Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Cayman Islands: Captain Morgan's Rum Cake

I was never crazy about pirates, treasure hunts, and romanticizing this lifestyle. Consequently, I had never heard of Captain Henry Morgan either. When I saw the recipe for this cake, I thought, well, a rum cake could be nice to bake for the "Cook Around the Globe" event. I went to the liquor store to get some rum and what did I see? Captain Morgan's rum - just like the name of the recipe. The cake is a nice, simple coffee cake. It was the first time I made a rum cake, so I wasn't sure how much rum to drizzle over it (the recipe didn't give an amount). I think I could have used more than I did. Also, the recipe called for a 2.5 l loaf pan, which I don't have. I decided to bake the cake in my 2 l bundt mold and use the remaining batter for muffins.

This recipe will be linked to the "Cook Around the Globe" - August 2011 event.

P.S. : This recipe just made the Top 9 on Foodbuzz. Thank you so much to everyone who buzzed it! (9/6/2011)

   

Pizza - finally!

Finally, the hot, humid summer is coming to end, and I can use my oven again to make pizza! Don't get me wrong, I like the summer, but I also really enjoy the late summer in September when it's actually just the right temperature to be outside. It cools down nicely during the night and then gets nice and warm (warm, not hot!) during the day. 

Ham & Mozzarella (left), Salami & Mozzarella (right)
Olives, Capers, Anchovies & Salami Pizza
For the recipe, click here. To check out my other pizza toppings, click here.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Meal Plan for August 31 - September 2, 2011


After a long weekend in NYC with a great opening day at the US Open and lots of meat dishes at the in-laws, we are back home and I came up with an almost meatless meal plan for the rest of the week.


Wednesday: Homemade Pizza  lol!

Thursday: Potato Pancakes with Shrimp and Dill-Garlic-Dip

Friday: Spaghetti with Sun-Dried-Tomato-Almond Pesto (from: Food & Wine)


Go to Menu Plan Monday to check out lots of other meal plans and ideas for this week's dinners.

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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Bermuda Burger

What can I say? This was a delicious burger. The mix of minced green pepper and onion in the meat make the patties light and juicy, and the lettuce and cucumber give it a nice crunch. You can of course make it into a cheese and/or bacon burger, but I didn't think it needs those additions.

This recipe will be linked to the "Cook Around the Globe" - August 2011 event.

   

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Herring in Yogurt Sauce

The summer is almost over, so I had to squeeze in this favorite one more time. For a picture and the recipe, click here.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Puerto Rico: Adobo Seasoned Grilled Chicken and Arroz con Gandules (Rice with Peas)

This is a nice and easy recipe. I had never used this adobo seasoning before and I liked it a lot. The rice, too, has a nice combination of flavors. The whole recipe is easy to prepare. I'm sure it will show up on our meal plan again some time.

This recipe will be linked to the "Cook Around the Globe" - August 2011 event.

   

Monday, August 22, 2011

Jamaica: Rich Rasta Brownies

Alright, I know what you must be thinking (and Kim's comment, which was posted when I only had the picture up here, shows that I'm right) but I can assure you that these brownies do not contain any illegal substances. Though I have to tell you that my cookbook explicitly mentions that the original recipe for these brownies does contain marihuana leaves and flowers. As to the outcome of the recipe (my version I mean), well, it wasn't all that great. I was very skeptical from the beginning because these brownies, being a rastafari recipe, do not contain any eggs. They turned out rather crumbly, so I would definitely add 1 or 2 eggs to the batter. As for the taste, I am not a big fan of molasses. The smell of pure molasses almost makes me sick. However, that taste is not very strong in the baked brownies. It was an interesting recipe to try but I don't think I would make it again. There are much better brownie recipes out there.

This recipe will be linked to the "Cook Around the Globe" - August 2011 event.

   

Spaghetti with Zucchini Mustard Sauce

When I saw Charlie's (over at Sweet Salty Spicy) recent post about Creamy Dijon Zucchini, I was reminded of a very similar recipe that I had prepared before. Usually, this recipe is prepared with sliced zucchini that left intact. This time, however, I had frozen zucchini that I wanted to use up so I thought I just try pureeing the sauce, as frozen zucchini often doesn't hold its shape well and turns out floppy and soggy. Plus, the pureed sauce is great to have with spaghetti. I liked the result and so did HubbyGrouch, although he had been getting tired of too much zucchini during the last weeks.

Meal Plan for August 21 - 26, 2011

I recently joined a few food blogger events (The Daring KitchenThe Secret Recipe ClubYour Best Recipe). I think those events are a lot of fun and a good opportunity to connect with other food bloggers. I recently came up with my own idea for an event. I am hereby introducing "Cook Around the Globe" - the food blogger event where we learn about international cuisines simply by preparing dishes from different parts of the world. There will be a different topic each month. If you are interested, check out this link for more information.

And now, here is my meal plan for this week. It features recipes that I will link to the "Cook Around the Globe" event:


Sunday: Pork in Allspice (Jamaica)
              Ital Rice & Peas (Jamaica)

Monday: Spaghetti with Zucchini Mustard Sauce
                Rich Rasta Brownies (Jamaica)

Tuesday: Grilled Chicken Adobo (Puerto Rico)
                Arroz con Gandules (Puerto Rican Rice & Peas)

Wednesday: Herring in Yogurt Sauce

Thursday: Bermuda-Burger

Friday: Long WE in NYC


Go to Menu Plan Monday to check out lots of other meal plans and ideas for this week's dinners.

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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Jamaica: Pork in Allspice and Ital Rice & Peas

Today, I started to explore some Caribbean recipes for the "Cook Around the Globe" event. I am finally going to prepare some recipes from my Caribbean cookbook "Culinaria - The Caribbean. A Culinary Discovery". I have owned this cookbook for over ten years. From time to time I would flip through it and look at some recipes but I never got around to actually cook anything from it. I found this really great sounding recipe for pork in allspice - and I just had to try it out. Allspice is one of my favorite spices, and I love pork. What a great combination. I greatly enjoyed preparing and eating this dish and the recipe goes right into the "make it again" box. The side dish of rice & peas is from a chapter about Rastafari cuisine in the book. It is basically a vegetarian diet, and also avoids eggs, salt, white flour, processed foods. Hmmmm, no salt. Ok, I really wanted to make this side dish but I couldn't bring myself to leave out the salt. A salt-free diet is something one has to get used to by slowly decreasing the amount of salt in one's food. I actually cooked the beans without salt but they were way too bland for my taste. To make it more authentic, I might try to add lime juice to the beans for cooking to give them some taste. That might be a good compromise. Well, anyway, what I was trying to get at is that, although "rice & beans" are a classic combination, this particular variety is usually not eaten with pork. Also, the cooking times given in the original recipe seemed way off. I cooked the beans much shorter than indicated and they still turned mushy when they were cooke with the rice. Next time, I will cook rice and beans separately and mix them when they are done.

This recipe will be linked to the "Cook Around the Globe" - August 2011 event.

   

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Vacation Pasta II: Mini-Rotelle Pasta with Tomatoes, Tuna, Olives, and Capers

This is the second recipe from our recent vacation. It is loosely based on a Puttanesca sauce but the tomatoes should stay a little firm and crunchy to add some freshness to the dish.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Vacation Pasta I: Mini-Rotelle Pasta with Yellow Bell Pepper, Ham, and Gorgonzola

When we go on vacation, we usually rent a cottage or appartment. We like to have a kitchen and not having to go out for every single meal, 3 times a day. We usually have breakfast "at home" and then either do take-out food for dinner or I cook a simple pasta dish. This and the following recipe are the two simple and quick pasta dishes I prepared during this year's vacation.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

I recently joined The Secret Recipe Club and this was the first time I participated. I was assigned Lauren's blog Healthy Indulgences. Lauren adapts regular baking/dessert recipes for a gluten-free and sugar-free diet. If you are interested in such a diet, I really recommend to check out her blog. She also has a few low-carb chicken recipes available. After perusing her blog for some time, I finally settled on baking a Healthy Grain-Free Chocolate Zucchini (or Apple) Bread. Except that I re-adapted it to "regular" ingredients. I know there are lots of recipes available for chocolate zucchini bread, but if I had chosen another one, it wouldn't have been in the spirit of the Club. The whole point is to chose a recipe from a particular blog. The result was okay. It was the first time I made any kind of zucchini bread. I think I will try again while zucchini is in season.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Pork and Bell Pepper Fajitas

I adapted this recipe from Grilled Pork Fajita Style Soft Tacos over at My Colombian Recipes. I recently found this blog and as HubbyGrouch's background is Colombian, I was very happy to have so many delicious recipes at hand to choose from when he gets a craving for home-style food. This recipe, however, was actually a guest post by the author of the blog Tomatoes on the Vine. These fajitas were very nice and easy to make. LittleGrouch loved the seasoned pork and ate quite a bit of it. (The original recipe also had onion in it, which I unfortunately forgot to add to the pepper.)


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Turkey: Lubyi Bi Zayt (Braised Green Beans with Tomatoes)

I recently mentioned HubbyGrouch's dislike of green beans. A few days after that, he drew my attention to a New York Times article about Turkish-style braised green beans and other vegetables. I read the article, the recipes sounded great, so I jumped at the opportunity to include a green bean dish in my meal plan. I found recipes in some of my cookbooks similar to those from the newspaper article. So here is my version of green beans with tomatoes. I liked the result and - somewhat to my surprise - so did HubbyGrouch. Now I know what to do when I crave green beans! I served the beans with homemade tsatsiki and flatbread.

And now, here are two blog hops that I am participating in. Both are weekly events and everybody is welcome to join in. There is no registration.

Presto Pasta Nights
Send in your pasta dish by Thursday and check out the roundup on Friday.


The Great Recipe Exchange
For this week's exchange, enter a dessert that you want to share.



Monday, August 8, 2011

Creamy Turkey Rotini

When I saw this recipe posted by Erin, over at Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts (and she refers to the original post by Lizzy on That skinny chick can bake!!!), I knew it would be good. I mean, turkey, rosemary, and cream - what a great combination! I just loved it. This recipe goes to the "do it again" box.

On another note: Check out this event "Thinking Man's Menu.. With a small prize" on The Culinary Lens. Link one of your own recipes and vote. I linked my "Oven-Roast Duck Legs and Potatoes" recipe.

I submitted this post to the Presto Pasta Nights #226 event, hosted by Simona of Briciole.


Blog Hops

The week hasn't even started and I already had to change my carefully concocted meal plan. I was going to prepare our beloved couscous salad - outside because I don't like to use the stove on a hot and humid day. Last year, I bought a small electric two-plate burner for outside summer cooking. I keep this on a small table outside. When I was placing my two pots on said burner, the table collapsed, sending the chickpeas flying - bye, bye salad. So, we ordered pizza from La Trattoria instead. We think, it's the best local pizza here (out of about 4 or 5 pizza places). Their pizza is crusty and they use just the right amount of tomato sauce and cheese. Well, I hope there won't be any more cooking accidents this week.

On another note, here are some blog hop events I am participating in. Check them out and join in the fun.

Stop by every Friday and link your favorite recipe.


Stop by on Wednesdays to share recipes.

Everyday Sisters Sharing Sundays
Stop by on Sundays and link a themed recipe.


Sunday, August 7, 2011

Meal Plan for August 6 - 12, 2011

I recently joined a few food blogger events (The Daring Kitchen, The Secret Recipe Club, Your Best Recipe). I think those events are a lot of fun and a good opportunity to connect with other food bloggers. I recently came up with my own idea for an event. I am hereby introducing "Cook Around the Globe" - the food blogger event where we learn about international cuisines simply by preparing dishes from different parts of the world. There will be a different topic each month. If you are interested, check out this link for more information.

And now, here is my meal plan for this week:


Saturday: Avocado Peach Salad with Red Bell Pepper Vinaigrette (adapted from Bon Appetit)


Tuesday: Leftovers


Thursday: Lubyi Bi Zayt (Turkish Style Green Beans with Tomatoes and Olive Oil)

Friday: "Pre-Vacation-Clean-Out-the-Fridge" Dinner


Go to Menu Plan Monday to check out lots of other meal plans and ideas for this week's dinners.

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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Avocado Peach Salad with Red Bell Pepper Vinaigrette

Here is another one of my beloved summer salads. This one is based on a recipe from Bon Appetit. I just added some more veggies, ham, and cheese to make it a full meal, rather than a side salad. I really liked the bell pepper dressing, rather than adding red bell pepper to the salad. Pureeing the pepper intensified its flavor. I thought of adding olives to the salad but I wasn't sure if it would blend in with the peaches. 


Friday, August 5, 2011

Catfish Sandwiches with Pickle Remoulade

I haven't had a fish sandwich in a really long time. In the North of Germany, they are actually considered "Fast Food" (yes, they are that common). I had some catfish in the freezer, so when I saw this recipe in Food & Wine, I just had to try it. Well, it didn't turn out as nice as I had thought. The dressing was great, though, but the fish didn't have much taste (granted, that was probably due to a sub-optimal quality of the fish and had nothing to do with the recipe), except a kind of earthy flavor which I didn't particular like. Next time, I would either sprinkle the fish with salt before dusting it with flour or mix the eggs with salt.  In addition (again my fault) I would definitely use a thinner bread next time. 


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Yellow Wax Beans with Dill Cream

I love to eat green (and yellow) beans. They are one of my favorite vegetables. Unfortunately, for HubbyGrouch, they are the opposite. He does eat them but usually not without some grumpy remark. At this time of year, beans are available fresh on farmers market in our area and I just can't help myself buying them. (I guess I just have to make a second vegetable side for HubbyGrouch.) When I searched through my recipe clippings (or rather my database thereof), I found this delicious sounding side dish recipe. And I, as well as MissChubbyCheeks) liked it a lot. HubbyGrouch's comment was that this was even worse than the regular side of green beans and that he never wanted to eat this again. Alright, just for me than. I served the beans with mashed potatoes and pork chops. For me, it would have been just fine to only serve them with potatoes. That would make a great vegetarian meal with two of my favorite ingredients.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Colombia: Bistec a la Criolla con Hogao del Caribe (Creole Beefsteak with Tomato Onion Sauce)

When I made my meal plan this week HubbyGrouch had requested a Colombian dish. We decided on this one because HubbyGrouch had never had it but it sounded yummy. And it turned out great and very tasty. This one is definitely a keeper. LittleGrouch loved it, too. I think he had the same amount of meat like us adults. He just kept asking for more, more, more.


Monday, August 1, 2011

Zucchini Radish Julienne Salad

Well, it's zucchini season, so I'll probably be posting a few recipes with that vegetable. Today's zucchini salad was very easy to eat, with everything julienned. It was quite a bit of work but definitely worth the effort.