PAY DAY PICK / MISS DIOR SCENT COLLECTION

Posted on 27 April 2015

Miss Dior Scents Collection
Pay day comes around and we all know this is when the shopping tingling starts getting stronger. This month I have Miss Dior's Scent Collection, which includes small bottles of Miss Dior Eau Fraîche, Miss Dior Eau de Toilette, Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet and Miss Dior Eau de Parfum.

JOANA COOKS: VEGETARIAN SPRING ROLLS AND TOMATO SOUP

Posted on 24 April 2015

Vegetarian Spring Rolls and Tomato Soup
Sometimes I find myself craving a little je ne sais quoi, and this time it was a hint of the Orient that was missing in my day. As I hunted in my fridge for something to eat, I realised I had a few stir-fry-perfect veggies. With some spinach, carrots, onions and peppers, I could gather enough to make vegetarian spring rolls. I washed the veggies, sliced everything very finely and seasoned them with salt, cayenne pepper and soy sauce. I left them to marinate while I prepared the tomato soup.
Às vezes dou por mim a morrer de vontade de comer um certo je ne sais quoi, e desta vez era um pedaço do Oriente que faltava no meu dia. Enquanto procurava no frigorífico qualquer coisa para comer, apercebi-me que tinha vegetais perfeitinhos para stir-fry. Com alguns espinafres, cenouras, cebolas e pimentos consegui juntar o suficiente para fazer crepes chineses vegetarianos. Lavei os vegetais, fatiei tudo muito fininho e temperei com sal, pimenta cayenne e molho de soja. Deixei-os a marinar enquanto preparava a sopa de tomate.

Cayenne Pepper

Now it's confession time. This tomato soup was actually store-bought. I'm addicted to Knorr's Tomato Soup and while I was in Portugal I bought a few packets and have been slowly using them when I feel like a creamy tomato soup. It's just so good that I haven't dared making one from scratch, and instead have relied on the few packets I brought with me. Shame on me, I know!
Agora é tempo da confissão. Esta sopa de tomate é de loja. Sou viciada na Sopa de Tomate da Knorr, e quando estive em Portugal aproveitei e comprei alguns pacotes, que tenho estado a usar lentamente quando me dá a vontade de ter uma sopa de tomate cremosa. É que é tão bom que nem me atrevi até hoje a fazer sopa do zero. Em vez disso uso os pacotes que trouxe comigo. Devia ter vergonha, eu sei!

Vegetarian Spring Rolls and Tomato Soup
The soup is so easy to make though. All you have to do is boil a litre of water, and when it's hot, whisk in the whole packet of powdered soup. Whisk, whisk, whisk. Very important, so there's no lumps. Let it cook for 5 minutes. I always make my tomato soup with poached eggs, which I make by simply whisking the soup and then dropping each egg (I put two) at a time and let it cook for 5-8 minute depending on how cooked you want the egg to be.

While the soup was cooking, I stir-fry the veggies with a bit of sunflower oil. I only fry them for about 3 minutes. Then I place a small quantity of veggies in each filo pastry wrapper (which I buy at Asian supermarkets), fold and close off with eggwash. I then bake them in the oven at 200ºC for 12 minutes, until golden.
A sopa é tão fácil de fazer e as instruções são super simples. Eu normalmente cozinho a minha com ovos escalfados. 
Enquanto a sopa cozinha, eu fiz o stir-fry com um pouco de óleo de girassol. Fritei apenas durante cerca de 3 minutos, já que os crepes ainda vão ao forno. Depois pus uma pequena quantidade da mistura em cada wrap de massa filo (que compro em supermercados asiáticos), dobro e fecho com eggwash. Depois ponho-os no forno previamente aquecido a 200ºC durante 12 minutos, até que os crepes fiquem dourados.

SPECIAL MOMENTS / AFTERNOON TEA WITH APPLE CAKE

Posted on 22 April 2015

Afternoon Tea
Sometimes all it takes is a moment of laughter and peaceful camaraderie. A piece of cake and some Earl Grey tea, and you're...happy. Over the weekend I had a shared moment like that.

One of my flatmates noticed she had some apples that were on the verge of going bad. Not wanting to waste them, she decided to bake an apple cake and we all got to enjoy it. I did so with a cup of Earl Grey with a dash of milk, they drank Green tea and hot chocolate. It was delicious.

Às vezes tudo o que é preciso é um momento de riso e calma camaradagem. Um pedaço de bolo e chá Earl Grey e és...feliz. Durante o fim de semana tive um momento assim partilhado. Uma das minhas 'flatmates' reparou que tinha algumas maçãs prestes a ir para a cova. Não querendo desperdiçá-las, decidiu fazer um bolo de maçã e todas nós tirámos proveito. Eu comi uma fatia com uma caneca de Earl Grey, com um pouco de leite, e elas beberam chá verde e chocolate quente. Estava delicioso!

Afternoon Tea


Ingredients
4 apples
180g of plain flour
8g of baking powder
2 eggs
100g of sugar
175ml of milk
1tbsp of butter
Extra flour to dust
Your choice of jam

Step by Step
Pre-heat the oven at 180ºC.
Peel and chop 2 apples and mix them with the flour, the baking powder, the eggs, the sugar and the milk in the blender. Let it blend until it becomes a homogenous mixture.
Rub the mold with butter and then dust some flour on top.
Put the dough in the mold.
Peel the other 2 apples, dice them in slices and cover the tart with them.
Put them in the oven for 45 minutes.
After taking it from the over let it cool down for a bit so that it separates from the mold.

The final touch
With a pastry brush, glaze the surface with your chosen marmalade.
Then serve - goes well with a dollop of whipped cream and some hot tea.

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