Sep 15, 2019

Picturesque Country Bread with Ricotta, Cherry Tomatoes, and Basil

Not just pretty to look at, but also satisfied to the palate. 

Country bread with Ricotta, cherry tomatoes, and basil -





Ingredients?


  • Some slices country bread
  • Some cherry tomatoes (colorful variety even better)
  • Some ricotta cheese
  • Some basil leaves
  • Some balsamic vinegar
  • Some salt
  • Some black pepper


How?


Spread some ricotta cheese onto the country bread slices. Top with halved cherry tomatoes.



Sprinkle some salt and black pepper. No need to drizzle over olive oil for this recipe. Into the oven using high heat, toast till the cherry tomatoes shrink a wee bit, but not burning or over-hardening the bread slices.


Once ready, remove from heat then drizzle over some balsamic vinegar. Garnish with basil leaves in between tomatoes.




Super easy to make and the result can't be more satisfying. Use balsamic reduction if available, just a few drops makes a big difference.




By the way, this recipe was kind of vague since all the ingredients used were noted as "some" instead of exact portion. No strict rules here, spread more ricotta if you'd like, add a little bit of this and a little bit of that. It's so simple, just trust your gut feelings, nothing major can go wrong with this recipe.




Wait, maybe one thing. Do not over-toast the bread slices in the oven especially we are using high heat here. Just warm enough so the edge of the bread gets crunchy. Also with the help of the heat, we can further condense the flavors for these juicy tomatoes.


Extended reading:

Sep 8, 2019

Protein Loaded Post-Workout Meal Using Avocado, Broccoli, Eggs, and Salmon

Intuitively putting all these ingredients together, but wait...avocado, broccoli, eggs, and salmon, aren't those ingredients all high in protein? Does that mean it can be a perfect post-workout meal?

Protein loaded post-workout meal using avocado, broccoli, eggs, and salmon -





Ingredients?


  • 2 hard boiled eggs
  • 1 small avocado
  • 1 broccoli
  • 1 salmon fillet
  • 1 tablespoon bitter tea oil (olive oil works fine too)
  • 2 teaspoons grated ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon mixed dried Italian seasoning
  • 1/8 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 2 lemon or lime wedges
  • Some salt
  • Some black pepper


How?

Boil the eggs first. Once cool down, remove the egg shells then cut into smaller chunks.

Cut the broccoli into smaller pieces. Bring a pot of water to a boil, season the water with salt. Quickly cook the broccoli in salt water, no more than 1 minute. Drain well and set aside for later use.




Cut the salmon fillet into thick strips or smaller chunks. Season with some salt and black pepper. 


Grate the ginger. Remove the avocado skin and cut into big cubes.


Prepare a non-stick pan. Drizzle some bitter tea oil over and turn to medium high heat. Add in grated ginger and transfer the salmon over. Sear till fully cooked and slightly browned on sides. Remove from heat. Use a kitchen towel to absorb excess oil if desired.


Mix together the broccoli, eggs, and salmon with 1/4 teaspoon of dried Italian herbs and 1/8 teaspoon of cumin. Also squeeze in juice of 1 lemon or lime wedge. Mix in avocado cubes last. Taste and see if need more salt.


Serve with extra lemon or lime wedge on the side. 




To make it a fuller meal, add in some chopped lettuce or even blend in some quinoa. Serve hot or cold, both works fine. 


On top of protein, avocado also contains healthy fats, broccoli has folate and potassium, and eggs can help with the meal portion since it can be a much more filling ingredient. Salmon, don't even get me started, just think about its omega-3 fatty acids. Putting them together, what a power boost we've got here.



Other avocado recipes:

Sep 1, 2019

A Change of Scene, How About Something Sweet? Milk Chocolate Matcha Lava Cake

Haven't been posting dessert recipes for a while, here's a change of scene, something sweet this time.

Milk chocolate matcha lava cake -





Ingredients (about 1 medium portion or 2 smaller servings)?


  • 60 grams milk chocolate
  • 40 grams unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 32 to 35 grams granulated sugar
  • 25 grams all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 8 grams matcha powder
  • 1 egg
  • Some powdered sugar


How?


I'm going for the easier route by making the lava cake batter all at once, instead of making the semi-melting center separately. To achieve the best lava effect, in my opinion, the center filling needs to be made into a ganache then chill in the freezer before assembling. However, the all-in-one process might not be perfect, but still delicious as well, and saves some extra works for sure.


Preheat the oven to 445 degrees Fahrenheit/230 degrees Celsius. 


Rest the butter in room temperature so it softens before use. Brush some to the ramekin/s then dust with flour. It'll help to prevent the cake from sticking to the sides and easier to revert the cake onto a serving plate later on.




Prepare a double boiler and melt the milk chocolate. Remove from heat and mix the chocolate with a spatula till fully melted.


Add in softened butter and continue to mix till incorporated.




Mix in sugar and mix again.


Beat the egg first then transfer that to the chocolate mixture too. Mix till combined.


Sift in flour and matcha powder. Mix till no lumps present.


Pour the mixture into ramekin/s. Into the oven and bake for around 12 minutes (if using medium sized ramekins). Remove from heat and let it cool for about 10 minutes.




Run a knife along the inner edge of the ramekin first. Invert the cake onto serving plate. Garnish with powdered sugar and serve immediately. 




Garnish with fresh berries or mint leaves too if desired. On top of all these serving options, vanilla ice cream is still my favorite. Just can't get enough of that ice and cold contrast.



Other dessert recipes: