Zucchini and Sweet Potato Tart

This week went by rather quick. The weather is still in April fools mood, giving us a taste of everything, the only sign of spring has been some crocus blooming in my garden.

My veggie tart has been inspired by these gorgeous ratatouille tarts I’ve seen online. Instead of using all ratatouille ingredients, I’ve skipped the tomatoes and eggplants and used sweet potatoes and red peppers for some red color. Pretty simple ingredients but it will take some time and patience to assemble the veggies. In the end I was happy with the result, gorgeous and delicious!

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Before

and after baking

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Zucchini and Sweet Potato Tart

Crust:

  • 300 g white spelt flour
  • 100 g butter, melted
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • room temperature water

-In a mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt, add the melted butter and a few tablespoons of water. Mix together, adding more water if needed. Knead only until well combined. Let rest in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Vegetable filling:

  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 2 green zucchini
  • 2 yellow squash
  • 1 red pepper or italian tomato
  • 1 small onion
  • 50 g grated old cheddar or Gruyère cheese
  • milk or cream
  • sea salt, black pepper, garlic powder, nutmeg, dried oregano and basil, or herb the provence

-Slice all vegetables thinly by hand or use a mandolin. The sweet potatoes have to be thinner than the other vegetables, because they need a little longer to cook through. You want to be able to see the green and yellow skin of the squash and zucchini. (You might not need all the vegetables)

-Line bottom of a 11-inch/ 28 cm tart/pie form, grease sides. Roll out dough to fit the form. Prick bottom with a fork. Sprinkle evenly with the grated cheese.

-Starting on the outside, alternate with sweet potato, green zucchini and then yellow squash until you fill the entire form. I’ve added the onions and red pepper last.

-Add some milk or cream and season generously and evenly with salt, pepper, garlic powder, nutmeg and herbs.

-Bake in preheated 350F/180C oven (convection setting) for about 40 minutes or until crust is golden brown and sweet potatoes are tender. Cover with aluminum foil halfway through baking. If it looks dry, add some more milk or cream. Let rest for a few minutes before cutting.

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Tip: Try to get same size, and not to thick, vegetables for the slices to be similar, it will be easier to assemble.

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I would like to dedicate this to all the lives lost and those injured in the tragic #Humboltbroncos accident last week on Friday, in Saskatchewan, Canada. Our thoughts and prayers go out the families and everyone involved.

 

Ursula 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mango Coconut Rose Tart

I hope you all had a happy Easter and a great start into April!

I can’t believe I am saying this but last week I did not feel like baking anything special for Easter. Last year I have made a Swiss Carrot Cake , this year instead of something Easter themed I was in the mood of making something bright and flowery. Thinking of daffodils, it looked more like a rose in the end, but surely made me happy. The mango pairs nicely with my coconut custard, a little exotic taste that makes you dream of a beautiful island.

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Mango Coconut Rose Tart

Crust:

  • 150 g white spelt flour
  • 50 g buckwheat flour
  • 100 g butter, soft
  • 2-3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • pinch of sea salt

-Whisk together butter, maple syrup and egg until creamy. Add salt, spelt and buckwheat flour, mix until combined. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

-Line the bottom of a 9-inch/23 cm tart form with parchment paper, grease sides. Preheat oven to 375F/180C, convection setting.

-Roll dough out to fit form, prick bottom evenly with a fork, cover bottom with a piece of parchment paper, to add some weight, fill with some dried chickpeas or other legumes. Blind bake for about 30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove parchment paper with the legumes half way through baking. Let cool completely before filling.

Coconut Custard

-You can find the recipe here: Coconut Custard mini tarts with mixed berries

-Prepare in advance as the custard needs some time in the refrigerator to set.

-(Instead of the 1 1/2 canned coconut milk, I used 500 ml coconut milk from a tetra pak that does only contain coconut milk.)

Mango Rose Topping:

  • About 1 1/2 large mangoes, thinly sliced

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-Fill tart shell with the coconut custard, about 3/4 full. To make the rose, start on the outside and work your way towards the center, as you like.

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I hope you’ll give it a try, let me know if you do! You can tag me on Instagram so I can see your creation:)

littleswisslittlecanadian

 

I wish you all a lovely week!

Ursula

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Haselnusstorte / Hazelnut Cake

Hello everyone! It was my husbands birthday yesterday and this Hazelnut cake was his birthday cake wish. The recipe is adapted from my 1982 Betty Bossi book, my usual go to for European style cakes. It has a rich hazelnut flavor, a little bit of rum, no butter and only a tiny bit of flour. The only heavy part of the cake is the whipped cream, I really like it, but have to admit I do not tolerate cream that well, I ended up having a stomach ache. That is why I mostly eat dairy free, I don’t seem to have a problem with butter and eat only once in a while some cheese…I used to eat a lot of cheese before!

My husband loved it! It is really delicious!

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I’ve been busy looking after my son, he has been sick with a high fever since Sunday. Poor guy, he was only able to eat a tiny slice of the cake.

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Prepare the cake at least 1 day ahead before cutting and adding the filling. I made the cake refined sugar free, feel free to use regular sugar. The recipe is only for 2 layers. I ended up baking another half of the recipe, you could also just double the recipe. I drizzled the bottom 2 layers with a little bit more rum before spreading the whipped cream.

 

Haselnusstorte/Hazelnut Cake

Ingredients:

  • 220 g coconut sugar
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1 tbsp rum
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 300 g ground hazelnuts
  • 1 tbsp all-purpose unbleached flour

-Line a 24 cm Springform pan with parchment paper, grease and flour the sides. Preheat oven to 180C.

-Whisk together egg yolks and sugar, add rum.

-Whip egg whites with the salt and baking powder until stiff peaks form. Add the honey and continue to whip for a little longer.

-Mix hazelnuts and flour, add to the egg yolk mix, alternating with egg whites, a little at the time, and gently fold under with a spatula. Pour into prepared form.

-Bake in preheated 180C for 20 minutes then reduce heat to 150C and bake for about 40 minutes, or toothpick inserted into middle comes out clean. Let cool completely. Let rest for 1-3 days before cutting and filling.

Filling:  

  • 200 ml 35% cream
  • 3 tbsp ground hazelnuts
  • 3 tbsp honey

-Whip cream until stiff peaks form, add the hazelnuts and honey, mix well. Fill and decorate cake as desired.

-Store in refrigerator.

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Wishing you all a lovely week!

Enjoy!

Ursula

 

Follow me on Instagram: littleswisslittlecanadian

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Linzertorte

If you’ve been following me for a while you might remember my Linzertorte aux amandes . While this is such a delightful cake you just have to try a traditional Linzertorte. A nut-crust filled with red currant or raspberry jam. It gets its name from the Austrian city of Linz and is believed to be the oldest cake in the world, with recipes dating back to 1653.

While traditionally it is covered with a lattice top, I decorated it Valentines Day style!

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A few days ago I was HAPPILY surprised to see that I got a small feature in the Canadian Living magazine!! I couldn’t believe it, I am so happy. I only have a small blog and Instagram, I am not a professional baker and do not make professional pictures, but I’m having fun and it makes me happy when I get so many lovely comments and likes! Last fall I’ve made their Caramel Apple Sticky Buns and tagged them on Instagram. Well now they are actually showing my picture in the current issue, they are so awesome!

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These are little tarts I’ve made last year. Picture is before baking. The dough is lighter in color because I used blanched almonds.

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The recipe is slightly adapted from Betty Bossi’s: Kuchen Cakes and Torten

 

Linzertorte

Ingredients:

  • 150 g butter, soft
  • 100 g coconut sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp cloves, ground
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 150 g ground hazelnuts, or almonds unblanched
  • 150 g unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 200 g red currant or raspberry jam

-Stir together the butter, sugar and salt, add the egg and the spices. Mix in the hazelnuts or almonds and flour until well combined. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

-Grease a 22 cm Springform or pie/tart form (with removable bottom would be great but not necessary). Roll out 1/3 of the dough directly on the base of the Springform. Take another 1/3 and form the sides. Fill with the jam. Decorate with remaining dough; lattice, hearts…

-Brush with an egg-white. ( I did not do that)

-Bake in preheated 350F/180C oven for about 40 minutes. You might have to cover it with aluminum foil to prevent from getting to dark. Let cool completely.

-You can decorate it with sliced almonds and icing sugar if desired.

-The original recipe calls for 150 g sugar.

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Enjoy!

Happy Weekend!

Ursula

 

You can find me on Instagram: littleswisslittlecanadian

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spinach and Cheese Dip Bites

A very happy New Year! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas time and hope your having a great start into the new year 2018! I’ve been a bit absent lately mainly because I had my mom and stepfather visiting over the holidays. The short time we usually get to spend together is always very precious and I probably only get to see them again in summer. We had a wonderful Christmas, they also had some taste of what a real Canadian winter is all about;) lol. On the day they arrived in Toronto they ended up having to spend the night there, because all connecting flights to London, Ontario, were cancelled because of snow squalls. We got so much snow that day, at least 40 cm!

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For New Years Eve I’ve made these yummy spinach cheese bites, with homemade puff pastry. I usually don’t eat so much cheese, just once in a while, because I love it:) Homemade puff pastry is delicious but takes some time to make, so feel free to use store bought. These bites are great as an appetizer or served with a tossed salad as a meal. Maybe next time I’ll make a pie size version:)

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Spinach and Cheese Dip Bites

Yields: 24

Filling:

  • 2 cups chopped frozen spinach, thawed
  • 1 tsp garlic finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup garlic cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 can Pillsbury crescent dough or other puff pastry

-Combine spinach, garlic and Parmesan cheese. Blend in cream cheese and 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese. Season with salt and pepper.

-On a lightly floured surface roll out puff pastry into a rectangle. Cut into 24 squares. Place each square into a lightly greased muffin tin. Gently push down.

-Place one rounded teaspoon of your spinach mixture into each square. Top with the remaining mozzarella cheese.

-Bake in a preheated 375F oven for about 15 minutes or golden brown. Let rest a few minutes before removing.

 

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Here is my quick Puff pastry recipe, from Betty Bossi

  • 250 g unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 175 g butter, cold, cut into approx. 4 cm squares
  • 150 ml cold water

-Mix together flour and salt, add the butter and water until everything holds together. Butter pieces have to stay big.

Step 1: On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough into a rectangle, 1 cm thick. Fold in both sides towards the middle, then fold one side onto the other. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.

-Roll out dough again into a rectangle and repeat step 1. Refrigerate and repeat 4x all together. After the 4th time refrigerate for 30 minutes.

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Tip: Puff pastry needs to stay cold. Don’t knead left over pieces together, lay on top of each other, then roll out. Can be frozen for up to 1 month.

-This is really a much quicker way to make puff pastry and I find it turns out very tasty.

 

I wish you all a very happy and healthy New Year!

Enjoy!

Ursula

 

Follow me on Instagram: littleswisslittlecanadian

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pumpkin Spice Babka

This is just a simple sweet yeastbread filled with pumpkin and spices and glazed generously with spiced maple syrup. I just love the smell and taste of this. I usually make babkas (Nussstriezel) filled with ground hazelnuts or almonds, I was surprised how good it was with a pumpkin filling.

Nothing complicated for the filling, just pumpkin puree sweetened with coconut sugar, spiced it up with cinnamon and pumpkin spice mix. For the dough I used my sweet yeastbread recipe that you can find here: Almond Croissants just changed the flour ingredients to 200 g unbleached all-purpose flour and 100 g spelt flour and spiced it up a bit by adding 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1 tsp cinnamon:)

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Pumpkin Spice Babka

Dough:

 

Pumpkin Spice filling:

  • 200 g pumpkin puree, (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 3 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice mix

Spiced Maple Syrup Glaze

  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice mix

-Prepare dough in advance, it needs at least 1 hour to rise. In the meanwhile prepare your pumpkin filling by mixing together pumpkin puree, coconut sugar and spices.

-Whisk together maple syrup, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice mix, set aside.

-Line a loaf pan or a baking sheet with parchment paper

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-When doubled in size, roll out dough into a rectangular shape. Then spread pumpkin filling evenly all over. Start rolling dough up from the longest side, like you would for a cinnamon bun and gently pinch ends together. Cut log lengthwise in half so filling is exposed, pinch one end. Twist both pieces, pinch the other end to secure.

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-Place in prepared loaf pan or baking sheet. Cover and let rise for another 30 minutes.

-Bake in preheated 350F/180C oven for 40 minutes.

-About 25 minute into baking brush some of the syrup onto babka. Bake until golden brown. Remove from stove and brush with remaining syrup. Let cool before cutting.

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–Make sure your spice mixes are not old, it looses its flavor over time.–

 

Wishing everyone a happy weekend and to all my Canadian friends a happy Thanksgiving!

Enjoy!

Ursula

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plum Rose Tarts with an Almond Shortbread Crust

Happy weekend everyone!

Fall has finally arrived! It’s been crazy hot lately, which made it kind of harder to think of fall baking:) I’ve found some beautiful local plums and like every year turned them into some kind of dessert(s). Our annual favorite happens to be a Zwetschgen-Streusel Cake (Plum-Crumble-Cake). I took the recipe from my Peach-Crumble-Cake/ Pfirsich-Streuselkuchen just used plums instead of peaches, so delicious!

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Instead of using apples to make roses I thought I give it a try with plums. It was a little tricky because the plums were very soft, you definitely need some patience;), in the end I was happy, it worked out beautifully!

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Baked in a yummy almond shortbread crust

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Plum Tarts with an Almond Shortbread Crust

Yields: 4 small tarts

Almond Shortbread Crust

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1/2 cup almonds, finely ground
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 lg egg yolk

-In a small bowl, with a whisk, mix together butter, honey almond extract and egg yolk. Add flour, almonds and salt. Mix until well combined. Wrap dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1/2 hour.

-Start with cutting about 5 plums into very thin slices, once you assemble the roses you see if you might need more.

-Preheat oven to 375F. Grease 4 small tart forms.

-Take dough out of refrigerator and let it sit for a few minutes, otherwise it is very hard to roll out. Then roll out and cut to fit into each form, prick crust with a fork and place again in refrigerator for a few minutes.

-Assemble roses by starting on the outside working toward the center.

-I used a simple milk, egg, honey and cinnamon filling from my Peach Tart , I only used a little bit in each tart.

-Bake in preheated 375F oven for 10 minutes then reduce heat to 350F, for another 10-15 minutes, bake until golden brown and liquid is set. Cover with tin foil if crust is golden brown but liquid is not set. Let cool before taking out of forms.

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In memory of my late father-in-law who passed away one year ago.

 

Ursula