Archive for the ‘Something’ Category

Food Connect – Week 1 & 2

A couple of weeks ago I signed up for Food Connect (http://www.foodconnect.com.au/ ).

Food Connect is an award winning social business that works in collaboration with brilliant local farmers around Brisbane to deliver the best food in the world efficiently, affordably and equitably. Our unique distribution system is flexible, convenient and most of all healthy for you and your community. We are passionate about changing the way food is grown and distributed in this and any country where exploitation of farmers and customers is rampant.

What I love about Food Connect and what prompted me to join is that the food is organic and local, which means I know I’m not getting any GM food and that more of the money I’m spending is getting to the farmers who work so hard to produce such lovely food.

I’m really excited about it and I’m getting the gourmet box which is a mix of vegetables and fruits. The produce you get is seasonal and you don’t always know what you’re going to get so I’m expecting it will really broaden the range of dishes I cook. I can’t wait to explore new vegetables or fruit that I haven’t eaten before or that I haven’t cooked before. I think it will also be a good way to get more fruit and vege in our diet.

Ham & Cheese Croissant

Yesterday I happened to be driving past Emporium in the morning and decided to stop by for a ham and cheese croissant from the Belle Epoque patisserie. Then after carefully driving out of the car park and having avoiding hitting the mercedes next to me or reversing into the Bentley parked opposite me, I snacked on the way to work.

I think it was probably the best ham and cheese croissant I’ve ever bought. It was toasty warm, but the croissant was still soft. I’m pretty certain the cheese was mozzarella and as I took my first bite a few strings of cheese pulled away. So tasty. It had the right amount of ham and I THINK there may have been something else… a sauce or mayo or something. Maybe I just have to go have another one and investigate further. ;)

I had another ham and cheese croissant today. This time from Croissant Express which I used to go to on occasion when I worked in the city. The croissant was a bit hard and very crusty, so it made a big mess when I ate it. And because they don’t toast it to order, the cheese wasn’t soft and melted anymore. It’s for speedier service I know. Also they were cheaper and if you’re in the city you probably won’t be commuting a couple suburbs over just for a croissant. But personal preference now lies with Belle Epoque.

Too bad I work 25 minutes away from Emporium. :(

First post

It’s time to get this blog going. I have set up a wordpress app on my phone so now I can post while out and about. Hopefully this means I will be updating more frequently and in a more timely manner. Enjoy the random ramblings.

Baked Pear Cheesecake

After eating some yummy cheesecake at Pearl Cafe I decided to do some cheesecake baking of my own. Pears have just come in season so what better way to celebrate than with cake. This turned out to be a really nice cake. It wasn’t too dense but I really should have had more pear. The base was nice but I wanted it more crunchy, so maybe I’ll use less butter next time.

This receipe was adapted from Stephanie Alexander’s Best Cheesecake Ever receipe on www.cuisine.com.au

Ingredients:

100g butter (melted)
300g butternut snap cookies
500g cream cheese, at room temperature
200g caster sugar
1 tbsp cornflour
3 eggs
2 tbsp lemon juice (I think that the cake could have been improved by substituing half of the lemon juice with pear juice)
few drops of vanilla extract to taste
pinch of salt
2 cups sour cream
3 pears

Preheat oven to 180ºC.

Brush the base and sides of a 22cm x 6cm deep springform tin with a little of the melted butter. Remove the base from the tin.

Cut a round of baking paper to fit the base of the tin, brush the paper with a little butter and set aside.

Tear off an 80cm sheet of foil and double it over so it measures 40cm in length. Lay the foil over the base of the tin, then put the buttered round of paper on top. Sit the springform tin over the base and lock the sides into place, leaving excess foil outside the tin. Draw up the excess foil around the tin and fold the top out of the way. You now have a watertight container.

Pear Cheesecake Tin

Crush the biscuits in a food processor. Add the remaining butter and process. Press the crumb mixture into the base of the tin, tapping firmly with the base of a glass tumbler or similar as you go. I pressed some of the crumb mixture into the sides but later I realised that I had left the base quite thin. Next time I will put all the mixture in the bottom for a thicker base.

Pear Cheesecake Base

Beat the cream cheese and sugar in an electric mixer until smooth.

Pear Cheesecake Sugar Cheese

Beat in the cornflour, then add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating each time just until smooth.

Pear Cheesecake Batter

Add the lemon juice, vanilla and salt.

Add the sour cream and beat briefly to combine.

Peel the pears then halve and remove core. Slice into small slices.

Pear Cheesecake Pears

Pear Cheesecake Sliced Pears

Pour the batter into the tin to fill about 1/3 of the way up. Add 1/3 of the pears. (Alternatively, just chop the pear into smaller pieces and mix in with the batter before pouring into the pan.

Pear Cheesecake Batter

Pear Cheesecake Batter and Pears

Add another third of the batter and again top with pears.

Pour the remaining batter and top with the last of the pears.

Pear Cheesecake

Stand the tin in a large baking dish. Pour boiling water into the dish to come halfway up the sides of the tin.

Bake for 50 minutes, then turn off the oven but do not open the door for a further hour.

Lift the tin from the water bath and flatten the foil away from the sides just in case there is any water trapped inside. I used paper towel to soak up some of the excess water.

Pear Cheesecake

Allow to cool completely in the tin on a wire rack and then refrigerate for several hours or overnight before serving.

Pear Cheesecake

Eat it!