Saturday, October 15, 2011

Cherry tomato pizza margherita

and her smile brings light to even the darkest corner...

I have become a 'collector' of sorts; not of winged creatures nor paper stamps, but of my child's smiles. Their worth is un-quantifiable and their effect undeniably enigmatic, as somehow, despite even the roughest colic-riddled night, one brief grin from her in the morning when I awake seems to pale every frustration in comparison. I fear, I truly would forgive her anything for the price of a single smile.

My days literally revolve around my daughter, she has become the Sun to my Earth and I have barely a moment betwixt to do anything other than cater to her whims. I did however find myself with the tiniest slice and relished the chance to visit my lonely kitchen covered in a dust of neglect. I can't tell you how wonderful it felt to be dicing tomatoes and plucking leaves of emerald basil whilst fragments of spring sunshine fell upon my shoulders. And as this recipe only took ten minutes of my time I soon had my little one back in my arms, bestowing upon me more of those precious smiles.

ease: 5/5.
prep time: 10mins.
cooking time: 15 (I used a storebought base).
total: 25mins.

taste: 4/5. Best margherita I have had.
I love pizza. And just like the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles my favourite pizza is a cheese pizza (or as we call them down under, Margheritas). To me, nothing beats cheese and tomatoes with a hint of herb on a bread base. This recipe takes it up a notch.

The tart sweetness of the cherry tomatoes and garlic (which I cooked with the tomatoes to soften its bite) works beautifully with the gorgeous aniseed-hit from the fennel seed, fiery chili pepper, fragrant basil and finally the salty, stringy cheese. I served mine atop a gluten-free base (storebought to save time), but I imagine it would be even better on a homemade one. I loved this so much I was death-staring my husband like a hungry dog whilst he was eating his last piece.

I only had 250g of cherry tomatoes and it wasn't enough, the recipe calls for 350g which sounds about right. I would double the garlic though.

would I make it again: Yes.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

S'mores chocolate pots

It is astonishing how quickly one learns to adapt to being one-armed.

As my little bundle seems to wake every time I try to lay her down I have had to complete errands one-handed whilst she happily sleeps in the other. Granted, this rules out quite a few tasks, but some, such as stirring a pot, are very do-able; typing this post with only my left-hand is another.

Having reached the point where all my nightly dreams revolved around the consumption of epic portions of every kind of dessert imaginable I knew I had to make something before I'd wake up to a half eaten pillow...

The moment I saw this recipe I knew it was the one to break my dessert-sabbatical. There was something about whipping the eggwhites into satiny peaks that felt like slipping into a pair of comfy jeans. As I ran a fingertip through its billowing clouds and licked my 'snowcapped' finger I thought to myself -  'it's good to be back.'

ease: 4/5.
prep time: 30mins.
chilling time: 2hours.
total: 2 hours & 30mins.

taste: 4.5/5. Like a campfire at home.

These pots of silken chocolate laced with espresso topped with fluffy, sweet meringue kissed by the flame are incredibly delicious. The sweet meringue truly is reminiscent of creamy soda-ish marshmallows and balances out the seductively dark smooth chocolate; the touch of smokiness from the scorching tops it off perfectly. Eat beneath a woolly blanket, in front of a fireplace, under a full moon's light for the indoor-campfire experience.

I would skip coffee next time as I used a 70% chocolate which when paired with the coffee added a bit too much bitterness for me.

Because of bubs I didn't have enough time to make the graham cracker -  next time!

This made 4 servings.

would I make it again: Yes.