March 30, 2012

Prepared for Earl Grey afternoon tea


I am prepared for this afternoon event, where I will meet up with some good friends in Horsens and drink afternoon tea with focus on Earl Grey.

It is my responsibility to bring all the Earl Grey teas from my kitchen, so here in the basket you can see:

  • Earl Grey with flower from Kusmi
  • Anastasia - Russian blend of China and Ceylon teas with scents of bergamot, lemon, lime and orange blossom from Kusmi
  • Earl Grey Polish blend No 18 - Blend of China and Ceylon teas with scents of bergamot, lemon and lime from Kusmi
  • Bouquet of Flowers No 108 - Russian blend of China, Ceylon and India teas with scents of bergamot, lemon, lime, orange, mandarin and flowers from Kusmi
  • Troika - Russian blend of China, Ceylon and India teas with scents of bergamot, orange and mandarin from Kusmi
Besides from the Earl Greys I am also bringing Earl Grey gele and bergamot-orange jam for the tea table.

Yes, I and my stomach are so ready for this afternoon of drinking several pots of tea and eating home-made tea treats - uuuhmmm


March 23, 2012

Scones with Blue cheese and walnuts


I am having another go at the blog event called "Tea Time Treats", which is a monthly baking challenge event managed by Karen from Lavender and Lovage and Kate from What Kate Baked. It is Karen from Lavender and Lovagewhich is the host or perhaps I should prefer to "being mother" for the tea table for March month. The theme for March is SCONES either being sweet or savoury. You can read more here: http://www.lavenderandlovage.com/2012/03/the-new-tea-time-treats-challenge-for-march-scones-savoury-and-sweet.html



Looking into the many different types of possible scones in the cake book called "A piece of cake" by Leila Lindholm, I got so inspired, that I decided to make both a SWEET version in form of spicy scones with dried fruits as well as SAVOURY version. 


As the savoury version I had three different options in mind:
  • Blue cheese and walnut
  • Emmental cheese and red onion
  • Olives and pine kernels
Being un-certained about this version to make, I placed the decision in your capable hands through a vote on my blog. And it turned out to be a relative close vote:

  • Blue cheese and walnut = 5 votes
  • Emmental cheese and red onion = 3 votes
  • Olives and pine kernels = 3 votes

Thank you very much to those of you participating in this vote :-)

Below you can see, my modified version of scones with Blue cheese and walnuts.

Scones with Blue cheese and walnuts: - 12 pieces

  • 375 g cake flour
  • 75 g rye flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 50 g sugar
  • 125 g cold butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2 dl milk
  • 100 g Blue cheese - in small pieces
  • 100 g walnuts - roughly minced
  1. Heat the oven (conventional) to 250'C.
  2. Mix the flours, salt, baking powder and sugar together in a mixing bowl.
  3. Cut the cold butter into small pieces.
  4. Grind the butter pieces into the flour mix.
  5. Add the milk and egg without kneading it a dough.
  6. Add the Blue cheese and walnuts, again without kneading it too much.
  7. Place the dough on a pieces of baking paper.
  8. Flatten the dough into a height of 3 cm.
  9. Use a glass to cut out scone pieces or place the dough into heart shape silicone form.
  10. Bake the scone at 250'C for 10-15 minutes.





March 22, 2012

Easter trees in my garden


Using my extended week-end trip to Germany as inspiration I decided to decorate an apple tree (in my garden) as well as two tree hydrangeas (in my front garden) yesterday afternoon, as the sun was shining from a high blue sky.

It is the very first time for me making this kind of Easter decoration in my garden. So perhaps I should regard myself as a trend setter for the local neighbourhood or could it be, that first mover is a better word to use ?

While I was busy decorating my garden for Easter, Hannibal the Cat was keeping himself close by in case, these plastic Easter eggs would break and turned out to be real eggs. Raw egg is some of Hannibal the Cat´s  favourite food.

Have you decorate for Easter yet ? And are you as well decorating your garden for Easter ?

German Easter tree

Hannibal the Cat looking out into his reverie

Hannibal the Cat testing, if the tree should taste like mouse meat




March 21, 2012

Extended week-end to Germany


Luxury private labels within food from REWE

German cream yogurt - uuuhmmm

Birthday cake decoration and poppy seed filling for cake
This week-end I was on an extended week-end to Germany together with my mother. And as usual a trip to Germany ALWAYS involved some serious food shopping. Either because the price level is lower in Germany or simply because you can not some of these food types in Denmark.

As usual we went to REWE (German supermarket chain), which have their own private label of luxury food at reasonable price level. This time I got fresh pasta, pasta sauce and chips with mustard taste.

To fill my need for some eatable yogurt I again got some cream yogurt with a serious fat content !!!!, which just taste PERFECT.

Within the baking area I found decoration for a up-coming birthday cake and a bake filling for a cake based on poppy seeds. I have a good work colleague, which has lived in Germany, and she has an addiction for cakes with poppy seeds, so I think I will test this filling on her.

And in case I get no Easter Eggs for the upcoming Easter, I got a little collection of Easter Eggs for myself.

German Easter egg for myself

Mistletoe with tree
Our first stop-over we had at an inn located in an old monastery mill (www.klostermuehle-bursfelde.de), which is situated in the upper area of the Weser River. The food is excellent and the Sunday Brunch is a big meal on it´s own.
Many of the tree in the neighbourhood are covered with mistletoe, which keeps re-minding me about, that I would like very much to have my very own mistletoe in my own little garden. However, I am uncertain, which type of tree will be a perfect host for mistletoe.



Basilica in Bursefelde at Weser River, Germany

Fürstenberger style of toilet lady

Fürstenberger style of toilet man

Germany style Easter tree


In Germany you will find, that people decorate tree or bushes in their garden with different type of eggs in the time up to Easter. I really like this tradition, so therefore I found some Easter Egg for my own garden. I will share the outcome of my Easter  decoration capabilities in the near future.

And finally we saw the blue-lilac coloured wonderful carpet of crocus in the park surrounding Husum Castle. I can only recommend you to visit this park, it is such a beautiful sighing. You can read more about these crocus of Husum here: www.husum-tourismus.de/husumer-krokusbluete. It turned out to be a perfect timing to come on a normal week day, so we did not have to walk in one big bunch of people all doing the same thing.
And the amount of crocus is overwhelming, you see crocus in all direction. Can you imaging to have such a blanket/carpet of crocus in your very own garden ? And the other thing popping into my mind, how to get hold of these Husum crocus for your private garden  in legal way (= without digging up these crocus in park without any permission) ?

My own grass lawn is closer to the look of the little park located in the city centre of Frederichstadt, well with fewer crocus. I will post a picture of my crocus in the lawn in the near coming future.


Crocus and Hollanders style of houses in Frederichstadt

"Blanket/carpet" of Husum crocus

Husum Castle with crocus in front

March 20, 2012

Amarena Cherry Sparkling Drink


On my glass of Amarena Fabbri cherries I found a small recipe collection, which this drink is part of. The entire drink is having a good balance between sweetness and freshness. And the cherry juice is adding an elegant touch to the flavour profile. And at the very end, you can enjoy the wonderful Amarena Fabbri cherry :-)

So if you are Champagne (sparkling wine) lady like I, you should try out this drink !!!


Amarena Cherry Sparkling Drink: - 1 cocktail
  • 1 Amarena Fabbri cherry
  • 1 teaspoon Amarena Fabbri Cherry juice
  • Sparkling wine
  1. Fill the champagne glass with the Amarena Fabbri Cherry and Amarena Fabbri Cherry juice.
  2. Fill the glass the sparkling wine
  3. CHEERS :-)


March 18, 2012

Product test 7 - Urtekram dinner kit Thai nudles



I have been taking another step towards the finishing line trying the entire range of dinner kits from Urtekram, the first being whole grain lasagna, the second being chicken with cinnamon and curry and the third being Morocco dinner kit .

The fourth and final box tested in my kitchen is a mild Thai wok dish, again made with chicken. This time I made a reduction in the cooking time of 5 minutes to maintain of a bit in the vegetable. Another 5 minutes reduction for the cooking time with the vegetables would have been even better in my opinion.


The Thai dish is the best tasting of the four different dinner kits, but again the taste is too mild for my expectation to the Thai kitchen. A more rich taste/flavour, perhaps combined with coconut milk, would have been a way of fulfilling my idea about the Thai kitchen.

And asking the usual question of mine, would I have paid full price for this Thai meal dinner kit ? And yet again my answer would have to be NO.

March 17, 2012

Saffron Buns



Saffron is one of my favourite spices. Opening the container with the saffron starts this "golden journey" :-) When I was kneading this bun dough together, I could not help myself from time to time to nip a small portion of this dough and eat it raw. The next step in this "golden journey" is the baking process, where your house with being filled up with a wonderful flavour of saffron. And the final step in this "golden journey", which when you eat very single bite of these buns.

The basic bun recipe, I have found in the cake book called "a piece of cake" by Leila Lindholm: And this only adjustment is, that I have replaced cardamon with saffron. 

Saffron buns - 16-18 buns
  • ½-1 g saffron
  • 300 g milk
  • 10 g yeast 
  • 150 g sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 150 g butter - soft
  • 1 egg
  • 700-725 g wheat flour
  • 1 egg for glazing 
  1. Heat the milk to max. 37'C.
  2. Stir the yeast into the milk. 
  3. Add sugar, saffron, salt and egg into the milk mix.
  4. Add the flour into the milk mix.
  5. Knead the dough for a short time.
  6. Cut the butter into small pieces.
  7. Add the butter into the dough.
  8. Knead the dough and butter together. I usually knead for 10 minutes.
  9. Let the dough raise for 45-60 minutes.
  10. De-gas the dough and divide it into 16-18 buns - I use a scale for this part of the process
  11. Place the buns on the oven tray, covered with baking paper
  12. Let the bun raise again for 45-60 minutes.
  13. Heat the oven (conventional) to 200'C.
  14. Place the bun in the lower part of the oven.
  15. Let the buns bake for 20-25 minutes.

March 16, 2012

Spicy Scones with dried fruits


I am having another go at the blog event called "Tea Time Treats", which is a monthly baking challenge event managed by Karen from Lavender and Lovage and Kate from What Kate Baked. It is Karen from Lavender and Lovagewhich is the host or perhaps I should prefer to "being mother" for the tea table for March month. The theme for March is SCONES either being sweet or savoury. You can read more here: http://www.lavenderandlovage.com/2012/03/the-new-tea-time-treats-challenge-for-march-scones-savoury-and-sweet.html


For the tea table in February I also baked scones in form of these Valentine romance scones. However, I noticed many recipes on scones in the cake book called "a piece of cake" by Leila Lindholm, so as SWEET SCONES I took the decision to make Spicy Scones with dried fruits, which is very similar to one of the scones recipe from this cake book.
I decided to use a mix of corinths, orange peel and sucat instead of only corints, as I still had some orange peel and sucat leftovers from Christmas. The combination of cinnamon and ginger will really bring you back to Christmas or perhaps forward to the coming Christmas.

As the theme mentions SAVOURY SCONES as options as well, I have decided, that I will as well make a savoury version for this month´s tea table. And in this connection I need your help, so here you can vote and thereby select this flavour/taste combination I should. You can choose between three different options. 

Spicy Scones with dried fruits: - 12 pieces
  • 450 g cake flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 50 g sugar
  • 125 g cold butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2 dl milk
  • 2 tea spoon cinnamon
  • 1 tea spoon ginger
  • 50 g corinths
  • 50 g orange peel
  • 50 g sucat
  1. Heat the oven (conventional) to 250'C.
  2. Heat the milk together with cinnamon, ginger and the dried fruit.
  3. Mix the flour, salt, baking powder and sugar together in a mixing bowl.
  4. Cut the cold butter into small pieces.
  5. Grind the butter pieces into the flour mix.
  6. Add the milk and egg without kneading it a dough.
  7. Place the dough on a pieces of baking paper.
  8. Flatten the dough into a height of 3 cm.
  9. Use a glass to cut out scone pieces or place the dough into heart shape silicone form.
  10. Bake the scone at 250'C for 10-15 minutes.


March 14, 2012

Abrikos brød (Apricot Bread) from "Hjemmebagt"



"Hjemmebagt" - 73 recipes - 16 accomplished = 57 recipes to bake

I am really making progress right now on my task of baking every single recipe in the bread book called "Hjemmebagt".

This time it is the bread containing apricot, which I have been baking. The unusual part of this bread is, that is placed in-side a form called Römertopf for the final raising followed by baking the bread as well in this form. And the lid is placed on the form for the entire baking process.

The use of apricot is giving a nice flavour to the bread, but it is not being over-sweet in taste from this use of apricot.

March 13, 2012

Lavendel brød (Lavender bread) from "Hjemmebagt"





"Hjemmebagt" - 73 recipes - 15 accomplished = 58 recipes to bake

I used the opportunity of progressing on my task of baking my way through the bread book called "Hjemmebagt", when I had some fellow rower over for "Silver Ore" lunch in the week-end.

As I had all the ingredients needed to this Lavender Bread available in my kitchen cupboards, I decided to bake this bread.  The bread is made from a mix of fine and whole grain spelt flour mixed together with honey (I used lavender honey - off cause) and lavender flowers. It was a wonderful flavour of lavender, not being a soapy at all, so the amount of lavender, 1 tea spoon for 500 g flour, is just perfect.

The tricky thing, when using raising baskets, is actually to use flour, so you can remove the bread after the raising without destroyed the shape of the bread. As you can see from the picture above, I should have used more flour for dusting for the raising basket.

As I always are having heat on the floor in the bath room including in-side the shower, I normally place the bread doughs here for the warm raising part. And as you can see from the picture below, the warm floor in the shower is one of favourite spots of Hannibal the Cat.




March 12, 2012

I need your help for Tea Time Treat tea table monthly challenge



I am planning to participate again in the Tea Time Treats for March 2012, where the tea table should be filled with scones, both savoury and sweet version. Right here and now I already have baked and tasted the sweet version of these scones.

However, I need your help selecting, which type of savoury scones I should bake for the March tea table. Should it be blue cheese with walnuts, Emmental cheese with red onions or olives with pine kernels ? So please help me making this decision by participating in the on-going vote on my blog.

Lønnestræde´s Olive Bread

Lønnestræde´s Olive Bread

As I had some black olives as surplus, I decided to create my own version of a olive bread using black olive and olive oil combined with recipe on a "basic bread" from my bread book "Hjemmebagt". I think it turned out to be a very good. almost perfect combination.

Hannibal the Cat checking the dough pot for any leftovers
When I started to work with the dough after night resting, Hannibal the Cat turned into a "bread dough monster", jumping on to the kitchen table, licking the table from any leftovers of dough followed by rolling his entire body on the kitchen table. He is a strange cat !!!!

Lønnestræde´s Olive Bread:

  • 500 g wheat flour
  • 350 g water
  • 10 g yeast (cold resting) otherwise 20 g
  • 10 g salt
  • 30 (black) olives - stone removed and minced
  • Hannibal the Cat looking for leftovers of the dough
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  1. Grate the yeast into the flour.
  2. Add salt, water and olive oil to the flour.
  3. Knead the dough well - I knead for 10 minutes.
  4. After kneading add the minced olives into the dough.
  5. Let the dough rest nigth over or for 1 hours at room temperature.
  6. De-gas the dough.
  7. Let the dough rest at room temperature for 1 hour, if it has been night over resting.
  8. Add plenty of flour into a raising basket.
  9. Place the dough in the raising basket and let in raise at room temperature for 45 minutes.
  10. Heat the oven to 250'C.
  11. Place the dough on a baking tray covered with baking paper, turning the raising basket up-side-down.
  12. Place the dough in the lower part of the oven - turn down the temperature to 210'C (conventional oven).
  13. Let the bread bake for 25-30 minutes.
  14. Let the bread cool down.
Hannibal the Cat resting on warm floor in the shower together with the doughs

March 11, 2012

"Silver Ore" lunch for rowers





As a "thank you" to my fellow rowers for rowing together with me last year, so I managed to cross the required 1000 km for a "Silver Ore" (actual I rowed this very magic number of 1.111 km in 2011), I decided to invite the rowers, who have spend most time together with me in the rowing boat, for lunch today.

In order to make it "easy" for myself, I got my local "cheese pusher" (Osteriet) for make both a cheese as well as sausages selection, so I only had to bake some bread. My "cheese pusher" actually want to sell me some nice bake-off bread together with the cheese and sausages, but here I "stood firm", so I could continue on my task of baking my way through the bread book "Hjemmebagt".

As the individual bread were relative small, only 500 g flour per dough, I decided to bake 3 different types of bread. You are always very uncertain, will 2 breads be enough or not, so not to place myself in the situation with too little bread, I took the decision of baking 3 breads.

Two breads from the bread-book (Lavender Bread and Apricot Bread) and my very oven creation of an olive bread. I will share this recipe with in a few days.

Have a look at these wonderful hostess gifts, which I received from my fellow rowers, something for use in both my garden and kitchen. I think, they know me to well from all these hours spend in each other company on open water.






March 10, 2012

Marzipan cake with Amarena cherries



I saw a recipe on some marzipan cake containing Amarena Fabbri cherries in a weekly magazine. I decided not to follow this magazine recipe, but it worked as inspiration for me working from this recipe on marzipan orange cakes. However, I decided to reduce the sugar amount to get some marzipan cakes, which would be less sweet, as the Amarena Fabbri cherries also are bringing sweetness to these marzipan cakes.

As I still had some cocoa marzipan left in my kitchen cupboard from Christmas, I decided to use up from an end, as my mother is calling it. Using cocoa marzipan means, that you are not getting the colour difference between the marzipan and the cherries, as you would have using plain/normal marzipan.

Using cocoa marzipan for these marzipan cakes also give them a look of meat balls, as one of my colleagues said, when she saw them yesterday at work.


Marzipan with Amarena Fabbri cherries: 20-25 pieces

  • 400 g (cocoa) marzipan
  • 120 icing sugar
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tablespoon Amarena Fabbri cherry juice
  • 20-25 Amarena Fabbri cherries
  1. Heat the oven to 200'C
  2. Knead all the ingredients together with your hands.
  3. Cover one Amarena Fabbri cherry with the marzipan mass.
  4. Place the marzipan mass on baking paper as small tops. I never use silicone baking paper, when I am baking marzipan, as it quiet tricky to get the marzipan off after baking.
  5. Bake in the middle of the oven at 200'C for 15-20 minutes.

Hannibal the Cat and the washing machine

When Hannibal the Cat was a small kitten I had to ensure, that he was not in-side the washing machine, before I started it. My cat had always been very fascinated by a washing machine, when it is washing. I assume the movement of clothes some how is like chasing a mouse.

Yesterday evening Hannibal the Cat again became activated to chase a washing washing machine.

Remember to put sound on, so you can hear the sound of cat feets attacking the washing machine.

video
video
video

March 09, 2012

Filling my suitcase with French cheese, butter and yogurt


Even for a one night business trip to France I will always bring my large suitcase with me. On the flight to France the suitcase will have a weight of 6-7 kg, whereas on the return flight it will be weighting 20-21 kg !!!!

This big increase in suitcase weight is coming from the fact, that I every time will find a supermarket, where I can shop amok in cheese, cheese, yet some more cheese, yogurt, dried sausages and herbs & spices.

The picture above is from my latest business trip / supermarket expedition to France.


March 08, 2012

New Marimekko stuff for my kitchen



When I am on business trips to Finland, my Finnish sales colleague always ensure, that a "pit stop" is included, when we drive from the first customer to the second customer. This "pit stop" takes place at the Marimekko outlet shop in the Helsinki area.

This time plenty of Marimekko thing found it´s way into my suitcase and later on into my kitchen. I got an apron, table cloth, napkins, tea cup and a tulip-sharped cookie cutter. And all these items were brought with a discount :-)

Besides from various Marimekko stuff, I as usual, was filling my suitcase up with as well tooth paste containing xylitol, which has an excellent effect on preventing tooth decay, chewing gum based on 100% xylitol and Salmiakki chocolate, milk chocolate with liquorice liquid filling, to ensure, that the xylitol will have something to work for.

March 05, 2012

Raisin "snail" with cinnamon






I receive a "wish" this week, when I was travelling together with a French colleague in France. She had heard from our joint French colleague working in Denmark, that we were ALWAYS eating cake at work, actually home-made cake !!!! This is quiet a statement !!!!! And she would really  like to taste home-made cake, next time she was in Denmark in connection with work.

French raisin snail from Paul
Therefore I have decided to bake something for her, as we are having some meetings in the beginning of the coming week. It will not be a cake, but a raisin snail with cinnamon, which is a sweet bun type. I a BIG fan of the French version of raisin "snail", and I actually have found a Danish version of these snails in the cooking book "Meyers Brød" by Claus Meyer, but my baking capabilities at present is not up to this demanding task of making Danish pastry, yet ! So therefore I mixing two recipes together creating these raisin "snails" in a bun version. The bun part is coming from "A piece of cake", while I have "Meyer Brød" as inspiration for the filling




Raisin "snails" with cinnamon: - 18-20 pieces

  • ½ tablespoon cardamon
  • 300 g milk
  • 10 g yeast 
  • 150 g sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 150 g butter - soft
  • 1 egg
  • 675 g wheat flour
  • 125 g brown sugar
  • 125 g butter - soft
  • 10 g golden syrup
  • 10 g cinnamon
  • 75 g raisins
  • 1 egg for glazing 
  1. Heat the milk to max. 37'C.
  2. Add the cardamon to the milk.
  3. Stir the yeast into the milk. 10 g yeast for cold resting or 50 g yeast for warm resting.
  4. Add sugar, salt and egg into the milk mix.
  5. Add the flour into the milk mix.
  6. Knead the dough for a short time.
  7. Cut the butter into small pieces.
  8. Add the butter into the dough.
  9. Knead the dough and butter together. I usually knead for 10 minutes.
  10. Let the dough raise.
  11. Mix the soft, brown sugar, cinnamon and golden syrup together.
  12. Divide the dough into two parts.
  13. Roll the dough out, until to the height is 1 cm height.
  14. Spread half of the sugar-butter on top of the dough.
  15. Spread raisins on top.
  16. Roll the dough into a roll.
  17. Slice the roll into pieces, which is 3-4 cm.
  18. Place these slices into muffin form, so the butter is under control during the baking process.
  19. Let the raisin snails raise warm for 60 minutes.
  20. Heat the oven (conventional) to 200'C.
  21. Place the snails in the lower part of the oven.
  22. Let the snails bake for 20-25 minutes.

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