Easy peasy pizza


Friday night is usually pizza night at our place or sometimes during the week if dinner needs to be easily prepared. 

This pizza dough is easy and takes only a few minutes to throw everything into the mixer with the dough hook , ten minutes to mix, a half hour to rise in a warm place (or longer if you prepare well in advance) and 7 mins in a hot oven.

Homemade dough beats pizza takeaway hands down and and family can get in on the act and roll their own bases and put on whatever toppings they like.

We are ham and cheese and pepperoni and mushroom fans with buffalo mozzarella sometimes and some Italian herbs, basically whatever we have in the fridge.

Dough recipe 

500g bakers flour

8 g dried yeast

Teaspoon salt

340ml warm water

1.5 tablespoons olive oil

Method

Throw it all into a mixer with a dough hook and mix on low to medium speed for ten mins until dough is elastic and smooth.

Remove the hook and leave the dough in the bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp teatowel and let it sit in a warm spot if u can for at least a half hour. Maybe on a chair by a sunny window, or near the heater/fire.

Once the dough has doubled in size, turn out onto a floured counter top and knock it back with your fists, shape and divide into four or five smaller pieces, depending how big you want your pizza. 

Roll out with a rolling pin, put onto a tray ( I like to give the tray a little spray with oil to stop pizza sticking), top with sauce and whatever yummy toppings you like and pop into the oven for about 7 or 8 minutes (depends on thickness of base).

Enjoy! My kids have the leftovers for breakfast the next day.  đŸ˜€
Xxx

Aoife

Quick ‘n’ tasty noodle soup


It’s official. It’s winter in Sydney and time to start making comforting soups and casseroles and time to dust off the slow cooker. 

This recipe is far from slow. It’s super fast and easy and thoroughly delicious and warmingly satisfying.

Few ingredients for maximum value. There’s nothing more to say but share the recipe which I made up as I went.

Ingredients

Instant sachet miso soup

Two cups boiling water

One portion of instant ramen noodles 

Two handfuls of spinach

One egg

Method 

In a pot on the stove on a medium heat dissolve the miso in water

Add noodles, spinach and stir

Break egg into the middle, cover the pot and simmer for a few minutes until the egg is cooked as you like it

Eat straight from pot

Instagram a photo and tell everyone how good it was 

Xxx


healthy(ish) brownies 

Moist, luscious, chocolatey with a little crunch on the outside. I love brownies and the ones I usually make have a cup of sugar. After the overindulgence over Easter and more recently, my trip to Melbourne (the food is mega there, but that’s for another post), I had to put my thinking cap on. I was going to make sweet potato brownies from Melbourne Food Blogger Ink & Cleaver but I was out of sweet potato.

So I used what I had in the cupboard, substituting some coconut sugar for the refined white sugar, almond meal instead of white flour. It worked quite well, tasted really nice and chocolatey. A delicious chocolate hit, yummy but lighter.

There’s enough sweetness in the coconut sugar and I added some espresso powder to bring out the chocolate more. Coffee and chocolate are so good together. A marriage of flavour.

Here’s another shot of the finished brownie. I’m loving my new background. Bet you won’t guess what it is…. ok, it’s an exercise balance board but without the spherical base, so now balancing on it is a breeze. Does nothing for the abs though.


Anyway, enough of my wittering. Here’s the recipe.

First, preheat your oven to 180 deg C and line a slice tray rectangular, about 11″x7″ with foil

Ingredients 

120gm unsalted butter

200gm dark chocolate, chopped

2 teaspoons espresso powder

2 lightly beaten eggs

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1 cup almond meal

2 tablespoons coconut flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

What to do

  • Melt chocolate and butter together and allow to cool slightly (or the eggs will scramble)
  • Mix in the espresso
  • Add the eggs a little at a time, mixing as you go
  • Next in with the coconut sugar, then the almond meal, coconut flour and baking powder and combine
  • Spread the chocolate mix into the tin, flattening out the surface as much as you can
  • Into the middle of the oven it goes for 20-25 mins until it springs back when pressed. Stick a cake tester, wooden skewer or a knife into the middle and if it comes out a bit gooey, don’t worry it’s grand – gooey is good, once its not gooey all over, then it’s not baked enough and you wont be able to get it out of the tin and you’ll have to just grab a spoon and dig in. All ovens are individuals, like us.
  • Allow to cool and then carefully lift the foil wrapped goodness from the tin and slice as you please
  • Serve with cream/ice-cream/berries/caramel sauce/creme fraiche/chocolate sauce or just as is.

Ps: I did dust some icing sugar over the top, as it makes everything look prettier, especially for photographs, but it’s not necessary.

I have eaten a fair few already so it’s just as well they’re low sugar, I’m a hopeless case when it comes to restraint, honestly.

See ye next time

Aoife

xxx

 

 

Sitting outside the bakery 

I’m sitting outside the bakery as my daughter is at the doctor and if I concentrate really hard, I can just about see the neenish tarts. 

They’re my favourite and as it’s kind of approaching dinner time, I’m a bit hungry and could quite easily sink my teeth into one. 

I’ve never made neenish tarts, I’ve made caramel , lemon and jam tarts alright though. 

You see what I’m doing here. I’m torturing myself. I guess I could have one if I walked it off or did a million sit ups but I know in my heart I’m going to go home, pour a large wine and sit down.

I will be walking all over Melbourne this weekend though!! I was completely spontaneous and, having got an unexpected day off work tomorrow, booked a mini trip to Melbourne with my daughters!

So excited for all the eating, shopping, and being cultured and hopping on and off trams and strolling around Fitzroy, searching out Melbourne’s best burger, people watching having coffee down the laneways,  taking millions of photos which will flood instagram no doubt. 

So I’ll forego my neenish tart this afternoon and save myself for Melbourne.

These were afternoon tea in the QVB recently, not a neenish tart in sight, but very delicious. 

It was great to get a little selection of petit fours without having to get the full afternoon tea as we were not long after lunch to be honest and just wanted something a little sweet to have with a cuppa. 
This was on the first floor, The Palace Tearoom and was beautiful with gorgeous plates and cups and saucers. 


Aoife

Xx

chocolate

You know when you’ve had one too many wines and you swear you’ll never drink again? Well, if I see another mini chocolate egg…. Even as I write this, there is a basket full of little chocolate eggs glaring at me. Free me of this foil wrap. You know you want to.

As a child growing up in Ireland, we used to give up sweets for Lent, but we still used to buy sweets and chocolate bars and hide them in a shoe box under our beds, to be admired longingly occasionally, a little peek into the box, looking but no touching, except for St. Patricks Day, when we were allowed a day off from the non-sweet eating business and we’d devour something with gusto.

Then, on Easter morning, it was like having a selection box at Christmas (for the non Irish – look up selection box) and we’d be up and eating chocolate at dawn and feeling sick by breakfast. Do you remember that scene from the movie Chocolat, when the woman was found comatose in the shop window after eating all the chocolate?

My sister could make her Easter eggs last weeks, months even and when that shiny foil was but a distant memory to me and my brothers, my sister would casually produce an egg and have us wishing we hadn’t eaten ours quite so quickly.

The Easter Bunny had not planned on visiting our place this year, but bounced in at the request of my daughter, scattering eggs like glitter around the house. There are still a couple missing and I am hoping it’s not the dog who finds them.

This year I am not going to buy any more eggs for half nothing from the supermarkets tomorrow. No I am not. Definitely not. Certain of that. They will not sneak in my basket. No sir. For sure. Nope. No extra eggs in this house. Chocolate? Pfft, don’t need any of that. Forget that idea. Unhealthy, full of sugar.

Actually, I really won’t, honestly. You can count on that.

Anyway, here’s some chocolate to drool over, for the day that’s in it. This is birthday cake I made for a friend some time ago.

IMG_3939

Aoife

xxx