Thursday, March 29, 2012

Quik Stik Lite Lemonade - product review


A really good alternative to water or soda. We are trying to loose weight and need to drink often so this makes a change from water

With the Sqwincher "Lite" Qwik Stik, you can enjoy the great taste you expect from Sqwincher available without any carbohydrates or calories in these convenient, single-serve pouches. Just tear open the handy pouch, add to your favorite 20 oz. bottled water, shake the bottle gently and enjoy all the benefits of Sqwincher "Lite". A perfect solution for diabetics or anyone who monitors their overall daily intake of carbohydrates and calories. "Lite" contains the same electrolyte content as regular Sqwincher (high in potassium and low in sodium to aid the body in replenishing essential elements lost to heat stress and fatigue) without carbohydrates or sugars.

  • Sqwincher helps prevent dehydration and lost work time by enabling the body to quickly absorb replacement minerals
  • Simply tear open the Qwik Stik and add to a 20 oz. bottle of water
  • Zero carb / zero calorie formula
  • Single-serve Sqwincher Lite pouches are easy to store and transport

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Garibaldi Biscuits

I am yearning for these biscuits - i must have ate a zillion kilos of them as a child....difficult to find in the states...
The Garibaldi biscuit consists of currants in a plain biscuit, best enjoyed with tea or coffee. They are also called dead fly biscuits, because the currants resemble dead flies!!They consist of a dry, not too sweet dough, a shiny glazed top,  squashed currants and the brilliant device of leaving strips of five biscuits joined together, like perforated cardboard. This biscuit is named after Giuseppe Garibaldi, an Italian general and leader in the fight to unify Italy. It was first manufactured by Peak Freans in 1861 after Garibaldi visited England.
I actually found them for sale here in the Vermont Country Store
Had a shot at making them....not quite the same thing but they will do for now!
7oz plain flour
1oz cornflour
2oz caster sugar
pinch of salt
2oz butter
1 egg yolk
a little milk
4oz currants
egg white to glaze
Preheat oven to 400°F and prepare a baking sheet. Sift the flour and cornflour into a bowl with the sugar and salt. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
Squash the currents with a fork
Add the egg yolk and mix to a stiffish dough with sufficient milk. Turn out onto a floured surface and roll out thinly to a long thin rectangle. Trim the edges square and sprinkle one half of the dough evenly with currants.
Fold over the dough and press the edges together. Roll with a floured rolling pin to about ¼ inch thick, cut into convenient squares or rectangles and brush with egg white to glaze. Prick with a fork to make the little holes.
Place on the baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes until golden brown.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Easter Treats - FIGOLLI!

Figolli are Traditional Maltese almond Pastries baked for Easter. They consist of pastry figures filled with a ground almond mixture and covered with royal and glace icing. The traditional shapes are men, women, fish, lamb and baskets but nowadays you can also find heart shape, butterflies, rabbits and cars. The human shapes usually have paper faces stuck on to the icing.  They are decorated with glace icing and royal icing and finished off with a chocolate egg stuck in the middle.

My Grandma had metal forms that she would use to cut out the forms, or even bake the forms in. They were made by a local metal worker and could be bought at the market or some specialty stores. I don't think it is possible to buy them any more but I still have a couple of them and they allow you to make the Figolli almost like a small low pie.

yields approx 4-5 depending on the size of your shapes
14 oz self raising flour+ 1 teaspoon baking powder,sifted
6 oz margarine,
rind of a large lemon,grated
4 tbs sugar,
2 eggs, beaten
and a little fresh milk to bind if necessary.

Make Pastry
Mix the dry ingredients, add the margarine, eggs and milk if necessary - work to a smooth dough.

20 oz ground almonds,
8oz icing sugar+12 oz sugar or 20 oz icing sugar,
juice of 1/2 lemon,
1 tbs brandy.
Mix all in one stage and allow to chill for at least 1 hour in the fridge.

Heat oven to 325F.
Roll out a piece of pastry until it is 1/2 inch thick on a well-floured surface.
Cut into desired shapes (Figolli are traditionally cut into the shape of a bird, a fish or a duck and the size of each Figolla is between 8 to 10 inches).
You need two cut-outs for each Figolla.
Spread the filling on one of the cut-outs.
Place the other cut-out on top and press the edges to seal.
Brush the top of the Figolli with the beaten egg.
Bake until the Figolla turns to a golden colour.
Let the Figolla cool down and then decorate with coloured icing.
You can also cover with chocolate.
Place a hollow chocolate egg in the center of each Figolla using some soft icing to hold it in place.
Figolli can be really elaborate - with cut out pictures, richly decorated etc etc - I prefer the iced ones - with the Easter egg on top!


Meaty meatloaf! great cold in a sandwich!

Serves 8

2 tbs butter
1 onion, chopped fine, 1 cup
6 ounces white mushrooms, trimmed and sliced thin
1 tbs tomato paste
½ cup low sodium chicken broth, plus 3 tablespoons
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin
½ slice hearty white sandwich bread with crusts, torn into pieces
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
¾ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon dried thyme
1 pound ground pork
1 pound 85 percent lean ground beef

1/2 cup ketchup
1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 cup cider vinegar
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar

1.  For the Meatloaf: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Fold heavy-duty aluminum foil to form 9 by 5-inch rectangle. Center foil on wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet. Poke holes in foil with skewer (about half an inch apart). Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray.
2.  Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and mushrooms; cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, until browned, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to low, add 3 tablespoons broth and garlic; cook, scraping bottom of pan to loosen any browned bits, until thickened, about 1 minute. Transfer mushroom mixture to large bowl to cool.
3.  Whisk eggs, ½ cup chicken broth, and soy sauce together in bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over egg mixture and let sit until gelatin softens, about 5 minutes.
4. Process sandwich bread in a food processor until finely ground, yielding 1/3 cup breadcrumbs.  Add cooled mushroom mixture, softened gelatin mixture, parsley, Dijon, pepper, and dried thyme to breadcrumbs and pulse 10 times, until mushrooms are finely chopped, scraping down bowl as necessary. Return to large bowl.  Add pork and ground beef and mix well using hands to evenly combine.
5.  Transfer meat mixture to foil rectangle and shape into 9 by 5-inch loaf using wet hands. Bake meatloaf until thermometer registers 155 degrees, 75 to 90 minutes.  Remove meatloaf from oven and turn on broiler.

6.  For the Glaze: While meatloaf cooks, combine all ingredients in small saucepan; bring to simmer over medium heat and cook, stirring, until thick and syrupy, about 5 minutes.
7. Spread half of glaze evenly over cooked meatloaf; place under broiler and cook until glaze bubbles and begins to brown at edges, about 2 minutes.  Remove meatloaf from oven and spread evenly with remaining glaze; place back under broiler and cook until glaze is again bubbling and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes longer.  Let meatloaf cool about 20 minutes before slicing.
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All the recipes here have either been sent to me, adapted by me or found on the web. If I know the source I always give credit to the author/website. If you know of a source I may have missed please let me know.