Shakshuka

This is a very easy vegetarian one-skillet dish of eggs poached in smoky vegetable-laden tomato sauce.

It’s popular across the Middle East and North Africa and works perfectly for breakfast or a late brunch.

I love this dish because it’s simple yet bold with flavours and spices so if you fancy something warm, quick and filling to eat – Shakshuka is the dish for you. Bon Shabétit!

 

Ingredients

3-4 eggs
1 pepper
1 onion
1 garlic clove
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cinnamon
salt
pepper
1 can of chopped tomatoes (400g)
5 small-ish potatoes, chopped
handful of parsley/coriander, chopped
40 g feta cheese, sprinkled
8 tbsp Greek yoghurt

 

Method

  • Heat oil in a pan and fry the small chopped potatoes with 1 tsp turmeric and a pinch of salt.
  • In the meantime, chop the pepper, garlic and onion.
  • Once the potatoes are done, put it aside in a bowl and fry the onion and pepper mixture in the same pan.
  • One they are cooked, add the potatoes and season it with pepper, smoked paprika, cumin and cinnamon.
  • Pour in the can of chopped tomatoes and add the tomato puree. Season with salt and pepper – if needed.
  • Use your spoon to make small wells in the pan and crack the egg into each ‘hole’.
  • Put the pan in the oven (190 degrees) and let it cook for 5-7 minutes.
  • Garnish with chopped parsley, feta and yoghurt.

 

Doogh

 

There’s a heathwave in UK and what’s better than a cold glass of Doogh when it’s 31 degrees? Doogh is an Iranian fizzy yoghurt drink and it’s so popular in the entire middle east that it’s sold next to popular soda drinks in corner shops.

Its purpose is to cool and help with digestion and for any Iranian uncles – it works as a miracle sleeping pill (no honestly tho, it does have an effect to make some people sleepy).

You can find plenty of versions of this drink but I’m going to share this one that I made today which is inspired by what my mom used to make.

Hope you like it and have fun in the sun! Bon Shabetit!

 

Ingredients

(For 4 glasses)

4 dl Creamy Greek yoghurt (traditionally made with fermented yoghurt so it’s intensely sour, I looooooooove it with fermented yoghurt but greek yoghurt is something I always have at home so as it’s handy it became my choice of yoghurt)
8 dl sparkling water
1 ½ tsp salt (or however much you want really… I hate giving out salt measurements because it’s different depending on the individual and how salty they like the things they drink and eat. But I thought I’d give you an ‘idea’ of how much you could salt but honestly, I just salt as I go)
1 tbsp dried mint
Ice

Garnish
Dried rose petals
Celery sticks
Cucumber
Fresh Mint

Method

  • Mix yoghurt with sparkling water.
  • Add dried mint and salt.
  • Garnish with rose petals, celery sticks, mint leaves and cucumber
  • Serve it chilled.

 

Swedish Midsummer Cake

Happy Midsummer everyone! This is one of Sweden’s most celebrated holidays and as a fellow Swede I love to celebrate it no matter where I live. Traditionally, people pick flowers and create the cutest floral crowns, dance around a pole (not those type of poles – a midsummer pole), drink lots of booze and have a table full of delicious summer foods, including lots of fish (we’re talking all sorts – grilled, smoked, pickled, cured) and potatoes.

My favourite thing to eat from that table is a strawberry cake that is so delightful that if summer was a flavour – this cake would be it. The best part? It’s ridiculously easy to make.

So, if you want to have a post-midsummer party or just an excuse for eating more cake, go make this asap. Bon Shabétit!

 

Ingredients

Sponge-cake

4 eggs
2 dl caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 dl plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
butter (for the cake tin)

Decoration

200g strawberries
2 bananas
4 dl double cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
15(ish) fresh mint leaves

 

Method

  • Warm the oven to 175 degrees.
  • Whisk the egg and sugar until light and fluffy, I whisked it for for 3 ½ minutes.
  • Mix flour and baking powder in a small bowl and gently fold them into the whisked eggs. Mix gently and then pour it in the buttered cake tin and bake for 27 minutes.
  • Turn it out from the tin and let it cool.
  • Once the cake is cold, cut it into 3 layers (you can easy do this via the knife and thread technique).
  • Whisk the cream and vanilla extract, until it goes firm.
  • Chop all the bananas and strawberries and start layering it – like a lasagna (cream -> banana –> strawberry and on to the next layer). Once you are done with the layering, you can add cream to the sides and decorate the top the way you want to. I made it like a hedgehog this year and added mint leaves on the side to represent the greenery of summer.

 

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve made chocolate chip cookies and how often I’ve failed making them chewy. When I say chewy, I want them to stay soft no matter how long they stay out… and chewy all the way through. The thing with baking is that – the measurements need to be followed religiously and that makes it really challenging for someone like me who likes to wing it in the kitchen.

During this lockdown some people learned to bake sourdough bread from scratch, 99.9% of the world population became banana bread experts – and me? I finally managed to make these damn cookies properly chewy.

Safe to say that weeks of recipe testing paid off and I highly recommend that you go and indulge yourself with these chewy cookies. Bon Shabétit!

Ingredients
(for 15 cookies)

125g butter, melted
1 dl granulated sugar
1 dl brown sugar
1 tsp salt
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking powder
3 ½ dl plain flour
150g dark or milk chocolate, or your preference

Method

  • Melt the butter and mix in the sugars and salt until it’s an even paste.
  • Beat in the egg and vanilla extract until it’s a cream-ish mixture
  • Sift in the flour and baking powder and mix it even.
  • Chop the chocolate in different sizes and add it in and then chill the dough for at least 30 min in the fridge.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C. Put small scoops of the dough onto a baking sheet. Make sure you leave space so that the cookies can spread evenly.
  • Press the scoops down with a spoon and add some additional chocolate to the cookies to make them insta-friendly.
  • Bake for 10 minutes (This is crucial, don’t leave it for longer!!). Let is cool before you eat one… or 10. Bon Shabétit!

 

Walnut & Chocolate Banana Cake

This one is my family’s favourite. First of all, for me the combination of banana, walnuts and chocolates is heavenly. My favourite ice cream of all time was ben and jerry’s chunky monkey but they stopped making it due to ‘low levels of demand’ and THEN they have the audacity to bring it back but as a non-diary version and it’s just not the same knowhatiamsayin. I’m aware that this story has nothing to do with banana cake but this topic really brings out the inner Karen in me.

Anyways, so I decided to put this golden trio into a cake instead and nothing has been the same since *UBER dramatic*. No seriously though, a piece of this warm banana cake with a cup of aromatic black tea on a cold rainy day will give you the ultimate ‘Bon Shabétit’ ambiance.

 

Ingredients

75g butter, melted
2 ½ dl sugar
2 tbsp milk
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla sugar (or vanilla extract)
2 eggs
2 ripe bananas, mashed
100g chocolate (dark or milk… doesn’t matter), chopped
2 ½ dl flour
1 tsp baking soda
a handful of walnuts, chopped

 

Method

  • Put the oven on 175 degrees
  • Melt butter – let it cool down. Mix it with sugar, milk, salt and vanilla sugar.
  • Split the eggs and mix in the egg yolks.
  • Mash the bananas and pour it into the mixture.
  • Chop the chocolate and walnuts and pour it into the mixture.
  • Mix flour and baking soda and pour it into the mixture.
  • Wisp the egg whites until it gets stiff. (Also, this is where you do the mandatory ‘hold the bowl over your head’ to check if it’s ready).
  • Mix the stiff egg whites in the mixture and just mix it with a spoon so it becomes even.
  • Pour it in to a baking tray and bake it for 30-35 min in the middle of the oven.

 

 

Bon Shabétit!

Beef patties in Mushroom Sauce

 

I don’t know about you guys but I find ‘minced meat’ being that – one – ingredient that I always tend to struggle with as I never know what to do with it. There’s minced meat as taco filling, minced meat in bolognese type of dishes, meat balls and then what… WHAT ELSE IS THERE?? I started making this dish back in Uni and I always felt particularly proud of it. I sometimes feel like beef patties on their own is a bit boring… I mean isn’t that why the hamburger was invented?

I think it’s important to have some sort of a sauce/gravy that brings it to life. But what I realised – by pure laziness tbh I just didn’t want to wash any more pans than necessary – was that when you let the patties cook in the sauce – myyy gooood – not only does the flavour multiply B U T the patties get a creamy texture that just melts in your mouth.

Also make sure you sprinkle in some feta to make that boring patty interesting (no but in all seriousness the salty and tangy feta helps to enhance the sweetness of the carrots – so don’t skip it).

Serve this dish with roasted or mashed potatoes and Bon Shabétit (and if you have any tips on what to make with minced meat – please let me know).

 

Ingredients:

Patties:

350g minced meat

1 small carrot – shredded

20 g feta cheese – sprinkled

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp salt

2 tsp pepper

3 tsp garlic powder

1 egg

1 onion – grated

2 tbsp butter

 

Mushroom sauce:

200g mushrooms

1 onion, chopped

2 tbsp butter

1 beef stock

2 tbsp soy sauce

½ dl crème fraiche

1 dl cream

¼ dl boiling water

1 tsp pepper

 

Method:

  • Gently mix together the ground beef, egg, grated onion, shredded carrot, sprinkled feta, salt and pepper, garlic powder, turmeric. Form into small patties (you should be able to do 8 medium ones).
  • Fry onion and mushroom in a frying pan until they are golden brown – and pour it in a temp bowl and put aside.
  • Melt 2 tbsp butter in the same skillet over medium heat. Add patties and fry until brown. Flip the patties and brown the other side.
  • Add the onion and mushroom mix, add crème fraiche, cream and soy. In the meantime, mix the beef stock with boiling water in a cup and pour it in the sauce. Add pepper for final touch and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes.

 

No-bake crispy peanut butter and chocolate bar

A few years ago, my friend introduced me to these types of no-bake bars when she worked at a café in Sweden and I immediately fell in love with it. I always thought it was complicated to make – turns out I was very wrong. 

Honestly, can’t get better than this: 5 ingredients, no baking, cheap and delicious.

Ingredients

10 dl corn flakes
1 jar of smooth peanut butter (340g
2 dl syrup
1 dl sugar
200g milk chocolate bar

Method

  1. Crush the corn flakes to small bits.
  2. Heat a saucepan and fill it with the peanut butter, syrup and sugar. Cook it under medium heat until smooth.
  3. Add the crushed flakes and stir until mixed.
  4. Take a medium sized pan and add a non-stick sheet. Add the mix and flatten it out to a square and make sure the top is smooth.
  5. Melt the chocolate (I do it in the microwave) and spread it on top.
  6. Put it in the fridge for about 1-2h.

Bon Shabétit!

Mango Salsa

This is a ridiculously easy recipe and it taste like it has been prepared for a lifetime.

Not only is it colourful but it’s so tasteful that your tongue will do a jarabe tapatio with each bite. Jarabe Tapatio is the Mexican national dance if you didn’t know. Neither did I… but it turns out cha cha is Cuban so couldn’t write that down as that would go against my authentic researching *cough* skills.

Let me know if you liked it and most importantly WHAT you ate it with. I like to eat my salsa with spicy prawn tacos. Also before you do anything else… google ‘that one Mexican song’, ok did you do it? Good, now play the first song that comes up. There you go the mood is set señoras y señores… Buen Shabetito. 

Ingredients

1 ripe mango

One red onion, chopped

Bunch of fresh Coriander, chopped

1 large lime, juiced

1 red chili, chopped

2/3 teaspoon salt, to taste

Method

  1. Chop everything in whatever size you like (except the lime) and add it to a serving ball.
  2. Drizzle the lime juice and add the salt and mix it well. Leave it in the fridge for 15 min and serve it with a taco of your choice. 


Baked Feta

Feta is by far my favourite cheese in the entire world. I love it so much and I pretty much always have it in the fridge. There’s so many different things you can do with it and baking it in the oven is one of them. If you haven’t already tried it, please go and do it as soon as possible because it’s just so tasty.

The good thing with this ‘appetizer’ is that there is no specific recipe you need to follow.  You can just add whatever you like and then bake it in the oven. 

I like to add tomatoes. I pretty much always find a way of adding tomatoes in my food because it doesn’t feel quite complete otherwise. But unfortunately, I’m aware that a lot of people out there do not share this love with me *cough* you’re crazy *cough* – so you can add something else such as paprika or onions.

But if you are going to go ahead with tomatoes – make sure you have cherry tomatoes as any other tomatoes will only turn it to a watery mess.

The important step here is the balsamico. It was actually my sister that suggested that I should add it and it truly made a difference. Before, I only added olive oil and honey but the balsamico gives it a syrupy sweetness that gives the dish a fresh and exciting taste. Bon Shabétit!

Ingredients

1 packet of feta (200g)
8 cherry tomatoes
1 clove of garlic
olive oil
honey 
Crema di balsamico
dried parsley
garlic powder
sea salt
pepper
chili flakes

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Chop the tomatoes in half and place them in an oven-proof dish. Crush the fresh garlic and mix it on top of the tomatoes. Sprinkle the spices and olive oil on top and place the feta on top of the tomatoes. Add spiced again and drizzle some balsamico and honey on top.
  3. Bake for 17 minutes. Serve immediately with bread, salad or crackers.

Honey-glazed Sweet Potato Fries

When I get the choice to choose a portion of fries as a side to my meal it will – A L W A Y S – be sweet potato fries. I think I was first introduced to glazed sweet potato fries one time at a Caribbean restaurant.  The glazy sweetness combined with the perfect amount of salt made the fries taste like heaven.

And since that day no combo of fries have tasted as delicious. I’m pretty sure they glazed it with golden syrup but I love to glaze mine with honey. I also like the idea of ‘fake’ deep-fried fries, which basically means you add breadcrumbs to the fries to give an extra crispy effect but don’t actually deep fry the potatoes as you bake them in oven. 

I love the combo of sweet, salty and spicy and if you love it too, then this is the recipe for you.

Ingredients

1 sweet potato, cut into long thin slices
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp chili flakes
2 tsp parsley
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt
3 table spoons olive oil
1 ½ garlic powder
1 tbsp golden breadcrumbs

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 200 C.
  2. Cut the Sweet potato into small thin slices
  3. Mix olive oil, breadcrumbs, chili flakes, parsley, honey, garlic powder, pepper and salt in a bowl. Add the potatoes and mix well.
  4. Bake in oven for 35-40 minutes, flip it after 20 minutes.