Seedy Power Crackers & Dried Fruit Chutney

Seed-Cacker-Dried-Fruit-Chutney-3Like I’ve mentioned last week, Winter, capital W and all, has arrived. While that’s generally a questionable blessing in our parts, it also means the time for our annual escape to a cosy, reed capped cottage just peeking over the top of the dam out onto the crashing waves of the North Sea on Sylt has come. Goodbye cold, miserable, grey, constant drizzle, hello North Sea!

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Saffron-Lemon Chicken with Apricot-Rosemary & Barberry Chutney

Lemon-Saffron-Chicken-Apricot-Rosemarry-Barberry-Chutney-3All right, so the “real” winter has nosed its way in – the one without the sparkly decorations, festive mood-inducing drinks, foods, gatherings and all that jazz. Not that I’m particularly downed by the holidays being over, but I have to say, the great outdoors in all its grey-on-grey splendor is looking a lot more gloomy than it did just a couple of weeks ago. Oh well… as I’ve mentioned before, there’s one surefire way – at least for me – not to succumb to the general greyness of days like these:

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Honeyed Duck, Lemon-Thyme Polenta Tiles & Blackberry-Port Sauce

Maple-Glaced-Duck-Blackberry-Sauce-Lemon-Thyme-Polenta-5A quick glance outside is revealing a Wonderful Winter-Wonderland these days. Finally, I might add – the last couple of Decembers have been depressingly warm, way too warm to really appreciate the festive groove town decorations and christmas markets were struggling to spread. Yultide season around 15-17°C? Excuse me, when did I move so far south? I know it’s a clichée, but winters have to be cold to count around these parts of the world!

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Winter Chocolate Box Special ~ Oreo Truffles

Oreo-Truffles-3Oh dear… my time-perception seems to have taken a serious hit this year! It seems like I’ve just finished my Summer Chocolate Box and all of a sudden I’m covered in chocolate yet again! The Christmas markets around town have opened their gates last weekend and the wonderful aromas of roasting nuts, spiced wine and freshly baked goods wafting through the festively decorated streets are making me wonder where the last couple of months have gone.

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Jerusalem Artichoke Soup, Crunchy Chorizo Topping & Chimichurri

Jerusalem-Artichoke-Soup-Chorizo-Chimichurri-5Up until a few years ago, jerusalem artichokes were something only to be found in natural remedy- and health product stores, disguised as or processed into diabetes supplements or diet products supposed to curb hunger by filling your tummy prior to a meal. Or, in the case of the region a bit south of our corner of the world, turned into a seriously strong booze.

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Venison Steaks with Chestnut, Black Cherry & Chanterelle Ragout

Venison-Steaks-Chestnut-Cherry-Chanterelle-Ragout-1By now, you guys probably know my love for all things venison. Lean, healthy, extremely versatile and despite – or because of – the gamey aromas, absolutely yumtastic in combination with a large variety of fruit and nuts… what’s not to love about it~? I realize that, if you’re not living in a foresty region, any kind of wild game might be a rare and therefore expensive sight in your butcher’s display.

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Sort-of Pear Tarte Tatin

Pear-Tarte-Tatin-1For some reason, November is one of the busiest months in the birthday-section of my calendar. Of course that also means November is one of the busiest months in the I-hate-my-ovenless-kitchen-department. Or, more accurately, it used to be a particularly frustrating month in that area. A couple of years back however, I decided to stop growing grey hairs over that matter and embrace the situation as the perfect opportunity to bang and clang around my kitchen on a quest to discover exiting and new workarounds for the problem that didn’t involve gelatine or cream cheese.

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Roasted Chanterelles, Smoked Salmon & Pecorino Cups

Roasted-Chanterelles-Smoked-Salmon-Pecorino Cups-2Once again I couldn’t keep my culinary curiosity in check~ I confess, I’ve been snooping around top-league Restaurant Menus for giggles again and, while the hot months of the year kind of left something to be desired on the menus of our local Michelin Star-sporting establishments, I was able to spot something to really pique my interest just a few weeks ago – a starter involving a salmon mousse, fancily smoked salmon from an even fancier sounding manufacturer halfway around the world that is, and an “air” made from chanterelle mushrooms and parmesan.

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Braised Lamb Shanks & Quince Stew

Braised-Lamb-Shank-Quince-Stew-2I love summer. I miss summer. Then again, Autumn, especially a particularly beautiful one like this year’s, has its perks~! Great seasonal ingredients calling for extended hikes/foraging trips and, once you get home from enjoying the blast of color that is the great outdoors these days, first whiffs of wintery comfort food and comfy clothes, inviting you to wrap yourself in a blanket with a good book in one and a glass of red in the other hand and, most importantly… quinces!

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