Pizza, who doesn´t like that, not many people say no to a slice! Most of the time I make the dough for the pizza myself. Sometimes I just want to have it easy, especially during hot and busy summer days. This time I used the same dough again as with the flammkuchen from a while ago. This time I topped it with my pizza favourites. For this size of pizza used the following:
1 package of ready to use pizzadough
1 can of chopped tomatoes
some green asparagus, sliced lenghtwise
1 courgette/zucchini, sliced lengthwise
2 red onions, in rings
1 red bellpepper, in rings
grated gouda cheese
herbs, garlic, salt and pepper to your liking
For the baking temperature and times please look at the packaging of your pizzadough.
For extra flavour to your pizza you can grill the vegetables first. Lightly oil a grill pan and grill the asparagus (cut lengthwise in half) until grill stripes have been made. Cut the courgette lengthwise also and use a cheeseslicer to slice ribbons of the courgette. Grill them until brown grill stripes have been formed. Set aside until you need them.
Put the content of the tin of tomatoes in a bow. Add garlic, freshly pressed, powdered or flakes, and stir. Add dried italian style herbs to this mixture or use fresh basil and thyme, all to your own taste. If you like to use some pepper and salt add to your own liking.
Spread this mixture over the unrolled dough. (you might use just 2/3 of the content of the can.
Evenly spread the vegetables over the tomatosauce. At this stage I bake the pizza for 10 minutes to let any extra moisture evaporate. Take the pizza out of the oven an sprinkle the grated cheese on top. Bake for another 10 minutes until golden and bubbling.
Extra topping suggestions: sliced mushroom, sliced tomato, for meat lovers ham in cubes, slices of salami or small strips of bacon.
Note: each oven is different. Adjust the cooking times according to your oven. I prefer to be on the safe side and always set the kitchen timer minutes less and add minutes to it if desired. This pizza was enough for the three of us. You might want to have a salad on the side. For two adults with a huge appetite this one might do too! Any leftovers are great for the lunchbox the next day.
When the weather is hot the dinner can be easy and cold. Although the temptation sometimes can be to skip dinner at all and go for a sandwich, we all need our energy to get through the day. And why not make that energy a yummy one! I found this recipe at mariavestergaard.dk/salat-med-kartofler-asparges-og-pinjekerner/, Didn't have to think twice to make it. Her recipes are always full of flavour and fresh ingredients. First the translation in Dutch was up and now in English. Sometimes time is short on my part, I would recommend Google translate for when I'm late with a correct translation. So here we go:
350 grams of small baby potatoes, cooked in their skin and cooled
a handful of rucola
1 tablespoon of oliveoil
juice of a quarter lemon
clove of garlic
5 green asparagus
1 tablespoon of dill
half a teaspoon of salt
half a red onion
1 ripe avocado
a large chunck of feta cheese
a small hand of pine nuts
This is how:
Cook the potatoes in their skin and let them cool down completely. To speeden up the process, rinse with cold water and put in the fridge until you use them.
Cut the potatoes in half en mix them, in a large salad bowl, with the rucola, dill, lemonjuice, olive oil and salt.
Cut the asparagus lengthwise and after in smaller bitesize pieces. (Maria uses them raw, I prefer to have them cooked a bit. I put them in a bowl and cover with boiling water and leave for about 5-6 minutes then rinse with cold water, proceed as in recipe after this)
Cut the onion and garlic into small pieces and mix with the potatoes and rucola together with the asparagus.
Cut the avocado in half, remove the stone and cut up the avocado in larger pieces.
Roast the pine nuts in a dry skillet until golden brown, leave to cool a bit and sprinkle over the salad.
Crumble the feta ost and put on top the salad.
Add some some dill to your liking.
Summer is here!
A good reason to make something very simple and delicious for dinner. I made this yummy flammkuchen. That is a pizza but then different. Maybe you can compare it to a pizza bianca. The original flammkuchen comes from the Alsace area in Germany/France. In France it is known under the name tarte flambée. I found a roll of fresh pizza dough in the fridge, it really needed to be used and this is the result. It is very easy, hardly any skills required, just put it all together, bake and enjoy. We had it with a nice salad on the side. So good when the weather is warm and all are in need of a good plate of food at dinner.
Serves 3 for dinner or 4-5 for lunch.
This is what you need:
1 roll of fresh pizza dough (enough to cover one baking sheet)
1 tub of crème fraiche
Freshly grated nutmeg
Red onion (about 5-7 depending on the size)
Bacon in small strips
(Chestnut mushrooms, 400-500 grams, for the vegetarian version)
½ a teaspoon of smoked paprika powder
Pepper and salt to taste
Some oil/butter to fry the mushrooms in
Pre-heat the oven to 230 with the baking sheet already in the oven.
Unroll the pizza dough (most of the times it is rolled up with baking parchment, if not use a sheet of baking parchment) and put it on the kitchen top or table.
Spread out evenly 2-3 tablespoons of crème fraiche
Cut the onions into rings and loosen. Cover the crème fraiche with the onion rings.
Grate the nutmeg over the onions, sprinkle some salt and pepper to taste.
When vegetarian, clean the mushrooms, and cut them into quarters. Heat up a frying pan and add some oil or butter. When the butter/oil is heated add the mushrooms and fry until golden. I added half a teaspoon of smoked paprika powder. That gives some spiciness and a smoked flavor to the mushrooms that is somewhat like when using just bacon. When done, leave to cool and when cool spread out over the kuchen. Or do as I did, put in on one half of the kuchen and on the other half add the bacon strips.
Transport over to the heated baking sheet and bake in the middle of the oven for about 17-20 minutes or until golden and crisps.
For some texture and color I added some rucola on top of the kuchen. This is not only delicious but also pleasing to the eye.
Serve with a salad of assorted salad leaves, tomato, cucumber, feta cheese, toasted nuts and a nice dressing and enjoy!
This picture is taken with the use of the photostyling background Blue Table. (bought at Photo Styling Background. Want to know more? Please read the blogpost below.
Often wondered how those beautiful food pictures are made? Look no further. Use the wonderful backgrounds by Susy Grundahl. They are so versatile. Can be used for flat lay or as backgrounds for any subject you want, even for portrait photography. You can use this link to acces the website: photostylingbackground.com/?aff=6 and use the code 30% to get your 30% discount runs until 31st of May 2019. (proud affiliate partner of Photostyling background) The link I shared is also working after the special offer period. That is after the 31st of May. The 30% however is not applicable.
Here you see a salad on my 4 photostyling backgrounds
Strange name for a really good addition to your dinner. In Denmark a frikadelle is a meatball that is kind of like a staple food. You can even buy them frozen at the supermarket. Luckily, for us vegetarians, habits change and vegetarian food becomes more and more popular. All due to more awareness of the impact of meat consumption and for more variation in the diet.
These quinoa balls, can be eaten with a nice salad for dinner or, the next day, as an extra in the lunch box.
The recipe is as follows:
For 4 persons
Makes 16 small or 8 bigger portions
150 gram light colored quinoa
100 gram cauliflower
100 grams of salad cheese cubes (in brine Arla) in crumbs
1 dl oats
1 dl parsley, coarsely cut
1 clove of garlic, pressed
½ teaspoon salt (try if it is to your taste)
Freshly milled pepper
Butter or oil for baking
Cook the quinoa following the instructions on the packet. Drain any excess water. Leave to cool.
Grate the cauliflower or use a food processor to grind them to rice like kernels.
Stir the cooled down quinoa, the cauliflower rice, the salad cheese crumbs and the rest of the ingredients until combined. Cover and leave to cool in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.
Form 16 or 8 quinoadeller. Start with making balls and flatten them. Heat a skillet, add the butter or the oil on medium heat and bake the quinoadeller in appr. 8 minutes until golden brown. Serve with a salad consisting of an assortment of colored salad leaves, orange slices, salad cheese cubes, toasted walnut and a dressing of your choice.
Sometimes you have that craving of something that can go with your coffee or tea. It doesn’t need to be much, just a light snack to satisfy your tastebuds. I really “needed” something like that. It took a bit of research and some fantasy to come up with this yummy small tartelette. Can be made in minutes and it’s gone in seconds. It isn’t exactly a recipe, just a way of putting things together that create something yummy.
1 square of frozen puff pastry (ca 20x20 cm)
A heaped tablespoon of cottage cheese
A handful of blueberries or other small soft fruit
Pre heat the oven at 200 degrees centigrade
Defrost the puff pastry and cut out a circle nearly as big as the square of pastry
Put it on a baking sheet that is covered with baking parchment.
Spread out the cottage cheese evenly, leaving the edges free.
Put the berries in the middle of the cottage cheese and give it a generous dusting with the icing sugar
Bake for about 15 minutes in the middle of the oven.
Serve lukewarm, or cold. Preferably the same day as it will lose its crispness otherwise.
Tip: Dust with more icing sugar just before serving.
Some grated lemon peel is also a nice fresh addition to the tartelette.
Chocolate Mousse with a secret ingredient:
That's just what it is. A secret ingredient. I didn't tell the family what they were getting as a dessert. Just let them savour the wonderful silky texture and the chocolate taste of it. No questions asked, just saying that they really really enjoyed this dessert. So what's not to like. It is made with Aquafaba. The liquid that you usually drain of the chickpeas when you use them for a dish. This time you keep it and whisk it into soft peaks that look just like peaks of eggwhites. You can both use milkchocolate for a somewhat sweeter version, mind the amound of sugar you add to it all of dark chocolate of at least 70% cocoa solids. Then it is a vegan dessert.
So here we go!
150 grams of 70% cocoa dark chocolate
120 grams of aquafaba (the liquid from 1 can 400 gram chickpeas)
few drops of lemon juice (juice from a bottle is ok)
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon sugar
What are you going to do?
1. Melt the chocolate over a water bath of use the microwave.
2. Whisk the aquafaba with a few drops of lemon juice with a hand or stand mixer. This can take up to 10 minutes. Mix the sugar and vanilla sugar. Add the sugar and vanilla sugar little by little, while you continue to whisk the aquafaba into soft peaks.
3. Pour in the melted chocolate and mix with a spatula of spoon. Divide over 4-6 cups/bowls. Put in the fridge and let it cool for at least 2 hours
4. Serve with fresh fruit.
tips: please make sure your whisk and bowl are free from any grease. Exactly as you would do when whisking eggwhites into soft peaks.
Blood orange upside down cake
Preheat oven 175 degrees Celsius and coat a 23 cm cake pan with nonstick cooking spray. Or use baking parchment to line the pan.
Evenly scatter the cane sugar over the bottom of the cake pan and place the orange slices on top.
In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, melted butter, orange zest and orange juice.
Pour the wet ingredients in with the dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula until nearly combined. Some dry spots OK as you do not want to overmix the batter.
Pour the batter over the oranges and bake for approximately 35 minutes, or until the sides start pulling away from the pan and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Transfer make to a wire rack to cook for 5 minutes before inverting over a large plate and gently releasing from the pan.
original recipe by Froeken Kraesen, Linn Grubstrom
100 gr butter
knife tip with salt
knife tip with vanillasugar
4 table spoons with cocoa powder, no sugar or additives
2,5 dl flour
3 dl sugar
Pre heat the oven at 200 degrees celsius
Melt the butter
Whisk eggs and sugar until light yellow and fluffy
Mix in the melted butter
Mix the dry ingredients, flour, sugar and vanilla sugar together add to butter egg mixture
Line a baking mould (21-25 cm diameter) with baking parchment or butter the mould
Add the batter
Bake for 18-20 minutes at 200 degrees celsius
Extra: peanut butter swirl
125 grams of peanutbutter
2 table spoons of melted butter
40 grams of powdered sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla sugar
Melt the butter, stir in all the ingredients. Drop spoonfuls fo the mixture on top of the batter then swirl with a knife or the back of a wooden spoon.
N.B. This is rather a large amount of mixture. Any left can be easily stored in an airtight container in the fridge for a considerable amount of time.
Tip: Add part of the batter to the mould, add spoonfuls of the mixture and top of with rest of the batter, then bake.
Kiksekage (biscuit cake)
300 grams of dark chocolate
3 dl of whipping cream (unwhipped)
100 grams of icing sugar
50 grams of butter
225 grams of biscuits
How it's done:
Line a cake loaf tin with baking parchment.
Break the chocolate in small pieces and add to a bowl. Bring the whipping cream and icing sugar to the boil in a pan on the stove wile stirring.
Gently add the hot cream mixture to the chocolate and stir until shiny and elastic. Let cool for a while. Add the butter in small cubes to the mixture and stir very well until each cube has been absorbed. Let cool in the fridge for 15 minutes.
Take the lined loaf tin and add a layer of chocolate mixture. Top with a layer of biscuits, add chocolate mixture, biscuits etc. End with a layer of chocolate mixture. Cover with clingfilm and put in the refrigerator for a night. For serving carefully cut in slices.
Kladdkaka with white chocolate and fruit
Sometimes you need just something easy and delicious. This cake ticks all the boxes. Simple ingredients, fruit can be both frozen or fresh and I only use one pan to prepare the batter.
Kladdkaka is a cake that needs to be a bit soft inside. Kladd meaning mud in Swedish where this type of cake originates. So, ready for some baking? Here we go!
200 gr butter
180 gr white chocolate
180 gr sugar
2 teaspoons of vanilla sugar
250 gr flour
300 gr of fruit of choice
Pre heat the oven at 180 degrees Celsius. Hot air oven minus 20%.
Melt the butter and sugar in a pan over medium heat. Take care in not overheating the butter. Let cool slightly.
Mix in the sugar until nearly dissolved. Add the eggs, add the next one after the first one has been incorporated. Add the vanilla sugar and mix. Add the flour and mix again.
Use a springform of appr. 23 cm diameter. Line with baking parchment and grease if you want to. Add the batter and put the fruit on the top of the batter.
Bake for 25 minutes or longer. Use a skewer to test, there still needs to be a bit of batter on the skewer. I usually add 5 mins extra and test again. Experience has learned that 35 minutes leads to a more satisfactory result.
Let cool, and dust with a bit of confectioners sugar. Serve with whipped cream or crème fraiche.
It's my website's first birthday this month
And a party without a cake is no party right?! So I made this deliciously sweet cake with elderflower and lemon curd. I used two 17 cm baking tins but you can easily use one 24/26cm tin and slice the cake so you have two layers. It is rather sweet but so delicious with the tangy lemon coming through. I only used the elderflower for decoration and took it off when slicing it before serving. It serves 8-10people, depending on how "hungry" you are. So here it is:
For the cake
175g (6 oz) butter
175g (6 oz) caster sugar
175g (6 oz) self-raising flour
½ level teaspoon baking powder
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon elderflower cordial
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
For the syrup
Juice of 1 lemon, strained
1 tablespoon elderflower cordial
55g (2 oz) caster sugar
For the filling
115g (4 oz) icing sugar
40g (1 ½ oz) butter
1-2 teaspoons elderflower cordial
3-4 tablespoons lemon curd
55g (2 oz) icing sugar for glace icing OR just some for dusting
1. Cream the sugar and butter together until smooth – either in a mixer or by hand. Mix the eggs and the cordial together and then add a little bit at a time until combined. Stir through the lemon zest and then add the flour and baking powder, mixing until combined.
2. Spoon the mixture into 2 greased and base lined 20cm cake tins. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C, 160°C fan oven, Gas 4 for around 30 minutes or until cooked, and then turn out on to a wire tray.
3. Then put the lemon juice, elderflower, and sugar in a saucepan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved. Whilst cake is still warm, make a few deep holes with a skewer and pour the syrup mixture over the cake so that it soaks into the cake.
4. Place the icing sugar, butter and elderflower in a bowl and beat well until smooth. Spread the base cake half with 1/3 of the icing and 1/3 lemon curd, and then top with the second cake. You can decorate with a thin glace icing made with the icing sugar and a little lemon juice and drizzle over the top of the cake, or you could just dust it with icing sugar instead.
Danish comfort, a great export product
What is this hygge, and what attracts us to this phenomenon. We know the word cosy (in English, and gezellig and gezelligheid in Dutch). Or is it the simplicity, of being attracted to all things Scandinavian.
The word hygge is a hype at the moment and one that hopefully is there to stay. What better then to spend some time with the ones near to us in comfortable surroundings. Put on your hygge socks and enjoy!
Hygge is in fact being studied, and lots of books are written on the subject. I've got two of them at home. One in English by Signe Johansen called How to hygge (the secrets of Nordic Living) and one by Meik Wiking available in many languages including English and Dutch: Hygge, the art of living. On a grey November day like today there is nothing better then to relax and read some chapters of these books. Just trying to understand some of the essences of this special export product of the Nordic countries.
Winters in Scandinavia are much longer then the ones in Holland. It gets light late and dark early during winter time. Every reason to make the time spend indoors as comfortable as possible. So candles are being lighted, something delicious being baked and a cosy atmosphere created. It sure isn't that it are all grand gestures. It's all in the detail, and those details matter a lot. The book by Meik Wiking has a whole chapter on this subject.
The five aspects of hygge: 1. the taste of hygge, could be described as the taste of comfortfood, known flavours to be enjoyed time and time again. 2. the sound of hygge, the sound of an open fire. As we don't have one, the absence of harsh noises count too. Natural sounds that are evocing a feeling of security inside the home. 3. the smell of hygge, the smells that take you back to into history, very personal, the smells that make you feel at home. 4. the feel of hygge, small things you can touch. Organic, natural, small details are giving a comfortable feeling. 5. to see hygge, looking at slow moving objects/items. Snowflakes that are falling, the flames of an open fire. No harsh colours and little and pleasant lightning.
For me this results in lighting the candles, a comfortable indoors climate, a cosy spot on the sofa, a cup of tea and maybe even some homebaked goodies to go with my tea. Just not needing to do too much. Well, you can't just have enough of the above to enjoy and not think too much. That is just it for me!
Make your day a hyggelig one!
Source: Meik Wiking, Hygge, the art of Danish living. The Happiness Research Institute, Copenhagen. Available in bookstores and online. This is a book I highly recommend.
It’s yellow and brown
During the holiday period I often find that bananas tend to ripe fast. The change of routine, not taken to school and the higher temperatures are the cause of that. Luckily I’ve got a teenage daughter that wanted to do something. Well those bananas really were inviting to make this delicious slices. I’ve got lots of recipes. In books, saved from magazines, from the internet, some are never used some once and some have become a family favorite. These slices really are one of the favorites. Original recipe by Delia Smith, altered through the years by us. With the weather conditions not being on the sunny side a lot, this is a nice recipe to make and, not less important, very nice to eat! That is what I would call hygge, rain outside, inside drinking tea and eating these delicous slices!
Banana chocolate chip slices, makes 12
2 large, very ripe bananas, peeled and roughly chopped into 1 cm pieces
75 gr dark chocolate chips or dark chocolate chopped small
250 gr self-raising flour
150 gr cold butter, cut into small cubes
150 gr golden caster sugar
Cake tin 15x25 cm (just about) lined with baking parchment.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
First of all, sift the flour into a large mixing bowl. Then add the butter and rub it into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. (can be done in a food processor, if you like). Next, stir in the sugar, chopped bananas and the chocolate. This will look like crumble mix.
Now press the mixture evenly into the lined baking tin and bake it on the middle shelf of the pre-heated oven for 35-40 minutes or until it is firm to touch in the centre and lightly golden.
Leave to cool in the tin. Keep the slices refrigerated.
July 24th, 2017
The smell of vacation
Washing up liquid
One of the things that you notice when you are on a holiday is the different smells. Wherever you are travelling to, even in your own country, the smell is different everywhere. I love it. My holiday smell isn’t the one of fries and suntan lotion. Glad it isn’t! My holiday smell is the one of the sea, sand, forest, and washing up liquid! Yes, no mistake, washing up liquid.
I found this out by accident when we left house too fast and forgot a lot of things. Some of it were washing up liquid, shampoo, shower gel and body lotion. Everyday items that are easily bought. So we bought the local products and they sure smelled good! No fancy products, just what was directly available. We took home with us what was left over. At a certain point we came to use those products at home. We were transported back to our previous holiday in one smell! It was so connected to our holiday home and surroundings. The feeling came back instantly. So we don’t need funny souvenirs, just washing up liquid.
Ever since that holiday we make it a challenge to find those products we really like or search for new ones. The smell of holiday so easily exported to your own home!
I can think of more items: cleaning liquid, toothpaste, hair gel/pomade, laundry powder, fabric softener etc. etc.
So regard the supermarket on your vacation as the ideal souvenir shop, you´ll be surprised!
July 19th 2017
[grandmothers apple pie]
When I posted a picture of this dessert on my Instagram account there were lots of request for the recipe. So I decided to add it as soon as possible to my blog. This recipe is typical Danish and very popular.
When we first visited Denmark we often saw it on the menu together with other pies. It could be ordered with your tea or coffee too. In Holland grandmothers apple pie is a totally different one. More like a proper pie baked in a baking pan. This is more like an apple sauce with crunchy toasted sugary breadcrumbs and unsweetened whipped cream.
To our surprise our friend in Denmark made this for dessert when we visited her one day. We were pleasantly surprised. A not so sweet delicious dessert. I went looking for a recipe when we were home and found this one. Although there are many varieties this one is very easy to make because all the ingredients are widely available. The trick to the crunchy breadcrumbs is to bake it slowly on a rather high heat and to keep stirring. That way the cane sugar and crumbs will caramelize and turn into a yummy crunch for your dessert!
Lets get cooking!
Ingredients for 4 persons:
0,5 dl water
750 gram apples of your choice, peeled, core removed and cut into pieces
1 tablespoon of cane sugar
½ of a vanilla bean, cut open and seeds used
75 grams of unsalted butter
150 grams of breadcrumbs
85 grams of cane sugar
0,5 liter of unsweetened whipped cream
Some red (currant) marmalade
How to make:
Put the water, vanilla seeds and the apple pieces in a pan. Cook over a low heat, with the lid on, for 10 minutes or until softened. Set aside to cool.
Melt the butter in a pan on a high heat, don’t let it go brown. Add the breadcrumbs and cane sugar and stir constantly until golden and crisp. Leave to cool on a baking sheet that has been placed on a baking tray. Stir every now and then so it will be crumbs.
In a large glass bowl or several small glasses/bowls put in the apple sauce and crunch in layers. End with a thick layer of the whipped cream. Additionally put a teaspoon of red marmalade on top.