January 24, 2022

Mediterranean Salmon Avocado Poke Bowl

This Hawaiian poke bowl is a one-bowl meal made with fresh salmon, avocado, and a colourful choice of vegetables with a Mediterranean twist, which is not only easy to make but packed with nutrition as well! 

Recipe Card 

Ingredients Quantity
For the Oat Risotto  
Unsalted butter 1 tbsp
Steel-cut oats 1 cup
White arborio rice ½ cup
Sea salt 1 tsp
Unsweetened plain almond milk 3 cups
Water 2 cups
For the Hazelnut Dukkah  
Sesame seeds ¼ cup
Roasted hazelnuts ½ cup
Coriander seeds 2 tsp
Sea salt ¼ tsp
For Serving  
Eggs 4 large
Smoked salmon folded into rosettes 400 g
Avocados halved, pitted, and sliced into thin pieces  
Extra-virgin olive oil As required
Pea sprouts or sunflower sprouts (optional) As required
Lemon wedges As required

 

Method of Preparation: 

FOR THE OAT RISOTTO

In a large pot or high-sided skillet, warm butter over medium heat until foamy. Add oats, rice, and salt; toast, stirring constantly, for 1–2 minutes. Stir in almond milk and water. Bring to a boil, reduce to medium, and cook, uncovered, stirring every few minutes or so, for 22–25 minutes. (Lower heat in the last 10 minutes of cooking time to avoid scorching or splatters if necessary.)

FOR  THE HAZELNUT DUKKAH

In a skillet, toast sesame seeds over medium heat until tanned (30 seconds–1 minute); add to a food processor with remaining dukkah ingredients, and pulse until finely chopped. Transfer to a glass jar or airtight container for storing in the refrigerator.

FOR THE SOFT-BOILED EGGS

Fill a medium saucepan halfway with water; bring to a boil, reduce heat to a rapid simmer, and gently add eggs. Cook for 5–6 minutes, drain immediately and run cold tap water over shells. Cool for 1 minute. Carefully remove the shell.

TO SERVE

To bowls, add a bed of risotto; top with avocado, egg (halved), smoked salmon rosettes and dukkah. Drizzle with oil and garnish with sprouts (if using). Serve with lemon wedges for seasoning.

January 23, 2022

Butternut Squash Apple Bruschetta

Roasted Butternut Squash & Apples in warm spices and paired with Ricotta, a delicious twist on the classic bruschetta makes this recipe the perfect appetizer for the winters! 

Recipe Card

Ingredients Quantity
Sliced Green Granny Smith Apples 2 cups
Grapeseed or other neutral oil 1 tbsp
Salt 2 tsp
Ground black pepper 1 tsp
Butternut squash, diced 2 cups
Extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsp
Ground allspice 1/8 tsp
Smoked paprika 1 tsp
Fresh thyme leaves 1 tbsp
Pecans 1 cup
Baguette 1
Good quality Ricotta 350 g

 

Method of Preparation: 

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
  2. On one sheet pan, toss Apple slices with grapeseed or other oil, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and roast for 15 minutes or until caramelized. On another sheet pan, toss butternut squash with 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, the allspice, cinnamon, smoked paprika and thyme and roast for 10 minutes, or until just tender. Let cool to room temperature.
  3. Roast the pecans for about 3 to 4 minutes or until they become fragrant. Cool slightly and chop.
  4. Slice 12 pieces from the baguette on the bias, sprinkle with remaining olive oil, salt and pepper. Grill or toast in the oven until golden brown. To assemble the bruschetta.
  5. Top each slice with about 2 tablespoons of Ricotta cheese and sprinkle with pecans. Then add a nice mix of squash and apples. Serve immediately.

January 22, 2022

Kimchi Fried Rice

Homestyle fried rice loaded with kimchi, mushrooms, veggies and topped with a fried egg - perfect for an easy weekend dinner!

Recipe Card

Ingredients Quantity
Grapeseed or olive oil As required
Spam/Bacon 1 cup
Unsalted Butter 1 tbsp
Baechu kimchi, cut into bite-size pieces OR

Bibigo Sliced Kimchi (store–bought)

 

400 g
Button Mushrooms, sliced 100 g
Rice wine vinegar 2 tbsp
Granulated sugar 2 tsp
Cooked short-grain rice 4 cups
Salt As required
Large eggs 4
Thinly sliced scallions (optional) As required

 

Method of Preparation: 

  1. In a large skillet, heat 2 teaspoons of oil over medium-high heat. Add the Spam and cook it, stirring occasionally, until it is brown on all sides, about 3 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside. In the same skillet add, 1-2 tablespoons of oil and add the mushrooms and sauté till all water evaporates. Set aside.
  2. Add the butter in the skillet, then the kimchi, vinegar, and sugar, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the kimchi is heated through and softens slightly about 3 minutes.
  3. Fold in the cooked rice and the Spam, and mushrooms.
  4. Taste for salt, and keep it warm while you cook the eggs.
  5. In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat, and fry the eggs sunny-side up.
  6. Top each plate of kimchi rice with one egg and garnish with sliced scallions, if using.

January 21, 2022

Swedish Meatballs and Mash

Try this better than Ikea, easy to make meatballs full of flavour, swimming in the most amazing creamy gravy sauce and served with this dreamy creamy mash! 

Recipe Card: 

Ingredients Quantity
For the meatballs and gravy  
Panko bread crumbs 1 cup
Warm Milk ½ cup
Unsalted butter 4 tbsp
Onion, diced 1 large
Salt, more as needed 2 tsp
White or red grape juice 1 tbsp
All-purpose flour 1 ½ tbsp
Beef or chicken broth, low sodium or homemade 1 cup
Heavy cream ½ cup
Dijon mustard, optional 1 tsp
Ground beef 450 gm
Ground veal 450 gm
Eggs 2 large
Garlic cloves, grated on a Microplane or minced 2
Freshly ground black pepper ½ tsp
Allspice ½ tsp
Ground ginger ¼ tsp
Nutmeg ¼ tsp
Cloves A pinch
Extra-virgin olive oil As needed for drizzling
Chopped fresh parsley or dill For Garnish
For the creamy mash potatoes  
Tiny new potatoes 450 g
Garlic cloves 2
Fresh Dill leaves, chopped 1 tbsp
Buttermilk (non-fat) ½ cup
Salt 1/8 tsp

 

Method of Preparation: 

For the Meatballs: 

  1. In a medium bowl, soak bread crumbs in warm milk while you prepare the onions.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of butter. Stir in onions and a pinch of salt and cook until pale golden, about 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer half the onions to a large bowl and set aside.
  3. Prepare sauce: Add grape juice to the skillet with onions then add the remaining butter, letting it melt. Sprinkle in flour. Sauté until flour browns, about 3 minutes. Whisk in broth, cream and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Simmer, whisking, until reduced to a sauce, about 5 minutes. Add mustard, if you like, and season with more salt, if needed.
  4. To large bowl with onion, add remaining 1 3/4 teaspoons salt, soaked bread crumbs, beef, veal, eggs, garlic, pepper, allspice, ginger, nutmeg and cloves. Roll into 1-inch balls (about 2 tablespoons each), placing them on the rimmed baking sheet as you go.
  5. Heat broiler. Drizzle meatballs with oil. Broil meatballs in the oven, by placing the baking sheet close to the broiler, until meatballs are well browned all over, 5 to 10 minutes. Serve with gravy, creamy mash, garnished with herbs.

For the Mash: 

  1. Scrub the potatoes, and cook, with the garlic, in a covered pot in water that covers them for about 20 minutes, or until they are tender.
  2. Chop the dill, and place in a serving bowl with the buttermilk and salt.
  3. When the potatoes are cooked, drain and put them, with the garlic, through a food mill over the buttermilk bowl, or mash by hand in the bowl. Mix and serve.

January 20, 2022

Beef Bourguignon from “Julie and Julia”

When Julie Powell (Amy Adams) attempts to make Julia Child's recipe for boeuf bourguignon in "Julie and Julia," she falls asleep and burns it to a crisp which makes her call in sick the next day and remake this wonderful dish that is so significant to the delicate intricacies of French cooking.  Now that is reason enough for us to have a no-fail take on this French classic! 

Recipe Card

Ingredients Quantity
Beef Brisket, cut into large cubes 800 g
Red wine(non-alcoholic) 4 cups
Thyme sprigs 2
Garlic cloves, crushed 4
Sunflower oil 100 ml
Plain flour 2 tbsp
Veal stock or Chicken Stock 600 ml
Bouquet garni made with 1 parsley sprig, 1 thyme sprig and 1 small bay leaf, tied together with kitchen string 1
Carrots, peeled, halved lengthways and cut into chunks 2
Silver skin onions 12
Small button mushrooms 100 g
Bacon, diced 100 g
Flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped 1 handful
Salt & Freshly ground pepper To taste
Creamed Mashed Potatoes To serve

 

Method of Preparation: 

  1. In a deep dish, mix together the beef, wine, thyme, garlic. Cover with cling film and leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
  2. Drain the meat into a bowl, using a colander, and reserve the marinade.
  3. Heat 4 tablespoons of the oil in a large saucepan or cast iron pot over medium heat. Add the meat and cook for 20 minutes until brown, season with salt and pepper, then sprinkle with the flour and cook, stirring, for a further 2–3 minutes. Add the stock and reserved marinade and bring to the boil. Skim the foam off the surface and add the bouquet garni, then reduce the heat to low and simmer, partially covered, for 1 hour 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the meat is tender. By that time you should have a rich, silky sauce.
  4. About 50 minutes before the end of the cooking time, heat another medium saucepan with 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-low heat. Add the carrots and onions and cook for 10 minutes or until soft and pale gold in colour, then add to the meat saucepan.
  5. When the beef is almost ready, heat the remaining oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and bacon and fry for 8–10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, then add them to the beef. Check the seasoning adjusting the salt and pepper, if necessary, throw in the parsley and stir gently without breaking the delicate pieces of beef.
  6. Serve hot with creamed mashed potatoes for a perfect winter warmer.

January 19, 2022

Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars

Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bar is a treat made with a shortbread crust, spiced apple filling with streusel topping and salted caramel. A fun twist on this classic dessert is just as good as the delicious apple pie itself.

Recipe Card 

Ingredients Quantity
For the crust and topping:  
Softened Butter For greasing pan
All-purpose flour 3 cups
Sugar 1 cup
Fine sea salt 1 tsp
Cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes 3 sticks
Walnuts, toasted & chopped ¾ cup
Ground cinnamon ½ tsp
Ground cardamom ½ tsp
For the Apple Filling  
Tart apples, such as Granny Smith, peeled, cored and cut into 1/8-inch slices 1 ½ pounds/680 grams
Sweet-tart apples, such as Fuji, Pink Lady or Gala, peeled, cored and cut into 1/8-inch slices 1 ½ pounds/680 grams
Lemon juice 3 tbsp
Unsalted butter ¼ cup/55 grams
Ground cinnamon 1 tsp
Freshly grated nutmeg 1 tsp
Ground cardamom ½ tsp
Sugar ⅔ cup/135 grams
Salted caramel sauce- homemade or store-bought To serve

 

Method of Preparation: 

  1. Make the crust and topping: Heat oven to 175 C degrees. Line a 9-by-13-inch cake pan with foil with an overhang on all sides. Lightly grease the pan with softened butter.
  2. Pulse flour, sugar and salt in a food processor with the blade attachment to mix. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse sand. Put 1 1/2 cups in a medium bowl and mix in walnuts, cinnamon and cardamom. Squeeze with your hands to form a solid mass of dough. Cover and refrigerate.
  3. Pour the remaining mixture into the prepared pan and spread in an even layer, then press into the bottom of the pan and 1/2 inch up the sides.
  4. Bake until golden brown and dry to the touch, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Raise oven temperature to 375 degrees.
  5. While crust bakes, make the filling: Toss all of the apples with the lemon juice in a large bowl. Melt butter in a large sauté pan set over medium-high heat. Stir in cinnamon, nutmeg and cardamom and sizzle for 15 seconds. Add apples and cook, stirring often, until just starting to soften, about 5 minutes. Add sugar and stir well. Cook, stirring occasionally until all liquid is released from the apples then evaporates, 10 to 15 minutes. The mixture should be quite dry and the apples tender, but not sticking to the pan. Remove from heat and cool.
  6. Spread apple filling evenly over crust and press down gently to get rid of any gaps between the apple slices. Uncover the reserved walnut mixture and break off pebble-sized pieces. Arrange pieces in a lattice or striped pattern overfilling or scatter evenly on top.
  7. Bake until the topping is golden brown, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool completely in pan on a rack. To serve, lift apple pie bars out of the pan and onto a large cutting board. Slide bars off foil then cut into 6 even strips crosswise and 4 even strips lengthwise.
  8. Drizzle salted caramel sauce to serve.

January 17, 2022

GREEN PEA SOUP

Light yet cozy and creamy soup made with fresh sweet green peas is a perfect way to keep you warm and satiated during the winter season.    

Recipe Card 

Ingredients Quantity
Oil/Butter 1 tbsp
Garlic, sliced 3-4 cloves
Yellow onion, finely chopped ½
Scallion, finely chopped 2
Leek (white part only, finely chopped) 2 tbsp
Frozen peas 4 cups
Chicken or vegetable stock 3  cups
Salt & freshly black pepper To taste
Cooking cream ½ cup
Grated Parmesan Cheese 2-3 tbsp

 

Method of Preparation: 

  1. Place a saucepan over medium-low heat, and add oil/butter garlic, yellow onions, scallions and leek. Sweat until softened.
  2. Then add frozen peas. Mix well.
  3. Add 3 cups boiling stock and season to taste. Cover, and cook at a lively simmer until peas are tender, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat, and allow to cool until no longer steaming.
  4. Transfer soup to a blender. Add cheese, and purée until the mixture is very smooth.
  5. Return to the saucepan, and add ½ cup of cream to mix.
  6. Serve immediately or, if desired, reheat to taste.

January 16, 2022

Hot & Sweet Vegetable Hummus Sandwich

This hot & sweet version is a makeover given to the regular Vegetable Hummus Sandwich, filled with the favourite winter veggies, fruits and hummus, and is nothing short of a simple deliciousness! 

Recipe Card

Ingredients Quantity
Courgette 1
Peppers (mixed colours) 2
Ciabatta rolls 2
Green pesto (store-bought) 1 tbsp
Hummus 2 heaped tbsp
Dried cranberries 1 tbsp
Hot sauce A dash
Salt & pepper A pinch
For the Hummus  
Garlic halved and green shoots removed 1-2 cloves
Chickpeas, drained & rinsed 1 can
Ground cumin ½ tsp
Salt To taste
Freshly squeezed lemon juice 3-4 tbsp
Low-fat yoghurt, as needed 2-3 tbsp
Extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsp
Sesame tahini 3 tbsp

 

Method of Preparation: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C fan/and line a large baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Trim the ends off the courgette and cut it in half, then cut each half into 5mm-thick strips.
  3. Halve the peppers and remove the seeds, then slice into 2cm-thick strips.
  4. Transfer the veg to the lined baking tray and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and pepper, then drizzle with olive oil.
  5. Combine everything with your hands, spread the veg out in an even layer, then bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until soft
  6. Cut the ciabatta rolls in half, add them to the oven and bake everything together for a further 5 minutes.
  7. Remove the ciabatta and veggies from the oven and spread ½ tablespoon of pesto on the bottom half of each roll. Then add a generous layer of courgette pepper strips and cranberries. Add the dash of hot sauce to desire.
  8. Spread a heaped tablespoon of hummus inside the remaining half of each ciabatta roll and place them on top. Tuck in and enjoy.
Note: Additionally, pomegranate kernels can also be added to the sandwich, if desired. 

FOR THE HUMMUS

  1. Turn on a food processor fitted with the steel blade, and drop in the garlic cloves. Process until they are chopped and adhere to the sides of the bowl. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the remaining ingredients, and process until very smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings.

January 15, 2022

Cheesy Cornbread Casserole

Corn casserole is a comfort food that never gets old. This super easy and truly tasty casserole goes great with chilli, soup or grilled chicken.

Recipe Card

Ingredients Quantity
Tomatoes, diced & undrained 400 g
Small onion, diced 1
Celery stalks, minced 2
Garlic clove, minced 3
Bell pepper, seeded & diced 1
Cajun  seasoning (commercial blend or make your own) 2
Canned Kidney beans, drained & rinsed 400 g
Cornmeal 1 cup
Baking powder 1 ½ tsp
Salt A pinch
Raw sugar (optional) 1-2 tbsp
Milk 1 cup
Cheddar cheese, shredded 2 cups

 

Method of Preparation: 

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease an 8- or 9-inch square baking pan or casserole dish.
  2. Drain tomato juices into a skillet, and chop tomatoes into smaller pieces. Set chopped tomatoes aside.
  3. Sauté onion, celery, garlic and bell pepper over high heat in the same skillet with the tomato juice, until onion is translucent, bell pepper slices are tender and all of the water has evaporated about 4 minutes.
  4. Turn off heat, and mix in 1 tablespoon of Cajun Seasoning, chopped tomatoes and kidney beans, stirring to combine. Add in 1 cup of the cheddar cheese and mix. Set aside.
  5. In a small mixing bowl, whisk cornmeal, baking powder, salt and, if desired, additional Cajun Seasoning (several dashes, so the mix looks speckled when stirred). You can also add 1 to 2 teaspoons of sugar if you like a sweet cornbread topping.
  6. Then add in the milk. It should be thick but spreadable, land not dry.
  7. Pour bean mixture into your baking dish, and pat down firmly with a spatula. Spread cornbread mixture on top, bake for 30 minutes, or until the cornbread is golden, cracked and firm to the touch.
  8. Remove the casserole dish from the oven, add the remaining cheese on top and let gratinate for a few minutes by cooking under the broiler in the oven for 2 to 3 minutes, watching carefully.
  9. Serve warm. and Allow to set out for 15 minutes before serving.

 

January 14, 2022

Creamy Farro Bowl

This warm & hearty bowl of farro is a one-pot wonder where faro is cooked in broth and parmesan and topped with roasted vegetables, crispy chickpeas and a lemon-tahini dressing for a simple and yet deeply satisfying meal in a bowl! 

Recipe Card 

Ingredients Quantity
For the dressing  
Tahini 1/3 cup
Water 1/3 cup
Lemon juice ¼ cup
Garlic cloves, minced 2
Ground cumin ½ tsp
Cayenne pepper ¼ tsp
Salt ½ tsp
For the crispy chickpeas  
Canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed 400 g
Extra virgin olive oil 1 ½ tbsp
Salt, plus more to taste ½ tsp
Ground coriander ½ tsp
Ground cumin ½ tsp
Ground allspice A pinch
Ground cayenne A pinch
For the salad  
Salt 1 tsp
Pearled or semi-pearled farro 1 cup
Bay leaf 1
Extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling 5 ½ tbsp
Cider vinegar 1 ½ tbsp
Ground coriander ½ tsp
Fresh corn kernels, from about 3 ears corn, or use frozen corn

 

2 cups
Thinly sliced scallions, white and green parts ¼ cup
Thinly sliced fennel ½ cup
Chopped mixed fresh herbs, such as parsley, cilantro, mint and/or basil ½ cup
Flaky sea salt For serving
Grated parmesan For serving

 

Method of Preparation: 

  1. For the dressing, combine the tahini, water, lemon juice, minced garlic, cumin, cayenne, and salt in a blender. Blend until smooth. Set the dressing aside in the fridge until ready to use.
  2. Spread drained chickpeas on a rimmed sheet pan lined with a clean dishtowel or a double layer of paper towels. Let air-dry for at least 30 minutes while you cook the farro.
  3. For the Farro, Bring a medium pot of seasoned vegetable broth to a boil. Add farro and bay leaf. Cook until tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Drain well, discarding bay leaf. Put the farro in a bowl and, while still warm, stir in 5 tablespoons of the olive oil, the vinegar, 3/4 teaspoon salt and the coriander. Let farro cool to room temperature. Heat oven to 180 degrees C.
  4. For the chickpeas, remove towels from the baking sheet and toss chickpeas with olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt and spices until well coated. Roast, tossing halfway through, until golden and crispy, about 25 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool.
  5. In a mixing bowl, lightly drizzle kernels with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon olive oil and 1/4 teaspoon salt, and toss to coat. Spread corn in a single even layer on a rimmed sheet pan. Roast, tossing halfway through roasting, until golden brown and fragrant, about 20 minutes.
  6. Add corn to farro mixture, along with the scallions, fennel and herbs, tossing to combine. Taste, and add more salt and/or vinegar if needed. Just before serving, fold in crispy chickpeas so they remain crunchy. Top with another drizzle of olive oil, Tahini dressing, grated parmesan and flaky sea salt.
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