peach, raspberry & banana smoothie

The summer’s heat is really getting to us and the poor A/C is barely keeping up. We’re burning up in the heat, but I think we really need to install some insulation to save burning our pockets on the electricity bill, too! 😉

In light of summer, though, I thought I’d share with you a delicious summer smoothie. I’m so obsessed with smoothies, I could have them all year round, not just in summer!

 

This smoothie is packed with deliciously moist peach, plump raspberries and sweet banana. I add vanilla ice-cream to give it a smooth, creamy texture, but low fat yoghurt would work as a great substitute for the weight-conscious.

 

Before I move on to the recipe, I want to share with you an eBook. Oh no, it’s not my own one – not yet anyway! I was browsing the cookbooks here when I came across Modernist Cuisine (you can buy it through Inkling). I really loved this one because it’s jam-packed with droolworthy recipes and imagery. eBooks have actually become a big thing on my list of things I love because they’re so nice to flick through and many of them are interactive as well. Perhaps it’s coming from a girl who spent all her uni life behind a monitor, but as much as I love my printed cookbooks, I can’t help but stop at the e- ones. What do you like better? e-s or prints? 🙂

 

peach, raspberry & banana smoothie

 

Serves: about 2 tall glasses

Ingredients:

1 ripe banana

1/3 to 1/2 cup fresh raspberries

1 ripe yellow peach, skin on (adds a delicious texture and flavour)

1 cup skim milk (full cream, lite, do as you please)

3 – 4 heaped scoops of ice-cream (might add up to about a cup even!)

 

Method:

Place roughly chopped banana and half the milk into a blender and blend until smooth. This is a perfect little trick to make sure you don’t have any lumps of banana in your drink.

Add in remaining ingredients and blend lightly until smooth (don’t over-blend!)

Pour into glasses and serve with ice if desired, most importantly, cool and freshen up in the summer heat!

 

 

☆ my 2013 resolution | recipe roundup from my blogroll ☆

Since it’s year’s end and blog posts are trending around the topic, I thought I’d join the party and post:

a warm welcome to all my new subscribers – I hope to dish up delicacies that’ll tickle your taste buds this coming year;

a tribute to my blogging friends… a roundup of some of the dishes I’ve made from some of my beloved blogging friends. I enjoy receiving your recipes and droolworthy photos right to my inbox; and

my 2013 “new year’s resolution” for the blog to be freshly pressed which never happened!

I’m one of those people that “don’t do”. I don’t do this, I don’t take part in that, etc etc. and new year’s resolutions are one of those things that I don’t really do. Because they’re always a failure. Since “losing weight” has broken the records for being the most wanted, consecutive resolution for the past decade, 2013’s shifted towards the blog in hope that since I’m not losing weight when I set a goal to, I may lose weight in lieu of the blog not being freshly pressed. Did it work? I won’t tell you. 😛 Because there’s either a problem with my posts, the freshly pressed editors, my scales, or eating habits.. or perhaps all 4 things. 😉 I s’pose there’s still 20 minutes to go on my side of the globe, so there’s still hope 😉

 

Most of my 2013 was spent tearing my hair out to graduate from my bachelor, so my cooking frequency dropped, and so did my posts, but I have been on your blogs, and I have fulfilled my promises. When I say “bookmarked for later cooking”, I truly mean it.

Despite losing many photos of dishes I’ve made, I’ll be sharing what I can today.

~★~☆~★~☆~

This past year, and the couple before, I’ve craved, sighed in desire, been inspired by, and eagerly awaited posts from my blogroll, from Samah’s Good Cooks, to Sawsan’s Chef in Disguise, to Ksenia’s Saffron & Honey and more.

~★~☆~★~☆~

To begin, I’m going to share with you Rufus’ Stir-fried chicken with basil, mushrooms and chilli. Rufus was my first commenter, and subscriber and his ongoing presence really boosted my confidence and willingness to continue blogging. I’ve spent far too many late night flicking through Rufus’ daily posts, and have managed to learn a lot of new things from the blog. Thanks, Rufus & co.

Chicken Basil

This chicken basil recipe was delicious, and I thoroughly enjoyed the combination of flavours – minus some of the chilli as the girls around here can’t stand too much spice. Definitely give this recipe a go, all of you, it’s not to miss!

What’s comes after a really good meal? A really good dessert, of course! I cannot begin to explain how comforting, Rufus’ Brie and strawberries “pie” is, or how ridiculously tasty it is, or how simple to make it is. What’s not as simple as I thought though, is the cheese used in this dessert. And particularly, how it’s pronounced. Brie is apparently said Bree and not Bry like “dry”. Sorry, let me insist English is my second language to avoid the embarrassment! 😉

Brie and Strawberries

 

As I was not going to compete with Katherine’s talent, instead of roses and leaves on a rounded Brie pie, I folded over a what looked like a little bundle, and cut out (freehand) letters to spell … well you can see that for yourself! This was a perfectly timed dessert which I shared with the extended family after the birth of a little baby boy to my aunty. The only problem with this dessert is that it’s not enough. The next time I make this, I’m buying an extra large wheel of Brie so I can satisfy my portion needs of desserts this tasty. 🙂

~★~☆~★~☆~

Next I present to you Five Euro Food’s Roasted Beetroot Dip. Five Euro Food is run by Charles, also one of my early commenters and followers, who had to wait a really long time before I decided to check out who this loyal follower was. Since then I fell in love with the Swedish, French, English and all-things-in-between recipes he’d post.

Roasted Beetroot Dip

 

Charles had creative ideas when it came to beetroot which was fantastic for me – because I love beetroot, and, well sometimes my grandpa would buy far too many to just be disappointedly boiled or pickled. The roasted beetroot dip was delicious, although I’ll be roasting the garlic with the beetroot when I make this again. Perhaps our Aussie garlic tastes really strong, but any left over dip will have a super garlicky taste the next day – so enjoy it freshly made, it’s really hard not to finish in one sitting anyway!

If dips aren’t your thing, and you like the chips instead, then go no further than the Hand-cooked beetroot chips also at Five Euro Food.

Beetroot Chips

The littlest one here absolutely loves beetroot chips, so I just had to give these a go, and they were delicious, and far better than the store-bought packs. Be sure to pat your slices dry before frying to get a delicious crisp 🙂

~★~☆~★~☆~

Now if you haven’t headed over to My Ninja Naan, you’re really missing out. I’ve just about made all the smoothie recipes on this blog, and can’t get enough of them! I lost all the photos I had of the smoothies I’d made, but when I coincidentally found myself making yet another Date and Banana Smoothie, I put my glass down beside my window and grabbed my camera for a quick shot. If dates aren’t your thing, then you have to sip the strawberry banana smoothie instead. Both are so delicious! 🙂

Date & Banana Smoothie

Check out the texture on that date 😉 Definitely use medjool dates are they’re soft and will blend smoothly. When I made this one I only had small dried dates, but if you love a bit of texture, then by all means throw ’em in!

~★~☆~★~☆~

Next up is Eva from Kitchen Inspirations. I’ve made more recipes from Eva than I’ll list here, but I’ll share with you my attempt at making Eva’s Rösti potato. I wasn’t very confident when I made this back in January(!) so my rösti didn’t have the gorgeous streaks of browned potato throughout. But it was delicious nevertheless, and was eagerly welcomed into the tummies of the family.

Rosti Potato

From Eva’s blog, I’m also going to share with you her Lovely, flaky buttermilk cheese scones. To be honest with you, my scones weren’t as flaky as Eva’s but they tasted so delicious, I took them along to a family dinner they vanished before anything else did.

Cheese scones

~★~☆~★~☆~

I’ll end my little roundup with Dawn from First Look then Cook. I made her Chive and black pepper pop overs without having ever known what a pop over was. I learnt about these beauties from her blog! 🙂

Pop Overs

With so much batter I made large ones in the 12-case muffin tins and and mini ones in the 24-case muffin tins. The chives and black pepper really complemented each other, and I can only say I’m so lucky to have been introduced to such yummy little treats!

I hope you’ve enjoyed my little roundup. I can’t wait to list another, with recipes ranging from MJs Kitchen to Very Culinary‘s! 🙂

Until then, stay safe, keep well, and bon appétit! 🙂

Postcard from Singapore

Sending you a postcard from Singapore. Although tonight I’m in Malaysia, I wanted to share with you the green lemon lemonade Singapore serves. Recipe I replicated here at home after my last trip to Singapore. It’s such a beautiful city with amazing architecture!

20121215-013743.jpg

Hope to catch you on your blogs once back in Down Under! 🙂

the SLC

Ehm. Still alive. Just not blogging.

Since I started something called uni – there has been very little time to do anything but stress over assignments and waking up early after a very late night of study.

I miss home life – I really got used to it for …how many months?! 😮

 

So anyway, Food Doc has been kind enough to pass on this 7-link blog challenge. I’m so happy to take it up – I’m just completely stuffing this whole study thing, and taking a breather. To post.

 

Seven Links: Seven Categories: Here they are…

 

Most beautiful post: sinisterly pleasing stuffed potato – one of many: it was so hard to choose this one

Most popular post: luxurious lasagne muffins – a very impressive one, too!

Most controversial post: gleaming guacamole – sour cream smooth or chunky tomato?

Most helpful post: goodbye grandma: suitcase cake – received lots of hits from “how to” searches

Surprisingly successful post: charismatic choc-chip cupcakes – didn’t think it’d turn out so well after all

Lacked deserved attention post: precious pomegranate juice – honestly: pree-cciiouuuss!


fati is proud of it post:  baffling burger muffins – proud to have done them decently despite the rush!

 

 

Five bloggers to receive this challenge:

Doodlemum’s sketch blog

The Gourmet Wino blog

Marynika’s Food To Heart blog

A Dash of Sugar and Spice blog

Saffron & Honey blog

 

That concludes my challenge. Thank you Food Doc for the opportunity to stretch my mind and pick and choose from posts I have close attachments to!

Looking forward to posting a Kibbeh recipe really soon. It’s been sitting in my draw for months now (since I last made it)!

And keep an eye out for a note about my new camera (almost)… Yes, the one I wanted to buy about 3-4 months ago for those who knew. I’ve come really close to finally choosing one – I believe it’s going to be a Cannon (or Nikon possibly). Hoorah.

 

Also just a quick shout out to any advanced Java programmers. If you’re feeling kind enough to help me, I’ll be kind enough to bake you a treat and send it through express post  😉 No really. Java is killing me. Okay, I’ll pay for lunch instead if you don’t like mailed baked goods.

candid citricade

Candid Citricade – Why Just Lemonade?

Serves: 6

Ingredients:

6 medium yellow grapefruits

1 large red grapefruit

2 oranges

1 mandarin

2 1/4 cup white sugar (or to taste)

500 mL cold water

 

Method:

Wash the fruit if you’re a perfectionist 🙂

Cut the fruits in half.

I used an electric juicer because I don’t plan on building biceps 😉

Juice all the fruit, and add into a jug.

Don’t throw out the fleshy bits, I think they add a wonderful colour and texture to the juice.

Instead, dilute them with 200mL of water (to get them off the sides), and add them to the jug.

Dissolve the sugar in 300mL of water. Don’t worry if it doesn’t all dissolve completely.

Add the sugar/water mixture to the jug and keep stirring until the sugar dissolves.

Hint: I try to see whether it’s dissolved by pressing the ladle against the jug while mixing. If you hear the sugar scrape, then it’s not yet dissolved.

Pop into the fridge to chill.

Serve with something sweet – you’ll feel a party in your mouth after every bitter grapefruit sip you take!

While you party, remember to:

Devour!

precious pomegranate juice

It’s so tasty, there was only a glass left for 3 people to share.

Next time, I’ll sticky tape my mouth when doing this! 😉

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

8 medium pomegranates (even if they’re partially unripe)

1/2 cup sugar

water

Method:

Cut the pomegranates in half.

Seed the pomegranates using your preferred method. The one I use is as below:

Place the palm of your hand over the seeds.

Hold the pomegranate half over a large bowl.

Use a spoon (or any kitchen utensil) to hit the skin to rip the seeds away.

When your hand fills with seeds, drop them into the bowl and continue until the half is mostly empty.

Use your thumb to rip away any left over seeds.

Do this for all the pomegranates.

Remove any membranes (the white bits) from the seeds.

Place the pomegranate seeds in a blender.

Add water until you reach the top of the pomegranates (so for example, the seeds reached the “2 cup” marking on my blender, add enough water to reach the “2 cup” marking).

Add half a cup of sugar (-or to taste – of course add less than 1/2 a cup if your pommies are sweet!)

Blend for 3 – 5 seconds on the slowest setting (and literally no more!)

Fact: blending the pomegranates for too long will cause the inner seed membrane to rip and spread a feverishly bitter taste throughout the juice.

Drain the juice from the inner seeds using a fine seive.

Discard the seeds. Add the juice into a jug.

Serve on a hot day with your favourite snack.

Devour!

healthy hibiscus drink

I can’t even explain to you  how divine this drink tastes:

Don’t let fancy garnish get in your way.

Serves: 8

Ingredients:

5 g dried hibiscus

1 mandarin

1 orange

1 lemon

3/4 cup sugar (or to taste)

1.7 L tap water

Method:

Bring 1.7 L water to boil.

Add the dried hibiscus flowers to the water while still hot.

http://alfrasha.maktoob.com/alfrasha17/thread1183395-13/

Dried hibiscus

Leave aside [NOT in the fridge] for 30 mins – 1 hour (depending on if you’re in a hurry or not!) to release flavour.

Note, you can leave the flowers to soak for hours on end if you prefer. I think I left mine for 3 – 4 hours because I left the house. Either way, you’ll end up with the same great taste.

Cut the orange, mandarin and lemon into large cubes.

Add to a large bowl. Add the sugar and begin to “knead” the sugar-citrus mixture. This way you can extract flavour from the skins of these fruits, too.

Pour the hibiscus drink (with the flowers) and citrus mixture into a large jug or bowl.

Leave in the fridge for up to an hour.

Drain the drink into a jug so as to remove the citrus chunks and flowers.

Add sugar to taste (you may not need to do this).

Serve cold with your favourite meal or snack.

Devour!

luscious lemonade

When the family went to Singapore last year, we had some lemonade that was so tasty, we kept re-ordering a glass once it’s former finished. I tried to recreate the drink, and I think it was a job well done. Try it for yourself! It’s so tasty, you won’t regret it 🙂

Word of advice: skip the fancy garnish.

When you take your first sip of this, you wouldn’t want to be bothered by silly garnish!

Serves: 8

Ingredients:

10 green lemons (warning: not lime!)

1.8 L water

12 tbs sugar (or to taste)

Method:

Halve the green lemons and squeeze out the juice using a manual lemon juicer.

I don’t recommend you use the electric ones because they can really batter the lemons.

Pour the juice of the lemons straight unto a 2 L jug. Tap the juicer so that the nectar falls into the jug as well (this part is optional, I felt as though it added a really nice texture to the lemonade). Repeat the process until 9 of the 10 lemons are juiced.

Add water to the lemon juice. Add the sugar and stir well (until all the sugar is dissolved). Cut the remaining lemon in half. Half that again. Half the quarters one more time.

Am juicing this one, and quatering the other one!

Then me be done! 😀

Place the lemon eighths into the jug and place in the fridge to cool. If you’re in a hurry add a handful of ice cubes. To serve, pour the lemonade into a glass and be sure to top it off with a lemon eighth. This was how it was served back in Singapore. Add some ice cubes if desired. Devour!


A word of warning. If you want to make this in advance, don’t put in the lemon eighths immediately. It will make your lemonade bitter. This lemonade can stay in the fridge for 3 days. It’s best to pop in the lemon chunk just before serving (if making lemonade in advance is your thing!) 🙂

best banana milkshake

banana milkshake smoothie picture

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

3 bananas

800mL milk (it’s up to you to choose full cream, light, lactose free, soy, etc)

2 tps organic honey

6 ice cubes

1 small egg (optional)

 

Method:

Set up the blender. Peel and split the bananas into bite sized chunks.

Place the bananas in the blender with enough milk to cover the pieces (apprpxoximately 200mL)

Blend until completely smooth. This is the best trick to avoid having chunks of banana in your smoothie!

Add the remaining milk, honey, egg and ice cubes. Blend until smooth and frothy. Serve with an ice cube on top, or garnish with cocoa powder[1].

Devour!


[1] Sometimes I actually add cocoa powder into the shake so it becomes a chocolate banana shake, YUM! 🙂