Over the weekend I hosted my first crafternoon, with my version of a crafternoon being: making stuff (in this case dream catchers), hanging out with friends, and treats. Heaven in an afternoon.
Leading up to the weekend, I had a recipe in progress for the treats part … which turned out to be for heart-shaped banoffee tarts: as delicious as traditional banoffee pies, but subtle enough for seconds. I used low-fat ricotta instead of cream and maple syrup in place of a traditional caramel. To make things interesting and flavoursome I used ground hazelnuts and crushed Ginger Nuts biscuits in the bases.
Here’s the recipe:
Ginger hazelnut tarts with maple ricotta and banana
The Roaming Kitchen’s Nectarine Hazelnut Tart recipe (substituting the Digestive biscuits for Ginger Nuts).
500g low-fat ricotta
1/4 cup maple syrup
1-2 bananas (green at the tips)
1/3 cup maple syrup
extra crushed Ginger Nuts to sprinkle
- Preheat the oven to 180˚C. Grease or line 12-14 tart moulds of your choosing. I used heart-shaped moulds, but you could just as easily use a standard muffin pan.
- Prepare the tart mix using the The Roaming Kitchen’s recipe above. Line the tart moulds with the mix and bake for about 10 minutes. If the tarts brown quickly, you can lower the heat or turn off the oven in the last minute to avoid burning. Cool completely.
- Toss the walnuts in maple syrup and toast under the grill until golden. Cool completely.
- When ready to serve, combine the ricotta and maple syrup. Pipe the ricotta mix into the tarts.
- Slice the bananas and top each tart with a banana slice.
- For each tart, prop two walnuts against each slice of banana.
- Sprinkle the tarts with the extra crushed Ginger Nuts.
Makes 12-14 tarts.
The smell of baking coconut, manuka honey, and banana wafting from the oven was too heavenly to resist. I had to share this recipe. I had half a carton of buttermilk left over, so I decided to bake a banana loaf for the week’s snacks. The buttermilk, combined with baking soda would produce a nice, light loaf.
Always thinking of how to make food healthy, yet full of deliciousness, I added coconut oil, manuka honey, and walnuts to the mix. Manuka honey packs a nice punch in flavour, especially in low-fat baking. And nuts are always a treat!
Low-fat Manuka Honey Banana Bread
5 ripe bananas, mashed
2T Manuka honey
1T coconut oil (you can also use butter or oil)
1 egg, beaten
1 cup buttermilk
2t baking soda
1t baking powder
1 cup wholemeal flour
1 cup plain flour
10 crushed walnuts
- Preheat the oven to 180˚C. Grease a 12cm x 22cm loaf tin.
- Combine the bananas with the honey and coconut oil. Then mix in the egg.
- Combine the buttermilk and baking soda. Add this to the banana mix.
- Next add the flours and spices. Mix until the wet and dry ingredients are just combined.
- Stir in the walnuts.
- Transfer the mixture to the prepared loaf tin.
- Bake for 45 minutes, or until the loaf bounces back when lightly touched and an inserted skewer comes out clean.
Rushing out of Vic markets this week, some radicchios caught my eye. They looked so beautiful I had to go back for them. Once home, I rummaged around and found an excuse for my purchase: Yotam Ottolenghi’s Lentils, radicchio and walnuts salad – with NZ manuka honey! The warm red and yellow colours are a welcome sight in this cooler weather and the bitter radicchio is nicely balanced with the addictive honey-roasted walnuts.
Yotam Ottolenghi’s Lentils, radicchio and walnuts salad
However, if entertaining a group, I’d recommend this salad as a side dish as the bitter radicchio can be overwhelming in bulk, or to more sensitive palates. As per usual, I made my own cuts and curves to the recipe, substituting the pecorino fiore sardo with pan-fried haloumi, omitting the chilli, and adding baby spinach. The original recipe can be found on The Guardian website. Enjoy.
Yotam Ottolenghi’s lentils, radicchio, and walnuts with manuka honey recipe