Easy Brazilian cheese bread (Pao de Queijo)

Easy Brazilian cheese bread (Pao de Queijo)

JD’s version of another wonderful easy recipe from a rock star of a food photographer, my idol Katie Quinn Davies of What Katie Ate.  The main and most important ingredient is tapioca starch which you can easily find in Asian stores. If you want to make gluten-free cheese bread, you’d love Katie’s Pao de queijo recipe!

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Simple joy #11 JD baked this! Easy savoury beer bread

Easy savoury beer bread
Easy savoury beer bread

I have a funny story to tell. I found an old parchment of America’s Declaration of Independence from a Goodwill store in Portland, Oregon. I thought it would be a good table prop so I asked my loving partner-in-crime JD to bring it to Wellington since I couldn’t fit it in my luggage at that time. This weekend I found a reason to finally use it. JD, who is an American, baked bread for the first time in his entire life! Alas, he is free to make his own bread from this day forward!

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Sweet Potato and Fennel Gratin

Sweet potato and fennel gratin

The Food Network Channel can be addictive. It’s a good thing I don’t have a television set! I never knew who Ina Garten was until I saw The Barefoot Contessa on TV while housesitting for friends in Portland, Oregon.

Ina’s potato-fennel gratin stuck to mind because it was so easy to make. You can prepare it ahead of time, keep it in the fridge then bake it when you’re ready. Which was exactly what I did on several occasions. I adapted her recipe and used what was available: parsnip instead of fennel and for this recipe, sweet potato instead of plain boring potato. The result is that extra sweetness that makes this an ideal companion to the roast turkey for Thanksgiving dinner. Not that we celebrate Thanksgiving here in Kiwiland. But there is a lot to be thankful for. Every day that we are alive should be Thanksgiving Day.

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“Clean-out-the-fridge” challenge

Creamy squash soup, leeks and broccoli pie
Creamy squash soup, leeks and broccoli pie

A COUPLE OF WEEKS AGO, I challenged Seana from Cottage Grove House and Sandra from Please Pass The Recipe to come up with a recipe based on left-overs and anything we could find in the fridge that need to be thrown out soon. We called this “Clean-out-the-fridge challenge”. I like to avoid the term “cook off challenge” because it would make it a competition which it is not. This is mainly a fun way to share recipes based on a theme. I picked up a lot of tips from Sandra’s blog because she’s a master in the kitchen and Seana always uses the freshest ingredients that makes me jealous! Well, this time we used almost stale ingredients so check out their blogs to see what they have come up with.

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Can’t get enough mushrooms

Baked portobello mushrooms topped with feta, walnuts, sour cream, pesto, tomatoes, mint leaves
Baked portobello mushrooms topped with feta, walnuts, sour cream, pesto, tomatoes, mint leaves

MUSHROOMS AGAIN? I know! I just posted a mushroom recipe two weeks ago. This is the same recipe. Except that it got fancier with the added walnuts and mint leaves and more pesto. The nuts made a lot of difference. Walnuts and mushrooms are like husband and wife. They are meant to be together.

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Baked portobello mushrooms with herbed tomatoes, sour cream, feta and parmesan

Baked mushrooms with herbed tomatoes and sour cream
Baked mushrooms with herbed tomatoes and sour cream

IT’S ONE OF THOSE DAYS when an inspiration struck and you knew you just have to do it. Ahem, actually I was just cleaning out my fridge before stuff go beyond their expiration date.

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