nutella croissants

Puff pastry is one of those ingredients that i always have in my freezer. The store bought kind is perfect and fairly inexpensive. This buttery, flaky pastry is perfect for almost any sweet or savoury dish, from pies to galettes, pinwheels and tarts, there are so many options!
Breakfast is an important part of my day and I like to keep it interesting. These little croissants are so simple to make and can be made the night before and simply popped into the oven the next morning.
This may not be the healthiest of breakfast options but it sure is tasty and the kids will love it!! Everything in moderation, of course.

Ingredients | serves 4 | easy
2 rolls puff pastry, thawed
Nutella spread (almost 1 cup)
1 Egg, beaten
1T milk

Method
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Grease a baking tray with cooking spray.
Lightly flour the work surface and spread out the pastry. Roll the pastry out to ensure it is flat, smooth & even.
Using a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut the pastry into three large rectangles. Then cut each rectangle into two long triangles. Each pastry sheet should give you 6 triangles.
Place a spoonful of Nutella on the widest end of the triangle and then spread it along the pastry, leaving a small border untouched.
Beginning at the wide end of the triangle, gently roll the pastry into a croissant shape,
Carefully place the croissants onto the baking tray and lightly tuck in the edges, forming the shape of a “U”.

Repeat this with the second sheet of pastry.
Beat the egg and milk together and lightly brush the top of the croissants.
Place the tray into the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, until the pastry is beautifully golden and crisp.
Serve warm.

From my kitchen to yours, with love x



chocolate & banana french toast

I do love a good breakfast and some days i like to over indulge. My affair with bread is ever so passionate and my liking for dark chocolate ongoing.
When i have a little extra time in the morning i like to whip up this combination of bread and chocolate to sink my teeth into and I enjoy every bite. I savour each bite. And I don’t feel guilty.
An easy recipe and the custard can be prepared the night before, saving you time in the morning to focus on other important tasks before running out the door.
Similar to traditional French toast, with the addition of cocoa & dark chocolate, this breakfast will have you return for more. And the kids will certainly love it too!
I love topping the toast with banana for some natural sweetness. And really – who doesn’t like the combination of chocolate & banana…?

ingredients | serves 4 | easy
8 slices bread (i prefer white)
2T butter
3 eggs
1C milk
1t vanilla essence / paste
3T cocoa powder, sifted
1T castor sugar
pinch of salt
50g dark chocolate, grated / finely chopped
4 ripe bananas, sliced diagonally
1/2C nuts, toasted
maple syrup
icing sugar, for dusting
plain yogurt, optional

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
In a large, shallow dish, combine the eggs, milk, vanilla essence, cocoa, sugar & salt. Whisk until well combined.
Place the bread into the chocolate custard and soak for about two minutes.
Spoon the grated / chopped chocolate onto four of the slices.
Carefully sandwich the slices together making four sandwiches.
Heat the butter in a large ovenproof skillet and carefully lower the bread into the skillet. Toast the bread for about three to four minutes a side.
Remove the skillet from the heat. Top each sandwich with the sliced banana and bake in the oven for about five minutes.
Drizzle the maple syrup over the toast as soon as it comes out of the oven and top with the toasted nuts. Dust with icing sugar.
Top with plain yogurt if desired and serve immediately.

From my kitchen to yours, with love x







asparagus, poached egg & hollandaise sauce

this simple, yet elegant and great tasting dish is always a show stopper. less is more and that is exactly what this dish offers. simple, blanched asparagus, poached eggs and a thick, rich, buttery hollandaise…my idea of simple perfection.
i love serving this as a light, easy starter or when i serve it for breakfast i add salmon ribbons to it. smoked mackerel and kippers are also a hit with this dish and don’t forget the crusty bread to dunk into the sauce!!

asparagus
butter
salt
pepper
eggs
white wine vinegar
parmesan (garnish)
chives (garnish)

hollandaise sauce
4 egg yolks
pinch cayenne pepper
1/2c butter, melted
juice of half a lemon
1/2tsp fine salt
pinch white pepper

pour water into a large bowl and add a few blocks of ice to it. set aside.
bring water to boil in a large skillet. lower the asparagus into the boiling water and leave to cook for about 2.- 3 minutes, depending on the thickness. remove the asparagus from the skillet using tongs and plunge it into the iced water. drain on kitchen towel paper. set aside.

in a stainless steel mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice vigorously until light, thick and creamy use a double boiler or place the mixing bowl over a saucepan / small pot containing barely simmering water. (the bottom of the bowl should not touch the water).
continue to whisk rapidly for about 30 seconds, taking care not to that the egg does not scramble. (this will happen if it gets too hot.). slowly drizzle the butter into the egg mixture while whisking, until the sauce is thickened and almost doubled in volume.
remove from the heat, add the cayenne, salt & pepper and whisk through.
set aside.

add about one tablespoon of white wine vinegar to a saucepan filled with water and bring it to the boil.
break the eggs into small ramekins. create a vortex in the centre of the water, add the eggs, two at a time. once the eggs are in the water, turn the heat down to a simmer. poach to your desired doneness.
remove the eggs from the water and drain on kitchen towel paper.

to assemble
heat butter in a frying pan and toss the asparagus for about one minute. season with salt & pepper.
place the asparagus on a plate. top with the poached egg and the hollandaise sauce.
garnish with shaved parmesan & chives.

from my kitchen to yours, with love x


chocolate crepes

i don’t usually celebrate valentine’s day. i feel love is meant to be celebrated every day, not only once a year. but this year is different. perhaps because now i have a little girl who loves food just as much as i do. and what better way to start my day than getting up early and baking crepes with my 9 month old!
these decadent little treats are very moreish indeed. the sweet syrup compliments the almost sour taste of the banana and the nuts add a lovely crunch. only after taking my pictures did i spoon some whipped cream on top. that made it even tastier. even more edible. even more enjoyable. even more rich.
i used lindt dark chocolate but any dark chocolate will do. you can whisk the mixture by hand but i found that a hand held mixer or blender works a little better as it breaks the chocolate down a little more.

makes about 12 crepes |
200g flour
40g dark chocolate, grated
1 egg
40g muscovado sugar
1.5tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tsp vanilla essence
pinch salt
250ml milk
liberal amount of butter
large bananas, thinly sliced diagonally
1/3c slivered almonds
whipped cream of double cream, optional
mint leaves, garnish

for the syrup
125ml maple syrup
125ml cream
125g dark chocolate, roughly chopped

how to do it
combine all of the ingredients, except the butter, in a mixing bowl or jug of your blender. blend until combined taking care not to over mix the batter. (if you feel you want a runnier batter, add an additional 50ml milk.)
heat about a tablespoon of butter in a non stick pan. spoon about 1/3 cup of batter into the pan per crepe. cook until you notice bubbles on the surface. turn and cook for about 45 seconds more. set aside and repeat until you have used all of the batter.
in a small sauce pan, heat the cream and maple syrup together. once warm, pour the mixture over the chocolate. let stand for 3 minutes and then mix with a whisk until smooth.
pour a little of the sauce onto the plate. place one crepe on top of the sauce. top with 3 slices of banana and continue until you have three layers, ending with sliced banana.
pour a little more of the sauce over the side of the top crepe. sprinkle the crepes with nuts.
top with cream if using and garnish with mint leaves.
serve warm.

happy valentine’s day!
from my kitchen to yours, with love x


vegetable frittata

i love going through my fridge and using what i have to create a great meal. and this is just another delicious fridge forage meal that serves well as breakfast with warm crusty bread and lots of butter. or as a light lunch with a herby salad. i added some ricotta cheese for more creamy goodness. to jazz things up a little more you can also drizzle some truffle oil over the bake when it comes out of the oven. frittata is so easy. best served hot straight from the oven although the cold leftovers are really tasty. and it makes a great lunch box snack!
in my view there are no rules when it comes to frittata except that it shouldn’t stick to the pan…


ingredients | serves 4-6

2tbs olive oil
3tbs butter
1/3 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
2 courgette, sliced
1c mushrooms, sliced
1/2c kernel corn
1/2 tub (130g) ricotta
pinch chilli flakes (optional)
1tbs fresh thyme or 1/2 tbs dried thyme
good pinch of salt
black pepper
fresh parsley, roughly chopped
5 eggs
1/3c cream / milk

preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. heat the butter & oil together in a medium sized skillet. (to fit the oven). spray the sides of the skillet with non-stick spray or wipe with an oil coated piece of kitchen towel paper.
sauté the onions & garlic until glossy. add the courgette & mushrooms and cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until just cooked. about 8 minutes. season the mixture with the chilli flakes, thyme, salt & pepper. add the corn and stir through and cook for two more minutes.
meanwhile mix the eggs & cream (or milk) together and season with a pinch of salt & pepper. turn the heat down and pour the eggs mixture over the vegetables, tilting the pan to ensure the vegetables are evenly coated. spoon dollops of ricotta into the egg mixture.
cook for about two minutes until you see the edges starting to cook. place the skillet into the hot oven and bake for about ten – 12 minutes, until set.
(the middle of the frittata should be firm).
leave to cool for 5 minutes. place a board over the pan. turn the frittata out by flipping the pan over. now place another board over the frittata and flip over once more.
garnish with the fresh parsley, slice and serve.

from my kitchen to yours, with love x