Green mango salad

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Can you believe it, until a few months ago I never had a proper green mango salad! A botched version once made from a fruit caught in limbo between unripe and tasteless was quite off-putting but let’s just forget the sad & sorry thing. This Thai classic is glorious, a revelation, it’s like a refreshing bath in a cold mountain pool or the ice-bucket challenge, it wakes all those slumbering taste buds and is an absolutely wonderful companion to seafood.  Continue reading

Raspberry tiramisu

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This was a wonderful “impromptu” dessert for a dinner with a menu more or less inspired by Venice. With spring already palpable I have a distinct longing for fresher, lighter dishes and a fruity, vernal pudding rather than a warm coffee-spiced one was what I wanted. With three punnets of raspberries filling the kitchen with their sweet, musky scent (Did you know that the galaxy is supposed to taste of raspberries and smell of rum?), this fruity transformation of the iconic Italian dessert (which I haven’t made in decades, what a shame, let’s revive the Tiramisu!) basically developed itself. Marsala in the silky Mascarpone cream adds a toasted woodsy note to complement the floral, sylvan fragrance of raspberries, which deliver the fruity punch. Continue reading

Lettuce cups with red pepper lentil balls

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Vibrant colours, bright flavour hits and warm spicy notes – all combined in these wonderful Turkish red pepper & lentil balls served on emerald green baby romaine lettuce. Turkish mercimekli köfte make a fabulous appetizer for a crowd, great finger food for a party, brilliant brunch fare or vegetarian meal and look stunning while being super easy to prepare and assemble. In the interest of stability when served as finger food I’d go back to its original shape of a small köfte, an oblong loaf shape, rather then the admittedly prettier balls which only pretend to remain stationary but suddenly start to roll on the lettuce like a fast spinning roulette ball Continue reading

Potato buns

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When the humble potato met the mighty lobster

I have never gone so far to make our own burger buns (well, until now). Usually we prefer a Kaiser roll aka the ordinary German bakery Kaiserbrötchen over a soft bun as a burger vehicle: they aren’t sweet, have a crisp crust outside with a firm interior that holds up well to the weight of a hamburger & all the fixings. A bun for a lobster roll on the other hand should be richer, buttery (but not yet a brioche), soft bordering on squishy with a fine crumb structure and just little bit sweet. Potato bread rolls fit the bill perfectly and I found these worked not only extremely well as a lobster roll but also a burger bun. Continue reading

Lobster roll

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There is no arguing, I have a passion for seafood and a husband who does not give a shell for a clam or a crab which can make coastal holidays and heaping platters of fruits de mer for two a little testing but can be a blessing in disguise when it comes to lobster. In the early days when he ate a huge pot of jet-black mussels with gusto or swooned when I served him self-made sushi (dressed) while never revealing that seafood is not really his thing, I cooked a romantic lobster dinner for two. He drew the line at lobster, owned up and there I was facing two fair-sized lobster halves – yup, hard life, I know. Nowadays we are wiser and lobster is again on the menu for those tête-à-têtes but we’ll celebrate with a surf & turf: steak for Monsieur and lobster for Madame. Continue reading

white bean gratin ( + grilled lamb chops & salsa)

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If the notion of a bean gratin evokes images of heavy & greige institution food, think again. This fine gratin is a layered flavour affair: tiny white creamy beans, a savoury, herb infused broth, a bed of sweet caramelized onions and all is covered by crispy thyme scented breadcrumbs. It can’t get any better and we found it a perfect partner to lamb chops with a slightly acidic tomato, feta & parsley salsa. Continue reading

Scarlet eggs

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I’ll make it short this week: Are these not the most beautiful eggs you have ever seen? Well, should you be looking for a little weekend project, I’d say pickle some eggs and serve this stunning brunch dish / hors d’œuvre on the next. Which leaves plenty of time to think about the rest like shopping for smoked salmon, lumpfish roe, invite some people, I mean, why wait until Easter to have some fancy eggs. Perfumed by fresh tarragon & red wine vinegar, their beetroot dyed vivid scarlet artistically contrasts the bright yellow yolks and already are a picture in themselves. Alternate these on a bed of baby spinach (really makes those colours pop) with the small beetroot & garnish with sour cream, lumpfish roe & dill. Best to have some tiny blini handy. Continue reading