Simple Butter Cookies with Chopped Almond !

“But I don’t want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.
“Oh, you can’t help that,” said the Cat: “we’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.”
“How do you know I’m mad?” said Alice.
“You must be,” said the Cat, “or you wouldn’t have come here.”

Lewis Carroll

Ingredients:
– 110g all-purpose flour
– 50g butter
– 40-50g sugar
– 50g chopped almond
– 1 small egg

Method:

1 Pre-heat the oven to 190C
2 Chop almond to 0.2-0.5cm pieces (I used pre-chopped 1cm x 0.3cm almond stripes from the shop) – this is important to chop almonds not too finely to make crusty cookies 🙂
3 Mix flour, sugar and grated butter until smooth
4 Add an egg and chopped almonds: mix well
5 Form cookies out of the dough and put on the baking paper: bake 15 min at 190C
6 Serve with a cup of black coffee and have a wonderful Sunday !

Cabbage Rolls with Minced Beef: tasty and healthy lunch

…nothing could be more pleasant than to live in solitude, enjoy the spectacle of nature, and occasionally read some book…

Nikolai Gogol

Ingredients (for 12 cabbage rolls):
– 1 pointed head cabbage (it is more tender for this recipe than white cabbage)
– 4oog minced beef
– 120g rice
– 1 red onion
– 250g mashed tomatoes (tomato passata) 🍅
– 1.5 tsp salt
– 0.5 tsp black pepper
– 200g sour cream for serving

Directions:

1 Boil rice until ready
2 Carefully separate cabbage leaves and boil them for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a plate to cool down
3 Chop onion
4 Mix minced beef with boiled rice, chopped onion, salt and black pepper
5 Put 1-2 tbsp beef mixture on one cabbage leave and pack into a roll 🙂
6 Put cabbage rolls side to side in the saucepan and cover with water 1-2 cm above, then add mashed tomatoes: I cooked in 2 saucepans with 125g mashed tomatoes in each
7 Boil cabbage rolls for 30-35 minutes covered with a lid
8 Serve cabbage rolls with cooking broth, sour cream and chopped parsley!

Pancakes with Apple Rings or Racuchy z jabłkami !

Spring was moving in the air above and in the earth below and around him, penetrating even his dark and lowly little house with its spirit of divine discontent and longing.

Kenneth Grahame
Racuchy z jabłkami

Ingredients (for 20 pancakes):
– 2 eggs
– 1 cup (200ml) milk
– 250g flour
– 1/2 tsp baking soda + 1/2 tsp vinegar
– 8g Vanilla sugar
– 1/2 tsp salt
– 4 apples
– sunflower oil for frying
– powdered sugar or jam or honey for serving

Directions:

1 Apples
1.1 Wash apples and remove the apples core carefully with a knife: first from the top, then from the bottom and then the remaining hard parts in the middle keeping the apple unbroken
1.2 Cut apples in 0.8-1cm width rings
2 Batter
2.1 Whisk eggs with milk, then add flour & sugar & salt: mix well until smooth
2.2 Add baking soda and vinegar in the same teaspoon to the batter and mix
3 Pancakes
3.1 Preheat two skillets with sunflower oil: it’s quicker to cook with 2 skillets!
3.2 For each pancake soak the apple ring well in a batter and put on the skillet: fry each side until golden for 2-3 minutes
3.3 Since there is little sugar in the pancakes, serve them with powdered sugar or honey or marmalade!
4 Enjoy!

Tarte Flambée Feta-Olive !

Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corncribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us.

Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

Dough ingredients:
– 220g wheat flour
– 1 egg yolk
– 2 tablespoons olive oil
– 100ml warm water
– 1 pinch salt

Filling ingredients:
– 200g sour cream
– 2 small red onions
– 150g Feta cheese
– 100g black olives
– black pepper

Directions:

1 Preheat the oven to 220C
2 Mix dough ingredients and knead the dough for 5 minutes
3 Roll out the dough into a 3mm height oval
4 Put the dough on the baking paper: bake at 220C for 8 minutes without a filling
5 Meanwhile chop red onions, feta cheese and olives
6 Remove the baking tray from the oven, spread the sour cream over the baked dough, then chopped onion, chopped feta cheese and finally chopped olives
7 Bake Tarte Flambée for another 10 minutes at 220C
8 Sprinkle with black pepper and serve 🙂

Quick and delicious Tomato-Onion-Mozzarella and Garlic Toasts !

It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn’t use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like “What about lunch?”

A. A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
Tomato, mozzarella and garlic toasts

Ingredients (for 4 toasts):
– 4 rye or potato bread slices
– 100g Mozarella
– 1 tomato
– half a small red onion
– 2 garlic cloves
– 1-2 tbsp olive oil
– salt & pepper

Directions:

1 Preheat the oven to 200C
2 Peel, wash and chop garlic
3 Peel, wash and slice red onion in 3-5mm width slices
4 Slice tomato and mozzarella in 6-8mm width slices
5 Put bread slices on the baking paper
6 Distribute chopped garlic evenly on the bread slices
7 Sprinkle olive oil on the bread slices evenly
8 Put onion slices on the bread slices over the chopped garlic
10 Put tomato slices over the onions slices, sprinkle black pepper and salt!
11 Finally put mozzarella slices over the tomato slices
12 Bake the toasts 10-14 minutes at 200C, serve hot 🙂

Crumble Apple Cake with Walnuts !

The cup of tea on arrival at a country house is a thing which, as a rule, I particularly enjoy. I like the crackling logs, the shaded lights, the scent of buttered toast, the general atmosphere of leisured cosiness.

P.G. Wodehouse
Crumble Apple Cake with Walnuts

Dough ingredients:
– 400g flour
– 250g butter
– 2tbsp sugar
– 2 packets (each 8g) Vanilla sugar
– 1 egg
– 1/2tsp baking soda + 1/2tsp vinegar

Filling ingredients:
– 5 medium apples
– 100g chopped walnuts
– 3tbsp sugar

Method:

1 Dough
1.1 Combine flour, sugar, vanilla sugar and add chopped butter: mix to crumbles
1.2 Add baking soda + vinegar in the same teaspoon and mix in to flour&sugar&butter
1.3 Add an egg and knead the dough
2 Filling
2.1 Wash, peel and grate apples
2.2 Wash, dry and chop walnuts
2.3 Combine grates apples, chopped walnuts and sugar: carefully mix
3 Cake
3.1 Preheat the oven to 190C
3.2 Separate the dough into 2 equal parts
3.3 Put the first of dough into 28cm diameter buttered baking form and flatten
3.4 Distribute the filling over the dough equally
3.5 Grate the remaining part of dough over the filling 🙂
3.6 Bake 35-40 minutes at 190C
3.7 Let the cake cool down and sprinkle with sugar powder
3.8 Enjoy the cake one Sunday morning with your favourite detective movie and a cup of strong black coffee !

Chicken Strips with Polenta Crust !

Youth is happy because it has the capacity to see beauty. Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.

F. Kafka
Chicken strips with polenta crust

Ingredients (2-3 portions):
– 2 chicken breasts
– 100ml yoghurt
– 100g cornmeal
– olive oil (if frying on the skillet)
– 1tsp salt & 1/2tsp black pepper

Serving ingredients:
– 4 lemon slices
– 200g sour cream
– a few sprigs of scallion

Method:

1 Wash chicken breasts and cut in 1cm width and 0.5cm height stripes
2 Marinate chicken stripes in yoghurt for 2 hours with some salt & pepper
3 Preheat non-sticking skillet with some olive oil or pre-heat the oven at 190C
4 Dip each chicken strip in cornmeal and put on the skillet
5 Fry chicken strips for 5-8 minutes each side until golden or, for a more healthy option, bake the chicken stripes without oil for 20 minutes at 190C
6 Serve with lemon, sour cream and chopped scallion! 🙂