Friday, December 2, 2022

Pirojki with Meat and Rice - Baked

Nom nom. 


500 ml Milk
100 ml oil
2 tbsp yeast
2 eggs
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp salt
5 cups flour

finely chopped Onions
shredded Carrots
Greens (green onions, parsley, whatever) 

Egg plus 2 tbsp milk for egg wash

Sesame seeds for topping if desired


1. Combine all but the dough ingredients together in a stand mixer. Mix. let stand for about 5-10 minutes
2. Add flour.
3. Mix the dough until it's all mixed in and not too sticky. 
4. cover with saran wrap and a towel. 
5. Let sit until it rises - (1-2 hrs)

Make the filling: 

1. Fry onions and shredded carrots in a dutch oven with oil until soft. 
2. Add in meat, if raw - until cooked. If cooked, until warmed. 
3. Add salt and pepper to taste
4. Add rice
5. Mix
6. Add greens if you have any. 
7. Mix. 


Preheat oven to 350 F 

1. Divide dough in half. Then in half again. Should make about 20 or 24 Pirojki depending on size. Keep dividing until you have equal sized lumps. 
2. Roll out the lumps into dough circles. 
3. Pinch sides together and put on a sprayed silicon mat seam side down. You can make triangle, or elongated pirojki. If you have different filling or different spices, different shapes will help you differentiate the different kinds. 
4. Apply eggwash (whisk egg plus milk) with a brush and sprinkle sesame seeds on top
5. Make sure they are not touching as they will puff up. 
6. Bake for about 30 minutes. 

What we liked:

Yummy, fun, easy to reheat. 

What we didn't like:

Nothing, they were good. 

What Kaspian thought about it:

NOM NOM. He especially loves them with sriracha. 

Next time:

silicon mats work better than foil. 
Setting up the Netgear Nighthawk Mesh system to work as 3 nodes (access points) with the Nighthawk RAXE450 router 

Default IP for Netgear Nighthawk Mesh: - this is the IP you will need to access after factory reset. Factory reset with the router Mesh cube (with the ethernet and internet ports) plugged in but nothing else connected. Reset by holding the reset button for 50 seconds. Lights should change. 

Default username: admin
Default Pw: password

When you create a new password it MUST be 10 characters, have symbol and a capital letter. It will let you create a character that doesn't fit these criteria and then won't let you login, you will have to factory reset. 

When you get in, screen will look like this if the router cube is set up as ACCESS POINT - it says it on the top : 

To set it up as the Access Point, click "Advanced" Tab next to the "Basic" tab at the top. 

Then, click Advanced Setup and Wireless AP

Check the box "Enable AP Mode". Then, scroll down and select the first option to get the static IP from main router. Click APPLY in bottom right corner

This should have it function as the Access Point and work as a reflector for the wifi. 
Devices may be logged into either the WiFi for the Access Point or for the main router, either will work. The devices will be seen by both. 

After you set it up as the Access Point, you will plug it into the router using the INTERNET port.

You might have to go in and set it up as access point again under the new IP. to get the new IP to login into, either look in the router or the Nighthawk app. You can login to the new IP with the new credentials you created earlier and follow the steps above to se up as Wireless AP. This time it should stick. 

The IP of the MR60 will change, so you will have to look it up each time before logging into it. 

Sunday, April 3, 2022

Brioche Toast with Apple Creme Anglaise

Astrid and Alona went to the Dallas Arboretum last Thanksgiving week (2021). The day they were there, was chef demonstration and tasting day! They watched Chef Isabel (We think!) prepare an Apple Creme Anglaise with brioche toast.  It has taken a few months for the Dallas Arboretum to finally post the recipe, but they did and we made it and it is pretty amazing. Although tedious, it is well worth it. 

Brioche Toast with Apple Creme Anglaise

Lightly Toasted Brioche in a Cast Iron Pan

Anglaise with Rum Apples

Creme Anglaise

Egg yolks 

Milk cooking

Apples to be mixed with Rum!


1 loaf of Brioche Toast
2 eggs + a tad of cream, mixed to dip the brioche in to toast

2 apples, chopped into cubes or so - we used gala
1 - 1.5 cup of milk
0.5 cups of heavy cream, or so
6 egg yolks
1/4 cup of sugar - or so - you can change to taste
1/2 cup of rum
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla


1. Chop the apples
2. Place apples into a small pan, pour rum over them and cook until softened and alcohol has cooked out. Do not be alarmed if alcohol flambes (similar to bananas foster). 
3. Stir in Vanilla to apples
4. While apples are cooking, you can whisk together the sugar, egg yolks and cinnamon in a mixing bowl. Use a bowl that is heat resistant. 
5. Bring milk and cream to a boil. 
6. Very slowly ladle the hot milk mixture into the egg yolks while constantly whisking to temper the eggs. Do this until about half of the milk mixture remains. 
7. Now, slowly, pour the tempered egg mixture back into the milk pan, whisking constantly. If it begins to boil, lower the heat. 
8. Cook, stirring continuously, until the creme Anglaise begins to thicken. 
9. Turn off the heat and stir in the rum apples. 

10. Quickly dip the brioche toast pieces into egg or egg and cream and fry on a cast iron pan for just 20-30 seconds per side. 

11. Serve brioche toast with ladled apple anglaise on top. 

What we liked:

It is amazing. 

What we didn't like:

It is time consuming! And you have egg whites left over. 

What Kaspian, Astrid and Orion thought about it:

They absolutely LOVED it. 

Next time:

No changes, maybe make more!

Mashed Red Potatoes with Green Onions and Kerrygold Butter

These are delicious!


Red potatoes, we always steam
green onions, chopped
Heavy cream 
Cream Cheese
Sour cream
Kerrygold butter


Combine everything in a stand mixer with the whip attachment and whip together! Add Kerrygold butter on top. 

What we liked:


What we didn't like:

Nothing, it is great!

What Kaspian, Astrid and Orion thought about it:

Astrid was not too into it, but the boys loved the potatoes. 

Next time:

No changes needed

Store meat vs. Meat Market meat

We grilled the meat the exact same way, side by side. One was from the store, the other from a meat market. Guess which was from where. The taste was also IMMENSELY different. The texture was different as well of the two meats. 
Left is store. Right is Meat Market 

These are from the meat market, steak tips and steak

Meat Market steak

Meat Market Steak

Whole Roast Chicken with Garlic and Butter

We made a whole roast chicken for the fist time yesterday. It turned out quite yummy!
Our oven has a "roast" setting and we used that at 400 F. It turned out quite amazing. 


1 whole chicken
1 head of garlic peeled and chopped
1/4 cup melted butter
1/4 cup butter pieces
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup white wine
salt and pepper
1 lemon, halved


1. Preheat oven to 400F on Roast
2. Spray roasting pan or line with foil. 
3. Wash chicken and pat dry. Make sure to remove everything from cavities. 
4. Combine melted butter, olive oil, juice of half lemon, and white wine. Mix and pour on chicken, making sure to get inside the cavity and under skin. 
5. Place garlic and butter pieces under chicken skin and in cavity. 
6. Place chicken in pan breast side up. Place remaining half lemon into the cavity. 
7. Bake for about 1:10 minutes until juices from thigh run clear when speared. 
8. When cooked, let rest for 10 minutes out of the oven. 

We served with mashed potatoes, but it could be good with anything!

What we liked:

It was fun to make something new. The skin turned out great too!

What we didn't like:

Nothing, it was great. 

What Kaspian, Astrid and Orion thought about it:

They loved it. Astrid and Orion especially liked eating the chicken legs like barbarians :) 

Next time:

No changes needed. 

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Ptich'e Moloko (Birds Milk) Cake!

This cake does take a little bit to make...definitely make it the day before, because first of all, it needs to sit overnight, and second of all, it might not work the first time as needed so you might need to make it a few times to get the egg whites to where they need to be, so have extra egg whites for sure :) 

We used agar agar powder we got from our local International market - Talin. We got the telephone brand and that worked splendidly. 
Everyone loved the cake and the presentation is quite impressive. 

The original recipe can be found here:

We tried to have a sugar sculpture for topping, but after spending about 4 cups of sugar and a good couple of hours, we were not successful in creating a good sculpture... it may just be because it seems like they do not use straight sugar a lot of times but a sugar derivative to make the (not as good tasting) but more stable sculpture. If anyone has any ideas, we will gladly take em :) 

Final Cake!

Slice of Delicious Cake!

It was a Birthday, after all!

Ready to have toppings!


Ready to rest!

mmm the cake layers to be baked


For the Cake Layers

140 Grams flour
2 eggs
100 grams butter
100 grams sugar
1 tsp vanilla


460 Grams sugar
200 grams butter
100 grams sweetened condensed milk
160 ml water
2 egg whites
4 grams agar agar
1 tbs lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla

Chocolate Glaze: 

90 grams chocolate, dark or bitter preferred
50 grams butter

For decorations - fruits or berries, whatever you have! Or, you could also attempt the sugar sculpture that we had a vision but no talent for! :) 


1. Set 160 ml of water and add in 4 grams of agar agar. Leave to soak for approximately an hour.

Cake Layers: 

1. On two pieces of parchment paper, make a circle with a pencil of the size of your cake layers, we used about 9". Make sure to mark with pencil on the opposite side that you will be putting your batter onto. 
2. Preheat oven to 425 F
3. In a stand mixer, combine 100 grams of softened butter with 100 grams sugar and vanilla. 
4. Whis on high speed for a few minutes until combined. 
5. One at a time, add in the eggs, continue mixing. 
6. When combined, add in 140 grams of sifted flour. 
7. This will look like a cake mix now and should hold it's form. 
8. Divide the mixture into two, and spread into the shape of two circles on your parchment paper. Remember to keep the pencil markings on the under side. 
9. Bake each (or both at the same time) cake for about 8 to 9 minutes each until done.
10. If your cake has oozed out past the circle, you can now cut it to the shape you want. We used 9 inch rounds in a bigger springform so that the soufle would ooze around it. You can see that in the pictures, and if you are doing the same, then you don't need to cut it to a perfect circle. 
11. Cool completely. They will be thin, so this will not take long. 

Soufle *we had two people doing this step, one person doing the agar agar boiling and the other doing the egg whites): 

1. In the stand mixer bowl, combine 200g of softened butter wtih the 100g of sweetened condensed milk. 
2. Mix until creme consistnecy, it will be shiny and voluminous. 
3. Set aside for now. 
4. Bring the agar agar mixture we made earlier to a boil and mix until it reaches boiling. 
5. Add in the 460 g of sugar when all of agar agar is dissolved. 
6. Keep boiling until sugar is dissolved constantly stirring.
7. Boil until it reaches 230 degrees F or 110 Degrees C. This should take about 8 to 9 minutes. The mixture will foam and increase in volume. 
8. Place 70 grams of egg whites (about 2 to 3 eggs) into the stand mixer bowl.
9. Whip on high speed until they are slightly foamy. Add a tsp of cream of tartar. Keep mixing unitil stiff peaks. Add in the lemon juice tsp. Keep mixing. 
10. SLOWLY, on the side of the metal mixer bowl, pour in the agar agar mixture - should take about 30 seconds to fully pour it all in. 
11. You will see the whole mixture become denser, thicker, and increase in volume. It will also look very shiny. 
12. Add in the butter/sweetened condensed milk mixture we made earlier on LOW speed. 
13. When combined, stop mixing. 


1. Now, we need to work fast because this mixture will start to stiffen up due to the agar agar cooling down. So, work quickly and don't take a break! This is critical!
2. Get your springform pan, and line it with parchment paper, you can use your earlier parchment paper sheets that you baked on. 
3. Place one cake layer on the bottom. 
4. Pour in half of the Souffle mixture. 
5. Place the second cake layer on top.
6. Pour the rest of the souffle mixture on top. 
7. Spin the form around to settle the suffle while keeping the pan on the table, this will level out and settle the souffle. 
8. Place in the fridge and let it cool for a couple of hours. 

After it is cooled - add in the chocolate glaze

Chocolate glaze 
1. On a double broiler bring to a boil, and add in the 90 g chocolate and 50 g butter until well melted and combined. 

Pour the chocolate glaze over the souffle after the cake has cooled. 

Set in the fridge overnight. 

Decorate the next day with berries, sugar sculptures or fruit as desired. 


What we liked:


What we didn't like:

It is a lot of hard work - BUT WELL WORTH IT!!! It is important to time the egg whites stiffening and agar agar mixture boiling properly or you will lose one or the other or both. We had to try it several times to get it right, but so so so worth it, once again. 

What Kaspian thought about it:

YUM! All the kiddoes and adults loved the cake. 

Next time:

Next time - make it again! Yum!