Sunday, July 24, 2011

Potato & Leek Soup

*GREEN* Potato and Leek Soup
I've resisted this....  I thought is didn't sound very appetising.  I haven't changed my mind yet.... it's only started cooking!  But I've been encouraged to try with reviews of the basic Failsafe recipe on the Facebook Failsafe Eaters Support Group (see links).  So, I've combined the recipe from Facebook with the Thermomix Recipe book and came up with this.  Here's hoping it doesn't end up with us eating porridge for dinner instead.  :/

Edited later...  Oh yes!  Very tasty.  Surprisingly tasty.  

Ingredients:
  • 200g Leek, washed and roughly chopped
  • 1 clove Garlic, peeled
  • 2-3 Spring Onions, washed and chopped to long pieces
  • Butter
  • 700g Potatoes (2-3 large), peeled and cubed
  • 1 Swede, diced. (Optional)
  • 1 tab Vegetable Stock Concentrate
  • 700g Water
  • Cream and chopped chives to serve
Method:
  • Place Leeks, Spring Onions and Garlic into TMX and chop for 10 seconds on Speed 7
  • Add a little Butter and saute for 2 minutes on 100ºC on Speed 1
  • Add Potatoes, Stock, Water  and  cook for 25 minutes on 100ºC on Speed 1
  • Once cooked,  blend to smooth consistency by slowly going from Speed 1 to Speed 8 for 30 seconds.
  • Serve in bowls, top with cream and garnish with chopped chives.
Verdict:  What a surprising evening that was.  Ms C thought it was a great idea... but didn't like it in the end.  MsD thought it sounded horrible...  then had 2 bowls.  Mr frillypants also had 2 bowls and  Mr JR & Mr JA both had a go.    The ones I thought would love it,  didn't.  And vice versa.  I did make it too salty and so I've adjusted the recipe above.  (ie Removed salt and halved stock concentrate)  I expect without as much stock,  the colour will calm down.  It was very green!  And yummy!!!!

Tweeks:  I added a diced swede to the mix when I was trying to tone down the salt content... and it didn't change the flavour at all.  So,  go ahead and add swede for more hidden vegies.
In googling I found another with celery,  so add that too if you want.

    Sunday, July 17, 2011

    Old Fashioned Butter Biscuits

    Jam Drops and White Chocolate Chip biscuits
    Makes about 70 biscuits, so luckily these can be frozen to eat later.  This recipe is to use with a Cookie Press to make 'Spritz Cookies' or 'Pressed Cookies'.  But, the cookie press I was using (an Op Shop find for $3) was not up to the gruelling punishment I dished out.  So now I just roll those bikkies by the teaspoon full.  This recipe is for the basic butter biscuit,  which is yummy all by itself.  But you can make little changes as well,  which I'll list as I try them.

    You do not need to use baking paper or grease the tray as there is so much butter in the recipe. I use non-stick and regular aluminium trays without problem.

    Ingredients:
    • 3.5 cups (440g) Plain Flour
    • 1 tsp Baking Powder
    • 1.5 cups (340g) Butter, softened
    • 1 cup (220g) White Sugar
    • 1 egg
    • 2 tabs Milk
    • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
    Method:
    • In TMX, use butterfly to cream Butter and Sugar together,  speed 4, until light and fluffy (about 1 minute +)
    • Add Egg, Vanilla and Milk and beat again until well combined.
    • Remove butterfly
    • Combine Flour and Baking Powder in separate bowl
    • Turn TMX onto Speed 3-4 with the Measuring Cup out and gradually add the Flour mixture until it's all well combined.  (Depending on the day, room temp,  sometimes I need to do this in another, larger bowl with a spatula.)
    • Place biscuit mixture into another bowl so you don't scrape the TMX bowl with the spoon
    • Using a teaspoon or dessert spoon, shape mixture into balls that are smaller than golf balls and larger than Maltesers (Does that make sense???)
    • Place onto baking tray, allowing space for spreading
    • Cook in Moderate oven for about 15-20 minutes
    • Once cooked, leave on the tray for 2 minutes to cool slightly and then place onto a cooling rack, using a spatula or similar
    • Doing it too early will bend and break the biscuits and leaving them too long will allow them to stick to the tray.  I found when I did this, I put them back in the oven for about 1 minute which warmed them enough to slide off the tray.
    JAM DROPS

    Once you have put the balls of mixture onto the trays, make an indentation in the top with the handle of a wooden spoon, dipped in flour.  You can make this deepish, just be careful not to go through or break it sideways.  Using the pointiest teaspoon you have,  get a tiny bit of Pear Jam and fill the indentations to the top.  When you bake these, these will spread out and you'll have a lovely round of jam in the middle.

    WHITE CHOCOLATE CHIP

    Before creaming the butter, (or after removing mixture from TMX bowl) chop a handful or two of White Chocolate buttons in the TMX (Speed 6-7). Make this as rough or fine as you'd like.  Add this after the flour and combine well.

    CARAMEL

    Replace the white sugar with about 200g of Brown Sugar and proceed as usual.

    CINNAMON**

    This is strictly for the NON-Failsafers in the household.  Combine some Cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl and sprinkle on top of the biscuits after they've cooked about 5 minutes, and put back into the oven.

    ** Very High Salicylates

    Thursday, July 14, 2011

    Vegetable Stock Concentrate

    Vegetable Stock Concentrate
    Another one from the TMX cookbook (pg 17),  adapted to make it Failsafe.  Use this Stock Concentrate by the table spoon,  straight from a jar in the fridge.  As a rough guide,  1 tablespoon = 1 commercial stock cube.  The salt is its preservative.  If you decrease it (I have already decreased it by 1/3), so is the shelf-life reduced.  The leek 'head' is the greener top part of the leek I normally do not use.  But today I paid $5 per leek,  so darn it! I was going to get my money out of them!!!!!

    Ingredients:
    • 3 leek 'heads'
    • 250 g celery
    • 1-2 cloves garlic
    • 2-3 spring onions
    • 1 zucchini*, peeled
    • handful of parsley leaves
    • 100g cooking salt
    • 1 tab failsafe oil
    *Moderate Salicylates
    Method:
    • Wash thoroughly and roughly chop all vegies 
    • Throw all vegies into the TMX and chop for 10  seconds on Speed 6
    • Add salt and oil and then cook for 20 minutes on Varoma temperature on Speed 1.
    • Mix by slowly turning speed dial to Speed 6 then pulverising for 1 minute on Speed 9.
    • Store in refrigerator (or freezer in small lots)
    • Use to flavour soups, risottos, stews sauces etc