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🍊 A Really Good Orange Pound Cake
Bonus Recipe - Spicy Avocado Cucumber Salad + What I Cooked This Week + Read & Watch
This last week has been an infinite loop of deadlines, creating recipes and videos for clients. But amidst all the cooking and shooting, I did manage to visit a couple of places for some good food and wine!
I finally visited Burnt Honey Bakery up the coast in Copacabana. I reached there at 11:30 and most things were sold out but I did manage to bring back a box full of treats - organic Focaccia slabs, Pastel de natas, Dutch Apple Tart, White Chocolate Cake, Caramelized Pumpkin Quiche, Chocolate Croissants and a lovely Oat Sourdough.
No visit to Copa is complete without lunch at Ocean Bar Cantina, a laid-back Spanish tapas bar with a really chill vibe. I love their House Sangria and this time around we had Spanish grilled Octopus, Cauliflower Steak with Chimichurri and Spanish Chicken With Olives. Their Patatas Bravas are incredible too!
We dined at Enoteca 128, a swanky little Italian wine bar in Neutral Bay. I had the most delicious smoked eggplant stuffed Zucchini flowers and a gorgeous wine called Valpolicella. Bellissimo!
And so, Cooking Session No 39 almost didn’t happen. But better late than never!
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Almost a hundred messages requesting this recipe and thousands of hearts when I shared a video of me slicing into this gorgeous cake, still warm from the oven! Well, you didn’t have to wait too long. This easy orange pound cake is baked with juicy navel oranges, it’s golden buttery crumb is perfectly moist and the top is nicely browned with that sugary crunch. I’ve got all the tips to make sure it rises no matter what and produces that beautiful crack on top.
This cake is very loved in lunchboxes and makes a delightful dessert, warmed up and served with ice cream.
What I Cooked This Week
A lighter Chinese Cashew Chicken - Less oil, less salt but all the big flavours and packed with veggies, this Cashew Chicken is a great weeknight meal for the whole family.
A Tomato Garlic Dal - Creamy, luscious lentils cooked with lots of tomato and garlic and spices and topped with more caramelized garlic slices. Full of oomph and utterly comforting!
Oven Baked Miso Salmon - What you cook when you don’t feel like cooking! Maximum flavour for just sticking things in the oven, a buttery, umami Japanese meal perfect with steamed rice.
And finally, lots and lots of Focaccia Tests with thick slabs full of air pockets! And glorious, juicy sandwiches you can make with them. Recipes coming very soon.
Things To Cook, Watch, Read, Learn …
Fried Rice in the Air Fryer? I really want to try this!
Can you imagine the flavours in this Tomato Garlic Focaccia??
And finally, a Dump & Bake Tuscan Orzo.
I am a HUGE animation nerd, we went and watched Spider-Man : Across The Spiderverse and it did not disappoint! Even better than the first part, the animation is artsy and edgy, the music is beautiful and of course the story is solid.
Currently also rewatching Frasier with the boys and enjoying their appreciation of this witty show that will forever be my favourite.
This week, I am exploring these cookbooks
Simple Pasta - Odette Williams
Kolkata : Recipes From The Heart Of Bengal - Rinku Dutt
Love is a Pink Cake - Claire Ptak
“Live More Veg”, the paid section of my newsletter is filled with brand new, veg-loving recipes from my ongoing online cookbook plus weekly cooking inspiration to get you cooking and eating more fruit and veg. More than 80 exclusive recipes in a year, delivered every week to your inbox!
Spicy Avocado Cucumber Salad / Serves 4
If you are a fan of the famous Smacked Cucumber Salad, you MUST try this version with avocados. It is so creamy and spicy and delicious … yet very fresh!
It is worth buying Chinkiang vinegar (also known as Chinese black vinegar) and Gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes and .. currently my number one spice in the spice drawer!). Chinkiang vinegar is dark and malty and a tad sweet and gets its complex flavour from the process of ageing. If you can’t find it, substitute with rice wine vinegar.
2 Lebanese cucumbers
2 Shepard avocados
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons Chianking vinegar
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 teaspoon red chilli flakes
1 teaspoon Gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes)
¼ cup chopped coriander
1 teaspoon of mixed white and black sesame seeds
Trim the ends of the cucumber. Slice it in half lengthways and scoop and discard the seeds.
Slice each half in 1cm pieces. Add them to a serving bowl.
Cut each avocado in half and discard the seed. Slice each half into 1 cm slices and scoop them into the bowl.
Prepare the dressing by mixing garlic, soy sauce, Chiangking vinegar and sesame oil in a bowl and mixing well. Drizzle dressing over the salad and toss lightly.
Prepare the chilli oil by heating peanut oil on low-medium heat in a small saucepan. Add chilli flakes and Gochugaru and heat for a few seconds until the chilli starts sizzling and is fragrant. Remove from heat and pour over the salad.
Garnish with coriander and sesame seeds and serve immediately.