Socca is a delicious, light but flavorful chickpea-flour pancake from Southern France (and similar things exist in other countries of course, Italy for example, where it’s called farinata). It’s actually street food, so it’s simple and easy to make and tastes great even without any special toppings. A little ground cumin in the dough helps to enhance the slightly earthy chickpea flavor, and sea salt and olive oil round it off.
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Pizza, pasta and noodles
Just in time before the season is over, a white asparagus recipe. I had this first at a friend’s birthday party, it had been prepared by another guest and was absolutely delicious. It’s strange how well white asparagus and cilantro go together, two things I would have never considered combining until I tried this pasta dish. The cilantro somehow enhances the asparagus and both flavors come out clear and strong. Even better, it only takes a handful of ingredients. I used whole spelt noodles here, but regular spaghetti work just as well of course. Too bad white asparagus season lasts just a few short weeks…
This was inspired by Flammkuchen or tarte flambée, something that’s common in south-western Germany and in the Alsace region of France. Traditionally it’s topped with onions and speck. I got the idea for this vegan version from a café in Berlin (Südblock, right at Kottbusser Tor in Kreuzberg, if you’re ever in the area), which serves a flatbread with beets, potatoes and feta cheese. It’s really delicious. I decided to replace the feta with this equally delicious cashew-garlic cream, which I had been experimenting with for pizza a while ago. That cream is so good, it’s hard not to eat all of it right away. And the mix of beetroot and potatos is also very satisfying. The dough needs no yeast but just water and flour and a little oil. If you’d like to make this gluten-free, just replace the spelt with chickpea flour. In that case, bake it for a few minutes longer. You can find the recipe for this also on Nourish – a great new website on food, cooking and eating, have a look…
[Read more…] about Flatbread with beetroot, potato and cashew-garlic cream
This is my current favorite dish, I eat it all the time. It can be eaten hot or cold and features whichever veggies you have in the fridge, raw or cooked. They all taste delicious with the creamy miso-tahini-lemon dressing! For me, the cinnamon-roasted sweet potato is essential though, as well as my beloved red cabbage. As for the soba noodles, the ones I used here have only 20 percent buckwheat content, since those are the ones most readily available where I live. The 100% buckwheat noodles taste even better though I think with their nutty flavor – and they are gluten free, so use those if you can! A common problem with soba noodles is that they tend to get quite sticky, but you can find detailed instructions on how to avoid this and how to cook them properly on Food52.
I’ve been experimenting with vegan pizza lately trying different crusts and various toppings. As so often when cooking vegan, I ended up not missing the the dairy at all. In fact, I even abandoned tomatoes for all kinds of other exciting things. Like this wonderful recipe for a beet-crust pizza from Bakers Royale (try it – it’s great!), which inspired me to make a sweet-potato based crust for this pizza here. I topped it with a nice roasted red pepper-sunflower seed pesto and some purple pointed cabbage. And lime zest. But obviously all kinds of toppings would work here, maybe even tomatoes…
This is a lovely spring meal. I made this the other day for two dear friends and found out that producing ravioli at home isn’t nearly as complicated or difficult as I had thought. In fact, the dough is super straighforward, and the filling is simple too, as it’s just a mix of sweet potatoes and herbs – dill in this case. I took inspiration for this from the wonderful Hortus Cuisine and used her recipe as a basis. Needless to say, one could try many things as a filling – I happen to love sweet potato ravioli and always look for them in restaurants, so I decided to go for this. But you might want to use regular potatoes, or sweet peas, or just a mix of herbs, like in the original recipe. It’s important though that the filling is relatively dry since you don’t want it to leak out of the ravioli when cooking. The pesto of course can also be made with many different types of herbs or greens and nuts. The quantities of ingredients given below are just approximations – if you make a little more, it can be easily stored in the fridge for at least a week. This was also my first time making and using dukkah – a wonderfully fragrant middle eastern spice mix that’s put together in about a minute but tastes great with anything from soups to salads. I’ve been using it almost every day since – read more about it here on The Kitchn.
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I got three lovely quince last week and since then they had been sitting on my kitchen table spreading their wonderful aroma. Quince are an odd fruit. Depending on the type, they can be tough, and at least the ones that grow in Central Europe can’t be eaten raw. Maybe that’s the reason why they have become quite rare. But they have a distinctive, slightly tart flavor, which I found perfect for a savoury galette. Usually we (meaning our grandmothers) use quince for jams or jellies, or to make what is called quince-bread, aka membrillo. But I have to say, this galette was sooo good. The quince and the goat cheese, plus some dried thyme and fresh lavender – loved it. I made just a small galette, as the quantities below would show (using a great Food52 galette pastry recipe), so in the end I used up only one quince. But while you’re at it, poach some more and eat the rest with yoghurt for breakfast. Or in a salad. Or in savoury dishes, like a stew for example. Or in a sweet tart? So many options :)
P.S.: Update: if you don’t have quince, you could also use pears for this – in that case, no need to poach or even peel anything, you could just core them, slice them, and use them right away.
I think soba noodles are the best thing ever. They take only a few minutes to cook, they can be eaten hot or cold, and they are kind of the healthy version of spaghetti. This recipe here looks a little complicated but is actually pretty simple. It’s inspired by a dish I had once at a lovely little Korean restaurant in Berlin called Core (the place couldn’t be more tiny but serves delicious lunch specials every day, on top of selling essential Korean groceries). My version involves two quick pickles (cucumbers and carrots/ turnips) and two side dishes (shitake and zucchini), plus store-bought kimchi. And if you ever wondered which gochujang to buy, read this: http://oneforkonespoon.wordpress.com/2010/07/14/the-best-gochujang/
Pasta carbonara is a perfect comfort food – and this is a quick and easy vegetarian (although not egg-less) version. The fresh herbs give it a light and summery taste and balance the eggs and cheese. Add any fresh herbs you have on hand. I think it would be great to try this with cilantro for example. I hope you’ll like this as much as I did! [Read more…] about Vegetarian pasta carbonara with fresh herbs and toasted pine nuts