- 2 leeks (white part only)
- 1 medium pie pumpkin or sugar pumpkin (about 1.5 kg)
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Some heavy whipping cream or sour cream (optional)
- Some fresh herbs (cilantro, green onion, parsley) to garnish
- Wash and chop the leeks.
- Wash the pumpkin and cut it in half horizontally. Scrape the inside of the pumpkin clean with the spoon or ice cream scoop (you can use the seeds for another recipe).
- Peel and cut into regular cubes.
- In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Cook and stir leeks until they are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add pumpkin cubes and cook for 5-7 more minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Transfer the veggies into a large pot. Add just enough water to cover them, and bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper. Simmer about 15 minutes until the pumpkin is cooked.
- Puree the soup with an immersion blender or in a food processor. Add a little more boiling water if the soup is too thick. Taste for flavor, and feel free to add more salt or pepper.
- Serve hot, with sour or heavy whipping cream and fresh herbs.
For a special presentation:
- Cut off the top of a small pumpkin and scrape the inside.
- Before adding the soup, heat the pumpkin for few minutes in the oven, then add the hot soup and serve immediately.
Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles is one delicacy that no one can refuse. The roasted hazelnut compliments the rich cacao powder. Store the truffles in container in the fridge for up to 5 days, but they will disappear from the fridge a lot faster, trust me on this.
Chocolat Hazelnut Truffles
- 30 g hazelnuts
- 220 ml heavy whipping cream
- 250 g dark chocolate (60-70% cacao)
- 2 Tbsp cacao powder
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread the nuts in an even layer on the baking sheet, and roast it for 10-15 minutes. Stirring every 3 minutes. Check the nuts. You are looking for the color to be a few shades darker. When the nuts are browned and smell nutty, remove from the oven and transfer onto a plate. Cool it and clean from the flakes. I like my truffles extra tiny, so I cut each hazelnut in half. You don't have to cut them if you are making large truffles.
- Bring the heavy cream to a boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate chips. Wait 1-2 minutes until chocolate melts.
- Whisk until smooth. Place it in the frizzer for about 2 hours, until firm enough to roll.
- Use a teaspoon or small cookie scoop to portion the ganache, hide one hazelnut inside each piece, roll the balls between hands, until smooth and place on a plate.
- Roll in cacao powder.
- Refregirate for at list 1 hour.
French open-faced pie from puff pastry with buttery mushroom filling. To save time, I use canned sliced mushrooms. But you can use fresh ones as well.
Quiche With Mushrooms
- 1 sheet all butter puff pastry
- 15 g butter (or olive oil)
- 1 onion
- 250 g canned sliced mushrooms (drained)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 3 eggs
- 150 ml heavy cream( 35%)
- 5-6 thin slices hard cheese
- fresh parsley
- pinch nutmeg (optional)
- Peel and cut the onion. In a medium skillet, heat oil or butter until hot, add onion and sauté for about 3 minutes. Add sliced mushrooms and sauté for another 7-8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lay the puff pastry on a parchment paper and transfer it onto a baking sheet. Prick all over with a fork.
- Evenly spoon the mushrooms mix on top.
- In a bowl, whisk together eggs and cream. Season with salt and pepper. Pour over the mushrooms.
- Place the cheese slices all over the pie. Sprinkle with nutmeg.
- Bake on the bottom rack for about 35 minutes, until golden.
- Garnish with herbs before serving.
Apple Sharlotka cake is one of the most popular desserts that each Russian kid will remember from their childhood. The recipe is so simple that you don’t even need to write it down. It will be very easy to remember once you’ve made it: 3 apples, 3 eggs, 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of flour. That’s it, enjoy!
Russian Apple Cake Sharlotka
- 3 big apples (sour)
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 tsp confectioner's sugar (optional)
- Preheat oven to 380 degrees F. Grease and flour a round cake pan or line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper.
- Wash, peel and dice apples into 1-inch pieces. Lay out the diced apples on the bottom of the pan.
- Using a mixer beat eggs with sugar, until its two times in volume. Using a spatula carefully fold in sifted flour. Pour the batter over the apples.
- Bake for about 45 minutes or until а toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Once the cake cools off a little, transfer to plate.
- Dust it with powdered sugar before serving.
Deviled eggs are the perfect healthy appetizers and always welcome at a party. This is very easy recipe of stuffed eggs with softened butter and a bit of garlic.
- 10 hard boiled eggs
- 2 tsp softened butter
- 1 1/2 Tbsp mayonnaise
- 2 garlic cloves
- salt to taste
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper
- fresh dill
- Carefully peel the eggs and slice them in half lengthwise. Remove yollk and transfer it to a medium bowl.
- Mash the yolk with a fork until crumbly.
- Add the mayonnaise, butter,garlic, salt and pepper and combine until incorporated.
- Place the mixture in a piping bag fitted with a medium tip (or teaspoon), pipe the yollk mixture into the whites.
- Garnish with fresh dill.
- Refrigerate before serving.
You don’t have to be a famous chef or spend days in your kitchen to make a delicious dessert. You can make this amazing, stress-free chocolate tart in no time, especially when using a ready to bake pie crust. The hardest part is to wait for chocolate to firm up, then you can finally try a piece…. or two 🙂
Stunning French Chocolate Tart
- 1 sheet ready to bake pie crust
- 360 ml heavy cream
- 300 g dark chocolate (60-70% cacao)
- For easy removal, grease the bottom of the tart pan with butter or line the bottom with parchment paper. Roll the dough out, transfer to the tart pan, trim the excess dough and prick all over with a fork. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place the tart in the oven for 20 minutes, or until golden. Remove from the oven and set aside on the serving plate.
- Meanwhile, bring the heavy cream to a boil, then pour over the chocolate. Let stand for 2 minutes. Stir gently until the mixture becomes smooth and dark.
- Pour chocolate ganache into crust to the top. Cool completely. If you made this dessert during the hot summer, it will be the best to refrigerate it. If it's not too hot in your kitchen, let it stand on the counter top at room temperature.
Creamy Vanilla And Chocolate Jelly is a very light and airy dessert, with a touch of sweetness. Who wouldn’t love chocolate and vanilla goodness in a cup? I always try to limit myself. This dessert is so simple to make and a great way to end a special dinner. It can be done the day before.
Creamy Vanilla And Chocolate Jelly
- 1/2 cup water cold
- 3 packs Knox original gelatin unflavored
- 500 ml heavy whipping cream
- 500 ml whole milk
- 8 Tbsp sugar
- 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
- 60 ml whole milk
- 3 Tbsp water cold
- 1/2 pack Knox original gelatin unflavored
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 1 Tbsp cacao powder
- In a small bowl, sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup of cold water. Let stand for 5 minutes.
- In a large saucepan, bring milk, heavy whipping cream, vanilla extract and sugar to a simmer, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved.
- Add gelatin mixture and stir until dissolved. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Let it cool for 5 minutes, strain through a fine sieve.
- Divide the mixture between 12 small glasses and place them in the fridge until firm (2-3 hours).
- In a small saucepan, add milk and water. Sprinkle gelatin on top and set aside for 3 minutes. Add cacao powder and sugar, mix well.
- Place over medium heat and heat until barely boiling, stirring constantly.
- Remove from the heat and strain through a fine sieve. Let the mix cool down.
- Remove the glasses from the refrigerator and pour the chocolate mixture on top of the vanilla jelly.
- Refrigerate for 2 more hours.
With a few simple tricks, you really can make this Creamy Mushroom Pate at home. Skip the store bought spreads and pates. Making it yourself is so, so easy and will be way tastier than just about anything from the deli department.
- 250 g mushrooms washed
- 1 medium onion
- 3 cloves garlic
- 8 oz cream cheese at room temperature
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 7 Tbsp olive oil
- green onion optional
- Slice the mushrooms.
- Peel and cut onion into half moons.
- Peel and mince garlic.
- Place a large frying pan over a high medium heat. Add 5 Tbsp of olive oil and sauté mushrooms for 10 minutes. Constantly stirring. Remove from heat and let cool.
- Meanwhile, place a small frying pan over medium heat, add 2 Tbsp of olive oil and onion, and cook until golden brown.
- Add minced garlic and sauté for one minute. Turn off the heat and allow it to cool.
- Put half of the mushrooms and onion with garlic into a food processor or blender and pulse several times to combine.
- Add the remaining mushrooms and cream cheese and puree.
- Add salt and pepper and mix it with wooden spoon.
- Serve on crostini, with green onion or any fresh herbs.