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Monthly Archives: August 2017

Easy Dessert Decoration

1. Pick a subject

Before you start with the decoration of the course, make a subject which will complement the general theme of the party or occasion.

2. Make it colorful

A splash of color will bring your desserts to life. Choose colors that complement one another. Explore different shades and tones as long as they complement one another. It would be one best act to attract guests and keep their mouth-watering.

One amongst the simplest ways to decorate a cake or course is with fruit and nuts. For instance, use berries for a decadent semi-sweet chocolate cake, or sliced pineapples, mangoes and peaches for a refreshing tropical fruit trifle. Shred lots of colorful gems and sprinkle them over the dessert. Or cut some nuts like cashew, almonds and scatter them over your sweet dish to add that touch of elegance.

3. Make it creative as a painting

There are many ways to compose a plate. Think about the plate as if it is a blank canvas or as if you were composing the frame for a photograph. Adding totally different textures to the plate adds excitement to the visual charm of course. To illustrate, you could make some meaningful drawings suiting the theme of the party with your candy pieces over the topping of the cake.

4. Contrast temperatures

There is nothing like pairing a slice of warm pie or a fruit tart with a cool scoop of frozen dessert. Combining temperatures are often easy; however plating will need some thought. Don’t place your course on a hot plate. Frozen dessert can soften too quickly. A chilled plate could also be useful once plating cold desserts, whereas hot ones can just do fine for many cakes or pies.

Grilling Perfect Burgers

The first step to grilling good burgers is to start with good burger patties. You should use freshly ground beef that contains about 20% fat for flavor. You can tell that the meat is good if it’s a bright pink color and doesn’t have any dark spots or an unpleasant smell. When forming the patty, don’t over mix the chilled meat; this can make the patty tough, and when that happens, not even the best tips for grilling burgers can help you then!

One of the key grilling burgers tips I’ve learnt is to first grill my burger patties over a high heat. This helps to seal the surface of the patty completely and keep all those tasty juices inside where they belong. The juices from the meat tell you when the patty has been cooked through. When the meat is still raw, the juices are pink, and when it’s fully cooked, the juices run clear.

Once you’ve got your burgers on the grill and sealed them, one important thing to remember when grilling burgers is to flip them just once with a spatula. Absolutely do not press down on the burgers while they’re cooking! It won’t make them cook any faster and doing so squeezes out all the juices you sealed in earlier. The result is a dry, tough burger patty that is no different from beef jerky in texture.

Make Burgers in 10 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 500 g / 1 lb good quality minced beef
  • Couple of handfuls of fresh bread crumbs (great way to use up unwanted crusts)
  • One Egg
  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon or Coarse Grain Mustard
  • Crushed garlic clove (optional)
  • Fresh burger rolls to serve

How to Make Burgers – Method

  1. Put on disposable plastic gloves (messy business otherwise)
  2. Put all ingredients into a bowl and mix together thoroughly, using your hands
  3. Using your hands again, mold mixture into burger shapes
  4. Cook on a BBQ, under the grill, in the oven or in a frying pan

Serving Suggestions

I like to serve these burgers at the table with all the trimmings and let people help themselves. Try some of the following suggestions:-

  • Thinly Sliced tomato and/or cucumber
  • Lettuce
  • Sliced cheese – tasty cheese works well
  • Avocado – sliced or mashed
  • Pineapple rings – the tinned type are perfect (drained of juice)
  • Sliced cooked beetroot – again, from a tin is quick and easy
  • Mustard and/or sauces
  • Mayonnaise
  • Pickle

Variations

As I mentioned earlier, you can make beef, lamb, chicken or pork burgers. Just make sure you use good quality minced meat. Your burgers will only ever be as good as the meat you use.

  • Add some finely chopped chili for a spicier version
  • Sweet chili is also nice, for a spicy but not too hot version
  • Use hot English mustard – if you like the heat
  • If you have time (and can avoid the tears) add a grated onion

Making Lavender Ice Cream

What are the ingredients needed?

4 cups of milk

2 cups of whipping cream

8 egg yolks

1 cup of fine white sugar

1 tablespoon of salt

1 cup of honey

stalks of fresh lavenders or dried lavenders (used for cooking)

What materials do I need?

ice cream maker (borrow from Mom or from the lovely neighbor)

mixing bowls

sauce pans

strainer

whisk

How to make all these into ice cream?

Step 1: Pick lavender petals from the stem. Set aside.

Step 2: Pour in honey, and half of the lavender petals into a sauce pan. Allow it to cook and simmer on medium heat. Set aside.

Step 3: Once the lavender and honey mixture simmered, set them aside for an hour for the honey to steep the lavender petals.

Step 4: After an hour, pour and strain lavender and honey mixture into the mixing bowl with the whipping cream. Set aside.

Step 5: Bring together milk, sugar, and salt in a saucepan and allow to simmer.

Step 6: Use the whisk to beat the egg yolks.

Step 7: Whisk together the milk mixture and beaten egg.

Step 8: Pour the milk and egg mixture into the saucepan and allow to simmer until thick. This will take approximately 7 to 10 minutes. Set aside after.

Step 9: Pour and strain the milk and egg into the lavender, honey and whipping cream mixture.

Step 10: Add the other half of the lavender petals.

Step 11: Stir. Stir. Stir.

Step 12: Transfer the mixture to a bowl covered with cling wrap and place it in the freezer for 5 hours.

Step 13: After five hours, pour and strain the mixture into the ice cream maker. It is important to strain the lavender petals.

Step 14: Follow instructions on how to use the ice cream maker.

Step 15: Transfer the mixture into a container and chill it for a few hours.