Category Archives: Recipes

Tiramisu – My favorite dessert

This is my favorite dessert, since it has coffee, alcohol, and creamy mascarpone.

And it is super easy to make, though the ingredients are not available in every store. The original recipe calls for raw egg yolk, but by using eggnog we circumvent the salmonella risk :)

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs Mascarpone
  • 3/4 cups eggnog
  • 3 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 2 lbs lady fingers
  • 2 cups cold strong coffee/espresso
  • 1 tbsp cocoa

Method
Mix mascarpone, eggnog, and sugar until smooth.
Add extra alcohol as desired (officially, this should be Marsala, but I’ve successfully used whiskey or brandy).
Dip lady fingers into coffee briefly and put a layer into something like a 9″x13″ pyrex.
Top with half of the mascarpone cream and repeat both layers.
Refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
Top with cocoa and serve.

One pot meals: Quick and delicious chicken

Made this easy one pot meal yesterday and it was a hit (I know that, because kids requested the leftovers for their school lunch the next day).

I got two packs of chicken drumsticks from TJs. In my Dutch Oven I browned these all around in some olive oil. Took them out and put in some mirepoix (carrots, onions, celery). After these were softened I deglazed the pan with some red wine and added a cup of chicken stock, spices (salt pepper, bay leave, herbs), some potatoes and the drumsticks.

In the oven, covered, at 375F/190C for 30min. Done with less than 15 minutes spent in the kitchen :)

Spaghetti alla Carbonara

One of my favorite dishes – period. Spaghetti alla Carbonara (the wife of the charcoal burner) has most of the important ingredients/allergens: Pasta, egg, cheese, bacon – and it’s prepared in minutes!

While you cook your pasta (spaghetti or maybe linguine) al dente, put a little olive oil in a pan and cook bacon, 2 minced cloves of garlic, and a little chili flakes over medium heat. Mix 2 eggs with a tbsp of milk and 2 tbsp of the pasta water, salt and pepper. When you tasted the pasta for doneness drain it, but leave a little water in the pot. Add the contents of the pan as well as the egg mixture into the pasta and add your parmesan. Mix well and add parsley, salt, and pepper to taste. Buon appetito!

Stone Soup

For our 10th wedding anniversary my wife had the great idea to take a page out of our kids’ favorite book: Stone Soup
Stone Soup
.
If you don’t know the story: 3 monks come to a village that is very suspicious of them and by pretending to teach them how to make soup from a stone, they get them to bring ingredients to share and the whole village enjoys a great feast. In Russia a similar tale is told (Каша из топора), where a hungry soldier gets food by saying he can make porridge from an axe.

We asked all party guests to bring an ingredient for the soup (only request was no raw meat). It turned out great! I started it off with a pound of mirepoix (2 parts diced onions, 1 part diced carrots & 1 part diced celery) and 3 quarts (liters) of low sodium vegetable broth – only slightly cheating over the stone and water in the story. Our guests brought: Garlic, Portabello Mushrooms, Onions, Carrots, Peas, Zucchini, Rutabaga, fresh Thyme, Oregano, & Rosemary. For the first half of the party, the soup was still vegetarian, all of a sudden there was also chicken sausage and shredded chicken and some crispy bacon on the side, which I have to say went really well with it :)

We had a little cutting station next to the pot to chop stuff and all I did before serving was adding some salt and pepper and tasting it to make sure everything had cooked through all right. It tasted quite delicious and the sense of community was a great addition to celebrating 10 years of marriage!

Pineapple Chicken Curry

Improvised a nice curry for dinner tonight, so no measurements, just inspiration :)

I marinated chicken with curry powder, garlic, salt, pepper, soy sauce and browned it. Next I added a lot of veggies (onions, carrots, red pepper, zucchini, pineapple -fruit, I know). Added chicken stock and coconut milk and seasoned it in the end with some of the pineapple juice, sesame oil, salt, pepper, and a little sugar.

For the rice I used chicken stock, curry powder, salt, and raisins and added a little coconut milk and pineapple juice as well after cooking.

The family liked it as well, except Sarah who doesn’t like raisins in savory food anymore since today ;)

Pull the Pork

Made some awesome pulled pork on Sunday when we had sideways rain all day. Super easy to toss it in the slowcooker (If yours does browning, you don’t even have to use a second pot), while I was making lunch and it was ready for dinner! (No gluten, dairy, or eggs in this ;)

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3-4 lbs boneless pork shoulder, bone-in (if possible)
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup apple vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste

Mix all the spices and rub generously over the pork shoulder. Brown the meat from all sides in a little oil ~5min. Remove the meat, and add the rest of the ingredients and loosen all the brown bits. Add the meat and liquid into your slowcooker and cook on high for 5 hours or on low for about 7.

Now remove the meat and reduce the liquid down to about half (10-15min). Pull the pork apart (mine was so soft, I just had to press it lightly with my fingers), remove any fat and the bone. Taste the cooking liquid, add salt, sugar, vinegar, hot sauce to taste and mix as much with the meat as you like it to be juicy :)

Serve on fresh rolls or corn tortillas with coleslaw. (Coleslaw: Finely cut 1/2 lb green cabbage and mix with salt, pepper, sugar, lemon juice, vinegar, oil, and 2 tbsp mayo/Vegenaise for egg-free)

Enjoy & Guten Appetit! :)

Polenta Cake (gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free)

These came up moist and crumbly. The polenta had quite a bite too it, so I will soften/pre-cook it a little next time.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups gluten-free flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp of xanthan gum or guar gum
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Polenta
  • 3 large free-range organic eggs, alternatively use 3 tbsp of flaxseed meal and 9 tbsp of water
  • 1/2 cup light vegetable or extra light olive oil
  • 1 3/4 cups packed organic light brown sugar
  • 3 very ripe medium bananas, mashed into puree (about 1 cup)
  • 1/3 cup coconut milk, milk, or other non-dairy milk
  • 2 tsp bourbon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F/175C.
  2. Prepare a 10″ x 13″ (25x25cm) baking pan by lining it with greased parchment.
  3. Mix the dry ingredients except the sugar.
  4. If using, mix flaxseed meal and the water and set aside for 5 min.
  5. Mix the wet ingredients with the sugar. Use a hand mixer.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan.
  7. Bake in the center of a preheated oven for 33 minutes, or until done.

    Check the center for doneness with a wooden pick. The cake should appear slightly golden brown at the edge, firm to a light touch.

Zucchini Muffins (gluten-free, dairy-free, and egg-free)

Made these muffins for my kids, when they went to a birthday party without gluten-free birthday cake and we liked them a lot… so much that I couldn’t take a picture before they were all gone ;)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup finely shredded unpeeled zucchini
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp flaxseed meal + 3 tbsp water
  • 3/4 cup Gluten Free All Purpose Flour (e.g. Trader Joe)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 cup chopped raisins

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 175C/350F.
  2. Shred the zucchini and mix it with the tbsp of sugar and let sit in a sieve over a container. The sugar will draw out moisture. You can discard the water.
  3. Mix flaxseed meal with 3 tbsp water and set aside for 5 minutes. (If you like it, you can use an egg instead)
  4. Mix all dry ingredients.
  5. Combine the flaxseed meal mixture and oil; carefully stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.
  6. Fold in the zucchini, walnuts and raisins.
  7. Coat 6 large muffin cups with cooking spray or use paper liners; fill three-fourths full with batter.
  8. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  9. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack.

Pumpkin Soup Recipe

I just got this recipe from my mom and we already cooked the soup 3 times in 2 weeks!

  • In a pressure cooker melt a spoon full of butter and fry a finely chopped onion.
  • Add 400g diced pumpkin and 200g diced carrots.
  • Fill up with a cup of meat stock or vegetable broth, season with 2 tablespoons of curry powder, a bay leave, salt and pepper.
  • Cook about 10min in the pressure cooker (much longer in a regular pot).
  • Remove the bay leave, now mashing everything with a potatoe masher or use a food processor.
  • Add Creme Fraiche or whipped cream.
  • Before serving put some roasted almonds on top and a spoon of sour cream.

Enjoy!

Spicy Slowcooker Goulash

I was very happy with how my slowcooker Gulasch (German spelling) turned out today. Since my wife didn’t want beef, I cooked it quite spicy and shared it with our neighbor ;)

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 lbs beef (London broil), cubed
  • 1 Onion, finely copped
  • 1-x cloves of Garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks of Celery, chopped
  • 2 medium Carrots, chopped
  • 1 can of diced Tomatoes
  • 1/2 can of Tomato Paste
  • 2 Cups of Beef Broth
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp Marjoram
  • 1-x dried Chili, without stems (add all things spicy, like hot-sauce and chili powder as much as you can take)
  • 1 tbsp Paprika
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • Salt & Pepper

Brown Onions, Garlic, Carrots and Celery in some Oil for 5min. Add Beef and brown. Add a little red wine, if you want or just the broth and cook loose the brown bits. Mix the contents of the pan and everything else together in the slowcooker.
Cook on low for 8 hrs. If the sauce is not thick enough at the end, cook it on high for a while.
Serve with Sour Creme and Semmelknödel or Spätzle :)