Thursday, September 29, 2011

Simple but delightful kedgeree

How I love kedgeree. I know it's meant to be a breakfast-brunch type of dish, but curry doesn't go very well with my coffee, I think. I prefer it in the evenings, when I don't have much time to cook. I used smoked salmon, which goes very well with the curry.

smoked salmon kedgeree (Explore)

What do you need?

400 g basmati rice
750 ml chicken or vegetable stock
1 onion, chopped
2 tbsp vegetable oil
4 spring onions, chopped
1 chili, deseeded and sliced
1 tbsp yellow curry powder or paste (to taste)
1 knob of butter
4 hard boiled eggs
200 g smoked salmon
1/2 bunch of coriander (cilantro) or flat leaf parsley
1 lemon (juice)


Pour the stock into a saucepan and add the rice. Bring to the boil (lid on). When the rice boils, remove the lid and let it simmer on low medium heat until all the stock is gone. Turn off the heat and put the lid back on.

Heat the oil in a large pan and tip in the chopped onion. Fry over medium heat for 8 minutes. Stir in the curry and let it fry for another minute. Stir in the cooked rice and add the nob of butter. Keep stirring. When the butter is melted and the rice is beautiful yellow, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the smoked salmon, the spring onions, the chili and the coriander or parsley. Taste and add pepper and salt if needed. Peel the eggs and cut them in 4, add them to the kedgeree.

That's it!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Moroccan butternut soup.

Pumpkin soup can be very dull, I think. A dollop of cream just make it richer, but not very exciting. This one, I really love. It's simple and full of flavor. Give it a try!

maroccan spiced pumpkin soup central framing

What do you need?
2 tbsp olive oil
1 leek, (white part) sliced
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
1 cinnamon stick
3cm piece ginger, peeled and sliced
1 1/2 tsp cumin
2 carrots, peeled chopped
1.5kg butternut cut into 3cm pieces
75 g red or yellow lentils
1.5 l of chicken or vegetable stock
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Cilantro or coriander
pepper and salt

Heat the oil in a pan over low-medium heat, add the leek and the garlic and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add chili, cinnamon, cumin and ginger and cook for about 1 minute. Add the carrots, pumpkin and lentils, stir. Pour in the stock and let simmer for little under one hour.

Remove the cinnamon stick and add the lemon juice. Process or blend the soup until smooth, reheat the soup and add salt or pepper if needed. Serve with some fresh coriander.


Saturday, September 24, 2011

Roll cake with tiramisu filling... a real treat!

In Dutch

Last thursday I had this crazy idea to make a tiramisu and a roll cake. But then I thought why not combine the two? And it worked out really, really well. Everybody came back for seconds. To me that's a sign that it wasn't such a crazy idea after all. ;-)

First I moisten the cake with a coffee syrup, then I add the tiramisu filling and I finish the cake with whipped cream and chocolate shavings. It looks like a lot of work, but it really isn't. It took me 30 minutes tops.

tiramisu cake

What do you need for the cake:

5 eggs
150 fine caster sugar
5 tbsp milk
150 g self raisin flour

Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F)

Whisk the eggs with the sugar until a thick and almost white consistency. Carefully fold in the milk and gradually add the sifted self raisin flour.

Grease a 10x15X1 inch baking pan and line with waxed paper. Evenly spread batter into the pan. Bake the cake for 7 to 8 minutes (until the cake springs back when you touch it lightly).

Turn the cake immediately out onto a linen towel. Peel of the paper and roll the cake up in the towel, starting with the short end. Let it cool on a rack.

The syrup:

2 cups of very strong coffee
1 cup of confectioners sugar
3 tbsp coffee liqueur (I used sambucca con caffè, but Kahlua or Amaretto is fine too)

Add all the ingredients in a saucepan, bring to the boil and reduce by half on high heat. Set aside.

The filling:

300 g mascarpone
3 tbsp confectioners sugar
1 egg (room temperature)
3 tbsp coffee liqueur

Separate the egg yolk from the egg white. Blend the egg yolk with the sugar and then add the mascarpone and the coffee liqueur. Stir until you have a smooth texture. Whisk the egg white until stiff and fold in the mascarpone mixture. Let it rest in the fridge until you need it.

For the frosting:

300 ml cream (thoroughly chilled)
3 tbsp confectioners sugar
2 tbsp coffee liqueur
chocolate shavings

Chill the bowl and the beaters. Whip the cream on medium speed and add the sugar. Keep on whipping until soft peaks are forming. Slowly add the liqueur. Set aside.

Assembling the roll cake:

Carefully unroll the cake and moisten with the syrup. Then spread the tiramisu filling over the cake within one 1 inch of the edges. Roll the cake up again. Spread the whipped cream over the top of the cake. Sprinkle with chocolate shavings. Keep the cake in the fridge until served.

Have fun!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Whoohooo carrot cupcakes!

Carrot cake is not really known in Belgium, and for once the Belgians are wrong. Carrot cake is absolutely heaven, especially these cupcakes. The frosting I used is a mixture of cream cheese and fromage blanc. If you can't find fromage blanc, feel free to use butter (at room temperature).

carrot cupcake

For the cupcake:

100 g sultanas
zest of 1 orange
Juice of ½ orange
175 g brown sugar
175 ml canola oil
3 large eggs (slightly beaten)
140 g grated carrots
175 g self raisin flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg (grinded).

One hour in advance:

Put the sultanas in a bowl together with the zest and the orangejuice and let them soak for an hour. If you don't have the time, put them in the microwave and nuke them for 1 minute (maximum!)

Mix the sugar, carrots, oil, the raisins and the juice, and the slightly beaten eggs in a large bowl. Sift in the flour, baking soda and the spices and mix with the rest of the batter.

Divide the batter over the cupcakes and let them bake in a pre-heated oven at 160° for about 20-25 minutes.

Allow to cool.

For the frosting

100 g cream cheese
100 g fromage blanc (or softened butter)
3 tbsp confectioners sugar (sifted)
2 tbsp lemon juice

Just whisk everything in a bowl and decorate the cupcakes. That's it!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Subtle and moist Italian cake with fresh pears

Minimum effort, maximum flavor. That's the secret ingredient for this lovely cake. It is a really easy and simple recipe to make, but it is sooooo yummmmmm.... Only use very ripe pears for this recipe. Mix all the ingredients with a whisk, don't use a food processor. It enhances the flavor and keeps the cake fluffy and moist.

italian pear cake

What do you need?

100 g soft butter (diced - room temperature)
200 g plain flour
15 g baking powder
200 g caster sugar
40 g pine nuts
zest of 1 lemon
3 whole eggs
125 ml milk
1 tbsp vanilla-extract
2 pears peeled, cut into 4 or 8 wedges*

italian pear cake piece

Pre-heat the oven at 180° (350° F). Grease a cake pan (25 cm/10 inches) and line the pan with parchment paper as shown on photo above.

Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl. Beat the eggs with the milk, and vanilla extract and add to the dry ingredients. Whisk in the butter, don't worry if the batter is still lumpy. Pour the batter in the cake pan and add the pear wedges.

Bake for 35 minutes. And that's it!


italian pear cake

*You can also add 40 g of sultana's and/or 50 g of dark chopped chocolate.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Lovely fresh tuna pasta salad with lemon

Dutch version

This dish is absolutely superb! It's full of flavor, easy and quick. And perfect to take to work or school - if you have any leftovers that is...

citrus tuna pasta

What do you need? (serves 4)

500 g short pasta (1 pound)
1 large bunch of basil
1 large bunch of parsley
2 tbsp capers
2 anchovy fillets (canned)
1 lemon (juice + zest)
1 kl dijon mustard
1 garlic clove
100 ml olive oil
200 g peas (frozen)
1 can of tuna(400g)
pepper and salt

Prepare the pasta as indicated on the packaging.

Chop the basil, garlic and parsley. Put them in a blender together with the capers, anchovies, mustard, half of the zest and the lemonjuice. Mix and slowly add the olive oil. If you don't have a blender, don't worry, just finely chop everything and stir in the olive oil.

3 minutes before the pasta is done, add the frozen peas to the pasta. After 3 minutes drain the pasta and the peas and rinse with cold water. Add the pasta back to the pot and stir in the sauce and the tuna. Serve cold or warm, topped with the remaining zest.

This recipe is based on a recipe I found in the Dutch Delicious, edition October 2011.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A grilled baguette with cambozola, pear and chanterelles

Dutch version

A sandwich can be extremely dull, don't you think? This sandwich however is anything but that. The sweetness of the pear, the sharpness of the cheese and the nutty mushrooms are a match made in heaven. If you can't find cambozola, you can always use another blue cheese.

pear and cambozola sandwich

What do you need?

1 wholegrain (or sourdough) baguette
2 slices of cambozola
1/4 ripe pear, sliced
100 g chanterelles (or wild mushrooms)
1 clove of garlic crushed
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 nob of butter
pepper and salt

Clean the chanterelles with a soft brush. Melt the butter in a frying pan and fry the chanterelles on medium heat. Add the garlic and the parsley. Stir and fry the mushrooms for 5 minutes or so until they are done.

Slice the baguette in two (lengthwise), add the pear, then the cheese and finish with the chanterelles. Put them under the grill for about two minutes until the cheese is melted.

pear and cambozola sandwich 2

You'll be in heaven. Guaranteed!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Donna Hay's velvety cauliflower soup with porcini oil

Nederlandse versie

This is a really simple but very classy soup. The porcini oil is an absolute bonus in this recipe, it is so much better than the truffle oil you can buy. You definitely have to give it a try.

Donna Hay's couliflower soup with porcini oil

What goes in it?

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 cauliflower, roughly chopped
1 liter or 4 cups of chicken stock
1 liter or 4 cups of water
salt & pepper
200 ml fat free cream (1 cup)

Heat the oil in large saucepan, add the onion and cauliflower. Fry gently for 2 – 3 minutes until the onion is tender. Add chicken stock and water, and let it cook for 10 – 12 minutes or until the cauliflower is done.

Mix the soup in a food processor until smooth. Pour it back into the pan, stir in cream and simmer for another 5 mins. Add pepper and salt if needed.

Porcini Oil

15 g (3 tbsp) dried procini
150 ml or 3/4 cup olive oil

Slowly heat the oil and dried porcini in a saucepan for five minutes over low heat. Set aside and let it cool.

Pour the soup into a bowl or a plate and drizzle the porcini oil over the soup.

Really beautiful.

1001 wedding nights.

Nederlandse versie

It was like a dream. Covered with gold and fire. There were belly dansers and fighting fire breathers. A wedding especially organized for Elza D and me. Or at least, it seemed like it. All weddings are special, but this one I'll definitely never forget.

Here are some pics I've made.






duo nacht 10


Wedding 9/17

vuur gevecht

vuur rug 2

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Pasta with creamy pumpkin and sage

In het Nederlands

The idea was to make a classic risotto with pumpkin and sage, but I forgot to buy the rice. And I figured, risotto is Italian and so is pasta. Why not give it a try? It works a charm. Again this recipe is very quick and easy. Just how I like it.

pumkin pasta with sage

What do you need (serves 4) ?

1 pumpkin or butternut squash (750 g peeled, cut in chunks)
1 onion chopped
2 cloves of garlic chopped
1/2 glas of dry white wine
20 cl pouring cream (fat free is okay)
1/2 bunch of sage
pepper and salt
500 g pasta (spaghetti)
olive oil

Pecorino or parmesan cheese. Or blue cheeses like stilton, roquefort, Danish blue... to make it even more flavorsome.

Prepare the pasta as indicated on the pack.

Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the garlic and the onion, fry till the onion is soft. Add the pumpkin and fry for a minute or two. Pour in the wine and let it simmer for 10 minutes.

Chop the sage, add to the pumpkin. Pour in the cream and add pepper, salt and nutmeg to taste. Add the cooked spaghetti and sprinkle with the cheese of your choice.


Pumpkin pasta with peccorino and sage

A fair in Leuven

Nederlandse versie

Just a small impression of my visit to the fair in Leuven. Most cities in Belgium organize a fair once or twice a year. As a kid I wasn't really fond of fairs. But now, since I have my camera things have changed. I still don't like them, but they are great to photograph.

play city



I think Obama had something else in mind when he said "Yes we can".

yes we cans





wit madammeke hoek

These are the one and only Belgian waffles. Not the chewy things you have for breakfast.


Pink is the new black it seems.

roos duo

Oh well...

The extremely simple and quick peanut-yogurt chicken

Nederlandse versie

This is my first blogpost in English (or is it Dunglish?) so bare with me. The concept of this blog is simple. Simple food, simple recipes. Idiot proof. I am no Martha Stewart, fussy is not in my dictionary. So lets get this thing started with my peanut-yogurt chicken.

chicken with peanut sauce

What do you need (4 servings):

4 chicken filets
3 cm (1 inch) fresh ginger (grated)
1 chili (deseeded, chopped)
1 big clove of garlic (grated)
2 to 3 tbsp good quality peanut butter
1 small bunch of coriander (cilantro) (stalks chopped, keep leaves aside)
200 ml (1 cup) greek yogurt (or full fat)
150 ml chicken stock (3/4 cup)
2 tbsp canola oil

Cut the chicken filets into small chunks. Heat the oil in a frying pan and quickly brown the chicken chunks on every side for a minute or so. Add the grated ginger and garlic, the chopped chili and coriander (cilantro) stalks. Stir and fry for another minute.

Add the stock, and the peanut butter and stir in the yogurt. Let it gently bubble for 8 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Take of the head and serve with basmati rice, topped with the cilantro/coriander leaves.

That's it! A great meal within 15 minutes. Enjoy!