Citrus Flavours

Citrus Flavours
Photo by Scott Bauer

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This blog has been designed to enlighten the world to sweet and savoury cusine. Personally, my favourite ingredient in cooking is citrus fruits, particually lemons, so I will try to inspire your inner chef to share the interesting flavour of lemons in the most indulgent cupcakes, muffins, cakes, slices, cookies and of course savoury dishes. My collection of recipes can be applied to any situation; formal or informal, in any case they are delicious and will interest your guests! Enjoy preparing and sharing the following recipes for what will be a memorable gathering with friends and family for any occassion.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Lenten Season

Painting by Sabina Becker

Lent is now upon us, and its meaning and purpose are once again relived. This is the time when Jesus fasted for 40 days, and today we follow in his footsteps. Lent is a time for people to stop and reflect, preparing ourselves for the Easter celebration. It is also a time when we show our love to the Holy Trinity by giving up something that is most dear or embracing a new action for the duration of 40 days.

This fasting is not meant to be an easy task and begins today, Ash Wednesday. There are two acts that are repeated on this day to mark the beginning of Lent; eating no meat (also on Good Friday) and receiving an ash imprint of the cross. The ash cross marked on our foreheads is a symbol that explains we are all dust and will be returned to dust when we are born to eternal life.

For this years Lenten duration, I have decided to give up something that is really hard and that I love dearly. This is why, from today and for the next 40 days, I will not baking or eating sweets. I strive to achieve this goal, not back down. It will be an extremely hard and devastating task to complete, however, with your support and prayers, I will succeed triumphantly.

May God be ever closer to us at this time as we complete individual sacrifices in memory of the many sacrifices He made for us.


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Orange Cake Bites

Recipe and Images by Yasmin

I was so excited about preparing this sweet snack because I invented the recipe. What gave me this idea was founded by my mother for two reasons. One, I was originally baking a cake for her birthday and it turned out as a flop - but it still tasted fantastic, too good to waste. Which leads to reason number two, I saved the cakes and turned them into little balls of goodness, as my mother suggested. To do this I gathered a basic idea for additional ingredients from an ancient and falling apart cookbook (which is no longer in print!), called Nmaa Cooks.

This recipe was an experiment but turned out to be a success! Remember that you can always salvage previous errors in cooking, the bin doesn't need to be fed!! Another example of a way to salvage this cake catastrophy would be to make a triffel, but if you decide to do this be sure that the cake is spongy enough and not a complete flop (like mine!). I encourage everyone to have a go and see what you can do with a bit of a mess, have fun! HINT: Make sure with this recipe that the mixture isn't sloppy or too moist, otherwise it will fall apart. If it is too moist then simply add more almond meal or, if none is left, and enough quick cook oats and oatbran to allow the mixture to stick firmly together.

For cake pieces:
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cups plain flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup milk 
For snack mixture:
  • 470g orange cake (made from ingredients above and method below)
  • 100g sugar
  • 115g almond meal (more if needed)
  • 2 tblsps hot apricot jam
  • 1-2 tblsps orange juice
  • rind of half an orange
  • desicated coconut, to coat
  • oatbran and/or quick cook oats (if needed to combine mixture)
For Cake: cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy, in a large glass bowl. Slowly add whole eggs, one at a time, beating well after each one. Stir in vanilla extract. In another bowl, mix flour with baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture to the creamed ingredients, while alternatively adding milk. Grease and flour two round cake tins and evenly divide mixture between both. Cook in an oven at 180'C fan-forced for 20-30 minutes (longer if needed). Remove from oven and turn onto wired racks to cool. Then refridgerate for at least one day.

For snack mixture: Use hands to crumble cake mixture into a big bowl, until it looks like bread crumbs. Using a wooden spoon, combine sugar, almond meal and orange rind to the cake. Stir in jam and juice until thoroughly combined. At this stage if mixture is too sloppy or moist add as much oatbran and quick cooking oats as required, until firm. In spoon fulls, roll mixture into balls and then roll in desicated coconut to coat. Place balls into a tupperwear container and refrigerate for 24hrs until hardened.