Fa La La La La…

Merry Christmas my lovely readers!! Hope you are having a wonderful day filled with love and joy amongst loved ones. As promised I am posting my final recipe for the year and what better time to do it than on Christmas day 🙂

In a few hours time I’m headed to spend time with my dear friends and loved ones hence decided to once again bake a cake….a festive cake, incorporating Persian flavours and full of colour!!

This year I opted to make a Bundt cake as I just love the sophisticated presentation of it. I have a go to Bundt recipe that is full proof however this year I couldn’t find it anywhere so I had to resort to the internet and make my adjustments. Luckily it worked out well so I hope you enjoy it and give it a go.

Christmas Bundt

Ingredients

Cake

  • 1 1/2 cups of unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups of raw caster sugar
  • 6 eggs at room temperature
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp greek yoghurt
  • 3/4 cups of milk
  • 2 tbsp Persian rose water
  • 2 tbsp steeped Saffron

Mixture

  • Vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup Barberries
  • 1/4 cup pistachios
  • 1/4 cup of slivered almonds
  • 1 tbsp steeped Saffron
  • 1 tbsp Persian rose water

Glaze

  • 2 cups of icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp Persian rose water
  • 2 tbsp steeped Saffron
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4-1/2 lemon juice and zest

Method

This is a pretty simple recipe, you do need a mixer for it to be able to yield a nice sponge. Either a hand mixer or a bench top one is ideal.

To make the sponge; cream the butter by beating it with the sugar until a light and fluffy mixture develops. Then add the baking powder and salt and mix to combine. Add the yoghurt at this stage.

Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius fan bake. Weigh out the flour, make sure it’s sifted and set aside. With the mixer running at medium speed add the first 3 eggs one at a time to the mixture. Then prior to adding the next egg add 2-3 tbsp of the flour. Once it is combined then add the egg. Repeat this process for the remainder of the eggs.

Add the rose water and saffron to the milk and slowly pour half of the mixture to the bowl, then add a third of the remainder of the flour and repeat until both the milk and flour are fully added and incorporated to the batter mixture and keep mixing on until the batter is smooth and fluffy. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a spatula to make sure the mixture is smooth and even.

Set the mixture aside and in a small pan, sauté the filling ingredients on the stove top and set aside to slightly cool. Grease the Bundt pan thoroughly with vegetable oil and you can coat it with granulated sugar (this is optional to help the cake not to stick to the pan)

Hot tip: Don’t use butter to grease the pan as it will cause the cake to stick and break.

Once the pan is greased, scoop the batter into it using a spatula and smooth it as you go along. Once you reach the half way point of the pan, add the filling with a table spoon to the batter, make sure that you leave adequate space around the edges and only fill in all around the middle part of the Bundt. Then continue on with adding the remainder of the batter to the pan and smooth the top so that it looks even.

Bake for 50-60 mins or until the batter has started to turn brown and a long skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.

Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool for five minutes, gently loosen the edges at this point using a knife or a flat metal spatula. Then invert onto a cooling rack and leave for another 5 minutes before attempting to loosen the pan.

Make the glaze at this point and set aside, gently slide the pan from the sponge. Give it a little tap or jiggle to help it slide off. Pour the glaze and let it cool. Decorate and serve.

I couldn’t resist a slo-mo ;P

Well that’s it for me for this year, it’s been an amazing year. Wishing you all a fantastic and safe festive period. See you all in the new year for more fun!! Till then Xx

Sabzi Kuku Roulade

Hola lovely readers! Do you still remember me?! I know it’s been a while but I’m back from my hiatus for more fun 🙂

Can you believe it’s December already! Geez, where does the time go?? The silly season is upon us and in lead up to Christmas I figured I share with you my take on a humble dish that I have eaten and many Persians eat on a daily basis. The ever ubiquitous “Kuku”. Now for those of you who are not familiar with that word this is a staple in Iranian home cooking and chances are you may have had something that resembles this….think “Frittata”. A Frittata is an egg based Italian dish that is oven baked, likewise a “Kuku” is a stove top cooked version of a Frittata!

There are numerous versions of the “Kuku” found in Iran, some with potato, some with herbs, some with eggplant. The choices are endless, basically if you can mix it with egg and cook it you can call it a Kuku!!

Full disclosure, I’m not a huge fan of “Kuku” and I’ll only really eat it there is no other choice of food available. So why am I posting about it you ask? Well, in my previous life of auditioning for MKR I came up with a more modern and fancier version of “Kuku” that is absolutely FAB.

The reason why it’s such a great recipe is that it is my interpretation of a “Kuku”, it combines all the flavour combinations that I like to eat with a “Kuku” in the one go. Rather that creating just a “Kuku” and serving it with elements I like to put together I decided to combine it all and serve it as a roulade. Plus it’s an excuse to use my Kitchen Aid, can’t go wrong.

The type of “Kuku” that I’m basing my roulade recipe on is “Sabzi Kuku”. Sabzi means herbs so it’s a “Sabzi Kuku Roulade” recipe. I really hope you try to attempt this recipe, it’s a great addition to a Christmas lunch spread. It’s also pretty healthy and a good option for vegetarians. It also impressive looking so it will be a hit with your guests.

Hot tip: you can choose different flavour combinations and substitute elements you can’t find or don’t want to use

Sabzi Kuku Roulade

Ingredients

For the sponge batter:

  • Parsley, Coriander, Chives (also you can use garlic chives instead), baby spinach all chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • Spring onion/shallots (optional)
  • 6 eggs
  • Salt 1/2 tsp
  • Pepper to taste
  • Lemon zest
  • Turmeric ground 1/2 tsp
  • 100 g Plain flour
  • 100 ml oil

Filling

  • 250 g cream cheese (you can also add a bit of ricotta to this)
  • Barberries 1/2 cup cleaned, washed and sautĂ©ed (for filling and garnish)
  • Walnuts 1/2 cup chopped (to enhance the flavour; leave Walnuts in water and place in fridge rather than using dry/raw)
  • Poached Chicken pieces shredded (optional, leave out if vegetarian)
  • Chilli flakes (optional)
  • Lemon juice

Method

Firstly to perform this recipe you must own a mixer of some kind, if you don’t have a Kitchen Aid then use a hand mixer and a bowl.

To make the sponge simply mix all the ingredients and slowly add the flour to the egg batter. pre-heat the oven to 180 and grease and line an adequate sized oven tray. If your tray is too large the roulade won’t be as thick as there is a greater surface area. Spread the batter evenly onto the lined tray and give it a good couple of taps to release the trapped air. Place in oven for 20 mins and check to see whether it is ready by stabbing it gently with a toothpick or knife. Once the knife and or toothpick is clear, remove the tray and with the help of tea towel, roll the sponge and place it on a rack to cool for 30 mins.

While the sponge is cooling, sautĂ© the Barberries and leave aside. If you can’t find this ingredient try an alternative like cranberries or sultanas. Mix the cheese until soft and add the Chilli flakes. You can use Cinnamon instead of Chilli if you are adding Cranberries/sultanas to the mixture. With a brush, spread some lemon juice on the sponge to help the cheese mixture adhere to the surface. Then spread the cream cheese mixture and sprinkle the Barberries and chopped Walnut.  When spreading the filling make sure that you leave the edges clean as too much will spill out once the sponge is rolled. Roll the sponge and wrap in a tea towel and place it in the fridge for a couple of hours.

IMG_4188
One fine-looking roulade!!

The roulade is now ready to be served. You can serve it as whole (above photo) with some Barberries as garnish or slice it like below and serve with yoghurt and barberry sauce. Bon appetit!

IMG_4187
My fancy AF take on this humble dish 🙂

To make up for my lack of posts and because it’s the season of giving and I’m feeling generous I will be posting later again this month so watch this space. Till next time Xx