Pumpkin Pudding

It’s pumpkin time and this recipe is an easy way for a tasty recipe and yummy dessert.

I used fresh pumpkin from the garden, which I previously baked und the microwave (10 minutes at max) and blended after cooling down.

How to prepare caramel sauce directly into the mold; Preheat oven to 200°C. Lightly grease your mold with butter. Scatter 50 g brown sugar to the baking dish and 2 tablespoons butter spreading evenly. Place in the oven until you see it begins to turn lightly darker. Remove from the oven and whisk shortly. Return to the oven and continue to bake a few minutes until a brown color is reached (be careful, do not burn it). Let cool in the mold.

Pumpkin Pudding

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: medium
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Ingredients:

  • Butter or margarine for the mold
  • 4 tablespoons caramel sauce for the mold (quantity to taste)
  • 500 g pumpkin puree
  • 75 ml olive oil
  • 100 g flour
  • 20 g conrnstarch
  • 100 g sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (quantity to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon gingerbread spices (quantity to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

Preparation:

  1. Prepare the baking mold: grease with the butter or margarine and pour the caramel sauce
  2. In a big bowl blend very well all the ingredients together.
  3. Pour the ingredients in the prepared baking mold
  4. Bake in the oven at 170°C for 45 minutes or until golden.
  5. Remove from the oven and let cool down completely.
  6. Invert on a plate for serving.

Xortopita – Greek Greens Pie

Wild greens constitute one of the greatest capital of Cretan cuisine. No one knows exactly how many different species of plants are used for human consumption and helped these people to survive during wars and occupation times.  I read that more than 120 herbs from the coastal zones to the higher mountain regions have been identified and counted.

Picking wild greens is a very enjoyable activity and the prepared meals are super healthy food!

For this recipe I used self-seeded Swiss chard form last year who is sprouting here and there in my vegetable garden. A great gift form the nature.

For the “Cretan” flavourful taste, I added mint and dill and some feta.

Usually these greens pies are prepared in the oven and the dough used for this is the filo.

One of the specialties of Sfakia are the “Sfakianopites”:  round flat pies filled with local mizithra cheese, pan-fried (without oil or butter) and then, served with a generous drizzle of Cretan honey.

For this pies I used the technique of the sfakianopites and worked very well.

For the dough I used my sourdough recipe which, thanks to the long ferment time, turns very elastic for rolling it out. https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/2018/05/07/basic-bread-recipe/

For the yogurt sauce see: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/2013/02/18/mint-and-dill-yogurt-sauce/

Xortopita - Greek Greens Pie

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: medium
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Ingredients:

Dough

  • ½ cup sourdough starter (or ¼ cup water + ¼cup flour + 1/4 teaspoon dry yeast)
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt

Filling

  • 300 greens (I used the green part of Swiss chards)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 spring onions, finely chopped, tender green part as well
  • 3 tablespoons cup finely chopped fresh spearmint
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped dill
  • 200 g crumbled feta
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Prodecure:

  1. Combine the sourdough starter with the water and the first cup of flour for the first rising into a big bowl, cover and let sit until spongy. The time depends of the kind of yeast (if using sourdough starter often I combine them the evening before or early in the morning) and the temperature.
  2. Add the the other two cups of flour and the salt for the second rising knead shortly and let lit for about 20 minutes. Now knead again until smooth. I perform this step directly in the bowl using a dough spatula and folding over the bread until done. Let rise a few hour until doubled. During this time prepare the filling.
  3. Wash the greens and drain very well. Then slice them.
  4. Heat the oil and fry the onion until translucent. Add the greens and cook stirring from time to time until the liquid is almost adsorbed.
  5. Add the herbs and combine well.
  6. Add the feta and season to taste with salt and pepper. Place on in a bowl to cool down.
  7. When the dough is soft, divide it into 6 pieces. Make 6 portions of filling. Note: you may make also more pieces/portions and make smaller pitas.
  8. Roll out the dough to the size of about 15 cm on a well-floured surface. Place the filling on it and carefully close the filling into the dough trying to exclude as much air as possible.
  9. Dust well with flour and slowly roll this out to the desired size. I made round of about 25 cm. Do not staple them, but place them on a well-floured surface until cooking time.  Best if you would in team and somebody helps you the roast the pitas while you roll them out.
  10. Heat a skillet and roast dry on both sides until browned. Note: We decided to cook them on the open fire.
  11. Serve if warm with yogurt sauce.
  12. Leftovers may be kept in the fried for a few day or be frozen.

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

Melt in the Mouth Orange Cake

I made this cake for the first time many years ago, but it was so delicious that my family did not forget this melting in the mouth cake, so that they asked me for this a few times again.

Melt in the Mouth Orange Cake

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

Cake:

  • 3 cups flour (about 400 g)
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder (1 envelope)
    • 1 pinch salt
    • 4 tablespoons butter or margarine (about 55 g)
    • 1 cup sugar (about 200 g)
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 cup fresh orange juice (about 200 ml)
    • 1 orange zest

Filling and frosting:

  • 4 tablespoons butter (about 55 g)
    • ¼ cups fresh orange juice (about 50 ml)
    • 1 orange zest
    • 3 cups powdered sugar (about 375 g)

Procedure:

  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F.
  2. Grease and dust with flour a 24-26 cm (9-10 inches) round cake pan. (Springform).
  3. Sift together in a bowl the dry ingredient (flour, baking powder and salt).
  4. In a large mixing bowl (or food processor), cream the butter, then slowly add the sugar, blending well. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each is added.
  5. In another bowl, mix together the orange juice & zest.
  6. Add this orange mixture spoon by spoon to the butter/sugar/egg mixture beating constantly.
  7. Step by step add the dry mixture until well incorporated.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared cake mold bake for 40-45 minutes or until through (I recommend the toothpick test).
  9. Cool in the pans on a wire rack for about 15 minutes, then remove from the pans and cool completely.
  10. Slice the cake into 2 layers.
  11. For the frosting, melt the butter, then combine it with the orange juice and the zest, beating well. Slowly add the powdered sugar and beat well until smooth.
  12. Place the bottom cake layer on a serving plate and using, using about 1/3 of the frosting, frost the first layer. Put the second layer upside right on the first layer. Frost the top and the sides of the cake, or only the top allowing some of the frosting to run down the sides.

Autor: https://artandkitchen.wordpress.com/

Walk to Castle “Burg Rotberg” near Mariastein

Mariastein Abbey, nestled into the lovely landscape of the gentle Leimental valley, is the most important place of pilgrimage in Switzerland after Einsiedeln Abbey.

Only a few Kilometers from the Abbey you will find other interesting places can find 7 castles around Burg in Leimental, some of them are actually ruins, but some are fully restored and in use.

One of this castles is the Burg Rotberg, actually know a the
Mariastein Youth Hostel
a real special place in a fairy place.

As we visited this place, the hostel was closed, but we got the chance to visit the entrance and the wonderful landscape.

Day 38 Stay at Home or In the Garden: Iris

 

Gardening is wonderful relaxing way especially when you find your way to keep it easy.

As we started with the garden, we did not really know which plants are best suitable for the soil and which one would grow and bring us the best without spending a lot of time and money in order to have a nice garden.

In our case in spring, iris flowers make our garden beautiful with almost no work and we know that next year they will be here again!

In the photos: Iris Pseudacorus (Yellow Water Iris) and  Bearded Iris (Iris germanica).

 

Day 35 Stay at Home or In the Garden: Alpine Newts

 

In my privious post Day 30 Stay at Home or In the Garden: On and in the Water

we could present you the fist pics of the life in our garden.

This post is for our fist video of newts underwater, it’s not the best video, but when we will have the opportunity, we will add more photos or videos. It’s really amazing and it makes me happy to seat near the water and discover what’s going on…

 

Day 32 Stay at Home or In the Garden: Four-Leaf Clovers

Today I would like to explain you how to find 4 leaf clovers!

Since I was a child, I was used to find 4-leaf clovers again and again! My method was to spot the angles between the leaves (120 degrees for 3-leaf clovers and 90 degrees for 4 leaf clovers).  Most 3/4 leaf clovers have a light part in the leaves; in these case the 3-leave clovers show triangles and 4-leaf clovers a square!

For the other ones (plain green leaves) I see a cross into the 4-leaf clovers and in this way I saw the difference.

Another tip is: if you find one, look near to this, very ofter the genetic mistake produce more of them so that the probability to find more is much higher! You may also make yourself a note of the place and after one week or so, check again the same place!

More and more you look after 4-leaf clovers, more and more you will be able to find some in a few minutes!

According to tradition, finding a four-leaf clover brings luck to the person who discovers it, in my case it’s only fun, but I love to dry from time to time some of them for making good wishes cards.

I’m lucky, very lucky to have a garden, if you don’t have this possibility now, you may exercise virtually and have fun with these links:

Find the 4 Leaf Clover 🍀

Can you find the four leaf clover? Good luck

How to find a 4-leaf clover

Find A Four Leaf Clover

Two 4-leaf clovers in the picture

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Day 31 Stay at Home or In the Garden: Busy Bees

It’s high season now for our bees! Plenty of flowers around and a lot of sunshine.

It’s almost one month we did not have a real rain, therefore we were afraid that the nectar production of the blooming fruit trees, could be too slow.

We are lucky, now our little bees have enough to do!

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Day 30 Stay at Home or In the Garden: On and in the Water

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It was time to arrange a little bit the garden and the almost abandoned pond came out to light again and, now after 4 weeks almost without rain, it needed the addition of some fresh water.

It was a more than pleasant surprise to see how much life we could notice on and in the water; the alpine newts are my favourites. I hope I will learn how to catch a few more pics of them.