Babka from Yotam Ottolenghi

Hey folks!

I'm back with a dessert (that are becoming pretty scarce on my blog).
But it's not your common dessert. No it's again a recipe from one of favourite cookbooks, namely Jerusalem from Ottolenghi and Tammimi.
I already made another recipe that you will find here.

Let's jump right into this tested and approved recipe!

For the dough you will need (makes two cakes):

530 g plain flour

100 g caster sugar

2 tsp fast-action dried yeast

3 large free-range eggs

120 ml water

1/3 tsp salt

150 g salted butter (at room temperature, cut in little cubes)

Sunflower oil for greasing

For the chocolate filling:

50 g icing sugar

30 g cocoa powder

130 g melted dark chocolate

120 g melted unsalted butter

100 g almonds (pecans in the original recipe)

2 tbsp caster sugar

For the syrup:

260 g caster sugar

160 ml water

Start off by making the dough. Place the flour, sugar, yeast in a mixer bowl. Stir everything on LOW speed for about 1 minute. Add gradually the eggs and water. Increase the speed to medium and mix it for 3 minutes until the dough comes together. Add the salt. Start adding the butter.
Continue mixing for 10 minutes (medium speed) until you obtain a smooth, elastic and shiny dough. While your mixing your dough you will find yourself scraping down the dough of the sides of the bowl.

Brush a bowl with some sunflower oil and place your dough in it. Cover with cling film. Let rise (in the fridge) for at least half a day or overnight.

Grease some tins with some sunflower oil and line the bottom with a piece of greaseproof paper.
Divide your dough in two.

For the filling you need to mix together the icing sugar, cocoa powder, melted chocolate and butter.
Roll the dough out on a lightly floured (I used greaseproof paper) into a rectangle. Spread half the chocolate mixture over the rectangle. Sprinkle half of the almonds (or pecans) on top of the chocolate then sprinkle over half the caster sugar.
Brush some water over the end that is the furthest away from you. Roll up the rectangle like a roulade.

Now cut the roulade in two (lenghtwise).
Now start to "twist" the two sites. I can assure you that is part is the messiest one (but in the end it's worth it). Now place your twisted dough in your baking tins. 
Cover it with a damp towel and let it rise for at least one hour at room temperature.

Once the rising time is almost over, you can pre-heat your oven at 190°. Bake for about 30 minutes in your pre-heated oven. Check it although after about 25 minutes. 

While the babka is baking, make your syrup. Bring the sugar and water to a simmer until the sugar dissolves, remove it then from the heat. 
Once your babka is baked, take it out and brush the syrup immediately over it. 
Let it cool in the baking tin. Once cooled, dig in I would say!

Until next time!



Ornella's Burrito's

I'm back with an all-time favorite.
My sister always asks to make my (even if I say it myself) famous burrito's.
It takes some work and time, but is SO worth it.
I took major inspiration from an restaurant in Brussels called Pablo's, that sadly no longer exists today.
One a side note it's also quite healthy.

For 6 hungry people you will need

For the marinated chicken

1 kilo chicken breasts
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp chili (add less if you don't like it too spicy)
2 tbsp liquid honey
5 tbsp olive oil
A pinch of salt

For the tomato sauce:

1 tbsp olive oil
A little bit of butter
1 sliced onion
1 pinch of salt and some grounded black pepper
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp cumin (add more to taste)
1 fresh bay leaf
Some cinnamon
1 glove of garlic
Some chili to taste (don't add if you don't like spicy food)
700 g passata (I used Mutti) or 800 g canned tomatoes 

Guacamole : recipe will follow


6 wraps

Start off by marinate your chicken.
Cut your chicken in little pieces. Put them in a bowl. Add the spices, olive oil and honey. Give it a good stir. Let it marinate for at least one hour (in the fridge).

Now make your tomato sauce. Melt the butter in a large sauce pan. Add the olive oil and heat it up. Add now the onion, sugar and the spices. "Fry" until the onion starts the soften. Add the garlic. And add in the end the passata. Let it simmer for at least 20 minutes. Now season your sauce to taste.

When the chicken has been marinating for quite a time. You can start grilling it.

Now it's time to assemble everything!!

Pour some tomato sauce on the bottom of your oven dish

Take your wrap and add some chicken and tomato sauce, fold the wrap over the filling. 

Do the same with the remaining 5 wraps and cover them with tomato sauce

Bake for about 15 minutes in a pre-heated oven (180°).

While it bakes in the oven, cook your rice and make a quick pico de gallo. 

Serve everything on table

Serve everything (burrito's, pico de Gallo, guacamole, sour cream and rice) on the table

Without further doing, dig in for God sake!!

Bon appétit!



Paris - PNY, Amorino and more

D-day! My birthday. We decided to go for a nice juicy burger. 
So PNY it was.
PNY is well known in Paris for their really really yummy and juicy burgers. Last year I went to the one in Saint-Denis, but as they opened one in the Marais we went there. 

And as it was nice weather we could eat on the terrace.

After some procrastination we decided to go for the Morning California and The Return of the Cowboy. 

So while waiting I had a look inside. Some bright colours with eye for details. 

And then arrived these little babies. With a nice burger bun, some melted cheddar, avocado and off course meat. Oh my, I want one now...
And the french fries where to die for.

One or another museum in Paris

And as it was my birthday some sweetness was much needed. But it was way too hot, so we went for another... Gelato. This time served as usually.



Ps. I wanted to include a really nice text
So here it comes:

"Je t'aime, je suis folle, je n'en peux plus, c'est trop
Ton nom est dans mon coeur comme dans un grelot,
Et comme tout les temps, ......, je frisonne,
Tout le temps, le grelot s'agite, et le nom sonne!"

If you know who the author is, let me know bellow.


For my birthday already one mont ago, we went to Paris.
We were so lucky, the weather was fantastic. 
So here are a couple of pictures of that amazing trip. 
I warn you already there are a lot of food pictures....

We started off at the Arc de Triomphe 

Strolling around, we arrived at the Petit Palais and Grand Palais

Even taking the metro is romantic!

Jardin du Luxembourg. Where you could even play chess 

Having lunch al fresco at the Jardin with bagels from Bagelstein

Look at my vegetarian bagel! Filled with mozzarella, dried tomatoes, paprika and cream cheese! YUM!

Saint-Sulpice #nofilter

A bridge... But which one?

Finally some food. Delicious ice-cream (gelato) from Amorino. I really liked the taste, but couldn't find the form a real rose. 

Some sweetness in the Rue des Rosiers

That was it for day one and two!



Avocado Brownies FKA Green brownies

Back on track with some chocolate dessert, brownies.
The slightly "healthier" version of this one.
AVOCADO Brownies, but I prefer to call them green brownies.

You will need:

Two avocado's
170 g dark chocolate
50 g butter
80 g flour
Two eggs (optional: organic and free range ones)
40 g cocoa powder
120 g light brown sugar ("cassonade")
50 g butter
5 g baking powder
A pinch of sea salt
Optional: flaked almonds

Pre-heat your oven to 180° C.

Start of by mixing your avocado's like you would for your tradition guacamole.

Meanwhile melt your dark chocolate on a low heat.

Once melted add your butter and let it melt too.

Let the chocolate cool down a bit.

Now mix the "avocado puree" with the cooled, melted chocolate and butter.

Add the sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and flour. Mix well.

Now add your eggs and the sea salt. Mix well again.

Butter and flour your baking tin and pour in your mixture.

Optional sprinkle some flaked almonds on top!
Bake for 25-30 minutes.
And there you have the slightly healthier version of traditional brownies. 




Goodbye Tea Party

I'm back with a rather special post.
Lately all most of my friends are studying abroad. Japan, Ireland, Italy welcomed my friends.
Recently my friend Maarten also went on an erasmus. But before he did, he kindly organized a Goodbye Tea Party.

He laid all the different tea beautifully. As a "passionate" baker and chocolate lover, I thought I could bake an indulgent and chocolate dessert. As everybody likes chocolate, sugar,... . I decided to go for brownies.

For this brownies you will need (according to this site):

150 g brown sugar
10 g vanilla sugar
1 tsp cocoa powder
2 organic eggs
120 g chocolate
90 g flour
A pinch of salt
Optional (but totally worth it): handful chopped walnuts

Preheat your oven to 180°c.
Melt the chocolate and butter in a small saucepan at low temperature. Once melted, let it cool down.
Whisk your eggs in a large mixing bowl. Add the cooled chocolate and butter to your eggs. Mix well together.
Add the salt, sugar and flour. Mix together until you have a beautiful batter.
Add your walnuts (optional).
Pour it in your baking tin.
Bake for about 30 minutes.
Let it cool down properly before to unmould your brownies.
Then bring it with you to your favorite people.

Feeling something is missing? 
Of course! Some whipped cream.

Whisking, whisking, whisking, ... 
Wait! Don't make butter!

Chocolate and whipped cream does makes us happy people!

The final result with a nice cup of tea!

Ps. have a wonderful erasmus Maarten!

Crêpes (chandeleur)

As tomorrow it's "the chandeleur" (or candlemas) I though I would share my all-time favorite "crêpes" recipe. 
The coolest part of making these crêpes is the flipping of the crêpes themselves. 
It's a recipe I found in an old cookbook from my great-grandmother. 
I think it's the cookbook from the boerenbond, but I don't know it exactly as the cover is missing. 

You will need:

200 g self-raising flour 
500 ml milk
30 g sugar
10 g vanilla sugar 
4 eggs

Sieve the flour in a big bowl.

Add the sugar and give it a good whisk. 

Make an hole in the center and simply add the eggs and milk. 

Mix everything well.

Your batter is ready.

Now come's the fun part, flipping over the crêpes. 

Grab your special pan for crêpes. You can find here what I mean with the pan. 

Melt some butter in the pan and start baking and flipping over (see below).

Once the butter is melted, pour your batter in the pan

Spread the batter all over the pan (by turning the pan)

Once you see bubbles appear on the surface, you know it's time for the FLIPPING.

Serve immediately.

Sprinkle some white, blonde or brown sugar on your crêpes or spread some marmalade, (if you're being naughty) nutella (or homemade chocolate spread), chestnut-cream,... . 

Ps. Remember that the first crêpe always often fails.

Ps. I tried out a Flipagram. 

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