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Monday, July 26, 2010

Apple Tart

This apple tart has a pastry base that doesn't need to be blind-baked! Just make the base, line it in your pie dish, add the apples and then grate more pastry on top. How easy is that and you can even alter the filling and add peaches and sultanas. We shared this with friends twice this week and couldn't resist last night while watching the Masterchef Grand Finale. So easy to make and it's a taste sensation.


125g unsalted Butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
2 cups Plain flour
2 teas baking powder
1 teas vanilla essence
1/4 cup sultanas (optional)
800g can "Ardmona" Pie Fruit Apples Sliced
400g can Apples, sliced
400g can Peaches, sliced


Preheat oven at 180oC (170oC fan forced). Grease with spray oil a large pie pan and set aside.

1. With electric beaters cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat again, add vanilla essence and beat again.

2. In another large bowl sift flour and baking powder. Add butter mixture to flour mixture and beat with electric beaters until it forms a crumbly dough. With your hands bring the mixture together to form a ball of dough. Remove a small handful of dough, the size of a large orange, and wrap this in clingfilm and pop in the freezer. This will be the dough that will be grated on top. Press the rest of he dough on the base of the greased pan.

3. Squash the apples with the back of a fork and add all the apples in the greased pie dish. Remove the ball of dough from the freezer and with the large hole grater, grate the pastry over the apples.

4. Place tart in oven and bake at 180oC for 40 minutes or until browned.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Cream Dream Cupcakes

Hi everyone - I found this recipe in the Country Women's Association Cakes Cookbook that I borrowed from the library a few days ago. Everytime I go to the library, that's all I seem to borrow Cookbooks! But I learn so so much and am inspired everytime. Well I just had to make these cupcakes. I always make cupcakes with butter and milk BUT this recipe calls for just CREAM ! They were sensational, fluffy and light and with the addition of the strawberry icing, the best my family have tasted. Grab one now or just come by sometime for a cuppa and I'll make them again.

** Cupcakes inspired by Country Women’s Association Cakes Cookbook

Makes 12 Large Cupcakes

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup cream
1 ½ cups self raising flour, sifted
1 teas vanilla essence

With the K beater on the Kenwood, beat eggs and sugar on medium speed until double in volume and creamy about 2 minutes. Pour in the cream, vanilla essence and flour.

Fill cupcake cases ¾ full. Bake at 200oC (fan forced) for 20 minutes or until golden. Turn around at half time. Switch off oven and leave in oven to cool slightly with oven door ajar.

Amira’s Strawberry Icing

Icing will cover 8 cupcakes

2 tab margarine (“Meadow Lea”)
1 ½ cups pure Icing Sugar, sifted
2 teas milk
2 drops of strawberry oil (from cake decorating shops)
Red food colouring or Red food paste

Place margarine and icing sugar in a small bowl and beat with a handheld electric beater until it all comes together. Add milk and beat again. Add red colouring and strawberry oil. Continue to beat until the icing becomes creamy and fluffy, adding a tiny more milk if required. Be very careful not to add too much milk or else the icing will be too soft to pipe.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Korberba (Kibbeh)

I just gotta continue to cook with my mum and discover all the Arabic recipes that I ate when we were young. I had no idea how to make Korberba (that's what we called it in our family (it is known as Kibbeh in Lebanese), finally mum showed me and it is so easy. An extra pair of hands would help to speed up the process as it is time consuming. So a couple of days ago we had time over the school holidays and Anthony helped. We learned the art of making the balls, stuffing and patting the Korberba together, we laughed and we had fun but best of all we were together doing what gets handed down from generation. We cooked them and ate them the best way you can - snap bang off the hot oil. They're so yummy - ENJOY one or four at a time. Burgul (cracked wheat) is found at all middle eastern nuts shops and for this dish you need to use the "fine" grain.


500g minced meat (beef)
1 tab olive oil
1 onion chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced

Burgul/Mince Meat Mixture
1 kilo fine Burgul (cracked wheat)
500g minced meat (beef)
Water to soak

Vegetable Oil for frying


In a fry pan add olive oil and when hot add onion and fry until fragrant, add garlic and continue to fry for 1 minute. Add mince meat, salt and pepper. Break up mince with back of fork and cook mince until brown. Set aside to cool.

Burgul/Mince Meat Mixture
In a large bowl place burgul and pour cold water to cover with 1cm over. Set aside for 1/2 hour for the burgul to absorb the water. Once all the water has absorbed you can start to mix the mince meat with the burgul as follows:

In a food processor place a handful of burgul and 1/4 handful of mince, pulse in bursts until mixed together, remove and place in another large bowl. Continue like so with the rest of the burgul and mince and place in bowl until all the burgul and mince is mixed together. Once all mixed through add salt to the mixture and mix/knead with both hands until all incorporated. This requires a lot of muscle work.

To make the Korberba: Take about two walnut-size of the mixture and form into a ball. Hold the ball in your left hand and with your right finger/pointer make a long hole through the middle of the ball. As you continue to hold the ball with your left hand, turn the ball round your finger to make the long hole wider. With a teaspoon add some of the filling (cooked mince meat) into the hole and then close the whole. With your hand you can now form the croquette shape of the korberba (see picture above). Continue with the rest of the burgul and mince meat until all used up. You might find that you have some cooked minced meat left over which you can use for another dish. Now it's time to fry the Korberba.

Add oil to fry pan about 3cm deep, place over medium flame and when hot add the Korberba one at a time to fry in hot oil. Once brown on one side, turn over to cook the other side. When done, remove from oil and place on absorbent paper. Repeat with the rest of the Korberba until all cooked, adding more oil to fry pan, as needed and between each batch. The Korberba can be cooled and placed in the fridge for another day and warmed again in the oven, until crisp and hot. Enjoy as an accompaniment to meat or chicken dishes or just as a snack.