Naughty or Nice?

February 1st, 2018

Cozy soups, sensuous salads and devilish desserts – TeleLIFE helps you turn up the heat this V-Day with a delectable line-up of treats.

Noir Devil’s Own

Serves 6

Ingredients

175 gm plain flour

¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda

2 tsp baking powder

75 gm cocoa powder

1/8 tsp salt

3 tbsp butter, softened

300 gm caster sugar

2 eggs

¾ tsp vanilla essence

250 ml milk

For the ganache:

250 gm dark chocolate

125 ml milk

200 gm whipped cream

To decorate:

450 gm whipped cream

Red food colour, as required

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line a cupcake tray with paper or foil cases.

2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cocoa and salt. Set aside.

3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well with each addition, then stir in the vanilla.

4. Add the flour mixture alternately with the milk. Beat well. Fill the paper cups until they are ¾ full.

5. Bake for 15 mins in the preheated oven, or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.

6. Make a chocolate ganache of melted chocolate and hot milk. Mix well making sure the chocolate and milk blends well. Add it to the whipped cream and mix well.

7. Using a narrow spoon, scoop out the cake from the centre and fill the hole with the ganache. Mix the red food colour with the whipped cream and decrote the cupcakes using a piping bag.

8. For the horns: Meld together the cake crumbs with a little ganache and shape them into horns. Allow them to dry for a minute before inserting into the cake. Serve.

Grilled Chicken Red Cabbage Calad

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 bunch baby beetroot, washed (reserve the leaves)

150 gm red cabbage

60 ml extra virgin olive oil

800 gm chicken breast fillet

75 gm toasted hazelnuts, coarsely chopped

2 tbsp sherry vinegar

2 tsp wholegrain mustard

100 gm soft goat’s cheese, crumbled

Red and yellow chillies, sliced, to garnish

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Place the beetroot in a roasting pan and drizzle with 2 tsp oil. Bake for 20 mins or until tender. Remove and set aside to cool slightly. Peel and cut into quarters.

2. Preheat a pan or barbecue on high. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Cook on preheated grill for 4-5 mins on each side or until cooked through. Transfer to a plate and cover with foil. Set aside for 5 mins to rest. Use a sharp knife to cut thick slices.

3. Place the reserved beetroot leaves, red cabbage and hazelnuts in a large bowl and gently toss to combine.

4. Whisk together the vinegar, remaining oil and mustard. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle over the salad leaves and gently toss to combine.

5. Place the chicken on the plate and spoon the salad over it. Garnish with sliced chillies. Roll the goat’s cheese into balls and place on the plate. Serve immediately.

Creamy Mushroom Chicken Soup

Serves 4

Ingredients

2 tbsp butter

2 tbsp olive oil

500 gm boneless chicken breast, diced

25 gm carrot, diced

1 large rib celery, diced

360 gm mushrooms, sliced (use a combination of fresh mushroom varieties)

1 garlic clove, minced

4 spring onions, sliced

2 tbsp flour

950 ml chicken broth

½ tsp dried thyme

½ tsp salt

Fresh ground black pepper to taste

180 ml heavy cream

Method

1. In a large saucepan, heat butter and 1 tsp olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and stir until tender but not browned.

2. Add diced chicken, carrot and celery. Cook, stirring until chicken is nearly cooked through.

3. Add the mushrooms (keep some aside to saute in oil for garnishing) and continue cooking, stirring, until mushrooms are tender. Stir in flour with a little water to make a paste. Add the chicken broth and thyme.

4. Bring to a simmer. Cook for about 10-16 mins, until vegetables are tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir in cream and heat through.

5. Transfer to bowls and garnish with sautéed mushrooms. Serve hot.

Roasted Mushroom Salad

Serves 4

Ingredients

500 gm white button mushrooms, halved or quartered

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp lemon juice

¾ cup red bell pepper, finely chopped

12 gm basil or mint leaves, torn

35 gm pine nuts, toasted

1 green, yellow and red bell pepper, sliced

Cherry tomatoes, to garnish

Mint leaves, to garnish

For the dressing:

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar or lemon juice

1 large garlic clove, crushed

Salt to taste

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 204°C. Toss mushrooms in olive oil and lemon juice. Spread on a large baking sheet and bake for 15 mins. Drain off liquid. Cool slightly.

2. In a bowl, combine mushrooms, red pepper, basil or mint, and pine nuts.

3. Whisk together the dressing ingredients and toss into the mushroom mixture.

4. Place the sliced bell peppers on the plate and spoon mushroom mixture on top. Garnish with cherry tomatoes and mint leaves. Serve.

Beetroot Soup with Parmesan Cheese

Serves 4

Ingredients

2 tbsp olive oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1kg fresh beetroot, peeled and diced

360 ml vegetable stock

100 gm radish, finely sliced

100 gm parmesan cheese, crumbled

Method

1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large saucepan. Add the chopped onion and fry for 5 mins - until slightly softened. Add garlic and toss in the beetroot and cook for 15 mins.

2. Pour in the vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for 30 mins or until the beetroot is tender. Season well and cool.

3. Blend the soup with a hand blender until smooth.

4. If you must serve the soup chilled, leave to cool completely and chill for a couple of hours before serving. If serving hot, warm through in the pan for 2-3 mins. Serve in bowls or mugs with the radish and parmesan cheese scattered over it.

Strawberry Marshmallow Parfait

Serves 4

Ingredients

8-10 marshmallows, finely chopped + 2 for garnishing

500 gm whipped cream

150 gm cream cheese

50 gm fresh strawberry purée

5 fresh strawberries, roughly chopped + 2 for garnishing

40 gm strawberry crush

Method

1. Whip the whipped cream. Set aside.

2. Cream the cream cheese properly, making sure there are no lumps.

3. Add the fresh strawberry purée and strawberry crush to the cream cheese. Add the mixture to the whipped cream.

4. Add the finely chopped marshmallows and mix well.

5. Pour part of the mixture into a glass, add chopped strawberries, marshmallows and top with the remaining mixture. Decorate with marshmallows. Serve.

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