31. Dezember 2006

lime coconut fudge

or: how to make your own homemade bounty bar!

i found the recipe over at is that my buréka? and i thought it was a bit weird at first that you would actually use a potato in a confection sweet. but it just sounded just too good not to try. i have no idea how these little babies should taste, but with my bountybar fantasy in mind i figured i just try to make bite sized minibars.

30 g mashed potato
150 g icing sugar
60 g unsweetened dried coconut shreds
1 tbsp lime zest
150 g milk chocolate

i'm suggesting you turn to burekaboy for the original recipe (because i think i went a little coo-coo on the recipe) and i'll present my little photo lovestory over here:

homemade bounty bar (or lime coconut fudge)

homemade bounty bar (or lime coconut fudge)

homemade bounty bar (or lime coconut fudge)

homemade bounty bar (or lime coconut fudge)

homemade bounty bar (or lime coconut fudge)

homemade bounty bar (or lime coconut fudge)

homemade bounty bar (or lime coconut fudge)
store the coconut/lime/chocolate-bits in an airtight container in the fridge.
... or better yet: store them in your belly!

homemade bounty bar (or lime coconut fudge)
and i have to admit: they taste exactly like my favorite chocolate bar!

maybe austrian potatos are different, but i had to use more sugar and much less dried coconut shreds. i also was very surprised that the potato turned all liquid once i added the sugar (apparently because of the potato's starch). they also did not have any peppermint extract at my local supermarket, so i added twice as much lemon zest (if i could marry lemon zest, i probably would! yumm-mmmiiieeee!!). maybe i screwed up the recipe after all, i am always shilly-shally about converting between metric and imperial system. i hate that and its really stupid since i actually am a total tech girl ... but burekaboy suggested a useful tool for all my future cooking conversions!

i absolutely love those little mini bars taken from the delicious peppermint & lime coconut fudge. that recipe is definitely a keeper! i might gain a few kilos if i keep making this candy and all my teeth will fall out eventually - but believe me, it's totally worth it!

and with this last post of 2006 i want to thank you all for stopping by from time to time!

it has been a great year for me and i have made a couple of great friends with my little foodblog! i hope you had a good year too and 2007 is getting even better!

i wish you and your loved ones a happy and healthy 2007!

29. Dezember 2006

everything, everything, everything

there was an interesting challenge over at becks and posh somewhen in november: the "every single thing i ate and drank last week" - task. i was not up to join in the fun back then. i hesitated because i was afraid it might bring out my darkest cravings for the whole world to see ... too revealing, much too revealing! i was not at all prepared to let that happen!

but i made up my mind. i thought i could just stop being a coward and make one (and ony ONE) new years resolution for this very first week of 2007: take pictures of everything you eat and drink, gerda. but seriousely. no matter if i dig into a box of cereals in the afternoon or if i put a big chunk of chocolate into my mouth right before going to bed ... i will share it all with you. no cheating, i promise.

so ... are you even interested?

well, at least it will be a therapeutical new years resolution for yours truly.
watch out my friends, it's gonna be interesting!
and it'll probably look something like my dishes-photoset on flickr:

you could help me revive the becks and posh challenge if you also missed it two months ago! or you could just check out my adventures in eating and drinking over the next week ...

23. Dezember 2006

happy christmas!

"it's christmas! and unless you get your sorry ass in gear another holiday is gonna pass and all you'll have to show is your name urinated in snow!"

"but i like urinating my name in snow! almost as much as i like touching myself!"

hello friends!

i wish it was snowing in austria (not that i'd be able to pee my name in the snow ...), but staying with my folks for the past days definitely got me into the right mood. i'll only be taking a tiny holiday blogging break and i'll be back in a few days. now let me wish you

happy holiday to you and your loved ones!
enjoy lots of good food!
(and blog about it, please *g*)

21. Dezember 2006

risotto with leek, broccoli and feta

i have another fine dish for you that will soothe your tummy and tastes totally yummie! yes my friends, i am ryming. because i am finally over the stomache-ache. i am on my feet again.

1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium leek, chopped
125 g rice
125 g broccoli
50 g feta
600 ml vegetable broth
  1. cook broccoli for 10 minutes and make sure it's not overcooked. it will later be added to the risotto and has some more time to cook
  2. heat olive oil in a pot (or saucepan) over medium heat
  3. stir in leek and cook until it is just begining to turn color
  4. pour in the rice and stir until the rice is coatet in oil. stir for 2 to 3 minutes
  5. stir in one third of the vegetable broth and continue stirring until incorporated.
  6. repeat this process untill all the liquid is absorbed (should take about 20 minutes)
  7. when you pour in the last broth add the broccoli as well
  8. once the rice is toroughly cooked add the feta and stir until it has melted
  9. season to taste and serve
risotto: lauch, broccoli und feta

18. Dezember 2006

lets smoke out the malady ...

... with the scent of oranges, shall we?

several fairly large oranges have piled up over the last weeks due to my loss of appetite. actually, i did not use the content of my farm box at all. sure, i could have cancelled the delivery for a while, but i gave my veggies to my mother instead. she ran some errands in linz past week and she happily took all the organic food off my hands (minus apples and oranges).

when i bookmarked this recipe for orangettes over at smitten kitchen a while ago (i am totally smitten by that blog, btw) i figured i'd make those someday along the way ...

well, along the way is today! i am using up the whole batch of these organic oranges and i'll make orangettes and orange marmalade. the orangettes will definitely go into my adventcookie collection for future reference. honestly - i suppose i just will make this candy all year long whenever i peel oranges ...

this first batch probably gets zero points for their messy appearance - i think i have to work on my presentation next time. i did not find a decent way to cover them propperly in all that chocolate! i'm not too experienced with candy making and so i was virtually stuck in chocolate up to my elbows when i was finally done covering the slices ... (stuck in chocolate?! is there really anything wrong with that?)

however, they taste marvellous despite this messy overall impression.

orangettes: dip in dark chocolate

orangettes (original recipe at the food network)

4 large oranges
8 ounces water
8 ounces sugar
16 ounces dark chocolate
16 ounces bitter cocoa powder
  1. Slice the ends off of the oranges, score the peel from one end to the other, and remove the peels off the oranges.

    orangettes: peel
  2. Slice the peels into thin strips and trim the edges.

  3. Using a medium size pot, place the peels in boiling water and blanch them for a few minutes. Rinse the peels, and repeat this process a second time. This is done to remove the bitterness of the peels.

  4. Prepare the simple syrup by combining the water and sugar in a sauce pot. Bring the syrup to a simmer, place the peels in the pot, and simmer for 1 hour. Once the peels have cooked, remove them from the pot, and place on a rack to cool and drain.

    orangettes: cool and drain
  5. Melt the dark chocolate over a double boiler. Dip the candied orange peels in the chocolate, remove them quickly, and roll them in the cocoa powder. Store the orange peels in an airtight container.

make sure to watch the pot while you cook the peels in the syrup! okay, a watched pot never boils, but you will quickly notice that if you set the temperature too high the water may boil off quickly and your slices will start to burn! if there's too little water in the pot just add some more and reduce heat!

the oranges themselves where quickly transformed into orange marmalade:

sugar high friday # 26

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17. Dezember 2006

a heavenly combination: apple / cinnamon / semolina

my sick stomache is slowly recovering and i want to thank you all for your kind words! right now i am having my first coffee in over a week (and i am usually a total coffee person). i am taking little sips of heaven! coffee is divine!

regarding all your tips about a stomache-friendly dish i decided to go with a sweet one (lacking a soup hen) for a start. so i am preparing a big pot of a sweet porridge-style semolina dessert. i am making it not too sweet though. i still need to give my belly a break and i don't want to kickstart my digestion - baby steps, everyone! because i learned from experience that bowel cramps are no piece of cake!

mmmmh ..... cake! but no, silly me! let me get back to my semolina-dish instead!

as a child i was not a big fan of semolina, although it is a big part of bavarian and bohemian (hence mühlviertler) cuisine. whenever we would have a main dish made of semolina little gerda would go on strike! like a little suppenkaspar i'd yell "i hate semolina! i HATE semolina" ... and i would run straight to my room and pout all day long. or at least until supper.

do you know the suppenkaspar? it is a story in the (very cruel!) german children's book struwwelpeter. oh yes, i hated that book too! die geschichte vom suppen-kaspar (the story of augustus who did not have any soup) begins as kaspar, a healthy, strong boy, proclaims that he will no longer eat his soup. over the next five days he wastes away and dies. VERY questionable stories for little children, if you ask me ...

again, i am drifting off! now let me really get back to my semolina-dish! it is easy, quick, and it tastes really good. and above all it totally soothes my stomach.

grießpudding apfel/zimt

30 g semolina
300 ml milk
50 g yoghurt
1 apple
  1. core, peel and dice an apple and cook in a little water until tender. add cinnamon and mash the pieces up when they're done

    grießpudding apfel/zimt: apple sauce

  2. in a small saucepan, stir together milk and sugar (as much as you may like, i took one teapoon) and bring to a boil 

  3. immediately remove from the heat 

  4. stir in semolina and return to the stove

  5. bring to a boil over medium heat and stir until thickened

    grießpudding apfel/zimt

  6. remove from heat again and stir in the yoghurt

    grießpudding apfel/zimt: + yoghurt

  7. pour in a bowl and top with the apple sauce
(serves one person)

the yoghurt adds a fresh touch to the dish, but you can skip the yoghurt altogether if you like.
grießpudding apfel/zimt
semolina - friend or foe? i can see why i changed my mind- semolina is just too delish!

14. Dezember 2006

this is really sick

actually i am sick. please feel free to look up the term gastroenteritis in wikipedia. i don't want to chase you away, after all this is a blog about ingestion and not the opposite. all i'm going to tell you is that i virtually spent the last 5 days in the bathroom. i totally lost my appetite.

i haven't been seriousely sick in a few years and honestly - i hate it! i missed some important classes at university and i could not go to work either - but the worst thing probably is that i am bored out of my mind by now.

today i slowly crawled out of bed again and i instantly started to think about cooking - despite the fact that my stomach has been numbed by pain in the previous days. i am suddenly craving dairy products although i usually don't like milk at all (and i have trouble digesting it). so what should i do now? i have no idea how to cook for my sick self :) my mama would always have camomile tea and rusk (zwieback) at home for emergencies like this. but me? nope, nada.

it returned to my mind that there was a chapter in "my first cookbook" and that we learned about cooking for sick people in home economics when i was ten. obviously i did not pay enough attention back then because i still had my mother to take care of my misery.

now i need to cook something to get me going again. i passed grocery shopping with flying color (without fainting), eating something and keeping the morsels down should be doable!

do you have any secret recipes for a sick stomach? maybe chicken soup for the belly?

12. Dezember 2006

just a quick reminder: 2006 food blog awards

Food Blog Awards Logo

you can nominate your favorite foodblog by leaving a comment in the desired category. and though i want to nominate myself (only a little bit) i probably won't do that. there are simply too many brilliant food blogs out there i enjoy every day.

they really deserve that award. because all of them raised the bar pretty high to what a gread foodblog is. and my humble little foodblog here is only striving for getting anywhere close to the brilliancy and wittiness of my foodblog heroes.

now go and nominate your favorites!

6. Dezember 2006

let the pleasant anticipation begin: vanilla crescent christmas cookies

i jumped out of bed like a little child today! it's nikolaustag!

the tradition of saint nicholas is a big thing here in austria. it goes back to nikolaus von myra as you probably know and when i was a child this was one of my favorite festivities in the church year. i did not have a very religious upbringing and i rarely go to church today, i practically only attend weddings, funerals or christenings in my close family and circle of friends. i am not very fond of the fact that advent season starts around mid-november these days and that everything seems to become more and more kitschy and sponsored by coca cola ... but i still love love loooove to celebrate the festivities i couldn't wait for as a child.

us kids would always find little "nikolaussackerl" on the breakfast table decorated with a tiny little rod reminding us that we did not always behave well during the year. the "sackerl" contained little presents, nuts, tangerines, apples, oranges, candy and a little saint nikolaus made of chocolate. while we where still very small children a person dressed up as st. nikolaus acompanied by the evil krampus would knock on our door in the evening, inquire about our behaviour and bring the presents himself. while i just adored the bishop with his flowing beard, miter and staff, i was always very afraid of the krampus, the evil helper that would discipline bad children with his rod and take them away ... of course we never were beaten up by this guy, but if you ask me threatening children to hit them if the are naughty is a very questionable educatinal method!

my mama still made us little presents on nikolaus day as we became teenagers and young adults and so i am still really into this children's holiday ... mama spoiled us for life!

as i am living alone and further away from my family now i need to treat myself to a little st. nikolaus celebration. that day usually marks the start of advent season for me. i throw in a little "last christmas" (kitsch, you say?!) and get in the mood.

and i start baking.

my late grandmother was famous for her vanillekipferl (vanilla crescent chrismas cookies or vanilla cornets in english) and although i can not look back on 60 years of baking experience (yet) i try my best today and make these cookies just like she used to make them. let me share the recipe:

vanillekipferl / vanilla crescent chrismas cookies
300 g flour
50 g sugar
1 pack of vanilla sugar
200 g soft butter
100 g ground hazelnuts
5 tbsp lukewarm milk
2 packs of vanilla sugar mixed with confectioners' sugar
  1. in a bowl, knead all ingredients until you get a dough of firm texture. be careful, the more you knead the more the butter in the mixture will soften. so work rather fast. start by creaming together butter and sugar and add the flour and the other ingredients after that
  2. let the dough rest (you can put it in the fridge) for half an hour. cover with wax paper
  3. preheat oven to 180 °c
  4. pinch off walnut sized pieces of the dough and place them on a cutting board
  5. vanillekipferl / vanilla crescent chrismas cookies
    roll each one into a strip and shape them by pulling the strips into a semi-circle
  6. arrange the crescents on a baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes
  7. coming straight out of the oven (still hot!) either dust them with a mixture of confectioners' sugar and vanilla sugar or simply pull every single crescent through the sugar mixture in a flat dish or a little bowl
vanillekipferl / vanilla crescent chrismas cookies
they turned out pretty fine although it took a while until i figured out the best way to roll those little strips into crescents. the second batch was by far less crooked than the first one! i wonder what my grandmother would say if she was still alive - i bet she would secretly think "mine are better" but i am also sure that she would be really glad that her former tomboy granddaughter is finally transforming into a domestic maniac cherishing and treasuring her legacy.

where did all the broken crescents go, you ask?

well ... straight into my mouth, baby!

3. Dezember 2006

chicken curry with steamed fennel on the side

i have been invited to join the masala mambo group on flickr - is there a better excuse to cook something india-inspired? i haven't cooked with indian spices in a while so i am really looking forward to this dish. i'm gonna have myself a little chicken curry with steamed fennel on the side. i have to admit that my sister is much more creative when it comes to indian cooking. she just loves indian food and owns about twice as many indian spices than i do. she also likes to experiment with almonds and grapes in her curries ... since i have neither of her secret ingredients at home, i am going to stick to the only remotely creative verison of a curry i am able to cook ... because i just love the taste of coconut milk! this curry is also quite hot due to the (massive!) amount of ground pepper in it. if you don't like it that hot i suggest you don't put any pepper in it and just season to taste with pepper at the end. i like all my dishes very mild and i rarely use black pepper at all, but every once in a while i can handle a spicy dish. the steamed fennel goes particularly well with that curry, it seems to soften all the spices.

chicken curry with steamed fennel on the side
1 diced onion
15 g fresh ginger, minced
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 tablespoon curcuma
1/2 tablespoon ground coriander
1/2 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
350 g chicken breast, diced
250 ml coconut milk
100 ml cream
  1. in a pot, heat 1 tbsp vegetable oil and gently fry diced onion and minced ginger.
  2. add curry powder, curcuma, coriander and black pepper and increase heat.
  3. stir for a little while and then add the diced chicken breast.
  4. roast for another 10 minutes or so
  5. finally add coconut milk, cream (i used rama creme fin) and bay leaf, cover and let simmer on low heat for at least 20 minutes.
  6. season to taste - works well with steamed veggies or rice as a side dish.
chicken curry with steamed fennel on the side
i met my old friend christa the other day. i haven't spoken to her in like 10 years and i was really happy to see her. she is married now and her husband is from india - maybe if we revive this old friendship i can learn from her (or the husband) how to cook a propper indian meal *g*

anyway, i need to look for my bend it like beckham-dvd now.
whenever i cook indian food this movie pops into my head!

and of course i start to reminisce about my time in london (are you getting sick of my nostalgia and my stories of london?). i took a language class at ealing tertiary college and i quickly became a fan of the southasian lifestyle that was omnipresent in and around ealing. my favorite foodrelated locations in london are wembley and ealing ... i am still very fond of the colourfull things and flavours and i can't get enough of the local cornershops there.

man, i can not wait another 10 years before visitin london again. though i lived there 10 years ago i did not feel like a tourist at all on my trip this spring. certainly, very much has changed, but i guess i lost my heart for good ...