Friday, March 28, 2014

Sweet potatoes bread

A sweet potato breakfast...

Today I offer you a sweet potatoes bread recipe. I was inspired by English muffins to make this recipe. What I like here, is to use sweet potatoes in a different way from what I have seen in my childhood. 
Indeed in Brazzaville (Congo, Africa) where I grew up, the sweet potato is eaten boiled or fried. 
In Central Africa there is another variety of sweet potatoes which have a floury white flesh and not the orange color as what is sold in the West. And it is not cooked as cake or bread.

Sweet potato can be adapted to many dishes such as shepherd's pie, it can be served as mashed to accompany meat or fish and also as rösti as I have seen in Citron & Myrtille blog (Lemon & Blueberry). While in The Antilles (Haiti, Martinique, Guadeloupe) they make delicious sweet potatoes cakes.

So to achieve these soft rolls, here's what you'll need:

Ingredients  (for about 15 buns):

  • 200 grams cooked and peeled sweet potato
  • 420-430 grams of wheat flour
  • 7g/ 1tsp of dried yeast
  • 30 grams unsalted butter melted
  • 1 egg
  • 8 cl or ½ cup of lukewarm milk
  • 1 tablespoon liquid honey
  • 1 pinch of salt


Dissolve the yeast in lukewarm milk, put in a dry and warm place until foam appears on the surface.

Peel sweet potato, do put the flesh into medium bowl and mash.

Melt the butter.

In a bowl pour the flour and add a pinch of salt.

In the food processor pour the sweet potatoe mashed,the honey,the egg, and the melted butter, blend well.

Add the flour and  start kneading. 

Then add the yeast and blend.

Knead the dough for about 8 to 10 minutes until all the elements are well mixed.

If the dough is too soft gradually add about 10 grams of flour. 

The dough should be soft and smooth.

Form a smooth ball and lightly oil the surface of the dough. Put in an oiled bowl and keep the dough in a warm and dry place for 1 hour.

The dough has doubled in volume, lightly dust your hands with flour and knead the dough for about 5 minutes. 
Sweet potato contains a lot of water it tends to moisten the dough. Add a little flour if needed but not much. The dough should be smooth and soft.

Rub your rolling pin with flour and roll out the dough 2 cm thick on a floured surface. 

Take circles of dough with a cookie cutter about 5 cm in diameter. For larger buns choose a bigger diameter.

Place the circles of dough on parchment paper and let rest again for 30 minutes in a warm and dry place.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and cook the buns, turning occasionally so they will cook on all sides. 

You can eat those breads with butter and jam or with savory dishes.
I've eaten mine with the grapefruit jam I made and with some salted butter.

I hope you will enjoy those buns.
Thank you for your reading and your comments.
I'll be happy to hear from you.


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Cookie Cake Tatin and first Food Battle

This is my first participation in the Food Battle in France since the opening of the blog on February 8 .
This time the theme chosen by the site author  is " The cookie dough ." She is also the sponsor of this 18th edition.

For those who do not know about this game, this is Carole from blog that launched the first Food Battle several months ago. Since then, the tradition continues for our pleasure,participants or not.

Here is the list of participants:

Les cookines – Casseroles et clavier – Chocoframboises – Once upon a cook – Bavardages gourmands – Un flo de bonnes choses – De la peau au noyau – Trognon de pomme – Le blog de pouce – Pourquoi pas Isa – Mais pourquoi est ce que je vous raconte ça – Encore une lichette – La tasse fumante – Chez Ale – Radis rose – By ACB 4 you – Epices et moi – Marine en cuisine– Pause nature - La Godiche – Vanille et chocolats – Zéro miettes Mes instants de gourmandise – Tizi cooks – Les yeux plus gros que le ventre – Ma petite cuisine au quotidien – Framboises et bergamote – La ligne gourmande – Stella cuisine – Cuisine et cigares – Dans un petit coin de ma cuisine – Cook with love – Jujube en cuisine – La cuisine d’Anna et Olivia – Happy food –Mes petites fiches cuisine – La médecine passe par la cuisine – Des recettes à gogo – J’ai toujours aimé le jaune moutarde –Cooksmopolitan – Le bistrot de Jenna – Chic, chic, choc…olat – Piment oiseau – Les haricots diaboliques – La galerie du régal –La petite cuisine – J’apporte le dessert – Par faim d’arômes – J’amène le dessert – Safran gourmand – Pincée de fantaisie –Chut je pâtisse – Voyages des papilles – Homemade Maurylise – La vie Lilloise – Mon petit coin de cuisine – Manouchoux –Plaisir et équilibre – Un amour de recettes – Sweet mood in Paris – Cooking n’ co – Kalou & Cook – Les petites miettes d’enfance – Delicious Rdv – Invitation au fait maison – Les recettes de dessert d’Anaïs – L’ornithorynque chafouin - Dollyjessy -Pourquoi je grossis – VG Zone – Click, cook and taste – 13 desserts, chacun – Beauty and cook – Cook’n blog – Handmade by Anna – The happy cooking friends – Babeth’s cuisine – Citron myrtille 

I also take this opportunity to thank everyone, family, acquaintances , readers, friends, and food bloggers  for your reading, for the welcome you have given me and your kindness. It is a world that I did not know two months ago and I already feel part of it.

For this Battle, I made a Tarte Tatin using the cookie dough instead of puff pastry.

We owe the Tarte Tatin recipe to the Tatin sisters who ran a restaurant in Sologne (France 19th century). Their tart burnt so the sisters have kept the caramelized apples and have decided to coat  them with a puff pastry and then baked again.
The Tarte Tatin was born! It is a French classic.

I used the Sally cookie cake recipe from sallysbakingaddiction and I applied the classic recipe of caramelized apples ( sugar, water, butter).

 So here is the Cookie Cake Tatin or in French the Biscuit Tatin.


You will need about 1h30 for this cake.
It is rather easy to achieve. You just have to carefully check the cooking time.

 Here's what you need:

Ingredients ( for 6/ 7 people) :

For the caramelized apples :

  • Five big apples 
  • 120 gr of caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • Small drops of lemon juice ( not too much)
  • 50g butter

For the cookie dough :

  • 260 gr all purpose flour
  • 15 gr/2 tps of potato starch or cornstarch
  • 170 gr soft butter
  • 1 whole egg and 1 egg yolk
  • 130 gr/ 1 cup brown sugar
  • 7 grams/1tsp of baking powder
  • 2 drops of vanilla extract
  • Nuts and /or chopped almonds
  • Chocolate chip cookies
  • 1 pinch of salt


Start with the caramel.

In a saucepan over medium heat, add the sugar, water and lemon. Bring to a boil and cook to obtain a light caramel
Add the butter after about 7 minutes.
Stir constantly. You will need about 10 minutes to get a caramel.

Wash the apples, peel and cut into quarter and place them rounded side  in a baking mould  lined with with parchment paper. Pour in the caramel.
Cover the baking pan with foil and bake first for 30 minutes at TH 6 or 350 Farenheit  and finish the next 15 minutes uncovered at TH 7 or 400 Farenheit.
The apples should turn brown.

Remove the apples from the oven and cover them*.
Do not turn off the oven, it will be preheated for cookies.

Prepare the cookie dough .

In a bowl, sift together the flour , cornstarch or potatoe starch , the baking powder and the salt.

In another bowl or in the food processor bowl , place the softened butter and sugar , whisk to dissolve the sugar (about 5 min).
Add the whole egg , mix well, then the egg yolk and vanilla extract .
Mix well after each addition.

Pour the flour gradually into the butter / sugar preparation and mix.

Chop the hazelnuts and almonds , add them to the dough and add the chocolate chips.

You can either lay the dough into a buttered and floured 26 cm springform pan or use small molds of your choice.
Whatever your choice the mold must  be half filled. The paste should be spread on about 2 cm thick. 

Bake your cookie cake for 15 minutes at 6 TH or 350 Farenheit.
The cakes cook very quickly. Their heart is soft and the edge is crispy .
Wait  for  about 5 minutes and add  the caramelized apples over the top of the cakes.
Serve cold or lukewarm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or yogurt . 


*I maintain the mold of caramelized apples over a pan of warm water so that the caramel don't harden.
If the caramel is too hard , put it in a pan with a little water and reduce the liquid while stirring.

This cake is delicious. My colleagues enjoyed it.
I hope you will like it too. Thank you for reading.


Monday, March 24, 2014

Lentils Dhal: Delicious India

I love Indian food for its flavors and spices. 
It is a cuisine of great diversity and richness. While in Northern India greatly influenced by Mughal culture, flatbreads accompany meals, The Southern kitchen is characterized by a high consumption of rice and it is also known especially for being spicier.

The contribution of Indian cuisine in the world is huge. Due to great migrations, it has influenced the five continents. There are adaptations in Africa (South Africa, Tanzania, Kenya ...), in the Indian Ocean, and also in Europe (especially England) and North America.

Indian kitchen sounds complicated but you can easily cook it at home. Everyone can create its own curry respecting the most important ingredients which are mashed garlic  mashed ginger, turmeric , cardamom and curry powder .
Then everything is a matter of taste for adding other spices, cinnamon, cloves, pepper etc.

Lentil Dhal is a curry that I particularly appreciate.
In India, the word Dhal is used to name all legumes (lentils, chickpeas etc). And there are lots of sorts of legumes because Indians are huge consumers.
I've chosen to make a lentil dhal but you can make the following recipe with lentils of your choice or chickpeas.

For further information about vegetarian Indian food, I invite you to visit the blog of Panjak In this blog the vegetarian recipes are so delicious.

Ingredients (for 3/ 4 people):

  • 250 gr coral lentils
  • 150g carrots
  • 8 cl tomato pulp or 1 small tomato
  • 60 gr Paneer ( Indian cheese ) or firm tofu (optional)
  • 1/2 liter of vegetable broth
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 small piece of fresh ginger (4/5 cm)
  • a half tsp of garam masala (Indian curry)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 gr of ginger powder (optional)
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon parsley
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • Salt to your taste

Preparation :

2-3 hours before you start, wash and soak the lentils.

Wash and cut the carrots into slices. Boil them in a small saucepan. They should be cooked but remain firm. Set them aside.

Cut and chop the onion into cubes.

Peel and de germed garlic, grate it to get a smooth puree

Peel the ginger and grate it too. You must have a fine puree.

Discard the lentils soaking water. In a saucepan over medium heat, cook the lentils for about 20 minutes with half the broth and 1 bay leaf.

Check the lentils; they should easily be crushed by the fingers.

Take 3 tablespoons of lentils and mix them with the small tomato or the tomato pulp.
Set aside.

In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the oil.

Brown the onion, garlic and ginger puree. Stir well. Do not let them burn.

Add the carrots, lentils, the lentil puree and the spices. Mix well.

Pour a part of the remaining stock and add another leaf.

Cook for about 10 minutes. The mixture should be creamy and smooth.

Salt the Dhal and sprinkle with chopped parsley.

If you want to add paneer or firm tofu, cut into cubes and fry them until brown in a little oil.
Add at the end of the preparation.

I've served this dish with a naan bread buttermilk.
It can also be eaten with rice.


You can make your own paneer; for this, heat a liter of milk over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of white vinegar, a pinch of salt and stir. The milk is going to curdle.
Filter through a muslin to get the curd. Squeeze hard to extract all the water.
Put the muslin in a colander and place a weight on top. Place a container underneath to collect the liquid and store in the fridge.
To use your panee, cut the cheese into cubes.

Thank you for your reading. Feel free to let a comment.
I hope you will enjoy this journey in India.


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Chicken salad with avocado and grapefruit and annoyances...

They delight us or they frustrate us, some things happen in our lives and lead us to deal with it. 
Though I think that in any difficult events, we eventually can find positive things, the fact remains that nobody likes suffering from what he did not expect.
 And I don’t escape to that fact. In my case I don’t like surprises. It's not because I like controlling things but above all because I don’t like being disappointed. 
But that's life isn’t it? And things are not always in our favor.

When I started my job, five years ago, I had the opportunity to work with a manager, a great guy, a man of many talents. 
I arrived in a difficult situation; I had to manage 7 people who has stayed without any management for over a year. I was not welcomed to open arms.
My manager supported me and helped me, giving me the right advice.
It took almost two years to get things back to normal and that we could see the results of the objectives we have set ourselves.

 After this time, I really enjoyed going to work every morning and especially to bring ideas to the company. Thanks to my boss, I became better at work. 

Last Friday he called me into his office, I joked as I do for years working with him:

- Are you going to dismiss me? 
He didn’t answer me as he usually does knowing that I was kidding. 

- Sit down please I need to talk to you. 

And he told me that he had submitted his resignation and soon would leave the company . He's going to create his own company. For sure I 'am happy for him. 
But for me now it is the beginning of doubts and questions.
How things will go after him? We used to working together with respect.
I know when I can talk to him and when I don’t have to. 

Of course it was not easy every day but at least we knew each other and we worked in the same direction. I was worried and so upset last week end.

I reassure myself by thinking that he was there for me at the right time, when I joined the company  5 years ago. He taught me a lot and I must be ready today. Though we made mistakes in some choices or decisions, he showed me that we can lead a business with humanity.

In those moments of doubts I like taking refuge inside my kitchen.  No matter what I 'am going to cook, a simple or an elaborate food.
I like thinking about the recipe I 'am going to cook, selecting the ingredients and then cutting, chopping, mixing and kneading.

Above all, my pleasure is in sharing with friends and family.
I can be very critical with myself and make several attempts to get the result I want.
Cooking, relaxes me, teaches me patience and also probably indulgence.

It is with this thought that I made this «salad of sun," this is how I call it because it is one of my summer classics. 
Of course I do other salads, but I love this one.

Here is what you need for the salad of sun: ( serve 2 )


For the salad:

  • Leftover roast chicken or 2 chicken cutlets
  • 1 green salad (lettuce, Batavia, mash  ...) lettuce for me
  • 1 ripe but firm avocado
  • 1 grapefruit
  • 1/2 red apple Fuji Type
  • 1 small can of corn, about 100 gr
  • Cherry tomatoes (about 30 gr)
  •  20g diced Emmental (cheese of your choice, cheddar can also be good)
  • Blond raisins (optional)
For the sauce:
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil or canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar or balsamic vinegar
  • ½ shallot, diced small
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Salt
  • Pepper 


Leftover roast chicken helps saving time for this salad.

If you choose chicken cutlets, several possibilities:

- You can poach them 10 minutes in a vegetable or chicken broth.
- Or you can season with salt and pepper and fry in a little oil.
- Or sometimes I put the cutlets in a suitable plastic bag for baking. 
I add in a chopped onion, a coarsely chopped tomato and I crumbled half of a stock cube. Then I bake the chicken for 35 min at 410°F.

So cut the cooked chicken into pieces (I do not keep the bones) and set aside.

Wash the lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, apple and grapefruit.

Drain well the salad and cut it roughly with your hands.

Cut the cherry tomatoes in half.

* Peel and segment the grapefruit remove the white membranes and cut the flesh into small cubes.

Cut the cheese into cubes.

Prepare the sauce in a small bowl, put the mustard, and pour vinegar and olive oil. Whisk well.

Cut half a shallot into small cubes and add to the oil / vinegar mixture. 

Add salt and pepper to taste.

To serve:

Harmoniously arrange the salad on the plates and sprinkle with corn.

Add the cherry tomatoes, pieces of grapefruit and chicken.

Cut the apple in half and then into strips about 1 cm thick, and cut the strips in half.

Cut avocado and proceed in the same way as for apples.

Add them to your salad and add the cheese.

Season the salad with the sauce.

I usually sprinkle dried grape on my salad, I love the sweet touch that contrasts with the sauce.


* If you use an organic grapefruit which is better, you can keep the skin and make jam with it.

I cut the avocado and the apple at the last minute to prevent them being black.

Give a try to this fresh salad you’ll not be disappointed. Let me know about your ideas or opinions.
Many thanks for stopping by here.