Je Goûterai - I will taste

Photography student who loves to cook and bake! My New year's resolution, to try my hand at cooking at least 52 new recipes!

28.6.12 - 52 recipes done!

Next target, 104 recipes to reach by the end of the year!
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Posts tagged "cream cheese"

11.7.13 Breakfast

Wholemeal toast topped with garlic and herb cream cheese, spinach, sliced tomato and poached eggs. 

Valentine’s day Bake sale!

My friend’s were holding a bake sale yesterday at uni to raise some money for charities. One of the things on their stall was “Guess the weight of the cake” and guess who got it right? Aww yis. Me that’s who.

If it’s wrong to have hot chocolate so early, I don’t want to be right. It’s snowing outside, uni is cancelled and my little feet are freezing. Wanted a nice cosy warm breakfast today so opted for my favourite, poached eggs :) I had them on an English muffin with garlic and herb cream cheese.
And a hot chocolate….. yes.

No 54: Heston’s Cheese Sauce – 14.7.12

I’ve been wanting to try this since watching Heston’s new ‘Heston at Home’ series and the other day there were repeats of the series on tv which sparked my interest for the recipe again! I had some white wine left over so went to the shops to buy a nice hard cheese and got straight on with it! I took the cheese recipe from Heston’s Macaroni Cheese recipe on the channel 4 website:

Serve 4

300ml Dry White Wine
300ml brown chicken stock (infused for 20mins with the rind of the hard cheese) keep warm
80g Spenwood Cheese ( I used Parmigiano Reggiano), finely grated, I used a Microplane grater!
10 g Corn Flour
80g Soft Cream Cheese
Pinch of Black Pepper

  • Reduce the wine over a high heat till 30ml is left, add the warm stock to the wine and mix.

  • Mix the grated cheese with the cornflour to coat it all and then add to the pan. Stir until the cheese has been incorporated into the sauce and leave for a few moments to thicken. Finish it off by stirring in the cream cheese and the black pepper

  • Then use it for any recipe you like! I used it for a Sweet Potato Pasta Bake.

And that’s it! It was a lot simpler than I thought it was going to be! The sauce was not overly cheesy so not too rich and the flavours from the wine were so … deep and was creamy and delicious! I really really liked this so will defiantly make it again. It seems to be a bit healthier than a regular cheese sauce! Only 20g of cheese per portion, no butter, no milk and no flour!

I think one of the best things about cooking is having your own herbs growing on the window sill! I’ve had a Basil plant before which I usedallthe time but it died when I went away to Bristol for a week! Now I have a chive plant! And it is wonderful! I try to use it whenever I can, just snipping the chives into my food. One of my favourite ways to use chives is with plain cream cheese.

I had a poached egg on toast this morning and when I spread my toast with the cream cheese, I snipped a few chives into it and it made such a world of difference! Having fresh growing herbs in your kitchen/garden is such a good idea because they taste so fresh when you use them! You know where they’ve come from and taste so much better than dried versions. (However some things do work better when dried)

But I don’t think I needed to add goat’s cheese to my lunch today…..

I decided to have something quick today so wanted to have couscous and cauliflower! I haven’t had cauliflower in aggggess and it’s in season at the moment! I know cauliflower is used a lot in curries and works well with couscous so I steamed it and tried to coat it in a sort of curry ish sauce. When I went to my cupboards I realised I had no curry spices. I ended up mixing together some ‘Sundried Tomato and Basil Cream Cheese’ with a little Paprika and mixed this with the hot cauliflower so it coated it all.Probably would have tasted ten times better with actual sundried tomatoes but whatever! I then crumbled goats cheese on top and seasoned.

It was really quite tasty but I actually regretted putting the goats cheese on. It over powered everything!! >.<

No. 21: Red Velvet Cupcakes – 18.2.12

My friend the other day was going to make Red Velvet Cupcakes so I went round hers to help her out. I’ve never made them before and she had found a recipe on the internet taken from The Hummingbird Bakery Cook Book which I actually have hiding away in a loft at my parents house! I’ve made stuff from it before so I know it is a really good book!! First time I have tried Red Velvet Cupcakes and Cream Cheese Frosting. Here is the website we used if you don’t have this book!

Makes 12 cupcakes

For the cupcakes
60g unsalted butter, at room temp!
caster sugar
cocoa powder
red food colouring (Be careful as they vary in strength)
½ tsp
vanilla extract
plain flour
½tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 and ½tsp white wine vinegar

For the frosting
300g icing sugar, sifted
50g unsalted butter, at room temp
125g cream cheese, cold

Preheat the oven to 170oC

  • Mix the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy then slowly add the egg and beat until well incorporated. This recipe said to use a electric mixer or an electric hand held mixer. My friend have neither which I assume neither do most so we just did it with a wooden spoon and our womanly strength!

  • In a separate bowl, mix together the cocoa powder, food colouring and vanilla to make a thick paste. Add this to the butter mixture and mix until thoroughly combined to make sure the colour has spread evenly.

  • Pour in half of the buttermilk and beat well until mixed and beat in half of the flour. Repeat this until all of the buttermilk and flour is combined and beat until the mixture is smooth and even! Add the salt, bicarb of soda and vinegar and beat again to get it all well mixed and carry on beating for a few more minutes.

  • Spoon the mixture into 12 cupcake cases until 2/3’s full and bake for 20-25minutes. When done leave to cool slightly in the tray and then transfer to a cooling rack.

  • For the Frosting! Beat together the icing sugar and butter until well mixed. Then add all of the cream cheese and continue to beat for around 5 minutes until it is light and fluffy! Top the cupcakes with this when cooled.

These were very strange cakes!! I think it might have been the addition of white wine vinegar which gave them this subtle strange flavour but they were nice! Ours turned out a little more… Dark Brown than red but whatever! The cream cheese frosting was so creamy! I kept just diving my finger into the bowl and scooping up large chunks of frosting. It was so yummy!

No. 16: Sweet Onions with Lentil stew- 5.2.12

This week is my low fat week and in a lot of cookery books and such there is a lot of talk about how lentils and pulses are good, rich and healthy alternatives to more wheat based and carb food such as pasta and potatoes. I bought a pack of Puy Lentils and searched the internet for a recipe! I found this one by Nigel Slater on the BBC GoodFood website and it looked so good! I was simply hoping I would actually LIKE lentils as I’ve never had them before!!

Serves 4

a good handful of chopped, unsmoked bacon or Pancetta (you can easily not use this if you want to make this meal vegetarian)
4 medium onions
3 small carrots
½ tsp mild paprika
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ nutmeg, for grating
300g puy lentils
500ml stock (which ever flavour you want)
of water
a handful of parsley
a knob of butter or 1-2 tsps of veg/olive/sun flower oil
100g crème fraiche

  • Cook the bacon/Pancetta in a deep pan (I just used a saucepan, I think that’s what he meant!) over a moderate heat so they release their fat. This is then used to cook the other ingredients! And if you’re not using bacon, just use a drizzle of oil to cook your veg :)

  • Roughly chop 2 onions, cut the carrots into chuck and add them to the pan. Cover them and let it steam for a few minutes . Add the paprika, cinnamon and grate the ½ of nutmeg into the dish

  • Add the lentils, stock and water, give it a good stir and cover. Leave for about 30 minutes or until the lentils have softened!

  • Whilst the lentils are cooking, slices the remaining 2 onions and cook them very slowly in the butter. (I would say on a low to medium heat for about 15-30 minutes depending on how you’ve cut them! ) They should turn golden brown and finish this off with a little grate of nutmeg.

  • When the lentils are done, add the chopped parsley and serve with a dollop of the crème fraiche and pile the caramelised onions on top!

This is defiantly one dish which is good to stop you from snacking! The lentils are so filling and kept me full for hours! I didn’t use the bacon as I had non and this was a bit of a spontaneous try and I did not use Carrots as I can’t digest them properly!
I over cooked the lentils a little bit so it was a lot thicker than it should be but it was so good! I used shallots to top my lentils which is a really nice change as they are a little sweeter than regular onions I find but I suppose you can use any kind of onion as long as you can caramelise it! I also used cream cheese instead of crème fraiche, again because I had no crème fraiche but it tasted amazing! This dish defiantly needs a creamy substance to go with it because just the texture of lentils after eating them for a while I think can be quite dry. There were rich, deep flavours from the lentils, a creamy, silkiness from the cream cheese and this wonderful sweetness from the onions. Defiantly having this again!