gingered pear

a pear in love with food

Month: October, 2011

nutella cookies

Gluten free treats! I bet you can’t just eat one.

Nutella Cookies

makes about 6 dozen
adapted from tampa bay times

1/2 cup Nutella (or other chocolate hazelnut spread)
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 heaping tablespoon natural cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix thoroughly (about 2 minutes with a hand mixer). Scoop out dough with a melon baller or drop by teaspoonfuls onto baking sheet.  Mash with fork to make criss-cross patterns. Bake 10-12 minutes (do not overbake). Cool slightly, then transfer to a wire rack.

When completely cool, store in a sealed container. The dough can be prepared a few days ahead and stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator.  Add 1/2 cup flour if you want a more cakelike, puffy cookie.



miso glazed eggplant

Miso Glazed Eggplant
adapted from fatfreevegan
serves 2

1 tablespoons mirin
1 tablespoons sake
2 tablespoons shiro miso
1 tablespoons sugar
2 Japanese eggplants, cut in half lengthwise
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
sliced green onions, for garnish

Best with Japanese eggplant but I used small rounder eggplants.

Place the mirin and sake in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer for about 2 minutes. Add the miso and stir until smooth. Stir in the sugar, reduce the heat to very low stirring occasionally.

Brush the cut sides of the eggplants with the sesame oil. Put the eggplants cut-side down on a baking sheet and place under the broiler of your oven for about 3 minutes, checking often to make sure that they do not burn. Turn them over, and cook for another 3 minutes or until the tops are a light to medium brown. Do not burn! (If your eggplant still isn’t tender all the way through, turn the broil function to bake at 375˚ for a few more minutes.) When the eggplants are tender, top each one with the miso sauce and put them back under the broiler until the sauce bubbles up, for about a minute. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and green onions. Enjoy hot!

roasted cauliflower with indian spices

Easy weeknight meal, just add some basamti or brown rice! From seriouseats.

Adjust the spiciness by adding or omitting serrano peppers. Smaller peppers tend to be spicer.

pickled carrots and daikon

I really like the sweet pickles carrots and daikon in the bánh mì – vietnamese sandwiches and hainanese chicken.  It’s sweet and tangy at the same time unlike the salty pickles you get at the supermarket.

I got some fresh colorful baby carrots and daikon from the farmer’s market on the weekend. The brine is a mixture rice wine vinegar, water, sugar and salt. Wait about a week for it to do it’s magic and enjoy!

Update: It turns out that I bought rice vinegar that had sugar and salt already. I thought it was a tad sweet from the first pickling. I have now bought pure rice vinegar. We’ll see when it’s ready to eat!

lamb chops with summer salad

This is before I started posting on the blog so I don’t have any pictures but this simple pre-marinated recipe is delicious. The lamb is juicy and the summer salad is a perfect touch to balance the meatier lamb, with a touch of tzaziki sauce for flavor. Enjoy with a glass of red!

Lamb Chops with Summer Salad
serves 4
adapted from Food Network

Lamb Marinade
** pre-marinated from the day before and steep in the fridge**
3 medium cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
1/3 cup chopped parsley (about 1/2 bunch)
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 racks of lamb, each cut into 6 chops
1 lemon, squeezed for juice
coarse sea salt
Tzaziki (as a side)

Summer Salad
1 large zucchini, cut in half and then lengthwise into 1/4 inch strips
1 bunch asparagus, stringy ends peeled
1/2 red onion, sliced very thinly and soaked in cold water
olive oil

For the lamb:
Combine garlic, rosemary, parsley, Dijon mustard, olive oil and pepper together in a medium mixing bowl and smear on chops. Smother sauce all over the lamb chop and let marinate for at least on hour, or marinate overnight.

Grill on high heat, 2-3 minutes on each side, including fat side. Squeeze lemon juice over chops while cooking. Remove from heat and let rest for 5 minutes.

For the salad:
Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Cut asparagus into about half or thirds (about the same lengths as the zucchini). Add asparagus to boiling water; cook until spears are crisp, about a minute. Add zucchini and cook for only one minute. Strain asparagus and zucchini; plunge immediately into ice water or rinse under cold running water.

Drain and transfer to medium mixing bowl. Add the drained sliced red onion, olive oil and salt to taste. Throw it back in the fridge if the lamb is not done yet.

mushroom ricotta phyllo

Easy and relatively quick to make, and tastes better than expected. It even tastes good when cold! from all you need is cheese

gingered pear phyllo

Nice light dessert of caramelized pears, light whip wrapped in fluffy phyllo from CHOW. The only thing is that it’s a dessert that’s only good when eaten right away.  I must have ate at least 3. I couldn’t let it go to waste!

I would also turn the temperature down to cook the phyllo – it burned the corners much too quickly, although delicious not giving a well rounded golden brown color.

lamb meatballs


These juicy little meatballs from serious eat are perfect in a pita or as little snacks with tzatziki sauce. The mint in the meatballs are a perfect touch to the lamb and bacon.

zucchini fritters

Note that you have to wait 30 minutes to drain the water from the zucchini once it’s shredded. The dill is a good touch to bring out the flavors of the zucchini in these little fritter from serious eats. I like the this is also pretty simple to make (just like the lamb meatballs) but just not as flavourful.

farmer’s market

There’s just couple more weeks left of the farmer’s market left in Vancouver, until the Winter one which moves to indoor. On Sunday we hit up the one in Kitsilano.