There are times when I wonder what the hell I’m thinking. Deciding to cook a cake for the first time would be one of those times. Choosing to make it brownies would make it worse. You can guess that using a Portuguese recipe didn’t convince me it was any more sane an idea.
Still, if I can make it work, I’m guessing anyone can…
2/3 cup (115g) butter, chopped
6 ounces (170g) chocolate, chopped (I used a mix of G&B 70% and G&B Butterscotch)
1/4 cup (25g) good quality cocoa powder
3 large eggs
1 cup (200g) sugar (I prefer an unrefined caster or demerara sugar)
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup (140g) plain flour
1 cup Dulce de Leche (or Cajeta)
Heat the oven to 180c.
Line a 8-inch (20 cm) square pan with non-stick baking parchment with two strips at right angles to cover the bottom and sides of the pan.
Use a bain marie to melt the butter and chocolate.
Remove from heat and use an electric whisk to whisk in the cocoa. Then do the same with the eggs, one by one, then stir in the sugar, vanilla, and the flour. [I've been told that I should have used a hand whisk to make them lighter - I have no idea if this is true, but they tasted good attacked by a 'leccie whisk...]
Pour half the tasty gloop in the pan, then drop dollops of the dulche all over the pan. Use a knife to smooth it across pan, not getting too close to the edges. Then pour the rest of the mixture across the top.
Bake for 35 to 40 min.
The brownies are done when the centre has a slight crust and just starts to feel firm. Without letting the brownies cool, use the parchment to lift the brownies out of the pan and onto a cooling rack.
Once again, this is ‘Cuban’ with quote marks around it, because I’m told that this is about as Cuban as a dollar bill. It’s a great meatloaf that I make in a 1kg loaf for just two people because it makes a damned fine cold meat.
900g minced pork
1 large onion
4tsp tabasco sauce (I prefer chipotle tabasco)
75g fresh breadcrumbs
1 beaten egg
salt and pepper
2 tbsp mustard powder
1/2 cup tomato puree
2 tbsp malt vinegar
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 cup pineapple juice
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
2 tsp golden rum
1 cup water
Mix the pork, onion, chilli sauce, egg, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper together and make it into a loaf shape in a baking tin.
Mix the rest of it together in a jug and pour it over the top.
Cook it for 1 1/2 hours at 180c. Baste it with the sauce on a regular basis.
Another simple one…
Image of someone else’s idea of a Cuban sandwich, by rdpeyton under Creative Commons
There is a thing called a Cuban sandwich. It’s a delicacy that involves Cuban bread, pig, pickles and seven kinds of wonderful. The problem is that you can’t get it in the UK. We don’t have the bread. The pickles are somehow different and the cheese is just simply not the same.
So what we have left is a sandwich that’s about as Cuban as I am. Thankfully, however, it’s made from things that are available in the UK. Just don’t feed it to a Cuban. They’ll probably cry.
It’s a bit grand to call this a recipe, so we’ll dispense with the ingredients list…
- Get yourself some bread that’s somewhere along the lines of a panini. If you can do it with sourdough then all the better. Slice it in half, lengthways.
- Butter one half. For a good Cuban sandwich add some good thick ham and some thick cut roast pork or a little hog roast meat. Or, if we’re already too Cuban for you, maybe some roast chicken instead of pork.
- Put on some sliced cheese. Jarlsburg seems to work well. As does Port Salut. Good Cuban cheeses…
- Add sliced dill pickle. Or pickled cucumber. Or gerkin. Or whatever the hell you call them in your part of the world.
- Then, on the other half of the bread, you should smear some of that travesty that is American Mustard. You know, that bright yellow crap that is as spicy as yoghurt. Alternatively you could do as I do and use some Branston Lime and Chilli Mayonnaise…
- Put it together and stick it on a panini grill. Or wedge it in a Foreman grill. Or stick it in a fryingpan and hit it with a hammer. Whatever your preferred method it should end up thinner and warm, with the cheese going melty.
Image by Gret@Lorenz under Creative Commons
Churros have been made and they were good. They were so good that it’s time to put the recipe up here for you and for me. Yay for the internets – I can publish things for you guys and make sure I don’t lose things at the same time…
- 240ml water
- 2 tbs brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 75g butter
- 160g white flour
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 150g icing sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
Get some oil up to about 190°c in the deep fat frier or frying pan.
Put the water, sugar, salt and butter in a decent sized pan and get it boiling. The butter has to melt.
Remove it from the heat and stir in the flour. Keep mixing it until it’s solid.
Beat the eggs and add the vanilla. Mix them in to the buttery floury mixture.
Once it’s gone back to being solid again, put it in to a biscuit press and squeeze it into the hot fat.
Let them fry until they look like the ones in the picture (turning part way if you need to), hook them out and let them drain a little before you drop them in the mixture of cinnamon and icing sugar that you have.
You can only cook a few at a time, so try not to eat one batch before the next batch is cooked. If you do then you’ll have no idea how many you made and will be unable to tell your adoring web fans how many this lot makes. I’ll just say that GB and I didn’t eat any dinner after stuffing our faces… :)