Caribbean · Comfort Food · Pasta · Pies · Side Dishes · Vegetarian

Mac’n’Cheese Pie

Now, here is a family favourite that never gets old! It is meant to be eaten as a side dish with your meat and hard food, but in this house it is just as often eaten as a main course with a nice salad on the side.

It does take a bit of time to prepare and cook the Mac’n’Cheese Pie, but 45 minutes of the total time is the baking of the dish in the oven. And to be fair, everything can be prepared in advance so that all you need is to bake it off when it’s time to eat. Alternatively, you can pre-bake it and just heat it up before serving. Best of all – you can even make a big batch and put a few portions in the freezer for quick lunches or a day when there’s just no time to cook.

Please note, this recipe is listed as vegetarian, but it does have dairy products and eggs in it. If this is a no go for you, skip the eggs and substitute the dairy with dairy free alternatives.

This recipe makes 8 portions of Mac’n’Cheese.

Ingredients:

  • 1 litre (10dl) dried short cut macaroni
  • 6 tbsp butter, plus a little extra for greasing
  • 6 tbsp white flour
  • 1 litre (10dl)  milk
  • 2 dl cream
  • 1 tbsp mild mustard
  • (1 teaspoon ground cinnamon)
  • 5+7dl cheese, grated
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 dl scallions (or onion), finely chopped
  • 1 dl peas (optional)
  • 1 dl chopped plum tomatoes (canned or fresh)
  • 2 dl sliced yellow and/or red peppers
  • 2 dl sweet corn
  • salt
  • pepper
  • seasoning of your choice
  • (fresh parsley, chopped (to garnish)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  2. Boil the macaroni for 8 minutes in lightly salted water (it should be al dente but not crunchy inside) Rinse under cold water and drain.
  3. Melt 4 tbsp butter in a pan and stir in the flour. Add the cream and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring vigorously. Then gradually add the milk and keep whisking until the sauce boils and thickens.
  4. Stir in mustard, (cinnamon), salt and pepper to taste, and half the cheese, then remove from the heat. Keep stirring until the cheese has melted, then add the beaten eggs and fold them into the mixture until you have a smooth, well mixed thick sauce. Pour the sauce over the macaroni and fold together.
  5. Melt 2 tbsp butter in the frying pan and cook the vegetables on low to medium heat for 5-10 minutes. If you are using peas, add them after the rest of the veg have been cooked, then season the mixed veg to taste with salt, pepper and your favourite seasoning.
  6. Pour half of the mac’n’cheese into a greased ovenproof dish. Spread the veggie mix evenly over the base layer, and top with second layer of the remaining mac’n’cheese.
  7. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese all over the top layer and bake in the oven for 45 minutes, or until the top is golden and bubbling.
  8. Sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley before serving (optional)

Serve as a side dish with your Sunday roast, or as a vegetarian main course with a seasonal salad.

Baking · Comfort Food · Desserts & Puddings · Swedish

Kladdkaka or Swedish Sticky Chocolate Cake

This cake is so easy to make that even the kids can be allowed to have a go. It was my birthday yesterday and my youngest daughter who we don’t normally let loose in the kitchen made this for our evening coffee. Simply divine!

Kladdkaka, a sticky chocolate cake, is a traditional Swedish fika (our word for the daily coffee/tea breaks we enjoy and love to share with friends and family) favourite. Almost impossible to ruin (unless you leave it in the oven for too long) and very quick and easy to make. It doesn’t even take very long to clean up after.

The cake is delicious served warm with ice cream, whipped (or even clotted) cream, but can also be served cold just as it is. When you have surprise visitors popping in, you can pop a cake in the oven and be ready to serve it just over half an hour later. How cool is that! =)

Ingredients:

  • 100 g butter
  • 2 1/2 dl (1 UK cup) caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 dl (0.6 UK cup) plain flour
  • 3 tbsp cocoa
  • 1 tsp vanilla sugar
  • icing sugar to decorate

Directions:

  1. Turn the oven on at 175° Celcius (350 F/gas mark 4).
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan.
  3. Take the saucepan off the hob and stir in the sugar and the eggs.
  4. Add all other ingredients (apart from the icing sugar) and mix to a nice smooth “gooey” consistency.
  5. Pour the mixture into a breaded or papered oven tray.
  6. Bake in the middle of the oven for approximately 20 minutes

You should end up with a fairly low cake that has a slightly crispy crust and a sticky inside. Once it has cooled down a little you can sprinkle some icing sugar over it and serve with cream, ice cream and/or berries and/or fruit. Or whatever else you might like to serve with a chocolatey sticky cake, really. I promise it’ll be a hit! =)

Caribbean · Chicken

Scandiribbean BBQ Beer Batty Chicken

For those of you who don’t speak much patois, maybe I should first of all explain that batty is the patois word for your backside. The name of the dish comes from the fact that the chicken gets a beer can stuffed up its batty and is thus steamed and roasted at the same time.

This is an absolutely gorgeous dish that you just have to try! As the chicken gets steamed and roasted at the same time, the meat comes out juicy and succulent in a way you hardly knew chicken could be. It’s also great because you can play around with the ingredients and choose your favourites or make it slightly different every time you cook it.

Best of all – it takes very little time to make!

Ingridients:

  • a whole chicken
  • seasoning of your choice
  • a can of guinness (or any other beer really)
  • a few cloves of garlic
  • escallion
  • salt & pepper
  • chillies or pepper sauce
  • olive oil

Directions:

  1. Prepare and season the chicken the way you like it best. Don’t forget to rub seasoning under the skin. Leave the chicken to season for as long as you like – we would normally let it soak in a mix of grated onion, herbs and chillies or scotch bonnet pepper for up to three days. Or more if John gets his way.
  2. When it’s time to cook, start by preheating your oven to 240°C/475°F/gas 9 or getting the BBQ started
  3. Open the top of the beer can with a can opener and pour just over 1/3 of the beer into a glass. This you can either drink whilst cooking or pour into the rice or hard food or whatever you are cooking for a side.
  4. Put salt, pepper, chillies, garlic cloves, escallion and herbs (or whatever mixture of flavours you would prefer) into the can
  5. Gently lower the chicken over the can, so that it sits firmly on the beer can
  6. Pour the remaining seasoning from the bowl the chicken was in into a cup and add some olive oil
  7. Brush some oily seasoning over the chicken
  8. Put chicken in the oven and turn the heat down to 200°C/400°F/gas 6 and cook the chicken for about an hour and a half. Brush some more oily seasoning mixture over it ever half hour. If you’re using the BBQ put it on top of a small oven tray to keep it from toppling over, put the lid down and follow the same procedure as for the oven.

When the chicken is done, cut it into nice pieces and serve with savoury rice, rice & peas, roast potatoes, hard food or whatever tickles your taste buds. I can promise that you’re in for a treat!

Uncategorized

50.000 visitors can’t be wrong…

Amazingly, we have just had our 50.000 visitor here in my kitchen and over the weekend we celebrated the occasion by giving the site a long overdue, and well deserved, redecoration. We hope you guys will like it just as much as we do.

Evalena’s Scandiribbean Kitchen started in May 2008 as a desperate attempt to find a way of storing my recipes so that I would always know where to find them. And to clear up some space in my shoe box size flat. Within a week, the blog had been visited by over a 100 people, and I couldn’t believe my eyes when every time I logged on the statistics had gone up even more.

John and I are passionate about food. We love to eat it, cook it, talk about it and share our passion with other people, but we never imagined a blog about our food would be this popular. We would like to say our humblest thanks to each and every one of you and we promise we’ll try to add new recipes and information about special ingredients more often. As a special treat, we will also be launching our Scandiribbean food shop soon!

Happy cooking and bon appetit!