For the Meatballs
3 cups cooked lentils (I used green lentils because they told their shape after being cooked)
1/4 cup sautéed mushrooms
1/4 cup onion, finely diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh sage
1/2 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper, plus MORE to taste
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 large eggs
1 cup part-skim ricotta
1 tablespoon vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
olive oil, for topping
*To make the lentils, in a large saucepan bring 6 cups water to a simmer. Add salt (like you’re salting pasta water), crushed garlic clove, wedge of a yellow onion, and a bay leaf to the simmering water. Add 2 cups dried lentils and cook for 25-30 minutes until tender and cooked through. Strain through a colander and discard the garlic, onion, and bay leaf. This method will leave you with extra cooked lentils for salads of dinner.
To make the meatballs, in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment, add lentils and mushrooms. Blend and pulse until relatively smooth, about 2 minutes. Mixture will be slightly dry and still a bit chunky. That’s right! Transfer to a large bowl.
To the pureed lentil mixture add onion, garlic, fresh herbs, spices, salt, pepper and breadcrumbs.
In a medium bowl whisk eggs until well combined. Whisk in the ricotta cheese, Worcestershire sauce, and mustard. Add the wet ingredients to the lentil mixture and use a wooden spoon to combine all the ingredients. Stir until all the ingredients are evenly combined.
Place racks in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
Use a large tablespoon scoop to meatballs onto the prepared baking sheet, leaving 1-inch between each meatball. Drizzle literally with olive oil and bake for 20 to 22 minutes until cooked through and lightly golden on the bottom. Remove from the oven and allow to rest while the rest of the ingredients come together.
To make the gravy, in a large skillet melt butter over medium heat. Add onions and saute until softened, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the flour and whisk immediately, allowing the butter to absorb the flour and whisking constantly for 1 minute. Slowly stream in the vegetable broth, whisking constantly. The mixture will thicken and then appear thin again once all of the vegetable stock is added. Add the soy sauce. Reduce to medium-low heat and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Whisk in the cream, salt, pepper, thyme, and mushrooms. Simmer until thickened again, about 4 minutes more. Keep the gravy warm over very low heat.
To serve, just before serving, toss lentil balls in warm gravy. Place on a plate alongside mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce. Top the mashed potatoes with cranberry sauce as well. Enjoy warm.
I find that it’s easiest to make the potatoes and cranberry sauce before the lentil balls and the gravy.
1 1/4 pounds (5 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup light corn syrup
3 cups light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 pounds pecans, chopped
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
For the crust, beat the butter and granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, until light, approximately 3 minutes. Add the eggs and the vanilla and mix well. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix the dry ingredients into the batter with the mixer on low speed until just combined. Press the dough evenly into an ungreased 18 by 12 by 2-inch baking sheet, making an edge around the edge like you would a pie crust . It will be very sticky; sprinkle the dough and your hands lightly with flour. Bake for 15 minutes, until the crust is set but not browned. Allow to cool.
For the topping, combine
the butter, corn syrup, and brown sugar in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook over low heat until the butter is melted, using a wooden spoon to stir. Raise the heat and boil for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the heavy cream and pecans. Pour over the crust, trying not to get the filling between the crust and the pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the filling is set. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold. Cut into bars and serve.
Preheat oven to 160C/320F. Grease and line the base only of a 23cm / 9″ tart tin with a loose base. (Or a springform pan of a similar size)
Roughly break up biscuits and place in a food processor, then whizz until fine crumbs form. Or do this step with a ziplock bag and rolling pin.
Pour crumbs into a bowl, add melted butter, mix until it looks like wet sand and no dry crumbs remain. Pour into tin, then press firmly into base and sides – use something flat like a cup to assist (refer to video).
Transfer to tray (safe handling), place in oven and bake for 10 minutes, then remove and cool slightly (5 minutes in fridge).
Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add sugar and whisk to combine – butter may not incorporate fully.
Once it starts bubbling and the sugar is completely melted, pour in the condensed milk, whisking as you go. Whisk constantly until you see steam coming off the caramel (~ 4 minutes), then remove from heat.
Add salt (adjust to taste), then pour the caramel into the tart base.
Bake for 15 minutes or until the edges of the caramel surface is golden and the surface has a “skin” on it, but the caramel is still soft and the centre jiggles slightly (see video for demo.)
Cool on counter while you make the chocolate.
Place cream and chocolate in a heat proof bowl. Microwave in 2 x 30 second bursts, stirring in between, until smooth.
Set aside for 10 minutes to thicken slightly, then pour over the base. Smooth top or make swirls like I did (just wait until the chocolate thickens slightly). Sprinkle with sea salt flakes.
Refrigerate for 1 ½ hours to allow chocolate to set. Then remove and bring to room temperature before slicing to serve. Handle carefully when sliding the tart off the base – or just leave it on to be safe and just remove the sides.
1. You need about 2 cups once crushed. No need to be exact here, the crumb crust is fairly forgiving so just eyeball the weight based on the whole biscuit packet weight.
Another biscuit that is terrific to use for a biscuit crust is Digestives which is very popular in the UK/Europe and also quite popular here in Australia. If you use Digestives, reduce the butter to 75g because they are more buttery than Marie Crackers and Graham Crackers.
Other biscuits: Basically any plain biscuit works great like Arnott’s Arrowroot works great, and even flavoured ones like Gingernut. The dense sticky filling of this tart makes the crumb crust quite strong so it’s fairly forgiving re: biscuit and butter quantities.
2. STORAGE – This tart keeps SO WELL! It will keep in an airtight container for a week and still taste like it was made yesterday albeit the crust on the edge does soften a bit, but most people wouldn’t even notice (I don’t think). If it’s super hot where you are i.e. the chocolate becomes melty, keep it in the fridge but always bring to room temperature before serving otherwise the caramel won’t be creamy. It also freezes great – again, bring to room temp before serving. I’ve only frozen it for a couple of weeks but see no reason why it wouldn’t keep for sever
3. This is a VERY rich tart. I find that when cut into 12 (so quarters, then each quarter into 3), a slice is too much for me. So I have said that this serves 14 to 16. The nutrition is for 14 servings.
3 bananas, mashed
1 ½ cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)
½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted
3 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
⅓ cup milk
Preheat oven to 375°F and grease a 9×13-inch baking dish or line with parchment paper.
Mash bananas until just smooth. Add cinnamon and stir until well blended.
In a large bowl, beat sugar, butter, sour cream, and eggs until creamy. Add vanilla extract and mashed bananas.
In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet in 3 small batches. Optional: fold in chopped walnuts.
Pour batter into baking dish, spreading evenly, and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven to cool slightly.
In large sauce pan, melt butter until just golden brown in color.
Whisk in powdered sugar one cup at a time, followed by vanilla and milk.
Once mixture has come together and thickened, pour warm frosting over top of banana brownies, using a spatula to spread evenly over the top. Cool completely before cutting into squares to serve.
1 ( 29 oz.) can sliced peaches, drained well
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. table salt
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, cubed and cold
1 cup heavy cream
cinnamon and sugar (for sprinkling on top)
Preheat oven to 375F degrees
Spray an 8 x 8 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
Drain your can of peaches.
Pour drained peaches into bottom of baking dish (spreading them out evenly).
Sprinkle peaches with a little cinnamon or cinnamon sugar mixture.
For the topping, in a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
Then add in the cubed butter.
Begin to “cut” it into the flour mixture.
You can use a pastry cutter. Or better yet, use your fingers. Just work it in with the flour until it becomes small pebbles and has been worked in with the flour/sugar mixture.
Then pour in heavy cream.
Combine until all the flour mixture has become moist. It will be very thick.
Using a spoon, begin plopping the topping all over the peaches. Just put it on in clumps. Doing your best to cover the peaches. Don’t worry about smoothing it out.
Sprinkle the top with sugar or a cinnamon/sugar mixture. (the cinnamon will make the topping appear darker as it cooks.)
Bake for about 40 minutes.
Top will be golden brown, and you can stick a toothpick in the top to make sure the topping has completely baked through (toothpick should come out clean).
I made this with fresh peaches and frozen blueberries. It took about 47 min in the oven.
To make this with fresh peaches, you’ll need about 6 peaches, sliced.
Combine sliced peaches with 3 tbsp. all-purpose flour since fresh peaches will produce a lot of juice. Then continue with above steps.
To make cinnamon sugar, combine 2 tbsp. granulated sugar with 1 tsp. ground cinnamon.
two 10-ounce cans solid albacore tuna packed in olive oil, drained
2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup heavy cream
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
6 anchovy fillets, drained
3 tablespoons capers, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons minced capers
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
1/4 cup finely chopped celery rib
Toast or crackers, for servingLine a 7 1/2-by-3 1/2-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap, leaving plenty of overhang. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the tuna, butter, cream, lemon zest, lemon juice, cayenne, anchovies and the 3 tablespoons of capers. Season with salt and pepper and process until smooth. Scrape the puree into the loaf pan and smooth the top. Cover with the overhanging pieces of plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 8 hours or overnight.In a small bowl, stir the 2 tablespoons of minced capers with the parsley and celery and set aside. Unwrap and unmold the pate; onto a serving dish and sprinkle the parsley mixture on top. Serve chilled with toast or crackers.
1teaspoon flaky vanilla salt (regular flaky salt is fine, too)
1 1/2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
1 1/2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
In a saucepan, combine the cream, syrup, sugar, and cocoa powder. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and let simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the chocolate, butter, salt, and vanilla. Once the chocolate and the butter have melted, strain the entire mixture to ensure that no pesky cocoa powder clumps remain.
Let cool to room temperature. If you are making this in advance, refrigerate until ready to use and then gently reheat on the stove or in the microwave until the hot fudge is pourable. Store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
For the salty sprinkles: Combine everything in a small bowl and mix well. Store in a small jar and sprinkle on ice cream, sugar cookies just before baking, puddings, hot cocoa, milkshakes, etc.