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Oblande

21 Jun

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Oblande is a Serbian dessert consisting of layers of wafer and walnut filling. Thank you to Ankica for sharing her recipe with me. Here’s how what you will need and how to make it.

  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • sheets of waffers, 5 sheets, (approximate) dimensions 8 inches by 12 inches
  • Petite Beurre crackers (8 to 10), ground finely
  • vanilla extract, 1 tsp
  • walnuts, 1cup, ground finely
  • milk, 3/4 cup
  • sugar, 1 1/2 cup
  • unsalted butter, 1 cup

1. In a bowl combine the walnuts and petite beurre. Set aside until this mixture is needed.

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Walnuts and petite beurre mixture.

2. In a pot on high heat, melt the butter with the sugar, milk and vanilla extract. Bring to a boil, being careful to keep a close watch on this heating liquid mixture as it can burn very quickly. Stir constantly.

3. Once this mixture has reached a boil, remove from heat. Then add the walnut/petit beurre mixture from 1, as well as the eggs. Stir continuously for about 5 to 6 minutes. The mixture should thicken and have a porridge consistency. If it’s too watery add a bit more grounded petite beurre. If it’s too thick, add a bit more milk.

4. It’s now time to assemble your oblande. Line a baking sheet to contain any mess created from assembling. Place one waffer sheet on the baking sheet. If your waffer sheet has two different patterns on each side, put the side with “grooves” facing up so that the walnut filling holds in place better. Place a thin layer of filling on the wafer. Repeat until you finish with the last waffer sheet. Put the last layer of filling on the top waffer exposed like in the picture below.

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Layers of waffer and walnut filling. These waffer sheets have a smooth side and a “grooved” side. The groovy side will contain the walnut filling better.

5. Cover the top layer with some parchment and then place some heavy items on top of it. This will help the oblande set. Keep the heavy items on top for about 6 hours.

6. Remove the heavy objects, and then refridgerate several hours before cutting. This will make the oblande much easier to cut.

Enjoy!

Garlic Pasta

17 Nov
Bowtie pasta mixed with garlic and olive oil, garnished with freshly grated kefalotyri cheese.

Bowtie pasta mixed with garlic and olive oil, garnished with freshly grated kefalotyri cheese.

My apologies for the long absence in new postings. School has been very busy. But here’s a very simple and delicious recipe for garlic lovers!

  • 10 to 15 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 450 g pasta, cooked according to the package’s directions (before draining the pasta, save 1/4 cup of the pasta water)
  • (optional) 2 cups of kefalotyri cheese, coarsely grated

1. In a large pan, cook the garlic with olive oil for approximately 10 minutes on medium heat.

2. Once the garlic is cooked, add in the drained pasta and pasta water. Combine well.

3. Serve, and if desired, sprinkle each serving with a generous amount of kefalotyri cheese.

Minced garlic gently cooking in olive oil.

Minced garlic gently cooking in olive oil.

Bowtie pasta with garlic and olive oil.

Bowtie pasta with garlic and olive oil.

Mushroom and Rice Soup

7 Jul
Mushroom and rice soup garnished with parmesan cheese.

Mushroom and rice soup garnished with parmesan cheese.

This recipe provides approximately four servings.

  • 1lb cremini mushrooms, finely chopped
  • about 5 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked with 2 cups of water for several hours until soft. Once ready, squeeze out any liquids (but save all the liquids) and then finely chop the mushrooms.
  • 1/3 cup rice (I used brown rice, but red or wild rice would also be ideal).
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsps unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsps honey or maple syrup
  • 2 cups broth (I used chicken broth but vegetable or beef is fine, too; or even water)
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 sprigs green onion, chopped
  • a few tsps freshly grated parmesan cheese

1. Heat a large deep pot on high. Once hot, add butter, oil, onions and garlic. Turn down to a medium heat. Cook until onions are soft (approximately 5 minutes).

Mushrooms, onion and garlic sauting.

Mushrooms, onion and garlic sauteing.

2. Add the cremini and shitake mushrooms. Sprinkle a little salt as this will help the mushrooms soften faster.

Soup (with no milk, yet) coming to a boil.

Soup (with no milk, yet) coming to a boil.

3. Once the mushrooms are soft add in bay leaves, honey/maple syrup, broth, liquid from the shitake mushrooms, rice and approximately 1 cup of water.

4. Allow soup to come to a boil, then turn down to a simmering heat.

Soup (no milk added yet) after one hour. It has become a warm taupe colour.

Soup (no milk added yet) after one hour. It has become a warm taupe colour.

5. Cover and simmer until rice is super soft (approximately 1 hour). After 1 hour, the soup will have turned a warm taupe colour.

6. Add in milk and green onions. Once the soup begins to boil, it’s ready.

After the milk is added and the soup has come to a boil, it's ready to be eaten. Enjoy.

After the milk is added and the soup has come to a boil, it’s ready to be eaten. Enjoy.

7. Dish into separate bowls. Garnish with grated parmesan cheese and serve.

Colourful Quinoa Salad

23 Jun
Salad with quinoa, cucumber, tomato, carrots and green onion.

Salad with quinoa, cucumber, tomato, carrots and green onion.

  • 1 cup quinoa, cook as instructed
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 spring onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup english cucumber, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 small tomato, finely chopped
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Uncooked quinoa.

Uncooked quinoa.

Finely chopped english cucumber, tomatoes and green onions; and a carrot.

Finely chopped english cucumber, tomatoes and green onions; and a carrot.

1. For a warm salad, combine all the ingredients immediately after the quinoa is finished cooking. Enjoy!

2. For a cold salad, allow the quinoa to cool before combining all the ingredients and chill for at least an 1 hour in the fridge.

Homemade Ketchup

22 Apr
Homemade ketchup stored in a pickling jar.

Homemade ketchup stored in a pickling jar.

The following recipe makes approximately 1.5 cups of ketchup.

  • 6 oz tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar (add another tablespoon of sugar if you prefer sweeter ketchup)
Ketchup mixture simmering in a sauce pan.

Ketchup mixture simmering in a sauce pan.

1. Add all the ingredients to a sauce pan.

2. Place sauce pan on burner and combine well.

3. Allow the mixure to begin boiling.

4. Once mixture is boiling, turn down heat so that the sauce is simmering.

5. Allow the sauce to simmer for approximately 20 minutes. Stir often.

6. Remove from burner and allow ketchup to completely cool before storing in a air tight container. Refrigerate.

Roasted potato wedges with homemade ketchup.

Roasted potato wedges with homemade ketchup.

Sundae Cereal

2 Apr

Cereal with yogurt, honey, dried cranberries, walnuts and cinnamon.

Cereal with yogurt, honey, dried cranberries, walnuts and cinnamon.


My apologies for not posting last week. I have been rather busy and eating mostly simple quick items like cereal, frozen pizzas and canned soup.  But this morning I decided to put in a little effort with my cereal bowl and created a “sundae cereal”.

  • a bowl of cereal (I used Nature’s Path Organic Kamut Krsip.)
  • two big dollops of plain yogurt (I prefer Balkan style yogurt.)
  • a handful of dried cranberries
  • a handful of walnuts
  • 2 to 3 tbsps honey
  • pinch of cinnamon

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1. Mix the walnuts and cranberries with the cereal.

2. Drizzle honey on top.

3. Place yogurt on top.

4. Sprinkle cinnamon.

5. Garnish with a few more cranberries and/or honey.

Coconut Thai Curry Noodle Soup

19 Mar
Coconut Thai (red) curry soup with noodles and zucchini.

Coconut Thai (red) curry soup with noodles and zucchini.

The following recipe serves two.

  • 1 can (400 mL) coconut milk
  • 2 to  3 tbsps thai curry paste (depends on your spice preference)
  • 1 to 2 tbsp oil (canola, vegetable, sunflower, etc.)
  • zucchini, thickly sliced (any type of vegetable can be used, eg. sugar peas, asparagus, spinach, bok choy, bean sprouts, napa cabbage, snow peas, carrots, bean sprouts, shitake mushrooms, baby corn, string beans, etc.)
  • a handful of cilantro, washed and tied
  • half an onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp of lime zest
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 3 to 4 cups of low sodium broth (chicken, beef or vegetable)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 to 3 tbsps soy sauce
  • your choice of noodles, enough for two people (e.g. thin rice noodles, vermicelli, yakisoba noodles, udon noodles, etc.) TIP: soak the noodles in boiling hot water to remove any starches and oil. Soaking time depends on the style of noodle.
  • green onion, 2 sprig, finely chopped (optional)
  • sliced almonds (optional)

1. Heat  a large deep pot on high. Once hot, add in oil, onions, garlic and lime zest.

2. Cook until garlic is brown, then add in coconut milk, thai curry paste and brown sugar. Combine well.

3. Add in broth and an equal amount of water and the cilantro and soy sauce. Bring to a gently boil. Simmer for approximately 20 minutes.

4. Remove the cilantro bundle.

5. Add in noodles and zuchinni.

6. Once noodles and zuchinni are soft, turn off heat and add in lime juice and green onions.

7. Dish out into two large bowls and if so desired, garnish with (toasted) sliced almonds.

There is a lot of variation in this recipe. Here are some suggestions: add 1 to 3 tbsps of fish sauce; sautee in some tofu, pieces of chicken or whole shrimp; simmer the soup broth additionally with lemon grass and ginger; add a splash of sesame oil at the end.