The series of recipes from our trip to Sardinia has not ended yet. One of the goodies I brought home with me, was a bag of dried myrtle berries. I did not only use them to make wild boar with … Continue reading Mirto (Sardinian Myrtle Berry Liqueur)
White sauce is known as béchamel in France or besciamella in Italy and is an important basic sauce that is used in many dishes like lasagna. White sauce is made using only three ingredients: milk, butter, and flour. Most recipes … Continue reading How To Make White Sauce The Easy Way (Béchamel / Besciamella)
Fish fillets, such as European sea bass (also known by the Italian name branzino or the French name loup de mer) or sea bream (also known by the Italian orata or the French daurade) are great when cooked on the … Continue reading How To Cook Fish Fillets On The Skin
Spain is very proud of its jamón iberico, and rightly so. The cured ham is made from a special breed of pig (known simply as iberico in Spain, but abroad often called pata negra because of the black hooves) and … Continue reading Croquetas de Jamón (Iberico Ham Croquettes)
During our trip to Spain last fall we gorged ourselves on researched many different types of tapas. One very popular kind of tapas that you see everywhere is croquettes with various fillings. They are crispy on the outside and creamy … Continue reading Croquetas de Setas (Mushroom Croquettes)
Next to paella, tortilla española or tortilla de patatas is one of the most famous national dishes of Spain. It can be found on restaurant menus, but it is also served as tapas. Patatas means potatoes, and that about sums it … Continue reading Tortilla de Patatas o Tortilla Española (Spanish Potato Omelette)
Beurre noisette, literally hazelnut butter, is often used in French cooking and baking, and it is therefore good to know how to make it. The hazelnut doesn’t only refer to the color, but also to the nutty smell and taste … Continue reading How To Make Beurre Noisette (Brown Butter)
As promised in my review of sous-vide equipment, I’m going to write more about sous-vide techniques. This is the first post in a series, that will be in the new categorie “Sous-Vide tips & tricks“. In cooking we often strive to … Continue reading Post Sous-Vide Searing by Deep Frying
Doesn’t this cherry ricotta tartlet look great? It is not only as delicious as it looks, it is also very easy to make and does not require any baking (or any baking skills for that matter). So you don’t have … Continue reading No-Bake Cherry Ricotta Amaretti Tartlets
Béarnaise is one of the classic sauces from French cuisine and it is great with steak. The traditional way of preparing it au bain marie requires quite a bit of skill, as the sauces curdles easily. It also requires you to make … Continue reading Easy Foolproof Béarnaise Sauce
My favorite kind of chiles are chipotles because of their smokiness. Chipotles in adobo sauce, a sauce made from tomatoes and ancho chiles, are a great condiment. I love them for instance with chicken, mushrooms and cream. Chipotles in adobo … Continue reading Homemade Chipotles in Adobo Sauce
To celebrate the coming of Spring I wanted to create a dish with spring vegetables, and came up with these wonderful ravioli filled with baby asparagus, snow peas, peas, baby carrots, ricotta, parmigiano, and basil. Served with a fresh tomato … Continue reading Ravioli Primavera
Pastiera is a traditional Easter cake from Naples, filled with boiled wheat, ricotta, and candied citrus. The wheat provides an interesting texture and also makes the cake quite filling. The candied citron, candied orange, lemon zest, orange blossom water, and … Continue reading Pastiera Napoletana
Fennel develops a great flavor when it is braised slowly until it lightly caramelizes and becomes mushy, and it pairs well with fish. In this case I chose whiting, and used the heads and bones of the fish to make … Continue reading Risotto with Braised Fennel and Whiting
Do you like chocolate? Do you like to impress your guests with your skills in the kitchen? Do you find baking a bit intimidating? Then this is the perfect recipe for you! This flourless chocolate recipe is much easier than … Continue reading Easy Foolproof Flourless Chocolate Cake
There are three things I don’t like about artichokes: (1) it is a lot of work to clean them, (2) they don’t go well with wine, and (3) you can only eat a small part of them and have to throw … Continue reading Artichoke Ravioli (Ravioli con Carciofi)
Do you like Earl Grey tea? Did you know that this tea is flavored with the essential oil from the skin of bergamot orange? My homemade limoncello is a very popular digestif with my dinner guests. When I saw bergamot … Continue reading Homemade Bergamocello
As every year, for my birthday I baked to treat my colleagues. This year I made a pound cake, almond cookies stuffed with amarena cherries, and an Italian apple cake. Other than Dutch appeltaart (the same as American apple pie), Italian torta … Continue reading Torta di Mele (Apple Cake)
Tenderloin, prized for its tenderness, is an expensive cut of beef. A tenderloin tapers towards one end, and the ‘tip’ of the tenderloin is not suitable for tournedos or châteaubriand. Tenderloin tips are therefore available at about half the regular … Continue reading How to Save 50% on Beef Tenderloin
Since I had some lovely homemade sausage, I thought it was time to try another Italian classic: ravioli filled with sausage and potato. Another version of sausage ravioli is with ricotta and spinach, the Bartolini version. As I wanted the … Continue reading Sausage and Potato Ravioli (Ravioli di Salsiccia e Patate)
Homemade ravioli are my signature dish. These delicate pasta pillows stuffed with goodness are a great way to impress your guests, and would be perfect for a Christmas dinner. You can make them in advance and when it is time … Continue reading Top 10 Secrets to Make the Best Homemade Ravioli From Scratch
In a change of pace from a very involved preparation and a very sophisticated meal, in this post I’m going to show you how I cut bell peppers quickly and with zero waste. A lot of food is wasted. The statistics … Continue reading How to Cut a Bell Pepper
My first try making fish paste from scratch was a bit of a disaster, but the thai fish cakes (tod mun pla) made with store-bought fish paste were such a big success that I wanted to try again to make … Continue reading How to Make Fish Paste For Thai Fish Cakes From Scratch
It won’t come as a surprise that after visiting casa Remcooks, I have been inspired to do some Mexican/Tex-Mex/Southwestern cooking. Baby Lady got me a big bag of corn masa flour, needed to make corn tortillas and she also taught … Continue reading Homemade Corn Tortillas and Hard Taco Shells
The success of many recipes depends on using a good stock. Most store-bought stock has too much salt in the best case, and in the worst case even lacks flavor. Not to mention bouillon cubes… Homemade stock is easy to … Continue reading Homemade Pork Stock
After the success of my first homemade puff pastry, I thought croissants and pains au chocolat would be just as easy. There is one major difference though: croissants and pains au chocolat (basically croissants with a different shape and stuffed … Continue reading Homemade Croissants and Pains au Chocolat
Aioli (Catalan) or Alioli (Spanish) is the Spanish version of mayonnaise with garlic instead of mustard. It is served with various tapas. Traditionally it is made with pestle and mortar and a whisk, but a blender does a pretty good … Continue reading Homemade Aioli
This is the fourth and last installment (for now, anyway) of my series of Dutch sweets made with batter, which so fas has covered pancakes, oliebollen and appelflappen. Poffertjes are tiny pancakes made with a yeasted batter in a special pan called a poffertjespan. They are usually served with melted butter and powdered sugar. Poffertjes are something you eat mostly as a kid, as a treat from grandma. Poffertjes are prepared at home or bought from a specialized streeet vendor, a poffertjeskraam. Poffertjes should be slightly crispy on the outside and soft and airy on the inside. Continue reading “Poffertjes”
Puff pastry has a reputation of being difficult and a lot of work to make from scratch. I had never attempted it before, but now that I have I thought it wasn’t so hard at all. The main point is temperature control, which is easier right now because it is winter and thus not warm in the house. Puff pastry puffs up because it has a lot of layers of flour and butter. In this recipe, there will be 256 layers! Temperature control is so important because the butter should be soft enough to be able to handle the dough, but not melted to keep the layers intact. This means that a cool room temperature of 18ºC/65ºF is ideal in your kitchen when you make this.
There are several reasons for making your own puff pastry rather than running to the store:
- Your own puff pastry will only contain flour, butter, water, and salt. Nothing else.
- You will have bragging rights.
- It will probably taste better (depending on the quality of the store-bought pastry).
- It is cheaper than store-bought.
Running to the store is faster (depending on where the store is), as making your own puff pastry does take about 4 hours. However, most of that time is inactive time with the dough resting in the fridge. Continue reading “Home made Puff Pastry From Scratch”
Yesterday I wrote about my ‘discovery’ of fresh pomegranate juice, and complained about the messy procedure to get those arils (seeds) out. Paul and Fae reacted that there is an easier way, which is to whack the pomegranate with a wooden spoon to let the arils fall out. Since I had another pomegranate waiting to be turned into more delicious juice, I decided to try this for myself. And although I still got some small splashes of juice (probably due to my clumsiness), it worked a lot better and quicker. Thanks Paul and Fae! It is always great to learn a new technique. Continue reading “How to get the Seeds (Arils) out of a Pomegranate”