Archive for January, 2005

Taco Pie

Monday, January 31st, 2005

Taco Pie with Quorn

Taco Pie is one of my favourite dishes, and all my non-vegetarian friends that have tasted it really like it. The pie is delicous, so give it a try! You won’t be dissapointed. If you don’t want to use quorn, you can use ground beef instead (500 grams, and only one bag of Taco spice and 100 milliliter water as meat doesn’t absorb as much liquid/spices as quorn).

Taco Pie

Quorn Filling:
300 gram quorn grounds
1,5 bag of Taco spice
200 milliliter water
powder cayenne pepper
1 onion
2-3 garlic cloves

Pie Crust:
350 milliliter white flour
a pinch of salt
125 gram butter
3 tbsp cold water

White Filling:
4 tbsp mayonaise
200 milliliter crème fraiche
250 milliliter grated cheese
1 finely chopped fresh red chili (just be careful so you don’t take a really hot one. Adjust the amount depending on how hot it is).

2 chopped tomatoes

Combine the butter with the flour and the salt in a food processor (or by hand). Add the water so the mixture becomes a dough.

Divide the dough in a baking tin making a crust. Put the tin in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. Bake the crust in 200 degrees C for about 12 minutes until golden.

Do the quorn filling by frying the onion and garlic in a frying pan. Add the quorn, water, taco spices and pepper. Let simmer for 5 minutes. Fill the crust with the quorn filling.

Cover the quorn filling with the chopped tomatoes.

Combine the mayonaise with the cheese, chili pepper and crème fraiche.

Cover the tomatoes with the white sauce.

Bake in oven for about 20 minutes in 225 degrees C, until the pie is golden brown. Serve the pie with a sallad.

M for him, Q for her

Friday, January 28th, 2005

Fredrik arrived from Stockholm yesterday and I prepared a late dinner just minutes before he arrived. I found a very easy and quick recipe in a magazine that I get from my food store, but I adapted it slightly as I wanted to make meat burgers for Fredrik and Quorn burgers for myself. The recipe was only for meat so I made up my own vegetarian burgers. The dish is very easy, the meat and quorn burgers are fried in separate frying pans and the sauce is mixed in a bowl and then poured over the burgers.

After reading Anne’s comment about this dish, I realized that I didn’t write what we thought about the food so I’ll just add a few words. The quorn burgers turned out so-so, maybe they would taste better with more spices. I must also mention that the quorn burgers absorbed almost all of the sauce, so I would recommend to double the batch. Fredrik liked his burgers and as I don’t eat meat I have to believe him :-)

2 Kinds of Burgers in Tomatoe Sauce with Fusilli and Red Onion

Quorn Burgers
150 g Quorn Mince (UK) / Quorn Grounds (US) / Quorn-färs (SE)
1 egg
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sweet pepper powder
powder Cayenne pepper
1 tbsp potato flour
0,5 deciliter cream
2 tbsp dried breadcrumbs
2 tbsp water

Mix the breadcrumbs with water and put aside for a few minutes. Combine all other ingredients and then add the breadcrumb mixture. Shape into 4 patties and fry in butter.

Meat Burgers
200 g minced meat (beef)
0,75 tbsp potato flour
0,5 deciliter cream
0,75 tsp salt
1 tsp sweet pepper
powder Cayenne pepper

Combine all ingredients and shape into 2 patties. Fry the patties in butter.

Creamy Tomatoe Sauce
1 deciliter cream
1 tsp Soya sauce (Chinese)
1 can chopped conserved tomatoes
1,5 garlic clove, chopped

Strain the tomatoes as much as you can. Combine the tomatoes with the rest of the ingredients. Pour half of the sauce in the frying pan with quorn and half in the frying pan with meat. Let simmer for 6 minutes.

Serve the burgers with pasta (Fusilli) and finely chopped red onion.

IMBB 11: Beans

Sunday, January 23rd, 2005

Red Lentil Soup and Sesame Crescent Rolls

Today it’s time for the 11th installment of Is My Blog Burning? As I’m rather new as a food blogger this is my first online collective food blogging event and I have really been looking forward to it. So what is Is My Blog Burning, also known as IMBB? Each month a food blogger sets up a new theme with a central food component and all partipicants then come up with an appropriate recipe.

This month’s IMBB is hosted by Cathy of My Little Kitchen and the theme is beans. I don’t eat much beans, but I do eat lentils, especially red ones as they only demand 10 minutes of cooking. I wanted to come up with a great recipe, but as I’m unfortunately totally broke due to our trip to the Maldives in December, reality decided something different. I just had to use the ingredients that I already had at home, which resulted in a Red Lentil Soup and Sesame Crescent Rolls. The soup is really nice, BUT not after eating it almost everyday during the last week :-) It will take some time before I make it again. Sooner or later you get tired of food that you eat too often…

Red Lentil Soup

1.5 deciliter dried rinsed red lentils
1 onion
2 carrots
2 tomatoes
2 tps curry
2 stock cubes (vegetable)
1 litre water
2 bay leafs

Chop and fry the onion. Add the curry and fry for a minute. Add the rest of the ingredients and let simmer under a lid for 15 minutes.

Sesame Crescent Rolls

11 deciliters flour
4 deciliters water (37 degrees C)
1.5 tsp salt
1 tbsp oil
50 grams fresh yeast
sesame seeds

Dissolve the yeast in the water in a bowl. Add oil, salt and some of the flour. Mix well with a large wodden spoon and continue adding flour until the dough holds it shape and is smooth. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel, and let the dough rest warm until it has doubled in size (about 30 minutes). Heat the oven to 225 degrees C. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, add more flour if needed. Divide the dough into two parts. Roll the one half of the dough into a circle and cut the circle into 8 wedges. Roll up each wedge tightly from wide end to point, forming a crescent. Place the crescents point side down and slightly curved on a baking tin. Do another 8 crescent rolls with the remaining dough and put them on another baking tin. Cover the crescents with a kitchen towel and let rise until double in size (about 20 minutes). Brush the crescent rolls with water and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.

Risky Chicken

Thursday, January 20th, 2005

The food blogs are driving me crazy… You may wonder why? Well, as a lacto-ovo vegetarian I only eat vegetables, eggs and dairy products. And as I’m not a faithful vegetarian I also eat fish. I started with this diet about 5 years ago as I’ve never been especially fond of meat. The first years of this diet I also ate chicken, as most people say that white chicken meat is healthier than red meat. But that was before I got ill… One spring day in 2003 my knees swelled up and the following months consisted of operations, medicine and uncertainty. The doctors didn’t know what was wrong with me, and the pain was killing me, furthermore I could’t walk properly so the summer was spent at home in pain. Finally the doctors came to the conclusion that I had eaten chicken infected with campylobacterias. Most people that get a campylobacter infection only get diarrhoea, but a small percent get a reactive inflammation that attacs the bigger joints in the body, in my case knees and left wrist. The treatment that I got was special rheumatic medicine and cortison injections and the doctor’s told me that it could take two years to get well but also that there is a risk that it has become chronic.

The chicken that made me ill was rather easy to trace. The whole spring of 2003 I ate chicken for lunch everyday, bought from one of two Thai restaurants near my former job. Every evening I only had cheese sandwiches for dinner, so I came to the conclusion that it was one of the two restaurant’s fault. Anyway since that episode I don’t eat chicken, only very very seldom when I get an enormous urge for it and I cook it myself at home. But most of the time I just loathe it…
It’s now been almost 2 years since I got the inflammation and even though there has been a mayor improvement during the last 6 months I still have pain, and even if I don’t have as much reduced mobilty as I had earlier, I still have problems with pain, walking in stairs and bending my knees.

Fredrik loves meat in almost all shapes, except for lamb’s brain etc, and at home we have to be imaginative when cooking dinner. Most of the time we always figure something out (thank God for Quorn) or we just go to a restaurant so that both of us get what we want. One of our favourite dishes at home is baked potatoes. We eat them with chopped red onions, sour cream, Crème Bonjour Cuisine with Pepper and Crème Bonjour Cuisine with chive (Crème Bonjour is absolutely amazing, but don’t confuse it with the cheese because I’m talking about a totally different product, a kind of cream or something). In addition to all theese things Fredrik eats bacon to the potatoes, and myself I eat corn. When Fredrik fries his bacon I always get a big urge even though I don’t really want to eat it. And it’s the same thing with most of the meat dishes that I read about in food blogs on the internet. Some of them sound so delicious, even though I probably would feel sick if I had to eat them. I’m a bit worried that the food blogs will ruin my diet and life, but we’ll see about that :-)

Fresh Salmon Cutlets

Monday, January 17th, 2005

Fresh Salmon Cutlets
I love fresh fish, especially Salmon. Earlier I always believed that it’s complicated to cook fish, but actually it’s so simple. And it’s the nearest you can come to meat, according to dear Fredrik :-) This weekend we had Salmon cutlets both Friday and Sunday, Fredrik took care of the fish and I took care of the pasta. Friday I made Parmesan Risoni and Sunday I just took some plain Penne with Olive Oil and a lot of grated Parmesan. Pasta really goes well with Salmon, but next time I’ll make Risoni I’ll add fried onion and paprika, and also more spices.

Fresh Salmon Cutlets with Parmesan Risoni

2 fresh Salmon cutlets

Risoni (2 deciliter/20 cl/1 cup )
Crème Fraiche or Sour Cream (1.5 deciliter/15 cl/0.6 cup)
grated Parmesan (1.5 deciliter/15 cl/0.6 cup )
Chive (2 tbsp)

Cook the Risoni according to the instructions on the parcel. Drain the Risoni when ready and then put it back in the pan. Mix the Risoni with Crème Fraiche, Parmesan, Chive, salt and pepper.
Fry the Salmon cutlets in butter, for about 3.5 minutes on each side.


The Wine God

Wednesday, January 12th, 2005

In Gothenburg there’s a very cosy and nice Italian restaurant called Toscana. We use to go there rather often, sometimes for dinner and sometimes just for a glass of red wine (they import really tasty wine). The owner, Francesco, is very nice, kind and very Italian :-) He doesn’t speek Swedish, only English and Italian, and he gladly talks with everyone. His adorable baby daughter is often seen at the restaurant, taken cared of by Francesco’s cute mother (who does most of the delicious desserts at Toscana), by Francesco himself at the same time as he pours up some wine at the bar counter or by Francesco’s wife.
As we are frequent guests (unfortunately we havn’t been there for a long time now), we were invited to Francesco’s birthday and a late opening dinner of the restaurant last summer. It was a lovely evening with wonderful food and a mixture of different people. And the Tiramisú made by Francesco’s mother was absolutely amazing! There was a nice intimate atmosphere that evening (as always when we’re there) and we willingly sang the Italian birthday song (tanti auguri a te! tanti auguri a te!).

There’s a weird painting at Toscana, I think that it’s supposed to be a cow and there are horns on the painting. Anyway, we call the painting the Wine God and it’s absolutely compulsory to toast to the Wine Good when we are there. Sometimes when we’re at home or somewhere else drinking wine we try to remember the Wine God and toast to him in the approximate direction. That can be tricky when we’re abroad, but I hope that we toasted to the right direction when we were on the Maldives, or else the Wine God would be really angry :-) Of course dear Francesco doesn’t know about our toasting and crazy ideas, he surely loves his painting and doesn’t have a clue about the Wine God.

When at Toscana, we often order Penne Fattorini which is a pasta with a hot tasty tomato sauce served with fresh ground pepper and a lot of parmesan. To that you get a delicious focaccia that I love to in the sauce. Yummy!

My own Penne Fattorini

Here’s my own recipe for Penne Fattorini, not so good as at Toscana but not so bad either:

Penne Fattorini

500 g crushed tomatoes (from can or box)
1 big onion
2 garlic cloves
a lot of ground pepper
some cayenne pepper
a pinch of sugar
1 stock cube (vegetable)
Olive oil
250 g Penne

(serves 2)

Chop the onion and the garlic cloves, and fry in olive oil for a couple of minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and let it simmer under a lid for 25 minutes. Don’t forget to add a lot of pepper, it should be really hot and nice!
Cook the pasta al dente, and then mix the pasta with the sauce. Serve with a lot of parmesan cheese and more ground pepper.

The Return Of The Bread Machine

Tuesday, January 11th, 2005
I noticed yesterday that we were out of bread and I immediately came to think about the old bread machine under the side table in the kitchen that’s gathering moss. My mother got it during the beginning of the 90-ties, and when I started at the university and moved from home she gave it to me. I actually baked bread with it several times a week when I was a student, but I havn’t used it at all during the latest 4 years. Anyway, yesterday was an excellent day to re-introduce the machine. As I’ve lost all of my invented bread machine recipes I had to do it by heart and the bread turned out rather well, but next time I’ll modify the recipe as it was just a little bit too compact. The problem with machine baked bread is that it often doesn’t look very nice and I don’t know what to do about it. I guess the best thing is to bake bread in the oven instead :-)

Machine Baked Walnut Bread

4 deciliters (~1,7 cups) flour
3 deciliters (~1,2 cups) graham flour
3,5 deciliters (1,5 cups) water
1 deciliters (~0,4 cups) chopped walnuts
1 tsp dry yeast
0,7 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil

Put all ingredients in the bread machine and switch it on. Then do something else until the bread is done and it’s time for a freshly baked sandwich with butter and some nice cheese.

Delicious Polish pancakes

Monday, January 10th, 2005

Nalesniki z serem

Yesterday I visited my mother and she made me some delicious sweet Polish pancakes with quark-curd, Nalesniki z serem. The equivalent French name is much fancier, Crêpes au fromage blanc. But it really doesn’t matter as it tastes delicous anyway :-) It’s one of my favourite dishes and it reminds me of my childhood.


Quark-curd is frequently used in the Polish kitchen and my boyfriend thinks that it’s the main ingredient in all Polish dishes :-) But of course that isn’t true, it just happens to be the main ingredient in my family’s favourite dishes: Sernik (cheesecake), Nalesniki z serem (pancakes with quark) and Ruskie pierogi (dough wrap filled with quark-curd and potatoes, see the photo below).

Ruskie Pierogi

I don’t have any exact recipe for the pancakes as I do them by heart. If someone wants an exact recipe please write me and I’ll do one batch of pancakes and make sure to write down the exact amount of all ingredients :-)

    Nalesniki z serem
    1 egg
    1 decilitre of flour
    2 decilitres of milk
    a pinch of sugar

    quark-curd filling:
    250 quark-curd (Swedes can use a package of “Kesella Gourmet”)
    1 egg yolk
    vanilla sugar
    raisins (my mother always marinate them in rum for a couple of hours)

    Make the filling by blending all ingredients. Make the pancake dough, fry the pancakes and set aside. Divide the filling between the pancakes, then fold every pancake in the middle and then fold them in the middle again. Sprinkle icing sugar over the pancakes and serve. Yummy!