Jan 07

Cookbook 132: The Jewelled Kitchen

The Jewelled Kitchen by Bethany Kehdy is a stunningly beautiful cookbook.  I bought it because it looked so beautiful and I was intrigued by the recipes inside.  Sadly, despite it being beautiful, the recipes did not work for me the way I hoped and it was a tiny bit disappointing.  I think that as I cook more from this book I will be able to adjust the recipes to work more for me.  Right now I give it 2 out of 5 stars.

Chickpea Flour Quiche

Chickpea Flour Quiche

Ingredients

  • butter for greasing
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 135g boneless lamb shoulder, fat removed, sliced into thin slivers
  • 200g (2 cups) chickpea flour or gram flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp cumin, plus extra for sprinkling
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt, plus extra for seasoning
  • 750ml milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp Harissa
  • 85g semi-sun dried tomatoes

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C and lightly grease a 23cm round ovenproof dish with butter.
  2. Heat half the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat.  Add the lamb and sear for about 2 minutes until cooked through, stirring often.
  3. Put the chickpea flour, cumin, salt, milk, eggs, harissa and remaining oil in a mixing bown and pulse with a stick blender until you achieve a smooth, frothly, liquid mixture with an airy texture.  Add salt to taste.
  4. Add the cooked lamb and stir to combine, then pour the mixture into the prepared dish and scatter over the semi-sun dried tomatoes.
  5. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.  During the last 5 minutes of cooking, change the oven setting to grill and then grill for the last few minutes in order to brown the top of the quiche.  Leave to rest for a few minutes before slicing.  Serve warm, sprinkled with more cumin if desired, and with a salad.

Notes on this recipe:

  • I thought I had chickpea flour at home, but I didn’t have enough, and so I mixed it with plain flour.  It was ok.  I don’t know if it would have been better with just chickpea flour, and that’s something I’ll have to try again in the future.
  • Also, I’d add way more Harissa.  It’s really a taste thing, but it disappeared in amongst the egg, flour, cumin and lamb, and I’d probably double the quantity at least, if not go even further and add a full teaspoon.
  • I’d also probably put more egg in and way less flour.

Koshari

Ingredients

  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 small mild red chillies (or more to taste), deseeded and finely chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 400g tomatoes, finely chopped, or canned chopped tomatoes
  • 150g brown lentils, rinsed
  • 3 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 400g onions, thinly sliced
  • 150g spaghetti, tagliatelle or reshteh
  • 150g cup elbow macaroni
  • 50g coarse or extra coarse bulgur wheat
  • 20g salted butter
  • 50g vermicelli broken into 4cm lengths
  • mint leaves to sprinkle
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • lime wedges to serve

Method:

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat, add the chillies, garlic and cumin and cook for about 1 minute until aromatic.  Add the tomatoes and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and leave to simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, stirring often, until the mixture is thick and sauce-like.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  2. At the same time, heat a heavy-based saucepan of water over a high heat and add the lentils.  Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low; cover and simmer for 20 – 30 minutes until soft.  Drain, then cover to keep warm.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the sunflower oil in a frying pan over a medium heat, add the onions and fry for about 15 minutes, stirring often, until caramelised and golden brown.  Transfer the onions to a plate lined with paper towels.  Set the empty pan to one side.
  4. Heat another large saucepan of water over a high heat, season with salt and add another tablespoon of olive oil.  Bring to the boil, then add the spaghetti and macaroni at the same time and cook for 10 minutes or according to the packet instructions.  The macaroni may take a bit longer to cook, in which case add it to the water first.
  5. Put the bulgur in a small heatproof bowl, cover with double it’s volume of boiling water and leave to soak until all the water is absorbed and the bulger is tender, about 10 – 15 minutes.
  6. Heat the frying pan used for the onions over a medium heat, add the butter and fry the vermicelli for 3 – 5 minutes until golden and crispy, stirring often.  Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside.
  7. When the pasta has finished cooking, drain then return to the pan and toss with the remaining olive oil.  Cover and keep warm.
  8. Place a layer of pasta on 4 plates, sprinkle over the bulgur, add the vermicelli, lentils and tomato sauce.  Sprinkle with the caramelised onions and mint.  Serve with lime wedges and salad.

Notes on this recipe:

  • It tasted good, but I wanted double the amount of tomato mixture because it seems to not quite be enough.  I’d eat this again, but I’d add more chillies (to my taste) and I’d double the tomato portion so that there is a lot more sauce to go around.

Egyptian spiced bread pudding

Ingredients

  • 4 all butter croissants
  • 2 tbsp raisins or dried mixed berries
  • 2 tbsp flaked/silvered almonds, plus extra to sprinkle
  • 2 tbsp pine nuts, plus extra for sprinkling
  • 2 tbsp roughly chopped shelled, unsalted pistachios
  • 250ml milk
  • 5 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp orange blossom water
  • 250ml whipping cream
  • 4tbsp desiccated coconut
  • 1 small egg, beaten

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C and line a baking sheet with baking parchment
  2. Tear up the croissants into bite-sized pieces, place on the baking sheet and bake in the oven for 10 minutes until crisp and golden.
  3. Spread the baked croissant pieces across the base of a baking dish, about 28cm square.  Sprinkle over the raisins, almonds, pine nuts and pistachios, making sure they are spread evenly.
  4. Heat the milk in a heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat, add 3 tablespoons of the sugar and mix well to dissolve.  Reduce the heat to low, add the cinnamon and orange blossom water and heat through at a gentle simmer for 3 – 4 minutes.  Remove pan from the heat and leave it to cool so that the egg won’t scramble when it is added.
  5. Meanwhile, but the cream and the remaining sugar in a mixing bowl and whisk until the mixture forms soft peaks.  Sprinkle in the coconut and gently fold to incorporate.
  6. Add the egg to the cool milk mixture and whisk to combine.  Ladle the mixture into the baking dish and spread the whipped cream over the top.
  7. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes until everything is bubbling and the top is golden, if necessary putting it under a hot grill for the last 1 – 2 minutes to brown the top.  Remove from the oven and leave to stand for a couple of minutes.  Serve warm.

Notes on this recipe

  • To be completely honest with you I have no recollection of this recipe at all.  There is a photo which means I made it, but it’s not in my memory bank.  It sounds like a nice recipe, but I have no memory of it.
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