fast eat, sweet eat, vegeterian eat

Plum rum jam

some memories of plums: the dried ones that i really didn’t like as a kid. the huge tree in my parents backyard, with red and yellow ones. all that sweet umeshuu (plum wine) in Japan. the salt and sour taste of pickled plums i’ll never understand. a so called (horrible) “plum tea”. fresh plum juice at some small place on a trip somewhere i can’t remember. and then there is this. plum and rum in one pot along with som dried figs that turned out to be a not too sweet, super quick jam.

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one small batch
6 plums
5 dried figs, cut in pieces
2 knives ends of vanilla
juice from 1/2 a lemon
1-2 tbsp Agave syrup
2 tbsp dark rum

wash the plums and cut in wedges, put in a pot together with the rest of the ingredients. simmer on low heat for approximately 40 minutes, or until it has reached jam-like consistency. adjust amount of acidity or sweetener to your liking. put the jam in a disinfected jar and let cool. serve with cheese, on the morning porridge, with your yoghurt or as a dessert together with some ice-cream. keeps for about a week in the fridge.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All rights reserved.

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any day eat, eats, fast eat, vegeterian eat

Black bean spaghetti with kale and pomegranate

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when i was i kid i loved pasta. and a really mean loved. i could eat it every single day for weeks if i was allowed. from time to time me and dad also used to make pasta together. this always ended up with the whole kitchen being heaped with tagliatelle on the dry. sometimes we’d go all the way and make tortellini,  another love of mine. i cherished these days. winding the pasta machine, hanging out in the kitchen, later serving the rest of the family this fantastic creation of ours. with loads of parmesan if i had it my way. at this that time my humble opinion was that pasta was the best invention the world had seen. i even remember writing a short paper on the subject when i was eight.

now it was a long time since i stood in a kitchen surrounded by pasta and even though i have a very weak spot for pasta carbonara that’s not how i approach weekdays today. since i don’t cook (or eat) much meat i try to fit in proteins into my meals wherever i can. and a big portion of veggie pasta doesn’t really fill that purpose, or my stomach for that matter. that’s a problem, since i love both the pasta itself and the simplicity in tossing of a bowl of spaghetti.

then, a couple of weeks ago i found something that turned my weekdays around completely. black bean pasta. yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like. pasta made from black beans, packed with proteins and satisfyingly filling. i combined this with the great kale, a new green interpretation of my dad’s pesto and pomegranate. ending up with something both beautiful to look at, comforting to eat, easy to make and incredibly tasty. people say you should be humble about your own cooking, but seriously, i’ve made this like seven times the past weeks. i promise you it’s good.

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the pasta part
200 g black bean spaghetti
6-8 leaves of kale, washed and cut into small pieces
1 big red onion, sliced
seeds from 1 pomegranate
parsley pesto (see below for recipe)
salt & 
pepper
pumpkin/sunflower seeds, toasted (was out of pumpkin seeds..)

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parsley & kale pesto
2 leaves of kale, stalks removed and cut into small pieces
one bunch of parsley, stalks removed
100 ml almonds
1 clove of garlic, minced into paste
100 g parmesan cheese, chopped
juice from 1/2 a lemon
100 ml olive oil, more if it’s too dry
1/2 tsp honey/agave syrup (optional)
1 tsp sea salt

start of by making the pesto. put all dry ingredients in a bowl mixer and mix until semi-fine. add liquids and pulse again, adding more oil if necessary. let rest for a while to allow the flavors to emerge. then adjust flavor (salt/cheese/lemon/syrup) if needed.

on to the pasta. while bringing salted water to a boil prepare the vegetables and the pomegranate. fry the onion and kale at high temperature in some olive oil while the pasta is cooking. remove frying pan from the heat and add drained pasta and just over half of the pesto and a dash of olive oil. mix well to make sure the pesto has worked it’s way into the tangle of pasta. put on plates and add a spoon or two of pomegranate seeds, some pumpkin seeds, black pepper and a shaving of fresh parmesan. indulge with more pesto close at hand.

about that pasta: in Stockholm you can find it at a couple of health-/eco stores – just have a look around. and the non-food photos is a peek from my past weekend in London.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All rights reserved.

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eats, fast eat, salad eat, vegeterian eat

Figs and lentils.

the story of the fresh fig.
so i have this problem. or maybe it’s not a problem, more of a compulsion i should say. whenever i go into a grocery store i can’t stop myself from shopping – there is always some fantastic fruit or vegetable in season.

recognize that?

this time is was figs. oh and grapes. and mango. and blueberries. anyways. instead of just buying some cashews (the reason for my leap to the store on a ten min break from studying) i ended up back at school carrying this huge bag of fruits. next time its fresh corn. or those sweet swedish apples in season right now. though, what should a girl do when being presented with all that wonderfulness? i cave in every time.
now i’m also debating getting my own fig tree. imagine that. i dream of having fresh homegrown figs with yoghurt, walnuts and honey for breakfast every day.

back to the story; my deviation from the plan resulted in quite some feast. a solo lunch feast.

Date and halloumi salad with lentils | piecefully

so this is what you do to make a feast for one.
2 fresh figs, washed and sliced
two handfulls of baby spinach
one small red onion, in wedges
50 ml beluga lentils (the trick is to cook them with a piece of bouillon instead of salt)
70-100g halloumi, in pieces (or good goats cheese…)
almonds, toasted and chopped (or walnuts!)
crema di balsamico
fresh thyme

if i had had walnuts and goats cheese at hand i would have opted for that, but almonds and halloumi work just as awesomely. put the figs and onion in an oven tray and bake at 225°c for ca 10 minutes (keep an eye on them – you don’t want the figs too soft). whilst doing this, cook the lentils according to directions and fry the halloumi (if using goats cheese there is no need for preparation). arrange vegetables, lentils, figs and cheese on a plate – top of with thyme, almonds and crema di balsamico. then enjoy. i did.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All rights reserved.

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any day eat, eats, fast eat, Japan, salt eat

The simple mushroom soba bowl

so it’s time for my next favorite noodle. feels like that’s about what i have time to cook at the moment – school’s started.. even though this means that autumn is on it’s way i feel like there’s still room for summer, trying to enjoy the late summer treats the nature offers. stockholm is fantastic right now and i spent my saturday in the sun on the water, indulging every bit of it. by the way, if you want to add some proteins i’d go for a few slices of fried tofu.

By the temple | piecefully  in Kyoto.
Mushroom soba bowl | piecefully

the bowl
japanese soba (buckwheat) noodles enough for one person
4 big mushrooms (I used portabella and champingons)
1/4 of a leek
a handfull of baby spinache
toasted and ground sesame seeds (with shell)
sea salt & pepper

the dressing
1 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp rice vinegar
a finger tip of wasabi

this is truly very simple. start by mixing the ingredients for the dressing and set aside. slice the mushrooms and the leek and fry them in some oil while cooking the noodles.when the noodles are done rinse briefly in cold water. mix noodles, mushrooms and greens top with sesame seeds and season with the dressing.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All rights reserved.

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Peas and music.

IMG_9022  IMG_8951  Green pea pesto | piecefully

when i got home from gothenburg on sunday afternoon i was super hungry, but had hardly nothing in the fridge to work with. so this is what i whipped up. originally i though of doing something with edamame (hence the japanese somen noodles) but i realised that green peas was the only thing in my freezer, so i went with those instead. and as for the noodles – they’re one of my favorites. oh and by the way, way out west was magical, especially the three hours of pure happiness we experienced under this giant disco ball during Giorgio Moroder’s daytime session.

easy pea noodles
(good for one)

ca 1 dl (100 ml) green peas, fresh or thawed
a small glove of garlic
grated parmesan cheese
fresh parsley
a dash of olive oil
pepper
sea salt
japanese somen noodles enough for one person (soba or angel hair spaghetti works fine as well)

put everything except the noodles in a mixer and season to your liking with parsley, parmesan and pepper. cook the noodles for 1,5 min in boiling water, drain and rinse briefly in cold water to prevent them from sticking together. mix in the pea pesto and serve up.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All rights reserved.

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Sandwiches: same base, two versions

i’m back in stockholm after a week up north. though just for a couple of days before i travel down south. so i’ll keep it short this time. this is either for when you’re alone and really post-workout hungry. or when it’s two of you and you crave a savory light dinner. or just make one of ’em for a snack.

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from the mountain side. “slåtterblomma” in swedish

Caribbean  sandwich | piecefully Mediterranean sandwich | piecefully
the base
2 slices of sourdough bread
olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
100 g greek goats cheese (or feta)
2 spoons of ricotta cheese
6 cherry tomatoes
a couple of slices of red pepper
2 handfuls of red chard

Mediterranean sandwich | piecefully
for the mediterranean
1/2 a aubergine, in thin slices
1/2 a red onion
fresh thyme

Caribbean  sandwich | piecefully
for the caribbean
1/2 a avocado
1/2 a mango
fresh parsley

it’s pretty straight forward but just incase:
start of with the aubergine. slice it in thin slices and put on a tray. salt them and let sit until water has emerged, then dry them of and roast in the oven at 230°c for about 10-15 min. mash together the ricotta and the goat’s cheese. slice up the vegetables and rinse the chard. heat up a generous dash of olive oil in a frying pan, add some sea salt and a garlic clove that you’ve crushed with the broad side of the knife. fry the bread on both sides until it’s crisp and has some colour.  spread out the cheese on the bread and stack the vegetables on top.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All right reserved.

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eats, fast eat, Japan, sweet eat

Coconut and yoghurt ice-cream

if you have an ice-cream maker at hand – this is a super fast after dinner treat. (i make up reasons to bring out mine)

Cherries | piecefullyCoconut and yoghurt ice-cream | piecefully Cherry blossoms | piecefully Coconut and yoghurt ice-cream | piecefully

perfect for 2 people
1 can of coconut milk (400 ml)
1/2 dl (50 ml) turkish/greek yoghurt
1 1/2 star anise, pounded in a mortar (or why not caradamom?)
2 tbsp honey
coconut flakes
cocoa nibs
cherries, for serving

put the can of coconut milk in the freezer for 30-60 min (or keep it in the fridge for a couple of hours). then scoop out the creamy part, leaving the water out. stir together the coconut cream, yoghurt, star anise and honey (flavor with more honey if you want it sweeter). pour into the ice-cream maker and when almost done add some cocoa nibs and coconut flakes. put the ice-cream in an airtight container and keep in the freezer for 1-2 hours. i’m afraid keeping it for too long in the freezer will make this ice-cream too icy… is best served freshly whipped up. with some cherries on top. the star anise just gives of a hint of flavor and the yoghurt a nice sour tang.

All content by © Sofia Hellsten 2010-2013. All right reserved.

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