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Monthly Archives: July 2015

Simple Summer Dinners

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Sometimes the perfect summer dinner just amounts to laying a few things out on a plate.

dinner

I included (from bottom left): pepper cheese, cucumber, sweet pepper, peach, blackberries, blueberries, cantaloupe, a single strawberry from the garden, bread, mushrooms in cream, cheddar, Dutch farmer’s cheese, Slovenian sausage, feta, cheese with fenugreek seeds and aïoli.

meal

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Mushrooms in Cream

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Chanterelle is one of my favorite mushrooms. I like to pan-fry it at a low heat in a bit of butter until all the liquid has evaporated, then season with salt and pepper and add just a dash of cream and cook until the sauce thickens.

mushrooms

Flan Cake

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cake2

Made with a layer of flan and a layer of cake, this dessert has a lush golden color from the caramel, which I highlighted by decorating with a spun sugar ball. It is as delicious as it looks; I made it twice. The second time I doubled the cake layer.

balls

cake3

cake4

Indian Pizza

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Ever since I first tried it, I’ve been convinced Indian pizza is the best fusion food in the world. For this pizza I made a basic pizza dough and a creamy coconut-cashew-tomato sauce. The pizza is topped with sweet peppers, tandoori chicken, purple onion and halloumi cheese.

pizza

Sun Tea

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This is a summer iced tea recipe I remember from years ago. It’s simple and makes a tea with a deep but not bitter flavour. You will need a clear large glass jar with a lid to make this, and it can only be made on a sunny day. It doesn’t matter if it is a very hot day but it should probably be at least 20° Celsius (68° Fahrenheit).

suntea_glass

Ingredients

  • 3 teaspoons unblended black tea (I use Assam second flush)
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • stevia to taste
  • water

Process

Put the tea leaves in a large glass jar with a lid. Fill the jar with cold tap water. My jar holds three and a half liters of water; if yours holds more or less you can adjust the quantity of tea leaves and lemon juice accordingly.

suntea_0

Sun tea just after it was placed outside

Seal the jar and stick the jar outside in sunlight. Leave it for several hours (at least three) to steep the tea.
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Sun tea after one hour in the sun

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Sun tea after two hours of steeping

When the tea has steeped, strain out the tea leaves and add the lemon juice. Season with stevia or other sweetener to taste.
suntea_3hours

Completely steeped and ready to be strained

Place the tea somewhere cool, such as the basement. It will keep for about five days in a cool place, and about a week in the fridge.
suntea_done

The completed tea chilling in the basement

Roasted Mushrooms with Cumin

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I adapted the original recipe to make use of brown button mushrooms I had on hand.

mushroom

Lime-Ginger Sparkling Water

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On hot days I find water with a little flavour to be more thirst-quenching than plain water. This is just water with some ginger and lime added; if you want something closer to lemonade I would recommend adding sugar to the ginger so that you get syrup rather than ginger-infused water.

lime

Ingredients

  • 4 cm piece of ginger root, chopped
  • 200 ml water
  • juice from 1/2 lime
  • 1 1/2 liters bubbly water

Process

Chop the ginger root and add it to the 200 ml of plain water. Bring to a boil and then allow it to steep, off the heat, until it reaches room temperature. Strain out the ginger and add the liquid to a pitcher.

Add the lime juice to the ginger-infused water. Top with cold bubbly water. (I make mine from tap water using Sodastream; if you buy your water you may as well already buy it with flavouring!)