Sunday, February 27, 2011

Daring Bakers-Panna Cotta and Florentine Cookies-Challenge #2

The February 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Mallory from A Sofa in the Kitchen. She chose to challenge everyone to make Panna Cotta from a Giada De Laurentiis recipe and Nestle Florentine Cookies.

I loved this challenge.  The Florentine cookies were easy and so tasty.  I ate more than my fair share of the batch. I will be making them again and again, now that I know they are simple and easy to make.

For the panna cotta, I decided to make a coconut and lime variation.  So, I adapted the provided recipe.  I was quite happy with the results.  Nice coconut flavor with a subtle lime flavor.  So yummy!!  Below is the recipe I used for the coconut lime panna cotta.

1 packet of unflavored powdered gelatin
2 cups Cream of Coconut
1 1/2 cups Coconut Milk
2 cups Heavy Cream
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
zest of two limes

Sprinkle the gelatin evenly over 3 tablespoons of cool water in a small bowl. Set aside to soften.  Heat the cream of coconut, coconut milk, and lime zest in a sauce pan until warm.  Remove from heat and stir in gelatin and heavy cream and stir until gelatin is dissolved.  Stir in fresh lime juice then pour into ramekins or glasses.  Chill until set 4 to 6 hours.

 Here are pictures of the finished panna cotta and Florentines.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Daring Cooks-Hiyashi Soba and Tempura-Challenge #1

The February 2011 Daring Cooks’ challenge was hosted by Lisa of Blueberry Girl. She challenged Daring Cooks to make Hiyashi Soba and Tempura. She has various sources for her challenge including,, and

I was excited to see this challenge as my first official Daring Cooks challenge.  I love all sorts of Asian food. One of my favorite dishes during a trip to South Korea in the summer of 2002 was a cold buckwheat noodles with a spicy sauce.  This dish brought back memories.  Even better, I had received a small home deep fat fryer as a Christmas gift and now I had a good reason to put it to use.

 I decided to make the spicy dressing for the noodles.  Next time, I will have to add some chili flakes or something because I did not find it that spicy at all.  For the tempura, we had shrimp, peapods, carrots, sesame leaves, shitake mushrooms, and blue potatoes.  My and my other half's favorites were the carrots and the potatoes.  I loved the color the potatoes added to the dish.  This dish was good enough the other half asked for it to be put into the regular rotation of dinners that I make. 

The recipes for the both the noodles and tempura can be found here at the Daring Kitchen website. And finally here is a pic of the noodles and tempura.