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!

IMG_3893

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:)

IMG_3968

IMG_3969

 

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.

 

IMG_3965

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.

IMG_3957

IMG_3958

IMG_3959

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

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!

IMG_3664

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!

IMG_3665

Baked in a yummy almond shortbread crust

img_3654.jpg

 

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.

IMG_3662

 

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

 

Ursula

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maple Coconut Tarts

Happy weekend everyone!! My kids had a week off from school for Spring (March) Break. Unfortunately the weather did not turn out to be so great…in other words, winter returned! For most of the week it was snowing and cold.

IMG_3002

Anyway I found another way of using Maple Syrup in a recipe…I promise I will stop soon, but it is still the season right!;) These Coconut Tarts were soooooo good! I will definitely make these again soon.

Use with your favorite pastry. Makes enough filling for 7 tarts. I will add the pastry I used.

IMG_3005

 

Maple Coconut Tarts

  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • pinch sea salt
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup coconut, shredded, unsweetened

 

-Preheat oven to 400F/200C. Grease 7 muffin tins and line with your favorite pastry.

-In a small bowl, mix all ingredients together well. Fill in prepared tart shells only 3/4 full. Bake at 400F/200C for 15 minutes.

 

 

Following recipe is adapted from my 1985 Betty Bossi book “Dessert Traeume”.

Pastry

  • 125 g unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 3 tbsp honey or sugar
  • 50 g butter, cold, cut in small pieces
  • 50 g coconut, shredded, unsweetened
  • 1 egg

-Mix flour, salt and honey or sugar. Add butter pieces and using your hands rub everything together until it resembles fine crumbs. Mix in coconuts then add the egg and mix everything well. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

-On a floured surface roll out dough and cut out circles to fit 7 muffin moulds.

 

IMG_3000

Coconut Dream!!

 

Enjoy!

 

You can find me on Instagram: #littleswisslittlecanadian

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coconut Custard mini tarts with mixed berries

Sometimes I just like to make mini desserts-they are just so cute and pretty. You can transform any regular size pie into mini tarts, of course it is a little bit more work, but it is totally worth it!

My family likes homemade pudding. I used to make it with regular milk and sugar but due to sensitivities I have to change recipes into dairy free versions. And I also like to stay away from refined sugar as much as possible. For the custard in this recipe I used coconut milk and honey to sweeten, and it turned out really great!

The tart shells are made with whole wheat flour. I definitely will try out some other flours, like spelt or kamut, in the future. They are healthy and easier to digest. I would love to hear what flours you use!!!

 

Tart shells

  • 1 1/2cup      whole wheat flour
  • 1/4cup         coconut oil, melted
  • 4tbsp           maple syrup
  • 1tsp              cinnamon
  • pinch           sea salt
  •                       water if mixture is to dry

-Mix ingredients and press into greased muffin tins. Bake at 350F/180C for about 10 minutes. Let cool in tins.

 

Coconut custard

  • 1 1/2 tins    coconut milk
  • 1/2cup        honey
  • 4tbsp          cornstarch
  • 1                   vanilla bean or 1 tsp vanilla extract

-In a medium saucepan add coconut milk, stir in cornstarch and honey. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, simmer and whisk until thickens. Remove from heat. Pour in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let cool. Refrigerate for about an hour.

-Spoon custard into tart shells and top with mixed berries, or any fruit, and toasted coconut if desired.

 

img_2577

 

 

img_2575

 

Enjoy!