Sunday, 18 September 2016

Bread and Tomato Salad

Don't know what to do with bread that's gone a bit old, dry and stale? Look no further. Here is a nice salad, that works particularly well in hot weather.
There is an Italian version of it, called Panzanella - but I wouldn't claim mine is particularly Mediterranean.

What you need

  • a few slices of bread
  • cherry tomatoes
  • cucumber
  • parmesan
  • pepper - and if you like - chilli
  • pepper, salt, sugar
  • 1 lemon
  • bacon
  • oil (olive or sunflower)


You can also add different flavours. E.g.
  • anchovies instead of bacon
  • capers
  • olives
  • basil leaves


  • mixing bowl
  • frying pan

How you do it

  • cut the bacon into little cubes and fry in the frying pan until golden brown. Put aside to let cool down.
  • cut the bread into little cubes. Put into mixing bowl
  • cut the cherry tomatoes into halves and add to the bread
  • cut the cucumber into little slices/cubes and put into the bowl
  • cut the pepper halfway, remove the seeds and cut into thin slices. Add to the mix
  • grate the parmesan and add to the mix
  • add the fried/cooled bacon


  • juice 1 lemon
  • add 1 teaspoon of sugar to the juice
  • add a bit of salt and pepper
  • add 3 tablespoons of oil 
  • mix well
Finally: pour the dressing over the bread/veggie in the bowl and mix.

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Baked Peppers with pesto tomatoes feta

What you need

  • 3-4 bell peppers
  • 500g cherry tomatoes
  • feta cheese
  • olives
  • pine nuts
  • parmesan cheese
  • garlic cloves (3-4)
  • fresh basil leaves - 1 - 2 bundles
  • salt, pepper, olive oil


  • mixing bowl
  • blender
  • baking form, e.g. a large quiche form

How you do it


  • ca 100g pine nuts into the blender
  • add salt, pepper
  • wash the basil leaves and add
  • grind parmesan cheese - ca 50g and add to it
  • add generous amount of olive oil
  • add 3-4 garlic cloves (well depending on how garlicky you like it to be). cut the cloves into two and add to the mix in the blender
Switch the blender on. If it gets stuck you may want to add more olive oil. Let it run for a few minutes until it is a smooth green paste. 
Put the pesto aside

Peppers and Filling

  • wash & cut the cherry tomatoes and add to mixing bowl
  • cut the feta cheese into little cubes and add to the tomatoes
  • if the olives are pitted add to the mix. Otherwise remove stones and cut into two
  • add ca 8 tablespoons of pesto to it and mix thoroughly
  • wash & cut the peppers in half. Make sure seeds and stalk are removed
  • put into baking tray with the cavity facing upwards
  • with a spoon add the tomato/feta/olive/pesto mix into the peppers
  • preheat the oven to 180C or 350F
  • sprinkle a little rock salt and olive oil (Nigel Slater also recommends a bit of red wine vinegar)
  • put into oven and let run for ca 30min

Saturday, 20 August 2016

French Yogurt Cake

What you need

  • 125-150g yoghurt
  • 2 large or 3 medium eggs
  • 1 lemon
  • 125-150g sugar
  • vanilla extract
  • 1-2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 250g plain flour
  • 100 - 125g vegetable oil (1/2 cup) or butter (but oil is better)
  • a pinch of salt
  • icing sugar (optional)
Optionally you may use a few berries, fruits, e.g. raspberries or strawberries. See below


  • mixing bowl
  • sieve
  • baking tray
  • whisker
  • zester
  • sieve for icing sugar

How you do it

Preheat the oven to 180C or 350F
  • measure and put 250 g of plain flour aside
  • in one bowl put the sugar in. Then use the zester to create lemon zest and mix with sugar
  • add the eggs, oil and yoghurt
  • whisk until creamy
  • add 1-2 spoons of baking powder
  • through a sieve add the 250g flour. 
  • finally - mix until smooth

  • prepare the baking tray, i.e. grease with butter and sprinkle some flour onto it
  • pour the flour/yoghurt mix into the tray
  • use a spoon to smooth and even it out
  • if you have any berries (e.g. raspberries), add them on top and press them into the dough slightly (so that they are half in, half out)
Finally put the tray into the oven and let it bake for 50-55min.
When finished, remove from oven and let cool down for another 20min or so before removing it from the baking casket.
Then sprinkle it with icing sugar if you wish

Sunday, 17 April 2016

Farro Fennel Salad

This recipe is from The Guardian:

What you need

  • farro 150mg
  • 1-2 fennel bulbs 
  • 1 red onion
  • cucumber
  • cherry tomatoes
  • halloumi cheese
  • flat leave parsley, a small bundle of fresh mint leaves, and some fresh oregano leaves
  • salt, pepper, sugar
  • sherry vinegar, olive oil
  • 1 litre of water


  • mixing bowl
  • salad bowl
  • skillet
  • sauce pan

How you do it

Marinade the onion

  • chop the onion and put in a small bowl
  • take a good tea spoon of sugar
  • pour 3 table spoons of sherry vinegar over it and mix.
  • let it rest and start preparing the rest

Prepare the Farro

  • put 1 litre of water on the boil and pour the 150g farro in it
  • let cook for 10-12 min
  • pour content in a sieve and rinse the farro
  • let cool down

Prepare the Halloumi

  • a table spoon of olive oil in the skillet and heat up
  • slice the halloumi into 5mm thick slices and put in the skillet
  • brown on both sides.
  • take of the cooker and put the grilled halloumi on the side to cool down

The rest

  • chop fennel bulbs
  • quarter the cherry tomatoes
  • cut the cucumber into little cubes
  • chop parsley, mint and oregano
  • cut the pomegranate and extract the seeds
Now all veggies into a salad bowl and season with a little salt and pepper.
Then pour the farro and halloumi over it.
Finally the onion/sherry mix.
Give it a good stir.

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Parmesan Bread Pudding With Broccoli & Bacon

This is a post from a magazine. I tried it and it is very nice comfort food. Easy to prepare.
Here is the link:

What you need

  • bread. You can use old bread - it soaks up the milk/egg mix better
  • 4 eggs
  • broccoli - medium to large head
  • small red/yellow pepper
  • garlic clove 
  • oil, salt, pepper
  • bacon or pancetta, sliced
  • milk (not semi skimmed/skimmed)
  • parmesan


  • skillet
  • baking form
  • bowl

How you do it

  • preheat the oven to ca 175 - 180 C (fan should be ca 170-175C)
  • wash and cut the broccoli into small chunks.
  • chop the garlic and wash/slice the peppers into thin stripes
  • put some olive oil in the skillet and heat up
  • add the garlic for ca 30 sec then add the sliced peppers for another 30 sec before adding the broccoli.
  • I also added 1 or 2 slices of the bacon to it. and if you like you can pour a little bit of white wine into it (a table spoon or so). 
  • cook for ca 5 min and then let cool down
  • chop the bread into little cubes
  • add milk and the 4 eggs into a bowl and season with pepper, salt. Then whisk 
  • grate the parmesan until you got ca 2 cups. Add one cup to the milk/egg mix. whisk again
Now we got everything ready - let's prepare the form

  • put a layer of chopped bread on the bottom of the form and add a bit of the broccoli, garlic, pepper mix.
  • then another layer of bread and veggies. Continue this way with the rest of veggies/bread
  • pour the milk/parmesan/egg mix over the filled form
  • place the bacon stripes over the top
  • sprinkle the rest of the grated parmesan over it
  • place into preheated oven and cook for 50-60min

Saturday, 19 March 2016


Roasted goose is a traditional German Christmas dish. I absolutely love roasted goose, particularly during the cold autumn and winter period.
Getting a goose can be a bit tricky at times. I have not yet seen one in any of the supermarkets - not even Waitrose. Meaning, you will probably have to source it from a local butcher. 
Preparing and roasting a goose is relatively easy. Roasting a goose is, however, time-consuming. Goose is very "muscly" poultry and it needs time to soften the meat. You should estimate 1 hour per kg!

What works with a roasted goose?

  • red cabbage (see one of my earlier blog posts)
  • bread dumplings (Semmelknoedel) 

What you need

  • goose: 4-6 kg. When you order one it isn't always possible to get a particular size. But geese typically are in the weight range between 3.5 - 6.5 kg.
  • salt, pepper, cinnamon 
  • garlic, 2-3 onions, mugwort, 2 carrots, 2 parsnips, 2 pears, 2 apples. Mugwort can be tricky to get - rosemary works as well
  • parsley
  • vegetable stock, water
  • gingerbread for the sauce
  • creme fraiche/sour cream for the sauce


  • baking tray
  • ideally a roasting rack - but not really necessary
  • ladle or large spoon to remove the fat
  • bowl for the fat. Ideally also a fat & gravy separator

How you do it


Filling the goose

  • chop apples, pears, 1 onion, 1 carrot, parsley and 1 parsnip
  • mix 3 teaspoons of salt with 1-2 tea spoons of cinnamon and 1 spoon pepper
  • rub the inside of the goose with the salt/cinnamon/pepper mix
  • stuff the goose with the fruits/vegetable/parsley mix
With a sharp knife cut a hole through the frontal skin near the opening. Then pull the leg

from the opposite site through the hole - as shown in the picture.

Finally, use salt, pepper and rub it into the outer skin


  • preheat the oven to 120 C (fan) 
  • in the baking tray place a carrot, parsnip, 1 onion and the mugwort/rosemary
  • if the butcher included the entrails of the goose, place them on the tray as well.
  • dissolve a 1-2 teaspoons of vegetable stock in a glass of water (ca 150ml) and pour into the tray.
  • DO NOT USE ANY OIL/FAT: the goose has loads of fat (which you will have to remove) so no need to add any to it
  • put the goose onto the roasting rack - or directly onto the tray and in the oven.
  • cook at 120 C for 1 hour. This will start the process of the goose loosing fat
After one hour remove the tray from the oven and increase the heat to 160C.
Add some salt and pepper to the outside of the goose and put the goose back into the oven.
In regular intervals:
  • pour some water over the goose
  • with the ladle/large spoon remove the fat from the tray and put in a bowl or gravy/fat separator. - There will be LOTS!
As mentioned before: roasting a goose takes time. Ca 1 hour per kilo. In order not to burn it the heat should be no higher than 160 C/170 C (fan oven). The first hour is at low heat of 120-130C (fan) to soften up the meat and start releasing the fat.


  • Chop an onion, use 1 teaspoon of oil and start frying in a sauce pan.
  • Fry the onion for 12-15 min while stirring. The onions should be golden brown.
  • Add a 1/2 - 1 tablespoon of flour and keep stirring.
  • Add the gravy from the baking tray and stir until sauce thickens
  • if you have a small piece of dry gingerbread - crumble it up and add to it.
  • you may want to add a small spoon of creme fraiche/sour cream

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Sweet Potatoes with Porcini Gravy

This is a copy from Nigel Slater's recipe on

But as usual with cooking I'd recommend a slight variation to it.

What you need

  • 1 onion
  • 1-2 table spoons of flour
  • 2 table spoons of olive oil
  • salt, pepper, thyme (best if fresh)
  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • package of porcini mushrooms
  • 400 ml water
  • 200 ml white wine (dry)
  • creme fraiche


  • Sauce pan
  • quiche form
  • bowl

How you do it


  1. put the dried mushrooms in a bowl and cover with white wine. 200ml should be enough
  2. let rest for at least 30min
  3. after 30min, put 400ml of water in a sauce pan and bring to the boil
  4. pour the dried mushrooms with the white wine into the sauce pan and cook for 5 min
  5. take sauce pan off the cooker and pour all of its content back into the bowl
  6. peal and chop the onion
  7. clean & dry the sauce pan and put 1 table spoon of olive oil in it
  8. heat until the oil is hot pour the chopped onions in it. 
  9. Add some salt & pepper.
  10. you need to cook the onions for 12-13 min. Stir while they're cooking.
  11. The onions should be golden brown.
  12. Then put the 1-2 table spoons of flour in the sauce pan. Stir for ca 3 min
  13. slowly pour the mushroom/water/gravy mix in it while stirring. Do this step by step - so that at each step the sauce has a chance to thicken.
  14. when you poured all of the mushroom/water/whine mix in - continue cooking and stirring for ca 5min.

Sweet Potatoes

  1. Put the oven on 200 C or gas mark 6
  2. peal the sweat potatoes and cut in 5mm chunks
  3. put the cut potato pieces in the form
  4. sprinkle salt, thyme, pepper and a bit of olive oil over them
  5. put in the pre-heated oven and let bake for ca 30min

Voila: get the potatoes out of the oven and place on a plate. Pour some of the gravy over it and a tea spoon of creme fraiche on the side.