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Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Walnut brownies

Walnut Brownies
Ingredients for approx. 25 brownies:

200g butter
2 bars of J.D Gross dark 70% chocolate
3 eggs
180g icing sugar
1 pinch of salt
80g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Icing sugar for dusting
150g walnuts


Dice the butter, finely chop 200g of chocolate and melt together in a bowl over a pan of hot water. Whisk the eggs, icing sugar and salt until thick and creamy. Let the chocolate mass cool down and add to the other ingredients. Chop the walnuts and the rest of the chocolate coarsely, mix with flour and baking powder and add to the mix. Pour the mix into a greased baking tin (approx. 18 x 25cm) and bake it in a pre-heated oven at 180°C for approx. 30mins, until the surface is hard but the inside is still soft. To avoid the surface becoming too dark use some kitchen foil to cover it. Let it cool down in the tin, turn it out onto a flat surface and cut into cubes. Dust icing sugar over the brownies.

Chocolate & Almond Puding

Chocolate & Almond Pudding
Ingredients (Serves 4-6):

100g dark chocolate
100g butter
2 eggs (separated)
125g caster sugar
1 pinch salt
Splash of vanilla essence
50g ground almonds
40g flour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
4-6 almond truffles
4 tablespoons of dessert cream


Chop the dark chocolate into chunks, place in a shallow ovenproof dish along with the butter and place into a pre-heated oven at 110°C/80°C fan-assisted / gas mark 1/4 until the chocolate has completely melted. Take it out of the oven and leave to cool slightly.

Separate the eggs, mix the yolks with caster sugar, salt and vanilla essence and blend until creamy. Add the slightly cooled down chocolate mix.

Mix ground almonds with the flour and the cocoa powder and add to the chocolate mix. Beat the egg whites until stiff and fold into the dough.

Fill 4-6 greased small Ramekins (approx. 150-250ml) half full with dough. Put a truffle in the centre of each Ramekin and cover them with the rest of the dough. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180°C/160°C fan assisted/ Gas mark 4 for 20-25 minutes.

Serve hot or cold with a dollop of cream.

Orange Granita with Fruit

Orange Granita with Fruit
Ingredients (Serves 4):

4 ripe and juicy oranges
450g (1lb) of fruit such as strawberries
Icing sugar (optional)


Cut the oranges in half and squeeze out all the juice. Taste for sweetness. If the oranges are really ripe, you shouldn’t need to add any sugar, but if the juice tastes sharp, you can mix in some icing sugar, stirring until dissolved. Pour into a plastic tub and place this in your freezer.

Remove after half an hour and stir well with a fork to break up the ice crystals. Place back in the freezer for half an hour, then remove once more and give it a stir. Keep repeating this process for a total of four hours. It may seem a bit laborious, but should break the mixture down into a nice, crunchy sorbet texture.
If you miss one of the stages don’t worry, all is not lost! Remove the granita from the freezer, let it partially thaw and give it a blitz in the food processor. Put it back in the freezer and carry on as before. When finished, the granita will keep for up to three weeks in the freezer. For a posh dinner party look, serve in glasses or glass dishes. Cut the strawberries or other fruit in half lengthways and place in the glass. Pile the granita on top.

Panna Cotta with Basil Apricots

Panna Cotta with Basil Apricots
Ingredients (Serves 4):

1 unwaxed lemon
500ml double cream
50g sugar
3 leaves of white gelatine
½ tin of apricots
3-4 basil leaves


Rinse the lemon with hot water, grate zest and squeeze out the juice. Bring cream, sugar and lemon zest to a boil then simmer for 10-15 minutes. Stir frequently. Remove the cream from the heat to cool off slightly. Prepare gelatine as recommended on the package then stir into the lukewarm cream.

Pour mixture into 4 small cups or ramekins using a sieve to ensure smoothness. Put them into the refrigerator for 4 hours allowing the cream to set and become firm. Drain the apricots, cut into quarters and place in a mixing bowl. Cut the basil leaves into thin strips, mix with apricots and add lemon juice to taste. Run a knife around the edges of the cups or ramekins and turn the Panna Cotta onto a plate. Decorate with the apricots and serve.

Mango & Orange Smoothie

Mango & Orange Smoothie

1 ripe mango
2 small bananas, peeled and chopped
300ml fresh orange juice
6-8 ice cubes


Mangoes can seem a bit daunting, but they’re actually quite simple to prepare. Place the mango on a chopping board and cut a thin slice off the top and bottom. This allows the mango to sit up on the board. Use a sharp knife (or a peeler if the mango is not too ripe) and carefully peel away the skin. Once it’s skinless, cut down vertically on either side of the stone, which runs lengthways, and cut away the remaining mango from the stone.
Chop up into pieces and place in a blender with the bananas and the fresh orange juice. Blend until smooth and drink immediately.

Tropical Smoothie

Tropical Smoothie
Ingredients (Serves 2):

¼ pineapple
1 mango
2 oranges
1 banana


Prepare the pineapple and mango and place in a blender. Squeeze the oranges and add the juice to the blender with the banana. Blitz until smooth. Serve immediately and think of the sun!

Strawberry & Kiwi Smoothie

Strawberry & Kiwi Smoothie

200g ripe strawberries, hulled and chopped
1 kiwi, peeled and chopped
125g plain yoghurt
5-6 ice cubes


Place all the ingredients into a blender. Blend until smooth, drink immediately.

Moroccan Orange Salad with Sweet Zesty Cream

Moroccan Orange Salad with Sweet Zesty Cream
Ingredients (Serves 4):

4 large oranges
3g icing sugar
5ml orange blossom
1g cinnamon
5ml lemoncello
5ml brandy
50ml double cream
Zest of 1 lemon, 1 lime and 1 orange
1 tablespoon of rosewater (optional)


For the orange salad, peel and slice the oranges and arrange on a plate. Drizzle with the orange blossom and lemoncello, and then dust with 2g icing sugar and cinnamon.

To make the zesty cream, whip the double cream until just peaking, then add the brandy, the remaining 1g of icing sugar and the fruit zest, and mix well. Spoon a portion onto each serving of orange salad. Drizzle with some rosewater if desired.


He said "The Doctor wants his child to become a doctor and
the Engineer wants his child to become an engineer.
The Businessman wants his ward to become a CEO.
BUT a teacher also wants his child to become one of them, as well!!!!

Nobody wants to become a teacher BY CHOICE" .Very sad but that's the truth!!!

The dinner guests were seated round the table discussing life. One man, a CEO, decided to explain the problem with education.

He argued, "What's a kid going to learn from someone who's decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?"
To stress his point he said to another guest: "You're a teacher, Bonnie. Be honest. What do you make?"

Teacher Bonnie, who had a reputation for honesty and frankness replied,"You want to know what I make?
(She paused for a second, then began.)

"Well, I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.

I make a C+ feel like the Congressional Medal of Honor winner.

I make kids sit through 40 minutes of class time when their parents can't make them sit for 5 min. without an I- Pod, Game Cube or movie rental.

So you want to know what I make?
(She paused again and looked at each and every person at the table):

I make kids wonder.
I make them question.
I make them apologize and mean it.
I make them have respect and take responsibility for their actions.
I teach them how to write and then I make them write.
Keyboarding isn't everything.

I make them read, read, read.
I make them show all their work in math.
They use their God given brain, not the man-made calculator.
I make my students from other countries learn everything they need to know about English while preserving their unique cultural identity.
I make my classroom a place where all my students feel safe.

Finally, I make them understand that if they use the gifts they
were given, work hard, and follow their hearts, they can succeed in life.( Bonnie paused one last time and then continued.)
Then, when people try to judge me by what I make, with me knowing money isn't everything, I can hold my head up high and pay no attention because they are ignorant. You want to know what I make?


Mr CEO's jaw dropped. Suddenly he went silent.

THIS IS WORTH SENDING TO EVERY PERSON YOU KNOW. Send to all school teachers, personal mentors, mothers, fathers, older brothers, and sisters, and coach and spiritual leaders. For they are all in one important sense TEACHERS...people whose job is to make better human beings out of mere homo sapiens.

Do remember the job of teaching our young, and the not so young, about the values and qualities, and imparting to them the knowledge to help make them well-informed, defines our very humanity which resides at the very core of Human Civilization.
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