9 Oct 2013

Pinenut, Parmesan and Fennel Seed Wafers

My second job is in a library. While I'm there I almost always come across a new and interesting food book - or an old favourite that I haven't seen in a while. This week my find was "Ärabesque - Modern Middle Eastern Food" by Greg and Lucy Malouf. I look forward to really exploring it, but so far have only flicked through it and was instantly drawn to Pine Nut Wafers. I tried them this evening. They were straightforward to make, and just as tasty and luscious as I'd hoped. They'd be great with pre-dinner drinks. 
I love the colour of fennel seeds!
Pine Nut Wafers
100g Pinenuts, roughly chopped
100g parmesan cheese, grated
1 tspn fennel seeds, roasted and lightly crushed

Pre-heat oven to 180C
In a mixing bowl combine all ingredients well. 
Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Carefully spoon rounds of the mixture onto the tray. I used egg-rings as a mould, but removed them before baking.)
before baking
after baking
Bake for 8-10 minutes
Remove from oven and allow them to cool completely on the tray.
Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Makes 10-12 wafers.


6 Oct 2013

Candied Pecans with Rosemary and Spice

Hi, I'm Back!

I can''t believe it's been 9 months!!

It's been a busy year and there have been other things to focus on - like losing 18kg - but I'm back now and filled with enthusiasm!

I imagine my food has changed a little over the time I've been away. I'm certainly much more wary of sugar and fructose specifically, I've delved into the world of calorie counting for the first time ever though I'm backing away now,  I am dabbling in intermittent fasting for health benefits. I'm still almost vegetarian (Monday to Friday).   I'm sure more will come out about these things in coming posts. Also, just yesterday we bought a new fancy oven and I imagine that will change things!

Today I wanted to make something fairly simple so I could would have time get back into the swing of writing, photos and editing, find all the cables etc and still produce a post. But it still had to be delicious. And it HAD to use the oven :)

I had a big bag of pecans in the cupboard. Two years ago on a visit to California we had a snack mix that was candied pecans with rosemary and dried cranberries. The memory of how good that match was has stayed with me. Pecans and cranberries aren't used widely in Australia so I've never seen anything similar here. So this afternoon I found some recipes and modified them a little to come up with this fructose-free version.

2 1/2 cups (275g) pecans, halved
1/4 cup (80g) rice malt syrup (you could use honey)
1 tspn salt 
1 tspn smoky paprika
1/2 tspn ground allspice
2 tspn chopped fresh rosemary 

  • Preheat Oven to 180C (350)F.
  • Line a baking sheet with baking paper.
  • after baking
    before baking
  • In a bowl toss all ingredients together, then spread in a single layer on the prepared tray.
  • Bake the pecans for about 10 minutes until golden brown and fragrant.
  • Cool to crisp, before breaking up and putting in an airtight jar. 

Recipes suggest this will last a few days in the cupboard and a week or so in the fridge - I think they'll be long gone before we get to test that . 
I know it would taste great with dried cranberries too. (but I steer away from dried fruit nowadays)