Creamy Moules Marinieres Recipe

Creamy moules marinieres picture

Next time, I am trying them with roquefort cheese

If you’re living in Lebanon, you might have noticed that mussels are now less expensive than they were few years ago. You can get 2 kg of mussels for 11-13$ when on promotion – with shells of course! But they’re still not available all year long in regular supermarkets – the fresh ones of course– and that’s a shame!

My dad is a big fan of mussels, and especially, moules marinieres that he used to have in France, so he was my guest for today’s lunch.

I strongly believe that you need to use good quality wine for cooking. The best tip I ever read was “there’s nothing called cooking wine!”.

Today’s mussels were exceptional. I used a French Sauvignon. It was dry and not too strong, just what I needed. Too bad I don’t remember the brand name.

Adding a little cream only also helped. My dad is not a big fan of cream so I only added 2 tbsp. It turned out great.

Some people might add a couple of garlic cloves or some sprigs of thyme to this dish, and it’ll be delicious as well.

Let’s check this month’s second mussels’ recipe after last week’s pasta with mussels in tomato sauce! What about you prepare it for Christmas this year?

 

Creamy Moules Marinieres Recipe

Serves 3 – 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 kg mussels, cleaned
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 2 tbsp cooking cream
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt flakes to taste
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 small chopped onions

Method:

  1. Melt butter in a pot and add the onions and bay leaves. Stir until soft. Add the mussels, white wine, cream, parsley and salt flakes.
  2. Cover the pot and let the mussels cook for around 10 minutes. Give the pot a good shake from time to time.
  3. Serve hot with crusty bread.

Pear and Blue Cheese Salad Recipe

Pears and blue cheese salad Recipe picture

Meet my new favorite salad!

Meet my new favorite salad! For blue cheese lovers, this salad is a must-try!

I never thought blue cheese could be so delicious when paired with honey mustard dressing, until yesterday.

I had (and still have)  two delicious blue cheeses in my fridge – gifts from France: two beautiful stinky cheeses that taste incredibly good, and way better than any blue cheese I had tried before.

I wanted to try something new. I usually use this kind of cheese in blue cheese pasta or in endives and blue cheese salad recipe.

But since it’s the #30Days30Salads challenge, I needed to prepare a salad, so I decided to focus on adding sweetness to the strong flavor of the cheese. The result was unexpected!

Let’s check the recipe together!

Pear and Blue Cheese Salad Recipe

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups salad greens – I used mizuna, you can replace with mixed greens, baby spinach, lettuce or rocket leaves
  • 1 pear
  • 50 g blue cheese (more or less according to taste) – believe me, invest in good quality cheese!
  • 2 tbsp coarsely chopped walnuts

To prepare the dressing:

  • ½ tsp honey
  • ½ tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste

Method:

  1. To prepare the dressing, mix the mustard and honey until combined. Pour the lemon juice and mix again then add the olive oil and blend. Season the dressing with salt and pepper.
  2. Crumble the blue cheese using a fork.
  3. Cut the pear into thin slices.
  4. Put the greens in a serving dish. Top with the pears, walnuts and blue cheese.
  5. Pour the dressing over the salad and serve.

Are you a fan of blue cheese? And would you try this salad? Leave us your thoughts in the comments box!

Mint Raita Recipe

Mint Raita Picture

Perfect cooling effect after hot dishes!

Raita is a famous Indian side dish with a cooling effect, usually much appreciated after trying a very hot or spicy dish.

Raitas are versatile. They consist of yogurt that is seasoned with herbs or spices: mint, cumin, cayenne pepper…  The yogurt can be mixed with different kinds of raw or cooked vegetables or even fruits: cucumber, pineapple, eggplant…

The closest approximation in our cuisine in the yogurt and cucumber salad that we usually serve next to the kibbeh bel Siniyyeh, seasoned with dried mint.

Bur raitas do not rely on dry mint; they use “mint sauce”. As I am not familiar with this ingredient, I googled it: “A sauce traditionally made from finely chopped spearmint leaves, soaked in vinegar and some sugar. It can also contain lime juice and raspberries”.

Unfortunately, I could not find mint sauce in the supermarket, but I found something called mint jelly (Tesco brand from Spinneys), so I decided to give it a try. Apparently, it’s used as well.

Let’s check together this super easy recipe that I served next to my Indian chicken and onions. And why not try it next to red lentils and cauliflower curry?

Mint Raita Recipe

Serves: 1 – 2

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup yogurt
  • 4 tbsp water
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp mint sauce
  • Mint leaves to garnish

Method:

  1. Pour the yogurt in a small bowl and beat it using a fork. Gradually add the water while beating.
  2. Add the onion, salt and mint sauce and mix well.
  3. Garnish with fresh mint leaves.

Best Cheesecake Recipe

cheesecake with strawberries picture

Take your time to decorate your cheesecake, this will make all the difference!

Now this is one dessert that never failed to please!  Here’s the recipe for a simple no-bake cheesecake, very easy to prepare, and that will amaze your guests.

As you will see, I use light cream cheese and light biscuits. After several trials, I found that this was the best combination, since the filling is really sweet. But you can use the regular ones of course.

Beware! You are not getting a thick cheesecake, like the ones served in restaurants or coffee shops. But it’s going to be much better, it’s a promise!

I usually prepare it one day ahead. And there’s no need to freeze it! I just leave it in the refrigerator for the night.  I decorate it on the same day, preferably just before serving it. You can use any topping you like; my favorite is a mix of strawberry jam and fresh strawberries.

One more thing, be careful when using gelatin. I have added to my recipe all the steps that you need to follow. Please make sure the gelatin has completely melted before adding it to your filling, otherwise, you’ll end with some unpleasant lumps ruining your cheesecake.

Best cheesecake recipe

Serves: 6-8

Ingredients:

To prepare the crust:

  • 400 g light Digestive biscuits minus 8 biscuits
  • 180 g soft butter

To prepare the filling:

  • 400 g Light Philadelphia cream cheese
  • 2 envelopes powdered whipping cream (I use Dream whip)
  • 200 g sweetened condensed milk (I use Nestle)
  • 2 tbsp powder milk
  • 2 gelatin sheets
  • 2 cups very cold water
  • ½ cup hot water

To garnish:

  • ¼ cup strawberry jam
  • 2 tbsp warm water
  • Fresh strawberries as needed

Method:

  • To prepare the crust: crush your biscuits in a food processor. Add the soft butter and mix until dough forms. Line the bottom of a 23 cm springform pan with a piece of baking paper that is bigger than the base. Close the sides of the pan and press the dough on the baking paper. Chill.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the filling: soak the gelatin sheets in 2 cups of cold water for 5 to 10 minutes. Once soft, remove from cold water and wring gently to remove excess water. Put in ½ cup of hot water and leave to melt completely. Mix the cream cheese, whipping cream, sweetened condensed milk and powder milk in your food processor, or using an electrical mixer. Once you’re sure that the gelatin has completely melted, add it to the cream cheese mixture and blend well. Pour the filling over the crust and cover with foil or cling film. Refrigerate for a whole night.
  • Remove your cheesecake from the fridge before serving it. Discard the foil or cling film. Remove the sides of the springform pan. The baking paper that you used will make it very easy to remove the cheesecake from the base of the pan, and then you can discard the paper and place your cheesecake on a serving dish.
  • Mix the jam with the water and spread it on top of your cheesecake. Slice the strawberries and decorate your cheesecake to your convenience. Serve immediately!

Crab and Mango Salad Recipe

Crab and mango salad picture

The perfect salad: a combination of flavors in one plate

My stepmom wanted a special salad that would be a hit for our Christmas dinner tomorrow, so I said “why not try my crab and mango salad?”

This salad is very similar to the Crab salad with sesame oil dressing recipe that I posted before, but is richer in taste, and fancier of course, since it uses mango instead of oranges. When I prepared it last time and posted the picture on Instagram, many asked for the recipe, so here it is! And sorry for the delay!

A friend told me that the number of servings for the old crab salad was a bit too much. She was right, but I was serving it as a starter. I don’t really believe there is one right number of servings. It always depends on how much you’re willing to eat, and if you’re serving it as starter or as a main. So please always adjust the quantities according to the number of your guests and their appetite – or yours!

Crab and mango salad recipe
Serves: 4- 5

Ingredients:

  • 16 crab sticks (Use some Siblou Regular or Premium sticks)
  • 2 cucumbers
  • 1 leafy lettuce (lollo rosso)
  • ½ mango
  • 2 carrots

To prepare the dressing:

  • Few drops of sesame oil
  • 130 ml lemon juice
  • 2.5 tsp light mayonnaise
  • 2.5 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2.5 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and white pepper to taste

Preparation:

  1. Tear the leafy lettuce leaves with your hands. You can cut them into smaller pieces. (I usually cut each leaf in half). Transfer to your serving bowl.
  2. Shred the crab sticks thinly and put them over the lettuce leaves.
  3. Slice the cucumbers thinly and shred the carrots. Decorate the sides (edges) of your serving bowl with them.
  4. Peel the mango and cut it into thin slices. Decorate the center of the salad with the mango slices.
  5. To prepare the dressing, combine all ingredients in a small jar and close it well. Be careful when adding the sesame oil, as it has a very strong flavor.
  6. Shake the jar for 20 seconds then open it. Taste your dressing and adjust the seasoning.
  7. Dress your salad just before serving!