Purple Sweet Potato ‘Hummus’

Purple Sweet Potato ‘Hummus’

Hello Everyone! Here’s my last recipe for the year 2020! Well, technically this was scheduled to go up earlier towards the beginning of the month, but with other commitments, both personal and work, and the festive season, I haven’t had the time to write this post and prepare the other recipes that I had wanted to share with everyone on the blog. I hope everyone had an amazing Christmas despite the circumstances, and I wish everyone a Happy New Year!

Purple Sweet Potato ‘Hummus’

Traditional hummus directly translates to chickpeas and is a dip, spread, or savoury dish made from cooked, mashed chickpeas blended with tahini, lemon juice, and garlic. It is popular in the Middle East and in Middle Eastern cuisines around the globe. It can also be found in most grocery stores in North America and Europe.

Although multiple claims of its origins exist in various parts of the Middle East, the earliest known written recipes for a dish resembling hummus are recorded in cookbooks written in Cairo, Egypt, in the 13th century. The full name of the prepared spread in Arabic is ḥummuṣ bi ṭaḥīna which means ‘chickpeas with tahini’.

But here’s a playful PURPLE alternative that’s perfect as a fun snack, appetizer, breakfast, or a light meal. This Purple Sweet Potato Hummus is a legume-free version of a traditional hummus for those who simply prefer it legume-free and/or because of allergies. Though chickpea-free, it still incorporates the flavours of tahini and spices in this ‘hummus’.

Purple Sweet Potato ‘Hummus’

Tahini is a condiment made from toasted ground hulled sesame. It is served by itself (as a dip) or as a major ingredient in hummus, baba ganoush, and halva. If you can’t find tahini in stores, don’t worry because you can easily make it at home, which is what I did. Even if you can find them on the shelves of your local grocer, I highly recommend making your own so that you won’t have a jar of tahini sitting in your fridge waiting for it to go off because you won’t ever use it again – maybe. Just make enough for a one-off recipe.

Also, have you ever tried sweet potato… on toast? Put a vibrant twist to your morning toast with this complex carbs on carbs combination! *cheeky grin* It’s one of those combinations that surprises you just how good it is, together. Aside from its vibrant colour, it’s gluten free, paleo, and comes together with less than ten ingredients you probably have on hand or have easy access to from your local grocer. You may also substitute the purple sweet potatoes for other colour variants such as orange, yellow, or white, whatever is available locally.

Before we dive into tonight’s recipe, please take the time to check out the original recipe where I drew my inspiration from over on Flora & Vino by Lauren.

Purple Sweet Potato ‘Hummus’ Ingredients

PREP TIME 30 MINS | COOKING TIME 10 MINS | SERVES 6

INGREDIENTS

For the homemade tahini

  • 1 cup sesame seeds, hulled
  • 2 to 4 tbsp olive oil
  • Pinch of salt, optional

For the sweet potato hummus

  • 1 cup cooked and roughly mashed purple sweet potatoes*
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • Filtered water or unsweetened almond milk, as needed
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Wholemeal bread slices
  • Fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • Ground paprika
  • Roasted pistachio nuts
  • Toasted cumin seeds

METHOD

  1. Homemade Tahini: Add the sesame seeds to a wide, dry saucepan over medium-low heat and toast, stirring constantly until the seeds become fragrant and lightly coloured (not brown), for 3 to 5 minutes. Sesame seeds can burn very quickly so keep an eye on them and be careful.
  2. Transfer the toasted sesame seeds to a baking sheet or large plate for them to cool down completely.
  3. Once cool, add the sesame seeds to the bowl of a food processor then process until a crumbly paste forms, about a minute.
  4. Add 3 tablespoons of the olive oil then process for 2 to 3 minutes more, stopping to scrape the bottom and sides of the food processor a couple times. Check the tahini’s consistency. It should be smooth, not gritty and should be pourable. You may need to process for another minute or add the additional tablespoon of oil.
  5. Taste the tahini for seasoning then add salt to taste. Process 5 to 10 seconds to mix it in. Set aside until ready to use.**
  6. Purple Sweet Potato ‘Hummus’: Add the mashed purple sweet potato, tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and cumin to a high speed blender or food processor and pulse until well-combined and creamy, scraping down the sides as needed to recombine.
  7. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper to the mixture. Taste and adjust if needed, i.e. add more lemon for brightness, cumin for spice, and tahini for creaminess. If the mixture is too thick, add filtered water or unsweetened almond milk in 1 tablespoon increments to reach your desired consistency.
  8. Serve with toast and top with your choice of toppings. I went with pistachio nuts, ground paprika, a sprinkle of toasted cumin seeds, and fresh parsley. Enjoy!

Purple Sweet Potato ‘Hummus’

Notes:

  • * To cook the sweet potatoes, scrub and peel them, then cut the flesh into large cubes. Fill a large pot with an inch of water and bring to a boil. Add the sweet potato cubes to a steamer basket and steam in the pot for about 7 to 10 minutes until the flesh is very tender when pierced with a fork. Drain, place the cooked sweet potato in a bowl and mash with a fork or potato masher.
  • ** Store any leftover tahini covered in the refrigerator for one month. You may notice that it separates over time, like a natural peanut butter would. If this happens, give the tahini a good stir before using.
  • Store leftover Purple Sweet Potato Hummus in the fridge for up to one week.

Purple Sweet Potato ‘Hummus’

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Kaya (Malaysian Pandan Coconut Egg Jam) with Fried Mantou

Nyonya-style Kaya (Malaysian Pandan Coconut Egg Jam)

Hello Everyone! Try something new on your morning toast! If you’re looking to change up your breakfast condiment selection from the everyday jams and jellies, try this Pandan Coconut Egg Jam. It will transport you to the tropics with its flavourful, rich, and sweet taste!

Kaya (Malaysian Pandan Coconut Egg Jam) with Fried Mantou

Kaya in the Malay language means “rich”, with reference to the texture of this jam. It is a sweet coconut egg jam that is rich, thick and custard-like in texture, and flavoured with pandan, giving it a fun green colour.

There are two well-known varieties of kaya:

  • Nyonya, which is green in colour
  • Hainanese, which is darker brown in colour and often sweetened with honey

The colour variation depends on the number of eggs, the caramelisation of the sugar, and the amount of pandan leaves used. In the Philippines, a variation of this jam is known as matamís sa báo, but it does not contain eggs and is less thick in texture. In Thailand, it is known as sangkhaya.

Kaya (Malaysian Pandan Coconut Egg Jam) with Fried Mantou

This version of kaya that I will be sharing with you guys tonight is the Nyonya-style one, which gets its aromatic fragrance and natural green colour from the pandan leaf. The idea of treating it as a dip rather than a spread or a filling was inspired from my trip to Thailand a couple years back, in 2013. We (my family and I) were at a roadside stall for dinner and on their menu they had steamed thick-sliced bread with a kaya and condensed milk dip. I decided to recreate this dish to share with you guys tonight, but instead of serving it with steamed bread, I fried some mantou buns for that extra-added crunch on the outer layer while still keeping the inside of the buns soft.

Before we dive into tonight’s recipe, please take the time to check out the original where I drew my inspiration from over on Curious Cuisiniere by Michelle Wong.

Kaya (Malaysian Pandan Coconut Egg Jam) Ingredients

PREP TIME 5 MINS | COOKING TIME 15 MINS | MAKES 1 SMALL JAR

INGREDIENTS

  • 4-5 pandan (screwpine) leaves
  • 200ml coconut milk
  • 4 large free range eggs
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar

Optional (to serve with)

  • Condensed milk
  • Fried mantou buns

METHOD

  1. Place the pandan leaves together with the coconut milk in a food processor or heavy-duty blender, and blitz/blend for a few minutes until the pandan leaves have been finely puréed.
  2. Pour the blended pandan-infused coconut milk over a fine sieve and into a large bowl. Strain the coconut milk from the pandan leaf pulp, pressing down firmly with the back of a spoon to extract all of the coconut milk from the pulp. Discard the pandan leaf pulp.
  3. In a separate heat-proof bowl, beat together the eggs and sugar, until frothy. Then, add the pandan-infused coconut milk to the egg and sugar mixture.
  4. Create a bain-marie (double-boiler) by pouring some water into a pot that is slightly larger than your heat-proof bowl. Very important, check to see if your bowl can sit on top of the pot without any water touching the bottom of the bowl.
  5. Heat your pot of water over low-medium and bring to a slight simmer. Once slightly simmering, place the bowl with the coconut milk and eggs over it and gently whisk for 10-15 minutes, ensuring no water escapes from the bottom pot. It’s important to keep a low simmer or else the eggs can curdle quickly (refer to notes).
  6. Once done, transfer the kaya to a small serving dish and add just a touch of condensed milk (just enough that it doesn’t become overly sweet) and serve with your choice of steamed or fried bread. Whatever tickles your fancy! Enjoy!

Kaya (Malaysian Pandan Coconut Egg Jam) with Fried Mantou

Transfer the remaining kaya into a sterilised and clean jar. Let it cool before storing in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Kaya is eaten as a condiment spread on bread or toast, usually as breakfast.

Kaya (Malaysian Pandan Coconut Egg Jam)

Notes:

  • If you don’t have access to fresh pandan leaves, you may be able to find pandan extract which comes in a small bottle or pandan leaf powder, which will work perfectly fine with the recipe.
  • If your eggs curdle during the cooking process, not to fret! Continue to cook for the full 15 minutes, and then transfer the mixture to a blender. Blend until the kaya is smooth.

Growing up in Brunei, Nyonya-style kaya was my go-to choice of spread (together with peanut butter or just butter) on the waffles that you’d get at the local supermarket (Hua Ho) in the snack corner. Their freshly made kaya-filled pancakes, or even the kaya buns on their shelves were also my go-to choice. Also not forgetting the Hainanese kaya-filled cakoi (Chinese youtiao fried dough) from a nearby roadside stall from my workplace that my then workmates and I used to drive to our lunch breaks, and the kaya-buttered toast from a popular Chinese kopitiam known as Chop Jing Chew. These are, if not all, then some of my fondest memories of kaya.

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Buffalo Cauliflower & Quinoa "Meatballs"

Buffalo Cauliflower & Quinoa “Meatballs”

Hello Everyone! Before I begin, I would like to check in with everyone and see if you all were able to guess the theme for this month. I’m pretty sure that by this post, you’ll have an idea of a recurring theme, but nevertheless, I will share it with you guys right here, right now! Drumroll please!

BALL BALLS! Yes, you read that right, ball balls, and here is a little back story to the name – so there was one day, back when I was still living in Australia for my university studies, my then roommate and I were talking about Christmas I guess, well I actually don’t remember the root of our conversation but it was more like I misunderstood, or I didn’t quite hear the pronunciation of the word “baubles” when my roommate had said it. At that time, I assumed that she said “ball balls” and that, that was what those round Christmas ornaments were called. Fast forward to another time, I was correct by someone (sorry I can’t remember who) that it was actually baubles and not ball balls. I was so disappointed at the time because I thought ball balls was such an epic name to call these Christmas ornament. Just recently, and when I say recently I mean like about a year ago or so, Jialing shared with me a folder name in their office server and it was titled BALL BALLS, to which I replied to her “SEE I TOLD YOU THEY ARE CALLED BALL BALLS!” I was just overly excited at the fact that I wasn’t the only dumb one to call them ball balls.

Buffalo Cauliflower & Quinoa "Meatballs"

Jialing has been quite helpful this year in a way that she has helped me with some blog themes for this year. At first, she asked me what the theme of my blog would be for the month of December, and we both came up with the idea of doing ball-shaped food as we recalled our “ball balls” story. So, as I do not have a backstory for this particular recipe since I just came across it while browsing through Pinterest, I will just get right in to the recipe. Before you do, check out the original recipe by Erin over on The Almond Eater.

“Add a spicy kick to meatless meatballs with these vegan Buffalo Cauliflower Quinoa Meatballs. With simple ingredients, like cauliflower, quinoa, garlic, and breadcrumbs, they’re sure to be a hit for the whole family!” — Erin, The Almond Eater.

Buffalo Cauliflower & Quinoa "Meatballs" Ingredients

Buffalo Cauliflower & Quinoa "Meatballs"

PREP TIME 30 MINS | COOKING TIME 40 MINS | SERVES 24 BALLS

INGREDIENTS

For the cauliflower quinoa ‘meatballs’

  • 1 cauliflower head, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 3/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-2 tbsp flour (whole wheat, all purpose or oat)
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano

For the buffalo sauce

  • 1/2 cup hot sauce
  • 60g unsalted butter
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 tsp chilli flakes

For the blue cheese-yoghurt dip

  • 3/4 cup greek yoghurt
  • 1/4 cup blue cheese, crumbled
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • Ground salt and pepper, to taste

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 190C (375F or gas mark 5). Line a baking tray with aluminium foil and set aside.
  2. Cook the quinoa in a small sauce pot according to the packet instructions (about 12-15 minutes). While the quinoa is cooking away, steam or boil the cauliflower in a separate medium-sized pot at the same time until they are tender (about 15 minutes).
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the buffalo sauce by melting the unsalted butter in a heat-proof bowl, in the microwave (or over a stove as well). Once melted, stir in the hot sauce, minced garlic, and chilli powder. Set aside.
  4. Combine the yoghurt, blue cheese, mayonnaise, garlic, milk, and lemon juice in a medium-szied bowl and whisk together until combined but still chunky. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  5. Once the quinoa is done cooking, turn the heat off and set aside. Once the cauliflower is done cooking as well, drain (if boiled) and place half the cauliflower, along with the minced garlic, into the food processor or blender and pulse for about 10-15 seconds. Remove and transfer the cauliflower into a large bowl before adding the second half of cauliflower to the food processor/blender and repeat the process.
  6. Stir in the cooked quinoa, breadcrumbs, dried oregano, and half of the buffalo sauce together with the cauliflower and then place the bowl in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes, allowing everything to cool off a bit.
  7. After 15 minutes, remove from the refrigerator and, using your hands, form the mixture into golf ball-sized balls (or smaller, depending on your preferred size), placing the balls directly onto the prepared baking tray. If the mixture is too wet, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time as needed.
  8. Drizzle about a tablespoon of olive oil over the balls and bake for 15-20 minutes and golden brown and crispy on the outside.
  9. Once done, remove from the oven, Pour a small amount of the rest of the buffalo sauce over the top of each ball, making sure they all get covered with the sauce but without drowning them otherwise they will get soggy.
  10. Serve with the blue cheese-yoghurt dip and share with family and friends!

Buffalo Cauliflower & Quinoa "Meatballs"

Buffalo Cauliflower & Quinoa "Meatballs"

Buffalo Cauliflower & Quinoa "Meatballs"

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com