Monday, October 24, 2011

Let's start with something sweet

Jewish holidays are over. Yesterday we finally got back to the blessed routine: school, kindergarten, work and job hunt. We had a lot of free time on our hands these past couple of weeks but we ended up not doing much with it. I'll summarize my holiday adventures (and recipes) in the coming post, which naturally is taking me ages to write.
For now I just want to share with you this great gluten-free brownies recipe that will ease up any crisis or post-holiday melancholy because it uses a lot of chocolate. My loyal readers already know that I come from a household of chocoholics and I keep looking for new opportunities to incorporate chocolate in our nutrition. I firmly believe that one day, scientists will declare that chocolate is good for you.  I have adapted the current recipe from Chef Michael Smith's book: "Chef At Home", which I highly recommend for its simple yet delicious everyday cooking.
250 gr dark chocolate
200 gr butter
1 cup flour divided to 1/3 soy flour, 1/3 tapioca flour and 1/3 corn starch.
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1.5 tea spoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
4 eggs
2 cups brown sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 180c (350F)
Melt in microwave the chocolate and butter then mix till smooth. While the chocolate mix cools whisk together the flours, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Add the eggs, sugar and vanilla to the chocolate and mix thoroughly. Stir in the flour mixture until incorporated. Pour batter into a lightly oiled and floured 9x13 inch tin. Bake for 25-30 minutes.
The brownies come out moist and fudgy, and taste great. 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Autumn Blues

Views of Caesarea in the autumn light

It has been a month and half since we got back from our great Canadian adventure. I'm still a bit overwhelmed. We went back straight to the rat race of modern living. School year started with new schools for my eldest child and my youngest, my DH got back to his highly stressful job, the house missed us when we were away and many things around here needed taking care of.
I also got back to job hunting; I hope my days as a stay at home mom are numbered. Although only now I became aware of the fact that looking for a position is a full time job. So much of my time now is spent on polishing my CV, going through e-mails and websites, preparing to interviews. It is an absolute change of pace. With it came a change of mood; celebrating the beginning of a new year (in Jewish tradition) renders me contemplative and prone to soul searching. The weather changes as well, when the scorching Israeli summer is less cruel. The days are still very hot but at night a cool breeze blows that makes one snuggle in the blankets. We don't sleep with the air-con on anymore. Some days a light drizzle washes the dust away.

A couple of weeks ago we've experienced a bit of Israeli autumn, while visiting the ancient city of Caesarea in the rain. The day was beautiful, it rained a little and then the sun came out and played hide and seek behind the clouds,causing the light to tint the sea in deep shades of blue. The ruins and mosaics were washed and their vivid colors sparkled, making it easy to imagine how grand this city must have been thousands of years ago.
Part of the Byzantine bathhouse marble floor 

 On the way back home, we saw along the highway the maritime squill blooming; as every child in Israel knows it is a sure sign that autumn is here if only for a short while.
 I hope it will rain. 

Maritime squill blooms alongside highway no. 2 

If you are Hebrew readers or just like my photography, check out my blog in Hebrew at traveling ibex .