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Friday, November 26, 2010

Merluza (Hake) fillets in blue cheese sauce

A light and easy fish dish.

1 kg Merluza (Hake) fillets
750 ml light sour cream
400 gr Roquefort cheese

  1. Rinse and dry the fish. Place fillets in an oven tray and drizzle lemon juice and salt.
  2. Chop the cheese and spread over the fish.
  3. Spread the cream evenly on the fish.
  4. Cover the tray in tinfoil and place in the oven, heated to 200 degrees C for 20-25 minutes.
  5. The fish may release some liquid while cooking - if there is too much of it, remove it from the tray. 
  6. Remove the foil and place back in the oven under high heat, until golden.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Itay's Orange Vegetables Soup

No Oranges Were Harmed In The Production Of This Soup

This soup is similar to the sweet potato & coriander soup, but has a wholly different character.

4-5 large carrots
3 sweet potatoes
1 piece of pumpkin
1 butternut squash
1 large onion
2 cloves of garlic, chopped.
Celery stalks
Salt and black pepper to taste
Sweet paprika, 1 spoon
Ginger, 1/2 teaspoon
Curry powder, 1/4 tea spoon
Chilies, a pinch

A large pot
  1. Peel and roughly chop the carrots.
  2. Do the same with the sweet potatoes and pumpkin.
  3. Clean and chop the butternut squash.
  4. Roughly chop the celery stalks. Make sure to remove the leaves.
  5. Roughly chop the onion.
  6. Heat up some olive oil in a pot.
  7. When the oil is hot, mix in the celery and onion.
  8. Once they onion and celery are soft and have "sweated out" a bit, add the garlic.
  9. Add all the spices, except the salt.
  10. Stir for a few seconds. The aroma from the garlic and spices should be very strong now.
  11. Add all the orange veggies and cover with water. Cover the pot, bring to a boil, and move to a low flame for about 30 minutes.
  12. When all the veggies are soft, add a pinch of salt, and blend it all together until the soup reaches a thick consistency. Then cook for another 5 minutes.
  13. Taste and fix seasoning with salt and pepper.
  14. Serve with sour cream and a few Tabasco drops.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Corn Soup


5 ears of corn, salt, pepper, 2 egg whites, 4 liters water


large pot

1.  Slice kernels off the cob

2. boil corn cobs and kernels in 4 liters of water, with 2 teaspoons of salt and 1 teaspoon of vegetable soup powder

3. cook on medium heat for 20-30 minutes, remove the cobs and blend until smooth

4. while stirring, drip egg whites into the soup, and serve!

Sweet Potato Soup with Coriander and Coconut milk

A nice, creamy soup with the tang of lemon and coriander.
adapted from Lisa Brink's recipe

1 medium onion, chopped,
1 teaspoon crushed garlic,
a bunch of fresh coriander
6 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed,
2 sticks of lemongrass, bruised,
3 cups vegetable stock,1 tin coconut milk


large pot
blender stick

1. peel and cube the sweet potatoes, chop the coriander, garlic and onion.

2. fry the onion in the pot with some olive oil until it softens, then add the garlic and coriander. leave on the heat for a minute.

3. Add the cubed potato, the bruised lemongrass and the stock and simmer for 20 minutes.

4. remove the lemongrass stalks, add the coconut milk and season to taste.

5. blend until smooth

COOK'S NOTES: Bruise lemongrass stalks by banging with a mallet or a heavy tin can to release the wonderful flavor. The zest of a large lemon can replace the lemongrass stalks but can't compare in terms of taste.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Mamaliga, North Abraxas Style

Despite what the menu at North Abraxas says, this is not really Mamaliga. this is best described as Creamed Corn. nevertheless, when made from fresh sweet corn, no one can complain!

5 ears of corn, 1 litre skim milk, 100 grams butter
salt, pepper, sour cream.
Box Grater, Large frying pan

1. grate the corn. all of it. another way is to cut the kernels with a knife, and use the blunt side of the blade to scrape the stalk.

2. melt the butter in the frying pan and add the grated corn. let it sweat a little on medium heat, but do not allow the butter to burn

3. when the corn absorbed all the butter, start adding milk, a little at a time while stirring. keep adding milk and stirring until the corn reaches a creamy and soft consistency.

4. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, and garnish with chopped chives or sauteed cherry tomatoes.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Fettuccine with Mushrooms, Bacon and Cream

Ingredients: (for four portions)

One pack (500 g.) of fettuccine, 2 cartons of fresh champignon mushrooms, 1 big onion, 1 bulb of garlic, 4 containers of sour cream 15% fat (check how many grams), 250 g. bacon, a quarter glass of white wine, salt, pepper, grated Parmesan cheese.

Important: first prepare the sauce, and then cook the pasta. A cold sauce you can heat up, but letting the fettuccine cool is a crime.
While preparing the sauce you could boil the water pot - add some salt as well.

1. Fry bacon in a pan until crispy, and then crumble.

2. Heat oil in the pot an add the onion and garlic.
fry until the onions soften, then add the mushrooms and the white wine, salt and pepper.
cover the pot for a few minutes until the mushrooms release their liquids and the sauce starts to bubble.

3. Add the cream, stir and cover for a couple of minutes. add the bacon and cover again. keep cooking the sauce until it thickens and starts to bubble, but don't let it boil - that will break the creamy texture. don't forget to taste!

4. Add a little oil to pasta pot with the now boiling water, to prevent the pasta from sticking to itself. add the pasta and cook according to the instructions, usually about 7 minutes, until it's "al dente".

5. Serve the pasta in deep and warm plates, add the sauce on top and serve to the table, preferably with a nice Chianti. Enjoy!

Bonus Recipe:

fry some mushrooms in the leftover bacon fat. eat with french bread, try to avoid the coronary.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Simple Sushi

Sushi is what made me start this website.

i was looking for a simple guide to making sushi so i can do it at home and stop paying the exorbitant prices in local sushi places.

i usually stick to simple kinds of fish - salmon or red tuna fillets, but you are welcome to try any combination of fish and vegetabales (or even fruit!) you can think of.

2 cups of sushi rice (small, round grain)
4 Cups of water
15 Seaweed (Nori) sheets
400 grams fresh fish - i use red tuna or salmon fillet, but feel free to experiment with any kind of fish, seafood, fruit, etc.
vegetable strips - cucumbers, carrots, avocados

to flavor the rice:
rice vinegar,
dry white wine,

Bamboo sushi rolling mat

1. wash the rice well and cook in a pot for 20 minutes on medium heat. turn off the heat and let sit (covered) for 10-15 minutes. the rice should be soft and sticky, but not mushy.

2. while the rice is cooking, cut the vegetables and the fish into thin, long strips.

3. flavor the rice with a mixture of equal parts rice vinegar and white wine (4-5 spoons each), with half a spoon of sugar.

4. place one Nori sheet on the rolling mat and cover with rice (leave about 2 cm free) and place the fish and vegetable strips and start rolling away from you. use a little wasabi or water to glue the edge of the seaweed, and voila! the first roll is done.

5. repeat #4 untill you are out of seaweed, fish, vegetables or patience. try different combinations to keep it interesting.

note: to make thinner sushi rolls, use half a sheet and less fillings.

6. cut the roll into portions, and remove the ragged edges for a better presentation.
serve with Wasabi paste, pickled Ginger, Soy sauce, Teryaki sauce.

But wait! what do we do with the leftover fish and rice?
Bonus Recipe! fried rice balls with fish bits!
make small balls of rice, stick a bit of fish in it and cover with egg. throw into a frying pan until golden.