Thursday, January 30, 2014

Haloumi-Veggie Burgers

These burgers are adapted from a Gordon Ramsay recipe. He adds loads of different fresh green herbs, but I just used what was in the house....which happened to be a block of haloumi cheese! 
It had been laying in the fridge for two months I think. 
So it was a perfect opportunity to give it a try.

for two burgers, I grated :
- haloumi cheese (appromimately 100 grams)
- zucchini (same amount, by volume)
- carrot (same amount, by volume)

It's important to use the same (course) grater on all three ingredients!
The grated carrot and zucchini go into a colander. Sprinkle them with salt and give it some time (5-10 minutes).

In the mean time, cut:
- 1 or 2 spring onions
- half a red pepper
-a piece of ginger

The red pepper and ginger go into a little bowl, sprinkle them with a bit of salt and sugar, then add rice wine vinegar and a bit of olive oil...give it a stir.

Now it's time to squeeze every last drop of liquid out of the carrot and zucchini...use both of your hands and make sure it's as dry as it can be, otherwise the burgers will fall apart.

When you're done, add the veggies to the grated haloumi, give it a quick stir, 

then add:
- 1 whisked egg
- about 3 tablespoons of breadcrumbs

Mix this up well and shape it into 2 burger patties.
Put it in your fridge for half an hour, so the patties get a little bit firmer before baking.

After that, drizzle some oil in a pan, gently add the patties and bake them on medium heat until both sides are a nice golden brown.

After plating them, scoop some of the red pepper and ginger out of the bowl (not the liquid) and lay it on top of the burgers for an extra kick.

Eat it with a nice green salad, 
or with couscous and grilled vegetables like I did.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Gnocchi in Tomatosauce…with Cheeeeese

Yes, yes, you should make the gnocchi yourself…it's quick and it's easy and it's SO much better 
than store bought gnocchi!

But I cannot be bothered today, so:

-          gnocchi di patate (200 grams per person)
-          tomato sauce with basilicum (or add fresh basilicum leaves)
-          diced onion
-          mozzarella
-          grana padano
-          bouillon cube
-          thyme
-          salt
-          pepper
-          oil

Cook the gnocchi in water with a bouillon cube or salt as per the instructions on the package.
Add oil to the pan and add the gnocchi when they're done, stir and let them brown a little….
when they look good, bake the onions on medium heat for a couple of minutes.

Then add some tomato sauce… it should be a generous amount, but you do not want your gnocchi to swim in the sauce. Add a liberal amount of pepper and salt to taste. Also other herbs like fresh basilicum or thyme could be added at this point, just taste it and make it how you want.

When it's all good to go, scoop the gnocchi in tomatosauce into an oven-safe bowl. Almost cover the surface with a couple of mozzarella slices and grate some grana  padano over the dish before sliding the whole thing into the oven
for 10 to 15 minutes at 200 C (or 400 F) 

(keep an eye on it; the whole dish is done, so you can pull the bowl from the oven when the cheese is looking good!)

Curried Noodle Soup

-          1 red onion, roughly diced
-          ½ red pepper
-          1 clove of garlic
-          ½ to 1 tablespoon of freshly grated ginger
-          1 tablespoon of red curry paste
-          1 bouillon cube
-          400 mL water
-          50 mL coconutmilk
-          1 red bell pepper
-          1 to 3 scallions
-          Piece of carrot
-          Egg noodles
-          1 tablespoon of olive oil

Bake the onion in the olive oil until translucent (4 minutes), then add the red pepper, garlic and ginger. Half a minute after that, add the red curry paste and give it a good stir, warm it up so you can smell it well. Then add the coconutmilk, the bouillon cube and the water. Let it all simmer for a while (10 minutes) before you add the egg noodles and boil them as instructed on the package.

In the mean time, slice the carrot and bell pepper in thin strips and and thinly slice the scallions.

Fill a bowl with the soup and arrange the fresh vegetables in the bowl

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Bell Pepper Quesadilla

If you don't feel like cooking, 
this easy vegetarian quesadilla recipe might come in handy.

-          2 large tortilla wraps
-          grated cheddar cheese

-          1 red bell pepper
-          1/2 green bell pepper
-          1/2 yellow bell pepper
-          2 red onions
-          3 tablespoons of olive oil

-          1 teaspoon of corn starch
-          1 teaspoon of chilipowder
-          1 teaspoon of paprika powder
-          ½ teaspoon of oregano
-          ½ teaspoon of black pepper
-          ½ teaspoon of salt

Preheat the oven to 400F. Cut the bell peppers and onions in strips and half rings. Place them in a large caserole dish. Mix up al the herbs and spices well and sprinkle the mixture over the vegetables. Add the olive oil and mix it all with your hands so everything is coated with the oil and spice mixture.

Place the casserole dish in the oven for 30 minutes (give the vegetables a stir half way through).

When the bell peppers and onions are done, heat a pan on the stove. Place a tortilla wrap in it, add some grated cheddar cheese on one half of the wrap, then some of the pepper/onion mixture and finally another layer of cheddar cheese. Fold the tortilla wrap in half and bake both sides on medium heat until the cheese has melted.

If you have more time, this can be upgraded by adding/making one or all of the following:

home made tortilla wraps
sour creme
spring onions
pico de gallo

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Spicy Meatballs

These aren’t extremely spicy (altough you can add more spice to your liking, of course), but they’re really nice and can serve as a standalone snack or a part of your dinner.

- 500 grams of ground beef
- 1 teaspoon djinten (cumin powder)
- 2 teaspoons ketoembar (coriander powder)
- 1 teaspoon ginger powder
- 1 teaspoon kurkuma (turmeric powder)
- 1 tablespoon ketjap manis (or sweet soy sauce)
- 2 teaspoons sambal (or pepper paste)
- a piece of fresh grated ginger
- Pepper
- Salt
- 1 egg
- 5 tablespoons breadcrumbs

Knead the ingredients well (the longer, the better),
And roll the small meatballs 

Now, melt 100 grams of butter and about 3 tablespoons of oil in a pan and bake the meatballs in that untill they’re evenly browned.

The large amount of butter makes sure they color nicely and they don’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
When the meatballs are nice and brown, add a small amount of port (or wine, or water)  to the pan and let them simmer a bit longer with the lid on the pan.

Now the meatballs can be served, either as a snack (with a dipping sauce), or for dinner like I did this time;

I had them with white rice, green beans (baked with sambal and coconut), satay sauce and fried onions.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Champignon XXL Burger

I used the mature version of the common 
white mushroom, but this recipe can be made with 
a portobello mushroom (the mature version of the chestnut mushroom) 
just as well.

Mushroom marinade
-1 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
-1 tablespoon of soy sauce
-1 tablespoon of olive oil
-1 teaspoon of cajun seasoning

Marinate the mushroom caps for about half an hour,
Then bake it in a pan, preferably a grilling pan. Using additional oil is not necessary, as there is oil in the marinade already.

Finally, build your burger the way you would do it with a ‘normal’ burger.

I used a slice of cheddar, some red onion and a slice of tomato….oh, and a nice layer of chipotle mayo ;-)

Red cabbage salad with a ginger-tahini dressing

A very easy salad, with a super tasty dressing. 
Also easy to make ahead, or to make a larger batch of for a few days.

Ginger-Tahini Dressing:

-4 tablespoons of olive oil
-4 tablespoons of (a light colored) vinegar
-1 tablespoon of soy sauce
-1 tablespoon of honey
-1 tablespoon of tahini
- 1/2 tablespoon of freshly grated ginger

Stick all the ingredients in a small container with a lid, so you can give it a good shake to prepare the dressing.
If this makes a larger amount of dressing than you need (and it probably will), remember that it keeps really well in the fridge (for at least a week).

Red Cabbage Salad:

-red cabbage

Cut thin strips of the red cabbage and grate the carrot (the amounts are up to you), and mix them in a bowl with some finely chopped scallions.

Mix in the Ginger-Tahini dressing, and plate the salad.

Optional: scatter some nuts (for example: peanuts or coarsely chopped walnuts) on top. 

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Pork Belly Buns

Never made these before and today i'm going to try and make a quick version,
not completely sure if that's a great idea, but let's see!
I've encountered way too many delicious pictures of pork belly buns on the internet lately,
so when I spotted the buns in the fridge of my local ethnic store, I just had to try.

Bought a couple of slices of pork belly (that's how they mainly sell pork belly over here, also called "speklapjes") and cut them in quarters

Baked them slowly on low/medium heat in tiny bit of oil (to get them started),
until the largest part of the fat melted away.
this will take about 20 minutes, and you want to turn up the heat and crisp them up a little at the end.

at that point, most of the fat was tossed and the meat was set aside.
in the little fat that was left, I heated a mixture of the following ingredients:

- 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon of fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons of dry sherry
- 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar
-chopped ginger (to taste)
- thin rings of red spanish pepper (to taste)

after bringing it to a boil, the meat was added back in and the heat
turned back down to low/medium heat.
I let it simmer for a while; about 20-30 minutes.

next up was steaming the buns I bought from the store
(instructions are on the package)
and preparing the rest, in this case:

- slices of cucumber
- shaved carrot slices
- a tiny bit of hoisin sauce for every bun

et voila:

Curried Hummus

Kurkuma and currypowder can totally transform the average hummus recipe.
And just like 'normal' hummus, it can be made in 5 minutes
with the help of a (small) food processor.

- 1 small can of chickpeas
-1/5 teaspoon of (hot) currypowder
- 1/2 teaspoon kurkuma (turmeric)
- 1/5 teaspoon djinten (cuminpowder)
- half a spanish pepper
- 1/4 clove of garlic
- 1 tablespoon of tahini
- bit of lemonjuice
- salt
- pepper
- olive oil
- a bit of water

chop the chickpeas in the foodprocessor, add everything else and
and process until well blended.
In the end, slowly add some water and oil until you reach the right consistancy.
Taste and adjust if necessary

In the picture, a nice Tuscan olive oil and a sprinkle of sumac was added to the hummus,
as well as breadsticks, carrotsticks and three colors of bell pepper.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Chicken Skewers

for a quick midnight snack, I marinated 2,5 grams of chicken strips with
1 tablespoon of oil
1/4 teaspoon kurkuma
1/8 teaspoon laos
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon hot curry

After about a half hour, I skewered the chicken and that made a one person portion
or a two person portion if you're not hungry
(but why make a midnight snack when you're not hungry, right?)
Anyway, this recipe can easily be scaled up as well as adjusted to your spice cabinet.

I used a contact grill to prepare them, but any grill pan or 
bbq or whatever will do of course

The final touch is some chili sauce from a bottle and
a healthy appetite

bon appetite

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Tagliatelle with salmon, oyster mushrooms and salicornia

made by the BF, hence no recipe 
(but add cream, salt and pepper to the items 
mentioned above and it'll be pretty close)

Not a bad start for a food blog, I think.