Saturday 31 August 2013

Mushrooms in Supreme Cream sauce & Whole meal Penne

(click on the pictures for a larger Image)
I thought something was missing since days and today the cravenness was simply so great that I made it again : ) Yes it’s none other than my Favorite Pasta.
This time I made a very healthy and simple quick dish with the freshly bought organic Mushrooms. I made the creamy creamy cream sauce the most favorite here in Germany called the “Rahmsoße”
I must admit I used to buy the readymade sauce packets till I discovered what stuff they add in those packs :( Of course we learn by the passing time and one is more and more aware and conscious of what one eats and buys. I have changed my cooking style a lot and have established a healthy way of cooking, of course not 100% but at least 80%. I make this tasty sauce since a long time now; it goes so well with all roasts, fries and pasta of course.
A meal ready in less than 30 minutes!
I prepared the penne as we always do, boil, drain and steam.
Cut the fresh soft mushrooms in thin slices, always wash them shortly before you have to cut and cook, or else they tank lots of water and become soggy and tasteless.
Just fry them in 1 tbs of butter on a medium heat, add no salt as the butter is salty.
Fry just half way, we don’t need to cook them, they taste delicious that way.
Garnish with fresh basil leaves, the Aroma is unbeatable!
Now you can make the Cream Sauce for it and this is how I make it:
1 ½ tsp butter
80 ml double cream
50 ml milk
200 ml Vegetable stock
1 tsp tomato paste
3 -3 tsp flour
50 ml cold water
*mix the flour slowly in the cold water so there are no lumps
*mix the rest ingredients before hand
*Now heat the butter
*squeeze the tomato paste onto it and stir fast, don’t let it burn
* pour the Vegetable stock mix immediately on it before the paste turns dark brown
*stir and mix so all mixes and then pour the flour mix slowly and keep stirring
*cook on a medium heat and keep stirring as it will get thicker slowly
*takes around 5 minutes, it’s ready as the consistency is creamy

For the Vegetable stock you can make a pot once and freeze in small air-tight boxes or ice cube trays

Just cut  cubes of vegetables like:
1 big pod ofCelery
2-3 Carrots
small bunch of Leek
1 bunch of fresh parsley
1 big Onion
3-4 pods of Garlic pods
300 gr Mushrooms
1 fresh bunch of Spring onion

Fresh Thyme and Rosemary leaves



First of all stir all the vegetables in 3 tbs butter slightly
Add around 3 glasses of water and let it cook at least an hour, You will see some foam building around so keep removing with a  skimmer
Season with salt and black pepper accordingly
Let it cool down completely then either store in fridge if you need it in the next 2 days or then best is to freeze cubes. This is what I usually do, just fill it in the ice cubes bags and you have it ready to use any time.
I also use the Organic mixed Vegetable stock powder which is without any taste enhancers’ or any extra preservatives’, it is a mix of pure dry organic Vegetables. If any one living in Germany wants to buy, then best is from Alnatura “Gemüsebrühe”
May be many don’t find it fancy but believe me it is a light yet very delicious and filling meal.
Of course if you have a Basil pot near you, that increases the charm of this Pasta dish:)
One cannot stop eating the Penne, this is what we did,
 Penne-dip in sauce-in mouth : )
Eat healthy and Stay Fit :D


Tuesday 27 August 2013

Butter-Almond Sheet Cake / Niedersächsischer Butterkuchen

 (click on the pictures for a larger Image)
This Butter Cake is a Classic Saxon specialty with lots of Butter and Sugar and Almond coating.
For quite a long time it was known as a  festive Cake in North Germany  made on special occasions like Birthdays and Weddings. With the passing time it is a must on any afternoon tea table and is a very favorite one of us all here in Germany.
One of my Families most favorite cakes which I bake very often.
The original Butter Cake (Der Norddeutsche Butterkuchen) is made with fresh yeast and tastes and smells totally divine when fresh out of the oven.

I make this easy one using baking powder, it is equally delicious baked very fast and the best thing is that  you can start making it as you hear the door bell of your invited guests : ) It is ready in no time with a great great taste and aroma and is finished even more fast than you can bake it : )
This is usually made in the backing tray, as it should be baked flat not like a loaf form.
If you are weight conscious then sorry it’s not for you, you can just watch one eating : )

So this is what you need for the cake:

I use a measuring cup for these ingredients
5 Eggs
1 cup Sugar (makes 115 gr)
3 cups Plain flour (each cup is 115 gr)
1 pk double cream/whipping cream (200ml)
 4 tsp Baking powder (level)
For the top you need:
100gr Butter (soft not melted!! )
1 cup Sugar (115 gr)
2-3 tbs Milk
250gr Almond flakes
3 tbs Vanilla sugar

*Whisk eggs in a broad bowl till fluffy and creamy.
*Add the double cream and sugar and mix it with a wooden spoon.
*Fold in the flour slowly, keep mixing it to avoid lumps.
*Whisk the batter for 3 minutes.
*In the end add in the baking powder and just mix it on a low speed.
*Pour it out on the oven backing tray,(light greased) bake it in the pre- heated oven 170°C for about 10 minutes.
*In the mean time, add the sugar and milk to the butter and mix it into a creamy soft form.
*As soon as the cake seems fluffy and a bit light brown insert a tooth pick to check and take it out.
*Spread the butter cream with a flat spoon, very gently and with soft hands all over the cake top. Be careful the surface will be warm and can have cracks if you dump the butter harshly
*Sprinkle the almond flakes evenly on the top, sprinkle the vanilla sugar on them, and bake it for another 10-15 minutes.

*As the almonds and sugar turn light golden brown it is done.
 *You will see a nice crispy golden brown top, its ready to serve, and if you eat it warm it tastes divine!!!!!!!!
This cake stays crunchy if you keep it in the cake container, or just in the the baking tray and cover with the Alu Foil, as in an air-tight box the almonds will become soft and sticky.
I have made the original one with the fresh yeast too, that is a classy cake as well, I will upload it in the next days, so keep checking : )
Bake and Enjoy the Scrumptious taste!

Please don't be irritated at the changing Colors of Black and Grey after each para, this is how the site is accepting my text at the Moment :(
Some built-in Problem i Think :)

Saturday 24 August 2013


                                        (click on the pictures for a larger Image)

Spell it any way it remains the ultra delicious divine crispy creamy juicy Dessert : )
The interesting thing is that this dessert belongs to Morocco, Arabia, Turkey, Greek and Asia.
Whomever you ask they say “It’s ours” :D
Well at the moment it’s mines as I have a tray full lying in front of me :D
Last week as I was on a window shopping tour with my friend Susanne, we bought these for our tea way back home. My friend is simply in love with this dessert, as she mentioned having a Family gathering this week, I thought to surprise her with this.
Kunafeh is made with the shredded Phyllo/Filo dough pastry, I bought the pastry from my Turkish shop, it can be made at home but not at my home :)
It is very similar to the Vermicelli we usually buy for our sweet Sheer but the dough is different and won’t stay crispy when poured with the sugar syrup.
I have made a step by step collage to show how and what I did.
It is a time consuming fun, the fine pastry threads will spread all over so keep your broom handy. If you buy the pastry packet it needs to be pulled apart,each thread each bit.
I started doing it but then gave up and used a big knife and scissors to cut and then processed it in the machine to make it finer.
 (Click on the Picture for a larger Image) 
So here’s the step by step:
1. Open the 500g pack and open the threads of the shredded dough in a broad tray, use a knife if you find is easier like me
2. The dough must be in really small pieces
3. Drizzle the 100g melted butter all over and mix well
4. The fluffy dough will decrease in volume as it absorbs the butter Divide the dough in two halves
5. Sprinkle ½ tsp orange color on half of the dough threads
6. Mix the color well, as the beauty of this dessert is this shiny colored top
7. Process the second half of the dough till it is fine and broken
8. See the difference, the white one is fine and the orange one is as is.
9. Now press the white fine dough on a baking sheet, press with palms so the dough sets well


The fine dough should sit firm on the bottom as we have to do the filling on it
There are many ways of making it, many just fill in the cream, the most popular is the one with cheese, and some fill in semolina with cheese to give it a heavy filling.
I made it the way it is most common, with cheese and I used some cheese spread Philadelphia too.
(Click on the Picture for a larger Image)  
So here we go the second part step by step.
1. Crumble 400g Mozzarella, and mix 200g of Philadelphia with drops of milk
2. Drop the cream cheese all over the dough carefully and spread with a spoon
3. Now sprinkle the crumbled cheese all over and cover up all the space
4. Sprinkle coarse crushed 150 g Almonds over the cheese
5. Now cover the whole with the rest second half pastry dough and don’t press it too firm, this part should stay fluffy
6. I sprinkled some more Almonds on the top
7. Sprinkle 50 g crushed Pistachios’ and bake in a preheated oven on 180°C around 20 minutes till the top seems nice crispy brown
Now I forgot to take a picture of the last step and that was pouring the sugar syrup :(
But that’s easy, I had made the syrup first of all as this should be cold
**So take 2 cups of sugar and 1 ½ cup water, juice of 1 lemon and 2-3 tbs honey
Boil this till it gets a bit thicker, set it aside to cool**
8. Now as you take out the tray, pour this syrup slowly from right to left and vise versa
Just do it slowly so you don’t miss any corner but be careful if you feel the pieces seem wet then stop, as then it may become soggy
And now some of my favorite shots, I am so in love with these crispy fine threads *:*

Your Tasty Kunafeh is ready, give it a time of 2 hours at least till the pieces absorb the syrup then you can cut it and have it with a cup of hot tea like I did :D


Kadin Budu Köfte

                                             (click on the pictures for a larger Image)

Hmmm you will wonder what is this and what language is it...... isn’t it ?
Okay it is Turkish language and these are very famous and specific Turkish patties, served as an appetizer or even as a main meal with the Turkish Bread and Salad
You know I love to know and then write the long stories behind the different dishes, where the names comes and why, but this time I decided that it is better  you Google out the translation of these and read the back ground : )
Whoever named them must have had a good mind to do that :D
This I can tell you that they are really SUPER TASTY and really worth trying them at least once or twice or may be thrice, I will surely make them again and again as my Family loved it and we gobbled all the lot I had made :)
How I came to make them… I had heard its name many times and seen them behind the glass case in the Turkish restaurants. I thought they were simple patties as we usually make at home with potato or Veg and on asking “what is this?” I got the name “They are Kadin Budu”

So of course I surfed the very day to check what ingredients they have in it (never came to make them since long) and after checking many sites I planned to make them today.
I have taken the recipe from a Turkish site but have taken my own measurements so I will write down what exactly I used for these here.I made 17 patties out of this mixture.

For the Patties
350 g Mince (half half Beef/lamb)
1 big onion (tiny cubes)
4 cloves of garlic (fine chopped)
1 cup boiled white rice from yesterday
½ bunch of parsley (Chopped)
½ cup grated cheese
1 tsp salt
½ tsp cumin powder
½ tsp black pepper from the mill
½ tsp thyme
¼ tsp cinnamon powder
½ tsp red chili flakes (optional)
For frying
*Bread crumbs
 (I made my rusks crumbs)
*Egg for coating
*Flour to mix with the crumbs
*Oil for frying
-divide the mince in 2 halves
-cut fine cubes of the onion and chop the garlic or cut in very tiny slices
-heat some oil in the pot, fry the garlic for few seconds, and then add the onion
-fry them till light pinkish in color don’t over fry till brown!
-now add the half mince and turn and twist and fry till all opens up
-while stirring add the spices to it and keep mixing on a medium heat so the mince does not turn hard
-we don’t cook it till full, just take away when the mince looks good half done
-now add the chopped parsley in it and mix gently, then turn over all in a big bowl
-prepare the white rice, or if you have a left over, wonderful; use that!
-just warm the rice and mix and press  it 2-3 times so the grains get soft, turn this over on the fried mince
-now add the rest half raw mince to the fried one with rice
-sprinkle some cinnamon on it, if you want some more red chili flakes, you can add it now
-now knead this mixture with your hands very well so all three things get good mixed up.
-in the end mix in the grated cheese.
This is how the mixture will look like when all is added.
It looks grainy : )
Keep it in the fridge for at least half an hour so it is easy to form patties when it sets.
Now grease your palm very slightly and form chubby lengthwise patties, make all of them before you toss and dip so your hands stay clean.
-now mix the flour in the crumbs in one bowl ( I crushed my rusks to make the crumbs as I find the bread crumbs too thick and they absorb too much oil or butter)
-beat 2 eggs in another bowl
-heat the oil in the frying pan
-now toss in crumbs, dip in egg and fry on a medium heat so you get an even color and also the raw mince needs time to cook!
-you will see how they fry into really fluffy and chubby patties :)
Serve with Salad and bread, I made chapatti and we had it with my home made tamarind chutney (imli ki chutney) and the Chili garlic sauce.
The taste is so delicious, they are soft yet you feel each grain in mouth, they are crispy, they are incredible!!
 The tip is:
First toss in crumbs then in egg, this way we avoid the extra absorbing oil in the crumbs!
Happy cooking, do try these you’ll like it!