Monday, November 30, 2009

Brussels sprouts

When I see brussels sprouts on the market I know the winter has arrived. I love brussels sprouts and this is probably the most simple and super delicious way of preparing them. I found this recipe in Good Food magazine (Dec. 2008), it was not actually a recipe, more like a tip.

Steamed Brussels sprouts
serves 2, side dish 
400 gr brussels sprouts
some olive oil (or butter)
freshly grated nutmeg

Remove bad looking leaves from sprouts and cut them in half (or keep whole). Steam for about 20 minutes (longer if whole). Heat a pan, add olive oil and steamed sprouts. Grate some nutmeg over, salt, mix well, cook for 2 minutes and serve.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Cauliflower and carrot salad

I have attacked my pile of food-magazines and am cooking everything I find interesting. I have mostly BBC Good Food magazines but there are couple of Gourmet, Fine Cooking, Bon Appetit and one Essen & Trinken (German).

And to manage to go through the whole pile I am not buying any more food magazines until I am done with my existing pile. So look forward some magazine food around here.

This salad recipe is from BBC Good Food, December 2008. When I first read the recipe I liked it instantly, but was sceptic about the raw cauliflower. I just do not find raw cauliflower very tasty so I steamed it instead. I also left out the mayonnaise. Love this salad!

Cauliflower and carrot salad 
adapted from BBC Good Food
serves 2
1 cauliflower (about 400 gr)
1 big carrot
1 shallot
2 tsp capers
1 tbsp parsley, chopped

2 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp Dijon mustard
salt and pepper

Cut the cauliflower into small florets and steam for about 15 minutes, and when done let cool. Grate the carrot coarsely, chop the shallot and capers finely. In a small bowl whisk the lemon juice and Dijon mustard, add oil and season.

Put cauliflower, chopped shallot, capers and parsley in a big bowl and pour over the vinaigrette and mix well.

Saturday, November 28, 2009


Flautas are Mexican rolled, deep-fried tacos and they are beyond delicious! They can be made with various fillings and one of the classical is potato and chorizo.

Mexican chorizo is a raw pork sausage that is spiced with dried chilies, cumin, paprika and as it is hard to find it here in Munich, I made flautas with Spanish chorizo. They can also be made with wheat tortillas.

As I mentioned flautas are traditionally deep-fried until very crispy but I refuse to deep-fry corn tortillas, they are perfect as they are. Instead I use my cast iron pan and just couple of spoons of fat....über delicious!

serves 2
80 gr chorizo
about 2 dl waxy potatoes, cut in small cubes (0,5 cm)
salt and pepper
pinch of cayenne pepper
8 corn tortillas, about 11 cm in diameter and warm (when cold they break)
3 tbsp clarified butter, or fat you prefer for pan frying the flautas
3 tbsp crème fraîche (or sour cream) mixed with 1-2 tbsp milk
salad, thinly slices

Cook potatoes in water until done and drain. Cut the chorizo in small cubes as well and cook in a dry pan just until fragrant, 2 minutes. Add cooked potato, season and mix well. The potatoes should partially fell a part and get very well mixed with chorizo, they should not turn into mash.

Put some filling on one end of tortilla and roll, set aside with the seam down. Heat the cast iron pan, add clarified butter and let melt. Put the flautas in the pan, seam down, and cook turning until the tortilla gets some colour and crisp.
Put on a plate, top with sliced salad and drizzle the crème fraîche over.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Beluga lentils

Beluga lentils are one of my favourite lentils. The taste is wonderful, earthy and they only need 20 minutes to be done, which for a legume is a very short time. Just put them in a sauce pan, cover with water and cook on a low temperature for 20 minutes, no pre-soaking needed. They do loose some of their black magical colour when cooked, but the taste compensates for the colour loss.

I found this lentil salad recipe in the Good Food magazine (Nov. 2008), love it!

Warm lentil salad
adapted from BBC Good Food
serves 2
1,5 dl Beluga lentils
6 big mushrooms
1 red pepper
1 shallot
4 salad leaves, whole
50 gr goat´s cheese (or other favourite cheese)

2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

Put the Beluga lentils in a saucepan, cover with water and cook on low heat until done, about 20 minutes.
Mix lemon juice and mustard in a small bowl, slowly add olive oil, season with salt and pepper and set aside. Slice the mushrooms, shallot and cut the red pepper in small cubes. Heat some oil in a pan and cook mushrooms until they start softening, turn of the heat, add pepper, shallot and cooked lentils. Stir in the dressing and mix well.

On two plates arrange the salad leaves, spoon the lentil salad, add the cheese and serve!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Rose hip soup

This week I got to think of rose hip soup and I had to make it. Rose hip soup is Swedish traditional soup made of dried rose hips and eaten with almond cookies. It is usually sold ready-to-eat or as powder where you only need to add water and cook shortly.

But for my immediate crave here in Munich I was only able to find rose hip marmalade. So I simply made the soup with the marmalade, and yes it did work!

This marmalade is sweetened with agave syrup and two other fruit sweeteners made of apples and pears. So it was not overwhelming sweet like marmalade can be. I also served it with sliced almonds instead of almond cookies, yum!

Rose hip soup
serves 2

6 dl water
2 tbsp corn starch
5 tbsp rose hip marmalade
2 tbsp almond flakes

Dissolve corn starch in 2 tbsp cold water. Pour the rest of the water in a sauce pan and let boil. When the water boils take off the cooker and add corn starch, stirring all the time. Add the rose hip marmalade and return to the cooker, cook for couple of minutes until it thickens.
Pour into 2 cups and sprinkle almond flakes on top. Serve warm or cold.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Big pancake

I have been curious about the recipe for "big pancake" since I saw the recipe last winter at The Kitchen. It looked like a tasty addition to the weekend breakfast. I have tried making the pancake with 2 eggs (left) and 4 eggs (right), keeping the amount of milk and flour the same (1/2 cup).

And my boyfriend and I though that the pancake made with 2 eggs is best eaten with sweet things and the one made with 4 eggs with savoury things like cheese and salami as it is more eggy. So feel free to experiment! I also use clarified butter as the temperature is quite high and I do not fancy burnt butter.

Big pancake
recipe from The Kitchen
serves 2
2 eggs (or 4 if you like eggy-texture)
1 dl + 1 tbsp + 1 tsp flour (1/2 cup)
1 dl + 1 tbsp + 1 tsp milk (1/2 cup)
pinch of salt
2 tbsp clarified butter
a well seasoned cast iron pan, 22 cm

Whisk eggs and milk and add slowly to flour and salt. Avoid lumps. Put the cast iron pan in the oven and turn on 220 C. When oven is preheated add 2 tbsp clarified butter to the pan and return to the oven to melt. When melted take out the pan and swirl so that the butter coats all the sides. Pour in the batter, return to the oven and bake for about 20 minutes.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Sauerkraut soup

I have grown up eating sauerkraut every winter and I love it. Served as a salad to a hearty winter stew is a true comfort food to me. However I have never eaten cooked sauerkraut, but here in the south of Germany it is quite common. So when I found recipe for sauerkraut soup in a magazine called Eve I had to try it.

The recipe comes originally from a book called "33 magical soups" written by Marion Grillparzer. The soup turned out really excellent, it is definitely a new winter favourite. It is spicy, sour, sweet and pan fried apples give it a wonderful touch. But the dish is really filling so I think I would rather call it a stew...delicious stew that is!

Sauerkraut soup
serves 2
original recipe can be found here
1 onion

2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp flour
1/2 tbsp sweet paprika
1/2 tsp hot paprika
200 gr sauerkraut
1,5 dl dry white wine
6 dl vegetable or meat stock
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp caraway seeds
4 potatoes (about 250 gr)

1 apple
salt and black pepper
1 tsp honey
fresh marjoram (I used dried)

Cut onion in half and slice thinly. Cook in 1 tbsp oil until soft and transparent. Add the flour, both paprika and cook shortly until fragrant. Add sauerkraut and cook couple of minutes. Add wine, stock, bay leaf and caraway seeds. Cover and cook for about 45 minutes. After 30 minutes add peeled and cubed potatoes.

Cut the apple in thick slices, salt and pepper and pan fry in the rest of oil until they soften and get some color.

When the soup is done, season with honey, salt and pepper, serve in bowls and decorate with apples and marjoram.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Red pepper hummus

I have had a third of a jar of tahini (sesame paste) in my fridge for way to long time now. I use it only when making hummus so my use of it is quite limited. But in order to finally finish off that tahini jar I wanted a brand new hummus recipe. And I found it!

Hummus recipe I found on BBC Good Food calls for roasted red peppers. How delicious does not that sound? The recipe actually does not call for tahini at all, a bit strange but of course I added it. So with some minor changes this hummus recipe turned out so good that I am on my way to buy another tahini jar!

Red pepper hummus

adapted from BBC Good Food
serves 2

340 gr can chickpeas (with liquid)
2 red peppers
3 tbsp tahini
1 garlic clove
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin
juice of one lemon
salt and pepper

Roast the red peppers in oven, 180 C for about 40 minutes. When done put in a small bowl and cover with plastic film and let set for about 15 minutes. Peel the peppers, drain the chickpeas (reserve liquid) and with rest of ingredients blend in a blender until you have a semi smooth paste. Add some of the chickpea liquid, adjust the seasoning and blend until smooth.

Or if you do not have a blender, mash the chickpeas with a fork, pass through a strainer (hell of a job but worth it). Chop finely the peeled peppers, add to mashed chickpeas. Grate the garlic and add with the rest of the ingredients to the chickpeas. Add some chickpea liquid and blend well everything

To serve, spread on a plate, drizzle with some olive oil and eat with your favourite vegetables and pita bread.