Thursday, 30 April 2015

zingy coconut and lime macaroons

Zingy coconut and lime macaroons on a platter.

There are many coconut macaroon recipes on the Internet, and here I am, adding one more to the fray. These coconut and lime macaroons came about because I wanted to make something that feels light in both texture and taste, something that's not too sweet. Something that may, perhaps, surprise you with its charm.

Lime juice and lime zest in coconut macaroons makes them nice and tangy!

I use unsweetened shredded coconut along with a modest amount of sugar, and incorporate lime juice and lime zest to give the coconut macaroons some extra zing. I also bind the shredded coconut with a fairly minimal amount of egg white. This did make them slightly challenging to assemble, and I was wondering if the mixture would come together at all, but the resulting bite-sized lime and coconut macaroons stayed intact in their construction, though you do need to handle them with care, as they might be a little fragile. They are also crisp and tangy, and pretty delicious, too!

Shape your lime and coconut macaroons into cute little domes, and bake them till they're golden brown and crunchy.

zingy coconut-lime macaroons
(makes approximately 22 dainty macaroons)

1 egg white
1/4 cup caster sugar / superfine sugar
2 teaspoons lime juice
1 teaspoon lime zest
1 pinch of salt
1 cup shredded coconut (unsweetened)

Whisk egg white, sugar, lime juice, lime zest and salt until the sugar completely dissolves and the mixture is foamy. Stir in shredded coconut and thoroughly mix everything together.

Set the oven to 140°C / 285°F fan-forced or 160°C / 320°F conventional.

Line baking sheets with baking paper. Stir the mixture thoroughly again, then drop heaped teaspoonfuls of the coconut mixture onto the baking sheet and shape each dollop into little domes.
(These coconut macaroons don't spread so you don't have to leave much space in between, though some space helps when you're shaping each portion on the baking sheet. I left about 2 - 3 centimetres or 1 inch space in between each macaroon.)
Bake the macaroons for 15 - 20 minutes or until they develop a crisp, golden appearance and the bottoms are dry.
Allow your coconut and lime macaroons to cool completely before storing them. They should keep in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator for at least a few days.

These coconut and lime macaroons taste so light, they'll be all gone before you know it!

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Friday, 24 April 2015

$2 taco tuesdays at the belasyse, perth cbd

Belasyse Bar and Restaurant, Perth CBD.

We were intending to meet up with friends for $2 Taco Tuesdays at the Belasyse, but it was only upon our arrival that we found out that our little social gathering had been cancelled. Oops. Well, we decided to hang around and try the tacos anyway.

The taco bonanza starts from 6pm on Tuesdays, apparently, and all we had to do was to purchase a drink each to make ourselves eligible for a taco-ordering-frenzy. We kept calm, though, and ordered two of each taco from a menu of five options (all gluten-free).

The options were:

Fish, cabbage salad, Baja sauce, chipotle
Chicken, guacamole, lettuce
Black beans, tomato, cheese, coriander (vegetarian)
Pulled pork, black beans, tomato, chipotle
Beef, cheese, black beans and tomato

The restaurant wasn't very busy. We were served quickly and the food came out quickly, too. As for the tacos themselves? The tortillas seemed to be a little on the dry side. The fillings were pleasant enough, but lacked some zing - perhaps more lime, chilli, or condiments could have elevated them. There is definitely potential here if they go bolder with the flavours.

The Belasyse has a pretty nice atmosphere with an easygoing courtyard area and a cozy indoors dining area. While I wasn't quite drawn in by this first visit, I'd be willing to try it again for a second time if my friends want to - and if they promise they'll show up! There are also half-price pizzas on Thursdays at the Belasyse, so that's an idea...

Tuesday tacos - fish taco at the Belasyse.

Tuesday tacos - pulled pork taco at the Belasyse.

Tuesday tacos - beef taco at the Belasyse.

The Belasyse on Urbanspoon

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Friday, 17 April 2015

a smoky, savoury apple salad

A smoky, savoury apple salad.

Another salad!

I promise the next post won't be a salad recipe, but for now, I hope you are tolerating (and even enjoying) my recent run of salads.

I'll put some of the responsibility/blame on Simon - I was chopping up apples the other day and had all the intentions of making an apple dessert. He insisted that he wanted a salad and I gave in. On the bright side, it's nice that he is trying (with some success) to lose weight. Plus, given my appreciation for fruits and vegetables, it is really quite a good thing to have a boyfriend who likes salads. Right? Right?

So here we go... a simple, savoury apple salad that I created on a whim. The apples provide sweetness while the green capsicum pleasantly counterbalances that with a hint of grassy bitterness. The tomatoes add juiciness, while the lime juice keeps everything fresh and tangy. Garlic, smoked paprika and coriander leaves impart piquant, aromatic touches. This salad is easy to make, and it's easy to eat, too.

Sweet, smoky and tangy flavours...

a smoky, savoury apple salad

1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tart/green apple
1 sweet/red apple (optional - include for a sweeter, fruitier salad; omit for a more savory salad)
1 green capsicum / bell pepper
6 cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup roughly chopped coriander leaves / cilantro (or substitute with flat-leaf parsley)

Mix lime juice, extra virgin olive oil, minced garlic, smoked paprika, cracked black pepper and salt in a salad bowl.
Chop apple(s) and capsicum into bite-sized pieces, discarding the stems, cores and seeds. Cut cherry tomatoes into quarters or sixths. Place the pieces of fruits and vegetables in the bowl. Add the coriander leaves.
Toss everything together to combine the ingredients. It's preferable to let the salad rest in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes to allow the flavours to mingle, and if you do so, toss the salad again just before serving.

Healthy apple salad. Also vegan and gluten-free!

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