Liebster Award

wpid-liebsteraward
Maulshri Mitra from Joie de Vivre  nominated my blog for the “Liebster Award”. Thank you for your nomination and also for your very nice blog. It’s an inspiration for all of us.

This award is to bring lesser-known blogs into prominence so you have to answer 10 questions about yourself and then disclose the name of the people you will be nominating. So here we go…..

1.Why did you start your blog?
I started blogging to improve my cooking for my little baby and to help other food bloggers with food photography.
2. Favourite cuisine?
French

3. Drinks or Desserts?
Desserts

4. If you could only watch one tv show for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
Too hard. I have too many!!!!!!!

5. What is your favorite meal to cook?
Hummus

6. What is your favorite book?
Jane Austin – Pride and prejudice

7. Have you ever been out of the country? 
Yes

8. What was your first post on your blog?
Apple Compote

9. Which of your childhood memory is the prettiest one, please brief?
Too many ….

10. Which incident has touched you most in your life?
The birth of my son I couldn’t be more blessed!

The nominations for this award will be:

1 Ruhlman photography

2 La Petite paniere

3 Love life eat

4 Frugal Feeding

5 Food by Linda

 

 

Green smoothie

green smoothie

When you’re making your first few green smoothies, don’t just throw things in the blender. Chances are, it’ll taste nasty if you wing it right out of the gate. To save you a few smoothie-fails, bust out those cute little measuring cups and follow this simple formula: 60% fruits to 40% leafy greens.

Add naturally sweet fruits to any smoothie that tastes bitter or a bit too “green.” By sticking with naturally sweet fruits like bananas, mango, apples, pears or pitted dates, we avoid artificial sweeteners and processed sugars.

You can blend your green smoothie the night before and store it in your fridge (up to 2 days). Use an airtight lid to limit oxidation and keep it as fresh as possible. When ready to drink, give it a good shake before you open.

Ingredients:

- 2 cups baby spinach (fresh)

- 1 banana  (medium peeled frozen ripe, sliced)

- 1 kiwi fruit  (peeled and chopped)

- 1 tea spoon chia seeds

- 1 tea spoon hemp seeds

- 1/2 tea spoon flax seeds

- 1 small cucumber (peeled and chopped)

- 1 medium apple (peeled and chopped)

- 1/4 avocado (peeled and chopped)

- 150 ml water

Directions:

Place the seeds, vegetables and fruits in the blender in this order. Process until smooth and then add the water. Enjoy!

smoothie

 

 

Food Lighting II

setup1

 

Before I set up the shot I have a story in mind. A story which at the end of the shoot I have to see it in my photos. Sometimes inspirations comes during the shoot, but most of the time, I have already the story in my head.

I wanted a 45 degree camera angle on the subject placed on black background, which was a old black tray. In the back and the right of the subject I have a 20 cm black background.  Camera is on a tripod and set to F/6.3, 1/4 sec and ISO-100. The light here comes from my left side and back from 2 walls made of windows. A cloudy day, made it perfect for what I had in mind.

Most of the time I use natural light. I have to work fast, but food has a great texture.

So, is easy and simple. Just need to look for the light or adjust the one that you have. Have fun!

 

Mucenici – Moldavian 8 shapes

The name ‘mucenici’ (pronounced moo-cheh-neech)comes from ‘mucenicie’ which means martyrdom in Romanian. The story of the Saint Martyrs(Mucenici) which gave their life for believing in Jesus Christ and for spreading Christianism is sad, but inspiring.

mucenici

The martyrdom of the 40 Saints was very important for Christianity. They were soldiers in the Roman army, but of different nationalities: Greek, Armean and Roman. It was around the year 308 when the Roman emperor Licinus was ruling. They were in Armenia when their commander, Agricolae, found out about their Christian beliefs and asked them to give up to their beliefs and change to Roman idols.

The soldiers wouldn’t do that so the commander ordered their torture by throwing rocks at them. Agricolae even tried to bribe the soldiers with expensive gifts, but it was useless. So he ordered them to be drowned in a frozen lake. It was Spring and still freezing, but while the soldiers were in that lake, praying, a miracle happened and the lake got heated and each got an aura above their heads, so they were saved. However, they were tortured to death afterwards and their bodies were burned and thrown in the lake.

The soldiers’ martyrdom has been celebrated ever since in our country as they became Saints Martyrs through this miracle. For their mentioning, we cook some delicious cookies, which have the same name of ‘mucenici’.  They are cooked differently depending on which of our geographical zones they are made. But all must have the shape of the number 8. This 8-shape symbolizes a human figure, of the Saints.

Also, on this day, tradition says that men should drink or just taste wine out of 40 glasses, which symbolizes the blood of the martyrs. Here is the recipe. Enjoy!

Ingredients (makes about 20):
For the dough:

- 1 fresh yeast cube (42 g)

- 2-3 tablespoons warm water

- 500 g flour (plus extra for kneading)

- 100 g sugar

- 2 eggs

- 250 ml milk

- 70 ml sunflower oil (or melted butter)

For brushing:

- 1 egg yolk

For the syrup:

- 200 ml water

- 40 ml orange liquor (or amaretto or rum)

- zest of one orange, grated

- 7-8 tablespoons sugar

For serving:

- some honey and ground walnuts to serve

Directions:


Break the fresh yeast into crumbles in a bowl. Pour the warm water over it and mix well. Let it rest for 15 minutes. In a food processor mix the flour and sugar. Pour the yeast mix over them. Mix slowly until even, then gradually incorporate the eggs (lightly beaten before this step), the oil and milk, a little at a time, until you have an even dough. Let it rest for 2 hours until very puffed:. Put it on a flour-covered surface and knead it, adding maybe a bit more flour until you have a dough not so sticky (that you can work with). Preheat oven to 170 degrees C. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Get a handful of dough and roll it into a long log, then twist it into an eight. Place it on the tray and repeat (leaving a little space between them). Brush them with the lightly beaten yolk and bake for 25-30 minutes. You might need to repeat this with the remaining dough. Take the mucenici out of the tray and place in a large bowl. For the syrup, bring the sugar and water to a boil, add the zest and the liquor. Mix again and let it cook for 4-5 more minutes. Lightly toast (dry fry) the walnuts and grind them also.

To serve, arrange 2 mucenici on a plate, poke little holes in them and pour 1-2 tablespoons of syrup. Let them soak it up, then top with 1 tablespoon of honey and 1 of ground walnuts. Let some honey and walnuts nearby so everyone can help themselves with a little extra to taste.

mucenici

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

mac and cheese

 

I love mac and cheese. It’s one of the best food in the world. Everyone knows it. So here is one of thousands recipes in the world. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

- 250 g  macaroni
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1 tablespoon powdered mustard
- 3 cups milk
- 1/2 cup  onion, finely diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1 large egg
- 12 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- fresh black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente.

While the pasta is cooking, in a separate pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep it moving for about five minutes. Make sure it’s free of lumps. Stir in the milk, onion, bay leaf, and paprika. Simmer for ten minutes and remove the bay leaf.
Temper in the egg. Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold the macaroni into the mix and pour into a 2-quart casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese. Enjoy!
mac and cheese

Cocos and sour cherry roulade to celebrate “Dragobete’s Day”

Life is just sweeter with sweets, don’t you think?  When you need to celebrate love you will need a  little bit of dessert to do that. In Romania on 24th February we celebrate Dragobete’s Day, which is a Romanian Valentine’s Day. It is a very old Holiday in our country. Dragobete is a kind of Cupid, a beautiful lad who will bring love in your soul and home.

There a lots of traditions things you have to do on Dragobete’s Day to have love all  year around. Girls have to go out with a boy , couples need to kiss , boys need to be nice with the ladies, you are not aloud to cry and many more. It is not so commercial like Valentine’s Day, it is not about presents, is all about facts.

Roulade

 

This recipe is a must do for this celebration. Very easy to make and very yummy. Doesn’t take o lot of your time and your baby will love it.

Ingredients:

- 600 g biscuits

- 200 ml milk

- 200 g unsalted butter

- 100 g cocos powder

- 8 teaspoon brown powder sugar

- 2 vanilla essence

- 50 g cereals (crunched)

- 3 tablespoons sour cherry jelly

roulade

 

Directions:

Put the biscuits in a food processor and grind them but not too fine. Warm the milk and then add it to the biscuits and mix it till it looks like a dough.

Put sugar,  butter  and the essence in a bowl and mix a bit. Add the jelly and the cocos at the end.

Get two large pieces of grease proof paper. Put half the biscuit mixture in one piece of paper, spreading it in a rectangular shape Make sure you leave a bit of paper to cover the ends. On top of the biscuits, spread half of the cocos mixture and then half of the cereal. Roll up  in paper so it should be a cylinder shaped. Then cover ends. Repeat with other half mixture.

Put roulades in freezer. Freeze for an hour and a half at least. To serve, remove paper by unrolling and cut into slices, if not using all of roulade put back in freezer till ready to eat. Enjoy!
roulade

Mexican vegetables pastry

pastry

This Mexican vegetables pastry is one of the best that I made. I adapted a recipe from a magazine and it was soooo good. I couldn’t believe it. I am not a very good cook as you know by now and I make only easy recipes, but sometimes I get lucky and I cook something very good. Try it and tell me if you like it. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

500 g Mexican vegetables (green peas, carrots, red pepper, corn)

1 package ready rolled puff pastry

1 onion, chopped

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, chopped or minced

1 teaspoon ginger, chopped

pastry

Directions:

Preheat oven to 200 degrees C / gas mark 6.

Put all the ingredients with out the pastry  in a bowl and mix it. Unfold the pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface. Roll the pastry sheet into a 16 x 12-inch rectangle. With the short side facing you, spoon the vegetable mixture onto the bottom half of the pastry sheet to within 1 inch of the edge. Starting at the short side, roll up like a jelly roll. Tuck the ends under to seal. Place seam-side down onto a baking sheet.

Bake for 25 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.  Remove the pastry from the baking sheet and let cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. you can serve it with tomato sauce or other sauce you like.

Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award

sisterhood

 

I was nominated for this award by  Dear Kitty, a blogger with an interesting diary about „ animals, peace and war, science, social justice, women’s issues, arts, and much more.” I recommend that you visit her blog.

Thank you for the nomination, Kitty!

The rules are:

Provide a link to and thank the blogger who nominated you for this award.
Answer ten questions.
Nominate 10-12 blogs that you find a joy to read.
Provide links to these nominated blogs and kindly let the recipients know they have been nominated.
Include the award logo within your blog post.

Questions:

Your favorite colour …. Orange
Your favorite animal … Alligator

Your favorite non-alcoholic drink …. Lemonade
Facebook or Twitter – Facebook

Your favorite pattern ….. Wood pattern
Do you prefer getting or giving presents? Getting
Your favorite number … 5
Your favorite day of the week … Saturday
Your favorite flower …. Daisy

What is your passion? ….. Photography

My nominees are:

Superfoodista

The white ramekins

Veggiezest

When Harry met salad

Ruhlman photography

La Petite paniere

Things we make

Melissa Poppins

Love life eat

Frugal Feeding

Food by Linda

 

Flax seeds

flax seeds

Some call it one of the most powerful plant foods on the planet. Flax seeds was cultivated in Babylon as early as 3000 BC. In the 8th century, King Charlemagne believed so strongly in the health benefits of flax seeds that he passed laws requiring his subjects to consume it.  Now, thirteen centuries later, some experts say we have preliminary research to back up what Charlemagne suspected.

Flax seeds is found in all kinds of today’s foods from crackers to frozen waffles to oatmeal. The Flax Council estimates close to 300 new flax-based products were launched in the U.S. and Canada in 2010 alone. Not only has consumer demand for flax seeds grown, agricultural use has also increased.  Flax seeds is what’s used to feed all those chickens that are laying eggs with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids.

Health benefits

Although flax seeds contains all sorts of healthy components, it owes its primary healthy reputation to three of them:

  • Omega-3 essential fatty acids, “good” fats that have been shown to have heart-healthy effects. Each tablespoon of ground flaxseed contains about 1.8 grams of plant omega-3s.
  • Lignans, which have both plant estrogen and antioxidant qualities. Flax seeds contains 75 to 800 times more lignans than other plant foods.
  • Fiber. Flax seeds contains both the soluble and insoluble types.

Recent studies have suggested that flax seeds may have a protective effect against breast cancer, prostate cancer, and colon cancer.

flax seeds

 

Beetroot salad with seeds

This salad is one of the healthiest salad in the world. I can assure that. I made it for me one day, and I then give it to my husband and my little baby. They love it so much,that now we eat it very often.

salad

Ingredients:

- 1 beetroot baked in the oven and cut in small pieces

- 1 tablespoon flax seeds

- 1 tablespoon olive oil

- 1 lemon juice

- 1 tablespoon chia seeds

- 1 tablespoon hemp seeds

- 1/4 cup nuts

beetroot salad

Directions:

Put everything together in a bowl except for some nuts for decoration. Mix it well and then leave it in the fridge for 1-2 hours.Serve it with nuts on top as appetizer or salad for your main meal.  Enjoy!