28. April 2006

tyrolean bacon dumplings

finally i am back in my own kitchen after quite some time abroad! my trip to london was just fabulous! i have to make sure to not let this much time pass before i go back to london next time. i think i'll make this an annual trip :)

we where living on sandwiches practically the whole time because we did not really have much money to spend. i just LOVE sandwiches, and the local supermarket in hammersmith had an amazing range of sandwich fillers on stock which i have never seen and tasted before. an entrie section in the fridge-area was dedicated to sandwich fillers, can you imagine that? this is what my ultimate sandwich-fantasy looks like! i posted from my mobilephone while i was there and loaded up pictures later too. there are not too many food-related entries though. check out my photostream on flickr if you like!

stilechtes abenbrot no spam, please ... gute geschenke für daheimgebliebene, part 3 lächerlich grosse kaffeetassen in covent garden ... Fish & chips

after all this fast (prepared) food it is rather tough not to stick to the habit and eat sliced austria bread all day. i have to cook something sturdy now and overcome my newly gained lazyness. how about tyrolean bacon dumplings? as i am always scared that my dumplings fall apart (due to a dumpling fiasko about a year back) i roll the mixture nice and tight in a napkin and cut the mega-dumpling in slices later.

tirolerknödel - serviettenknödel

100 g bacon, finely diced
3 rolls diced as well
125 ml milk
1 egg
1/2 onion, finely chopped
30 g flour
salt, pepper

01 roast bacon and remove from pan
02 roast onion in fat from bacon
03 blend milk and egg, add salt
04 put diced rolls in a bowl and pour over milk/egg mixture
05 stir in roasted bacon and onion and let rest for half an hour
06 sprinkle flour over the mixture and mix well
07 make dumplings - remember to keep your hands moist
08 let simmer in water or soup for about 15 minutes
tirolerknödel - serviettenknödel
the slices of the dumpling make a main course, i like them with mushroom sauce. you can eat them as a side dish with meat or vegetables as well.

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20. April 2006

london, baby!

my easter holidays are always reserved for the family. so i spent the last few days at my partent's, i ate way to much and hung out with my folks ... and i am still not tired of them!

today i am going to london with my sister and my mother for a couple of days. i have been planning this for months now and i can't wait, i am so excited! check out my flickr-account for pictures because i am planning to send pictures from the uk via my mobile phone. i hope roaming is not too expensive in the uk ...

14. April 2006

lady marmalade

i am a sucker for maralade (or jam as you might call it). though i am not a great eater when it comes to breakfasts, i often start my day with a good slice of brown bread with an even more delicious blob of marmalade. the classic "marmeladebrot" has been comfort food since i was a little girl and will probably accompany me my whole lifetime.

i always keep at least 5 different jams in my kitchen cupboard and when they are down to three i really tend to get nervous. but today i am sitting here in front of my last two glasses, i stare horrified at the remains of rosenmarillen (apricots) and ginger. all i can squeeze out of these glasses will be approximately two teaspoons of jam - i always knew this was going to happen someday but i am just not prepared for it ... having a craving for something and not being able to give in really sucks.

i need more jam!
i need more jam!!
i need more jam!!!

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12. April 2006

euro blogging by post 4 (again)

so i sent a parcel to mr. david lebovitz for euro food blogging 4.

it is a disaster what happened! read for yourself ....

... and weep - just like i did! i spent so much time and effort putting the parcel together and now pretty much everthing is ruined. not only did i spend (probably way too much) good money on all the stuff (i am sure everyone who participates does that!), i am really disappointed that my first blogging by post experience did not turn out too well. when i heard from david i was really devistated, i was thinking about not joining in anymore ...

... but this would be silly, actually. first of all, david was on holiday for a couple of days and the parcel was probably in a damp corner of some french postoffice for too long.
and second of all i was lucky enough not to get some mouseshit delivered, i got a pretty good parcel.

i am just really disappointed that i probably could not fulfill david's expectations.

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6. April 2006

little adjustments

ever since i have my foodblog i constantly think of how i could pep up my standard recipes. one thing i cook quite often is some sort of roasted meat, noodles, rice or vegetables on the side and some sort of gravy since growing up in a bohemian influenced middle european home makes it absolutely essential to get ahold of meat at least once a day. vital household recipes in our family include g'röstl (roasted sausage and cut up potatos), schnitzel, bratwurst, leberkäse, gulasch, reisfleisch (rice with meat), speckknödel (bacon dumplings) ... i know way more everyday recipes containing meat and being savory than recipes for sweet dishes (though upper austrian cuisine is supposedly famous for pastries and deserts!).

for most of my life meat was the epicenter of each meal. but growing up and learning about food and health made me think. from the first day i had home economics at school i became very aware of what i consume and how it affects my life. when i was eleven i came home from home ec and proudly announced to my surprised family: "i am a vegetarian now!!!". of course my strong-minded decision only lasted until next sunday's schnitzel.

since i moved out of my parent's flat i had several issues with my weight and even though i made my peace with the fact that i will never be super-skinny i don't want to feast on regional food anymore. i'd much rather indulge in a slimmed down version of traditional dishes and i adjusted my style of cooking. i do not use heavy cream anymore for example. i rarely used salt in my diet, so it was no problem cutting down on heavy seasoning. and i now replace ingredients to get more variety in my dull standards.

i am much more aware of what i eat and how the dish tastes, and that is quite a change. now i can easily make a traditional austrian roast filet taste sort of asian :). today i replaced an onion with an apple for example.

a piece of filet (pork, turkey, whichever you prefer)
1 apple
1 onion
200 ml cream (or similar but much lighter rama cremefine)
salt, pepper

01 boil the rice while you prepare the dish
02 roast filets in a pan and put aside when done
03 chop onion and cut apple in really tiny pieces
04 in the same pan now saute the onion over medium heat
05 add the apples and saute a little more
06 add 200 ml of cream, (i like to use rama cremefine instead, it has much less fat and calories) but be careful, the acid of the apple can quickly curdle the sauce!
07 though the juice from the roast meat has a very rich taste you might want to season with salt and pepper
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4. April 2006

easy bread and carrot soup

my project "40 soups of lent" is a gigantic failure. i planned on making a different soup each day during lent and so far i have only made 11. oh well. maybe i manage to try out 30 new recipes for soup in passion week, who knows ...

recipe # 11: easy bread and carrot soup

1 clove of garlic
1 slice of dark bread
1 big carrot
1/3 l water

01 cut garlic and fry with one tablespoon of oil
02 dice dark bread and add to the pot
03 grate the carrot and add to the pot as well, stir it all well
04 add water and bring to a boil
05 place a lid on the pot and let boil for 20 minutes
06 once the soup thickens season to taste and serve quite hot
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2. April 2006

i am a tofu virgin

i have to admit i never had tofu before. so last week i bought tofu in order to search for some easy recipes on the internet, something even a tofu virgin like me could handle. as i was going through my kitchen cabinet yesterday evening i found some rice noodles i hadn't thought of in ages (i had a big thing for asian cuisine last summer, i ate stir fry every day for like 3 months!) as well as a can of bamboo shoots i purchased a while ago. i thought i might mix that up and have my first tofu experience. i figured when it comes to cooking i could handle the tofu like regular white meat, so this is what i came up with:

250 g tofu
150 g bamboo shoots
teriyaki sauce
stir fry rice noodles

01 place rice noodles in a bowl and cover with boiling water
02 cut tofu and fry with a little oil in a wok over medium heat
03 add finely cut garlic
04 add bamboo shoots and stir-fry until garlic starts to brown
05 season with teriyaki sauce and finally add the drained rice noodles
tasting the outcome of my first tofu adventure was kind of disapointing. i mean, the dish wasn't bad at all, but it wasn't really mouthwatering either. as far as the other ingredients are concerned it all was pretty asian-influenced, but when it came to the tofu ... it was rather spongy and tasteless.

i have to admit that i am not really keen on soy anyway. i am always willing to give new stuff a try, but when i bought soy milk for the first time about a year ago and i could not even finish off the carton. i did not like it at all - the consistency, the taste and especially the aftertaste it left in my mouth.

i am sorry to say that cooking with tofu was an equally disappointing experience. i guess i'll stick to chicken in the future :)

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1. April 2006

london, baby!

after managing some dates and appointments i have finally booked a flight to london! i originally planned to make the trip with my sister and brother, but they both don't have time now ... how sad! i thought i'd have to fly alone, but then my mother suggested to come with me! how great! she could not visit either of her daughters during our stays in the uk (i was there 1996-1997 and my sister 1998), so now i finally have the chance to show her all the important places and sights of my life back then ...

chiswick, where i used to live.

ealing, where i went to college to improve my english

hammersmith, sheperd's bush, brentwood, earl's court, where i used to hang out with my aupair friends

my favorite pasttime on sunny days: hanging out in chiswick park, holland park, kew gardens, richmond and hempstead heath, chilling on the riverbanks of the river thames.

i can't wait to show her around. of course mum wants to see the tourist stuff as well - she has never really been travelling, the furthest would be a visit to relatives in plauen, germany. she is very excited, because it also will be her frst time on an airplane ...

the fastest spread/dip in the world

this is a delicious spread i invented due to a lack of fresh groceries when i was about twenty and living on my own for the first time. since i am very busy right now i tend to relaps and use processed food rather than fresh ingredients. nevertheless this is a favourite of mine, it goes with breakfast, snacks or munchies.

strain a can of kidney beans (225 g), throw in a food processor, add a little salt and freshly cut herbs if you want. also add a dash of sour creme - this will soften the mixture (you can also use cream, yoghurt or even a little milk). blend until smooth. add more sour creme if you wish to liquefiy the spread
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