Stroopwafels or syrup waffles are exactly what they say, a very thin and crispy waffle that is filled with syrup or, to use the Dutch word, “stroop”, hence the name. Stroopwafels are extremely popular in the Netherlands and are often sold as a Dutch souvenir. Apparently they were invented in 1810 by the baker Gerard Kamphuisen in the city Gouda. In 2023 they were part of the German show “Das große Backen”, which is a German baking competition. Obviously I had to watch the show and immediately thought of these delicious waffles, which I have always liked to eat. Just as a little anecdote: for my wedding a Dutch friend of mine brought along fancy stroopwafles as a wedding gift. However, my soon-to-be parents-in law happily munched them away while staying over in my apartment, blissfully unaware that these were meant as a wedding gift. So soon the stroopwafles had to be replaced. And in order for this not to happen again, I decided to create my own recipe. I tweaked a few I found online and was happy with the result. Below recipe can be made in Germany and uses a lot of common ingredients.
Pelmeni or pelemeni are dumplings from the former Soviet Union. Today they are considered the national dish of Russia and are eaten among a lot of Slavic countries. Traditionally they are filled with meat, I took a mix of beef and pork. My dough contains butter, which makes is easier to work with. We will first “burn” the flour, which may sound a bit crazy, but bear with me, I tell you, even beginners managed to make the most beautiful pelmeni. Pelmeni require a lot of work as they are small and are prepared by hand, often an entire family will sit together and form these. But I promise, they are worth the effort.
Tomatoe tart or tarte tatin with tomatoes, pizza margherita with puff pastry dough, I don’t really know how you want to call this beauty, but you will find tomatoes simmered in caramel, baked with the dough on top and then turned upside down. Sprinkle with additional mozzarella, pine nuts and basil, and you can dig into this summery dish. I had the audacity of eating the entire thing in one go, approved of it and therefore decided to put it on the blog.
Today you will get the best cheesecake from San Sebastian from the Basque country in the north of Spain. This tarta de queso is the same recipe as from the restaurant La Viña. It contains five ingredients: cream cheese, eggs, heavy cream, sugar, and a bit of flour. As the cake is baked at high heat (200-210 degrees Celsius), it has a caramelized (or burnt) surface and thus looks a lot like crème brûlée. Inside though it is extra creamy. As all ingredients only need to be mixed, it is pretty fool-proof and thus perfect for beginners. You may enjoy this cake plain or you can serve with some fruits and/or a fruit sauce. Below recipe is similar to the one from the restaurant, I only reduced the amount of sugar. Feel free to increase the amount if you wish to.
Let’s celebrate! It has been five years ago that I had a horrible bike accident including brain bleeding. You can check the details here. As I didn’t have any permanent damage thankfully, I want to celebrate with chocolate and invite you guys, we will attempt original Sachertorte! In 2014 I was fortunate enough to eat real Sachertorte in the Café Sacher in Salzburg. The below picture is one of the first pictures I took with my Sony camera and I am still proud of the shot. I mean, considering that I knew very little of photography, I would say it is a great shot! Sachertorte is a chocolate sponge cake that contains butter. Traditionally you will glue together the two cake layers with apricot jam and cover everything with a chocolate glaze. The cake is served with unsweetened whipping cream on the side. Of course I already have a recipe for Sachertorte on the blog. However, recently I got inspired to try again and make a version as close as possible to the original. Once I watched the movie “Sachertorte” on Amazon (a nice little romantic comedy in my opinion), I was hooked. In said movie the main character eats Sachertorte every day in the Sacher Café in Vienna in the hopes of meeting his sweetheart that mentioned she would celebrate her birthday in the cafe at 4pm. So I did some research. Obviously the recipe from the Sacher hotel was a big help. But, and I quote, I have to say that even the hotel Sacher mentions that “This is only an approximation of the original recipe, which of course must remain a tightly-kept secret.”
When Meghan Markle and Prince Harry got married in May 2018, the combination of lemon and elderflower were all the rage. Yes, I also made a mini three-tiered elderflower lemon cake. Today, I decided to give this combo another chance. This year elderflowers are in full bloom at the moment, so you may even have the chance to make the cordial yourself. The new version of this royal combination contains moist lemon sponge cakes, lemon curd and a heavy cream and mascarpone filling infused with elderflower cordial. My cake only has one tier and I decided to decorate it with dried flowers and some fresh elderflowers. However, it is up to you how you want to decorate your cake.
I was not aware that the British Queen actually celebrated her 70th anniversary as a Monarch on February 2, 2022. Having reigned for 70 years, that is rare, as far as I understand she has broken all records. Obviously the Brits are celebrating, new stamps are being issued, there is going to be a tree in front of Buckingham Palace created out of 350 local British trees; yes, we all need to dress up for this special occasion and be on our best behavior. The Brits also announced a baking competition open to all people residing in the UK 8 years or older. The Platin Pudding was asked to be created. Apparently more than 5,000 people submitted a recipe. The winner is Jemma Melvin with a Lemon Swiss roll trifle with Amaretti. It is very time-consuming as all five different components are made from scratch. You can check her recipe here.
Has this ever happened to you? You want to make a specific recipe from your grandma. In my instance this was paska, the Ukrainian Easter bread. She even has two handwritten recipes in her tiny booklet. However, not even all ingredients are listed (such as flour) and there are no instructions. There is no oven temperature or even baking time. I did pull my hair when I realized that because my grandma passed away so I couldn’t ask her anymore. How am I supposed to make paska if there are no instructions and not even all ingredients listed? I remember that I confronted her on several occasions when she was still alive. Her reply was simple, you “feel” when the dough is right, you “know” how much sugar to add. Well, you may do if you make the recipe ten million times, but grandma, I am not you, I don’t feel or know anything! So instead I turned to Instagram and asked you guys if you knew of any good recipe. I was so astonished how many people actually replied and provided recipes to me. Thank you so much for that! I am so excited I got to make paska in the end, I had the chance of eating it during my childhood. My grandmother was born in the Ukraine in Odessa and she always served it for Easter.
Pavlova, a meringue nest with whipped cream and mango filling, who wants a piece? I am going to introduce this recipe from Australia/New Zealand to you. Reason for this being my hubby, who requested pavlova for our 12-year anniversary. There is a similar recipe in Colombia, called merengón with berries, whipped cream and meringue. No wonder that he wanted something similar. Pavlova is, compared to meringue, slightly different. You do have a crunchy outside, yet since you fold in a bit of cornstarch and vingear, the inside remains creamy (see picture below) which is similar to marshmallows. Does this sound like something you are into? Then you should give pavlova a try.
Today I am introducing vegan tiramisu with homemade ladyfingers. To me it almost tastes as good as the original. Since I am using vegan cream cheese (almond based) and vegan whipping cream (coconut-oil based), this vegan tiramisu is free of soy, cashew, or tofu. I find it extra delicious and perfect for any special occasion such as a birthday.