Product Reviews of tools meant to make your life a whole lot easier in the kitchen

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Apple Roses for Fall

We posted almost a month ago on FB that we’d be doing this recipe for you… and then Asma was unexpectedly swept off to Turkey for her Anniversary (may Allah bless you two always isA ameen :) ) – so well what can I say…

But the good news is we’ve been able to have our version of Apple Roses ready for you just in time for Thanksgiving!

So for those of you who haven’t seen the original:

Gorgeous and oh so simple, right? Well we’ve taken this recipe up a notch for you guys:

Deliciously Wholesome Apple Roses
Serves 6
This is a healthier version of the Tip Hero recipe. Beautiful apple roses made deliciously more wholesome with a few easy tweaks!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
55 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
55 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 apple, sliced
  2. 1/2 lime's juice
  3. 1 sheet of puff pastry
  4. 3 tsp ground flax
  5. 6 tsp St Dalfour Apricot Jam
  6. A sprinkle of cinnamon
  7. 1/4 cup of walnuts, chopped and divided into 6
  8. First cold pressed extra virgin oilve oil for greasing the pan
Instructions
  1. Cut apples in half, take out the core and then slice thinly using a mandolin slicer. Place slices in water with lime's juice. Flour and roll out pastry. Sprinkle with flax and then cut into 6 strips.
  2. For each strip: Sprinkle with cinnamon, apricot jelly, nuts. Place apple slices on the top edge of the pastry (see video) and roll. Place each rose in a greased cup cake tin. Bake at 375 for 35-45 min.
Notes
  1. The redder the apple the redder your apple rose will be.
  2. Each hearty rose is about 250 kcal and loaded with omega 3 fats thanks to the added flax and nuts.
  3. And now you know what our secret weapon is for getting perfect petals every time – A MANDOLIN SLICER. I think Asma said it best when she said “this is the best kitchen appliance in the world”.
Adapted from Tip Hero
Adapted from Tip Hero
Skinny Foodaholic http://www.ussmaghani.com/

HAPPY THANKSGIVING everyone!

Let us know what you think of our changes and if you try making these share your pics with us.

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Mmmmm… Carrot Cake

Basic Carrot CakeWe’ve been getting carrots in our organic box for the past few weeks, and thanks to the fact that both Imrana and I have braces – they aren’t the easiest thing to eat raw… so we’ve been coming up with creative ways to enjoy cooked carrots…

Which inevitably led to us digging out this Carrot Cake Recipe. Now as a child, I must admit, I’d walk right passed this humble cake and straight to the chocolate… but lately I’ve developed a love for the more subtle flavours of fruit (or in this case vegetable) based cakes.

Our Good Old Carrot Cake Recipe

We got a hold of this recipe way back when… from some obscure school cook book, but as simple as it is, it gets a five star rating from the family. In fact it happens to be Dad’s favourite!

The best part is it only takes a few minutes to throw together – grating the carrots is the only real time consumer. But thanks to our handy dandy Braun Hand Blender (did I mention I ABSOLUTELY love this little guy – but more on that later), even this takes no time at all!

So here’s what you’ll need:

 

Carrot Cake RecipeIngredients

Dry

1 1/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. each baking soda and powder
1 1/3 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 tsp. salt

Wet

1 cup raw sugar (turbinado)
1 cup EVOO (preferably first-cold pressed)
2 cups grated carrots (YAY for our Organic Box)
3 eggs

Procedure

Preheat oven to 350. In a small bowl beat all wet ingredients together adding eggs one at a time at the end. In a separate bowl, sift together dry ingredients and then fold in wet ingredients. Bake for 40-45 min in a loaf pan. Makes 16 slices (250 kcal)

On a side note, we ended up using our bread machine instead. It took a little bit longer to bake but we didn’t have to heat up the entire oven and since our bread machine mixes the batter for us, we could be SUPER LAZY carrot cake makers!

Don’t Forget the Icing

Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe - Carrot CakeBut hold on, everyone knows carrot cake is just not carrot cake without the cream cheese frosting!

Now I don’t know about you, but I always find that the icing is overly sweet on store bought carrot cakes. That’s why this recipe’s so great – you get to add just as much sweetness as you like!

Now here’s what you’ll need:

Ingredients

1 4-oz package light cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter
2 tsp. vanilla
icing sugar (we used about 2 tbsp…it was a bit sweet)

Procedure

Cream together cheese, butter and vanilla. Add icing sugar until soft enough to spread. Makes enough for 1 loaf of carrot cake – 16 slices (48 kcal).

On a cold day – OK cool day in our apartment – with a hot cup of orange ginger tea, this really hits the spot. ENJOY!

Mmmm Carrot Cake

Toastabags = Delicious Deli-Style Sandwiches in a Flash

How much do I love my TOASTABAGS? These guys are pure genius. I’ve never been a person to like cold sandwiches – give me a panini anyday! Now you can enjoy a deli style sandwich at home or at work without all the hassle! And that’s not all – I use my toastabags to warm up anything that I want to be nice and crispy including oven baked fries, pizza slices and even the occasional pastry – pretty much anything that would be disgustingly soggy in the microwave!

I bought my bags from ACE in Dubai, but you can buy them on Amazon for $9.99. They are definitely worth the price in my opinion. I say this mainly because it really makes planning lunches for work so much easier. When I have 5 minutes I can whip up a quick sandwich with veggies – something I would never dream of doing before due to the sogginess factor – and pop it in the toaster at work.

NOTE: Don’t assemble your sandwich until you are ready to eat it!

The Good Old Apple Slicer

It turns out that there may be more truth behind the saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”. In a review published by – Boyer and Liu (Nutrition Journal 2004, 3:5) apples have been shown to reduce the risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, asthma and diabetes. The fact that they are reasonably inexpensive and readily available definitely makes them a top pick on my fruit list. But if you’re like me you just don’t enjoy biting into an apple all that much. Not to mention I am one of those people who also enjoys dipping my apple in peanut butter. That’s exactly why I love the Apple Slicer so much – in fact you’ll find one of these babies tucked away in my desk drawer at the office too…

I must have been introduced to the apple slicer some 15 years ago at a Pampered Chef party, and since then I have seen it at ikea, Walmart and pretty much every grocery store I’ve been to. But the best thing about it is the fact that it costs under $5 ($4.99 @ ikea)! There are of course more fancy versions like the “Dial-a-Slice” (pictured here) that gives you an option of 8 or 16 slices and costs $19.95 (chefscatalog.org). But the point is it makes eating those 5 servings of fruit every day that much easier – that’s why its also a gadget I often recommend to my clients!

Oh did I mention that in their review, Boyer and Liu also found that adding apples to your diet – like pears and other fruits and veggies – can increase weight loss?