summer recipe

Long time no see

Hello again,

after vanishing from the blogging world for the last couple of months I finally found the motivating to write again. I do have to admit I got a little lazy, but I needed some time off to regain my creative energy after an exhausting start of the year. So instead of blogging I moved houses, went on holidays and spent lots of fun nights with friends.

One of the most memoreable ones took place about three weeks ago when I went to the first “Schnippeldisko” of my life. The event was organized by Slow Food Youth Düsseldorf and intended to raise awareness for food waste. So my friends (read Amanda’s beautiful article about it) and I spent the night dancing, drinking and chopping heart-shaped potatoes, weird-looking radishes and bent carrots. The food came from a local farmer who explained to us it wasn’t perfect enough for supermarkets, so it would normally have to get thrown out – a thing that is just absolutely outrageous and sad, especially if you take into account that nothing was wrong with the food apart from its shape. The “Schnippel-dinner” proved that: The ingredients were used to cook delicious soup, a yummy side salad and a fruit salad as dessert for everyone.

Schnippeldisko

As a result of this night I’m trying to avoid food waste even harder which led to some crazy combinations on my dinner table. For example I’ve been eating nothing but asparagus for dinner for the last five days (asparagus with hollandaise sauce turned into asparagus soup turned into asparagus pasta sauce turned into asparagus sauce for German dumplings) – and suddenly my creativity is back 🙂 So before I vanish from the blogging sphere again (I decided not to overdo it, so I won’t post as regularly as I used to), I want to share an easy summer recipe with you – gazpacho soup.

It’s a great leftover recipe for using up old bread and it’s really super-quick. For 4-6 portions use:

1-2 stale bread rolls or slices of bread

5 medium-sized tomatos

1 green or yellow bell pepper

2/3 of a cucumber

2 cloves of garlic

1 tsp of lemon juice

1 TS of balsamic vinegar

salt

black pepper

parsley for decoration

optional: 1 tsp of sugar (only if the soup is too sour for you)

Soak the bread in a bit of water and let it get all soaked up for about 20 to 45 minutes (depending on how stale it is). Pour hot water over the tomatos and peel them. Then chop everything up and blend it together. Add the bread and blend again. Use tomato cubes and parsley for decoration.

Enjoy!

Gazpacho

 

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This is jam hot… again

Peach jam with coconut and mint – A project inspired by Leckerbox’s MittwochsBox #26

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Mixed berry jam, drunken yellow plum jam and fruity tomato chutney – If you follow my blog, you probably know that this year is all about jam for me. This is due to my family providing an never-ending supply of fruits and vegetables from their amazing garden(s). So guess what my contribution to this week’s MittwochsBox (read more about MittwochBox here) is…? Let me give you a hint: It’s sweet, it’s fruity and it fits in a glass jar. OK, I’ll promise I’ll stop doing that. I’m talking serious stuff now: I made peach jam with coconut and mint, probably the most extravagant “spread” I’ve ever made – filled as usual in old glass jars which I re-used for this purpose. Here are the works for four glasses of jam:

1 kg of peaches

500 g of jam sugar (It always depends on the brand, so check the label to make sure you use the right amount)

a good handful of Moroccan mint leaves

4-6 TS of coconut sprinkles

The preparation is as simple as usual: I washed the peaches, removed the pips and cut them into small cubes. I put them in a saucepan together with the mint and coconut and carefully blended everything. Then I added the jam sugar, turned up the heat of the cooker to a maximum and let everything boil for about five minutes. I immediately filled everything into the jam glasses (make sure they’re clean, you might want to boil them in hot water to sterilize them) and put them upside down for 5 minutes. The jam takes a few hours to harden up.

Pear jam with coconut and mint

Peach jam with coconut and mint

Et voilá, I got myself a really unusual bread spread. If you decorate the jam glass (This time I cut out old newspaper ads with peaches), you’ve got a pretty unique gift as well.

Red millet salad in a glass jar – MittwochsBox #21

Another creative re-use idea for the kitchen

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As I wrote in one of my former posts, I’ve got an ever-growing pile of glass jars at home. Instead of putting them in the recycling bin, I usually try to re-use them at home first. So I started using glass jars for many different purposes, as vases, food and drink containers, flower pots and so on.

Today’s project turns them into pretty kitchen equipment. Instead of serving my salad on a boring plate or bowl, I’ll serve them in old jars – With that simple trick the entire meal looks more sophisticated straight away. It’s also a great alternative to buying new dishes for bigger occasions like dinner parties. (I’ve never had matching porcelain for example and just to make it look nice for one night, I would never buy a whole bunch of new things) So just serve your meals in old glass jars and it will instantly make you look like a gourmet chef 🙂

What you can fill them with? Here’s an idea: Turkish red millet salat. Why red? It’s a project inspired by Leckerbox’s ”MittwochsBox #21′‘ (I participated in it last week as well. Look here, this is the original post.) and this week’s topic is ”red”. Millet salad one of my favourite summer meals, it’s so simple and easy and it’s a great addition to every picnic or barbecue. And did I mention that it’s vegetarian, vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free and free of nuts and soy? So you can basically serve it to everyone. This is what I used in my salad (4-6 servings):

1 cup of millet
2 cups of water
4 spring onions, chopped in rings
1 big clove of garlic, chopped finely
a big handful of fresh parsley, chopped finely
1 TS of tomato puree
1 TS of Turkish pepper paste (alternatively 1 tsp of harissa paste)
2 TS of olive oil
1 squeezed lemon
1 tsp of pul biber (Turkish paprika spice, alternatively normal paprika)
a handful of fresh spinach salad, chopped in stripes
1 (mild) red pepper
1-2 tsp sea salt
a bit of freshly ground pepper
2 TS of sesame

The preparation couldn’t be easier: Just put 1 cup of millet and two cups of lightly salted water in a pot, bring it to the boil and boil it for about 5 minutes. Then turn off the heat and let it sit for another ten minutes. In the meantime you can roast the sesame in a pan for a minute and cut the rest of the veggies. After that mix all your ingredients. (Mix them well and try to cover everything with the tomato paste – a spoon helps with that.)

P1080593And here’s a fancy looking dish that doesn’t break the bank:

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