Newfie Voodoo

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This is Fisherman’s Brewis, and it will make you very, very quiet, and very, very full, and very.. very.. happy.

We haven’t made this at home before, but we’ve had it at a couple of places around Newfoundland. It’s a traditional dish and comes from when the boys were out on the boat and they didnt have a whole lot of stuff to work with. Some hard bread, some salt fish, a couple potaters and fatback pork.. oh baby.

CB made this for us before he left for work this afternoon so that when we were done adventuring we just had to heat it up in the cast iron pan before dinner. We had it with scrunchions, and mustard cabbage pickles! WAAAAH!!

It was the perfect thing to eat tonight because the day is cold and foggy and the kind of damp that gets in your bones and makes you want to nap all day. Its going to be a go to winter meal I think. Oh by the way, this ain’t no health food.

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Fisherman’s Brewis & Scrunchions

4 cakes hard bread

4 potatoes

1 lb salt cod

6 slices salt pork

1 small onion

Soak salt fish in one container, and hard bread in another, in cold water overnight.

In the morning, boil the salt fish in clean water, and on top of the pot steam the hard bread for about 20 minutes until the bread is soft and the fish flakes.

Remove from heat and drain. Skin, bone and flake fish – set-aside.

Boil potatoes. Mix them with hard bread and salt fish until its all together, smashing the potatoes up a bit as you go.

Scrunchions:

In a pan on low heat, fry salt pork until all fat is rendered out. Add onions and cook until golden brown. Spoon fat and onions over fish and brewis like a beautiful, fatty gravy. Oh gawwwrrdd…

 

AND THEN THERE WAS PIE.

 

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This is a local speciality, a lassie tart, and I had never eaten it or even heard of it until I moved here. It is the stuff of legends, everyone’s mum makes it the best and one lady, Margaret, has become somewhat of a mythic, legendery pie hero to me. Everyone whispers in hushed tones “not as good as Margarets..” but thats ok because Margaret is obviously using some awesome Newfie voodoo pie magic and one day I will learn her dark arts! The crust is like a gingersnap cookie, made with molasses and black tea. Its rolled out thin and spread with funky, sour partridgeberry jam — not too sweet! And then a lattice crust is assembled on top and you back it for about 20 minutes until the jam starts to bubble. Serve it with ice cream, it’s SO GOOD! But not as good as Margarets……

 
‘Lassie Tart

Dough:

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup molasses

2 cups flour

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp clove

1 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup strong brewed black tea

Partridge Berry Jam:

6 cups partridgeberries

2 tbsp lemon juice

1/4 cup brown sugar

To make the dough, cream the butter and molasses. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and salt. In a small bowl or cup, stir the baking soda into the hot brewed tea, then add immediately to the butter-and-molasses mixture and stir well. Add dry ingredients to the same bowl and mix until just combined. Pat the dough into a ball and flatten, wrap in plastic wrap and chill it in the fridge overnight or for at least 2 hours.

To make the partridgeberry jam, place the berries, lemon juice, lemon zest and sugar in a heavy-bottomed pot and simmer over medium-low heat for 1 hour. Set aside and let cool.

To assemble the tarts, roll out the dough to 1/8 inch thick and 10 inches round. Transfer to an 8-inch tart pan and trim the overhanging edges. Form a ball with the scraps, roll out the dough and cut out strips for the lattice top.

Fill tart with 1/2 inch of partridgeberry jam. Place the lattice overtop and use a fork to crimp the edges of the pastry.

Bake at 350 F for 25-35 minutes or until the top is dark brown and the jam is starting to bubble.

 

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Cinnamon & Rhubarb Cupcakes

Cinnamon spiced cake, swirls of soft rhubarb frosting, with a tart rhubarb surprise inside. Its like a coffee cake all dressed up to go to a fancy party!

I made a rhubarb compote from the rhubarb I picked out of the garden as soon as I could this morning. Rhubarb is one of the best things. I was just going to keep it and spoon it over my yogurt in the morning, but I want to make cupcakes to enter into a contest to win a cool gadget, so I thought why not.

Rhubarb syrup, strained of of compote. Look at that colour!

I had a recipe for snickerdoodle cupcake Ive been wanting to try and cinnamon + rhubarb is great. This recipe is not fussy and including cooling time I made these in about an hour this afternoon. Now I can sit down and have a cup of tea and eat them all before anyone else comes home, wahaha. No one has to know….

Cinnamon Cupcakes with Rhubarb Frosting

Yield: 1 Dozen
Time: 30 minutes

Hardware:

– 2 large bowls
– 1 medium bowl
– Spatula
– Electric mixer
– Small pot
– Wooden spoon
– 1 regular sized muffin tray (12)
– Cupcake liners
– Fine mesh strainer
– Piping Bag + Tip or an Ice Cream Scoop

Software:

Cinnamon Cupcakes

1 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup butter, soft
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
vanilla
3/4 cup milk

Filling: Strained rhubarb compote

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line standard muffin tins with paper cupcake liners.

Sift together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.

With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as you go. Beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low.

With the a spatula, fold in flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of milk, until evenly combined and you have a smooth batter.

** If you use your electric mixer to add in the flour you will more than likely overwork the batter, making it sticky and elastic.

Fill just the bottom of each cupcake liner with about a tablespoon of batter. Spoon a teaspoon sized blob of rhubarb compote in the middle and then cover with more batter to reach 3/4 of the way to the top of the liner.

Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean, about 20 minutes.

Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes.

Rhubarb Compote

1 1/2 cups chopped rhubarb
1/2 cup sugar
Zest and juice of 1 orange

Combine and cook over medium heat 10-12 minutes, until mixture resembles apple sauce.
Strain off liquid and set aside for using later. Cool both to room temperature.

Rhubarb Frosting

1/2 cup butter softened
1/2 cup reserved liquid from rhubarb compote
5-6 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Sift powdered sugar and set aside.
Beat together butter, rhubarb puree, and vanilla. Gradually add the powdered sugar until it reaches your desired consistency.
To finish, combine remaining pipe frosting on each cupcake.

Popcorn Creme Brulee

Sweet, salty, creamy, buttery, smooth, crunchy.. need I go on?

Infusing cream with the taste of freshly popped, salty, buttered popcorn makes a particularly delicious creme brulee. Your spoon cracks through the layer of crunchy caramel into a silky custard below. The combination of caramel and butter popcorn makes this taste like candy corn. Only way sexier.

I had an item on the menu at the hotel that was a butterscotch tart, shortbread, a scoop of butter popcorn ice cream. Pretty much as much butter and salt and sugar as I could get onto one plate. It was kind of meh, however the Popcorn ice cream was addictive. I found myself craving it today, and alas without an ice cream maker. Creme Brulee is basically ice cream but you chuck it in the oven instead of the freezer! This definitely satisfied my craving.

You can use this method to flavour your cream with any number of things before hand, and then strain them out just like the popcorn. Its a nice way to coax the flavour out of something like tea, peach pits, flower if you’re into it..

For more details or to download a PDF version, check it out on Instructables.

Butter Popcorn Creme Brulee

Yield: 2 large or 4 small ramekins
Time: 6 hours
Cost: <$10

Hardware:

– 2 medium, heavy bottomed pots
– 4 cup measuring cup, with spout
– tinfoil
– fine mesh strainer
– whisk
– 2 large ramekins, or 4 small ramekins
– dish large and deep enough for ramekins
– kettle
– tinfoil
– butane torch

Software:

1/4 cup popcorn kernels
1/4 cup canola or peanut oil
2 tbsp butter

OR 2 1/2 cups of freshly popped microwave popcorn

1 cup heavy cream (+ an extra 1 cup  handy in case of absorbent kernels!)
1 cup whole milk
4 egg yolks
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp salt (may need more or less)

1/2 cup sugar for the brulee bit

Instructions:

Heat milk + cream in a pot, just until its hot to the touch, not boiling.

Meanwhile..

Pour 4 tsp of oil into the pot, dump in popcorn kernels and swirl to coat with oil. Cover with lid or tinfoil. Place over medium-high heat and watch carefully. When your kernels start popping, shake your pot so that popcorn rises to the top and the unpopped kernels shake back into the hot oil at the bottom. Continue popping until most of your kernels have popped.

Be VERY careful not to burn any kernels. Any hit of burnt popcorn and that’s all you will taste in your creme brulee! Its better to leave some kernels unpopped then try to pop it all and burn some.

When your popcorn is done, take it off the heat. Throw your butter into the bare bottom of the pot, so that it melts quickly in the residual heat. Put the lid back on once its melted, and shake.

Add buttery popcorn into cream & milk. Stir, and let sit at least 1 hour to steep all the flavour out. For maximum popcorn flavour, leave in the fridge over night.

When your mixture has finished steeping, pour through a fine mesh strainer into a measuring cup with a spout. Make sure to press the popcorn in the strainer to squeeze out all the cream. Some may have been absorbed by the popcorn, just add as much more fresh cream as you need to measure 2 cups.

Have your egg yolks in a large round bowl and whisk at the ready.

Pour into a medium pot with the sugar + salt, and bring to a simmer. Do not boil, you just want the cream to be hot! Taste the mixture, and and more salt if needed. I find the more salt I add, the more it brings out that movie theatre flavour.

Rinse out your measuring cup.

Preheat your oven to 300F.

Switch on your kettle, with 4 cups of water inside.

Carefully pour the hot cream into the yolks, in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly. Once all the cream is added, pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer into the measuring cup.

Place ramekins into the large baking dish.  Divide the mix evenly into each ramekin.

If there’s a lot of bubbles on the surface you can get rid of them by quickly passing your torch over the top to break them. That will make the top smooth as glass when they come out of the oven.

Pour in enough hot water to reach the middle of each ramekin. Cover the baking dish with tinfoil.

Bake at 300F for 30-45 minutes. If your ramekins are larger, they will take longer. Your creme brulee’s are done when you shake the ramekin and there is a slight jiggle, a shimmy, if you will. Like this:

Refridgerate for atleast 2 hours before you brulee the tops.

To Brulee:

Sprinkle a tbsp of sugar over the top of the creme brulee, turning it to distribute the sugar in a nice even layer. With your kitchen torch lit in one hand, and your brulee on a slight angle in the other, begin to melt and burn the sugar, while turning your ramekin. You want the sugar to get quite dark, but BLACK is never good. Let cool 5-10 minutes before cracking the top and eating all the soft goodness underneath!

Hoki & Pickled Beets

Last night we had such a New Zealand tasting dinner! Hoki fillets were on special, yahoo. It’s a nice, flakey white fish that has a very gentle flavour, not too fishy. Not that I mind fishy. Breaded hoki is my usual meal at the local take away, I’m crazy for it.

I was thinking because it has such a light flavour, it could probably handle very strong flavours in contrast. So I mixed together some strong grainy dijon mustard, a little olive oil, balsamic vinegar, paprika and salt and spread it over the fillets and baked them in the oven. I served them with swiss chard (silverbeet, here) with caramelized onions & roasted peanuts, pickled beets and capers. So much flavour!

We had a filet left over, so I mashed it up with some cream cheese until it was light and airy, smeared it on some pumpernickel with some finely chopped leftover beets and capers. It was a really nice little lunch. Here’s a recipe for the spread! It would also be nice with any smoked fish.

 

 

Hoki & Dijon Spread
Yield: 1 1/2 cups
Time: 15 minutes
Cost: $2.00

1 filet hoki, cooked
4 tbsp cream cheese
1 tsp grainy dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vinegar or lemon juice
pinch of paprika
black pepper

Place all ingredients into a medium sized mortar & pestle or food processor. Grind or puree until texture is consistently smooth and airy. Adjust seasonings to taste.

Tea & Cake

Spring has arrived in New Zealand but I think it forgot to bring the nice weather with it. Today is pretty grey, with a cold wind and I’m hiding from it. We’re spending our Sunday in the living room, wrapped up in blankets, covered in poodles watching daytime television. Its the perfect sort of day for a nice old fashioned tea cake.

This is not a fancy cake. I just chuck everything in a food processor and press a button. Spoon it into a parchment lined loaf, bundt or cake pan and let it do its thing in the oven. The cake has a soft, almost squidgy texture, which reminds me a little of pumpkin pie. Make sure to use persimmons that are nearly ready to burst they are so ripe, that’s when they have the nicest flavour and holds up against the whiskey I poured into the batter.

Its really lovely covered in some freshly whipped cream with a cup of sweet black tea.

Persimmon & Whiskey Cake

Time: < 1 hour
Yield: 1 Loaf or 8″ cake

3 ripe persimmons
3 eggs
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup butter
1/2 cup whiskey
1 cup raisins
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp salt
1 tsp nutmeg

In a small pot heat whiskey + butter until melted, add raisins and set aside.

Cut each nice ripe persimmon in half, and scoop out the insides into a food processor. Puree.

Add in eggs and sugar. Blend until smooth.

In a bowl combine your flour, baking soda and salt and give it a stir together.

Add your flour mix to the food processor. Pulse until well mixed. Pour in warmed butter, whiskey and raisin mix, and pulse just a couple of times to combine. If you over do it you’ll puree the raisins, and you just need to give them a bit of a chop.

Spoon batter out into a parchment lined loaf or cake pan and bake at 350F for around 45 minutes, until a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.

Optional:

Beat 1 cup of heavy cream to medium peaks and spoon over the cake.

Old Fashioned Cake Doughnuts

Love me some dohnits!

These are great doughnuts. I like to make them when I’m craving something terrible, but don’t have the patience to make proper yeasted doughnuts or a giant chocolate cake. They’re cake doughnuts, and they take no time at all to whip up.

They are soft and lovely inside, with a hint of nutmeg, covered in sweet crunchy glaze. Yom. I have posted the recipe here, with lots of pictures and a way more thorough set of directions if you’re interested. I have also added how to make them into really proper sour cream doughnuts, how to fry them perfectly, and different flavours of glaze.

Old Fashioned Cake Doughnuts

Yield: 12 medium sized donuts + holes
Time: 30-45 minutes
Cost: <10

Hardware:

– large bowl
– medium bowl
– heavy bottomed pot suitable for deep frying
– spider, slotted spoon or tongs
– chopsticks or two spoons
– rolling pin
– cookie cutters, 3″ for the shape and 1″ for the holes
– cooling rack
– tea towel

Software:

– 2 ½ cups flour + more for dusting
– ½ cup white sugar
– 1 tsp baking powder
– ½ tsp baking soda
– 2 tsp nutmeg
– ½ tsp salt
– 1 egg
– 1 cup buttermilk
– ½ cup butter, melted

Optional:
For old fashioned sour cream doughnuts, sub sour cream thinned out with a tbsp or two of water for the buttermilk in the recipe. For a sour cream glaze, sub in sour cream for the melted butter + 1 squirt of lemon juice

Instructions:

Combine dry ingredients.

Mix wet ingredients into dry.

Knead until dough comes together. Roll out ¾ inch thick and fry at 375 degrees.

If you don’t have buttermilk, you can use a milk with a tbsp of lemon juice like I have here. You can also use sour cream thinned out with a little bit of water, or even yoghurt.

Glaze

4 cups icing sugar

¼ cup butter, melted

1 tsp vanilla

1 tbsp honey

Hot Water

Sift icing sugar into a medium sized bowl.
Add honey ,melted butter and vanilla to icing sugar and mix.
Add hot water until desired consistency is achieved, while mixing well.

 

Toasty Oaty

Made some granola bars! Woop!

I’ve been posting some recipes to Instructables and I’m loving that website. DIY and How To’s for everything from chicken soup to laser robots. Yeah, laser robots. It’s a thing.. in the future..

I’ll keep posting what I make here of course, but I’ll be linking it to my Instructable pages for a more in depth break down. Also my mom joined, which is awesome. We are nerdy instruction pals 4ever. Also, my cream cheese recipe, has twenty two thousand views. How mental is that!

These granola bars are the cats ass BTW. Crunchy outside, chewy inside, easy, fast, cheap, healthy.. what more could you want.

Healthy Granola Bars
Yield:  12 bars
Time: 15 mins. prep, 1 hour bake
Cost: <$10 or approx. 0.60 cents per bar

Hardware:

– medium sized pot
– baking sheet
– parchment paper
– wooden spoon
– 8×8 inch square cake pan, greased and lined with parchment paper

Software:

– 1 can sweetened condensed milk
– 2 cups rolled oats (not quick oats)
– 1 tsp salt
– 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
– 1 cup nuts
– 1 cup dried fruit

Optional:
1 cup chopped chocolate
1 tsp oil

Combine + melt for dipping or drizzling over bars.

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Spread out oats and nuts (but not the fruit!) on a cookie sheet.

Toast in the oven for about 10 minutes, stirring often to avoid burning the oats around the edges. As soon as it’s turning a bit brown and you can smell the toasty nuts, it’s done. Set aside.

In a saucepan, heat the condensed milk until the consistency is runny. Add in any spices + salt.

Add all of the dry ingredients and stir to thoroughly mix and evenly distribute all ingredients.

Pour the mixture into a 8×8 inch parchment lined baking pan and and flatten with a spatula or the back of a spoon.

Bake for about an hour @ 300  degrees until the mixture looks dry and is not sticky to the touch. It should be just barely starting to brown.