S’mores Creme Cup

S’mores is one of my favorite summertime desserts. I love having bonfires with my friends at midnight and telling embarrassing stories of each other while munching on gooey marshmallow and chocolate goodness.

Luckily for you, I have created an easier and less messy way of eating S’mores that you can enjoy anytime of day and anytime in the year.

S'mores Creme Cup
S’mores Creme Cup

S’mores Creme Cup

(Makes 18 mini cups)

180g S’mores flavored Oreos (11)

75g unsalted butter, melted

1/2 cup full fat coconut milk (130g)

65g of chocolate chips

9 Marshmallows

Directions

  1. In a blender, blend the oreos until it becomes a moldable powder. The cream in the oreos should help the biscuit layer bind together. Next add in the melted butter and pulse until well combined.
  2. Scoop the oreo crust into a lined muffin pan. Make sure you cover the base and all of the sides of the liner. I used a mini muffin pan and made 18 cups.
  3. In a small skillet at medium heat, whisk the full fat milk and chocolate chips together until a thick chocolate paste is formed. Pour the chocolate sauce into each of the oreo crusts and set aside.
  4. Cut the marshmallows in half and place the marshmallow cut side down on top of each cup.
  5. Broil the creme cups for 2-4 minutes at 350℉ (180℃)  or until marshmallows are puffed and lightly toasted on top.
  6. Keep the S’mores Creme Cups in the fridge for 2 hours until the chocolate cream is set. The cups should easily pop out of the muffin liners. Enjoy!

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Baked Jalapeno Mac & Cheese

In my 17 months of food blogging, this is the first recipe I have posted that is savory and socially acceptable to eat at lunch or dinner. I mean you could eat Pistachio & Chocolate Cream Tarts for dinner buut you do need to eat your vegetables.

This baked jalapeno mac & cheese is crunchy, cheesy & spicy. Don’t worry, it’s not as spicy as Indian food 😉

Before the Mac & Cheese was baked in the oven
Before the Mac & Cheese was baked in the oven

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Baked Jalapeno Mac & Cheese

(Serves 4)

6 oz (171 grams) pasta (use any type you want or have in your pantry)

1 ½ tbsp butter

2 tbsp all purpose flour

2 medium finely diced jalapeno peppers, remove stems and seeds

1 cup milk

½ cup chicken stock, vegetable stock or beer

1 ½ – 2 cups Manchego cheese

Salt & black pepper to taste

4 tbsp breadcrumbs

¼ tsp Paprika

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 ℉ (175 ℃).
  2. Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions, drain, and set aside.
  3. Lightly coat 4 4inch casserole dishes with olive oil. I used
  4. In a medium size skillet, over medium heat, melt butter. Turn heat to low and add flour, using a whisk, mix flour and butter. Add jalapeños and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Next, add skim milk and stock, and continue whisking. Raise heat to medium until mixture becomes a boil and continue whisking until mixture starts boiling and becomes thick.Continue whisking mixture until smooth and add salt and pepper.
  6. Once the mixture has become thick, remove from heat and add shredded cheese and mix until all of the cheese is melted.
  7. Add cooked pasta to casserole dish and pour cheese sauce over the pasta. Use a spatula to mix pasta and cheese sauce, making sure all the pasta is evenly covered.
  8. In a small bowl mix the breadcrumbs with paprika and then sprinkle it over the mac & cheese. If you want, sprinkle more shredded Manchego cheese.
  9. Bake for 20 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly and serve immediately. Enjoy!

If you make my Baked Jalapeno Mac & Cheese, make sure you take a picture & share it with me by using #medhacooks on Instagram!

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Reese’s Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Pie Cups

This past week the news has been quite upsetting and frustrating. Everyday I have opened my phone with headlines of shootings all across the US. Like others, I’m sick and tired of waking up to shootings and wish to have this violence stopped at once. I can only hope and pray that people come to their senses and realize guns should not be the first resort to any matter in life.

Now that I have expressed my feelings on these current events, let’s focus on one of my favorite candies; Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

Last year I learned how easy it is to create homemade Reese’s and they taste so much better than the store bought candy. I decided to add a twist to the traditional Reese’s and add a layer of “pumpkin pie”. The outcome? A mouthwatering candy with thick layers of peanut butter and spiced pumpkin pie!

Reese's Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Pie Cups
Reese’s Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Pie Cups

Reese’s Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Pie Cups

( Vegan & Paleo) Serves 15

5 tbsp peanut butter
5 tbsp vanilla protein powder
2 tsp honey
Dash of vanilla extract
5 tbsp pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
2 tbsp sifted coconut flour

2 tbsp honey1 pinch of Cinnamon

5 tbsp chocolate chips
1/2 tbsp coconut oil
Directions
1. Combine the first set of 4 ingredients in a small bowl & set aside.
2. Mix together the second set of 4 ingredients in a small bowl & set aside.
3. In a microwave, melt the chocolate chips & coconut oil for 1 minute.
4. In a lined small muffin/ cupcake pan, pour 1 tsp (teaspoon) of the melted chocolate. Make sure the chocolate covers the bottom & the sides of the liner. Next add 1 tsp of the peanut butter filling & spread it over the base. Next add 1 tsp of the pumpkin pie filling  evenly spread it across the peanut butter filling. Finally, pour 1 tsp of the melted chocolate on top of the 2 fillings.
5. Repeat step 4 as many times as needed until the ingredients run out. This recipe made 15 mini Reese’s cup for me, but if you have a larger muffin pan than I do,  there will be around 7 – 10 cups made.
Enjoy!

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Pistachio & Chocolate Cream Tart

Quick & easy tart for the summer? YES please! This cream tart uses only 4 ingredients plus it’s raw vegan! (No baking = no mishaps in the kitchen)

Pistachio & Chocolate Cream Tart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plate & Silverware from Sur La Table

Pistachio & Chocolate Cream Tart

(Vegan & Gluten Free)

1 cup dates

1 cup pistachios

300g coconut cream*

150g dark chocolate chips

Directions

  1. In a blender, blend the dates & pistachios together until a sticky dough forms. With wet hands, press down the “dough” in a lined 9 inch cake pan. Set aside in the freezer.

2. In a large saucepan, melt the coconut cream & chocolate chips on medium heat until it turns into a thick chocolate shake consistency. Let the mixture cool down for 5-10 minutes, then pour it into the crust.

3. Place the tart in the freezer for about 3-4 hours. When ready to serve, keep the cream tart at room temperature for about 5 minutes before eating. Enjoy!

*Buy a can of full fat coconut milk & place in the fridge overnight (for at least 8 hours.) The next morning, open the can & ONLY use the white cream on top for the coconut cream in the recipe.

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Restaurant Review: Pasha

In early April, my family and I had the chance to dine at Pasha, a authentic Turkish restaurant in Toronto. In the past several years, I have found it hard to find authentic Mediterranean and Middle Eastern food at a good price. Luckily Pasha serves delicious food at a decent price. For my American friends, the prices are great since 1 Canadian dollar is around .78 American cents.

Starters

Ayran
Ayran
Cigar Rolls
Cigar Rolls (Sigara Boregi)

For drinks, we opted to try a new and unusual drink. Ayran is a savory yogurt drink that tastes like the Indian lassi except it isn’t as creamy. My parents thoroughly enjoyed the drink but the savory taste did not excite me. We paired the Ayran with Sigara Boregi, a fried fillo dough stuffed with feta cheese and parsely.

Entrées

Coban Kavurma
Coban Kavurma

My dad and I ordered the Coban Kavurma which includes chunks of buttery spiced lamb sauteed with shallots, mushrooms, green peppers, tomatoes and oregano. Oh my lord, this is the best lamb that I have ever eaten at a restaurant. Usually restaurants don’t add enough flavor or spices in their lamb, but the chefs at Pasha cooked the lamb to perfection.  Combined with the lovely spices and butter, I would definitely come back to Pasha just to have this dish!

Manti
Manti
Manti, Homemade Turkish Ravioli
Manti, Homemade Turkish Ravioli

My mother ordered Manti which is a Turkish Ravioli. The lamb was covered in a thin layer dough and served with rice, garlic yogurt and tomato sauce. Manti reminded me of the times when I would stuff my mom’s homemade lamb chops in freshly made rotis. This dish was also delicous, but I have to say, the  Coban Kavurma was out of this world amazing!

Dessert

Kunefe
Kunefe

Like at all restaurants, I make sure to leave some extra space in my stomach for dessert since dessert is my favorite meal. Kunefe is a crunchy cheese pastry served in a sugary syrup and crushed pistachios. I would recommend you to eat the Kunefe with vanilla ice cream; it’s a must!

Turkish Coffee
Turkish Coffee

To wash down the whole meal, I ordered a Turkish coffee. My oh my, the waiter wasn’t kidding when she said the coffee was strong. I was wide eye awake until 2 o’clock in the morning with so much energy I decided to take a midnight run in my neighborhood. (I NEVER run. Running isn’t even in my vocabulary.) Needless to say, I’ll be ordering Turkish coffee everyday during midterm and final weeks at university.

Overall, our experience at Pasha was amazing. The waitress was very kind and helpful in directing us to order the most authentic Turkish dish on the menu. The dishes we tried at Pasha were all delicious and tasty! If you are ever in Toronto I would highly suggest you to stop by at Pasha and enjoy a lunch or a dinner here. Make sure you order the Coban Kavurma and Kunefe with vanilla ice cream!

Pasha Authentic Turkish Cuisine

http://www.pashaturkishrestaurant.com/

64 Overlea Blvd. Unit 10, M4H 1C4 Toronto

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Italian Chocolate Ricotta Cake

Hello MedhaCooks readers!

It has been a long time since I have posted a new recipe since this past month I had 6 exams to take and I finished school. Now that I am finally finished with school I can spend more time creating new recipes and working with Sarah Barry to create beautiful photographs of my dishes!

Sarah Barry took the pictures for this  Italian Chocolate Ricotta Cake and she will be the official photographer for my Book of Avocados cookbook that will be coming out next month! If you want to see more of her work, check out her website and Instagram.

http://thereallifeportrait.weebly.com/

https://www.instagram.com/sarahb48/

Now onto this delicious cake! This isn’t your typical overtly sweet American cake, hence the “Italian”. This cake reminds me of a bitter espresso cake I had in a farmers market in Florence. Don’t worry, this cake isn’t bitter but if you like sweeter desserts I would eat the cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Italian Chocolate Ricotta Cake
Italian Chocolate Ricotta Cake

Italian Chocolate Ricotta Cake 

(Gluten Free & Dairy Free if you use non dairy milk)

40g dark chocolate chips
3 eggs
200g crumbled ricotta
75g light brown sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
30g corn starch
175g cacao powder
Directions
1. Preheat the oven to 350F and line a 9 inch cake pan with parchment paper.
2. In a microwaveable bowl, melt the dark chocolate chips for 1 minute. Set aside.
3. Separate the egg whites and the egg yolks. In a small bowl, beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks, it will resemble meringue. Set aside.
4. In a medium sized bowl, beat  the ricotta until it becomes less crumbly and more creamy (hopefully this makes sense). The ricotta won’t turn into a paste but it the crumbled ricotta should stick together. (If this step does not make sense,  just leave me a comment and I’ll help you 🙂 )
5. In the bowl with the ricotta, beat the melted chocolate, egg yolks, sugar, vanilla extract and milk together until a thick paste forms. Next fold in the egg whites, corn starch and cacao powder.
6. Pour the batter into the lined pan and bake for 35 – 40 minutes. Turn off the oven after the 35 – 40 minutes and leave the cake to cool inside the oven. Serve the cake warm with ice cream and melted chocolate. Enjoy!

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Key Lime + Chocolate Pudding

This past December when I visited Fort Meyers, I stopped by the famous Sun Harvest Citrus to buy oranges. While I was there, they were selling key lime & chocolate soft serves, which sounds like a weird combination of flavors, but it tasted really good!

When I came back home, I tried to recreate the soft serve, but I was in no mood to deal with my ice cream machine since it likes to throw tantrums very often. Instead I made a pudding using avocados which makes the pudding extremely creamy and delicious!

Key Lime + Chocolate Pudding
Key Lime + Chocolate Pudding

Key Lime + Chocolate Pudding

(Raw Vegan & Paleo)

Key lime:
1 avocado
Zest & juice of 1 small lime
1 tbsp honey
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
Chocolate:
1 avocado

2 tbsp chocolate chips
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp cacao powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
Directions: 
1. In a medium sized bowl, whisk all the ingredients for the Key Lime pudding until smooth. Place the bowl in the fridge.
2. Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave for 1 minute. Take the rest of the ingredients for the chocolate pudding & whisk it until there are no avocado chunks left. Slowly add in the melted chocolate to the mixture until everything is combined.
3. Next, take 2 margarita glasses & layer the chocolate & key lime pudding until you have used up both the mixtures. Serve cold with a lime slice & shredded coconut. Enjoy!

 If you make this pudding, make sure you tag #medhacooks & @medhacooks so I can see your beautiful creations!

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Kheer: Indian Rice Pudding

Kheer is a dessert that is made during any religious Hindu holiday or any day of the year. Both Hindus & Muslims in India enjoy this delicious dessert which is very easy to make.

My mom uses the 1:1:5 ratio for rice: sugar: milk. This ratio works everytime & even the most unqualified cooks are able to make Kheer without any mistakes.

Kheer: Indian Rice Pudding
Kheer: Indian Rice Pudding

Kheer

1 stick of cinnamon
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup small grain rice
5 cups of 2% milk (at room temperature)
1 tsp ground cardamom

Directions
1. Soak the small grain rice in hot water for at least 1 hour. After the hour, drain the water out so you just have the rice left.

2. In a heavy pan at medium heat, place all of the ingredients in the pan & constantly stir until slightly thickened (this takes about 30 minutes). Make sure you are constantly stirring so that the milk doesn’t burn.

3. Take the pan off the heat, & let the Kheer cool slightly before serving. Reminder: The Kheer will thicken as it cools down.

4. Serve warm or cold with almonds, raisins & ground nutmeg. Keep all left overs in the fridge. Enjoy!

 

Vegan Nutella Mugcake

If you personally know me, you would know that I have a huge obsession with Nutella. I actually prefer Nutella over peanut butter, which is crazy because I’m also in love with peanut butter.

This Mugcake does not have the same texture as a traditional cake would. It’s spongy & moist and tastes delicious with vanilla ice cream, berries & extra Nutella on top!

I hope you enjoy this Nutella Mugcake as much as I do ☺️


Vegan Nutella Mugcake

2 tbsp almond flour*

1 tsp all purpose flour

2 tbsp Nutella or Justin’s hazelnut butter

2 tbsp milk

1/4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions

1. Mix all of the ingredients together in a small bowl & pour batter into a greased tea cup. (Spread grapeseed oil or butter on the side of the cup).

2. Microwave for 1 minute for a spongy texture. If you want a more cake-y texture keeping microwaving the Mugcake at 15 second intervals until your desired texture is reached.

3. Let the Mugcake cool for 3-5 minutes & then serve with vanilla ice cream & berries. Enjoy!

* If you don’t own almond flour, replace it with 2 tbsp of all purpose flour & do NOT add in the extra 1 tsp of all purpose flour.

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French Crepes

Over the weekend I learned how to make the perfect crepes! For the the past 4 years, I’ve been trying to recreate the crepes that I ate in Paris in Spring of 2012. Luckily I had a real French lady help me! Thank you Déotille! 😘

There is a special, secret ingredient that you must add in order to get the perfect crepe.

I hope you give this recipe a try! 😊


French Crepes by Déotille 

300g of flour

6 eggs

Pinch of salt

30g of melted butter

50g brown sugar

750 ml milk

100 ml Beer

Directions

1. Mix all the ingredients together using a whisk or a large spoon in a large bowl.

2. Heat a skillet on medium heat for about 5 minutes before making crepes.

3. To test if the pan is hot, grease the skillet using oil or butter. Make a tiny crepe & if bubbles start to form shortly after, the skillet is hot enough! Yay!!

4. Reminder: be patient while making crepes. If this is your first time making crepes, then it will take several tries before you cook & flip the crepe perfectly. Pour a ladle full of crepe batter (around 1/4 cup) into the hot skillet & spread thinly & evenly across the surface. Make sure the batter cover the entire pan!

5. When bubbles start to form, take your spatula & gently loosen the edges of the crepe. Flip the crepe & cook for about 30 – 60 seconds (it all depends how hot your skillet gets).

6. After the crepe is fully cooked, place the crepe in a play. Repeat step 5 as many times as you need.

Serve the crepes warm with Nutella, berries & homemade whipped cream! Enjoy! 😘😘

🎉 If you make these crepes, make sure you tag #medhacooks & @medhacooks so I can see your beautiful creations! 🎉

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