As the week before it didn’t snow and the weather forecast doesn’t show any snow for the next three weeks. What a strange winter. But to get a feeling for snow and doing what we usually do during winter weekends: skiing which is followed by a visit of the ski cabin to warm up with coffee and cinnamon buns, we went to the ski cabin without having skied, had a coffee without having cold hands and eating sweet buns without having burned those calories before. We just enjoyed the blue sky and sun shine. 🙂
At the same last weekend I was really craving those thick sticky waffles caramelized on the outside and with sugar lumps inside. They call them waffles from Bruxelles here even though they are actually from Liege. I don’t know how often I’ve already tried to find the right recipe but finally I found it and oh, yeah, we don’t have the right waffle maker and we didn’t have the right sugar: sucre grain perlé but they were so good. We’d brought hail sugar which is more or less the same sugar they use in Belgium just much smaller and our waffle maker is a usual one. Not the one with the deep pattern, but if you hold the lid down for a moment in the beginning and make sure they aren’t baking too fast due to too high temperature. Ending up being black on the outside and raw on the inside, you can do it.
The recipe for Gaufres de Liège (for approx 18)
- 750gr all-purpose flour
- 270ml milk, lukewarm
- 3 eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- 25gr fresh yeast
- pinch of salt
- 1 tsp vanilla sugar or 1/2 tsp ground vanilla
- 400gr soft butter
- 400gr hail sugar (best: sucre grain perlé)
- Mix all ingredients well, except the butter and sugar. Let the dough sit for 30min. Then add first the butter and mix it in before you do the same with the sugar.
- Divide the dough in 100gr pieces and let them rest for another 15min.
- Heat your waffle maker, grease it and bake each waffle for about 3min. Take out and let cool down on a cooling rack.
It’s a dough not usual waffle batter
Thursday afternoon we didn’t have any plans so I prepared those pear and hazelnut muffins which Smittenkitchen had prepared a few weeks ago. The recipe calls for hazelnuts and buttermilk. I didn’t have hazelnuts cause they are often rotten inside or rancid when you buy them here. But we have walnuts. Those really good ones we have brought from California. So I used those instead and for the buttermilk I mixed 3/4 plain yoghurt with 1/4 milk.
I added ground ginger and dialed down the sugar and let the batter sit for 5min after mixing cause it kind of develops and the muffins you get out are actually much nicer and have a higher dome than without it. (I think I read it at Cook’s Illustrated).
Here is my version of Deb Perelman’s pear and hazelnut muffins:
Walnut pear chocolate muffins
- 2 medium sized pears, peeled, cored and shredded (you need about 250gr)
- 85gr butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 75gr dark brown sugar
- 240ml buttermilk or 3/4 cup plain yoghurt and 1/4 cup milk
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 75gr rolled oats
- 125gr all-purpose flour
- 60gr whole wheat flour
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp baking paper
- 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 120gr toasted and chopped walnuts
- 85gr dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
- Heat the oven to 425F and line a muffin tray with 12 muffin cases.
- Mix the grated pears with the eggs, vanilla, butter, sugar.
- In another bowl mix the dry ingredients and spices. Keep about 1/2 cup of chopped nuts for later.
- Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ones. Be thorough but don’t overmix. Let the batter sit for 5 min.
- Fill the cases to 3/4 with batter, then sprinkle some chopped nuts on top.
- Turn the heat down to 375F and bake your muffins for 20-25min. Use a cake tester.
- Let them cool out completely first for 10min in the muffin tray, then on a cooling rack.
- They are perfect for freezing or keep well for about 2 days in an airtight box.
Then yesterday I had way too much energy and my free day. So I got up at 6am, prepared a dough for pretzel rolls and went to the gym for a round on the treadmill. In the meanwhile my three men were sound asleep. They got up when M’s omelette was ready, the buns were baked, the dishwasher emptied and the breakfast table set. 🙂
- 500gr all-purpose flour
- 42gr yeast
- 20gr soft butter
- 1 tsp sugar
- 270ml water, lukewarm
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 tbsp baking soda and 250ml boiling water
- shredded cheese, coarse salt or seeds
- Mix the yeast with the sugar and the water. In a medium large bowl mix the flour with the yeast-mix, salt and butter.
- Then divide the dough in 8 equally big pieces and roll to buns.
- Boil 250ml of water and mix with the baking soda, it’s going to bubble, so have a big enough bowl.
- Drown each bun in the baking soda – water. Take out, place on a baking tray with parchment paper, cut a cross with a sharp knife into the bun and sprinkle with either cheese, seeds or coarse salt.
- Slide the baking tray into the cold oven, set the temperature to 200C and bake for 15-20min.
M went out for a beer with some co-workers. Well, we’d thought that we have gotten used to higher prices but this time they really hit it. They were supposed to pay between 108kr to 120kr for 0,3l of beer (almost 20 dollars). After a short time at this bar they changed to the local mini-brewery where a beer is only 10 dollars.
I met a good friend today and Theo got a small drinking cup from Australia and I got a beautiful bag. 🙂
And tonight we had something fast and simple: fried egg-rice with fried sprouts and carrots.
We have gotten further on the goo side. Munchkin loves the hot rice cereals for dinner and this week I’d prepared mashed carrots with turnips and tarragon and basil. Yessss! But what he likes even better are pureed fruits like pears with pineapple or apple and pineapple.
Cooked pineapple and pears
We aren’t inaccurate when we prepare hot cereals from the grocery store…
Our friend from Nice who we are going to visit in March is starting a new job on Monday and we are all excited with her. She’s changing sides from testing the black box to actually developing whats inside the black box. Have a very good start!
I’m promising tomorrow I’m going to post our bacalao recipe.
Have a great Sunday and take care!
As promised here our recipe for Bacalao
- 2 onions, peeled and chopped
- 2 fennel bulbs, washed and chopped
- 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
- about 400gr of Klippfisk (dried and salted cod)
- 3 packs tomatoes
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- spices: basil, oregano, tarragon, curry, chili, sugar, salt, pepper
Depending on the Klipfisk you have, you have to start x days watering it before you can actually start with the preparation of the Bacalao. A thumb rule they give here is 1-2 days per cm of Klipfisk. So if your Klippfisk is about 1,5cm thick, water it for 3 days. We usually water ours for 3 days and it has always worked out. I use the biggest bowl we have and place a colander in the bottom, place all the pieces of the dried cod in it and fill it with cold water. Cover it with cling film and put it into the refrigerator. For the next three days, I change the water each day. Since I have a colander in the bowl, the salt can collect on the bottom of the bowl and rinsed out when I change the water.
After three days you can start to cook.
Take a nice big pot and heat about 3 tbsp of oil, fry the onions until they get translucent. Then add your other veggies and fry them for a moment. Add the tomato paste and mix everything well. Now add your crushed tomatoes and herbs, the curry and chili. Turn the heat on medium low and let it simmer for 30min.
Now to your watered Klippfisk: rinse it under cold water and dry it off with kitchen paper. Take a close feel with your fingers of each piece to find remaining fish bones. Pull them out and cut the fish in 3x3cm and add them to your sauce. Let it simmer with the fish for another 10min.
Final steps: Season your bacalao with salt, pepper and sugar.
It’s perfect for freezing or heating up the next day.
We usually serve bacalao with mashed potatoes. Some people prepare the bacalao with potatoes in the sauce. This way you don’t need to prepare any kind of potatoes but you can’t freeze it.
Have a great week!