15. Dezember 2008

[laˈzaɲa] for my computer guy

well, i am a computer girl myself. i don't mind to screw open a data processor and adjust hardware. in most cases i even adjust hardware sucessfully *lol*. my friend peter is hardcore though. he can do *everything* with a computer, may it be hardware, software, a network or whatever. no kidding. i bow before him!

peter drops by with a few ram modules for the server he gave me recently and therefor i will cook a delicious lasagna for him tonight.

when he presented me with the server a couple of weeks ago i was a geek girl in heaven! i hope tonight he'll be a geek boy in a lasagna coma :D. undoubtedly he *will* be, because i made my first lasagna in a cooking class when i was eleven years old and it was very good right from the start. now, 22 years later i still cook it from time to time. i don't need a recipe, i cook it slightly different every time and it still turns out ... well, pretty darn good! yes yes yes, i blow my own trumpet here, but believe me, my lasagna IS perfection! [but whose isn't?]

in a pan, fry one small onion in a little olive oil. add 500 g of minced meat and gently fry over medium heat. sprinkle in two stock cubes. add one spoon full of tomato paste and a couple of cherry tomatoes. add dried basil, cover with a lid, leave on medium heat and let simmer for half an hour. stir occasionally.

prepare béchamel sauce (or white sauce) once the meat looks ready by whisking 300 ml of scalded milk gradually into a white flour-butter roux (roux is equal part clarified butter and flour). the sauce should not be too thick! stir a couple of fresh basil leaves into the meat sauce and start to build the layers:

ladle enough meat sauce in a baking dish to cover the bottom and top that with non cook lasagna noodles. top with béchamel sauce, just enough to cover the noodles. add an even layer of your favorite cheese. now add meat sauce again, then noodles, béchamel sauce, cheese, meat sauce and so forth. make as many layers as you wish, i usually get to four or five. top with béchamel sauce and add some more cheese. for a fresh touch i like to add cherry tomatoes and fresh basil and even more cheeeeeeese :) bake in a preheated oven for one hour to 90 minutes and allow it to sit for a few minutes before serving.

i think peter enjoyed my dinner.

he even finished off what i did not manage to eat! good guy!


5. Dezember 2008

google friend connect

so, i am just trying this new feature, google friend connect. i have no clue what it is all about yet, but since i am an early adopter as far as web 2.0 is concerned ... google says it will *enrich my site* and *attract more visitors* - we'll see about that!

[i'll try to make christmas cookies in the meantime]

30. November 2008

my winter salad

cook a few small (new) potatoes. wash lamb's lettuce and marinade in olive oil, vinegar and pepper. add a spoon full of sunflower seeds. toss. set aside. once the potatoes are done, cut them in half and fry them in a splash of olive oil. add salt and pepper and also rosemary. when the potatoes are nice and crisp add them to the lettuce and toss.


winter salad
winter salad
winter salad
winter salad
winter salad
winter salad

19. November 2008

love food, hate waste AND save money

a very inspirational website i just found:


growing up in a working class enviroment i've learned to live a resourceful life at a very young age. i still am very aware of that today (i believe), but there is no harm in consulting clever websites every now and then. it's not only that i hate being wasteful, i also can't affort to pour money down the drain! really - who can, these days? while i try to be very aware of enviromental issues, i also am aware of my slender purse.

16. November 2008

for the soul

so, what do you do when this leek you've had in the fridge for a while seems to go the way of all earthly things? you suddenly are inspired to post to your foodblog again!

leek soup
wash, peel and cut three small potatoes into cubes. cut one leek into rounds. fry the potatoes in vegetable oil over medium heat. you only need to do this for a couple of minutes before adding the leek. put a lid on the pot and sauté the vegetables gently for a few more minutes [if you want to add any herbs, you can do it at that point. parsley, tarragon, whatever. chop a good hand full and throw it in as well! unfortunately the herbs on my balcony did not want to stay alive when i moved them inside to my windowsill ...] add one liter of vegetable stock and bring to a boil. reduce the heat and let the soup simmer until the vegetables are soft. arrange on a plate with a dash of pepper and nutmeg. since i had to get rid of some very frumpy rye bread i decided to toast some slices, break them up and make croutons.

now, this is really heart-warming ...


10. Oktober 2008

fake it till you make it

i've had a very rough time lately as you might be able to guess.

fake apfelstrudel

so today i am faking apfelstrudel because they now sell filo dough at my local grocery store for all my strudel needs. i suppose i'll keep a packet of this pastry in my fridge from now on ...

19. Juli 2008

good work!

how weird. that piece of stop motion cooking actually made me hungry!

3. Juli 2008


i am not big on impromptu action. i need to plan ahead, i need to set things up properly, i need to be prepared. i've always been like that, but ever since i have to be on a schedule with my medication, it became even worse. i wish i could be impulsive, but i am just not. having a plan calms me down.

recently i learned to let go a little, don't ask me why. maybe it comes with age. maybe it's because it occured to me that i don't even have a "plan b" as far as my life is concerned. maybe it's because i realized that i can *not* controll everything. and i don't even need to be able to controll everything!

i spent a few days in berlin the other week *just because*. a vacation (or even a daytrip) usually is a HUGE thing for me. and guess what, not everything was planned out and not everything i had planned went according to my neat and oh so clever schedule. gosh, i even forgot my towel at home and to my big surprise, this was not the end of the world! omg, and the foooooood in berlin is awesome! what a great cultural diversity, and how cheap and amazing it is! so authentic, i can't even begin to describe the enjoyment!

but i am getting off the point!

impromptu pasta salad for the *beach*
i actually wanted to show you a few pictures of an impromptu beach-dinner-thing i organized yesterday. I ORGANIZED IT! well, there wasn't a lot to organize, those things usually organize themselves. i just brought the food and the forks and i called a few people.

it was awesome, to say the least!

i made some bbq pasta salad that was kind of mediterranean. i don't have a big recipe for this, though. i grilled a few vegetables and halloumi and boiled a substancial amount of pasta. i let it all cool a bit and combined everything with 125 g crème fraiche, herbs and garlic.

impromptu pasta salad for the *beach*
impromptu pasta salad for the *beach*
impromptu pasta salad for the *beach*
impromptu pasta salad for the *beach*
impromptu pasta salad for the *beach*
impromptu pasta salad for the *beach*
impromptu pasta salad for the *beach*
summer has never been a friend of mine, i get a sunburn and a million freckles only *thinking* of sun (though i use baby sunlotion spf 50+), but as far as the summer food is concerned ... oh, how i love it!

19. Juni 2008

how sweet, more *nockerl ... !

i guess you are aware of my love for *nockerl*. i adore those tiny pillows in every shape and form, no matter if savory or sweet. luckily my heirloom recipes offer many variations, they all are easy, quick, filling, cheap and above all delicious. the little dumplings really are a staple of the regional cuisine and i think that their biggest pro is that you can so easily adjust servings to your desire.

if you feel really hungry just go ahead and load a whole plate full to the brim! if you come home from a loooong day and you still have left over *nockerl* from the day before, just nibble around a bit! grab your fork and plunge into the pot!

it also comes in very handy that you can so easily freeze a batch, if they are still undercooked or half done it's even better. you can get very inventive with your additional ingredients when you fancy *nockerl* the next time and take a batch out of your freezer.

but i am going for freshly boiled today.
and i am also going for sweet!

topfennockerl / tiny curd cheese dumplings, nockerl, or gnocchi

with a fork, thoroughly mix 250 g curd cheese, one egg, 25 g (2 tablespoons) of semolina, 20 g (2 tablespoons) of flour and a pinch of salt. you might need more flour, this really depends on the texture of your mixture. you might even need less than i used here, just try it out!

set the mixture aside and let it rest for about half an hour. the dough should not be too soft, so you might even add more flour at this point.

bring a pot of water to the boil. now form little *nockerl* with two spoons. once you throw them into the water, it should only simmer (this is VERY important!) the *nockerl* are done when they start to float to the surface.

melt a knob of butter in a pan. stir in 15 tablespoons of breadcrumbs and two packets of vanilla sugar. roast the crumbs until they turn brown. my mum usually makes them much sweeter and adds like 4 times as much (regular) sugar and also cinnamon. you see, it just depends on your taste!

when your *nockerl* are done, remove them from the water, place them in the pan and turn them a little to coat them with the crumbs.

it turns out that the specifications above make exactly 13 nockerl. too much for me to eat in one sitting, so this actually serves two. or me again, in the evening.

the other day my mum suggested to coat those *nockerl* with poppy seeds. that's also a fine idea but since my pantry is not as well stocked as hers i'd need to do some more grocery shopping for *nockerl* improvisation extravaganza.

26. Mai 2008

am hungertuch nagen

if you literally translate that german expression it says something like *nibbling on the hunger cloth*. that saying always annoyed me, as long as i can remember. because no matter how little money my family had or how bad things where all around, there was always food on the table.

i think i might have jumped the gun with my last post and my recent comments probably led you to believe that i am actually more than broke and everything is going down the drain. no, i can't affort a new computer right now. but this one might work just fine for a couple of more months! hey, and i wouldn't be a *glass half full-person* if i let a silly computer problem get me down, right? if life hands you financial lemons ... take a stroll trough your neighbourhood and look for delicious rambling weeds you could cook for dinner!

... uhm ... say what?! is the [dinner for one] lady a bag lady now??

no, i am not completely coo-coo. well, at least not yet! but my current *misery* (is it, really?) made me think. how did my mother and my grandmother do that? how did they feed a busload of hungry yaps several times a day with delicious, filling and above all cheap meals? how did they creatively alter recipes and just make the most of the produce from their own backyard? well, i don't have the luxury of a backyard, but i do have a lovely neighborhood where interesting *things* grow wild. interesting things i used to eat when i was a child! that's not weed! that's not worthless green garbage! when i was strolling my block the last couple of days, the delicious smell of elderflower tickled my nose i immediately thought of those amazing fritters my grandmother used to make. they where merely fried blossoms dipped in pancake batter, and they where unbelievably delicious.

elderflower fritters / elderflower pancakes

first, gather a couple of elderflowers. you don't need to wash them, just make sure that you remove any insects from the blossoms or the stalks - we want the fritters to be vegetarian, right?

[ since i worship mister anthony bourdain and his approach towards food around the globe i might even fry me up some high-protein bug, what do you think? na, just kidding! ]

now mix 125 g flour (i used half whole wheat and half regular white flour), one egg, 250 ml milk and a dash of salt and leave it to rest for at least half an hour [or make *your* favourite pancake batter, i am sure it will work just as good!]. make sure the batter is really thick, because it needs to cover all the blossoms in the end. too runny is not good!

in the meantime heat a knob of butter in a small frying pan. dunk the flower heads in the batter then place them flowerside down in the pan.

if your batter is too runny you can spoon some more over the flowers in the pan. you only need to fry one side, just wait until the batter sets. if you want the fritters more pancake-style you can cut off the main stalks and flip them over. if you deep fry them in hot oil, they probably look a little more appealing, but i totally like them pancake style! i even had so much batter left at the end that i made a regular pancake that covered the last floret entirely ... yummie too! [see the rest of the pictures here]

dust the florets with icing sugar and eat while still warm! vanilla ice cream on the side is also a very very good idea :)

while i never was a fan of those elderflower drinks that became so popular over the last couple of years as a fizzy refreshment throughout the summer i just love love love compote of ripe elderberries. it was my grandmother's trademark dessert and my mum makes it equally well. i guess this autumn it is finally time for me to tackle this heirloom recipe! i'll still have some time until then, so i better not munch away those bushes lining the streets in my neighborhood!

22. Mai 2008

great. now my laptop breaks down.


now that i finally manage to scrape the money together for my recent dental work (the option was *NO FRONT TOOTH!*) my stupid laptop breaks down! so i might be offline for a while. and i even made pictures of a recent meal for [dinner for one], damn!!

do you have too much money?
do you want to buy me a pc?


it's pretty shameless to pump you for gadgets, i know.
but i am also broke and a little sad right now.

20. Mai 2008

oh, i love denglish!

alphabet soup
question mark! exclamation mark!

i tend to intersperse my sentences with english words, which must be pretty annoying at times ... when i spottet this book "cook it vegetarisch" i thought i'd just go ahead and buy it! as you might imagine, i am also very susceptible to denglish!

it might help me to get things going again, huh?

and i bought alphabet soup.

15. Mai 2008

top 10 pictures

celine of black.salt tagged me! sure, she is totally stroking my ego, because she's actually inviting me to show off my top 10 pictures ... "yes of course", says my ego, "we'll do that!" so i head over to my flickr-account to check out what other people think are my best pictures. most of them are my fav's also! wow, i already forgot so many of the delicious foods i made! and i feel a little bit stupid for abandoning my blog for so long ... plus, my ego just tells me: "gerda, we will *never* narrow our favorite pictures down to just ten!" ;) well, i'll give it a try, okay?

10 hokkaidokürbissuppe mit zucchini

hokkaidokürbissuppe mit zucchini
09 würzig marinierte sardinen

würzig marinierte sardinen
08 buckwheat
(i'll always love this photo. my foodblog started out with these buckwheat-pix!)

07 rindsuppe mit grießnockerl (semolina dumplings in broth)

rindsuppe mit grießnockerl (semolina dumplings in broth)
06 australische nationalfeiertagscookies ... oder so

australische nationalfeiertagscookies ... oder so ...
05 orangenmarmelade

04 putenschnitzen / bauerntoast-style

putenschnitzen / bauerntoast-style
03 crumpets!

02 knoblauchcremesuppe

01 ricotta pancakes with fruit on top

ricotta pancakes with fruit on top
wow, that's really tough! i can't decide, i cant't decide!! now:

1. post 10 of your own favourite food shots
2. pass the opportunity on to others by tagging 5 fellow food bloggers, leaving a message on their comments page just so they’re aware of it.
after my absence i might be a little out of touch with the foodie world, so i leave this tag open. feel free to show me your top 10 pictures, my friend!

please leave a comment here if you like to join and show off!