czwartek, 29 stycznia 2015

Kumquat jam / Dżem z kumkwatów

During  winter in Andalucia I spend some time cooking jams. The season for citrus is from December till February. I take advantage of widely accessible fruit which are really cheap and without preservatives. For 2.5 kg of fruit I added 700g of sugar, zest and juice from 1 lemon.

niedziela, 25 stycznia 2015

Aunt's Wanda nut cake / Tort orzechowy wg przepisu cioci Wandy z Londynu

Aunt Wanda and her family where from Przemyśl. Like many of the intelligentsia she was displaced to Kazachstan along with her parents and sister. This happened after soviet troops entered Poland on the 17th of September 1939. She moved from Kazachstan to Jerusalem with the army of general Anders. There she met her husband, a soldier suffering from turbeculosis, conscripted into the soviet army. He was a polish man from her hometown Przemysl. They never came back to Poland but stayed in London where Aunt Wanda died in 1990. She left behind many recipes. In her home, she cultivated typical polish cuisine from the eastern borderlands. This recipe is one of my favorites, I used to cook this cake after the New Year for my daughter's birthday. 

wtorek, 20 stycznia 2015

Lobster thermidor / Homar thermido

I find these crustaceans problematic. Not only it’s quite difficult to reach for their succulent meat but  their taxonomic names vary according to their size and kind of legs. It is quite confusing for me. 
You can buy them in Spain, under different names and prices. They are also available alive. It is important  to prepare them in a humanitarian way. The best way to do it is to put them into a freezer, apparently they fall asleep then.
I bought them already boiled, and cooked their meat in a sauce that I prepared beforehand.

sobota, 17 stycznia 2015

Pomegranate jelly / Galaretka z owoców granatu

In Andalucia, pomegranate is in season during November. It is the best time to buy them, the taste is great and price is low. Pomegranate trees are beautiful. There are also decorative, miniature varieties available. Their leaves are small and flowers absolutely amazing, carmine red. The fruit are healthy and they look good as well. This jelly tastes great with wheat bread and butter and also with baked poultry.

środa, 14 stycznia 2015

Beef sirloin tartare- the Mexican way / Tatar z polędwicy wołowej po meksykańsku

For this meal I used Brigit Binn's recipe. Her recipes are really good, I have tested quite a lot of them. In Poland some of them can be problematic. Not all kinds of meat are available here. For instance beef from our shops is not suitable for a lot of her ideas. It's a different kind of meat. Most of the times it comes from the dairy cattle breeds. You can buy an antricote or roastbeef but it is not the same as the one from the meat breeds. Sometimes I buy beef in Germany, it is available in a really wide range. In terms of breeds but also the country of origin. From super expensive Japanese ones, to Irish, French, German, Brazilian or Argentinean (in very affordable prices). Sometimes Brazilian beef is available in Makro, it's quite difficult to get something else than sirloin though. For today's recipe, however, it will be good enough.

poniedziałek, 5 stycznia 2015

Pork sirloin with a "vegetable bouquet" / Polędwiczki wieprzowe z „bukietem jarzyn”

Why the "vegetable bouquet" in the title? Well a bit from contrariness. Maybe younger then me won't remember, but back in time in Poland in every restaurant a main course was served with something called a vegetable bouquet. In fact it had little to do with a bouquet. What you were served were miserable, overcooked pieces of veggies, sometimes wilted salad soaked in a scary, suspicious liquid. Typical bouquet consisted of overcooked beetroots in a thick sauce, carrot salad swimming in something sweet, tough red cabbage, sauerkraut, sometimes soggy, green beans or broccoli. Most of the times it was inedible.
Today I will serve pork sirloin with vegetables, but they will be tender. Remembering the "bouquet" I deliberately undercooked them.

piątek, 2 stycznia 2015

Cataplana / Kataplana

Cataplana is the name of a meal and also traditional dish in which it is prepared. It is typical for Portuguese cuisine. It has its roots back in the medieval times. I would say that it's a kind of a medieval pressure cooker. You can prepare in it all sorts of foods: vegetable, meat, fish. But the most common is the sea food. That's how we were introduced to it for the first time in Lisbon. We were intrigued by the unknown word in the menu so we asked the waiter. He brought us really pretty, copper dish and explained that this is the cataplana. When the food was served an amazing aroma spread. It is one the advantages of serving meals in cataplana. Today I have prepared a cataplana with cod. The proportions are not that important.