Guava Cheese or Perad is a quintessential Goan sweet that makes an appearance at Christmas time. Its flavourful and lightly chewy like a Guava gummy candy.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!!!
Drain the guava halves and reserve the syrup.
Now place all the seeds, that were previously scooped out, in a strainer, add a couple of spoons of the reserved syrup from the cans and stir through the strainer to extract all the guava puree from the centres. You may need to do this a couple of times adding a tiny bit of syrup each time to extract all the guava. Add the extract to the pan and now discard the seeds.
I usually end up with about 370g pulp from the halves and about 250g from the centres. In all about 620g of guava pulp. Other recipes call for a lot more sugar, but since these are canned guavas in syrup they are sweeter than the fresh ones, so I’ve cut down on the amount of added sugar in the recipe.
Add the cloves and the sugar to the pan.
Place the pan on medium heat and stir continuously using a wooden spoon with a long handle. The guava mix tends to sputter and spit while cooking and the long handle will prevent the mix splashing on your arms. Make sure that when you stir, the spoon gets to the edges of the pan to prevent it sticking to the bottom of the pan and burning. If the mix sputters too much, lower the the heat and continue cooking.
When the mix thickens, extract the cloves carefully and discard. Continue cooking till it leaves the sides of the pan. Keep stirring.
Test to see if done. (Use water test – Place some icy cold water in a small bowl and drop a teaspoon of the sweet on it. If it firms up on cooling it is done. If it is still very soft or too sticky, it needs more cooking).
When done, pour the mix into the greased pan. Using the back of a large spoon that has been greased with some ghee spread the mix to form an even slab and set aside to cool.
When it has cooled down a bit, using a knife that has been greased with some ghee, cut into cubes. You may need to grease the knife a couple of times while cutting to prevent it sticking.
When it has completely cooled, store in an air tight container. If you are making this ahead of time, or if it summer like in our part of the world, refrigerate till you are ready to use.
Sometime in August, we were celebrating a couple of birthdays at work and I decided I was going to bring a batch of these to the celebration. I was a little skeptical of how they would be received, but I shouldn’t have been. They disappeared. Not everyone had an opportunity to grab one, but some clever ones managed to get seconds, maybe thirds 😉 Those that had a chance to try them out, absolutely loved them. So turns out I didn’t have to worry about these at all. I’ve had a few people ask me for the recipe more than once. So I’m actually doing another post for it.
This is one of the easier treats I’ve made and if you have to take something sweet to a potluck, may I recommend making these. They will be an instant hit. Be warned, they are really moreish. You wont be able to stop at one.
(Makes 1 dozen)
200g Oreo cookies (each packet is 137g, I just used 2 packets)
60g cream cheese
200g chocolate (I used 100g milk chocolate and 100g dark chocolate but you could use all milk or all dark or any ratio you prefer)
1/4 cup Candy melts (I used Yellow melts)
Blitz the cookies in a food processor till it reaches a fine crumb state. (If you don’t have a food processor, place the cookies in a ziplock bag and pound on them using a rolling pin.)
Stir in the cream cheese and mix thoroughly.
Roll them into balls. Refrigerate them for an hour so that the firm up.
Chop the chocolate into small pieces. Melt the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl for 30 seconds and stir. Then as needed microwave in 30 second increments stirring inbetween till the chocolate melts. The stirring helps the chocolate melt.
Line a cookie sheet tray with parchment paper.
Dip the cookie balls in the melted chocolate. Using a fork, let the excess chocolate drip off and leave them to set on the parchment lined tray. You can serve them up as they are or decorate them with sprinkles or chocolate then do that at this stage and leave it to set.
If you want to use sprinkles to decorate them, sprinkle them on the truffles just after you dip them in chocolate.
If you want to drizzle some chocolate or candy melts over, microwave them in a microwave safe bowl according to the package instructions. Pour it into an icing bag or a small ziplock bag, snip off the tip of the bag and drizzle the chocolate over the truffles. Leave to set.
I decided to try out her Cayenne Truffles for this weeks reveal. It is a simple recipe to make with some stunning results. But if you live in Australia, be warned, do not make it on the hottest day of the season, like I did. I had a little trouble forming them because of the weather, so they may not look as good as her’s did, but they were so tasty. The cayenne is not overpowering, but subtle and best of all, I was really pleased that I can now say I’ve made truffles at home. Thanks Camilla for a lovely recipe.
Yields: Approx 2.5-3 dozen truffles
8oz good quality bittersweet chocolate
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1-2 pinches of cayenne powder
Unsweetened cocoa powder, to roll the truffles in
Chop the chocolate into small pieces.
In a small heavy bottomed saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer.
Take off the heat, add the chocolate and the cayenne pepper to the pan and let it sit for about a minute or so and then stir together till everything has melted and mixed well.
Pour into a shallow bowl and refrigerate for a couple of hours.
Scoop out small truffle sized balls and place them on a plate and refrigerate till they firm up, about 15 minutes.
Take about 2-3 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder in a little plate.
Roll the truffle mix into balls and toss them in the cocoa powder and ensure they cover the truffles well.
Refrigerate and enjoy!!!
I was seriously doubting if I’d be able to participate in this years 12WOCT party. As you know, I’ve only just moved to Sydney and am just about getting settled in. More importantly, I don’t have an oven at my disposal. Can you imagine that? I’m feeling a little lost without one at the moment. But I decided to prove to myself that I can have an equally delicious Christmas platter with just a microwave and a stovetop. This year, look out for easy, quick and fun options that you can belt out, even if all you have is a little kitchenette, like I do. Every week for the next 12 Weeks I’ll post something yummy that should give you a few options for your own Christmas platter. If you don’t want to miss out on the fun, you can follow my blog on Bloglovin’ (button on the right), and yeah, we’re on Facebook too, you can follow us here.
This week, I decided to kick-off the festivities with some home made Honeycomb. It’s a Nigella Lawson recipe which she refers to as Hokey Pokey. Whatever you decide to call it, you have to give this a try. And you know why? It will take you less than 30 minutes from start to finish to whip up a batch of this deliciousness. Also, you don’t need any fancy ingredients or equipment to make it. With just 3 ingredients and a stovetop, you’ll end up with some really delicious, golden Hokey Pokey. This will be a sure hit for folks who like their candy really sweet. It was a little sweet for my liking, but I know a few people who would devour the whole lot. I think this Hokey Pokey would be great crushed over some ice cream or dipped in some dark chocolate. I gotta try that soon. If this lasts, this candy is best stored in an airtight container.
This batch turned out a little darker that it should have and hence had a slight bitter touch to it, but we like a darker caramel anyway, so it worked out well for us. However, when I make my next batch, I will take it off the heat a little earlier.
Recipe by: Nigella Lawson
1/2 cup caster sugar
4 tbsp golden syrup
1 heaped tsp baking soda
Put the sugar and syrup in a saucepan an stir lightly to combine, before you can put in on the heat.
Do not stir once it is on the heat, or it’ll turn gritty and grainy, and you don’t want that to happen.
Place on the heat and let it melt and turn to a caramel-like gooey consistency.
You may swirl the pan if you’d like but please don’t stir.
Once the sugar has melted completely, take the pan off the heat and add the baking soda and quickly whisk it in.
Immediately turn it out onto some baking paper and leave it to set for about 15-20 minutes. (It may take longer depending on the temperature.) You can also pop it into the fridge once it has cooled down, to finish setting up.
Once it has set, roughly break it up into pieces, and there you go. You have some delicious homemade Honeycomb.
Don’t forget to stop by and check out what the other have whipped up this week. Also, if you’d like to participate in this 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats edition, stop by our lovely host, Brenda’s blog, Meal Planning Magic and fill out the form available here.
To check out my previous SRC assignments, click here.
Anyway, on to this month’s assignment. This was the first time ever I’ve been assigned an Australian blog, actually, I think its probably the first time I’ve spent this much time on one. My assignment this month was Leigh’s Chit Chat Chomp. What a fun name! And what a beautiful blog. Hi Leigh! I really enjoyed looking through your blog space this month. Leigh is from Melbourne and loves travelling and food. Her travelogues are very interesting. Though I didn’t have the time to go through them all, with Easter prep and stuff, I’ve bookmarked them to read through later. I think I could plan a lovely trip to Australia with tips from this lovely blog. Go on and visit her! You’ll have fun!!! Not to mention you’ll be drooling over her lovely food clicks and recipes. It was fun having so many lovely options to choose from. Oh did I mention that Leigh has a little weekend catering venture that she runs. I have a more than a few recipes I want to try out and I’m sure once you head on over there you’ll be in the same boat with me 🙂
For my assignment this month, I was on the lookout for some feel good food. I just got back from a 3-day weekend trip to Panchgani. More on that later. But coming back to the city had me down with a severe case of the blues. So when I saw Leigh’s caramel popcorn, I knew I was going to make it. Popcorn and caramel – two of my favorite things in one. Its tried and tested comfort food that makes you feel better instantly. Who am I to disagree? Its simple and quick to put together and I enjoyed every bit of it. I halved the recipe this time around since I knew I’d have no problem polishing off the whole lot and didn’t want to be faced with that kind of temptation. And I was right to do so! What a treat this caramel popcorn is! I had to try really hard to keep myself from finishing it off. Lovely caramel flavor, with a tiny hint of honey! I’m so glad I now have a recipe like this in my arsenal. This will be perfect for parties and around Christmas!
40g popcorn kernels (I used a pack of Act II – classic salted)
1 tbsp butter
1/8 cup honey
1/4 cup caster sugar
1/8 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Cook the popcorn according to the manufacturers instructions.
For the caramel sauce, place the butter, honey and sugar in a saucepan over low heat and stir it till the butter melts down.
Turn up the heat to a medium and bring the mixture to a boil for 3-4 minutes or until it turns golden and has thickened.
Take off the heat and add the bicarbonate of soda and stir well to combine.
Pour the sauce over the popcorn, mix to coat the kernels well and spoon onto a lightly greased baking tray to set.
Break into pieces and serve.
Check out these little chunks of deliciousness!!!
Recipe from: Connor’s Cooking
1/2 cup popcorn kernels, unpopped
Salt, to taste
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 tbsp water
1/2 tsp food color of your choice
Pop the popcorn kernels, salt to taste and set aside.
In a pan large enough to fit the popcorn and toss them, place the sugar, butter, vanilla, water and food color and bring to a boil on medium heat, stirring continuously.
Cook for 1 minute at a rolling boil and remove from the heat. Add the popcorn to the pan and toss using a spoon to coat well.
Leave to set for about 10 minutes.
Serve or pack and store.
Don’t forget to check out what the others cooked up.
heat for exactly 7 minutes.
– If the marzipan turns too dry add a couple of drops of rose water and knead till it reaches desired consistency.
– If the marzipan is slightly moister than you’d like, knead with some icing sugar till it reaches the desired consistency.
– If the dough is too moist, put in back on the fire for a minute or so and stir. This step is usually not needed. I had to do this just once when using a different stovetop and the lowest flame was way to low than what you’d find on a regular stove top.
This week I bring to you a treat like none I’ve ever tasted before. I’ve heard of love at first sight, but for me this was love at first bite, literally. The only thing I remember thinking as I savored every bite of this was “OH MY GOODNESS!!! OH MY GOODNESS!!! And you know what, it wasn’t me. I wasn’t going crazy. My husband also thought this was one of the best treats we’d eaten ever. That is the highest honor and treat can every get in my home. And mind you, these little devious treats are addictive. For the fist time in a very long time, I found myself thinking of these bars every now and then and it took massive restraint to keep from wolfing these down.