28 July 2009

Mini brunch brioches

Here is a lighter brioche that can be enjoyed with sweet or savory food in-lieu of bread.
It is best to make this over 2 days, day one prepping the dough, day 2 shaping and rising.
Alternately you can prepare the dough in the morning and shape, rise and bake in the evening.

Mini brioches
For 43 brioches
3 Tbsp water
30 gr fresh yeast / 15 gr / 4 tsp active dry yeast
75 gr / 1/3 cup heap sugar
525 gr / 3 & 1/3 cup bread flour
1.5 tsp salt
6 eggs
255 gr / 2 sticks & 2 Tbsp unsalted butter at room temperature
43 mini tartlet molds

Day 1
Measure the water and mix the yeast + 1/2 tsp sugar, set aside.
Mix flour, remaining sugar and salt then add eggs one at a time mixing well between each.
Add the yeast mixture to the dough and continue kneading for 10mn to allow flour to absorb liquids and the gluten to develop.
Let the dough rest for 15mn in the bowl.
Cut the butter in small pieces and add them little by little while kneading for another 10mn or so until all the butter has been incorporated (it might take a little longer, that's OK)
Place the bowl in the fridge overnight (minimum 8 hours) to allow the flavours to develop.

Day 2
Roll out the dough and make 1 turn (as if you were folding a letter), do this twice.
As the dough is sticky using plastic wrap to roll it in between will help greatly.
Then roll it out one more time about 1 inch thick and cut the dough in small pieces weighing approx 30 gr each.
Shape each piece in a ball tucking the corners under and placing them in little tartlet molds.
Let them rise covered with a cotton towel for 4 hours at room temperature away from drafts.
Place them in cold oven and bake for 25mn or so at 350 F/175 C.

You can make them a day ahead of serving and warm them up for 5mn at 350 F.

27 July 2009

A summer fare...

What better excuse than a birthday to organise a little get together and share some home made food?
Top it up with fantastic summer weather and you got it all!

On the menu of this simple brunch:

Vegetarian quiche

Crab quiche

Home smoked Alaska salmon - Poached Alaska salmon

Grilled vegetable terrine

Garden baby greens salad

Mini brioche (a lighter version than this one) - Check back for a future post with this recipe

Cheese board
And to conclude a raspberry bavarois/bavarois aux framboises - Check back for a future post with this recipe

23 July 2009

Raspberried out!

With this hot weather we have been experiencing for the past 2 months the raspberry bushes are full of fruits, so I made my liquor again (pictured) and tried a new by product of the wonderful raspberries:

Raspberry vinegar


600 gr fruits
600 ml white wine vinegar

600 ml cider vinegar

6 Tbsp sugar
A couple of big clean jars


Crush the berries in a food mill or with a fork, pour the vinegars and sugar over, mix all and fill the jars.

Let the jars rest in a dark place shaking them occasionally for minimum a week or until you decide the taste is good enough.

Filter the mixture through a fine mesh sieve and fill a few bottles.

Enjoy with a nice summer salad or all year round to remind you of the summer flavours.

Lucky shot of a tree frog

13 July 2009

What's for dinner?...

For the past couple of month with the good weather I have spent so much time outside that my inspiration for cooking has taken a back seat, yesterday we finally had substantial rain fall (which is great for my garden and for my creativity in the kitchen) so we spent a few hours at the Seattle center for the Bastille day celebration and when we returned home I wanted to have a nice but easy dinner and after looking in the fridge inspiration finally struck me and I created this very nice and super quick meal.

Roasted chicken with mango sauce
For 2
2 skinless chicken breasts
1 ripe mango
1/2 lemon (zest and juice)
2 Tbsp honey
1 rosemary twig
Salt and pepper to taste

Pre-heat the oven to 390 F / 200 C
Place the chicken breast in an oven proof dish.
Peel the mango, reserve a few strips for serving and using a knife scrape all the "flesh" and juice surrounding the pit, cover the chicken with it.
Zest and juice the lemon over the chicken & mango.
Pour 1/2 Tbsp honey over each chicken breast and the remaining 1 Tbsp in the dish, add a little water (approx. 1/2 to 1 cup - 125 to 250 ml), sprinkle salt and pepper to taste, keep in mind that pepper gets stronger as it cooks/bakes. Cut rosemary twig in half and place each piece on the chicken.
Place dish in pre-heated oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes untill juices run transparent.
You want the top of the chicken to be a little browned and the mango/honey/lemon to be slightly caramelised. By that time the water should have partially evaporated and form a sauce.

I served this with quinoa, it is a very versatile gluten free grain that I have been using recently. A nice alternative to rice, cooks in 15mns.