Monday, April 30, 2012
The crème brûlée is a traditional French (and some say British) dessert, egg-yolk and cream based, that consists of a creamy rich mousse topped with sugar that gets burnt (caramelized) to create a crunchy crust on top. The contrast between the top crunch and the soft and gooey interior is charming.
Here we made it in its most classical version. From this base, you can make a whole variety of crème brûlée(s): with chocolate or mint or fruit flavors etc. Enjoy.
Last year: Simple chocolate brownies with walnuts, Corn tortillas without masa harina (experiment) and Huevos Rancheros (Mexican).
Saturday, April 28, 2012
Endives are delicious if you know how to cook them or how to combine them. Pairing the crunchy endives with melted cheese, cooled just enough to not spoil their texture and with fresh tomatoes is a winner. I'm quite proud of what I came up with. Enjoy :)
Last year: Zaansemostersoep (Mustard soup from Holland), Mushroom, cheese and thyme crostini and Pizza con pollo e mascarpone (Chicken and mascarpone pizza).
Friday, April 27, 2012
Today we have a guest post from our friend Vlad (who is also the godfather of our Mira). He's a very poetic guy and especially poetic when it comes to meat :). Enjoy the story he has to share with us:
Turducken is probably the western world’s greatest contribution to gastronomy. There are many variants, and there have been used as many as 16 species in a single roast, but the usual recipe involves stuffing a turkey with a duck stuffed with a chicken, matryoshka-style and roasting it in the oven. The paternity of this sick human contraption is disputed among the coasts of the Atlantic: Americans try to appropriate it as a traditional thanksgiving meal while Europeans point to their long history of animal abuse (as documented, for example by the Spanish Inquisition). However, its origins are probably lost in pre-history, since its ritualistic nature is hard to deny. Whether used diplomatically, by sharing a bi-totemic supper among the members of two tribes when one tribe „swallows” a smaller tribe, preventively, as a means to sublimate cannibal desires that reminded the primitive of the original sin of killing and devouring the primordial father, or ascetically, as a way to build a deleuzian body without organs that is full (thus acheiving true freedom), the turducken’s role in history cannot be denied.
You know it’s wrong, and yet you crave for it. It wakes one’s inner dr. Moreau to cram dead birds one inside another and try to bring them back to life (in your stomach, that is). And why settle on birds? You can take it to the next level by shoving the whole thing inside a pig, turning it into a pork-turducken, and it has been done (a bit overdone, if you ask me) by my gourmet role models, the guys from EpicMealTime. Since I don’t want to be labeled a copycat, I said to myself “why not turn this recipe on its head and stuff a pig inside a turkey, and add some beef while we’re at it?”.
I love cheesy gratins like this one. And also I like finding ways of rendering otherwise boring veggies into a delicious form, like giving those little green cabbages a lovely make-over. The whole thing, besides tasting delicious, is full of crunch and depth thanks to the poppy-seeds. Spiced with paprika and a touch of cinnamon (though it sounds weird in a savory dish, it matches the rest perfectly). Enjoy :)
Recipe adapted from: here.
Last year: Roast turkey pieces with thyme, rosemary, green garlic and lemon, Rosemary baked potatoes with green garlic, Three-cheese pasta with rucola, hazelnuts and sesame, Romanian Pasca (Easter cheese and egg cake) with raisins and Aloo Gobi (cauliflower and potato) with rice and raita (Indian).
Saturday, April 21, 2012
Sincronizadas are often confused with quesadillas in U.S. restaurants, but for the Mexicans they are a completely different dish. The main difference actually comes from the fact that sincronizadas are two tortillas superposed, while quesadillas are a folded single tortilla. Another thing is that quesadillas are supposed to contain cheese and something else (or not), while the sincronizadas must have both cheese and ham as the base ingredients for the filling. Which of course doesn't mean you can't have an authentic quesadilla with cheese and ham :). But anyway, enough theory.
Here's an example of a good plate full of sincronizadas, served with freshly made guacamole. We loved them. Enjoy :)
Last year: Ricotta and black olives crostini, Carrot, ginger and caramel marmalade, Quick roast banana breakfast (Kewra-flavored) and Simple black and white loaf cake (cozonacel).
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
I was happy to make this recipe (a few moths ago) as yet another way to work around the pregnancy-related food restrictions that kept me away from cheeses like Brie unless they were thermally processed. And it did not taste like a compromise :). It was lovely. Anyone should try it, even if they are aloud raw Brie.
Last year: Simplest veggie noodle soup, Caramelized onion and green garlic pizza (with rucola), Fruit skewers with molten chocolate and Creamy pasta with green onions, mushrooms and ham (very light).
Sunday, April 15, 2012
We like making smoothies in the morning to take away with us during the day for a healthier (and self-made) version of other drinks we could have from the shops. The combination of blueberries with carrot is one of the go-to's. Sweet (with a little addition of honey), full of fiber and flavor, tastes like summer in a bottle. :)
Last year: Coffee-marinated chicken, Fennel and walnut ricotta-filled muffins, The Ratatoille from the movie Ratatouille and Tofu Parmigiana (Italian).
Thursday, April 12, 2012
I made these for greeting my folks when they came over from the airport to visit us for the holidays. The combination between elder-flower, white rum and creamy mascarpone makes a lovely filling, delicately floral, that pairs the almonds in the crunchy base and the strongly flavored fresh raspberries like a match made in heaven :). You should try them as soon as possible, especially if you like elder-flower-based sweets (like syrups and jams).
Recipe adapted from Helene Dujardin, via Catalina.
Last year: Salmon Smorebrod (Danish sandwhich), Upside-down banana cake with raisins and walnuts and Chinese-style pork sesame balls.
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
We stumbled upon some hams and some other hand-made products made of game meat and we were happy to design some simple recipes that made the best of them. This is such a pasta dish that brings out the flavor of wild duck ham. Enjoy :)
Last year: Aubergine and zucchini pizza, Marinated pork chops with balsamic glaze and Pasta peperonata (bell pepper rigatoni).
Sunday, April 8, 2012
The Tandoori chicken is a popular Indian and Pakistani dish that takes its name from the oven used to bake it, called a tandoor. It consists of chicken baked in a mixture of yogurt and brightly colored condiments, most often served with white rice and fresh tomatoes.
It's a light, spicy (but not hot) and very flavored meal. One of our go-to's. Enjoy.
P.S: Sometimes people dilute the tandoori paste with yogurt (1:1) for a milder taste. We'd rather not :). But if you don't really enjoy strong flavors or spices, go ahead. We won't judge :)
P.P.S: For a fresher, more spring-like version of this dish, try putting the meat on skewers and serving it with fresh salad, raita and flatbread, as we did here. :)
Last year: Chicken and broccoli stir-fry with oyster sauce, Gougeres (French cheese puffs with caraway), Hazelnut and coffee chip cookies and Surimi noodle salad with asparagus.
Thursday, April 5, 2012
If you're a big fan of Brie and you'd like to have it in a light meal, this is the pizza for you. Also a nice thing to try if you're a bit bored of the classic tomato sauce-based pizza. The potatoes and thyme are just the thing needed to go with the Brie cheese. It may sound a bit unusual but it's just the thing for it, trust me.
The idea is adapted from BBC's Good Food.
Last year: Potato salad with pesto and mozzarella and Egg, avocado and bacon breakfast spicy tartines.
This is the pizza crust we make the most (we like it thinner and crispy). We make it the most because it's very easy to make and only abandon it occasionally for fancier stuff, but it's definitely our go-to. In the picture above it's an example of how it looks like in the version of Brie, potato and thyme pizza.
Good luck with your pizza making and happy baking! :)
Last year: Pickled red onions and Linguine alla matriciana with zucchini.
Monday, April 2, 2012
An easy to make tart with puff pastry, apple slices, baked and then sprinkled with honey and almond flakes. Very light and flavorful, tastes like home. Perfect for a relaxed afternoon or evening when you feel like something sweet but uncomplicated. We recommend using butter-based puff pastry for this, as the other types of pastry may puff too much during baking and the taste isn't quite the same either. Enjoy :)
Last year: Tortellini with white wine sauce and tofu, Simple artichoke dip and Aloo Baingan (Indian).