Cheesecake

Gaby’s Cheesecake

Desserts, Memory Lane

Spanish Version

When I was in my twenties I turn myself into dog breeding, this gave me the knowledge about dogs, breeds, behaviors and the worst thing a dog can have, the owners!

From that group of breeders and owners I have Gabriela, descendent of a German mother and a Venezuelan father, she has that dark twisted German humor and strong will and the party spirit of a Venezuelan, once on her kitchen she told me this cheesecake recipe that I promise not to ever reveal.

However, keeping my promise, I have made a few adjustments to improve the caloric content and for the shortage of some of the original ingredients, its done with passion fruit, but you may chance the fruit depending of what you like or the season, but be aware that not all the fruits have the same liquid content.

One of the hardest things of writing this recipe was make it without brands so you can do it anywhere in the world, so please try it and let me know!

INGREDIENTS

For the crust
225 g graham crackers crushed
100 g unsalted margarine

For the filling

250 g unsalted ricotta
395 g condensed milk (1 large can)
1 cup passion fruit pulp
15 g flavorless gelatin

PREPARATION

Preheat the oven to 350 ºF

In a food processor put the crushed graham crackers and process until obtaining a fine powder

On a pan melt the margarine and remove from heat

Mix the graham cracker powder it’s the melted butter in the pan and then pour and compact over a pie dish, this will be your pie crust so try to have it as even as possible

Bake until slightly brown.

Remove from oven

To make the passion fruit pulp remove the pulp for the fruits and blend it without adding water on a blender.

Pass it throug a strainer so all the seed separate from it and just have the “juice”

Wash the blender jar so it doesn’t have any seeds left and then put back the passion fruit juice, add the ricotta, the condensed milk and blend until obtain a creamy silky mix, add the gelatin and blend for approximately 2 minutes.

Pour the cream over the still hot crust, and let it cool for at leas 1 hour then place it into the refrigerator for at least 2 hours until the cream is completely solid.

Portion it and share the joy!

There is many kinds of flavorless gelatins the vegetables and the animal ones, when you use any flavorless gelatin read on the label if it can be used with fruits, some gelatin made of colapis (fish tail) don’t work well with some fruits like the enzymes of the pineapple.
Cocoa and cardamom Sorbet

Cocoa and Cardamom Part 2

Desserts, Easy to make

Spanish Version

A few weeks ago I posted the Cocoa and Cardamom Ice Cream, now I decided to use the same flavor to make it a sorbet.

The difference between Ice cream and sorbet it’s the base, mean while the ice cream is made out with a custard base made of dairy cream and egg yolk the sorbet has a water base, which make it egg-free and dairy-free which makes it an ideal option for lactose intolerant diet.

Cardamom, as I said on the ice cream recipe is considered one of the most expensive spices in the world, and bring to the sorbet a fresh taste

The cocoa that i use for this recipe is Chocolate Tea and to be honest with you, I was concern to publish this because this blog’s main idea is to create recipes with ingredients easily to find anywhere, however I found it on Amazon. I discover Chocolate tea a few years ago on the supermarket and the name was pretty intriguing, it’s the roasted cocoa’s almond shell. it contains all the antioxidant benefits of cocoa and a natural chocolate flavor creating an infusion low fat and the rich chocolate taste.

Yield: 6 Ice cream Balls

INGREDIENTS

For Simple Syrup
1 cup water
1 cup sugar

For the Infusion
3 Cardamom pods mashed

2 Tbsp. Chocolate Tea
2 Cups of water

Special Equipment: Ice Cream Maker 

PREPARATION

Simple Syrup

On a sauce pan bring to boil water and sugar until the sugar crystals are completely disolved

Remove from burner and let it cool

Put it on the fridge for at least 3 to 4 hours

The Infusion

On a saucepan bring to boil water, cocoa and cardamom for 10 minutes aprox.

Remove form burner and let it cool

Pass the infusion over a strainer and discard all solids.

Refrigerate the infusion for at least 4 hours.

Sorbet

Mix the simple syrup and infusion, and freeze following the manufacturer’s instructions form your Ice Cream Maker.

Remove from machine and put on a covered container on the freezer for at least 3 hours

Nutritional Facts (per portion)

Calories 128
Carbs 33 g
Fat 0g
Protein 0 g
Sodium 0 mg
Sugar 33 g

Marble Cake

Butter marble cake

Desserts

Spanish Version

One of the first cakes made from scratch is this home made butter marble poundcake, the recipe comes from an INDULAC’s recipe calendar from 1989, it asks for a few products produced by the company at that time as Milky brand milk or Rika butter, both brands far gone of the Venezuelan market. However the recipe is very usable, easy to do and has that delicious butter taste that I love, this recipe has some tweaks on a few ingredients to improve flavor and quality.

 

INGREDIENTS:

1 tbsp baking powder

3 cups of all porpouse flour  

380 g salted butter 

2 cups of sugar

6 eggs

1 cup of milk 

6 tbsp pure cocoa powder 

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 350 °F

In a bowl sift the flour and the baking powder

In another bowl (it can be done with the electric mixer) cream the butter and sugar, keep whisking and add the eggs one by one, alternating with the milk and sifted flour.

In baking mold buttered and and floured pour half the preparation.

To the other half add the cocoa and mix to have an uniform color.

Pour this mix over the other and with the tip of a knife mix doing twirling movements.

Bake for approximately an hour to 350 °F and unmold before completely cool. 

 
Cocoa and cardamom Ice Cream

Cocoa and Cardamom

Desserts

Spanish Version

Cardamom is an spice originated from India, it has a strong, unique taste, with an intensely aromatic, resinous fragrance, in fact it’s one of the most expensive spices per gram, and for me, delicious.

It’s used to make infusions, as ingredient for rice and cous cous to aromatize coffee, as natural remedy for gastric aches and even it’s said that have some afrodisiac effect.

I made this recipe for some friends that came over, the rich chocolate taste it’s complemented perfectly with the freshness that the cardamom brings to it.

INGREDIENTS

1 2/3 cups heavy cream
4 cardamom pods, crushed
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup sugar, divided
3 tablespoons 100% coca powder
4 large egg yolks

Special Equipment: an ice cream maker


PREPARATION

Bring cream and cardamon just to a simmer in a small heavy saucepan, then cover and let steep about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring milk, 1/2 cup sugar, cocoa and a pinch of salt to a simmer in a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring.

Whisk together yolks and remaining 1/4 cup sugar in a large bowl, then add milk mixture in a slow stream, whisking. Return mixture to medium saucepan and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until mixture coats back of spoon and registers 175°F on an instant-read thermometer (do not let boil). Immediately strain custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a metal bowl, then quick-chill by setting bowl in an ice bath and stirring occasionally until cool, about 15 minutes.

Strain cardamom cream through fine-mesh sieve into custard, pressing on solids. Continue to chill in ice bath until custard is very cold, then freeze in ice cream maker. Transfer to an airtight container and put in freezer to harden, about 1 hour.

Tamarid Sorbet

Tamarind Sorbet

Desserts

Spanish Version

When the working life begins your vision of the world expands, because your working companions have different background that yours, it was 1994 and I was already working, I remember one of am colleagues, Betty, was obsessed with this song called “Jugo de tamarindo”, Tamarind juice, from a Latin artist called Kinito Mendez, i remember that song playing incessantly on the radio and she was happy dancing to that rhythm, music that I have probably never got to listen staying at home.

However, that song was about tamarind juice, and every time I think of tamarind I remember Betty and the summer of 94, there’s nothing more refreshing and delicious than a tamarind juice, right?
Well, this is a different take on tamarind, also refreshing for a hot afternoon

INGREDIENTS
Simple syrup

1 cup water
1 cup sugar

Tamarind

150 gr tamarind or tamarind paste

1 cup water

PREPARATION

Simple syrup, in a saucepan bring to boil the water and sugar until sugar is completely dissolved, then por that content in a heat proof cup and let cool and then chill on the refrigerator, this can be made ahead.

Tamarind

If you get the fruit, which will be ideal depending on the season, take away the shells and in a bowl, soak the pulp on half a cup of water for over 30 minutes. If you don’t get the fruit use sugar free tamarind paste.

Whisk the soaked pulp until dissolving most of the fiber in the water.

Over a cup strain the liquid pressing to pass most of it over, then take it back to the bowl and and the other half cup of water, whisk until the rest of the pulp is dissolved, in this stage you may see the tamarind seeds, repeat straining and toss away the fiber left and the seeds.

Sorbet

Chill both mixtures for at least two hours… This can be made ahead.

Once real cold mix both preparations on the ice cream maker following the equipment instructions.

Once done transfer to a airtight container and take it to the freezer for at least 2 hours to harden.

Nutella cookies

Nutella Cookies

Desserts, Easy to make

Spanish Version

Nutella is a delicious chocolate-hazelnut spread, however, it has a high sugar and fat content, that’s why it has to be eaten carefully.

The ingredients list for April 2014 are:

Sugar, being the first ingredient it can be estimated to higher than 55%

Vegetable oil, The vegetable oil is palm oil, a semi-solid fat that’s needed to give Nutella its spreadable texture. Ferrero says at their website that they were using a hydrogenated oil until a couple of years ago but switched to palm oil to cut back on the trans fat in 2006. Palm oil is free of trans fat but is still high in saturated fat so it’s not good for you.

Hazelnuts (13%) being one of the product promises, the European community forces to producers to specify the quantity on the product. The hazelnuts offer that delicious nutty taste.

Cocoa powder (7,4%), for the same reason of the hazelnuts we know the actual content on the formula, cocoa is rich on antioxidants which bring color and a the chocolate taste.

Nonfat milk solids (8,7%), it’s added to increase the protein levels and keep on with the promess of the product that contains milk.

Emulsifier, it uses soy lecithin, a common emulsifier that keeps the sugar, oil, nuts and cocoa nicely blended and stops them separating out during the months on the shelves.

Flavour, it’s used vanillin, which is an artificial flavor and aroma mix that imitates vanilla, but is less expensive to use.

Resuming Nutella is a 30% oil and 55 % sugar mix with some nuts! and chocolate.

Justly because that oil and sugar mix it s a great base to make cookies, Nutella substitutes fat and sugar, so with all this said:

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup Nutella
1/2 cup flour
1 egg

PREPARATION

Preheat the oven at 360 °F
In a bowl mix all the ingredients until make an uniform dough.
Separate the dough into small discs depending on the size you want the cookie, and place the on a cookie sheet.
Bake for 20 minutes
Remove from oven, let them cool and enjoy.

Oatmeal chocolate-nut muffins

Oatmeal chocolate nut muffins

Desserts, Healthy

Spanish version

Muffins instead of cupcakes, are relatively healthy. It’s not too sweet, is perhaps made with whole wheat flour or some fiber content, and is more likely to be loaded with fruit than candy. A muffin can also be savory instead of sweet. The texture is usually dryer and slightly denser than cupcakes.

With all this said, This oatmeal-nut-muffins turned out to be delicious, mostly because anything with chocolate on it -on this case 70% cacao dark chocolate – it’s delicious! Toasted oats and nuts bring a fragrant great texture, a great source of fiber, which make it a complete pre-training snack.

INGREDIENTS

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon double-acting baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 large egg

1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1/4 cup milk

1/3 cup rolled oats, toasted lightly

1/3 cup walnuts, chopped and toasted lightly

80 grams 70% cocoa chocolate, chopped

Can be prepared in 45 minutes or less.

PREPARATION

In a pan over mid-high place the oatmeal and nuts, heat and stir constantly until a slight toast, this will bring up flavor and aroma, then pour on a colander an sift to remove excessive dust, and let it cool down.

Preheat oven to  400 °F, and place rack on the middle.

In a bowl whisk together the flour, the sugar, the baking powder, and the salt.

In another bowl whisk together the egg, the butter, and the milk, stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until the mixtures are just combined. 

Stir in the oats, the walnuts, and the chocolate chips. 

Divide the batter among 6 paper-lined 1/2-cup muffin tins and bake the muffins  for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean, this may be complicated the first time around because chocolate will be melted, so try to prick on the batter side.

Transfer the muffins to a rack, let them cool you may serve them warm.

Nutritional facts (approximated for each muffin)

Calories 326

Carbs 33 g

Fat 20 g

Protein 6 g

Sodium 200 mg

Sugar 13 g