Tag Archives: pumpkin

Spicy pumpkin cookies

Cookies that melt in the mouth...

Cookies that melt in the mouth…

This lovely cookie I found on allrecipes.com. I was looking for a nice way to use my Libby jar of pumpkin purée and I really enjoyed the melting fudge-like texture of the dough  and the mixed spices.

Ingredients list:

  • Fine flour, 180g
  • Baking powder, 1 tsp
  • Baking soda, 1tsp
  • Ground cinnamon, 2 tsp
  • Ground nutmeg, ½ tsp
  • Ground cloves, ½ tsp
  • Salt, ½ tsp
  • Butter, 125g
  • Icing sugar, 90g
  • Pumpkin purée, canned, 100g
  • Egg, 1
  • Vanilla extract, 1 tsp

Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, salt.

Preheat the oven to 175 degrees.

Cream the butter and icing sugar. Add the flour and spices mix.

Drop ball shaped portions of the dough on greaseproof paper and reserve in the fridge for 30 min if possible – it will help them retain their shape.

Bake for 15 to 20 min then let them cool and drizzle some icing over them (icing sugar mixed with a few drops of lemon) or just dust in icing sugar.

If you do not have pumpkin puree, you can replace with unsweetened chestnut puree. The nice spicy edge of this cookie is made even nicer by the fact is is not over sweet.  The icing sugar does also improve the texture and makes the dough very fudgy and melting.

Enjoy those cookies with a nice cup of tea. That is my favourite British expression: not just any cup of tea but a “nice cup of tea”! Cures all ills – might even work on my nasty cold…

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Risotto de potiron, pancetta et piment doux en VF

English version here!

Ce Risotto de potiron, pancetta et piment doux est paru dans le journal du Lycee de Londres pour Halloween mais je la remets ici en l’honneur de mes visiteurs francophones, pour les remercier de leur soutien et de leur vote! Je suis sur la page 1 du Concours MarieCLaire Idées mais continuez de cliquer sur le cupcake rose…

Liste des ingrédients :

  • Potiron 250g
  • Riz Arborio 450g
  • Sancerre (ou autre blanc) 500ml
  • Bouillon de poulet 1L (Maggi cubes et eau)
  • Pancetta en cubes ou lardons 250g
  • Echalotes émincées, une grosse poignée
  • Huile d’olive 40 ml
  • Butter 40g
  • Sel et poivre
  • Laurier-sauce, 2 feuilles froissées
  • Gousses d’ail, 2 écrasées
  • Piment doux ou Piment d’Espelette, 1 cuillère à soupe
  • Noix muscade, 1 cuillère à café
  • Cannelle, 1 cuillère à café
  • Parmesan, 2 cuillères à soupe

Coupez le chapeau du potiron et grattez l’intérieur de la courge avec une cuillère pour en retirer les graines. Utilisez cette cuillère en métal pour évider la chair par larges copeaux : Essayez de garder le potiron intact si vous projetez un dîner d’amis afin de servir le risotto à l’intérieur. L’effet sera festif et raffiné !

Sinon, coupez des parts comme dans une orange et  taillez la chair au couteau.

Mettez les cubes ou les copeaux de chair dans un plat à rôtir et passez au four 40mn (180C).

Grillez la pancetta au four en même temps que le potiron, pour la rendre croustillante et éviter trop de gras dans le plat final.

Préparez votre bouillon de poulet et réservez.

Rincez le riz sous le robinet.

Faites fondre le beurre dans l’huile à l’intérieur d’un grand fait-tout : Jetez l’ail écrasé et les échalotes émincées dans l’huile chaude et faites sauter sur feu vif.

Lorsque le tout est doré, ajoutez les cubes de potiron rôtis, assaisonnez bien avec les épices et continuez de cuire durant une dizaine de minutes, à feu doux. Le potiron doit être bien recouvert de sauce.

Rajoutez les feuilles de laurier, en les froissant entre vos doigts.

Rajoutez le riz en une seule fois; puis versez le vin, verre par verre, suivi du bouillon et continuez de remuer sur feu doux jusqu’à ce que le riz ait absorbé tout le liquide.

Ceci prendra bien 45mn et plus vous opèrerez lentement, plus le résultat sera moelleux.

Assaisonnez légèrement avec le sel et le poivre.

Saupoudrez généreusement de parmesan en fin de cuisson. Décorez avec les cubes de pancetta. Si le risotto vous semble un peu sec, vous pouvez ajouter une grosse cuillère de crème fraîche à cette étape.

Lorsque je fais un risotto et que je ne suis pas trop pressée par le temps, je le fais assez liquide et puis je le parsème de parmesan et retour dans un four très chaud pour le laisser mijoter 5 bonnes minutes: C’est prêt lorsque le grain est ferme mais parfaitement cuit. Servez avec un sauternes ou un muscat bien glacé. Les notes de fruits confits de ces vins doux conviendront à merveille aux saveurs douces et acidulées de ce plat et à la chaleur de ses épices.

Si vous avez envie de voyager plus avant dans mon répertoire gourmand, revenez visiter mon blog: http://www.travelsaroundmykitchen.com

Note : Le piment d’Espelette est une spécialité du pays basque. C’est un piment doux au parfum de rose qui convient délicieusement à ce plat. A ramener de vos vacances ! PS: Look for the English version HERE

risotto sur l'AGA

Butternut and goat cheese risotto

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The Italians serve risotto as a starter, in smaller portions, which I think is a better way of appreciating it than when you get a big main course plateful. This recipe serves five, as usual here on the blog!
For a light lunch, serve with a crisp salad and some sliced Speck or Parma ham.

Ingredients list:
Risotto Arborio 250g
Shallots 3
Olive oil 20ml
Butter 20ml
Handful of fresh chopped basil and parsley
Stock 450g (Chicken cube and water is fine)
Pumpkin or butternut squash flesh 250g (peeled and diced)
Salt and pepper
Dry white wine 200ml
Creamy goat cheese 125g
Some grated cheese for topping

For the wine, I used a lovely Sancerre with hint of citrus and a crisp finish which made the dish taste quite lovely and lemony- like an italian lemon grove! You need a zesty and quite acidic white for this.

Prepare the squash flesh by peeling and dicing it with your sharpest knife.

Season the butternut with salt and pepper and rub some oil into the cubes. Put in a roasting oven for 15 min, checking and shaking regularly. Take out when the flesh is tender et slightly charred on the sides.

Chop the herbs and shallots finely and fry them in a thick bottomed pan: I used a wide cast iron one that I’ve owned for the whole of my Londoner’s life.

Add the rice to the pan with the fried shallots. Add the stock and wine bit by bit while turning: let it bubble on low heat. When  all of the wine and stock has be absorbed, the rice should still be slightly ‘al dente’ under the tooth. Better to leave it too soupy than to dry it out! Check the seasoning and add some- or not. I added a good scraping of butter but you don’t have too if it is moist enough.

At the last minute, chuck the cooked flesh and the goat cheese into it.
Just before serving, pour into a warm gratin dish, with a sprinkling of olive oil, some cracked pepper and a generous amount of grated cheese such as cheddar and put back a few minutes under the grill until it turns a nice golden colour, 3 to 4 min at the most.

Once you’ve got the hang of it, risotto is actually a fool-proof dish and a great fall back recipe for when the cupboard is bare. The key is to cook it long enough and not to let it dry out.

Pumpkin pie

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PUMPKIN PIE

My son came back one day from school with this recipe and we have done it time and time again since! It has become a firm family favourite and I give it to you just as it is. Pretty quick.

Ingredients list:
500g cooked pumkin flesh
50g crème fraiche
2 eggs
50g brown muscovado sugar
vanilla drops
Cinnamon

Make a short pastry by mixing 150g plain flour, 20 g rice flour, 1 spoonful of sugar and 60 gr butter in a food processor. Add a small sherry glass of cold water in drips as soon as the mix starts forming crumbs. Make a ball of it, slip into a plastic bag and into the fridge.

Take the cooked pumkin flesh and put in the mixer with the beaten eggs, the cream and the sugar and spices. It must be finely mixed to produce a smooth creamy filling. Choose a nice bright orange pumpkin for colour!

Roll out the pastry and lay it into a medium pie tin. Prick it with a fork. Blind bake it in a hot oven for 15mn. Then pour the mix in and bake another 30mn at 18O C.

Serve warm or cold.

This is originally an American pudding but the Brits have adopted too and with good reason because it is so tasty. This version is perfect for cinnamon lovers such as me and my youngest son – who put cinnamon everywhere we can…

>Pumpkin, pancetta and sweet chilli risotto

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I adore the idea of such a seasonal dish, matching the colours of the autumnal forest outside and including all of the winter spices that always seem to put me in a festive mood, in advance of Christmas…

Ingredients list:
Pumpkin 250g
Arborio rice 450g
White Sancerre (any dry white) 500ml
Chicken stock 1L
Diced pancetta 250g
Chopped shallots 1 large handful
Olive oil 40 ml
Butter 40g
Salt and pepper
Bay leaves 2 bruised ones
Garlic clove 2 chopped
Sweet chilli 1 Tbsp
Nutmeg 1 tsp
Cinnamon 1 tsp
Parmesan 2 Tbsp

Cut the top off your pumpkin then scoop out the seeds and use a spoon to get as much flesh out as you can. Keep the pumpkin whole to serve the risotto inside it for a fabulously festive effect! Or let the children carve it and put a candle inside. In any case, put the flesh in a baking dish covered with foil and cook for 40mn in a hot oven.

Grill the pancetta in the oven until crispy so most of the fat will cook off – and not in the dish.

Prepare your chicken stock and reserve.

Rinse the rice under running water.
Melt the butter in the oil in a large thick-bottomed pan and fry the shallots and garlic in the hot oil.
Once the shallots are golden and tender, add the baked pumpkin flesh, season well with the spices and cook for another 10mn on low heat until the flesh is nicely coated with the sauce. Add the bay leaves, slightly bruised in your hands.

Add the rice in one go; then pour the wine glass by glass, followed by the stock and churn on low heat. Cook until all liquid has been used up and has evaporated which will take a good 45mn of slow cooking. The slower you work the better, for a dreamy end result.

Season to taste and add the parmesan at the last minute with the roasted pancetta. Serve inside the  hollowed out  pumkin, in company of a sweet wine such as a good Sauternes.

My lovely friend Segolene and I had this for lunch with a chilled glass of Château petit Védrines 2006 : Its honeyed and stewed apricot notes complimented the sweet and spicy flavours of the risotto very well indeed. And all 5 children loved it despite the chilli dimension and wiped the dish clean !