Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Cranberry Chutney

This was a success last year - taken from the williams sonoma website - and one of the few things, kellie trusts me, the foreigner, in preparing for thanksgiving.

  • 1 bag of cranberries (340 g)
  • 1,5 cups of fresh orange juice
  • 3/4 cup of cloudy apple juice or cider
  • 3/4 cup of white sugar
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar (firm)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5 mint leaves
Sort out the soft cranberries and mix all the ingredients in a pot, bring to a boil and let simmer until it thickens. They suggest about an hour. I think it takes longer. Let it cool and transfer into a different bowl and refrigerate. Take out an hour before serving.


Turkey Brine

I ripped this from the big M. Stewart last year, and it was so good I'm using it once again. (Not to mention I have all of the spices left over from last year!)

Makes enough brine for one 18- to 20-pound turkey

  • 7 quarts (28 cups) water
  • 1 1/2 cups coarse salt
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons whole coriander seeds
  • 1 tablespoon dried juniper berries
  • 2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black or brown mustard seeds
  • 1 fresh whole turkey (18 to 20 pounds), patted dry, neck and giblets reserved for stock, liver reserved for stuffing
  • 1 bottle dry Riesling
  • 2 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme
Word to the wise: this is hard to do by yourself. I know because I just did it while home alone. It is not impossible, but more difficult. I used the 2" baking pan that I will be roasting the turkey in tomorrow, but once I had about 4 quarts water plus a bottle of reisling, my "brining" bag started to sag. Ultimately you want something deep that is as tall as the turkey, or some other turkey around to hold the bag while you pour in the liquid ;)

  1. 1. Bring 1 quart water, the salt, bay leaves, and spices to a simmer, stirring until salt has dissolved. Let cool for 5 minutes.
  2. 2. Line a 5-gallon container with a large brining or oven-roasting bag. (I used two garbage bags) Place turkey in bag. Add salt mixture, remaining 6 quarts (24 cups) water, and the other ingredients. Tie bag; if turkey is not submerged, weight it with a plate. Refrigerate for 24 hours, flipping turkey once. XO -kellie

Monday, November 24, 2008

Cashew Crusted Tofu

This is my own take on a vegan "chicken nugget" recipe, and is actually much simpler. I don't have nutritional yeast lying around anymore like the good ol' California days, but I do have a lot of nuts. I used a handful of cashews that I had roasted a few days before. It works great with the ones I roasted a little too long. Place the cashews in a sandwich bag, and crush them with a rolling pin. Add nut pulver, a sprinkle of bread crumbs and S/P to a shallow dish.

Coat tofu on all sides with olive oil, and then coat it evenly with the nut mixture. Bake on 350 for about 25 min., flipping halfway through.

I served this up with some garlic Swiss Chard, and Basmati rice with a drizzle of Hoisin sauce.

Enjoy! -kellie

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Perfect Storm

Perfect for this time of year!

Mix in a bowl:
1/2 C. sugar
the seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean

dip the rim of a glass in water and then dip it in the vanilla sugar.

put some ice in the glass and add:

2 oz. dark rum
1.5 oz. apple cider
1 oz. ginger beer.


Cranberry Relish

My grandmother makes this every Thanksgiving. This is the perfect thing to bring if you are looking for something cheap, easy, and delicious!

Mix in a Blender:

1 bag raw cranberries
1 large orange whole (remove seeds)
apx. 1 C. Sugar.

It's really good!


Late Fall Roasted Vegetables

Another great thing to take on Thanksgiving.

Mix in a Pan:

Any vegetable on hand chopped roughly, such as:

Green beans
peeled and quartered shallots
whole unpeeled garlic cloves

pour on some olive oil, salt, pepper and any fresh herbs on hand
roast at 400* for about 20 minutes.

Ginger Apple Crisp/Galette

The perfect thing to bring on Thanksgiving! (Shout out to KatyJ)
You could easily do this without the galette-- just put the apple mixture topped by the oats mixture in a buttered pan.

Peel, core, and chop 3-4 large to medium apples
Place in a bowl and toss lightly with:
1 T. grated ginger
1 T. chopped crystalized ginger
a large handful of raspberries or cranberries (raw or dried)
a little less than 1/2 C. sugar
a good shake of cinnamon
2 T. Flour

In another bowl mix with fingers:
1 C. oats
1/2 C. brown sugar
3 T. Flour
1/4 C. butter
a good handful of chopped walnuts or pecans

Mix with a fork in a bowl:
2.5 C. flour
1t. sugar
1t. salt
1/4 C. water
2/3 C. oil

mix until it comes together as a dough and then roll out a big circle on a piece of foil.

dump the apples in the center and then pull up the edges of the dough around them-- creating a bowl effect. top with oat mixture and slide the whole thing onto a cookie sheet. Bake for about an hour @ 350*

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Let me introduce to you the finest that dutch cuisine has to offer... well traveled as you are, dear reader, you might think of frikadellen, kroketten or - what the heck - hash brownies. But let me tell you, if there is one thing worth recreating it is stamppot: a refined dish made of mashed potatoes and a green vegetable of your choice. traditionally green cabbage. we used spinach.

1/2 kg of potatoes
1 kg of spinach

Make mashed potatos: Bring water with potatoes to a boil, peel them, mash them, add some heated milk, butter, salt and a dash of nutmeg. Meanwhile wash the spinach and sautee it briefly. And now... mix it all together. fun!

Traditionally, stamppot is topped off with some gravy and served with rookworst. We used organic bratwurst instead, which was a fine substiute.

To make the "gravy", I simply melted some butter, stirred in flour and bouillon until it had the right consistency.

Great comfort food!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

more on the cold season

ok, true, I am a bit obsessed about this cold I got. but seriously, who wouldn't appreciate advice from mother nature, even if they are not related to eating? They are related to food! yes, you got it. I am talking about inhaling to attack the nasty stuffy nose. Here is how I have defeated any sinus infection et al growing up:

1 onion
1 bag of chamomile tea
2-3 drops of tiger oil (or a tiny bit of tiger balm, if you don't have the oil)
a large pot of boiling water

Basically, you are making a huge pot of onion-chamomile tea with a hint of tiger balm, put a towel over it and your head underneath it and breath for as long as it is hot. My mom made us do this 3 times a day and we all know, we better listen!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Chicken soup

It has gotten cold here. And with the first fall of the temperatures comes inevitably... a cold. I have been sniffling for a week now and I am planning to get rid of this cold by making the ultimate cure: chicken soup.


  • Chicken with bones and skin
  • Your greens: parsley, a thick slice of celery root, carrots, parsnip, some leek (you can buy this here already packaged, because people actually still make their own soups)
  • Garlic
  • 1 yellow onion with skin
  • peppercorns
  • 1 tomato
  • and my personal favourite herb Liebstöckl (I found these translations: Lovage, Love Parsley, Garden lovage, Bladder seed)

Bring the water to a boil with the chicken already in it (otherwise you don't get all the good stuff). Cut your onion in half and roast it on the stove. Keeping its skin will add color.

Wash all of your other ingredients (but keep a carrot and some parsley for later) and add them to the meanwhile boiling water. salt. basta. Sadly, you now have to wait for 2 hours, which I use to write up the recipe.

Once the soup is done, skim some of the fat from the chickenskin off the top. Drain your soup into another bowl and throw in some delicious noodles and the sliced carrot you saved earlier. Boil until tender. Add chicken meat, and finally before serving, add some finely chopped parsley. For an extra health kick you could grate some fresh ginger into your individual soup bowls. Eat it. Feel better.


Monday, November 10, 2008

mini Orange Cakes

This was my first successfully executed dessert in Vienna. I'm pretty darn proud given the measuring restraints and the long hours of figuring out the difference between baking soda and baking powder (in German).

2-3 oranges
12 tbs. brown sugar
6 tbs. melted butter

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of 4 - 6 custard cups
with 2 tbs. brown sugar followed by 1 tbs. melted butter.

Zest one of the oranges. Working with 1 orange at a time, and using a sharp knife, cut a slice off both ends of the orange, and then thickly slice off the peel and pith in strips, following the contour of the fruit. Holding the orange in one hand, cut along either side of each section to release it from the membrane, letting the sections drop into a bowl. (This was messy. The sharper the knife, the better)

Combine wet ingredients with electric mixer:
8 Tbs. (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Grated zest of 1 orange
2 eggs

Beat on medium-high speed until creamy.
Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Dry ingredients:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt

Using a rubber spatula, fold the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Stir in 1/4 cup heavy cream and 1 tsp. vanilla extract cream until thoroughly incorporated. Spoon the batter over the oranges, dividing it evenly among the custard cups.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Soup is comfort, soup is easy and in the season of pumpkins... Pumpkin Soup. (Kürbis) I chose to use a soup-friendly pumpkin here in Vienna known as the Ambercup, but I also like Hokkaido. Ambercups are smallish, orange and have a dry, sweet taste.

Preheat oven to 400° F, and get yourself these things:
1 Pumpkin (~1 lb or medium sized), halfed and seeded
2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
2 Celery Stalks, roughly chopped
2 Carrots, roughly chopped
1 Shallot, roughly chopped
1 Garlic clove, minced
1/2 Tsp. ground Nutmeg
3 - 4 cups Broth
*Heavy cream, Apple cider (optional)

Slice the specimen in half, spoon out the guts and place cut-side-down in a cassarole dish. Fill the dish with about a cup of water so that it does not dry out or burn. Bake at 400
° F for around 45 minutes, or until a paring knife glides through the thickest part. Let cool (or treat yourself to a game of hot potato) and scoop the flesh from the outer skin. Set roasted pumpkin aside.

In a large pot heat olive oil, and cook shallots for 5 min. Create a hot spot in the pot by pushing the shallots to the side, and add minced garlic. Cook for 1/2 min (do not burn garlic). Add carrots, celery and sauté for 5 min. Add 3 cups of broth, bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer until soft. Add pumpkin/salt & pepper/nutmeg. Puree until smooth. Add more broth if soup is too thick.

*You can also add a bit of heavy cream and apple cider for a more sweet and creamy soup.

Garnish with pumpkin seed oil and serve.