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I have always loved berry smoothies but since the beginning of this week I’ve developed some sort of a mango smoothie-mania.

I would often use mango as a salad ingredient or occasionally for a fool dessert but not so much as a base for a fruit shake … well, not anymore :)

I found out that MANGO blends perfectly with yogurts (plain or vanilla). Try it and you will end up with a superb, smooth and delicate pulp … that feels like a soft cloud in your mouth ….

Add a bit of muesli and whirl it all for a thick drinkable breakfast. Add a bit of crunchy cereals and enjoy a healthy dessert. Add a bit of honey and a few drops of lemon and simply drink it on its own.

These mango smoothies are super healthy: no additional sugar, no full fat milk or full yogurt, no ice-creams added!

My next smoothie adventure? I’m thinking: green and soy milk.

… with love to all smoothie lovers … Asia Jo

three ways to enjoy mango smoothie

three ways to enjoy mango smoothie

Breakfast Mango Smoothie:

1 peeled roughly cut mango, 250 ml plain low fat yogurt, 5 tbsp thick vanilla yogurt such as Danio, 4 tbsp muesli such as Dorset – mix it all up in a blender, pour into a glass or a bowl and gobble up!

mango smoothie

mango smoothie by Asia Jo

Dessert Mango Smoothie:

1 peeled roughly cut mango, 250 ml plain low fat yogurt, 3 tbsp thick vanilla yogurt such as Danio, 1 tsp lemon juice, 3 tbsp muesli such as Dorset – mix it all (excluding muesli) up in a blender, pour 3/4 of the mixture into a glass or a bowl and add 2 tbsp of muesli, pour the remaining smoothie and finish with the last tablespoon of muesli. Enjoy it!

mango smoothie

mango smoothie by Asia Jo

Fluffy Mango Smoothie:

1 peeled roughly cut mango, 250 ml plain low fat yogurt, 2 tbsp thick vanilla yogurt such as Danio, 1 tsp lemon juice, 1 heaped tsp honey – blend it all very well and pour into a glass. It’s heavenly good!

mango smoothie

mango smoothie by Asia Jo

PS:  You can easily change the proportions – do it just the way you like it – you can’t get it wrong!

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Do you fancy a posh but almost no-time-taking dessert ? If so, all you need is a a ripe mango and a couple of simple ingredients.

Trust me, this is an easy going recipe, you can’t go wrong with it. The only difficult thing about it is that you have to wait two hours until the mousse chills well in the fridge. I’m sure you can do that :)

Enjoy making this wonderful, creamy and  good-looking desert :)

Delicate mango mousse

Serves 2-3

mango mousse by Asia Jo

You will need:

1 large ripe mango, pealed, roughly chopped (reserve one small slice for decoration)

1/8 cup fresh orange juice

1/2 tbsp  lemon juice

1/2 cup powder sugar

pinch of salt

3/4 cup whipping cream, whipped (I used a ready-made whipping cream – normally I would prepare it myself but I still don’t know in which box I have my electric hand mixer)

fresh mint and finely diced mango slices, to decorate

Directions:

In a blender, blend the mango slices, salt, orange juice, lemon juice and sugar until the mixture has a smooth consistency. Pour the mixture into a bowl and fold gently in the whipping cream.  Chill in the fridge for 2-3 hours. Decorate with fresh mint leaves and chopped mango slices. Enjoy :)

Mango mousse

mango mousse by Asia Jo

Recipe source: www.southernfood.about.com

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They look absolutely fantastic.

They taste amazingly fresh.

They sound like a brilliant and quick idea.

What are they? They are my favourite lemon & raspberry muffins!

Feel free to fall in love with them.

♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡♡

Lemon raspberry mini muffins

Makes 14

Recipe adapted from bbcgoodfood.com

lemon raspberry muffins

lemon raspberry muffins @ frock & fork

You will need:

125 g self raising flour

75 g caster sugar

1 egg

70 ml vanilla yogurt

60 g melted butter

zest of 1/2 lemon

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

100 g raspberries, crushed slightly

icing sugar, for decoration

Directions:

Preheat oven to 180 ℃. Line mini muffin tray or silicon muffin cups with muffin cases. Sift the flour into a medium size bowl and add the sugar. Whisk egg and yogurt, add the melted butter, lemon zest and lemon juice, mix well throughly. Add the wet mixture into the dry one. Add the raspberries. Mix everything gently. Divide the mixture into the muffin cases. Bake for 20-30 minutes; until risen and golden. Remove from the oven, cool and eat them all!

lemon raspberry muffins

lemon raspberry muffins @ frock & fork

lemon raspberry muffins

lemon raspberry muffins @ frock & fork

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I don’t know about you, but for me weekends often call for homemade baking. I just love when the end of the week has that extra sweet dimension :) There is nothing better than a good cookie or a piece of cake to go with my  Saturday and Sunday espresso.

When I saw Isabelle’s lemon squares @ Eat My Cake Now, I knew straight away it would be a hit and something I would actually eat any time of the day. I have always liked lemon squares and always thought you need to make them Betty Crocker’s way, you know quite sugary – but not anymore! Isabelle’s amazing lemon square recipe offers an utterly superb twist. Not only she uses coconut but also condensed milk, which combined with lemon juice turns into some sort of soft cheese-type of creamy filling. Divine! Absolutely clever idea! I am sure you will adore this recipe as much as I did.

Please note, I didn’t tweak the recipe but you may want to modify it a bit to suit your needs and likes. I know some people don’t fancy too much lemon and this dessert is quite lemony. I personally love it. Ps: Those lemon squares taste like heaven after chilling in the fridge overnight.

Here is my version of Isabelle’s delish lemon squares:

Lemon Squares

Makes 14 (depending how big you want the squares to be)

lemon squares with coconut

lemon squares @ Frock & Fork

You will need:

90 g oatmeal
120 g  flour
12o g  coconut
70 g  brown sugar
180 ml melted butter
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
300 ml sweetened condensed milk
125 ml lemon juice

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 180 °C. Line 23 x 23 cm baking tray with baking paper.

In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients: flour, oatmeal, coconut, brown sugar, salt and baking powder. Pour  in the melted butter and mix well. In another bowl, combine condensed milk and lemon juice. Take half of the coconut & oatmeal mixture and place it in the baking tray. Pour all milk & lemon juice mixture. Crumble the remaining coconut & oatmeal mixture on top, pressing lightly. Bake in the centre of the oven for 30 minutes. Cool at least 30 minutes before cutting into squares, if still soft, cool completely and after that chill in the fridge; once set, cut into squares.

lemon squares with coconut

lemon squares @ Frock & Fork

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What a wet day we had in London yesterday! Drama! To avoid any melancholic feelings that the rain was portending, I baked a yummy apple cake. The recipe comes from Tracy’s blog Pink Purl. When I saw the nice photo, short list of ingredients and easy to follow instructions, I decided to bake her Norwegian apple cake immediately. I have changed the proportions a bit and substituted half of the flour with finely grained almonds but you can view the original recipe here: The Comfort of Apples.

Apple Cake from Pink Purl

apple cake

frock & fork

You will need:

1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup grained almonds
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp baking powder
3 apples, peeled and sliced

Topping:

1 tablespoons sugar

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

a small handful of sliced or chopped almonds

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 200 ℃. Line a round cake tin with baking paper and butter the sides. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Sieve and add the flour, grained almonds and baking powder.  Then add the egg and mixing well. Pour the mixture into the cake tin. Arrange the apple slices on top of the cake butter. Sprinkle everything with the topping mixture. Bake for 30 minutes. Cool the cake and serve with vanilla ice cream or icing sugar on top.

Enjoy this lovely autumn apple cake!

autumn apple cake

frock & fork

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I think I am becoming a cookie monster and for sure developing some sort of cookie addiction. I like the pretty cookies, the healthy ones, the chocolate ones, the old fashion ones, the quick ones, the fruity and nutty ones, the home baked ones and the fancy ones from Laduree too. I like them all with a lovely cup of tea.

Not long ago I came across Michelle’s blog – The Green Bite – and her amazing apricot-maple-oatmeal cookies. I am telling you – they turned out fantastically gooey and chewy! I made the cookies according to Michellle’s instructions, yet I added just a few small amendments.

Those cookies are absolutely tasty, delicious and they would easily make an excellent afternoon or even morning snack.

Btw, the apricot-maple-oatmeal cookies are FUN to make – be ready for a sticky job :)

To view the original recipe click here: A-M-O Cookies.

Apricot-maple-oatmeal cookies

apricot maple oatmeal cookies

by Asia(Jo)

You will need:

1 egg

1/3 cup softened butter

1/2 cup cane sugar

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 1/2 cup oats

2/3 cup dried apricots, chopped

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 190 ℃.

Beat softened butter, sugar, maple syrup, and vanilla extract together using a balloon whisk until creamy.  Add the lightly beaten egg and stir to incorporate. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and stir to combine. Add oats and apricots. Stir to combine.

Form small balls and place on the cookie sheet (use baking paper or grease the tray) pressing the cookie dough gently. Bake for 10-15 minutes, depending on your oven. Remove from oven and let the cookies rest for 1-2 minutes on the cookie sheet before removing and placing on a wire rack to cool completely.

Try and enjoy something new!

apricot maple oatmeal cookies

by Asia(Jo)

oatmeal cookies

by Asia(Jo)


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Today was a special day. After a couple of long years I rediscovered a fantastic song written by a friend of mine, Kasandra, who is a great artist and a newly born blogger. She posted her “Don’t wake up choking” song to her Wordfalls blog and I would listen to it throughout the whole day. It’s funny how much you appreciate something once you come across it again …. At the end of the day I shared the song with another friend of mine. Soon after we let ourselves totally enjoy the song’s bluesy feel …. perfect for today’s grey and wet weather.

Even though, I have madly felt in love with Kasandra’s music and its melancholy, at some point I felt an unusual joy. I decided to celebrate Kasandra’s talent, the song of the day and my feel-good mood. For this reason I made a small, luscious granola yogurt dessert.

This super easy meal can be eaten as breakfast, snack or dessert and is easily adjustable – add more or less yogurt, honey and cereals depending on your taste. You can’t go wrong with it!

Enjoy it because it’s healthy and delicious!

Granola yogurt

Serves 1

by Asia(Jo)

You will need:

4 tablespoons of Greek yogurt

2 tablespoons of honey

3 tablespoons of homemade granola or good quality musli (I used dorset cereals)

5-6 strawberries/raspberries or blueberries

a few nuts or pumpkin seeds, to garnish

Preparation:

Pour the yogurt into a glass or a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of honey, followed by the granola/cereals/musli. Add the remaining spoon of honey. Chop strawberries. Arrange the fruit on top of the yogurt/honey/cereals layers. Sprinkle everything with some nuts or seeds. Voila! How simple is that?

by Asia(Jo)

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I just successfully tested another fruit fool!

The recipe for mango fool comes from a bright new food magazine Dinner Tonight, which I bought a couple of days ago. The issue is full of recipes for quick suppers, weekend meals, side dishes and lunches, divine and instant desserts. There is hardly any articles so if you are looking for some travel inspired food reviews, kitchen equipment assessments, seasonal fruit and vegetable overviews or celebrity chefs recipes, refer to Delicious Magazine or Good Food. I found the recipes from Dinner Tonight quite impressive, yummy looking, quick and easy to follow, yet still creative and exciting. I am sure  it will be a useful source of reference when you plan a dinner party menu, weekend food or a super express meal for the weekdays.

Re the mango fool recipe, I found it quite unique. I liked the freshness of mango, the delicate lime flavour and the foamy, creamy, almost cloudy texture. You ought to try this yummy dreamy heaven!

Mango Fool

Serves 2-4

by Asia(Jo)

You will need:

2 ripe large mangos, peeled and stoned

150 ml double cream

1 x 250 g pot plain yogurt

zest and juice of 1/2 lime

2 cardamom pods, split and seeds crushed (I didn’t  this ingredient – I mark it as optional)

2-3 tablespoons clear honey

Preparation:

Puree the mango flesh in a food processor until smooth.

Whisk the cream to soft peaks, then stir in the yogurt and whisk a little more until thickened. Fold in most of the lime zest and juice, the cardamom and honey.

Spoon alternate layers of the creamy mixture and the mango puree into the glasses and decorate with the remaining zest. Serve chilled.

by Asia(Jo)




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You will love this blackberry fool that tastes fantastically creamy and delicious. It’s a lovely light and healthy dessert, thanks to blackberries, which are low in fat and high in fibre, vitamin A and calcium.

Enjoy the unusual taste of blackberries and give yourself a fibre boost!

(Please note you will need 2 hours for chilling this dessert)

Blackberry Fool

Serves 4

You will need:

450 g fresh or froze blackberries

25 g custard powder

40 g caster sugar

285 ml skimmed milk

115 g thick Greek yoghurt

1 teaspoon icing sugar

Preparation:

Put the custard powder into a bowl. Add 15 g of the caster sugar and blend to a smooth paste with about 4 tablespoons of the milk (use a hand wire whisk). Pour the rest of the milk into a small saucepan and bring to boil, and then stir the boiling milk into the custard powder. Return this mixture to a pan and bring back to the boil, stirring constantly until the custard has thickened and no trace of custard powder remains.

Pour the mixture into a bowl and allow to cool a little. Cover and place in a fridge for at least 1 hour to allow the fool to set.

Reserving 4 blackberries for garnish, put the rest into a pan with the remaining sugar and cook over a low heat for 7 minutes, until the fruit softens. Press the fruit through a sieve to make a puree. Whisk the chilled custard until very smooth, then whisk in the Greek youghurt and fold in the puree. Spoon into desert bowls and chill for 1 hour. Decorate with 2 fresh blackberries and dust with some icing sugar. Enjoy!

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Gift giving! I love it love it love it !

I consider buying or making gifts, wrapping them and attaching a small note as a very pleasurable and feel-good experience, especially when you don’t know the person and you need to make sure you got it just right.

Recently, I am in love with charity shops and all the bargains you can get there. Last weekend I spotted an amazing vintage tin box at Oxfam. I bought it immediately because the box was so unusual and original and I knew it would work perfectly as a cookie box for my friend’s parents whom I was just about to visit in Germany. I baked a dozen of soft and finger-licking raspberry cookies (recipe by Princess Misia, the baking guru from Let’s get stupid together) and put them in the vintage box. I have to say, those brown-pinky cookies in this old fashion box turned into a very charming present

Keep your eyes open for authentic tin boxes – they can be quite useful nearer Christmas time…

I can already imagine those beautiful Xmas cookies in your jars, tins and paper boxes you sourced yourself in charity shops, markets or grandma’s attics! Besides, it can be quite an interesting credit crunch yummy gift idea

Raspberry cookies a la Princess Misia

(http://letsgetstupid.wordpress.com/2009/08/30/raspberry-cookies/)

by Asia(Jo)

You will need:
150g butter, soft
150g brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup spelt flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup raspberries (fresh or frozen)

Preparation:
Preheat oven to 200°C. Sift flour and baking powder in a medium bowl. In separate bowl, cream butter with sugar using an electric mixer. Add vanilla extract and eggs and mix until smooth. Add dry ingredients and mix until fully incorporated. Stir in raspberries (watch out not to break them too much). Chill the dough in the fridge for about 30 min. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drop about 2 tablespoons of the dough per cookie into the baking sheet. Bake for 13-15 minutes until golden brown. Enjoy!

by Asia(Jo)

by Asia(Jo)



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Sometimes you get this feeling for something super yummy and sweet late at night. That’s what happened to me yesterday at about 9 p.m when I decided to make one of my best apple crisp recipes. This easy apple dessert, enhanced by a handful of blueberries, is just simply fantastic and tastes divine!

The apple crisp came out beautiful. It was a delish juicy joy! 

Try it for yourself and you wouldn’t be disappointed 

—————————————————————————————————-

Apple & Blueberry crisp IMG_5039

Serves 4-6

You will need:

6 large apples (e.g. Granny Smith)

230 g blueberries, fresh or frozen

the grated rind and juice of 1 lemon

sugar (optional)

For the topping:                                                                      

140 g plain flour

100 g light muscovado sugar (brown sugar)

110 unsalted butter, diced

170 – 230 g walnut pieces

Preparation:

Lightly grease a large shallow baking dish.

Preheat the oven to 190 ℃.

Peel, core, dice the apples. Put into a bowl with the blueberries, the grated lemon rind and lemon juice. Toss gently until thoroughly mixed. Add little sugar (1-2 tsp) to taste if using sour or very tart apples. Put the fruit into the prepared baking dish. To make the topping, combine the flour and sugar in a bowl. Add the butter and rub and squeeze into the flour mixture forming flakes or pea-sized lumps of dough. (I was a bit lazy last night and simply mixed the topping ingredients all together with a fork and it worked well). Stir in the nuts. Sprinkle the topping over the fruit. Bake for 30 minutes or until fruit is tender and the topping golden. Eat warm with ice cream, yogurt or creme fraiche.

(The recipe comes from The Baking Book by Collister & Blake)

by Asia(Jo)

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Yesterday I decided to prepare something special for lunch; something light; something spicy; something damn good. I browsed through my cook books and picked up a recipe by Jamie Olivier. I will be honest with  you – the preparation and cooking time takes a bit over an hour but you wouldn’t regret it! The highly unique flavour of this dish compensates everything! You will be enjoying an incredible taste of crispy lamb lettuce, sweet lychees and tender squid all coated in chili jam. Go for it!

Thai Spicy Squid Salad   IMG_2788

Serves 4

You will need:

4 medium-sized squid, cleaned

zest and juice of 2 lime

extra virgin olive oil

sea salt + freshly ground black pepper

4 big handfuls of lamb’s lettuce

455 g lychees, peeled, deseeded

2 fresh chilly, finally chopped

For the sweet chili jam:

4 fresh red chillies

1 red onion, peeled and halved

10 cloves of garlic, peeled

100 g fresh ginger, peeled

2 handfuls of fresh coriander

2 sticks of lemon grass, peeled and roughly chopped

1 tablespoon dried shrimps

150 ml sunflower oil

40 g palm sugar

Fish sauce, to taste

1) Make your chili jam: blitz up all the jam ingredients roughly in the food processor or blender, apart fro

2) Put the mixture in a wok or a pan and cook gently, stirring regularly, for aprox. 20 minutes on a slow simmer. Put back into a food processor and blitz again until very smooth. Return  the mixture to the pan, add the sugar an simmer slowly again for half an hour, stirring regularly. Season with fish sauce. Cool.  m the sugar and the fish sauce

3) Clean the squid and give it a good rinse. Cut the squid lengthwise. Lightly score the inside part in a criss-cross fashion. Grate finely your lime zest.

4) Get a wok or a pan really hot and add a lug of olive oil. Season the squid with salt and pepper and lay it in the wok, sprinkling with the lime zest on top. It normally needs 2 minutes to cook and should curl up at the edges.

5) Remove the squid from the heat, slice the squid up.

6) Add the sliced squid back to the pan with the chili jam and stir around until it coats the squid completely.  Add lime juice and 4 tablespoons of olive oil.

7) Scatter your squid over the leaves. Sprinkle everything with lychees and chilli. Spoon over a little of the juice from the wok.

Absolutely fantastic!

IMG_2810

by Asia(Jo)

by Asia(Jo)


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I think raspberries are really graceful and delicate! You must enjoy them before this wonderful seasonal fruit begins to  disappear from shop shelves.
Try this recipe and appreciate a tiny bit of naughtiness :) Mini cheese cakes are perfect as a snack, fancy dessert and gift for a best friend or lover!

Divine Individual Cheesecakes (makes 12)

IMG_2154

by Asia(Jo)

You will need:
For the base:
100 g wholemeal biscuits (I use McVitie’s The Original Digestive)
55g ground almonds
50 g unsalted butter, melted

For the cream cheese filling:

400 g cream cheese (I use Philadelphia)
100 ml soured cream
110 g caster sugar
1 free-range egg, plus 1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp grated lime zest
150 g raspberries
Icing sugar to dust

Preparation:
Preheat the oven to 160 C.
Line a 12-hole muffin tin (I use muffin silicon forms) with muffin paper cases. Crush the biscuits to fine crumbs, using a food processor or rolling pin. (I put biscuits in a sandwich bag and crush them with my hands or with a rolling pin).
Put the biscuits crumbs, ground almonds and melted butter into a bowl and stir thoroughly to combine the contents.
Press 1heaped tablespoon of the mixture into the base of each muffin case. Chill.
Beat the cream cheese, soured cream and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the egg first, then the egg yolk, vanilla and lime zest, beating well after each addition. Spoon the mixture over the bases, then sprinkle the raspberries on top (2-3 berries for each muffin form). Bake for 20 min or until the cheesecakes are puffed. Cool, then chill until ready to eat. Decorate with 1-3 raspberries and dust with icing sugar to serve.

Enjoy them!

* Source: Delicious. Magazine June Issue ‘09

mini cheesecake

by Asia(Jo)

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