New site for Dream of Cakes

Dear Friends
From now and onwards I will be posting my recipes to a new site.
Dream of Cakes has its own domain:
http://www.dreamofcakes.net

Thank you for your understanding and your support.
I am looking forward to seeing you all there.

Best Regards
Eftychia
e-mail: eftychia@dreamofcakes.net

Posted in Desserts, How to..., Salads, Uncategorized, Various Dishes | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Black Eyed Beans cooked in Fresh Tomato Sauce

Black Eyed Beans, Louvia as we call them in Cyprus, or Fassolia Mavromatika as they are called in Greece are my favorite kind of beans.  In Cyprus the traditional recipe is to cook them in boiling water with herbs, and serve them in an olive oil and lemon sauce.  This recipe is quite nice and simple to make but I decided that I had enough of tradition so I decided to experiment.  Et voila…  Here comes my new version of Black Eyed Beans recipe.
 
 
Like most beans, black-eyed beans are rich in soluble fibre which helps to eliminate cholesterol from the body. They are a good source of folate, potassium, copper, phosphorous and manganese. As a high-potassium, low-sodium food they help reduce blood pressure. Not only are they low in fat, but when combined with grains, beans supply high quality protein which provides a healthy alternative to meat or other animal protein. Beans also contain protease inhibitors which frustrate the development of cancerous cells.
 
Diet Notes:
To avoid flatulence introduce beans gradually into your diet. In addition, to avoid indigestion when using dried beans, follow cooking instructions carefully, as most beans require several hours soaking in order to destroy the bean toxin lectin. If using canned beans, please note that most varieties are canned in a salt solution, so rinse well before using.
 
Calories in Black-Eyed Beans:
1 cup cooked = 227 calories
 This information was taken from: Diet Foods & Nutrition
http://www.annecollins.com/diet_foods/black-eyed-beans.htm
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tomato and celery sauce preparation before adding the beans. 

 

The beans were added in the sauce.

 
     
Coriander added just before serving.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The meal is ready to be served.  As a side dish I usually add tuna fish and a piece of bread.
 
 
This is a delicious dish that you and especially your children will love.  The combination of tomatoes and celery will give these beans an extraordinary taste that will make you want more and more!
Here is the full recipe as I created it.  Enjoy!!!
 
Black Eyed Beans cooked in Fresh Tomato Sauce
Ingredients
300gr black-eyed beans (peas)
3 large tomatoes, peeled and smashed
1 stick celery, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
½ cup coriander, chopped
Salt
Pepper
 
Preparation Method
1)  Soak the beans overnight in cold water; drain and place in a pan with water, enough to cover the beans.  Bring to the boil.  As soon as the water starts boiling drain the beans and replace the water with fresh one; repeat the same procedure for three times. *
2)  When step (1) is finished, add enough water in the pan to cover the beans and a bit of salt; simmer for 2 hours, or until the beans are tender.  Drain the beans and set aside. **
3)  In a saucepan heat the olive oil.  Add the celery, garlic and tomatoes and simmer for about 5 minutes.
4)  Add the beans and simmer until there is no liquid in the saucepan.
5)  Season with salt and pepper.
6)  Finally add the coriander. Give it a stir and serve.
 
*    This procedure is done because we want the beans to keep a nice white colour.
**  Due to lack of time, I usually cook the beans in a pressure cooker for about 20 minutes.

I am linking this recipe to My legume love affair, hosted by Simona, of Briciole.

Posted in Various Dishes | 10 Comments

Cream Pies with Caramel Topping, baked in oven

I watched on TV a similar recipe from Jamie Oliver  a few days ago.  These pies are really very easy to make and they are delicious in taste.  I added vanilla extract in the cream filling and I increased the baking time, since I found out that the puff pastry needed a bit more time to be baked than the original recipe. 
Below you can find all the steps in making the recipe.  I hope you like it…!
 

 

The recipe goes as follows:
  
Cream Pie with Caramel Topping, baked in oven
 
For the pie
425gr puff pastry (1 square sheet)
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp cinnamon
 
For the filling
1 cup of fresh milk
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
 
For Topping
4 tbsp caster sugar
200ml fresh cream (1 cup)
 
 
Method of Preparation
 
Pastry
- Preheat oven to 180ºC/350ºF.
- Lay pastry on a non stick silicone sheet.
- Sprinkle on the pastry cinnamon and sugar.
- Roll puff pastry and cut it into six equal pieces.
- Push down with your fingers each piece, and then place each one into a six cup cake pan.
- Bake for about 15 minutes.
 
Filing
- Mix with a whisk all ingredients; then fill the baked pastry as it is in the cup cake pan.
- Bake for another 25-30 minutes.
- Set aside; allow to cool for 5 minutes.
- Remove baked pies from cup cake pan.
 
Topping
- Put the sugar in a heavy-based saucepan and simmer until sugar melts without stirring; then pour the fresh cream and stir all the way until melted sugar and fresh cream are blended.
- Pour caramel on top of the baked pies and serve.
 
Posted in Desserts | 39 Comments

Green Beans and Chicken

 
This is a dish that I cook very often.  Mostly because it is very easy to make and healthy as well.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Here you can see the chicken which was fried in olive oil for about 10 minutes, and the fresh, peeled, mashed tomatoes which were added in the process.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Frozen Green Beans added in the saucepan
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
After a stir, all ingredients are in the saucepan ready to be cooked.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The dish is almost ready. We need to allow the liquid to be reduced a bit more.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Food is ready to be served. 
 
 
In this post you can find the recipe as I cook it and a variation of it.  The variation recipe makes it a bit more rich in flavor and it adds a bit more calories to each portions.
 
Green Beans and Chicken with Tomatoes
6 Servings
 
1 chicken cut into 6 pieces (or 6 chicken portions)
1 kg of thin Green Beans (frozen)
3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
3 big fresh tomatoes (peeled and mashed)
1 glass of warm water
Salt
Pepper
 
Preparation Method
1) Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan and add the chicken portions.  Fry for 10 minutes in both sides until chicken becomes golden brown.
2) Add the tomatoes; simmer for 2-3 minutes.
3) Stir in the Green Beans; add water, salt and pepper to taste, and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the liquid is reduced to minimum.
4) Serve warm.
 
Variation
- You can use the same quantity of fresh Green Beans instead of frozen.
- Before you add the chicken pieces in the frying pan you can add 1 chopped onion. 
- At stage four (4) of preparation method, you can add chicken or vegetable stock instead of water.
- Finally, you can omit chicken and make it a vegan dish.
Posted in Various Dishes | 24 Comments

Pasta with Basil and Cashew Nuts for Vegans, and A second variation with Egg and Fresh Cream

Pasta – 1st Recipe Variation                      Pasta – 2nd Recipe Variation
 
 
I have a lot of friends who are vegans, so many times I make variations in my traditional recipes in order to create dishes that they can have.  These two recipes take only 15-20 minutes to be prepared and they are both equally delicious.  For the vegan variation you can omit the cheese on top.
 
 
Ingredients – Vegans Recipe                           Ingredients - 2nd Variation Recipe
 
 
The difference between the first recipe and the second lays between two ingredients: egg and fresh cream.  (Cheese was included in both recipes)
 
 
The first step is to cook pasta in a casserole of boiling water.  Do not forget to add salt and vegetable stock in the water.  Cooking time is different for different kinds of pasta, so I suggest you always read the written instruction which you can find on the pasta package.
 
    Chopped Basil and Garlic
   Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Cashew Nuts
   Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Cashew Nuts, Garlic, Basil and Parsley.
 
At this stage is where the 1st Recipe is almost ready.   All you have to do is add the pasta to the saucepan, stir it until all ingredients combine and serve; with or without cheese on top!   
 
 
 
 
2nd Recipe Variation 
If you decide that you wish to have the 2nd Variation then all you have to do is to combine the fresh cream and egg and then add it to the pasta, which was first combined with the cashew nuts and the other ingredients.
 
The pasta is ready to be served.  Enjoy…!
 
 
 Below you can find the full recipes.
 
Pasta with Basil and Cashew Nuts for Vegans, and
A second variation with Egg and Fresh Cream
 
Ingredients
350gr dried pasta, or
700gr fresh pasta
80gr halloumi cheese, graded
70gr ladotiri cheese, graded
80gr raw cashew nuts
2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
20gr fresh parsley, chopped
25 basil leaves, chopped
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 vegetable stock
Salt
Black Pepper
 
For the 2nd Variation add
170ml Fresh Cream
1 egg
 
Preparation Method
1)  Cook pasta in a casserole of boiling water, (adding the vegetable stock and one tablespoon of salt while boiling), allowing 5-6 minutes for fresh pasta or 10-12 minutes for dried pasta, or until it is cooked through, but still has ΄bite’.  Drain the pasta thoroughly in a colander.
2)  In a saucepan add olive oil, cashew nuts and cook for 1 minute; add garlic, basil and parsley and cook for another 30 seconds.
 
a) 3)  If you decide to have the vegan variation transfer the pasta to the saucepan and stir all ingredients until combined.
4)  Season with salt and black pepper to taste.
5)  Serve hot with graded halloumi and ladotiri cheese on top.
 
b) 3) If you decide to have the 2nd variation beat together the egg and fresh cream.
4)  Transfer the pasta to the saucepan and then add the egg mixture; stir all ingredients until combined.
5)  Season with salt and black pepper to taste.
6)  Transfer pasta to a serving plate and serve with the graded halloumi and ladotiri cheese.
 
 
 
 
Posted in Various Dishes | 10 Comments

Easy Vanilla Ice Cream Dessert

When we decide to eat ice-cream we usually choose to buy different flavours.  Have you ever thought that a plain vanilla ice-cream can be transformed into any flavour that you wish, in just a few minutes? The dessert that I am suggesting below takes only 5 minutes to be prepared.

All you need is three ingredients: Vanilla Ice-Cream and two different kind of cereals.  I used Honey Balls and Coco Pops.  My first thought was to use Oreo Cookies but soon I realised that the cookies were long gone… 

In a wooden bowl crush the cereals.  You can achieve this result by using a plastic bag and a plaster.

Divide the crushed cereals in different plates.  Now you are ready to proceed with the ice-cream.

     

Take a scoop of Vanilla Ice-Cream and put it in each plate.  With a teaspoon cover the ice-cream with the crushed cereals.  The dessert is almost ready…

Place the ice-cream in a plate.  Your dessert is ready.  A plain vanilla ice-cream can be transformed into a gourmet dessert in just a few minutes.  This is a clever solution when you have unexpected guests, or when your time is limited and you truly wish to impress your audience.  Enjoy…!

Posted in Desserts | 8 Comments

Cauliflower and Potatoes, cooked in Red Wine

This is a casserole dish that my mother cooks often.  I tried cauliflower in several recipes, but I find this one the most delicious of all. 

If you love red wine in food, try this recipe.  Remember not to stir while cooking.

 Below you can find the ingredients and preparation instructions. Enjoy…!

Cauliflower and Potatoes, cooked in red wine
6 Servings
 
2 kg cauliflower, divided into florets
6 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped into quarters
4 large tomatoes peeled and mashed
½ cup of red dry wine (good quality)
1 ½ cup warm water
Salt and Black Pepper
 
For Frying
Vegetable Oil
 
Preparation Method
Heat vegetable oil in a casserole to 180ºC/350ºF, and fry potatoes in batches, until golden brown.  Remove from casserole and drain on kitchen paper (paper towels).
Do the same with cauliflower florets.
Remove vegetable oil from casserole and place in it the cauliflower and potatoes. Do not stir.
Add the mashed tomatoes, water and red wine; season with salt and pepper to taste.
Simmer for about 15-20 minutes.
The dish will be ready when juices are reduced to minimum.
Posted in Various Dishes | 14 Comments

Egg and Lactose Free Orange Cake (with only 7 ingredients)

The first thing I always do is to gather together all ingredients.  For this recipe I used only seven ingredients: Sugar, Flour, Vegetable Fat, Orange Juice, Baking Powder and Orange Essence. 
  
 
Sugar and Vegetable Fat were beaten together until I got a light and fluffy mixture.  This can be done with an electric mixer or by hand.  I have chosen to do it by hand.  It came out fine.
 
 
 
The next step was to add the orange juice and mix the three ingredients a bit, then to add the sifted flour along with the baking powder and cinnamon.  This stage needs patience because all the ingredients have to get mixed together without being over beaten.
 
 
 
The orange essence was added at the end.  The cake mixture will look like this when it will be ready to be baked.
 
 
 
Just about to be poured into the bundt pan. 
 
 
 
For egg and lactose free cakes I usually use bundt pans because, due to their shape, they make it easier for the cake to be baked well.  In such recipes baking is essential to be done in the right way.  Otherwise you will get an uncooked sponge.
 
 
  
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The cake was cooked for about one hour.  Nobody could understand the difference between a classic orange cake and this one.  It can be served with ice cream, melted chocolate on top or simply by adding a bit of icing sugar.  I prefer not to add anything…
Below you can find the recipe in detail.  Good luck!
 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 glasses of fresh orange juice (4 large oranges)
  • 1 glass of caster sugar
  • 1/3 glass of vegetable fat/unsalted margarine or extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 glasses of all-purpose flour sifted
  • 3 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon of cinnamon powder
  • 1 teaspoon orange essence or orange zest
 
 
Preparation Method
  1. Preheat oven to 170ºC (338ºF) fan forced.  Grease 26 bundt pan well.
  2. Beat vegetable fat and caster sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add orange juice and mix.
  4. Stir in sifted flour, baking powder and cinnamon; then add orange zest.
  5. Spread mixture into pan; bake for about 45 minutes to 170ºC (338ºF), then reduce temperature to 150ºC and continue baking for another 10-15 minutes.  Insert a knife to the cake. If the knife comes out clean then your cake is done.
  6. Stand cake in pan 5 minutes; turn onto wire rack to cool.
 
 
Posted in Desserts | 13 Comments

Vegetable, Fruit and Mozzarella Salad

Easy and delicious at the same time.  It was made from green vegetables, tomato, mozzarella cheese, ham, orange, balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, and organic nuts.

Posted in Salads | 8 Comments

Kolokassi (a traditional Cypriot dish)

According to my taste this is a delicious casserole meal.  According to my father’s opinion, this is just something to fill in stomach.  I think its worth trying it…

Here are the ingredients and the method of preparation:
 
 
Ingredients

1. 1kg pork cubes
2. 1kg taro (kolokassi)

3. 5 sticks of celery, chopped
4. 2 large onions, finely chopped
5. 1 cup tomato juice
6. ½ a cup of hot water
7. Salt & pepper to taste
8. Olive oil for frying
9. 1 tsp lemon juice

Preparation Method

To prepare cut the ends of kolokassi and peel the skin.
With a wet towel clean it. Never wash kolokassi with running water.
With a sharp knife, cut across (2 cm thick) halfway then break off. Repeat to the end. Note: if slices are cut all the way across without breaking off, the vegetable will melt while cooking.
Heat the olive oil in a saucepan and brown the meat (8 -10 minutes).
Transfer onto a dish.
Gently fry onion in olive oil until soft then add the kolokassi and celery. Fry all together for 5 – 10 minutes or until they start to change colour.
Add the lemon juice.
Pour tomato juice and hot water into the saucepan.
Add the pork cubes and season well. Ensure the food is covered in liquid (if not add some more hot water). Cover and simmer for 1-1 ½ hours until the liquid is reduced, and the meat and kolokassi becomes tender. Serve hot. 

You can serve kolokassi with radishes and Greek salad.
You can also cook kolokassi with koupepia.
My grandmother, Eftychia, always cooked these two dishes together, and believe me, it was delicious!!!!

“This recipe goes to Antonella, of Il Lupo Selvatico, who will be featuring it in Mediterranea, representing Cyprus.”

Posted in Various Dishes | Tagged , , , , , | 11 Comments