Archive for February, 2010

February 28, 2010

Breakfast time

Can you think of a better way to start the day, other than eating? I love breakfast. I need something that will fill me up until lunch time, and possibly even later. My allocated time slot for breakfast is between five and six minutes, and besides, please don’t ask me to cook anything on a week day morning (on the other hand, I just love making pancakes on weekends).

I need coffee. Made with a caffettiera, of course – even though I admit mine is not pink, just a plain metal one :)

February 20, 2010

A toast to redescovered cookbooks

Cinnamon SyrupMy cookbooks are finally out of their box, and I am rediscovering them. I don’t have that many – for a food obsessed person – but I definitely have too many for a person who moves as often as I do. Sometimes I become totally obsessed with one and just make all the recipes in there, sometimes I really like one, but I can’t cook from it; sometimes I decide to give one recipe a try, and slowly discover that me and the cookbook did just not understand each other, but now that we have found a common ground, there is much to be discovered.

February 14, 2010

Spicing up the white

Vegetarian ChilliOut there it is all white. It has been white for months, now. Ice and snow and cold everywhere. The sun is nowhere to be seen, and the daylight pours in – each day longer, but each day colder – through a low, gray cloud curtain,  with a thin dust of snow.

It looks nice, but I am a southern person in my bones, there is no mistaking that.  And especially on week days, when I don’t have time to cover properly and dare the cold, I need some food to heat me up and give me the colour that has been drained from elsewhere.

The recipe I’d like to share is one I have been making for years and years with variations, almost every week. It started with meat, and then it turned to beans.  It allows for endless variations depending on what you have in your cupboard, requires very little attention, and the amount of spices and vegetables and colours is bound to cheer you up. Also eating it is big fun – a bit of this, a bit of that, you whip up your own combination and enjoy it. It is assembled in half an hour if you use a pressure cooker and cook the beans a day before (or use canned beans of course), a little more if you don’t have one – but it does not require you to actually do something in the meanwhile.

February 6, 2010

Back to baking

Chocolate custard muffin
Oh my, how I missed it. The dirty hands, the divine smell. Touching butter and melting chocolate and measuring flour.
And the result, there to tempt me for days.

I have been looking for quite a while for a perfect chocolate muffin. I think this one goes quite close (would you expect anything else from Dan Lepard?).

February 5, 2010

Very Dark Nutella Curd

This post honors the 2010 World Nutella Day – in spirit, at least :)

Nutella curd

This is a coming out.
I am one of those posh, unbearable persons who will turn their head with a disgusted look at people who choose to eat something with Nutella. I will always order my crêpe with real chocolate, or crème de marron, or butter and sugar, rather than having a crêpe with Nutella. When in a hotel, at the breakfast buffet I’d always leave there the little Nutella boxes in favour of.. pretty much anything else.

It is not that I can’t eat it. It is just too cheap and … now I am going to admit it… not very good.

Too sweet, too fatty.

And yet.

Before you start throwing stones at me, I need to finish my confession.

February 2, 2010

Pizza at home: a few notes

Home made pizzaFinally! The oven is back!

First thing we did, we baked a pizza. In our super connected world, you don’t really miss Italy that much. Two things though you do miss: the sun and pizza. Now I come from quite a misty and cold corner so I don’t even miss the sun that much. But pizza…
When you are in Italy, you live with the comforting thought that at walking distance there is always a pizzeria that can save the evening, if not the day. Maybe not the best on Earth, but still, acceptable. Abroad, that is not true. Pizza is in the best case very sad, in the worst case it will make you sick. In the UK the situation was number two, here in Germany, being many more ‘old style’ Italian immigrants, the situation leans towards number one.

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