Cumin, Coriander and Chickpea Rolls.

Chickpeas are a staple in my diet. They are such a versatile little ingredient. This post is dedicated to my friend who I believe is even more addicted to chickpeas than me…Amanda. Seeing as it was her birthday this week too, I think this is the perfect post for such a great friend.

The lovely little bar where I like to hang on weekends closed its doors to the public last night in preparation for their big move to an even bigger and better location. Tonight they are celebrating this move with some staff and friends and thanks to Snott, I have the privilege of attending! I’m taking these little gems along and have no doubt they’ll be a hit.

These are perfect for entertaining. Little effort is required and they look fantastic. I am a massive fan of cumin and coriander so I just love this combination of flavours. You could experiment with other herbs and spices such as oregano, rosemary and thyme and add carrots, potatoes or corn to mix it up.

The bits and pieces

3 tins chickpeas, drained and rinsed

2 tablespoons good quality olive oil

4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 brown onions, finely chopped

1 large red capsicum, seeded, membrane removed and roughly chopped

1 small chilli, seeded and finely chopped

1 tablespoon cumin seeds

1 tablespoon coriander seeds

250g baby spinach

1 cup frozen peas

2 tablespoons tahini

2 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs

1/2 lemon juiced

1 large handful mint leaves, chopped

1 large handful coriander leaves, chopped

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

5 sheets pre-made puff pastry

1 quantity egg wash (1 egg, 100ml milk, pinch of salt, whisked) for brushing

paprika, for sprinkling

Place chickpeas in a large bowl. Blend chickpeas with a stick blender until mashed but not completely smooth – you want the mixture to still be slightly chunky.

Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic, onion, capsicum and chilli and cook until soft. Add the cumin and coriander seeds and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring regularly, until aromatic. Add the spinach and peas, stir for 1 minute, or until slightly wilted, remove from heat. The spinach and peas will continue to cook while off the heat. Allow to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, add the breadcrumbs, tahini, lemon juice, mint and coriander to the mashed chickpea mixture. Add the salt and cayenne pepper and the spinach mixture. Stir until ingredients are well combined.

Preheat oven to 200ºC. Lay pastry out on a clean level surface. Cut in half. Using your hands roll mixture into small logs and place in the centre of the pastry until you have reached both edges.

Brush one of the edges with the egg wash. Firmly fold the pastry over, pressing to enclose the log tightly, leaving the ends open. Section each roll into bite size portions, one roll should make approximately 6 small pieces. Place on baking trays lined with baking paper, seam side down. Brush each roll with egg wash and sprinkle with paprika.

Reduce the oven tenperature to 190ºC and bake for 35-40 minutes. Rolls will be cooked when pastry looks flaky and is golden brown in colour.

Enjoy!

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Raspberry and Dark Chocolate Muffins.

Almost every morning before the beau starts work he stops in at the cafe where I work to say hello. Without fail his order is “One decaf flat white please! Oh, and do you have any high fibre blueberry muffins?”. Sometimes we have sold out of the muffins that he so dearly enjoys and I know how much this disappoints him when hearing this news. So this recipe is dedicated to him. Which I hope will make up for those many mornings he has had to miss out on his favourite muffins!

These are definitely more decadent than the ones the beau enjoys at my work but I know he loves them just the same… or (I hope) even more. These muffins taste delicious straight from the oven (as most muffins do!) and are fantastic accompanied with freshly brewed tea or coffee.

I have adapted this recipe from The Bourke Street Bakery Book. Thanks guys!

The bits and pieces

2 2/3 cups plain flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2/3 cup caster sugar

200g unsalted butter

480 ml milk

3 free range eggs

225g dark chocolate roughly chopped

1 1/4 cups raspberries (fresh or frozen)

1/3 cup organic raw sugar

icing sugar, for dusting

Preheat the oven to 190ºC. Lightly grease muffin tins (makes about 12 – 14 muffins) and line with paper cases if you desire.

Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl and add the sugar. Mix well.

Melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat, then remove from heat and stir in the milk. Using a whisk, stir in the eggs to combine. Pour over the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Using a wooden spoon, fold through the raspberries and chocolate.

Spoon the mixture into the greased muffin tins. Reduce the oven temperature to 180ºC and bake for 25-30 mins. If the muffins are browning too quickly drop the oven temperature about 10 minutes before the end of the baking time. To check that they are done press gently on the top of one of the muffins to feel that it is firm. You can also insert a skewer into a muffin, if it comes out clean they are baked!

Remove from the oven and allow to cool in tins for about 10 minutes. Dust with icing sugar and serve. Delicious!

Mulled Wine.

For some reason I have a habit of consuming mulled wine at gigs or prior to heading out to see one. I experienced my first cup of mulled wine a couple of months ago at one of the local bars. I decided that it was absolutely necessary that I experience it again and endeavoured to recreate it at home.

Success! This is a fantastic recipe. It is so simple and super warming and delicious. I have made this one a couple of times now and is perfect for Friday evening drinks with your friends. Last time I made this I was on my way to see the lovely Gossling. I arrived super warm and very, very giggly.

I have made this once with oranges and once with limes as that was the only thing I had in the house. I can honestly say that it really doesn’t make that much difference so if you are partial to lime go for it! I have a habit of leaving half drunk wine bottles to sit and oxidise during the week. I usually decide I’d like a glass or two with dinner and leave the rest. Fast forward to the weekend, I have multiple bottles that, until I discovered mulling wine would sit in the kitchen unused because they’ve become oxidised and deemed unsuitable to drink. I made this with a couple of half finished bottles on the weekend and it was delicious.

The bits and pieces

 

2 ½ – 3 bottles of red wine of your choice

1 whole orange quartered

1 cup of organic raw sugar

3 bay leaves

1 whole cinnamon stick

6 whole cloves

2 star anise

1 whole nutmeg

Place a large saucepan on the hotplate at high heat. Add the sugar. Squeeze the orange quarters into the saucepan and drop them in. Add just enough red wine to cover the sugar and bring to the boil. The idea here is to create a sort of red wine sugar syrup.

Add 10-12 gratings of nutmeg, the cinnamon stick, cloves and bay leaves and leave to infuse with the sugar syrup for about 10 minutes. Turn the heat down and add the remaining red wine. You want the wine to be warming through but take care not to over heat as this will cause the alcohol to evaporate and result in less giggles! Add the star anise and leave for 5 minutes. Remove the orange quarters.

Serve immediately!

NOTE: I turn the heat off after I have served the first round of glasses and turn the heat back on when I need more in order to prevent over boiling.