Grilled Haloumi, Avocado and Pomegranate Molasses Tartine

Grilled Haloumi, Avocado and Pomegranate Molasses Tartine | NotEnoughCinnamon.com

Since I made these stuffed mushrooms  a couple weeks ago, haloumi has been on my mind a lot. I kept coming back to it, as if my brain was sending me a clear message: I WANT MORE GRILLED HALOUMI! Ok brain, got it. Here’s more haloumi for you. With avocado and pomegranate molasses.

Grilled Haloumi, Avocado and Pomegranate Molasses Tartine | NotEnoughCinnamon.com

Does it sound like a weird combination to you? Because, really, I think it’s delicious. I already loved the idea when it came up in my head but when I took my first bite, well…I loved it even more. Would you give it a try? If you’re confused about the tartine thing, it’s just a fancy (and french) way to say open-faced sandwich. So if we summarize this recipe, we have: a toasted slice of crusty bread (yum), spread with mashed avocado (yum) and topped with grilled haloumi cheese (yum). The pomegranate molasses is like the cherry on the cake, but really, if that scares you, just leave it out. Just know that you’re missing out on something BIG. ;)

Have a delicious weekend, friends!

Grilled Haloumi, Avocado and Pomegranate Molasses Tartine | NotEnoughCinnamon.com

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Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms with Ricotta, Pesto and Grilled Haloumi

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms with Ricotta, Pesto and Grilled Haloumi | NotEnoughCinnamon.com

Although I don’t like to admit it, I think I’m not really good at managing leftovers. This recipe right here? I initially  made it because I wanted to use up some ricotta I had left from another recipe. Maybe you’re thinking: so far so good, she uses the remaining ricotta because she doesn’t want to waste anything. Hum, well, not exactly… Because you see, I didn’t have enough for the whole recipe and I had to buy another jar. So basically, I now have a new jar sitting in my fridge, half full. Tell me it happens to you too!

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms with Ricotta, Pesto and Grilled Haloumi | NotEnoughCinnamon.com

I guess I’ll have to find another way to use this brand new ricotta. Or I could just make these stuffed portobello mushrooms again. ’cause they were really good. I was at a potluck last week and someone brought something similar. Everyone loved it and I knew I had to recreate it for the blog.
If you’re not familiar with haloumi, it’s a Cypriot cheese made of goat’s and sheep’s milk (although most brand now make it with cow’s milk). Because it has a high melting point, it’s perfect for grilling.
These stuffed mushrooms are perfect as an appetizer or for a light lunch!

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms with Ricotta, Pesto and Grilled Haloumi | NotEnoughCinnamon.com

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Quince, Prosciutto and Blue Cheese Toasts

Quince, Prosciutto and Blue Cheese Toasts - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

As promised, here are the Quince, Prosciutto and Blue Cheese Toasts that I served for my boyfriend’s birthday two weeks ago. They were hands down my favorite items on the menu this night. It’s no secret that I adore prosciutto and blue cheese, and the two combined are a match made in heaven. I also loved the touch of sweetness brought by the quince paste. These toasts are definitely a feast for your mouth!

Quince, Prosciutto and Blue Cheese Toasts - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

To be more accurate, I should have called these ‘pintxos’ instead of toasts. Pin-what? Yeah, I figured you would be confused. I was too. Pintxos (pronounced pinchos) are bite-sized snacks served on skewers in bars and restaurants of the Basque Country in northern Spain. The funny thing is that pintxos are usually sitting on the counter for easy self-service and at the end of the night, you simply count the number of skewers you have to calculate your bill. Brilliant if you ask me! That being said, when you try them at your next party, don’t make your guests pay for their skewers, mmkay? That would be a little bit rude and not so funny ;)

Quince, Prosciutto and Blue Cheese Toasts - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

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Smoked Trout and Basil Pesto Cream Cheese Crostini

Smoked Trout and Basil Pesto Cream Cheese Crostini - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

I’ve been dreaming of this glorious day when I’ll be making this amazingly addicting basil pesto + cream cheese spread again. I  don’t eat dairy often because I don’t handle it very well so I needed an excuse a special occasion to enjoy this heavenly combo again. And last week was just the special occasion I needed: my boyfriend Solal turned 25! Talk about the perfect excuse to indulge! And we in fact went a little bit overboard…

Solal's birthday

1. You can only see a fraction of what was on the table. And I’m not even talking about the dessert. Alright, I am. It was a decadent chocolate cake. And when I say decadent, I really mean it. Like tons of chocolate, butter, sugar and all. But you only have your 25th birthday once a lifetime, right? Except, mine will be next year… Well, we’ll do something healthier. Or not.

2. Yes, it was only for the two of us. I know. Sure, we had plenty of leftovers. Wanna know something fun? I wasn’t positive when preparing that it would be enough. Ha! silly girl. When I look at it now, it looks like we were having a party. But no, really, it was just the two of us.

On the menu we had:

-Tomato, Pesto and Mozzarella Skewers with homemade pesto – it makes a big difference if you ask me!;

Tomato and Prosciutto Bruschette;

Olive, goats cheese & chargrilled vegetable tarts - except I used ricotta instead of goats cheese;

- Charcuterie Tartines – Solal used to love eating some Sandwich au Saucisson when we lived in Paris. So French!

- Quince, ham & blue cheese toasts – my favs! Recipe coming next week!!

- Trout and Basil Pesto Cream Crostini

- Tarama, Hummus, different kind of olives and other little things to munch on, you know, just in case it wasn’t enough already.

- The decadent chocolate cake I mentioned before.

A delicious birthday if you ask me! That being said, don’t wait until it’s your birthday to make these crostini. Except if it’s next week. And if you don’t like trout/smoked salmon, bread or whatever, just stuff your face with the pesto-cream cheese thing. You’ll be forever grateful.

Smoked Trout and Basil Pesto Cream Cheese Crostini - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

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Blue Cheese, Apple and Pecan Salad with Pomegranate Vinaigrette

 Blue Cheese, Apple and Pecan Salad with Pomegranate Dressing - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

Pomegranate juice might be a serious threat to the Viagra industry. No, I’m not even kidding! A recent study showed that a daily glass of pomegranate juice could significantly increase your sex drive. Say what?! Alright, now that I have your attention, let’s talk about this salad. This pomegranate vinaigrette salad. I love how sweet and savory flavors are combined, making it an uncommon but memorable appetizer.  This would be the perfect start to a chic dinner party, without being too fussy.

On another note, I’m in Paris since Friday, visiting my friends and my family. I’m having a great time so far, enjoying good food and good company. Paris is absolutely stunning when you experience it as a tourist (not so much when you actually live here…but more on that in another post!). If you are interested in seeing a few pics of my trip, follow me on Instagram (@notenoughcinnamon)

Blue Cheese, Apple and Pecan Salad with Pomegranate Dressing - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

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Simple Broccoli Soup

Simple Broccoli Soup - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

I am not a broccoli person. I even used to hate broccoli – and now I’m ok with it. But you guys, this broccoli soup is OUTSTANDING. Like gimme-some-more-right-now outstanding. I’m not sure why, but you just can’t taste this little bitter taste that I hate  don’t like in broccoli (and cauliflower and Brussel sprouts and cabbage for that matter). Broccoli-haters: you know what I’m talking about. For you – people that I don’t really get and who just love it: all you need to know is that this soup is another glorious way to eat your favorite veggie.

For some reason, I keep coming back to broccoli. Or it keeps coming back to me… Whatever. I mean, why did I try to come up with a broccoli soup in the first place, if I don’t even like broccoli? Something’s wrong with me. I’m sure glad I did though because this soup meets all my yummy-soup criteria : it’s creamy but there’s not a single dollop of cream in it, it’s tasty but super easy to make and it’s comforting for all the reasons previously mentioned. One last detail! I’ve heard it’s been freezing cold in some parts of the US, so obviously this soup is the best thing that can happen to you right now; and for you Australian folks: it’s delicious eaten cold!

Simple Broccoli Soup - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

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Creamy Avocado Dip

Creamy Avocado Dip - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

As an avocado-obsessed, one of my missions in life is to find new avocado recipes, just so I have an excuse to always increase my consumption of it. My homemade guacamole, simply made with mashed avocado, red onion and a pinch of salt remains hands down my favorite of all time but I’m not against experimenting new things. In between guacamole batches that is.  These tuna avocado boats for instance have become a regular when comes lunch time and I’m not sure what to do/in a hurry/don’t want to cook/all of that. They’re convenient, quick and easy => winner!

Moving on to this Creamy Avocado Dip. I’m happy to say that I have a new winner in the avocado appetizer department! I used some Philadelphia cream cheese for this one, to make a creamy, velvety, dreamy texture. You’re going to love it! I also added cilantro and lime. Basically the ingredients for a traditional guacamole you say? Yep, guacamole again. At the end, I always come back to it. It’s a true love story, I’m telling you!

Creamy Avocado Dip - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

I’m currently finalizing my free e-cookbook of the Top 25 recipes of 2013! It will be available as a PDF to read on your computer and your phone. And for those of you who have an iPad, it will also be available on iBooks. Can’t wait to share it with you!
One of my goals for 2014 is to start creating my own products on Not Enough Cinnamon and to publish several ebooks. If you would like to join my mailing list and be notified when a new book is released, you can sign up below (if you are reading this article via email or the app, click here instead) Subscribers will benefit from exclusive discounts. I promise I won’t be spammy and of course, I will never sell your info to anyone. Thank you!

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Creamy Avocado Dip - NotEnoughCinnamon.com

And now, the recipe!

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Prosciutto, Caramelized Onion and Mushroom Puff Pastry Tartelettes

Prosciutto, Caramelized Onion and Mushroom Puff Pastry Tartelettes

For those of you celebrating, I hope you had a beautiful Christmas filled with joy and happiness! Anyone in a food coma? ;)

The first time I made these tartelettes was a few years ago for my birthday. Yes, I even cook for my own birthday, but only because I want to :) Every occasion is a good excuse to prepare a feast in my book! As you know, I like to cook easy and simple recipes for our everyday life but I also simply love to spend a whole day cooking and baking for a special occasion like a birthday, an anniversary, Christmas, Easter or a romantic date with my sweet boyfriend. Call me crazy but one of the things I like best about these meals – beside actually cooking and baking – is the planning! I think it’s what makes a successful and stress-free dinner party. I love spending hours (well, ok, maybe not hours…) elaborating the menu and finding perfect recipes that match my guests taste, my budget and the occasion. Then comes the time to actually start planning: which recipes can I make ahead? what ingredients do I need to buy at the last minute? in what order should I start cooking the dishes? Asking yourself these simple questions before actually starting to cook can make a world of difference. It doesn’t have to be complicated and at the end, your guests will be all ooh and aah and you’ll be one happy gal/guy!

Prosciutto, Caramelized Onion and Mushroom Puff Pastry Tartelettes

I can’t recall precisely what was on the menu this day but I know I served these yummy tartelettes as an appetizer, the main was some fish and the dessert was a raspberry Charlotte. I served them again for Christmas Eve this year and it was a success! Don’t let their elegant and complicated look fool you, these tartelettes are quite easy to make. They do require a little time, mostly because of the caramelized onions but you can prepare everything ahead. If you do, DO NOT assemble them before you’re ready to eat or the pastry will get all soggy. Prepare the onions, the mushrooms and the puff pastry and store them separately in airtight containers.

Prosciutto, Caramelized Onion and Mushroom Puff Pastry Tartelettes

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Parmesan, Oregano and Pine Nut Melts

Parmesan, Oregano and Pine Nut Melts

Christmas Eve is next week! Can you believe it? I did most of my Christmas shopping today because err…I didn’t realize it was Christmas until last week. Tell me I’m not the only one, please! What about the food? Did you decide what you’re going to make or bring to your Christmas party yet? I’m usually all about menu planning, especially for the holiday but this year…nada.

Parmesan, Oregano and Pine Nut Melts

I truly have no idea what I’m going to cook and bake. These cherry and pistachio puff pastry twists will probably make an appearance. As well as these Parmesan, Oregano and Pine Nuts Melts I’m sharing today. If you’re doing everything ‘last minute’ like me this year, I’m sure you’re going to love this recipe. It calls for only 4 ingredients and it’s ready in no time. And do I need to say anything about the parmesan/oregano combination? Right, you already know it’s amazing ;)

Parmesan, Oregano and Pine Nut Melts2

 

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Cherry Pistachio Puff Pastry Twist

Cherry Pistachio Puff Pastry Twist

This recipe is like a magic trick. As soon as the twists are out of the oven, they instantly disappear…in your guests stomaches. And yours too. Mmm…I love food magic. It’s funny to see how something so quick and easy to make can be so good. Honestly, it requires A LOT of self-control not to eat the whole batch all by yourself. Half of the twists got eaten during the photo shoot. They’re that good.

Cherry Pistachio Puff Pastry Twist

I created this recipe with the Christmas feast in mind. When comes the time for dessert, I don’t know about you but I’m usually so full that I don’t even enjoy it. These twists are the perfect alternative to the heavy traditional Christmas dessert. They are very light and you can eat just one or two (or more!)

This recipe is very versatile. If you’re not a big cherry preserve fan, just swap it for your favorite fruit. Same thing for the nuts. I personally love this combination but there’s really no rule! Enjoy :)

Cherry Pistachio Puff Pastry Twist

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