Monday, April 27, 2009

The Daring Bakers #2 Cheesecake...

My second challenge - and something easy this time... or so I thought... ;) The April 2009 challenge is hosted by Jenny from Jenny Bakes. She has chosen Abbey's Infamous Cheesecake as the challenge. Why infamous - I have no idea but hope my will be 'famous' ;)

Cheesecake is very popular in Poland but we make it differently... The base is always some kind of dough (not crumbled crackers or cookies mixed with butter etc.) it's usually short crust pastry. This was my first of the kind and it was great fun making it :) I had only some problems with the base as I had to substitute graham crackers with something else - my choice was chocolate chip cookies... which worked great! I will definitely make it once again but this time with different base - I just have to experiment ;) I had too much batter so I've made some mini-cheesecakes too, they were very 'handy'.



How to make it...

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Caesar Salad...

It was my first time making this salad... or actually it was my Hubby's first time ;) I was only helping. It was our First Wedding Anniversary yesterday and we wanted something different but not 'heavy' to go with a nice bottle of French white wine - we had a quite big lunch and facing a huge, rich dinner wasn't an option for us ;) We also got a black forest gateaux from our friends to celebrate the anniversary :) The Caesar salad was very easy to do, we had to make some adjustments but at the end it was a 'worth-the-effort' salad (OK, actually no effort was needed to make it ;) ). We first eat it in our favourite restaurant 'Il pomo doro' and it was amazing! Light, crispy, slightly warm and really good, creamy dressing. So here it is our version of this very popular dish.



How to make it...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Home made ricotta...

I thought that it's extremely difficult to make your own cheese... I was wrong! This recipe for home made ricotta is SO simple that anyone can do it - and should do it, as there is nothing better than eating your own, hand and home made food (and no, sandwich doesn't count ;) ). This is what I was missing the most on emigration - normal white cheese. I love it sprinkled on top of the pasta with some sugar or mixed with herbs, cream and spices as a paste on the sandwich... I know that this isn't anything special or unusual but if you like white cheese you should try it :)



How to make it...

Friday, April 17, 2009

Anjum's New India (book review)...


"Anjum's New India"
by Anjum Anand

Hardback (256 pages)

Chapters: Introduction, Before you start, Basic recipes, Light meals and snacks, Fish and seafood, Chicken, Meat, Vegetables, Beans and lentils, Rice and bread, Raitas and chutneys, Desserts and drinks.

It's not a normal cookbook. It's a place where you can visit different regions of India and sit behind the table tasting all those different flavors. If you like Indian cuisine or think that Indian food is nothing more that the famous curry, you definitely should buy this book! It will show you regional cooking and different ingredients characteristic for different regional cuisine. All recipes are preceded by small introduction of the dish and it's short history. You will also find some useful tips on preparing your own garam masala mix and basics of Indian cuisine.

The book was 'supported' by BBC series "Indian food made easy" - and easy it is! You don't have to order take away anymore, you can cook Indian food yourself. All recipes are simple, you don't have to buy whole bag of new ingredients, as you probably don't even know how to pronounce their name - although you will have to buy some basics like spices for garam masala or lentils.

Generally, this book is a great introduction to a very diverse Indian cuisine - for both novices and those who are already familiarised with Indian food.
This book is now one of my favourites and one that I use quite often too. It's a window to a fantastic and very diverse world of Indian food and culture. To say more - all Anjum's recipes always turn out perfect and you don't spend whole day in the kitchen either.

Some of the recipes I've already tried:



Red lamb shank korma








Kaszmiri lamb kebabs and roti bread








Tarka Dal


Keralan chicken








About the author:
Anjum Anand grew up in London but has also lived and studied in Geneva, Paris and Madrid. After gaining a European Business degree she decided to develop her interest in Indian cookery and, in particular, making her native food fresher, lighter and simpler to cook. She has worked across the world in innovative restaurants such as CafĂ© Spice in New York, the Mondrian Hotel in Los Angeles, and the Park Royal Hotel’s Indian restaurant in New Delhi, but her real love is delicious and stylish food that is simple enough to cook at home. She challenges fiercely the assertion that Indian food is a special occasion meal and is determined to make ‘cooking an Indian’ as common as rustling up a stir-fry. (...) She has family homes in Delhi and Calcutta and loves the regional and cultural traditions of Indian food with the passion of a real insider. She brought this passion and knowledge to her BBC 2 six-part series, Indian Food Made Easy (2007) and Indian Food Made Easy (2008). The series have aired around the world and her book can be found around the world. Anjum is a regular guest on the Food Channel’s Market Kitchen and a regular contributor to The Times Online food pages. - by anjumanand.co.uk

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter in Poland...

Hi all! Hope you will have a big Easter feast - I know I will, considering that I'm back at my family home! :)


Some Polish Easter traditions, for those who aren't familiar with them, yet...
Easter is one of the prominent festivals in the central-European nation of Poland. The rich cultural heritage of Poland is reflected in the Easter tide celebrations. While religious ceremonies follow the rituals of the Christian church, Easter celebrations have imbibed elements of native Polish culture.

"Pisanki" (coloured eggs) are the first unmistakable sign of Easter. The is an old tradition that one should cook the eggs in onion's peels. As a result we are getting beautiful golden eggs, on which we can scratch aa eastern pattern. Nowdays eggs have many different colours and can be decorated literally with anything - cutouts, wool, wax, colors...



Sunday, April 05, 2009

Meatballs...

Another invention of my talented Hubby. We had a pack of minced beef and we got pearl barley - which is very popular in Poland. It's used instead of noddles in soups or as an addition to sauces. Hubby had an evening free so he decided to relax in the kitchen. The result was delicious - especially, that we almost forgot how good is the pearl barley... I'm giving you the recipe for meatballs and sauce, as you can serve it almost with everything.


How to make it...

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Mozzarella - easy peasy...

I LOVE mozzarella. This is just quick, easy and soooo delicious way of eating it. You really don't need any recipe for that - but just to let you know how I like my mozzarella cheese :) Of course besides this one I like i a salad or melted on top of a nice roll... hmmm... or on a pizza... enough! I'm getting hungry! ;)


How to make it...