Yesterday I was so tired after a whole week of working/suffering from the icy wind here in Amsterdam (…but I still cycle everyday :P) but, you know, you are never too tired to bake muffins! This morning we had our delicious freshly baked muffins waiting for us on the table 🙂
Red beetroots and dates muffins
Ingredients : (make 10)
one large beetroot
1/2 cup of dates
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup of milk
one cup of wholewheat flour
15gr baking powder
Preheat the oven at 180°C. Clean and chop the beetroot, toss in a large cup with the dates and reduce them in a cream with the help of a mixer. Incorporate the beetroot cream with one egg, sugar and milk. Whisk well and add flour. Add 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder, cinnamon and baking powder. Set the mixture in a muffins mould and bake for 15 minute. Gnammm! 😛
I was on my lunch break few days ago when my boyfriend sent me a photo on my mobile: a bunch of fresh pancakes on a plate with a sprinkle of icing sugar on top. I start drooling! There were looking amazing and surprisingly he didn’t use any milk to prepare them, but just some ripe bananas. I was really looking forward to taste them while sitting at my work, when finally, in the evening, I took a bite and I was delighted! The taste is really nice, not too sweet and perfect for a sunday morning!
Ingredients: (for roughly 8 small pancakes)
2 ripe bananas
3 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 pinch of salt, 2 of cinnamon
Peel the bananas and smash them into a bowl. Add the eggs and whisk well. Add the remaining ingredients and mix till you get a creamy texture. Preheat a pan and pour a small quantity of the dough into it, let the pancake cook for 5 minutes on each sides. Serve warm with icing sugar or jam or what your imagination better suggests!
It’s pretty chilly and cold in Amsterdam, time to gradually abandon the summery salads and pic-nics to warm up with soups and cook with the help of the dear oven instead. Lately, due to less work shifts and more spare time, I am preparing a lot of delicacies for dinner and cakes for daily breakfast, I have to be honest that I am having a lot of fun yet I am relaxing too.
The other day it was pouring outside, it was literaly raining cats and dogs (don’t be shocked, for us it is just normal dutch weather 😉 ) so I decided to surprise my boyfriend back from work with an appetizing roasted chicken with potatoes and onions. Well, it was simply delicious!
Roasted chicken with potatoes and onions
one small chicken or six large chicken legs
five large potatoes
salt, thyme, paprika, cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 190°C. Clean the chicken, taking away fatty flesh and extra skin with the help of a knife. Cut in pieces and marinate with herbs. Chop the onions and the peeled potatoes, reduce them in large pieces. Take a baking tin and grease it with oil, gently arrange the meat with the veggies and season with herbs, mixing with your hands so all the flavours are well incorporated. Add garlic cloves, not peeled. Set in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.
Since I moved to Amsterdam it happens to see the color orange everywhere, especially on 27th April, and it happens to be one of my favourite colours, besides red. Orange reminds me of autumn, falling leaves, rainy days when the only thing you want to do is cuddling your beloved in front of a film after you spent the whole afternoon baking cookies. Orange gives me a sense of tranquillity, warmth and nostalgic happiness. Feelings that also this easy soup evokes to me…
Carrot & onion soup
Ingredients : (2 servings)
2 cups of water
2 (very) large carrots
1 large onion
3 cloves of garlic
curcuma, white pepper, paprika, nutmeg
Wash accurately the carrots and chop them, without peeling. Chop the onion and garlic too.
Toss all the ingredients into a large pot and add a tablespoon of olive oil. Let it cook for 5 minutes. Add one cup of water and let it boil for 15 minutes. Reduce the veggies into a cream with a mixer and add the remaining water. Stir well. Boil for other 5 minutes, add the herbs and serve it.
One of my classic treat for the autumn season: the apple cake.
This time, instead of using a rectangular or an oval shaped tin, I’ve baked the cake into a loaf-shaped tin and the result looks amazing; I love how the apple slices are gently incorporated into the dough and how both cinnamom and chocolate give a sweet touch to this extremely simple recipe. Perfect for daily breakfast!
Apple cinnamon bread
15gr baking soda
120gr brown sugar (I have used basterdsuiker)
4 tablespoon apple juice
5 tablespoon milk
2 tablespoon olive oil
2 sweet apples, sliced
Preheat the oven at 180°C. Mix flour with sugar into a bowl, add baking soda and mix. Pour milk and apple juice, add the egg and mix until you get a soft and well incorporated dough. Add finally some pinches of cinnamon, chopped dark chocolate and half of the apple slices, stir the dough with a spatula and put it into a baking tin suitable for bread. Add the remaining apple slices into the top of the dough with the peel side facing out. Bake for 45 minutes at 180°C. Serve at room temperature.
I love cooking with spices and natural ingredients and since I discovered the benefits and the simplicity of preparing drinks and food with ginger, I am not abandoning it anymore. In my fridge there is always a fresh root of ginger plus in my cabinet I never miss plenty of herbs and spices in little cans and bottles. I think this is a tradition of my family, to always prefer spices and herbs instead of salt and artificial seasonings and I am more than glad about it!
Talking about ginger, last week I had a strong pain in my abdomen and I felt like exploding, so I decided to follow a simple recipe for a hot drink based on this root. In 20 minutes I was able to prepare and taste this special and relieving drink, which helped me to kick out my pain and warm me up before going to bed. It worked!
Ginger is good for your stomach, it relieves nausea and motion sickness, it is good for mentrual discomfort and it boosts your blood circulation by helping your arteries, it reduces infiammations and fights colds, it warms you up and kicks up your energy. If you want to read more : http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=72
4cm of a fresh ginger root
5 glasses of fresh water
juice of half a lemon
Put water into a pot with minced ginger root. Cook on moderate heat and let it boil for 5 minutes, add lemon juice and take the pot out from the fire. Add honey if you want to give a sweet taste to the tea. Drink it hot and enjoy the benefits of this amazing beverage.
We had an avocado standing in the fruit-plate for a few days, it became riped between apples and cherries so yesterday night was the perfect time to get it into a mexican guacamole sause.
Guacamole it’s perfect in wraps, tortillas and with raw vegetables as carrots, sellery, peppers and fennel, but also served at barbeques with meat and salads. A little bit of freshness for this summer which is at its door… (Today will be 30°C!)
Ingredients: (x 1 medium jar)
one riped avocado
three tablespoons of lemon juice
one tablespoon of capers
one tablespoon of parsley
three teaspoons of olive oil
one teaspoon of kerry, paprika and nutmeg
one big pinch of salt
Peel the avocado and mash it with a fork into a bowl.
When you get a kind of puree mix, add lemon juice, olive oil and capers.
Stir well and add spices.
Store the guacamole in fridge in a hermetic jar.
Summer is finally arrived in Nederland (except for today that is pretty cloudy outside) and the sun shines from early in the morning untill 11 pm. Sounds amazing!
Long daytime, barbeque smells all around, pop music from little local bars, children playing in the streets and city-centre-squares full of people…
Perfect time also to go for simple and fresh food to feel light and healty!
To load up these summer mornings I prepared those mango and banana muffins which are delicious, believe me! 😉
Mango and banana muffins
250gr whole wheat flour
80gr plain flour
80gr brown sugar
half of a mango
two riped bananas
one cup of (roiboos) tea
15gr baking powder
one teaspoon of baking soda
plus: raisins, chocolate chips, cocoa, cinnamon
Peel the bananas in a bowl and reduce the flesh in a purea.
Add sugar and melt it with a cup of tea.
Add peeled and dice-chopped mango.
Add flour and baking powder little by little, mixing well.
Add a teaspoon of baking soda.
When you get a soft dough transfert it to muffin’s moulds and bake ’em for 25 minutes at 190°C in a previously warmed oven.
Decorate them with your favourite frosting! (Can you suggest me some of ’em,please?)