A drizzly afternoon and my very rustic banana bread

The weather has yet again taken another cool turn with the past couple of days consisting of overcast, cloudy, gloomy and constantly drizzly weather.   So I figure with days like these I have no other choice but to grab my cardigan, switch the oven on and bake!

Not that I need an excuse to bake but I just find that when the weather is anything but welcoming outside I tend to gravitate home towards the reassuring allure of a comforting warm oven and the smell of wonderfully nurturing baked goods that emerge from it.  There really is no better way to spend a brisk, breezy, rainy afternoon than nestled aside the kitchen bench, serenely stirring a mixture that will soon become a gorgeously fragrant, comforting and very rustic banana bread.


Pistachio Sandies

 I’ve been meaning to share these wonderfully delicious, delicate, melt in your mouth and buttery pistachio sandies with you for a while however each and every time I bake a batch they seem to disappear before I’ve even had a chance to photograph them.  It seems they really are that delicious. 

These little green speckled buttery babies are very much like shortbread.  They possess the same wonderful melt in the mouth qualities of shortbread however are spiked with tiny pieces of wonderfully green pistachio that provides a gorgeous texture making them a fantastic biscuit in their own right.

These sandies are a delight to prepare and in a matter of mere minutes the sweet buttery dough is ready to be rolled and placed into a hot oven.  Fifteen minutes later wonderfully golden sandies emerge smelling of sweet vanilla, all that’s left is for the sandies to be rolled in icing sugar and dipped in an espresso. Enjoy K x

Pistachio Sandies
Adapted from Cannelle et Vanille

115 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup icing sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Zest of one lemon
3/4 cup plain flour
1/4 cup pistachios, chopped
pinch of salt
icing sugar, for rolling

Preheat oven to 180°C.  Cream the butter and icing sugar together until creamy, light and pale.  Add the vanilla extract and lemon zest and beat to combine.   Add the plain flour, salt and chopped pistachios and mix until combined and dough is formed.  Take tablespoon portions of the dough and form into balls.  Place balls on a baking tray lined with baking paper, leaving a 3 centimetre space between each ball.  Bake for 15-18 minutes or until lightly golden.  Allow to cool slightly and roll sandies in icing sugar while still warm.


My latest obsession & another heirloom tomato tart

Pistachios have long been one of my favourite ingredients, I adore them.  Another obsession I have, baked fruit crumbles.  I hold a very special place in my heart for a vintage ceramic dish filled with sticky, bubbling, gooey, caramelised fruit baked in a piping hot oven covered in a thick layer of golden, nutty, crunchy crumble topping.  That said a problem I’ve been grappling with of late is how to incorporate my beloved crumble into a steamy, scorching hot summer’s day.  The thought of jammy, sticky, piping hot fruit being retrieved from the oven is completely unappealing, especially considering there are days where the stinking hot temperatures have me believing I in fact live in an oven.  In truth there are days I purposely do not bake because the thought of turning on the inferno oven is utterly unbearable and would resemble a form of torture handed out in Guantanamo bay.


A peachy afternoon

This weekend I wanted to make use of each and every white fleshed peach perched on my kitchen counter.  For the past week R. and I have been trying our best to make our way through the fruit bowl full of the delicious, juicy and wonderfully sweet stone fruit but they just don’t seem to be disappearing.  So I decided a wonderfully relaxed Saturday afternoon spent at home in the kitchen would solve our stone fruit dilemma.