Pasta Series, Recipes 3 comments on Tomato and Basil Mini Fusilli

Tomato and Basil Mini Fusilli

December is one of my favorite months. It’s crazy and hectic but well worth it. I love waiting for my loved ones to step out of the plane, I love the lights, I love the cold and warmth in the atmosphere.

During that month, there is rarely a free evening at home doing nothing. There’s always an event to attend, someone to see, or just too much traffic. But there’s always that one day, where you find yourself with nothing to do and you sneak back home after work to relax. Two nights ago, we made these delicious mini fusilli with extra tomatoes and basil we had in the fridge. These kind of meals are best had on the living room floor, with an excellent bottle of wine and a great movie.

tomato and basil fusilli | breadonbutter

What you’ll need:

  • A box of mini fusilli
  • 2 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 medium red tomatoes, diced
  • 8 basil leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Grated parmesan cheese

How to make it:

  1. In a pot, boil water and cook the pasta until al dente.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, cook the onions and garlic in 1 Tbsp of olive oil until slightly golden.
  3. Add the tomatoes, the rest of the olive oil, salt and pepper to taste and bring to the boil.
  4. Once it’s boiled, lower the heat and mash gently with a mixer handle.
  5. Taste and season accordingly, then add the basil, mix for a minute and turn off the heat.
  6. Remove the pasta from the colander and place in the dish. Add the sauce on top and sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese.

Enjoy with red or whichever wine you prefer 😉

Sobremesa topic for this meal: The Christmas menu, how to decorate the house for Christmas Eve, plans for New Year’s Eve.

tomato and basil fusilli | breadonbutter tomato and basil fusilli | breadonbutter

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Recipes 0 comments on Fresh Avocado Toast for Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner

Fresh Avocado Toast for Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner

As some of you might have noticed, I’ve been all over the place lately. Juggling between work, the last finishing touches of the new house, social events and emotional fatigue (due to everything that’s been happening in the world, touching our most favorite places), I have come to neglect Breadonbutter. I honestly feel like I’ve been neglecting my child. I think about it all the time and feel guilty – just like all the moms out there; and whenever I see something related to food or travel, or think of a story that would be interesting to share, I immediately jot it down on my blog to-do list. Knowing me, the fact that this love story between that website of mine and myself will be hitting three years in December, I just know it’s going to last forever. So no matter how long I’m away, know that I’ll always be back to share interesting stories, recipes, DIY projects and travel guides with you all.

Since I’ve also been too busy to cook, I’ve been all about easy, fast but nonetheless healthy recipes lately. The one I made today for lunch literally took 5 minutes, and it was completely satisfying and delicious. What I love the most about this recipe is that it can be made for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Whenever you’re in need of a healthy and boosting breakfast, this should be your go to. When you’re looking for a lunch recipe on the go, this is it. Finally, when you get home from work craving something flavorsome but can’t deal with cutting vegetables and washing the dishes, well that’s the recipe you should opt for! The seasoning will depend on the time of day. Whether it’s for lunch or dinner, add some chili flakes to give it a punch. Lemon juice can also be avoided for breakfast.

So there it is. Fresh avocado toast topped with tomatoes and basil.

What you’ll need (for 1 person)

  • Half a whole-wheat baguette
  • Half an avocado
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 0.5 Tbsp olive oil
  • 0.5 tsp ginger powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • 2 small tomatoes, sliced coarsely
  • 2 large basil leaves
  • Chili flakes (optional)

How to make it

  1. Slice the bread in half and grill them until crunchy.
  2. In a bowl, crush the avocado with a fork, then add the lemon juice, olive oil, ginger powder, and salt, and mix until combined.
  3. Spread the avocado on the bread, place the tomatoes then the basil on top and sprinkle with chili flakes.

Enjoy the flavors 😉

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Recipes 0 comments on Pesto Bruschetta

Pesto Bruschetta

Most of you must be aware by now that Jean is one of Bibayti’s co-founders. This amazing platform, similar to La Belle Assiette in France and the UK, aims at gathering profiles and menus of Chefs (amateurs or professionals) for people to choose from when they organize a brunch, lunch, or dinner at home.

Jean is also a Chef on the platform and I’m his helper and dessert person.

A few weeks ago, we got to cook dinner for 24 people in Saida. It was the craziest food experience I ever had (after the Beirut Street Food Festival saga), and I thought I’d share the recipe of the Pesto Bruschetta we made that night.

Pesto Bruschetta Recipe

What you’ll need (for 6 persons)

  • 6 small to medium tomatoes (make sure to choose them red and juicy), diced
  • 3 cups of fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 5 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 6 medium slices of bread (the kind you prefer) – I chose a whole-wheat country bread

How to make it

  1. In a bowl, mix the tomatoes and garlic
  2. In a small blender, place the basil leaves, 4 Tbsp of olive oil and 1 tsp of salt and blend until you get the texture of a pesto sauce
  3. Add the sauce to the tomatoes and garlic and mix
  4. Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste
  5. In an oven dish, place the bread slices with a sprinkle of olive oil on top and heat them in the oven until golden
  6. Take the bread out of the oven and distribute the tomato mix evenly on top of the slices
  7. Serve and enjoy!

 So, what’s for dinner? 🙂

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Recipes 0 comments on Quick Cheese On Toast For the Tired and Dangerously Hungry

Quick Cheese On Toast For the Tired and Dangerously Hungry

I’ve been in London for the past few days visiting my sister but also attending the best conference I’ve attended in a while: Food Blogger Connect 2015. I’ll write a post on that experience later but right now, I’d like to share a simple recipe inspired by my first workshop (which was recipe writing) at Food Blogger Connect. We had so much fun during those two hours trying out our recipe-writing skills by focusing on a simple recipe: cheese on toast. When we were asked to write a first draft and read it out loud, I was amazed at how different each recipe was. We truly interpret things differently, which makes food all the more interesting. Some presented the Indian way to make cheese on toast, others added a splash of a sauce, and one of them even took it to the next level by adding Tuscan touches to it.

Mine was pretty simple as cheese on toast represents a fast but scrumptious dinner to me. It’s for a typical rainy evening when you’re so tired and so hungry that you can’t be bothered cooking a full-fledged meal. I’ll guarantee you’ll like it though.

If you’re reading this on that specific night you get back home tired and dangerously hungry, here’s the recipe written in a way to fit your mood 😉

Quick Cheese on Toast For the Tired and Dangerously Hungry

Ingredients (serves 1 easily satisfied individual):

  • 2 Fat slices of toast (Not gluten-free unless you have a severe allergy to it)
  • 2 Thick slices of cheddar cheese
  • 2 Tbsp of coarsely grated emmental cheese (or any other soft cheese of your preference)
  • 1 tsp of butter

How to make it:

  1. Take out any pan you can find lying around and heat it up on medium heat.
  2. Melt the butter in the pan and throw one slice of toast on top.
  3. Add all of the cheese on the toast until it forms a mountain of cheesy goodness, then top it all with another slice of toast.
  4. Press both slices together and wait for the cheese to melt all over the place.
  5. Turn the sandwich on the other side and cook until it gets the way you like it.

Eat and Repeat!

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Recipes 0 comments on Vegetable and Crab Maki-Like Rolls

Vegetable and Crab Maki-Like Rolls

I’ve recently become a big fan of amuse-bouches. Honestly, I never considered them satisfying and it put me in a bad mood to know dinner was served in small quantities of everything. But because I’ve been paying attention to the quantities on my plate, I have found that small appetizers can help in measuring how many proteins, carbs and vegetables I have in one sitting. Surprisingly, I now sometimes make myself a plate of vegetable appetizers for dinner and I go to bed having eaten only that!

I have also found that the shape of the food we eat plays a big role when it comes to how much we enjoy it. For example, I’m a big fan of sushi and spaghetti. When we made zucchini noodles (recipe here), it felt like I was eating a giant bowl of spaghetti, which not only did I enjoy, but helped ban the guilt I feel when I eat carbs. The other night, I felt like sushi rolls but rice was out of the question at that hour. So we set out to make these amazingly fresh and delicious maki-like vegetable rolls.

Vegetable and Crab Maki Roll Recipe

vegetable and crab maki rolls | breadonbutter

What you’ll need (for 6 rolls):

  • 2 cucumbers
  • 50 g packages shredded crab
  • 1/4 avocado, sliced
  • A bunch of fresh coriander leaves

How to make it:

vegetable and crab maki rolls | breadonbutter

  • Peel the cucumber and slice them thinly (not too thin though) in length.
  • Place the cucumber slice on a plate, then place a slice of avocado perpendicular to the slice, a sprinkle of crab and a coriander leave.
  • Roll the cucumber around the other ingredients and stick them with a toothpick.

vegetable and crab maki rolls | breadonbutter

Serve on a plate and enjoy!

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Recipes 0 comments on Healthy And Refreshing Popsicles In 3 Simple Steps

Healthy And Refreshing Popsicles In 3 Simple Steps

I think it’s safe to say we can all feel global warming taking its toll on our planet. The past few days have been hotter than ever. I don’t remember ever having a similar heat wave in Lebanon except for one time only, a few years ago. The best thing we can all do is stay in air-conditioned spaces until we can soak our bodies in water all day long on Saturday. I suggest you also make these refreshingly delicious popsicles to go with your floating air mattress.

The recipe is composed solely of fruits and requires 3 small and simple steps. The only thing you need to “invest” in is a Popsicle mold, which can be found in big supermarkets.

Healthy and Refreshing Popsicle Recipe

What you’ll need (for 8 medium popsicles):

popsicles | breadonbutter

  • 1/2 watermelon
  • 1 Plum, sliced
  • 1 Peach, sliced
  • 1 Kiwi, sliced

How to make it:

popsicles | breadonbutter

popsicles | breadonbutter

  1. Crush the watermelon with a blender handle (or with a manual crusher if you don’t have one).
  2. Place the sliced fruits in the molds and pour the watermelon juice over a sifter on top.
  3. Cover with sticks and freeze for 2 hours (or overnight if you’re making them in advance).

popsicles | breadonbutter

And that’s it! Three easy and simple steps to freshness! 🙂

Hoping temperatures will drop soon. Until then, stay cool.

lolli1

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Recipes 0 comments on Comfort Food: Potatoes and Spices

Comfort Food: Potatoes and Spices

There are days when you just know what you need to eat to feel better. We all have that unwritten list of comfort food that is easy to make and can satisfy our tummies and overworked minds in no time. I won’t bore you with my long list. For now, I’ll just present you with one of my go-to dishes. I discovered this obvious meal at my mother-in-law’s one day. We got to their house one afternoon and I saw that they had a tasty-looking potato meal. I asked what it was and they answered something like ‘teased potatoes’. I’d like to tease my potatoes is what I thought. The recipe was simple, I was told. It’s all about the spice mix you add to potato cubes, and – stay cool – adding an egg at the very end!  Without knowing exactly which spices to use and what were the exact steps, I set out to make my own ‘teased’ potatoes. I cannot guarantee that the ingredient quantities I’ll be sharing now are the same every time. This is a question of taste, and of pure fun. Just put on some happy music and go spontaneous.

I’ll share the ingredient and the steps I go through to make this dish and let you take it from there.

Comfort Food: Potatoes and Spices Recipe

comfort food | breadonbutter

What you’ll need (for 2 persons):

  • 4 large potatoes, cut in small cubes
  • 1 Tbsp Chili powder or Peperoncino
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 0.5 tsp Ginger powder
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • Salt, to taste
  • 3 eggs
  • 4 Tbsp Olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 medium onion, diced

How to make it:

comfort food | breadonbutter

  1. In a large pot, cook the garlic and onions in the olive oil slightly.
  2. Add the potato cubes and mix to combine everything together. Cook until the potatoes are slightly tender.
  3. Add all of the spices and mix to combine.
  4. Cook until the potatoes are tender the add the salt and immediately break the 3 eggs then mix to combine.

Serve once the eggs are cooked and enjoy (dare I say, in front of the TV)! 😉

comfort food | breadonbutter

What’s your go-to comfort food?

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Product of the Week, Recipes 0 comments on Product of the Week: Carob Honey Straight from the LIVCD Program

Product of the Week: Carob Honey Straight from the LIVCD Program

A few weeks ago, USAID (U.S. Agency for International Development) invited a few bloggers at their stand at the Horeca Exhibition 2015 to explain a bit more about the LIVCD Program (Lebanon Industry Value Chain Development).

The goals of the program are to “enhance economic opportunities for small businesses, women, and youth”, “improve Lebanon’s economic stability, focusing on rural priority areas”, and “upgrade Lebanese value chains to increase their competitiveness in domestic and export markets”.

To achieve the above goals, an analysis was made and 8 targeted value chains were chosen: processed foods, rural tourism, floriculture, grapes, olive oil, apples, pears, avocados, cherries, and a basket of rural agricultural products including thyme, pine nuts, honey, and free range eggs.

At Horeca, we were lucky to have a guided visit of all the exhibitors of the above products and we got to meet them all and taste their products.

I especially liked this Carob Honey for many reasons.

carob honey

Carob is full of health benefits, including being an antioxidant, an antiseptic, improving digestion and lowering cholesterol levels in the blood, regulating blood pressure and helping prevent lung cancer, treating flu and anemia, and fighting against osteoporosis. Apart from all those benefits, it acts as a substitute for cocoa powder or chocolate in cakes and helps thicken baked goods. Add honey to it and you have the most natural sweetener you can ask for. I loved adding it to my balsamic salad dressing.

Just add a tablespoon of Carob Honey to 1.5 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar and 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and add it to a simple lettuce, cherry tomatoes and goat cheese salad. You’ll have a delicious meal ready in minutes!

carob honey

You can find out more about the USAID initiative on their facebook page .

Any thoughts on this wonderful initiative?

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Recipes, Sweet 0 comments on Baba au Rum Re-Visited Recipe – The Mini Version

Baba au Rum Re-Visited Recipe – The Mini Version

I once told you the story of the 14-year-old me and the Baba au Rum cake (you can read about it here). I’ve been making this recipe for a really long time (almost 15 years now!) and I’m happy to be famous for it amongst the people I love. So yesterday, when it was of general opinion that a nice baba au rum should be baked, I decided to try it a bit differently. First, I wanted to make several small ones, and second, I wanted to try a tip a Chef had given a while ago at Thanks for Giving. The tip was that instead of pouring the syrup directly on the cake while it’s still hot, dip the cake into a big casserole full of syrup. And so I did! And here’s the result.

baba au rum | breadonbutter

The step-by-step recipe of the baba au rum cake is on this link. Below is the briefer and updated version:

Ingredients (for 12 mini cakes)

For the cake

– 8 eggs
– 16 tablespoons breadcrumbs (i.e. chapelure in French)
– 8 tablespoons flour
– 4 teaspoons baking powder
– 9 tablespoons sugar
– A bit of lemon zest
– 0.5 small coffee cup of cooking oil
– A pinch of vanilla powder (or 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract)

For the Syrup

– 2 cups of water
– 2 cups of sugar
– 1 tablespoon lemon juice
– 40 cl Rum – I personally prefer the Negrita brand (buy the big bottle for those crazy drinkers who might add some)

How to make it:

  1. Beat the eggs, sugar, vanilla and lemon zest together in a bowl
  2. While still beating, add gradually the oil, the flour, the baking powder and the breadcrumbs. Beat until smooth
  3. Pour into buttered and floured ramekins and place in the oven for 15 minutes
  4. Meanwhile, prepare the syrup. In a saucepan, place the water, sugar and lemon juice (WITHOUT the Rhum) and barely bring to the boil (always mix it while it’s heating for the sugar not to stick at the bottom of the saucepan). Once it’s done, remove it from the fire and add the 40 cl of rhum
  5. Keep the syrup in the saucepan. When the cakes are done, dip them one by one in the syrup until they inflate and become bigger than their original size

baba au rum | breadonbutter

baba au rum | breadonbutter

And serve! I love this idea for future parties and maybe even for gifts for friends hosting parties themselves!

What do you think? 

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Recipes, Soup Series 1 comment on The Soup Series: Toasty Onion Soup

The Soup Series: Toasty Onion Soup

This soup was the only one I ate when I was younger. On rainy days, we’d come back home from school and we could just smell it. The best thing about it was the whole process. My mom would serve soup in an oven-friendly dish, grab a round toast, toss it in, top it all off with grated Emmental Cheese, and let it all heat up in the oven for about 7 minutes.

I used to think that onion soup was a complicated one to make, but turns out it is really easy. It could also be a great start for when you throw a dinner party at home, especially that you can make it ahead of time and add the cheese and bread as soon as your guests arrive.

So here goes!

Breadonbutter’s Toasty Onion Soup Recipe

What you’ll need:

onion soup | breadonbutter

  • 5 to 6 medium white onions, diced
  • 2 tbsp cooking oil of your choice
  • 30 g unsalted butter
  • 2 liters of water
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • Bread, of your choice
  • Emmental cheese (or if you prefer brie or camembert cheese, you can do it!)

How to make it:

1) In a large casserole, throw in the cooking oil, butter and diced onions and cook until lightly golden

2) Add the water and bring to the boil

3) Lower the heat, add salt and pepper, then let it simmer for about 10 minutes until the water is slightly colored. Turn off the heat

onion soup | breadonbutter

4) In a soup bowl, spoon a bit of soup, add the bread and cheese on top and place in the oven for a minimum of 10 minutes, depending on how you prefer the cheese to be (slightly burnt or just melted)

onion soup | breadonbutter

soup

onion soup | breadonbutter

onion soup | breadonbutter

onion soup | breadonbutter

And serve! Satisfying, tasty, toasty and full of flavors!

onion-soup-7

onion soup | breadonbutter

Are you a fan of onion soup?

P.S. Check out previous recipes from the soup series here.

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Lurpak Cook's Range, Recipes, Sweet 2 comments on Coffee Cake Topped With Caramelized Toffee Nuts

Coffee Cake Topped With Caramelized Toffee Nuts

I’ve been thinking lately about the cake recipes I already master (example lemon cake, fluffy chocolate cake and baba au rhum), and decided it was time to add a few newcomers to the list. So I’ve been trying out new ones, this one included. I wasn’t expecting it to be an immediate success but it definitely entered the list of possible cakes to bake when in need of a warm snack.

coffee cake | breadonbutter

The preparation doesn’t take much time, but it does need baking time so be patient.

Coffee Cake Topped With Caramelized Toffee Nuts

What you’ll need:

coffee cake | breadonbutter

For the Cake

  •  150 g unsalted butter, softened – You can use the Lurpak Cook’s Range butter blocks for better measurement, they’re 50 g each.
  • 130 g soft brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk, extra
  • 150 g plain flour, sifted
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp hot water
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee
  • 0.25 cup skimmed milk

For the Toffee Nuts

  • 220 g caster sugar
  • 0.5 cup water
  • 20 g butter
  • 100 g raw almonds (or any choice of nuts, they can also be mixed)

How to make it:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius
  2. Place the softened butter and brown sugar in a bowl and beat for about 10 minutes until creamy
  3. Add the egg and egg yolk and beat well
  4. Add the flour and baking powder and beat until combined
  5. Place the coffee and hot water in a cup and stir
  6. Add the coffee mixture and milk to the butter mixture and fold through
  7. Spoon the mixture into a greased mold
  8. Bake for 45 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean, then set aside
  9. Make the toffee nuts: In a saucepan, place the caster sugar, water and butter on medium heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then bring to the boil. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes until dark golden, then continue mixing with a wooden spoon until a soft caramel paste forms. Add the nuts and stir to combine. Spoon immediately over the cake and serve!

coffee cake | breadonbutter

coffee cake | breadonbutter

coffee cake | breadonbutter

Are you a coffee lover? Would you make this cake?

Items used in photos: Tablecoth from Zara Home; Plates, Cups and Forks from my mom’s cupboards 😉

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Christmas, Recipes, Sweet 0 comments on Sugar Coat Your Holidays With These Scrumptious Cookies

Sugar Coat Your Holidays With These Scrumptious Cookies

If you’re a cook at heart, you surely know about the food network. Their portfolio of cooks and chefs is the most fascinating and diverse. Naturally, I have my favorites, and Giada de Laurentiis is unquestionably one of them. Italian by origin and Emmy Award winner for outstanding Lifestyle host, this woman fascinates me and inspires me.

A few days ago, Jean showed me this delicious ricotta lemon cookie recipe to try at home, knowing how much I love baking. Turns out it was a recipe from Giada on the foodnetwork.com. So I had to try it right away! And then of course, give it a Christmassy feel. So here goes!

Ricotta Lemon Cookies Recipe

What you’ll need:

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

For the Cookies:

  • 2.5 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 100 g unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 250 g ricotta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • The zest of 1 lemon

For the Glaze:

  • 1.5 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsps lemon juice
  • The zest of 1 lemon

How to make it:

Make the cookies:

1) In a bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking powder and set aside.

2) In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with a mixer until light and fluffy.

3) Add the eggs one by one, mixing in between until combined.

4) Add the ricotta, lemon juice, and lemon zest and beat to combine.

5) Add the dry ingredients and mix well.

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

6) On an oven tray, place a baking sheet and spoon”how much” the dough on top, evenly and leaving a bit of space between each so they don’t stick together later.

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

7) Bake for 15 minutes or until golden on the sides then let them rest and cool 20 minutes.

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

Make the glaze:

1) Combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest and stir until combined and smooth.

2) After the cookies have cooled, spoon the glazing on top and let it harden for 2 hours.

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

Have it with a dark coffee or mint tea!

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

ricotta lemon cookies | breadonbutter

 What do you think?