Sunday, 2 December 2012

Santa's Breakfast

Budino di Semolina al Forno con Biscotti di Natale, Mandorle, Frutti Secche & Glassa di Mandarina e Miele
Baked Semolina with Spekulatius, Apricot, Almonds, Raisins & Citrus Honey Glaze

Woke up this morning to a find a snowy cityscape awaiting me outside of my Frankfurt window... brrr! Echoes of "White Christmas" and "Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow..." actually playing upstairs at the neighbors... and I just couldn't help thinking, "Stop" This is waaay too early!"

But still... I was up, I was hungry... and I was cold! So of course my first thought was of oatmeal... nothing better in the Winter, right? Well... maybe this here could be considered a little bit better:-) Hot, steamy, creamy semolina, with chunks of spiced Christmas cookies, dried fruits, crunchy almonds and a zesty honey glaze... It doesn't sound that bad actually, does it?

This was probably made quicker than the oatmeal would have been too- with next to no prep work other than a little chopping, the whole thing is prepared in just a half an hour... sounds good, right?

First things first- turn on the oven and get a couple of cupfuls of water boiling in a small saucepan- amazing! You are multi-tasking! Next, the dried fruit. I decided to use apricots, which I cut into quarters and raisins, but you can use others if you prefer. By now the milk was boiling, so I sprinkled in the semolina, stirring all the time, until it began to thicken. As soon as I noticed it thickening, I removed it from the heat... I knew it would happen quickly- and before I knew it, there was a steaming pan of hot semolina right there, where seconds earlier, simple boiling milk had been!

I added cinnamon, a pinch of salt, Stevia (you can use sugar of course), and all of the other ingredients, stirred them together quickly and turned it all out into a baking dish. I smoothed it down a little- it WILL be clumpy- and then sprinkled a layer of slivered almonds on top. Then into the oven it went, at around 300°- just nice and hot, so that everything warms through- no fussing!

Whilst the oven was doing it's stuff on the semolina, I got busy with making a little glaze out of mandarin orange juice, mandarin orange zest and honey. I cut some of the peel into a strip, which I flattened down and cut into fine slices. I poured boiling water over them and let them sit for 3-4 minutes, then poured off the water and poured away some bitterness- as well as probably some pesticides- lol! I then popped these, along with the juice and some honey, into a little saucepan and let it boil down to a syrupy consistency. I then poured this over the almond topping and turned on the broiler for a minute or two... and that was it!

So Santa- I have dedicated this breakfast to you... Make sure you have a nice gift for me come the holidays! Who knows- I may even invite you over for dinner?

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