Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Pissaladière

Pronounced "pea-salad-year", it's a cousin of pizza from Nice, so quite a nostalgic food for me. 
You can get it everywhere over there (bakeries, supermarkets, street stalls...), but no hope of ever finding it here... Luckily, it's quite easy to make:)

Ingredients (for 1 big/2 small pissaladières)
For the dough:
250g self raising flour 
150ml water
a pinch of salt 
a generous drizzle of olive oil
For the topping:
7 medium sized onions 
a few anchovies 
a few black olives 
thyme 
balsamic vinegar 

Preparation 
1. Slice the onions and sauté them in olive oil with plenty of thyme. You want to first put them on high heat to brown them a bit, then add a slog of balsamic vinegar and reduce to medium low, still stirring regularly.

Traditionally, pissaladière is made with white onions, but I couldn't resist this beautiful color:



2. While the onions are gently reducing, we're going to make the dough. Mix the flour, salt, water and olive oil into an homogenous ball.

I do it with a stand mixer and dough hook, but it would work just fine by hand.


3. Flour a work surface and roll the dough into shape (I make 2 small ones because we have a small oven). In a pinch, you can use a clean wine bottle as a rolling pin.


4. Once the onions are ready, spread them on the dough (leaving a little border), and add the black olives and anchovies.


5. Bake at 200C for 15 min (up to 25 if you have a slow oven), and enjoy!!!




For example i
t goes very well with a side salad of mixed leaves, cherry tomatoes and yellow bell pepper...


Friday, 1 January 2016

Happy New Year :-)

2015 was a great year :-) For a lot of reasons, big and small, but there was definitely a pretty big one: we got married!!! :-)


It all went pretty fast actually: we got engaged last May, and since we wanted decent weather for our wedding, we had to decide between trying to organise it in the autumn before it got cold, or wait until the end of the spring next year.

Neither of us is very patient, and there are few things that dial the anticipation up to 11 like getting married:-)
Also, after thinking about it, we figured the more time we had to plan it, the bigger it would become and the more it would take over our life (and our savings!).
So the autumn it was.

So we kinda buried ourselves in wedding planning and dropped off the face of the Earth for a while, but it was all worth it:-) We had an amazing day, and it was great to be surrounded by family and friends!

More details some other time, but for now, here's hoping 2016 is at least as great as 2015:-) Happy New Year everyone!!!

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Mini woolly hat with pom-pom



Not really the season anymore I know, but I'm gradually learning more knitting skills... This helped me practice the purl stitch, and learn decreases (knit 2 together and purl 2 together... which do what they say on the tin).

The pom-pom - which turned out super duper fluffy if I may say so myself - I knew how to make from kids camps years ago. Basically you only need a bit of cardboard, yarn and a needle (no need for a pom-pom maker!).
You can find a tutorial here (I didn't bother measuring the circles, I just eyeballed it).

So why a mini hat? Well there's this campaign every year where they put mini woolly hats on smoothie bottles and give a fraction of the profits to charity (original UK version here).
Here are two from smoothies I bought in January:

I really like the red one. The cream one kinda looks more like a condom, but hey it's possible that it was the idea...

Anyway, I thought it was kinda cool, and since they've published knitting patterns for people to make them, I thought I'd try my hand at the beginners' one:)

If someone else fancies giving it a try, it's the first one on this page (that one's in French, though you can find a pretty similar one on the UK website).

I'm really hoping they run the same campaign again this autumn, so I can send it in... And it'd be really cool to spot it on a smoothie on the shelves;)


Sunday, 12 April 2015

Roasted Sea Bass with Minneola

You probably read this as "Roasted Sea Bass with... What?". You're not alone. I also hadn't heard of minneola before making this.

Basically a minneola is one of these new citrus fruits made by crossing other citrus. This one is a cross between a grapefruit and a tangerine. And it is closest to the tangerine (it looks like a small orange but is sweeter and juicier).

So the "inspiration recipe" is something I found on my laptop (I bought a new laptop with Windows 8, that has "tiles" with different kind of things, one of them being food and drink, with recipes. I was quite chuffed to find that my new laptop came with a collection of recipes!!). 

It was sea bass with herb butter sauce and lemon, and looked scrumptious. So we decided to make a version of that. Kristof thought it was with orange, so he brought a minneola back from the shop (and I'm glad he did, that definitely made it more interesting:) ).

Ingredients 

2 filets of sea bass
1 minneola 
fresh pasta (we used 500g but that was a bit too much, so I'd say 300g)
200-300g fresh spinach 
olive oil 
oregano
ras-el-hanout

Preparation 

1. Slice the minneola as finely as possible, make indentations in the fish and place the slices in the indentations. Place a few more slices under the fish, and nibble on the remaining slices, they're really yummy;)
Add some olive oil, oregano and ras-el-hanout on the fish and minneola slices.

2. Roast the fish and minneola at 200 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes.

3. Cook the fresh pasta, stir-fry the spinach, put everything nicely on plates, and enjoy:)

P.S. Putting everything nicely on plates is Kristof's job here, since he's better at it than I am ;)