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This morning when Fergal and I were putting away the groceries and there were 3 jars of tahini he said I was a ‘tahini monster’.
He has a point. I do love tahini. After mayonnaise, tahini based sauces are my next go-to.
So when I spotted the ‘TMT sauce’ in Sarah Wilson’s book ‘Simplicious’. I had to make my own. It’s really good. There’s the creamy nuttiness from the tahini, the salty / savoury umami complexity from the miso and the fresh vaguely ‘curry’ flavour from the turmeric.
And it’s super versatile!
I’ve mainly used it on veggies like the raw kale pictured above and it’s amazing with my Super Tender Broccoli or with Poached Eggs. I also imagine it would be lovely with chicken fish, or even a juicy steak. It really is that versatile.
Tahini and miso paste are easily found in most supermarkets in Australia. But if they’re new ingredients to you, they’re both worth tracking down (although if I had to choose between them I use tahini more than miso).
They both keep for ages in the pantry.
Here are 7 Delicious Ways to Use Miso Paste.
Most people start using this sesame seed paste to make Hummus. But it’s also really lovely in my Roast Cauliflower Hummus if you prefer a Lower Carb option. I also love it in this salad dressing, as a sauce for salmon, drizzled over stuffed sweet potatoes, in a stir fry, to jazz up good old ‘avo on toast‘ and in this heavenly Tahini Yoghurt Sauce.
Are you a miso and / or tahini fan? Are they easy to find in your neck of the woods? Let me know in the comments below.
If you like tahini, I can’t recommend this sauce enough. If something were to happen and I couldn’t eat mayo again, this would be my new go-to condiment. Like I said above, it’s really versatile, you won’t have any problems finding uses for it!
makes more than 1 cup
takes 10 minutes
1/2 cup tahini
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons miso paste
1cm chunk fresh Turmeric or 1 teaspoon turmeric powder (optional)
1. Place tahini, water, miso and turmeric (if using) in a bottle or blender. Using a stick blender or your regular blender / food processor puree until smooth. You can mix by hand but it’s hard to get the miso completely emulsified so your sauce will be a little lumpy.
2. Taste and season if needed, although I find the miso provides enough salt. Keeps in the fridge for weeks. Will thicken a little over time and if you’re using fresh turmeric the colour will intensify over time too.
no miso – replace with soy sauce and decrease the water slightly so the sauce isn’t too runny. This soy version is pretty good but given the choice I’ll take miso every time.
garlicky – feel free to add 1-3 cloves garlic. I prefer it without but that’s just me.
no tahini – try blending the miso and turmeic into your favourite mayonnaise instead. Use 1 cup mayo to replace the tahini and water.
lemony – you could add a little lemon juice but I find the turmeric adds enough freshness without needing the extra acid.
Have you met my new friend, the mezcalita? She’s fun like a margarita, but smoky, spicy and more mysterious. I got to know her this summer on a trip to Mexico City. The mezcalitas varied from restaurant to restaurant, but they were all more orange-forward than your standard limey margarita, with spicy salted rims.
Naturally, I figured out how to make my own mezcalitas when I got back. I discovered a small mezcal selection at a nearby liquor store (right by the tequila) and purchased a mild, mixable mezcal called Vida. I went home and flipped the proportions of citrus juice in my favorite margarita recipe, to make them taste more like orange than lime.
Mezcalitas aren’t complete without a spicy, salty rim around the glass, so I lined mine with either Tajín (a zingy Mexican salt and spice blend that you can find in the Hispanic aisle at the grocery store) or the chili powder and salt combination you see here. I prefer Tajín, since the citric acid packs a sour punch, but chili powder and salt is an easy homemade option.
Up until Mexico City, I had crinkled my nose at Ali‘s mezcal drinks and dismissed them as “too smoky.” I’m certainly no mezcal connoisseur yet, but I’m learning. If you’re interested in mezcal, this drink is a great place to start!
What the heck do you call such a colorful side? Colorful coconut coleslaw? More specifically, hot pink coconut coleslaw? Radical coconut slaw? I don’t know, but coconut slaw doesn’t do it justice. I do know that if you are a coconut fan, you should make this as soon as possible. You’ll be glad you did!
I already went on about how amazing they were, but everything at that restaurant is amazing. I would eat breakfast, lunch and dinner there if I could. I would apprentice there to learn all of their secrets if I could.
Anyway, Hola Arepa topped tostadas with poblano-avocado spread and a “ceviche” made with fresh strips of coconut meat marinated in lime. I don’t know where to buy fresh coconuts, and even if I did, I’m fairly certain I would lose a finger trying to slice it.
I used big, dried, unsweetened coconut flakes instead. Given that I had to stop myself from inhaling this giant bowl of coleslaw in one sitting, I’d say that it worked.
Is it just me, or have you ever had the feeling you’re being stalked? By a cake?
At the risk of sounding a little ‘cray cray’, I’m going to put it out there and say this cake has been following me.
First at a friend’s dinner party in the form of little individual cakes with poached oranges on top. And then just a few days later it turned up at our Tuesday morning playgroup.
I’m not suspicious but I do take coincidences seriously. Especially coincidences involving cake.
And since I’ve been getting really lovely oranges from the farmers market this Winter, I figured the universe was telling me to make an Orange & Almond Cake for my Birthday treat this year.
If you’re new to Stonesoup, I have a tradition to share a special Birthday Cake recipe.
So to celebrate my birthday on Friday…
This year it’s my ‘stalker’ Orange and Almond Cake which is an adaptation of Claudia Rodens classic gluten-free cake using boiled oranges to add flavour and keep everything lovely and moist. It’s a really beautiful cake.
If you’d like more Birthday Cake inspiration here are some from recent years:
I love love love this cake. It’s fresh and zesty from the orange and super super moist. That being said, my small boys weren’t into it at all. I think they can sense when there isn’t any sugar.
It did feel a little blasphemous messing around with Claudia Roden’s classic recipe. But a diabetic girl has to do what she has to do. And so I experimented until I finally found a sugar-free / stevia based cake I was happy with.
The secret was to add butter, of course (shouldn’t I know by now that the secret is always to add butter). But if you’re not into stevia, you don’t need to miss out. Just skip down to the ‘real sugar variation’ Claudia has you covered.
enough for 8
takes 3 hours
2 oranges (450g / 1lb)
250g (9oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
250g (9oz) almond meal
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon pure stevia powder
1. Place oranges in a medium saucepan. Cover with water and simmer, covered for 90 minutes. Drain and cool a little.
2. Preheat your oven to 180C (350F). Grease and line a round 24cm (9in) spring form pan.
3. Chop oranges in half and remove any seeds. Puree oranges in your food processor, until you have a nice smooth paste. Chop butter and add to the food processor. Puree until well combined.
4. Add eggs and puree again until smooth. Add almond meal, baking powder and stevia and stir until just combined.
5. Scoop mixture into the prepared pan. Smooth the top with a spoon.
6. Bake on the middle shelf for 30-40 minutes or until cake feels slightly springy and a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
7. Cool in the tin.
real sugar / no stevia – replace butter with 250g (9oz) caster sugar and skip the stevia. May take much longer to bake (Claudia’s recipe is for an hour).
no food processor – you might get away with a stick blender but you really need something to puree the oranges.
oranges with seeds – make sure you remove before and discard before pureeing.
large oranges – if your oranges weigh more than 450g (1lb), weigh your puree and discard any excess.
different citrus – can imagine blood oranges would be lovely. And will have to try it with cumquats next time the fruit on my tree is ripe.
nut-free – you should be able to use flour instead of the almond meal, you might want to replace it with some flour and some extra butter to make sure the cake doesn’t dry out. And test for doneness earlier than expected.
egg-free – unless your an experienced egg-substituter, I wouldn’t try it with this cake.
With lots of Birthday love,
September already? Could it be? September is possibly the best month for fresh produce. Below, you’ll find plenty of inspiration to fire up your oven, and maybe even your favorite orange squash.
But first, some news: Cookie and Kate is now hiring a communications manager! My amazing assistant Meaghan is moving on, and I’m looking for some help, preferably local to Kansas City. Do you know the perfect candidate? Please pass this information along. Details here.