Thursday, March 29, 2012

Sharing some treats

Just wanted to share some of my recent treats.

 First up is this 1 person pizza. Yummy! Pizza is so easy to make. I generally use wheat flour to make the bottom so it's good for your digestive system. As a sauce I just use tomato puree, adding garlic and Italian herbs. I like the puree because I hate runny sauce on my pizza. Then some nice serrano-ham, some cheese and after it's baked, top it off with rucola lettuce. Yum!!

Plum Strawberry Pastries
 Plum season has started again, or at least they are selling them in the supermarket again. To make these sweet treats take a square of puff pastry and cut out two opposite corners. (Take a close look at the picture if this confuses you.) Prick a few holes in the pastry between the two cuts. Cut your plums in pieces and add some cut up strawberries. Sprinkle with sugar. If your plums and strawberries are really sweet you won't even need this, unless you like your pastries really sweet. Put a bit of the fruit lengthwise between those two cuts. Now fold the loose corners over the fruit. Lay all the pastries on a baking sheet on a wire rack. Scoot into the middle of the oven which you preheated to about 380 degrees (190 celsius). They'll stay in there for about 20 minutes. With 5 minutes to go you can sprinkle some coarse sugar over the top.
After I took them out of the oven I glazed the fruit with a bit of diluted raspberry jam. Just to make the top fruits a bit moist.

Plum pie (which tastes surprisingly like rhubarb pie)
I had a few plums which were threatening to turn bad so I made a pie. The crust is cookie dough, easy and yummy. I rolled it out and pushed it into a small tin (about 6 inches/ 16 cm) using the leftovers to make the wire top. The filling contains mostly plums, a handful of cranberries and a few blueberries. I added about a teaspoon of cornstarch just to bind those juices. You have to adjust this amount when your plums are really juicy and/or when you make a larger pie. I also added a crumb topping under the wire top. It's made of a handful of crushed walnuts, the same amount of oatmeal, some sugar (depending on your sweet tooth, I'm not a great sugar eater) and a bit of butter to bind the crumbs. You could add a little bit of juice if you have it, that will give it a little more fruity flavor but it's no biggy if you do not.

Bake temp is about 360 F (180 C) and bake time ?? hmmm don't really remember. I think it was 35 minutes. Just check once in a while. Fruity pies like these are done when you see some of those juices boiling up thickly at the edges. Take it out of the oven and leave it on a wire rack to cool. You need it to cool down considerably so the juices will set. If you have a hubby like mine, who wants to eat everything the moment it's made (flattering but not always handy ;) try to make it when he's not home hahaha. Or remember to put a deep enough plate or dish under the pie when you cut into it. If you are able to wait, wait until it is lukewarm. That will give you a pie that can hold itself but is still that nice warm out of the oven taste. And otherwise eat it at room temp, also very nice!

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