recipe

A Collection of Recipes

i have been wanting to share this with you since my kitchen tea in September, my bridesmaids organised a printed book filled with a wonderful collection of recipes collected from all the women in my life. the recipes were either their favourites, ones they knew i’d love, or ones that had a special history (like the Buttermilk Sponge cake that Jessica and i have been baking since primary school, or any of the multitude of recipes my mom included). it was designed by Pauli and illustrated with sweet watercolours by Amy. you can faintly see the embossing on the cover – Miss Moss / Mrs Visser – a long running joke that i should change the name of the blog now that i’m married (i won’t!)

i thought perhaps a nice challenge for 2014 would be to try all the recipes in the book, and possibly share them with all of you. i can’t promise exceptional food photography or styling, but at least you’ll be able to try out my mom’s Malva Pudding, my mother in law’s buttermilk rusks (with coffee in the morning, just the best) or my grandmother’s fudge – which actually made an appearance at our wedding and was a sweet, sweet hit.

Miss Moss Recipe Book Miss Moss Recipe Book Miss Moss Recipe Book Miss Moss Recipe Book Miss Moss Recipe Book Miss Moss Recipe Book Miss Moss Recipe Book Miss Moss Recipe Book Miss Moss Recipe Book

Comments { 36 }

Mushroom & Taleggio Cheese Pie

it all started with cheese.

i fell in love with Taleggio cheese since Jess introduced it to me. so i made this pie on an icy cold day while on holiday with my family last winter. it was a hit – the cheese and the mushroom and the flaky pastry are a perfect combination. you can actually see my mom slapping my brother’s hand away from it in one of the photos. it was gone in 5 minutes.

it’s also a super easy recipe to make, especially since you use ready-made puff pastry that can be bought at any good supermarket. you all know i’m not the most prolific cook – so if i can get away with making something delicious with minimal effort, then that’s exactly what’s going to happen.

taleggio can be quite difficult to find*, and the imported Italian varieties are often pretty expensive. you can substitute with other semi-soft cheeses like fontina, havarti or raclette – though i would highly recommend hunting down some taleggio if you can! if you buy an imported variety from a local deli the cheese might have quite a pungent smell, don’t be put off by that – it actually has a far milder and almost fruity taste (especially once it’s cooked). don’t use mozzarella as it would probably prove too bland in this pie.

* for local readers: you can find Taleggio at Checkers or Woolies – look for the Portobello brand.

Mushroom & Taleggio Cheese Pie

25g butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
250g mushrooms, thinly sliced (basically one punnet of mushrooms)
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves (if you can’t find fresh, freeze dried would also work)
375g fresh puff pastry (a standard roll of puff pastry)
1 small packet of fresh rocket (arugula)
300g Taleggio, sliced
1 egg, beaten

- Heat the butter and olive oil in a frying pan over a high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook until softened.
- Reduce the heat, add the garlic and thyme leaves. Season with pepper and cook for 2 minutes. Take off the heat & leave to cool.
- Roll out the puff pastry on a floured surface into a rectangular shape. Try to make it as long as you can so that you have enough space to spread the filling quite thinly.
- Scatter the rocket over 1 half of the pastry, then top with the mushrooms and sliced Taleggio.
- Brush the pastry edges with egg and fold the pastry in half over the filling, pressing to seal.
- Put on a baking sheet and prick the pastry with a fork.
- Set the pie aside to rest while you preheat the oven to 220°C / 425°F
- Egg wash the pastry and decorate as you fancy. Make a few slashes in the top before putting it in the oven.
- Bake for 15 minutes, until golden. Serve hot!

Comments { 33 }

Mac & Cheese

when i asked Jessica if she’d like to contribute a food related guest post I didn’t give her any direction because I knew that anything she made would be amazingly tasty. i had a good laugh when she sent me this. i was having a discussion with my brother just the other day about what our last meals on earth would be if we could choose, and of course i said mac and cheese. my mom’s mac and cheese, more specifically, but Jessica’s version looks it might be the winner (probably due to this line: “Aim to use as much cheese as possible!  More than you think is appropriate.”)


Diana and I have known each other since we were 7 years old.  That’s almost 22 years I have been witness to her love affair with cheese.  On occasion she has described herself as having “a penchant for nice cheese”.  More like fervent enthusiasm.  I have a letter from our schoolgirl days in which Diana compares our friendship to no less than 25 different cheeses:

“… the legend of the Cheesemasters will live on … like mozzarella melting over a tomato covered pizza base … like Cheddar, Pecorino, Emmenthal and Parmesan; like Havarti, Sweetmilk, Motali and Brie … ” dot dot dot etcetera dot dot.

Her #1 cheese based dish of course, is Macaroni and Cheese.  It has to be the ultimate comfort food.  And boy is this recipe not the most delicious macaroni cheese I have ever tasted.  Aim to use as much cheese as possible!  More than you think is appropriate.

I adapted this recipe from Hawksmoor at Home.  They make use of distinctively English cheeses, namely Stilton, Ogleshield and Montgomery Cheddar.  I chose Taleggio for its excellent melting ability, and an aged Gruyere for its fruity flavour.

  • 500g macaroni
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 600ml milk
  • 60g butter
  • 60g flour
  • 250g Strong Cheddar, grated
  • 200g Gruyere, grated
  • 150g Taleggio, crumbled
  • Maldon sea salt
  • white pepper
  • pinch of ground nutmeg
  1. You can make four individual macaroni servings, or bake in a medium-sized oven proof dish.  Brush the dish with half the olive oil and rub with the cut clove of garlic.
  2. Cook the macaroni in salted water until al dente.  Drain and refresh under cold running water, then mix with the remaining oil.
  3. In a saucepan bring the milk up to boiling point, then reduce the heat and keep warm.
  4. In another saucepan melt the butter over a medium heat, whisk in the flour and keep whisking until you have a pale golden ‘roux’ or grainy looking paste.  Return this saucepan to a medium heat and ladle the hot milk into the roux, a cup at a time, whisking all the time and completely incorporating each cup of milk before adding the next one.  After all the milk has been added, continue to whisk until the sauce thickens and bubbles gently (about 2 minutes).
  5. Take the pan off the heat, add the taleggio, gruyere and 125g of the cheddar, and stir until completely incorporated.  Season to taste with salt and pepper and a pinch of nutmeg.
  6. Pour three quarters of the sauce over the pasta and mix well.  Tip the mixture into the baking dish.  Top with the remaining sauce and half the remaining cheddar.
  7. Preheat the oven to 200°C and bake for 20 minutes.  Sprinkle over the rest of the cheddar and bake for another 10 – 15 minutes, or until brown.

 

Comments { 18 }

Fondue Party

i’m not sure how fondue ever went out of fashion. it is a pot of melted cheese for heaven’s sake. there’s plenty of wine in there, and you stick pieces of bread into it. how is that not a good thing? an excellent thing, in fact. the first time i went to paris i overindulged in a mini pot of fondue at one of those terribly touristy restaurants on the left bank – it was wonderful, but i did feel a bit weird sitting there enjoying it by myself. there’s a good reason why a fondue set comes with 6 sticks you know. unless you enjoy eating an entire pot of cheese on your own… in which case, more power to you.

- image courtesy of cowtools

whenever the topic of fondue comes up (especially between jessica and i) we always muse that that our parents probably still have their fondue sets tucked away in a box somewhere. so many people seem to be under the impression that making fondue is a tedious undertaking, but the classic cheese fondue recipe is so simple – there are basically only 5 ingredients: cheese, wine, garlic, cornstarch & seasoning. i think it’s time to dig around in the garage and resurrect those avocado and mustard coloured beauties for some cheesy fun times.

i am also really excited by the thought of a beer fondue. cheese + beer = diana’s weakness.

- dubliner cheese fondue – image courtesy of a spicy perspective


spring green vintage fondue pot


- ingredients for a porcini cheese fondue, image courtesy of tastefood


- ruffoni copper fondue pot & old dutch copper brass fondue set

- image courtesy of uh … bob

Comments { 19 }

homemade nutella

wow, so jessica and i finally had the chance to try another little recipe for our food series. this time something sweet – homemade nutella. the pics alone will show you how ridiculously easy this is to make, at a fraction of the price of real nutella … and it’s actually tastier (in my opinion)

you’ll need a bar of your preferred chocolate – obviously the better the chocolate the nicer your nutella is going to be. the slab of beacon served us well, but i can imagine that using lindt would be delectable…

150 grams hazelnuts:

1/2 cup of icing sugar:

1/4 cup of cocoa powder:

a couple of teaspoons of vegetable oil:

that’s all you need! now, roast the hazelnuts in a hot oven. jessica used her pizza oven, but just use a conventional oven, i’d say 180°c / 350°f – and keep an eye on it. when they start browning, take them out.

mmm perfectly roasted hazelnuts…

in the meantime, melt your chocolate using a double boiler or simply a bowl on top of a pot of boiling water – on low heat. the chocolate has to melt slowly to prevent becoming lumpy or grainy.

mmm perfectly melting chocolate…

while the chocolate is melting pop your hazelnuts into a food processor (note: a food processor, not a blender)

grind away until the nuts become a bit buttery but still chunky:

add all the dry ingredients and the completely melted chocolate:

if your food processor is broken, just jimmy it with a knife….

please also notice the incredibly ironic red dot design award sticker on this faulty piece of machinery

so, you’ll want to blend away until the mix is as smooth as possible – this will probably take around 15 minutes. add in a teaspoon or two of the vegetable oil while it’s going…. you won’t get it as smooth as real nutella unless you have an industrial blender.

when you’re satisfied with the smoothness let the mixture set for about an hour (put it in the fridge if you like)

… and serve with a freshly baked croissant or just eat it on it’s own …

mmmm NUTELLA!

Comments { 16 }

buttermilk fried chicken

for the first installment of our food series, jess wanted to try a buttermilk fried chicken recipe that didn’t smack of KFC. this isn’t the usual fare at nook, which is probably one of the reasons it was so appealing to make, plus it was a perfect sunny saturday and we had cold beers in the fridge. what goes best with cold beers? fried chicken. you’ll need:

the brine is in order to prep the chicken. bring all the ingredients to the boil and then let it cool down. soak the chicken overnight (12 hours) and then rinse the pieces under water, otherwise the meat will be too salty. basically the brine just makes the chicken super tender (and boy does it turn out tender…)

now prep your coating – mix all the dry ingredients together (flour, spice, paprika) and divide into two bowls.

pour the buttermilk into another bowl.

from here it’s super simple, dip the chicken into flour bowl 1, then buttermilk, then flour bowl 2…

place the battered pieces on a tray lined with baking paper, thusly:

heat your oil so long, to 160 C / 320 F

when the oil is ready place your first piece of chicken in (sizzle sizzle)

turn the pieces every now and then

you can put a few pieces in at a time, enough to sit comfortably in the pot. frying time is 10-12 minutes…

mmm perfectly crispy fried chicken

let them chill on a cooling tray for a few minutes

garnish with your favourite herbs – jess quick fried some fresh marjoram

nom nom nom!

serve with locally brewed beer, crisp white wine & a simple green salad

perfect…

bon appetito…

ps: this was much  much better than KFC, obviously.

Comments { 7 }

cinnabons

just a wee pictorial teaser before i kick off the new food series jessica and i are doing (she cooks, i take photos and we eat). this isn’t a real how to because i wasn’t really paying attention while she was making her famous cinnabons – i was just picking at the pastry and warming myself in front of the oven, really.

she defrosted some dough from the freezer  - jessica uses croissant dough (her own recipe, which i can’t divulge!)

roll it out, with vigour:

spread some muscovado sugar:

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Comments { 8 }

greek salad

after spying a classic walnut, blue cheese & pear salad on robyn maclarty’s blog koek, i immediately thought of my favourite salad of the authentic greek kind. i’m not talking the watered down version you get at mugg & bean and numerous other cafes across the country – greek salad does not have lettuce in it.

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Comments { 2 }