Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Netherlands. Speculaas a favorite Christmas and St. Nicholas cookie.

Every December 6, Saint Nicholas Day, brings speculaas to Holland. Nicolas offers the cookies to children's who have behaved well throughout the year.
Speculaas is a favorite St. Nicholas and Christmas cookies. The dough is pressed into decorative wooden molds and then baked on a baking sheets.

The imaginative designs appeal to children of all ages, and the aromatic spice cookies are also part of the Advent tradition in Belgium and Germany.



  • 250 g flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp cloves and ginger
  • 100 g butter
  • 150 g sugar
  • 1 egg
  • grated peel of lemon
  • 50 g ground almonds
In a large bowl mix flour with baking powder and spices. In another bowl cream butter with sugar, then add lemon eel and egg. Add half of the flour mixture to the butter-sugar mixture and add almonds. Stir well. Gradually add the remaining flout mixture and make a dough. Wrap the dough and cool 3-4 hours. Grease the wooden molds (if you don't have use metal or plastic forms) and lightly flour them. Press the dough into the forms and remove the extras at the edges. Then remove dough forms from the molds and bake in preheated oven on baking sheet for about 10-15 minutes. Let them cool and transfer Speculaas to a cooling rack.

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Austria. The Viennese Coffeehouse.

A lot of legends and stories go around The Viennese coffeehouse. In Emperor Franz Joseph's era and in the 1920s it was the meeting point of intellectuals, artists and the literati. Most of there people lived in appalling conditions, just a little bedroom. The Coffeehouse was inviting - on one hand, one could sit there, warm and dry, on the other hand, because of the people, the company of kindred spirits. Mail could be delivered there, writing craft could be practiced , the latest gossip exchanged. Supposedly there were even professors who called doctoral candidates into the coffeehouse to take examinations.
Today the Viennese coffeehouse is more myth than reality. More than 600 coffeehouses are open, but they mostly do so to tourists. Classics of literature are no longer written in them, But the young Viennese and tourists have discovered them as meeting points.

Coffee Specialties:

  • Hitch - Sweet black in a glass with whipped cream and sprinkled with chocolate powder.
  • Coachman - Sweetened demi-tasse served in a glass.
  • Monk - Coffee with lots of milk.
  • Big Brown - Large cup with a dash of milk.
  • Small Black - Demi-tasse without milk.
  • Small Gold - Demi-tasse with milk.
  • Small Brown - Small cup of coffee with a dash of milk.
  • Melange - Coffee and fresh milk in equal parts a crown of whipped cream.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Pike-Perch king of "Hungarian ocean".

Fogas or pike-perch is the king of Balaton lake has really king size more than three pounds (1.5 kilograms). Some pike-perches reaches a weight between thirteen and eighteen pounds!

Scientists have argued about the relationship of the Balaton pike-perch to the salmon. Fogas belongs to the salmon family but is of a kind unique to the Balaton, and is not to be found anywhere else. Hungarian chefs have a lot of recipes how to cook this wonderful fish. And the preference for the whole fish pan-broiled.

Whole Broiled Pike-Perch with sour cream sauce.

  • 1 pike-perch about 2 kg
  • salt
  • flour
  • 150 g smoked bacon, sliced in strips
  • 1 medium size onion finely chopped
  • 100 g butter
  • 200 ml sour cream
  • 100 ml heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika ( we are in Hungary!)
  • 1 slice of lemon

Scale and wash the pike-perch. Cut back the gills, oil and score the fish on both sides to prevent contraction while broiling. Salt the fish, turn it in flour. Melt in a large frying pan butter and broil the pike-perch at a high temperature for about 15 minutes. Remove the fish and keep it warm.

Sauce: Fry in butter onion till transparent. Add the sour and sweet cream, cook a little and add paprika. Combine the flour and remaining butter and add them to the onion cream. Stir constantly till the sauce is thickened. pass the sauce though a sieve. Serve the pike-perch and garnish with the lemon slice and sauce.

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Thursday, November 01, 2007

Austria. Winter Carnival Doughnuts.

You will be surprised, like me, that the tomato, cauliflower, horseradish and plum puree all have Austrian names. Even coffee has its own Austrian name: Hitch, Coachman, Monk or Big Brown. Soon winter and I want to post about famous Austrian "Krapfen"- winter carnival doughnuts.

The world "Krapfen" is used for deep fried in hot butter pastries. The jam-filled Carnival Doughnuts has a ring around its middle. The Tirole Krapfen is triangular piece of dough filled with fat, milk, sugar, butter and honey. There are a lot of legends of how Doughnuts came to the Austrian culinary. In Baroque times there was a popular tradition of filling a doughnut with a jam and this came to a rage in Vienna in the 18th and 19th centuries. "Krapfen" were even good as royal meat, there were served at the Habsburg Monarchy.

Winter Carnival Doughnuts.

  • 300 g flour
  • 50 g sugar
  • 125 ml milk
  • 20 g yeast
  • 60 g butter
  • salt
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 150 g jam
  • peel of lemon
  • 1 tablespoon rum
  • powdered sugar
  • oil for frying
Warm milk and in first half add yeast, 1 tablespoon sugar and a little flour. let it rise untill double size. Melt butter and remaining sugar in another part of milk. Mix salt, egg yolk rum, lemon peel and remaining flour with the butter-sugar-milk mixture and make a smooth dough.Let it stand and make bubbles for about 20 minutes. Roll the dough out to a 1 cm thickness and using a glass cut out circles. Spoon 1 teaspoon of jam onto a half of each circle, cover with another circle and lightly press. Lay the Carnival Doughnuts - "Krapfens" on a floured surface and let them rise for 20 minutes. Fry 3-4 minutes in hot oil. Drain, cool and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

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Thursday, October 18, 2007

Ireland. Halloween Potato Apple Cake.

The most important religious festival in Ireland marks the end of the harvest on October 31. All Hallows Eve is better known as Halloween. In this day eating meat was forbidden and the traditional Halloween dishes don't contain meat. Between them are potato apple cake, boxty pancakes and pudding or colcannon, barm and blackberry pies.

Potato Apple Cake

  • 500 g potatoes, freshly boiled in skins
  • 2 tablespoons of melted butter
  • salt
  • 1 cup flour
  • 3 apples
  • flakes of butter
  • sugar granulated
Peel and mush potatoes, add salt and butter. Add flour and make a smooth dough. Shape the potato dough into a round disc and cut into quarters.
Peel apples and remove the core. Slice thinly and cover two quarters of the potato dough with slices of apple. Then take and cover with the remaining two quarters. Press the edges down firmly. Cook 10 minutes on both sides on low flame in a large heavy skillet or pancake pan. Carefully remove the tops of the potato cakes and sprinkle apples with butter flakes and sugar. Then return the tops to the skillet so the butter and sugar melt.

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Sunday, October 07, 2007

Spain Popular Fish. Zarzuela , the "Operetta of the Ocean".

Spain owns the largest fishing fleet after Japan and Norway. Since the ancient time the Spanish's have lived on whatever they could get from the Atlantic Ocean or the Mediterranean. And so they have an extraordinary skills in the cooking of fish and seafood.

The Basques eat the most popular fish in Spain hake and also cod al pil pil, in olive oil with garlic and , of coarse, their stew marmitako. In marmitako Spaniards use tuna fish, peppers and tomatoes- traditional fish accompany for Mediterranean cooking.
In Asturias like to cook their fish soups only with white flesh fish and add mussels and crustaceans cooked in sea water.
In Catalonia the famous zarzuela requires not only angler fish and squid but a great variety of fishes and shrimps.
Only in Andalusia peaple know to deep fry fiah in olive oil and reach such unforgettable flavor.
But the most popular way of cooking fish is to broil it and in this field the Spanish are masters!

The famous Catalonia "Operetta of the Ocean" zarzuela:


  • 5 slices angler fish
  • 1 1/2 kg mussels
  • 8 spiny lobsters
  • 3 medium sized squid or 4 small
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 4 slices bread
  • 10 ml brandy
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 500 g tomatoes (remove skin and seeds and chop well)
  • 1 pinch saffron threads
  • 200 ml white wine
  • 70n g almonds
  • 2 Tbs chopped parsley
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
Wash and prepare fish and lobsters. In a saucepan put olive oil and lightly fry the fish and lobsters for about 10 minutes. Brush and wash the mussels and remove their beards. Put them in a pan and simmer with a little water over low flame until their shells open. Drain and remove the mussels from their shells.
In a different large saucepan fry onion with 20 ml olive oil until transparent and add fish, lobsters, mussels, 2 crushed garlic, saffron and tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper and add brandy. Cook at low flame 15 minutes, add white wine. Leave to reduce wine and add almonds. The remaining 2 garlic cloves rub into the bread slices and toast in olive oil till golden. Place the bread on soup plates and pour the Zarzuela over it. Serve with parsley.

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Sunday, September 23, 2007

Switzerland. Aargau Carrot Cake.

In her 700 years history, Switzerland has a reputation as a peace loving nation. The Swiss love confections and cakes of all kinds. The Aargau Carrot Cake have a 500 year-old tradition that has made the cake world-renowned.


  • 6 egg yolks
  • 6 egg whites
  • peel of one lemon
  • 300 g sugar
  • 50 g flour
  • 300 g ground almonds
  • 300 g carrots
  • 2 Tbs Kirsch
  • powdered sugar
  • marzipan carrots
Beat egg yolks with sugar till creamy. Add lemon peel and Kirsch. Add grated carrots, flour, almonds and mix well. Beat egg whites until stiff and fold them into the mixture. Pour the carrot cake mixture into a spring form and bake in preheated oven (180 C) for about 60 minutes. Sprinkle the cooled Aargau Carrot Cake with powdered sugar and garnish with marzipan carrots.

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Sunday, September 09, 2007

England. What are the differences between pies and puddings. Steak and kidney pudding recipe.

There are the differences between pies and puddings:

  1. Pies are cooked in not deep pans which are rarely taller than about 5 cm. Puddings are cooked in deep tall bowls .
  2. The dough for a pies consists flour, fat, salt, pepper and cold water. For pudding dough the fat is replaced with beef suet and used self-raising flour.
  3. Pies are cooked in the oven. Puddings cooked steamed.
Steak and Kidney Pudding

  • 400 g self-raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper
  • 200 g beef suet, grated or chopped
  • 1 kg rump steak
  • 250 g veal kidney
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbs flour
  • 4 tbs chopped onions
  • 125 ml port or strong ale
  • 125 ml beef stock
  • 2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
Make the pudding dough. Grease the pudding basin (a deep round bowl used for cooking steamed puddings) and line it with the dough, keeping a little back. Put the meat and kidneys with onions into the basin. Mix well port, beef stock and Worcestershire sauce. Pour the sauce mixture over the filling. Cover with rest of dough, pressing the edges together firmly so that the dough encloses the pudding completely. Wrap the pudding basin in a cloth and steam for 3-4 hours ina bain-marie. The crust will appear at the end of cooking.

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Sunday, September 02, 2007

Today everything is about Greek.

The Greeks don't like sweets or puddings or musses for dessert. They prefer to finish a meal with fresh fruit which they have in magnificent selection. Oranges and mandarins that ripen in the winter and followed by medlars, which ripen in spring. Excellent strawberries and very popular cherries are the next in season. In early summer they have apricots, plums and peaches. Then come melons and bananas with their distinctive flavor, apples and pears and grapes.
Of coarse, Greece is well-known with a large variety of sweet specialties. The Geeks don't eat them as a pudding , but consume them in the afternoon or later in the evening. Often sweets that have to be consumed with a spoon served with glika koutaliou. As custom claims they are served in a silver bowl, from it a hang spoons with which guests help them selfs. The bowl contains fruit in syrup: figs, cherries, grapes, apricots and even green tomatoes, bitter oranges.

Nut pastry

  • 250 g butter 500 g sheets of Fillo pastry
  • 1 kg almonds chopped
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 650 g sugar
  • Peel of 1 orange
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 tsp rose water
  • 3 cloves

Melt the butter. Line a rectangular baking form, greased with butter, a sheet of Fillo and brush the Fillo sheet with melted butter. Butter another nine pastry sheets and add them one by one to the baking form. Cover upper layer with damp of cloth to prevent from drying out. Mix almonds, cinnamon and 125 g of sugar. Spread a thin layer of almond mixture over the pastry and cover with more 3 sheets of Fillo, each brushed with butter. Spread another layer of almond mixture and cover again with Fillo sheet as before and continue in this way until all the almonds filling has been used. The upper layer must be one of Fillo. Brush all over hanging pastry with butter and tuck it in. Mark the forms with a very sharp knife or with diamond-shaped pattern. Brush more butter and moisten with water. Bake in preheated oven (160 C) for about 75 minutes until baklawas is golden.
During baking, mix the remaining sugar with orange peel, cloves and cinnamon with 2 cups of water and bring it to a boil. Simmer for about 15-20 minutes and remove spices and orange peel. Add honey and the rose-water and continue to stirring well for some seconds. Remove from the flame and let it cool. Pour the syrup over the finished baklawas and leave over night. Don't refrigerate it! Cut into portions like marked and serve your really Greek baklawas.

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Monday, August 13, 2007

European Union member Potrugal. Petiscos and salgados pastries.

Portugal is well worth the trip for those who like authentic foods. There are in all areas of agriculture, species and varieties that have developed over the course of centuries and millennia in harmony with their natural surroundings. The same is true of many of the ways of preparing food such as hum, sausages, cheese, dried fruits and candy, or one of the large range of recipes, all of these are firmly rooted in tradition. There are historical reasons why Portugal still has such a wealth of culinary delights. The country was cut off from the outside world for over 40 years until 1974 when the dictatorship founded by Salazar came to the end. Since Portugal joined the European Union, traditional culinary doesn't changed.


Petiscos are small delicacies that can be compared with Spanish tapas. It is usual to order in cafes, pubs and bars a pratinho, a small plate of them. The portions are usually so generous, that two petiscos will quell the feeling of hunger for hours. Some pubs serve petiscos from 11 in the morning onwards, but the favored time for eating them is in the late afternoon. People go to the tasca, a simple bar, and have a glass of wine from the cask to accompany any of a range of marinaded fish, bean salad, pigs ears, actopus, fried or roasted pieces of meat and fish.


In contrast, salgados, salty pastries with spicy filling and are eaten as snacks throughout the day, from brealfast time through to midnight. They are made with choux or puff pastry, battered or sometimes left plain. the fillings are made out of fish, meat, sausages and sellfish mixed with potatoes and vegetables and seasoned with herbs and pepper. Salgados are either oven-baked or deep-fried.

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Saturday, August 04, 2007

Kalakuko Fish and Meat in a Loaf.

Today I'm going to post about another European Union member Finland. Although they have had the terrain, climate and history of their country against them, the Finns have succeeded in developing ( Nokia company) and preserving a society with high standard of living.
The most famous Finnish pasty, the kalakukko or kalakuko, comes from the province of Sovo in Central Finland. The name means "fish cock". You can find stalls selling kalakuko in all markets and all bakers sell kalakukko like a specialty. Because the pasty looks like a round loaf, it is possible to buy one by mistake. Many people have set out with the intention of buying a loaf of bread and have gone with kalakuko.



  • 1 kg rye flour
  • 1 Tbs salt
  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 1 1/2 kg vendace or perch
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 250 g fatty pork
  • 150 g bacon
  • 1 bunch dill, washed

Mix flour, salt and butter with 1 liter of water . Leave a side. Prepare the fish for cooking (scale, gut and remove head and tail). Wash, dry with kitchen paper and season with salt. If you using one large fish instead of several smaller ones, cut the fish into 5 cm wide pieces.
Cut the pork into thin stripes, dice the bacon and chop the dill. Sprinkle a work place with flour and roll out the dough on it an oval shape. layer the fish and the meat in the middle, covering them with bacon and dill. Season with salt and pepper. Brush the outside of the dough with water and close over the filling, pressing down firmly. Smooth the top with wetted hands and sprinkle with rye flour. bake in the oven 250C until the top gets some color. Then wrap in aluminum foil and cook in the oven for 5-6 hours at low temperature 150C. Baste occasionally with pork fat. Leave to cool after baking and cut like bread into thick slices to serve. Kalakuko is eaten hot or cold with butter and accompanied by cold milk or buttermilk.

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Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Belgium cooking with beer.

I've decided to make some posts about traditional drink in Europa countries. Now it is time for Belgium's beer. The Belgians are very proud of their beers, of which there are basically three types:

  • Bottom-fermented beers, which are brewed at a low temperature ( below 50 F, 10 C). They are pale and yellowish in color and , because of the hops, slightly bitter and dry taste. The best known brands Jupiler, La Stella, and La Maes.
  • Spontaneously fermented beers, a process which is triggered by bacteria and yeasts which naturally occur in the Senne valley.
  • Top-fermented beers, which can be brewed at higher temperatures (59-68F, 15-20C). Their color is usually copper to dark brown and their taste sweet and fruity.
Belgium's beer brewing tradition goes back about a thousand years. It is not surprising that beer is an ingredient in many Belgian recipes. Here is a traditional Belgium meat dishCarbonnades Flamandes or Flemish Beef Casserole.

Flemish Beef Casserole
ingredients (4 servings)
  • 1 kg beef shoulder
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 large onions
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 500 ml Gueuze, Lambic or any brown beer
  • 1 slice of bread
  • 1 bouquet garni
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon mustard
Cut the meat into large cubes and fry in the butter until brown on all sides. Add salt and pepper and remove from the frying pan. Cut onions into ringd and braise them lightly in the meat juices. Add the sugar and the beer and bring to the boil. Crumble the bread and add to the gravy together with the bouquet garni, vinegar, mustard and the meat. Cover and cook at low temperature for about 2 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. The best accompaniment is mushed potatoes and carrot.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Kvas a popular drink in Russia.

Russia Sochi has been chosen like the place for the next Olympic Games. So I have decided to look for some interesting traditional Russia meal.
Kvas is just as popular in Russia as beer is in other countries. The name literally means "sour drink", and it is brewed from all kinds of household staples, namely dry bread, apples and pears, cow berries and cranberries, blackcurrant's and redcurrant's, strawberries and buckwheat. Sugar or honey are used to sweeten the brew. Homemade kvas froths up easily and contains only a little alcohol.

Homemade Kvas

  • 500 g rye bread
  • 40 g yeast
  • 100 g sugar
  • 5 Tbs lukewarm water
  • 1 bunch of peppermint
  • Blackcurrant leaves
  • 50 g raisins
  • Rind from 1 untreated lemon

Slice the rye bread and dry in the oven, place in a saucepan and add 4 liters of boiling water. Cover with a cloth and leave for 4 hours, then pour though a fine sieve.
Stir the yeast with a little sugar into the lukewarm water, leave to rise for about 20 minutes and add ti the brew. Then carefully squeeze the moisture out of the bread mixture into the brew, add the remaining sugar, mint- putting a few mint leaves aside- and the blackcurrant leaves, ans leave the brew overnight in a warm place for it to ferment.
Strain once more thought a cloth and bottle. Place a few raisins, a peppermint leaf and a piece of lemon rind in each bottle. Close tightly and store in the refrigerator for 3 days. When the raisins have risen to the surface, strain the kvas ones again and rebottle. It will be ready for drinking.

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Monday, July 09, 2007

Which Sauce for which pasta.

Pasta should only be allowed to swim in the much-loved clear broths and soups. Otherwise the sauce should be portioned so that the pasta completely absorbs the liquid. If the sauce is thin, then the pasta must be more absorbent and the hollow than for a thicker sauce.

Aglio e olio - crushed garlic, parsley and cold pressed olive oil with spaghetti, spaghettini, vermicelli and linguine.
Ai frutti di mare - with seafood.
All'amrtriciana - bacon and tomato sauce which good for bucatini, spaghetti, gramigna.
Alla napolitana (Sugo di pomodoro) - tomato sauce with all kind of pasta, regardless of shape and consistency.
Alla panna - in cream (with lots of pepper) comes with tortellini and regatoni.
Alla siciliana - tomato sauce with fresh sardines, goes with vermicelli and bucatini.
Allo spezzatino - with braised fish. Eaten with maccheroni, marelle, fusilli, penne, rigatoni, pappardelle and other ribbon noodles.
Burro e salvia - sage butter, made from butter and crispy fried leaves of sage. Goes well with all kinds of pasta.
Carbonara - bacon, cheese and eggs. Goes with spagetti and other long noodles.
In brondo - clear broth (usually chicken). With anolini, cappeletti and tortellini.
Pesto- basil sauce eaten with filled or unfilled noodles , especially with trenette, fettuccine, tagliatelle, linguine and farfalle.
Salsa cruda - "raw", i.e. an uncooked sauce with raw eggs or uncooked tomatoes, parsley, basil and Parmesan cheese. Eaten with ribbon noodles.
Salsa di noci - sauce with wallnuts and Ricotta cheese. Goes with ribbon noodles.

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Thursday, June 14, 2007

Spaghetti with lemons, prosciutto and rocket leaves.

400gr good quality thin pasta or spaghettini
1/4 cup of fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup of olive oil 2 small fresh red chillies, seeded and well chopped
10 slices prosciutto cut into strips

1 tablespoon of grated lemon zest
250gr rocket leaves, cleaned and shredded

Dressing: Blend in a bowl lemon juice, chilli, olive oil, salt and pepper.
In another bowl mix prosciutto, zest of lemon and rocket leaves. Cook the pasta, drain and add to prosciutto mixture. Pour the dressing over and enjoy your spaghetti with lemon .

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Sunday, June 03, 2007

Baked raspberry meringue

This sweet delight is very easy to make and really enjoy to eat. I bake them in turbo oven with vent, but if you don't have the vent in your oven so after turning off the oven leave meringues in for cooling.

ingredients (10 servings)

  • 2 egg whites important at room temperature
  • 75 gr sugar
  • 30 gr demerara sugar (light brown cane sugar)
  • 120 gr frozen raspberries, not defrost them
Use clean mixing bowl without any fan in it. Whisk egg whites at medium speed for about 2 minutes until frothy. Increase speed to medium high and gradually add sugar. First use the white sugar and then the demerara sugar. Whisk for 5 minutes till firm and stands up in peaks.
Separate the frozen raspberries and add gradually to eggs.
Putt on a baking sheet silicon or baking paper. Shape 10 large cookies. Bake for an 1.5 hour at very low heat (125 C) in preheated turbo oven with vent. Turn off the heat but not the vent and cool for about an hour. Move the raspberry meringue to a closed tin. Serve immediately or frozen( if frozen , serve without defrosting).

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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Bass fillets with mango, fresh chilli, olive oil and lime.

ingredients( 4 servings)

  • 320 gr bass fillet with no bones and skin
  • 8 tablespoons mango cut into small cubes
  • 4 teaspoon purple onion chopped
  • 4 teaspoon coriander leaves chopped
  • 4 teaspoon basil leaves chopped
  • 2 teaspoon fresh chilli chopped
  • 8 tablespoons olive oil
  • 12 tablespoons lime juice
  • salt and pepper

Cut fish fillets to small cubes. Mix gently all the ingredients. Put in goblet and serve immediately.

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Sunday, April 29, 2007

Cinnamon yeast cake

Here is my mother's recipe of cinnamon yeast cake which she used to bake for holidays.



  • 1/4 cup lukewarm water
  • 30 gr yeast
  • 1 cup milk
  • 120 gr butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 eggs
  • salt


  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 70 gr melted butter
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 80 gr chopped pecan nuts
Mix yeast and water and leave for 10-15 minutes. Bring to a boil milk in a small saucepan, remove from the heat, add butter, mix well and cool. In food processor ( helping with hook) combine 2 cups of flour, sugar, eggs and salt. Add the milk mixture and the yeast. Add remaining flour and mix for10-15 minutes at medium speed. Take medium size bowl, brush it with butter and place in to dough. Cover and let the dough rise till double in size. Hit gently with palm and knead dough a little on a floured place. Roll the dough out into rectangle of 20x40 cm and 1/2 cm thick and brush with melted butter. Sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon and nuts. Keep 1 cm edges without filling. Roll the dough into a 40 cm cylinder and cut 3.5 cm thick slices. Arrange the slices of cinnamon yeast cake not closely together in greased baking pan with the slices side up. Cover the pan with a towel and let rise for 20-30 minutes. Bake the cinnamon yeast cake in preheated oven for 40 minuted at medium heat (160 C). To be sure that the cake is ready take toothpick, pierce the cake and if it comes out clean your cinnamon yeast cake is ready. I hope you'll enjoy my mom's cinnamon cake.

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Monday, April 16, 2007

Pork with nuts and mint

This recipe I've found on cozypan.com blog. I modernized it a little and baked delicious pork with nuts and mint.


400 gr pork
150 gr of cashew nuts (walnuts possibly also)
2 tablespoon fresh mint finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh coriander finely chopped
2 cm of ginger root grated
1 Chile pepper
3 tablespoons of peanut oil
2-3 tablespoons of soya sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar

4 cloves of garlic chopped
juice of one lemon

Preparation method exactly the same like on cozypan blog.

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Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Lamb kebab with green tehina


1 kg lamb meat minced
1 onion chopped
1/2 cup parsley chopped
salt and pepper
a little anise flavored liquor
fresh rosemary stalks for skewers


1 cup raw tehini
juice of 1 lemon
2 cloves crushed
few coriander leaves
a lot of parsley

Mix the meat with onion, parsley and spices. Add anise liquor and let stand a while. Form meat balls and insert on a straight rosemary stalk with top leaves were removed ( or if you don't have rosemary stalks take the regular skewers). Add to the kebab skewers cherry tomatoes. Grill or fry in a little oil in a heavy pan.
In food processor blend tehini, juice of lemon, garlic, coriander and parsley leaves and 1/2 cup of water. Blend till a thick tehini. Spread the tehini in the center of plate and put on the plate kebab skewers.

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Meat and vegetables Italian Lasagna.

Here is my favorite dish which I love to cook and to eat. Italian lasagna with beef meat, beacon, grated Parmesan cheese, onion, celery root ,tomatoes, carrots, sauce bechamel (white sauce), garlic and lasagna noodles. When I don't have time I use ready lasagna noodles if not make a dough by myself.

Fresh, home-made pasta, pasta fresca, is typical of nothern Italy, European Union member. As early 1300 a Florentine cookbook made note of the first recipes for fresh pasta from wheat flour, eggs and salt. The speed and dexterity of the women making hat-shaped parcels from fresh pasta is unbelievable. They then fill them with various vegetable or meat sauces or with spinach or Ricotta cream cheese. No medding, christening or Christmas dinner is really an occasion without fresh, filled pasta parcels..Every town in Nothern Italy boasts its very own carefully preserved shapes and fillings. There nare more tham 110 different recipes for tortellini, and more than 50 recipes of lasagna.

Basic recipe for pasta fresca (fresh pasta dough):

  • 500 g wheat flour
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp salt
Sieve the flour onto the work surface. Make a well in the middle, break the eggs into it and add salt. Gradually work in the flour from the edges until a rough dough is produced. Knead the dough for 15 minutes by nahd until it is shiny and elastic. Wrap in hahdy wrap and leave to stand for 1 hour. Dust the work surface with flour and roll out the dough until it is very thin and cut into large equal-sized rectangles. Bring enough salted water with a little olive oil to the boil and boil the sheets of lasagna for 5 minutes. Carefully remove from the water and drain on kitchenroll.

Here is very Italian recipe of this delightful lasagna cozypan.com

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Sunday, March 11, 2007

How to choose fresh meat.

how to choose fresh meat

It is desirable to buy meat in clean and "crowded shop" which has been authorized by the veterinary inspector.

Be convinced that on the meat you buy there is a press of veterinary supervision with precise data of the manufacturer and mdg.date and expiry.

Chicken is a little bit pink but not red.

Beef and chicken should have a typical smell of fresh meat.

Beef should not be sticky.

The fresh beef has red color but without shine. If the piece of meat shines most likely that in it some chemicals have been added.

Dark edges on a piece of beef - the meat is dried.

The fresh beef should be elastic. If to press on it with fingers the finger sign should disappear at once.

The defrozen meat, passed off the fresh meat, very easy to distinguish: The defrozen meat always wet (fresh always dry). And besides that on the defrozen meat can be dark spots which can appear during frosting.

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Monday, February 26, 2007

Why to buy professional cook knives?

My friend Jon he is a chef in Italian restraint. He told me that 50 percent success in cooking (home cooking or professional) is sharp and very good knifes. Good knife costs more than 100 $ but we don't need knifes set for home cooking. It is enough one or two very good professional cook knifes. "Why to buy professional cook knives? They are so expensive" you'll ask. Because good professional cook knife is also called chef's knife is the versatile "workhorse" of knives for any types of cutting: meat with bones, herbs, fruits and vegetables. Try to cut tomato with ordinary knife and you'll see the difference. Made from the high carbon stainless steel and having forged construction expensive professional cook knife or any specific type of knife will serve you long. One more advantage is that it stays sharp longer. Keep your knife clean ( don't clean professional cook's knife in dishwasher they don't like it) and sharp and you'll enjoy cooking like me.

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