Recipe: Lasagna

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Homemade lasagna! With cottage, mozzarella, Cheddar cheese, finished in 3 tomato sauces topped with salami.

Ingredients:

.    454 grams sweet Italian sausage

.    340 grams lean ground beef

.    1/2 cup minced onion

.    2 cloves garlic, crushed

.    1 (794 grams) can crushed tomatoes

.    2 (170 grams) cans tomato paste

.    2 (184 grams) cans canned tomato sauce

.    1/2 cup water

.    2 tablespoons white sugar

.    1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves

.    1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds

.    1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

.    1 tablespoon salt

.    1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

.    4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

.    12 lasagna noodles

.    454 grams ricotta cheese

.    1 egg

.    1/2 teaspoon salt

.    340 grams pound mozzarella cheese, sliced

.    3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  4. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Recipe: Pavlova

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Pavlova! Traditional meringue topped with vanilla cream, finished with strawberry, raspberry, blueberry drizzled in glazed strawberry syrup. Not to forget the sprinkle of granadilla.

Ingredients:

  • 6 (59g) eggs, separated
  • 1 1/4 cups (270g) caster sugar
  • 2 tsp cornflour
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 300ml thickened cream
  • 2 tbs icing sugar mixture, sifted
  • Finely shredded rind and juice of 2 limes
  • strawberries, raspberries and blueberries
  • strawberry syrup
  • Pulp of 2-3 granadilla

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 120°C. Line an oven tray with foil. Brush with melted butter and dust with cornflour, shaking off excess. Mark a 24cm-diameter circle on foil.
  2. Use an electric mixer to whisk egg whites in a clean dry bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition, until meringue is thick and glossy and sugar dissolved. Rub a little meringue between fingers. If still “gritty” with sugar, continue to whisk until sugar dissolves. Add cornflour, vinegar and vanilla and whisk until just combined. Spoon meringue onto the foil, using the marked circle as a guide. Smooth sides and top of pavlova. Use a small spatula to forms little peaks around edge of pavlova. Bake in oven for 11/2 hours or until pavlova is dry to the touch. Turn off oven. Leave pavlova in oven with the door ajar to cool completely. When completely cold, transfer to serving plate or store in an airtight container until required.
  3. Use an electric mixer to whisk the cream and icing sugar in a medium bowl until firm peaks form. Spoon cream onto the top of pavlova. Pour lime juice into a ceramic or glass bowl. Add banana slices and toss to coat with juice. Drain. Decorate pavlova with banana, strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. Sprinkle strawberry syrup and granadilla.

Recipe: Mascarpone Cheese Mousse Cake

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Ingredients – Filling:

  • 454 grams of cream cheese stored at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 5 large eggs stored at room temperature
  • 454 grams of mascarpone stored at room temperature

Ingredients – Crust:

  • a box of Italian sugar finger biscuits
  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoon sugar (optional, depending on how sweet you would like your crust)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees. Combine crumbs, butter and sugar and stir together. Press mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch round springform pan and bake for about 10 minutes. Cool completely.
  2. Change the oven heat to 160 degrees and get out a large roasting pan that will fit the springform pan. Cover the sides and bottom of the springform pan very, very well with aluminum foil.
  3. In a food processor, blend sugar and cream cheese until smooth. Add in vanilla extract and the eggs, one at a time, until blended and smooth. Add in mascarpone and process again.
  4. Pour into the crust and place in roasting pan. Place the pan in the oven and fill halfway up the sides of the springform with warm water. Bake for 55 minutes at 160 degrees.
  5. Thereafter, turn off the oven and leave the cake inside for 20-30 minutes, until the center just seems set but will still ripple when the pan is jiggled (I left mine in for a bit longer, about 35 minutes, since it seemed a bit loose).
  6. Remove from water bath and cool compeletely on a wire rack.
  7. Gently place Italian sugar finger biscuits on the outer edges of the cheese mousse cake.
  8. When it has cooled, refrigerate overnight or until cold, before serving.