Kiymet's Red Lentil Soup



This is another recipe from my work colleague (check also out her Börek and Poğaça recipe). It's a very quick and easy recipe and we used a few spare minutes at work to prepare it for lunch. It tasted delicious and made for a good team lunch.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 1/2 cups red lentils
  • 1 onion - diced
  • 1 potato - diced
  • 1 carrot - diced
  • 1 tablespoon paprika paste
  • 1 1/2 l vegetable broth
  • salt, pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon curry
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon dried herbs (e.g. mint, rosemary, parsely, thyme)
  • 1 lemon
  • crusty bread

Preparation:

  1. Heat the oil. Add the red lentils, onion, potato, carrot and paprika paste and fry for about 5 minutes. Keep stirring frequently. Add salt and pepper.
  2. Fill with the vegetable broth (or water and 1 tabelspoon ground vegetable broth seasoning). Boil with closed lid for about 15 minutes.
  3. Add the remaining spices. Squeeze the lemon over the soup and serve with the bread.





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    Apple-Walnut-Cranberry Salad



    It was time for another salad. I tried to recreate the apple-walnut-cranberry salad from our Thanksgiving dinner. The vinaigrette is slightly different as I made use of what I had at hand :)

    Ingredients:

    • 5-8 cups mixed salad greens (baby spinach, romaine, red leaf, arugula etc.)
    • half of a green apple - thinnly sliced
    • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
    • 1/3 cup feta cheese - crumbled
    • 1/2 cup walnuts - halved/chopped

    Vinaigrette:
    • 2 tablespoon lemon juice
    • 2 tablespoon orange juice (from an orange or a tangerine)
    • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    • 1-2 tablespoon olive oil
    • 1/2 teaspoon mustard
    • salt, pepper

    Preparation:

    1. Combine the salad greens, apple, cranberry, feta and walnuts. Toss it through. 
    2. Whisk all ingredients for the vinaigrette together. Mix well. 
    3. Pour dressing over salad. Enjoy :)






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    Three Kinds of Macaroons - German style


    A year ago, I ate some delicious coconut and walnut macaroons that my friends Nick and Bianka prepared. They called them "Schäumle" (which is Swabian for meringue macaroons). I am used to coconut macaroons, but I rarely eat walnut and hazelnut macaroons, so they were a very tasty surprise.

    I took this as an opportunity to bake some Christmas macaroons/ meringue cookies with my Mom this year. We made three different kinds: Walnut-Rum, Hazelnut-Almond and Coconut-Lemon Macaroons. We used Nick's recipes (which is actually partially based on their grandmother Irene) and adapted them slightly.

    "Schäumle" - a special kind of meringue macaroons

    Most times, for macarons, the egg white will be whipped separately till stiff. Then you fold in the sugar and the coconut/ nuts. However, for the meringue macaroons - the "Schäumle" -  you mix the egg whites with the sugar together and whipped it for a long time till stiff (similar to a biscuit dough). The result looks slightly different but they taste basically the same :)


    Nutty Meringue Macaroons

     

    Ingredients: 

    Walnut-Rum Macaroons (20-25 pieces):

    • 3 egg whites
    • 150 gram confectioner's sugar - sifted
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla aroma
    • 1/2 teaspoon rum aroma
    • 1 pinch salt
    • 200 walnuts - chopped 
    • thin wafers (in German they are called "Oblaten")
    • ca. 25 walnut halves (for decoration)

    Hazelnut-Almond Macaroons (15-20 pieces):

    • 3-4 egg whites (depends on size of egg)
    • 200 gram confectioner's sugar - sifted
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla aroma
    • 1 pinch salt
    • 100 gram hazelnuts - ground
    • 100 gram almonds - ground
    • thin wafers (in German they are called "Oblaten")
    • ca. 20 hazelnuts (for decoration)

    Preparation:

    Preheat oven to 130 degree Celcius (ca. 270 degree Fahrenheit).
    Prepare two separate batters for the walnut and hazelnut macaroons.
    1. In a bowl, add the egg whites and the sugar. Beat with an electrical mixer or blender for about 8-10 minutes till it is relatively firm from consitency and does not run down the blender hooks anymore.
    2. Add the aroma and salt. Fold in the chopped walnuts or ground hazelnuts/almonds.
    3. Best to cool the batter for 1 hour in the fridge, this will prevent that the macaroons spread too much.
    4. Wafers are optional, but we used them. Place the thin wafers on a parchment lined baking tray. Be careful that they do not touch, as the macaroons could spread. Now, either use two teaspoons or a pastry bag (cut of a corner of a zip lock bag) and pipe the mixture in a half-dome shape on the wafers. Decorate each macaroon with a walnut half or a hole hazelnut.
    5. Bake for 10-20 minutes. Time depends on oven and ingredients. Keep checking the macaroons, they only need to dry. In this recipe, the walnut macaroons needed the longest.


    Coconut-Lemon Macaroons

    Ingredients (ca. 10 pieces):

    • 2 egg whites
    • 75 gram confectioner's sugar - sifted
    • 1/2 teaspoon lemon aroma
    • 100 gram coconut - shredded
    • thin wafers (in German they are called "Oblaten")

    Preparation:

    Preheat oven to 130 degree Celcius (ca. 270 degree Fahrenheit).
    1. Beat egg whites till completely stiff. 
    2. Fold the sifted confectioner's sugar gently into the egg whites. Add the aroma to the egg whites. Fold in the shredded coconuts.
    3. Best to cool the batter for 1 hour in the fridge, this will prevent that the macaroons spread too much.
    4. Place the thin wafers on a parchment lined baking tray. Be careful that they do not touch, as the macaroons could spread. Now, either use two teaspoons or a pastry bag (cut of a corner of a zip lock bag) and pipe the mixture in a half-dome shape on the wafers.
    5. Bake for 10-20 minutes. Time depends on oven and ingredients. Keep checking the macaroons, they only need to dry. Coconut macaroons are done when they turn slightly golden-brown. 


    If batter is too liquid:
    • Make sure to let the batter sit for a few hours, best in the fridge. 
    • Add another beaten egg white.
    Aroma: 
    • I used little bottles of vanilla, rum and lemon aroma. You can of course switch it up, but lemon and coconut and walnut and rum definitely go good together. Instead of little bottles of liquid, you might find other aroma sugars/extracts that you can use, but be careful not to use too much.






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