Taste the rainbow.
Sneak some vegetables into your diet using the vehicle of pizza.
Anything tastes good if you add a bomb tomato sauce, cheese, and carbs to it. AND I added some roasted garlic as well, so you get that earthy rich undertone.
And you know it’s healthy if there’s loads of colours in it.
The base is a sourdough pizza, which is supposedly easier to digest (don’t ask me how). It also lends a tangy note to the dough, adds a little something to the flavour profile.
(Just watch me photoshop out my messy kitchen)
I got the idea for the rainbow pizza from here, and used the same pizza dough recipe as my previous sourdough pizza. The recipe for the pizza dough gives a really crunchy pizza that’s not too heavy.
Ingredients (makes 1 medium thin crust pizza)
- 1/2 cup sourdough starter (mine was 100% hydration, see notes)
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 150g all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp instant yeast
- 1 red pepper
- 1 orange pepper
- 1 yellow pepper
- 1 head broccoli
- 1 red onion
- About 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 package chopped tomatoes (about 390g)
- 1 white onion
- Splash of red wine (I used Merlot)
- Pinch of sugar
- 1 medium bulb of garlic
- 1 tsp mixed herbs
- Mix the sourdough starter with the water, flour, salt, and yeast (make sure the salt and yeast are placed at opposite ends of the bowl).
- Knead until smooth and elastic. Grease the ball of dough and place in a greased container.
- Cover the container with cling film and leave to rise until doubled in size, about 2-4 hours.
- While your dough is rising, cut up the peppers and red onion into strips. Cut the broccoli into florets.
- Bake the vegetables for 15 mins at 180°C just to get it partially cooked.
- Break off half of the garlic bulb, leaving the cloves in their skins. Cover in foil and bake at 180°C for 30 mins to caramelise it.
- Chop the white onion up into small pieces and fry over medium heat until softened.
- Add the remaining half of the garlic bulb (chopped), and fry until aromatic.
- Add the package chopped tomato and a pinch of sugar. Add the mixed herbs.
- Add a splash of red wine. Cook over low-medium heat until sauce is reduced to desired consistency (not too liquidy basically).
- Season to taste.
- When your dough has risen, coat a pan with olive oil. Flatten the dough onto the pan. Cover, and let rest for 15 mins. It will start to shrink back a little, just press the dough to the edges of the pan again.
- Preheat your oven to 230°C. Bake the crust for 4-5 mins.
- Smush the roasted garlic onto the baked crust. Top with the tomato sauce. Then top with the cheese. Then arrange your vegetables on top of the cheese layer in a rainbow pattern.
- Bake for an additional 8-10 mins or until the toppings are done as you like.
- Remove from the oven and loosen the edges of the pizza with a knife. Carefully lift it onto a cooling rack to keep the bottom crisp. Or you could just eat it straight away from the pan.
- 100% hydration means my starter was equal parts flour and water by weight.
- To see how I started my sourdough starter, see this post.
- Avoid putting the cheese too close to the edges to avoid sticking the pizza to the pan.
Quick little sourdough!
This was the first sourdough I made using Sally (my sourdough starter) after her summer hibernation. And man was I nervous.
I had to revive Sally because she had a little layer of mould growing on her. Ended up just scraping the mould off, splitting what was left into 5 bowls, and cultivating the bowl that smelt the…least-worst.
Really happy with the bread I ended up with though! Got a good structure on the bread – check out the way the bottom of the bread’s lifted off the ground. Read somewhere that that means I shaped the bread pretty well.
Didn’t manage to score the bread successfully though. 😦
The flavour of the bread’s pretty good as well. Can’t go wrong with salty cheese, roasted tomatoes, and aromatic herbs. The gouda was from the Farmers Market too (supporting the local community wow) and was reaaaaally good.
I got my recipe from here.
- 217g sourdough starter (mine was at 100% hydration)
- 258g bread flour
- 43g rye flour
- 190g water
- 7g salt
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- 50g gouda
- 50g parmesan
- 50g sundried tomatoes
- Combine the sourdough starter with the flours and water. Leave to autolyse for about 30 mins.
- Cut cheese and tomatoes into small pieces.
- Add the salt to the dough mixture and knead briefly for about 5 mins. Then add the dried rosemary and knead again until some structure develops.
- Add the cut cheese and tomatoes to the dough and mix to incorporate.
- Place the dough in an oiled container and cover. Leave to rise for about 40 mins.
- Turn and fold. Learn how to do so here. Leave for 40 mins. Then turn and fold again. You’re going to want to aim to fold 3 times in 40 minute intervals.
- Shape, and if using a banneton place the bread in the banneton and cover with cling film. Leave to proof for at least 12 hours in the fridge.
- The next day, tip the bread onto a lined baking tray.
- Preheat your oven to 260°C with a baking tray half-filled with water at the bottom of the oven to create a steam oven.
- Score your bread and place in the steam oven. Spray into the oven with mist from a spray bottle generously to generate more steam. Bake at 260°C for 20 mins. Then reduce the temperature to 200°C and bake for 20 mins or until done.
- Bread is done when it is well browned and when you tap it it sounds hollow.
- Leave to cool on a wire rack.
- My starter was at 100% hydration. This bread was about 73% hydration. If you have no idea what I’m talking about check out my previous recipe on classic white sourdough.
- Autolysing just means letting your flour sit with the water before you add any salt or yeast. This is supposed to make the bread easier to handle and have better structure and taste since the flour absorbs the water or something. More here.
- I used grana padano instead of parmesan because it happened to be cheaper. Works too.
This is a visually impressive cheesecake that is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
It all starts off with a really easy to make brownie recipe.
Then you get to the cheesecake which is also one of those one-bowl affairs with little clean-up and fuss.
Together, they make an arresting cheesecake which promises velvety chocolate nestled in a creamy cheesecake bed. The whole thing is then topped off with bittersweet chocolate and a crunchy, buttery base, adding textural and flavour contrast.
Honestly speaking though, I felt that this cheesecake did not live up to its appearance. Sure, it was a pretty decent cheesecake, but its taste did not have the wow factor that I expected. Of course, this could be down to the alterations I made to the recipe (see notes), so feel free to follow the original recipe down to the tee (although I think my alterations were not the reason why I did not like the recipe since my alterations were pretty minor and did not affect the parts I didn’t like).
Still, it’s an easy recipe (for its nature) that yields a pretty cake with a satisfactory taste. The brownie texture matched the cheesecake’s pretty well, so the whole cake was overall pretty harmonious.
I got this recipe from Smitten Kitchen.
Ingredients (makes an 8″ cake)
- 113g unsweetened chocolate/baking chocolate (4 ounces)
- 170g unsalted butter (3/4 cup)
- 350g granulated sugar (1 3/4 cup)
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 125g flour (1 cup)
Crumb crust (see notes)
- 284g finely ground cookies of your choice, I used chocolate digestives (10 ounces)
- 142g unsalted butter, melted (10 tbsp)
- 134g sugar (2/3 cup)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3 package cream cheese, softened (each packet being 227g or 8 ounces)
- 4 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 200g sugar (1 cup)
- 2 cups brownie cubes (I definitely used more than this though)
- 85g bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped (3 ounces)
- 56.7g butter (2 ounces)
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- Melt the chocolate and butter either in a microwave or over a double boiler until the butter is melted. Stir in sugar. Then blend in the eggs and vanilla. Then stir in the flour and salt.
- Butter and line a pan and pour the mixture in.
- Bake at 180°C for 30-35 mins (press the surface and it should spring back. The toothpick test will not work here since the insides are pretty gooey even when it is done).
- Refrigerate the brownies (if you want; it’s easier to cut when it’s cold) and cube into 3/4 to 1 inch squares.
- Stir together and press onto the bottom and up the sides of a buttered springform pan (see notes).
- Beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Add vanilla and sugar, beating until well incorporated.
- Fold in the brownie cubes gently.
- Pour into the crust shell and bake at 180°C for 45 mins, or until when you shake it, it jiggles slightly in the middle (and is set about 1 inch from the edge).
- Let cool in the tin at room temperature. When it is cool to the touch, refrigerate the cheesecake.
- Heat the butter and the cream in a saucepan until the cream just reaches boiling. Take the cream off the heat.
- Pour the hot cream into a bowl containing the chocolate and let sit for a minute. Then stir the whole thing together.
- Add the extract and stir.
- Spread ganache over the cheesecake when still warm.
- Decorate with leftover brownies and random cookie crumbs that fell off and extra ganache.
- Chill cake until ready to serve.
- I really did not like the cookie base I ended up with in this recipe. This could be down to my choice of cookies, since the original recommended chocolate wafers or chocolate teddy grahams and I used chocolate digestives. What I ended up with was waaaaay too oily and crumbly. I recommend very gradually adding your butter until you get the right consistency. Also, I omitted the sugar when making the crust since the cookies were already so sweet.
- When folding the brownie cubes into the cheesecake, just use as many brownie cubes as you want, man. 2 cups is too little (though this could be down to my sucky volume measuring skills. HOW do you measure the volume of uneven objects)
- You WILL end up with extra brownies but is that really a bad thing?
- All the sugar used here is granulated sugar, not caster sugar (which could affect your recipe if you’re measuring by volume)
- I reduced the sugar by 30g for the brownies and 20g for the cheesecake and it turned out fine.
- Don’t worry about baking this cake in a water bath since the chocolate ganache is going to cover your lovingly cultivated crackless top. If you’re the type that gets bothered by cracks, I made this cake and didn’t get a crack in my cheesecake anyway.
- I thought putting the crumbs up the side made the cake really ugly, but that could be down to my personal preference and my (lack of) technique.
The sweetness of the roasted vegetables just marry together with the enriched bread perfectly in this recipe.
I used the same base dough recipe as the sun-dried tomatoes, basil, and cheese bread recipe I made about a month ago.
This time I learnt from my mistake and spread the filling across the whole dough before rolling it up.
I baked this bread for a party so I couldn’t get a good crumb shot. I got loads of compliments though! I mean look at it with the filling just spilling out of the dough, like a cornucopia of plenty.
It tastes good too! I mean, if you like roasted peppers, onions and cheese you’re going to like this. The bread itself is a great enriched bread recipe, not too rich but very moreish.
Ingredients (makes 1 loaf)
- 1/4 cup warm water (56g)
- 1/8 cup sugar (25g)
- 2 tsp instant yeast
- 1/2 cup warm, low-fat milk (113g)
- 1/6 cup extra-virgin olive oil (33g)
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 cups bread flour (361g)
- 1 red pepper
- 1 yellow pepper
- 1 red onion
- 80g shredded cheese of your choice (I used a mix of cheddar and mozzarella)
- Garlic powder (optional)
- Dried rosemary (optional)
- Combine water, sugar, yeast, milk, olive oil, eggs, salt, and flour together in a bowl. Knead until you get a smooth elastic dough, about 10 mins.
- Grease the surface of the dough ball and place in a covered large bowl until doubled in size (about 1h)
- Meanwhile, roast the red pepper, yellow pepper, and red onion for 30 mins at 200°C, or until softened. Let cool.
- When the dough has doubled in size, knock back the dough. Tip out onto a well floured surface. Roll it into a big rectangle (about 22″ by 8.5″ in size) using a well-floured rolling pin.
- Distribute the vegetables, cheese, garlic powder, and dried rosemary over the surface. Roll it from the long edge, so you get a long sausage. Pinch edges to seal and place the seam side down.
- Using kitchen shears, cut the dough 1/2″ from each end and 1″ deep.
- Shape the bread into an S shape, tucking the ends under the middle of the bread so you get an 8 shape.
- Let the bread rise for 45-60 mins, or until roughly doubled in size.
- Bake at 180°C for 35-40 mins. Tent the loaf with foil after 15-20 mins to prevent over-browning.
- Cool the bread completely on a wire rack.
- The filling of my bread was spilling out so much because I used a lot more cheese since I’m trying to finish the one I had in my fridge. If you want your dough to be a bit neater be a bit more sparing with the filling.
- It is more important to follow how your bread looks like (eg let bread rise until double in size) rather than the timing, since that is very dependant on many variables like temperature.
- The edges of my bread was really brown since I tore out a really stingy piece of foil to tent my bread. Student budget. Still tasted alright.
This bread tastes amazing and can be made under one hour.
So I found out at 6pm today that I had agreed to go to a potluck that night. Which started at 7.30pm. I needed something that I could churn out in an hour with ingredients I had around the house and I immediately went: Soda Bread.
Soda bread is a quickbread, and uses baking soda as a raising agent instead of yeast. The baking soda reacts with the acidity of the buttermilk to produce bubbles, which gives the rise.
The lovely ‘X’ pattern is supposed to let the devil out of the bread. So I did it. Because nobody wants the devil in their bread. (But really it’s just to help the bread cook evenly).
The smell of this bread was a-ma-zing. I had to carry this bread through the 30 mins walk from my house to the place of the potluck and every single passer-by did a double take when I passed by them. I basically had bread perfume. My friend thought it smelled a lot like chicken pie while I thought it smelled like French onion soup.
Anyway this bread smells and tastes delicious. It had a soft and tender crumb with a crunchy crust. Best of all, from start to finish it only takes 1 hour, so I really encourage you to try it!
I got this recipe from Paul Hollywood.
- 250g plain flour
- 250g plain wholemeal flour
- 1 tsp baking soda/bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 400ml buttermilk
- Two onions, finely diced (raw)
- 200g cheese (I used cheddar)
- About 1 tbsp dried thyme (optional)
- About 1 tbsp dried rosemary (optional)
- In a large bowl, mix together the two flours, baking soda, salt, onion, cheese, and dried herbs.
- Make a well in the center and add half the buttermilk. Use a wooden spoon to mix the dry ingredients into the buttermilk. Slowly add the rest of the buttermilk and mix until you get a sticky dough which can hold together. You might not need all the buttermilk.
- Transfer to a well-floured work surface and form into a ball. DO NOT KNEAD or your bread will taste tough and not tender.
- Transfer onto a lined baking sheet and dust a layer of flour on top. Sprinkle some dried thyme/rosemary on top if you want as well.
- Using a bench scraper (or a serrated knife), score the dough with a deep cross, cutting all the way down to the baking sheet.
- Sprinkle the top of the bread with a bit of flour and bake at 200°C for 30 mins, or until golden brown.
- Let cool on a wire rack, and try to eat on the day itself.
- I didn’t have any buttermilk so I substituted using a mixture of 3/4 natural yoghurt and 1/4 water. You get the same result, don’t worry (I have tried this recipe using buttermilk before).
- If you want to go to the other end of the bread-time spectrum, check out my sourdoughs, which usually take more than half a day to make but yields an intensely bready flavour.