Archive for the cheese Category

Blog aten’t dead! Four years celebration

Posted in bacon, cheese, vegetables, venison with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 26, 2015 by oskila

All this faffing about with having an actual job or staying at home with the sprogget steals valuable time from food blogging. I’m doing my best to stay above surface, but it’s tricky.

As it turns out, the blog turned four last week, which I noticed, but didn’t find time to post about. We’ll have to do with this week instead.

The trusty local food grocer announced ground venison at a discount and while patty isn’t my middle name, I’m drawn to the opportunity like a feegle to scumble. (Read more Pratchett if you didn’t get the reference).

Venison is typically lean meat, so bacon is always a good addition. A side dish of Feta-gratinated beets also made their way into the picture.

Mix venison with an egg, salt, pepper and possibly a ground up juniper berry or two. Shape into patties and wrap in bacon.

Beetroots boiled until soft, then peeled, sliced and put in a dish. Feta sprinkled. Bake until browned or somesuch. Experimentation with garlic, honey, sunflower seeds or the like is encouraged.hjort

Onwards to another year. I’ll stop promising improvement, but one can hope…

Also, new camera!

Addendum re Lentil Soup and Umami

Posted in cheese, condiments, lentils, soup, vegan, vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 12, 2014 by oskila

Yesterday I hurried to get my first post in months done and forgot to include lots of things in the text. Rather than editing the post I decided to do a new one with some explanation and deeper analysis. Before writing the post on lentil soup I had planned to give suggestions about what else to add and elaborate on veggie umami stuff a bit more.

Lentils, even beluga lentils, aren’t that rich in umami stuff themselves, and may need a helping hand. Stock usually gets the task done, but people are often wary of MSG these days (mostly without reason, since it doesn’t cause migraine, ADD or cancer at all, at least not when used sensibly. Read up on ‘Chinese Food Syndrome’ for more fun facts).

My soup didn’t contain lots of tomato, but it’s high in glutamic acid, another umami agent. Especially sizzled tomato paste or ‘sun dried’ tomatoes are handy tools in this aspect. Even a dollop of ketchup in the right place can enhance many a bland dish.

Onions are another useful umami vegetable as long as you let them cook properly to give off maximum flavor. In the soup I used fried onions because it’s a rather odd thing to do, but also because they’re more thoroughly fried than one would ever bother to do at home and packed with flavor, both from natural umami compounds and from maillard reactions associated with frying. The batter also acts as thickening – it’s funny how things work out sometimes.

Mushrooms are also a classic umami ingredient, but the combination with lentils in soup felt a bit out of place.

Ssamjang, Korean chili paste with garlic and soy beans, has been a trusty companion in the kitchen for several years. The umami content is largely due to fermentation, one of the common methods for getting more umami.

Enough about umami. The other thing I forgot to write at the end of the last post was the suggestion of adding a splash of wine, either red or white, to deepen the flavors in general. Those of a less vegan persuasion can add for example grated cheese, a splash of cream or fish sauce, especially if you’ve made a large batch and are having it for lunch for the fifth day in a row…

I’ve had the images for the next post ready for publication since just after Christmas, but other things got in the way. Hopefully that post will be up soon.

Pea-sto

Posted in cheese, condiments, italian, mediterranean, pasta, peas, vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 12, 2014 by oskila

ärtpesto

 

Funny punny title, yes. What it means is that today’s food is pesto made with peas instead of basil. And it’s real easy too.

2 parts green peas (fresh or defrosted)
1 part oil
1 part whatever kind of nuts or seeds you like
1 part grated parmesan cheese or similar.
garlic
salt
pepper

Mix all the stuff and blend it to desired texture. Adjust thickness with oil and cheese or more peas. I use a hand blender and get it ready in almost no time at all. The pesto in the picture has more cheese and peas instead of nuts since the pine nuts were way too expensive and my wife dislike sunflower seeds and is allergic to most proper nuts. It works beautifully with for example pasta anyway.

Summer Memories: Skirt Steak and Halloumi

Posted in beef, cheese, condiments, mushroom with tags , , , , , , , on October 2, 2013 by oskila

Working through the backlog some more. Another dinner which involves barbecue activities, but this time it’s about the (in Sweden) elusive skirt steak or bavette as the french call it. Used to be cheap, but now it’s fashionable and in demand.

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Yours truly, monitoring the skirt steak and mushrooms, in yet another photographic appearance. I normally barbecue stuff with indirect heat and the lid on, but my dear wife whipped out the phone camera when the lid was off.

Meat was bought sligthly brined, but otherwise only seasoned with salt and pepper. Mushrooms were gradually smothered in home made dry rub.

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Mushrooms, skirt steak and halloumi. We were apparently hungry enough to forget to snap a shot of  a plate.  I assume we also had potatoes and sauce bearnaise or similar.

2 Courgette 4 Egg Omelet

Posted in cheese, discount, eggs, mediterranean, squash, vegetarian, zucchini with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 15, 2013 by oskila

According to Wikipedia, zucchini is the most common used name in Scandinavia for the vegetable in other places more commonly known by its french name courgette. I might have old data, but I think the most widespread name in Sweden at least, is simply squash (probably since we didn’t know about any other squashes for very long and until fairly recently)

I’m only bringing this up since I’m using them in food today. The common green zucchini and the slightly less common golden zucchini. Both were bought fairly cheap and then sort of forgotten in the fridge. Since it’s very unnecessary to let food go bad I needed to make use of them quickly and decided on a Spanish tortilla-like apparition, but with zucchini instead of potatoes.

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Grated zucchinis in a pan, with some oil and salt. A chopped onion was added some time later. Since zucchini is mostly water, it tends to get soggy with cooking, and unless some of the moisture is removed, that sogginess is democratically spread through the whole dish. Leave them in the pan for quite some time to get a proper sear and allow some water to steam away.

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Once that was done I added some seasoning (white pepper, garlic, chili flakes, thyme) and then four lightly beaten eggs and a cup of grated Raclette cheese that happened to be lying around (and at least texture-wise, it’s not entirely unlike the Spanish Manchego). Once that’s taken care of one can choose either to fry fairly quick and flip the whole thing over, or fry it on lower heat and on only one side.

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I decided on a one-sided fry and then a bit of salad.

Moussaka, sort of.

Posted in cheese, discount, eggplant, ground pork, mediterranean, zucchini with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 26, 2013 by oskila

Minced pork, button mushrooms and fresh garlic at great discounts and the refrigerator runneth over with eggplant and half-zucchinis (OK, one of each, but you get the idea). In my book that spells moussaka or something pretty similar.

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Fresh onions and garlic and a bag of shrooms.

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Frying stuff. Also making sure the seasoning has a rather strong Mediterranean feel to it.

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Slicing eggplant lengthways with the assistance of a Scandinavian cheese-slicer. Other similar tools are probably just as good. I had a nagging feeling that eggplant and zucchini often are pre-cooked in some fashion to reduce the liquid content, but didn’t bother to (which resulted in a very wet final product. Be warned!)

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Since I’ve written papers concerning both digital imaging and how the hiker should dress, I’m pretty good at working with layers. A lasagna-like structure, but without the béchamel.

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Putting a cheese sauce on top. Should have had more and thicker sauce (in conjunction with dryer sliced veg) for the best result.

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After a bit of oven time dinner is ready (but somewhat wet)

 

Shrimp Soup and Pão de Queijo

Posted in brazilian, bread, cheese, leeks, potato, shellfish, soup, stock, vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 5, 2013 by oskila

We were invited to a potluck dinner on Easter Monday and my mother had kindly donated a pound of shrimps, which, combined with the shellfish stock made last Easter provided a good base for a most excellent soup.

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Leeks and carrots to begin with, along with some potatoes to give a bit of body.

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The haphazardly shelled shrimp keeping the defrosting stock company.

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Stock, water, shrimp and seasoning added. Classic bisque recipes call for brandy and/or sherry, but I don’t keep those in the house. Nothing wrong with a bit of white wine though.

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Ten minutes of blending and a pint of cream later the soup is done, if a bit on the lumpy side. For a proper bisque the shrimp shells would have been along for the whole ride, but one doesn’t want to attempt a smooth creamy soup with shells and only a hand blender.

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This has to be the most horrible phone pic I’ve ever voluntarily put on the web. It’s a plate of soup accompanied by a pão de queijo (Brazilian cheese bread) which we also made. The process mostly involves stirring tapioca starch into liquids and adding cheese, so I’m skipping that part. There are a lot of fine recipes online though, so try it! If you’re in a country where tapioca flour isn’t readily available in most supermarkets (such as Sweden) try the Asian grocery stores.

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