
pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350F.
Beat egg whites with a pinch of salt, until foamy, gradually add granulated sugar, beat until stiff peaks are formed, beat in vanilla and lemon juice.
Gradually add flour and fold it into the meringue. Sift flour onto the meringue and fold in.
Once incorporated, add sky blue food coloring(I used Americolor Brand - link posted below, under TOOLS)
Take snowflake layer out of the freezer, transfer it on to the baking sheet. Spray the sides of the baking pan with non-stick spray, or brush with melted butter.
Pour batter over prepared jelly roll baking pan(18x13inch) lined with parchment paper with piped snowflakes.
Bake at 350F, for 8-12 minutes, watch it carefully so it doesn't burn.
Turn the cake on a wax paper dusted with powdered sugar.
Peel of the parchment paper from the cake. As you pull the paper off you will see the snowflake pattern in the cake. So pretty!
Now lay another piece of wax paper on the top. Flip the whole thing so snowflake pattern is facing down, peel the top paper.
Roll the cake with the bottom parchments still attached.
Wrap it into the a clean kitchen towel. Let cool completely.

1cup heavy cream, room temperature
1 1/2 cups non fat Greek Yogurt, plain, room temperature
1 to 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2tsp vanilla extract
2tsp granulated gelatin
3tbl cold water
1 1/2 cup washed and diced fresh strawberries, or use raspberries/diced kiwi fruit

Stir gelatin and 3tbl cold water. Let bloom for 5 minutes. Microwave on high for 5 seconds, until dissolved it shouldn't take too long, so be careful not to let gelatin get too hot. Cool gelatin to room temperature, stirring. Beat heavy cream until soft peaks are formed, gradually add sugar, then slowly while still beating pour in dissolved gelatin. Beat until stiff. Fold in yogurt, add vanilla extract.
Fill the cake. Unroll the cake, carefully peel off the wax paper Spread creamy filling on the top. Spread strawberries onto the filling. Roll the cake. If there is some filling coming out, it's okay, just spoon it and please eat it. It's so very good, it would be a sin to throw it out. Wrap the roll into a wax paper. Chill overnight. Serve. Cake can be made up 2 -3 days ahead. Store in the fridge, covered.


Baking Sheet - I love using USA pan brand and that is what I used to make this beautiful cake roll.
Offset  Spatula  - to spread batter onto the baking sheet it is best to use a offset spatula. I have several of them and use them frequently, when working with cake batter, chocolate, filling a cake with buttercream, and they work great for quick ice a cake techniques.
Snowflake Template
Disposable Piping Bags
Sky Blue Food Coloring
Parchment Paper
Spatula for folding/mixing
Mixing Bowls

This cake is low fat and low sugar, if you'd like to make it sweeter you can.  Simply add more powdered sugar to the filling. I love it because it is refreshing and can be made few days ahead.

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