Tag Archives: lemon

A few days in Garbatella, and a lemon/blackcurrant curd tart

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I’ve been in Rome for a week for work, and despite the rain it has been lovely to amble round the neighborhood (Garbatella), drink coffee, meet neighbours tut-tutting over the weather, grafitti and state of the roads, and of course enjoy fall food.

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Cavolo nero at the market. And artichokes, broccolo romano, cicoria, mmmm….

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Friday night apertivi at the butcher’s up the hill, on Via delle Sette Chiese.

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Artichokes at the market: we were on our way to Eataly to see their new IKEA section, interesting. At least a good place to get ziplock bags without going to Anagnina.

Alberto Sordi

Alberto Sordi commemorated on Via Antonio Rubino.

The lemon/blackcurrant curd tart

One shop-bought pastry crust (here, gluten-free pâte brisée)
One jar lemon curd
One jar blackcurrant curd

Blind bake the pastry crust for ten min or so at 200C. I used baking beans. Then pour in the two curd jar contents, and cool until serving.

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We bought the blackcurrant curd in Maldon, and it was very nice. The artistic swirl foreseen did not quite work, but this was delicious. Also super easy.

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New shorts, and banana bread with a lemon twist

shorts from woodin material

One thing to enjoy in Accra is the wonderful fabric: lots of colours! I had another trip to the tailor this week: going to Woodin on Oxford Street a few weeks ago for fabric, then debating what to make. My wardrobe is becoming increasingly colorful, as my Europe-bought clothes are washed to death after 2.5 years here and fading, and thus being replaced with brighter clothes in Ghanaian fabrics.  Our tailor uses Pinterest and is very good at working with the shape you are. We debated styles and patterns: this time, it was three pairs of long shorts for my husband, and a cold shoulder dress for me. They all look great!

Another thing that is plentiful here is bananas….. B-A-N-A-N-A-S….. ! Small and sweet, I just wish I actually liked bananas. Which I do not. However, if they are hidden in a smoothie or a cake, it is manageable, and I do like to bake. This is a simple banana bread made for the office today. Tomorrow is Eid al Fitr, and a public holiday in Ghana, so I made two banana breads to take to work: one with lemon, one with chocolate chips. Here is the lemon one. Eid Mubarak!

Banana bread with yogurt and a lemon twist

110 gr butter, softened at room temperature  (softens fast at 30C)
125 grammes white sugar
2 medium eggs
1 tsp vanilla sugar
4 tbsp lemon juice (mine was bottled)
3-4 small ripe bananas (150 gr)
1/4 tsp salt
100 grammes yogurt
220 gr flour
1 tsp. baking soda

To glaze after baking:
2 tbs white sugar
1 tbs lemon juice

Heat the oven to 180C. Line a loaf tin with parchment paper. Whisk eggs, butter, sugar and mashed bananas. Add the rest and whisk briefly.  Pour into loaf tin, bake on middle rack for 50 minutes or so, until a test chopstick comes out clean. This batter rose a fair bit. Take it out the loaf tin and cool on a rack. While cake is still cooling, baste the top with lemon juice and sugar. Enjoy!

Note: I had extra batter so baked that in a greased ramekin, for an early cake taste.   Next time I might poke more holes in the cake, like for a lemon drizzle, and use more lemon juice.

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The two banana breads went fast! We did hiring interviews recently, and one question to candidates was on team work and what they would contribute to a team’s success. I am not sure cake would have been the right answer, but must say cakes do contribute to office goodwill.  😉

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Easy lemon-lime ice cream

20130714-135522.jpg We had limes, we had fresh cream, and had even found sweetened condensed milk: Key lime pie was the idea, but plans changed, and we made a simple ice cream instead. Much as I love dessert, we cannot eat a whole pie in the time remaining before departure… but what remains of this ice cream will keep. Adapted from food52: The best lime icecream, which looks lovely. However, we needed to save some limes for that pie, which will be after the upcoming holiday. Thus, we used half lemon and half lime, with a bit less sugar and more zest than the original recipe, so it’s quite tart.

Easy lemon-lime ice cream
Two limes: juice and zest (about 75 ml juice)
One lemon: juice and zest
500 ml cream
1/2 cup sugar

Zest and juice limes and lemons. It will smell amazing! Combine all ingredients, and freeze in an ice cream maker if you have one. I just used a wide, shallow plastic container. Stir with a fork once an hour the first few hours while freezing, it helps give a more even structure and breaks up any larger ice crystals. 20130721-192018.jpg Notes: it froze rock hard, but melts quickly once out of freezer, as you can see, so best not to leave it out too long. I might add a splash of vodka to keep it softer another time. Being used to milk-based gelato or yoghurt-based icecreams, I thought the cream here was a little heavy, but my husband thought this was great as it was. A little scoop is plenty. Easy dessert on a hot summer evening.