It’s raining and cookies and cake and…

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SNOW!

Yes, it has been a while but here we are. 🙂 The last two weeks have just been crazy busy, finally it’s weekend again.
It has started to rain and the bad dry and dusty air in Trondheim has changed into a more breathable gas. Woohoo! With the rain came the wind and storm and some chilly air. And the weather forecast shows snow for the next days. Believe it or we’ll tell if it actually snowed. Otherwise we’ll hang in and celebrate the arrival of the spring. That’s how I’d started the new post yesterday. Now, just a day later we have 10cm snow. :O

Taken 24th of February 2014

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Yesterday morning around 10am (15th of March 2014)

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Our munchkin has started to eel over the floor and to surf in his stroller. If he isn’t tired enough to sleep he wants to look out into the world. His favorite toys right now aren’t those toys which have cost hundreds of dollars -no, a big wooden kitchen spoon, my measuring tape and his hair brush are right now the most exciting things you can think of.

Yesterday after a play date with a body from the swimming class we went to the mall to get a gift card and to the baby shop and well…they’d gotten new clothes in e.g. from Denmark. And half an hour later we’d found a body, jammies and an overall and our wallet was 200$ lighter. Which wasn’t actually too bad.

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And do you know what’s really dumb? – When you sit at the office, get ready to pump the breast milk for your baby and it’s just not working because you threw the valve of the pump into the trash…. Finally after three long days a new pump arrived and I don’t have to fear anymore at work that my boobs which transform into melons might explode any time soon if not emptied…

I’ve been knitting a penguin jumper which is going to be sent to Australia and I hope to finish another one or two to send. At the moment I’m knitting on a baby beanie for the babies in Syria. That’s going to be sent to doctors without borders.

Here the link to the penguin jumpers. If you should have some old wool, some knitting needles and a couple of hours of time…get going! 🙂

http://penguinfoundation.org.au/assets/Wildlife-rehabilitation/penguin-jumper-pattern-2014.pdf

The penguin jumper

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Kitchenwise we weren’t too busy. We made cookies and rum balls, chili and cornbread, a Norwegian cake and waffles and wok veggies.

During the next weeks we are going to add a new page called “recipes” where we are going to post the links to the recipes in a list. This way it should be easier to find them again. Until then we have tried to categorize them and add tags to each post since January 2014.

Rum balls

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For the rum balls I used this nice cake which M had prepared for me and it was great. Rum balls are often a left over treat made with whatever cake is around and has maybe even gotten a bit stale. So it really needs to turn into something before it’s over the hill.

Rum balls

  • 500gr cake (e.g. marble cake, chocolate cake, pound cake etc)
  • 100gr jam (e.g. raspberry)
  • 50gr dutch cocoa
  • 5 drops rum essence or 1-2 tsp rum (if you like it stronger, add a bit more)
  • optional: dark chocolate
  • chocolate sprinkles or coconut flakes or whatever you like best for decoration
  • Make fine crumbs out of your cake, you can either use your hands or a food processor. Then add your jam, the cocoa and the rum essence. Mix it very well. Form balls out of the dough mix, press them firmly together and roll in chocolate sprinkles or your favorite decoration. Sometimes those sprinkles don’t want to stick that well, then you could dip them first in melted dark chocolate before you roll them in your favorite sprinkles. This extra coating with chocolate keeps the moisture nicely inside.
  • When you are done, keep them in an airtight box in the refrigerator.
  • I used raspberry jam but other jams work too, but they shouldn’t have big chunks.
  • Be careful with the rum essence / rum. Increase the amount drop by drop and keep in mind that the flavor will be getting stronger over the time due to the infusion of the rum / rum essence.

Some like those rum balls small, others prefer bigger ones. How do you like them best?

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Another treat we prepared where some crisp salted oatmeal cookies with white chocolate adapted from smittenkitchen.

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 200gr soft butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract or 1/2 tsp ground vanilla
  • 2.5 cups rolled oats (the big ones, not the instant/quick ones)
  • 6 ounces quality white chocolate,  coarsely chopped
  • flaky sea salt for sprinkling
  • Mix flour, salt, baking powder and – soda and oats in a bowl.
  • In a second bowl cream the butter with the sugars until fluffy, add the egg and beat for a moment longer, while still beating, add the vanilla.
  • Blend the flour mix in.
  • Preheat your oven to 175C and place parchment paper on a baking tray.
  • Place 2 tsps of cookie dough on the parchment paper and leave enough space between each dough pile. Press them a little bit down and sprinkle each with a few flakes of sea salt.
  • Bake for 13-16min until dark gold brown. Let cool down on a rack. Keep the cookies in an airtight container.

Then we had invited two friends over for a bean chili which has so far always worked. BUT! Yeah, but this time I had chili powder from the asian store and not the usual stuff in a jar which is mixed with all kind of other spices and the chili kind of weak… The recipe calls for 1/3 cup of chili and well, I’d my worries our chili might be too strong but I added the amount anyway and woooo hooooooo it was so f****** hot that we had to prepare another batch and spice it up with the dragon version which meant that 5! heaped usual spoons were enough to make it hot. M and his friend H ate a couple of meals of the dragon version. I bow down before them.

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The cornbread on the other hand came out as planned and oh, it was so good. M spread butter on it, I ate it plain. For my taste it’s more like cake but it’s oh, so good.

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Cornbread

  • 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup polenta flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup lightly packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup canned corn, drained
  • 1/4 cup of milk
  • 3/4 cup of plain yoghurt
  • 113gr (1 stick) very soft or melted butter
  • Preheat the oven to 250C (400F) and butter an oven pan.
  • Mix all the dry ingredients. In a food processor mix the other ingredients except the butter.
  • Add the wet into the dry ingredients and blend shortly, then let the butter follow.
  • Pour the batter in your oven pan, smoothen the surface and bake for 25-35min. Test with a cake tester if it’s done. Let cool for 10min, take out of the pan and let cool until completely cool. Serve warm – lukewarm with butter. Then it’s best.

One day we had a lovely meeting with our neighbors for coffee and cake. The time just flew by and everyone went with a full belly home. We ate Gaufres de Liege with warm sour cherries and whipped cream. And since those were so good, we prepared them again when I visited us.

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On Thursday then I made an attempt to finally prepare the Søsterkake which I’d marked in my Norwegian cooking book for quite some time already. It’s a yeasted cake with cardamom. It’s usually eaten with butter or brunost.

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Søsterkake (for 3 loafs) from En smak av Norge

  • 500gr butter
  • 500gr sugar
  • 1l milk
  • 50gr yeast
  • 1.4 kg all-purpose flour
  • 3 drops almond essence
  • 2 tsp cardamom
  • 2 tsp vanilla sugar
  • 250gr raisins
  • Melt the butter in a big pot, add the sugar and milk and let it stay until it’s only lukewarm. Then add the yeast and mix well.
  • Butter your 3 loaf forms (25cm long) and dust them with bread crumbs.
  • Mix the flour with the cardamom, salt, raisins and almond essence. Cover with cling film and let it sit in a cool spot until the dough has doubled its volume. Then punch it with your fist and knead it once more.

After 4 hours in our really cold refrigerator (+2C)

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  • Divide the dough evenly between the 3 loaf pans and let it sit for another 30 – 45min. Preheat your oven to 180C.

I used one big and one small loaf pan

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  • Bake the cakes on the lowest position in your oven or until the cake tester come out clean approx 50-55min. If they turn too brown before they are done, cover the loafs with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  • After you have taken them out of the oven, wait another 10min before you take them out of the loaf pans. The crumb is very fragile and they might break apart otherwise.
  • It stays fresh for several days in a cake container or you can freeze it.

That’s our dinner to go when we don’t have a lot of time and our tummies are empty and crave food. We always find in our refrigerator: broccoli, carrots and often sprouts too.

Wok veggies with Thai noodles

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Cut your veggies into even sized chunks, carrots in Julienne cut (thin sticks), heat up your wok and start with the veggies which need longest (broccoli). Add those first, after a few minutes continue with the other veggies from the ones which need longest to the ones which are fastest to cook. Add the new veggies in the middle of the wok, while you place the other ones in a ring around the new ones. The higher you go up the edge of the wok, the colder it gets so. It’s hottest in the middle.

While those are frying, boil water. Break your Thai noodles dried rice noodles) in pieces and soak them in the boiling water. Let them sit until they are done, about 3min. Drain and set aside.

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Shortly before all your veggies are done season them with: cayenne pepper, a pinch of sugar, soy sauce, cumin, coriander, curry, pepper, salt (be careful with the salt, the soy sauce is very salty) or whatever you feel like. If you need some liquid for cooking use broth or a little bit of juice like orange or grape.

Final assembling: add your noodles to your veggies, let them get warm again, stir well and serve. We serve it with brown rice.

Munchkin has had his first real lunch today: penne rigate with tomato sauce and cheese. The penne cooked without salt until completely dead and the tomato sauce spiced with a fried onion, fresh basil and oregano. And then everything went into the food processor and an orange goo came out. He liked it.

Otherwise he really goes for kiwi. I prepared a new batch of mashed fruits for him: mango with pears, kiwis and banana. 🙂

On Sunday a friend is coming over for pizza, either baked on a stone or a deep dish one and I’ll bake a toast. I’ll post the recipe after the next trip.

Right, did I mention? We are going on a trip. On Friday just over the weekend to Nice in France to tank some warmth and visit a friend. So sunny pictures *cross fingers* are coming in the next post.

Have a great week!

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