Archive for the ‘baking’ Category

It’s been too long since I posted a pie recipe, I feel. Let me remedy that.

This pie is a recipe that I adapted from the medieval recipe for Torta of Herbs in the Month of May, and I think that it works just as well as a savoury entree or main dish as for a sweet dessert. Personally, I prefer the savoury version, substitute my own favourite herbs and reduce the sugar in it, so here’s my personal recipe:

Spring tarte

For the pie shell: 2 cups of flour and 1 cup of rolled oats, 150g (salted) butter, a dash of water.
Makes a standard pie shell, but the oats give the whole thing an interesting bite! If the dough doesn’t want to come together, add a bit more flour or reduce the amount of oats.

For the filling:
2-3 eggs (depending on size)
2Tsp. thick Turkish yoghurt
ca. 75g yellow cheese (Gouda works well)
1 big handful of fresh herbs of your choice, e.g.:
– Basil
– Mint
– Oregano
– Parsley
1tsp. honey.
Grind the cheese in the blender first, then add the rest of the ingredients and blend until the herbs are chopped fine. Pour out into your pre-baked pie crust and bake at 200C for ca. 20 minutes (or until done).
For a sweet variant add grated ginger and more honey/sugar, and perhaps replace the yoghurt and yellow cheese with some sort of fresh cheese or cream cheese.

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Wishing you all a lovely Easter, a few days of rest and relaxation and a fantastic time!

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Christmas cookies

What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than baking Christmas cookies with friends?

Plain cookies with lemon glazing or without, stuck together with jelly or not, Austrian Vanillekipferln, chewy Zimtsterne and ginger cookies.

I would write up the last recipe but it’s my grandmother’s…so shh!

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Fried Halloumi, homegrown cherry tomatos, candy, and a homegrown mini pepper stuffed with feta/yoghurt spread on rucola and parsley.
The couscous is mixed with boiled quinoa and Amaranth grain, which isn’t just pretty but also tastes deliciously nutty!

…Happiness is a warm cake…

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Happy Easter to all you Werebunnies! Hope you had a great day, spring weather and lovely eggs to munch on.

(also, baking Osterpinzen this year I noticed that WereRabbits is now the #1 Google hit for this search term! Not for “Osterpinze” (singular) though – let’s amend this with an updated recipe:

Makes 4 big ones (with egg) or 6 small-ish, bun-sized ones.

500g flour
30g yeast (the non-dry kind)
125ml milk
4 yolks
1 yolk + 1 whole egg for brushing
125ml dry white wine (can substitute water&lemon zest)
5 Tsp. sugar
100g butter
pinch of salt
lemon zest.
4 easter eggs for putting in the pinze, if you like.

I liked the assembly instructions of this recipe, and it made the dough a lot easier to handle than the last one:
Put the flour into a big yeasting bowl. Warm the milk to room temp and add the yeast, then pour the mix on top of the flour (best to make a small depression into the flour, like a bowl). Sprinkle with some leftover flour and let yeast for about 15 minutes or until nice and frothy.
In the meanwhile, prepare the rest of the ingredients. Warm the sugar, wine and butter and combine. Part the eggs (if you don’t know what to do with the leftover eggwhites, freeze them for later or – I just saw a video about a nice egg mask for your face…).
When you’re done, add the yolks and the wine-butter-sugar mixture to your dough, and stir until a nice dough is formed and doesn’t stick to the bowl any more. Let it yease until the dough has doubled in volume. In the meanwhile, if you haven’t already, boil and dye your easter eggs.
When the dough has doubled in volume, punch it down, cut into 4-6 pieces (I made 4, which are nice and big enough to stick eggs in them), roll the pieces into smooth balls and put on a baking tray lined with paper. Brush with the remaining yolk-and-egg mixture. Let rise for another 15-30 minutes. In the meanwhile, preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
Brush again with the egg mixture. Using a clean pair of scissors, make three cuts into each ball. Brush one last time. Make an X-shaped incision in the top and gently press the egg into it. Put it in the oven and bake until golden brown (I used 10-15 minutes with steam and another 10 without steam).

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Bento #232

A very simple bento today. Leftover Flammkuchen – it’s kind of a German pizza but with sourcream on top (I left out the bacon to make it vegetarian), lettuce, carrot stars and two chocolate easter eggs.

If you’re interested in Flammkuchen, the lovely Meeta from What’s for Lunch, Honey? has a nice writeup about what it is, and where it is eaten, on her blog. Personally, I use my standard pizza dough recipe, yoghurt because I still don’t like sourcream, and I caramelized the onions in a pan before putting them on instead of slicing them thin because that way they got a lot more taste to make up for the missing bacon.
I’m on a caramelized onion trip. I’ve been putting them into nearly everything right now. OTOH, that saves me on other vegetables, which are just insanely expensive before spring!

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Bento #224

Big box (top): Mushroom and leek omelette on homemade dark bread, carrot and celery sticks, cherry tomato decoration
Small box (bottom): Hummus to dip the veggies into, mini Kitkat bar, pickled beans and onions, carrot flowers.

BF gets the same in his usual box. He also gets some sundried tomatoes, and no beans because he hasn’t started liking the texture yet. But instead his pickled onion makes a pretty rose!

I made my own sourdough bread today! I finally had the time to try out my yeasing form. Don’t you love the spiral?
This is the shape and type of bread I grew up with. It’s How Bread Should Look Like [TM]. (And taste like. Mmm, dark sourdough.)

I’m still filing on the recipe, but the general recipe I started out with is this:
350g sourdough starter made the day before
350g rye flour
400g wheat flour (I used 350g spelt + 50g wheat)
350g lukewarm water
2 tsp salt
1 Tsp oil
1 tsp yeast to help the sourdough along (this is probably a remnant of the recipe that mixed in heavy walnuts, and I’m going to try without next time).

Knead for 5 minutes, let rise for 45 minutes. Knead more, make two dough balls and let rise 2 hours in the yeasing baskets.
Start the oven at 240 degrees but reduce the heat to 180 when putting in the bread. Bake 45 minutes.

I’ll be posting updates as soon as I start to feel confident about my baking!

(Yes mom, I know you’re reading this, and I’m probably Doing It All Wrong :D )

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Homemade pizza pockets with mushrooms on lettuce, some spinach with garlic in a cup, sundried and non-dried tomatos, cress, grapes, a bottle of vinegar and a minimuffin.

The BF’s pizza pocket got prettier. I don’t know why mine fell in and didn’t get as nice and poofy!

They’re filled with tomato sauce (the best pizza sauce is tomato puree saturated with herbs and one or two tsp of sugar), sliced mushrooms, onions and cheese.

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This is how I roll!

(Get it? Roll. Hur hur. I kill myself)

I somehow don’t think I’ll ever really understand baking.

You may have noticed that I’ve been trying to teach myself to bake recently. :) Although I haven’t been blogging everything yet (I’ve also been a bit too stressed to blog) I think I can say that I’ve made progress.
But then you might call it stubborn of me that, even though I’m an inexperienced baker, I keep trying to throw myself at two of the harder incarnations of bread – sourdough and ciabatta. And sometimes both. And it takes a lot of time, and it’s hard, and I’m reminded every time of how little I know.

But then today I gave up and just threw caution to the wind. “Can you make a bread after the flatbread recipe, but with a sourdough starter and in less than one day?”
Turns out that I could! And it was much easier and much quicker than the ciabattas.

I made my starter with one spoon of culture, one cup of flour and one cup of water at lunchtime (when I got up – it’s Sunday after all!) and left it to rise during the afternoon. Some time later, I mixed it with three more cups, half a cup of lukewarm water, olive oil and salt to form a springy, not too sticky dough.
I had learned from my flatbread experiments that it rises best in an oiled bowl that you set into another bowl of lukewarm water. So that’s where it went. It didn’t quite do much for a long while though – until I remembered that being sourdough, it probably wanted to be folded! And indeed – after a single folding it began to rise beautifully!
At that time I ran out of time and patience and time, so I didn’t let it rise as much as it probably could have. But when I poured it out of the bowl, it was indeed a bubbly and smooth dough. I gently cut it into six buns and let them rise a bit more before baking (with steam in the oven) at 230 deg C for five minutes.

When I looked into the oven again, I had – sourdough zeppelins! :D

Crusty outside, with a moist crumb and big bubbles inside – they were simply fantastic with fried Halloumi, lettuce, tomatoes and red onions and a little reduced balsam vinegar dressing.

So, today’s lesson – I seem to bake better when I don’t worry so much about what the grownups are doing :)

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Pide on a Thursday!

To all my readers from the USA, happy Thanksgiving! We don’t celebrate it here, but my thoughts are with you. Mmm… a holiday dedicated to having delicious food… what’s not to love?

From my side, I’ll be sharing some baking love:
I love Turkish flatbread (Pide) and I couldn’t resist making it myself. I’ve been wanting to do it all week, but I couldn’t find the flour I wanted (SaltĂ„ Kvarn wheat flour, biodynamic and all that) until today.
I took a very basic recipe from RecipeZaar but halved it and added some of my own decorations.

Two comments to the recipe in advance:
1. The dough gets less sticky if you add as little water at one time as possible and stop as soon as the dough is not crumbly anymore. It still rose beautifully for me.
2. DON’T roll it out, toss the circles gently by hand.

Here are the rolls covered in olive oil, ready to go into the oven.
I love the taste of Nigella seeds – but until last week I didn’t know the name of the spice! Now that I do, I plan to use it a LOT. I know it’s used on bread a lot, so that was my first test.

This photo is taken literally seconds after the first breads went into the oven. See how poofy they became immediately?

And done. They bake quite quickly! Super stress free, cooking with half an hour intervals where you can get other work done and then you just pop them into the oven and WHOOSH! Delicious bread in 5 minutes!

Look at the pretty, pretty crust and bubbles!

And yes – delicious! Happy Thanksgiving!

PS: It also works great as Focaccia with coarse salt and rosemary on top:

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