Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Avocado and Prawn Linguine (Linguine all'Avocado e Gamberetti)

Avocado and Prawn Linguine (Linguine all'Avocado e Gamberetti)


This is the thing: I can't resist sales and more so if they have something I really like on sale. In this case on the weekend I went with the current wife to do some grocery shopping -advise to all of you guys: always feed the wife before going grocery shopping otherwise you end buying twice as much as you planned) and they had avocados and mangoes on sale. I just couldn't resist.

The current wife loves avocados as much as bread, milk, chocolate, food, junk food, pop, ice cream..... so is easy to imagine that a bag of avocados won't last long at my place. I always ask if she wants a tortilla when eating Mexican and she always answers: "is there any avocado?" if the answer is yes, then she does and if the answer is no then she still wants some but without the happy-happy face.

Also I listen  and pay attention to my readers, more so if they are whiners and complainers, like the pseudo-cousin I have. So here, a fast and tremendously tasty meal in... 20 minutes (for you pseudo-cousin will take an hour by the time you translate this, but we still love you).

Honestly this is a fantastic meal. Easy to make and so (SO) delicious. Try and see. It can't get better than this. If you have a restaurant this is a great recipe to get some extra cash as the special of the day (prawn + avocado = $$$$ in a restaurant!...hmmmm...), now if you actually name it the original Italian name then it will be $$$$$$$$$$$. Ha!

Avocado and Prawn Linguine (Linguine all'Avocado e Gamberetti)

Cooking Time: 20 Minutes   Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

400 g  Linguine pasta or similar

400 g Medium size Prawns (peeled with tails left)

1 1/2 Avocado

2 Tbs Grated Parmesan Cheese

2 Tbsp Lime juice

4 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Garlic Clove finely chopped

1 Fresh Shallot, chopped

- Salt to taste

- Parmesan Cheese at serving time 

Cooking Instructions
  • 1. Cut the avocados in half, remove the core and spoon out the flesh and put it in a mixer of food processor (I use a small food processor). Add the parmesan cheese (the 2 Tbsp..full not just exactly though) and mix until smooth -about a minute-

  • 2. Add the 2 tablespoons of olive oil and mix again until incorporated and creamy, then add the lime juice. Add salt to taste and reserve.

  • 3. Bring to a boil a large pot and add salt and a bit of olive oil (I don’t do this but “some people” do…I don’t see the point but is up to you). Once is boiling add the pasta so we cook it while we prepare the prawns.

  • 4. In a medium size frying pan warm up between 2 and 4 tablespoons of olive oil -depends on the size of your frying pan…small use 2, big use 4). Add the chopped garlic and stir for about a minute, until starts to look light brown, then add the shallot and mix, then add the prawns and cook. Stir frequently and make sure that all prawns are well cooked to perfection (they turn pink). Reserve

  • 5. By now the pasta should be ready…drain it perfectly and mix it with the avocado mix and with the warm prawn-shallot mix. Fold until all is incorporated and serve immediately.

  • 6. Once is served each individual can add as much or as little grated parmesan cheese on top and…

  • 7. Enjoy !

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Mojito Cupcakes !

Mojito Cupcakes!

Winter is coming...in Westeros. Here is Spring looking forward to Summer so, in order to welcome Winter in Westeros the way to go is...to celebrate! Mojitos to say good-bye to the 6 season long Summer and get ready for Winter. Honestly I can't even imagine that the Night King (ugly as hell) would say no to a fantastic and heavily rum loaded Mojito Cupcake. If John and his ban are smart, they should be baking like crazy: lots of mouths to feed BUT, I guarantee that after four or five of these each...they will gladly stay in Summer land and ditch the ugly king. I would.

The wife eat all the Margarita Cookies and wanted more, so to make a small change I modified Lawren Moneta's recipe and the end result was fantastic. She suggested a meringue-butter topping but I am not crazy about meringue and even less would be the current wife once she takes one to work every morning. I substituted with a butter topping with rum and honestly is absolutely great.

So, at the end of the day, sure, Winter is coming but while that happens let's have a mojito cupcake eating contest and see who wants to play "let's memorize the huge title of Khaleesi: the Queen of Meereen, Queen of Andals, the Rhoynar Rhoynar and the First Men, Lady Regnant to the Seven Kingdoms, Protector of the Realm, Khaleesi of the Great Sea, Breaker of Chains and Mother of Dragons (they should add "the Queen of dramatic entrances and the Queen of flammable clothing".

Mojito Cupcakes  


Cooking Time: 120 Minutes   Makes 12 servings

Ingredients

CUPCAKES

1⁄2 Cup (125 ml) whole milk

 1⁄2 Cup+2tbsp(125ml+30ml) packed fresh mint leaves, divided, plus extra for garnish

 11⁄2 Cups (375 ml) all-purpose flour

11⁄2 Tsp (7 ml) baking powder

1⁄4 Tsp (1 ml) salt

1⁄2 Cup (125 ml) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 Cup + 1 tbsp (265 ml) granulated sugar, divided

2 Large eggs

2 Limes, zested and juiced, plus extra lime slices for garnish

6 oz (125 ml) rum, divided (4 oz and 2 oz)

1⁄2 Tsp (2 ml) vanilla extract

- thin lime wedges and fresh mint, for garnish

RUM BUTTERCREAM

175 g Unsalted butter, room temperature

400 g Icing Sugar

1 oz Rum



Baking Instructions
  1. In a small saucepan, stir together the milk and the 1⁄2 cup of the fresh mint leaves (extract won’t work!) over medium heat. Warm until steaming, remove from heat, cover and let steep for 30 minutes.
  2. Strain through a  fine- meshed sieve into a small bowl, pressing on mint leaves to extract  flavored milk. Discard mint and set milk aside to cool.

3.  Preheat oven to 325˚F . Line 2 standard-sized muffin tins with paper liners and set aside.

4. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together  four, baking powder and salt.

5. In bowl of a stand mixer  fitted with paddle attachment, beat together butter and 1 cup (250 ml) sugar on medium-high speed until smooth, about 4 minutes. 

6. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing to combine after each one.

7. Beat in lime zest and juice, rum and vanilla extract until thoroughly incorporated. Add  flour mixture in three batches, alternating with  flavored milk in two batches.


8. Mix just until incorporated. Using a rubber spatula, give batter one last stir. Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. 
9. Bake, rotating pans after 12 minutes, until cakes spring back when touched and a wooden skewer inserted only has a few moist crumbs attached, about 25 minutes total.

10. While cupcakes bake, we are going to prepare the syrup, so combine the remaining 2 oz of rum, 2 tbsp of the mint and 1 tbsp of sugar in a small saucepan and warm over medium heat until sugar has melted and mixture is just warm, about 8 minutes. Remove pan from heat, cover and let steep.

11. Carefully remove cooked cupcakes from muffin tins and allow to cool
on a wire rack for 8 minutes. Brush top of cupcakes with infused rum syrup and allow to cool completely.

12. While cupcakes cool, let’s make the Rum Buttercream.

13. On your mixer bowl combine the room temperature butter with the icing sugar and mix for about 6 minutes until the mix is smooth and you can’t feel the sugar in your mouth, then add the rum and mix for another 2 minutes. You should have a very soft and runny butter mix. That is what we are looking for.

14. Using a bag pipe, decorate the top of the muffins and garnish with a fresh mint leaf and a thin lime slice (I didn’t do that as limes are so expensive and the lime slices will go to waste, but is up to you!)

15. Put in the fridge for an hour so the butter gets harder. Then serve and…


16. Enjoy!