Sunday, December 21, 2008

A much needed break...

Hello everyone,

I just wanted to let you know I'm taking a break from blogging over the holidays. Thank you for stopping by and perhaps even reading one or two posts of mine ☺ Thanks to all commenters. I wish everyone a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year!

See you back in 2009!

Monday, December 15, 2008

One lonesome tree

I woke up this morning to find an awful racket outside my window.
Can you guess what happened? Me neither.

When I looked outside there was a worker climbing up into our huge beech tree in the back garden! I had forgotten all about the tree. The city horticulturist had inspected the tree last year and found it to be diseased. It supposedly presented a hazard, so the city ordered it taken down.
They are at it with their chainsaws as we speak. Poor tree. If they keep going at this rate it will be completely removed by midday.
The view out to the back will be entirely different, now that the tree doesn't protect us from the curious eyes of our neighbours.
What a start to the week. Sigh.


Friday, December 12, 2008

Entrecard - serious error

I can't log in to Entrecard. I'm sure other EC users have noticed there's a bug in the system. So no EC dropping for me today. I hope they fix this problem soon!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Fructose Malabsorption

More and more people in Europe are suffering from fructose malabsorption, in many cases a hereditary condition. Alternative health practitioners, however, believe it to be stress-related - along with unhealthy eating habits.
Fructose malabsorption is not an allergy. Basically, the afflicted person cannot properly absorb the fructose found in fruit, some vegetables, sweets, chocolate, processed food, (and many more), due to an enzyme deficiency.
Most people with this condition suffer from bloating, stomache ache, cramps, diarrhea, vomiting, feel sick, and lack of appetite.
Naturally, one would have to switch to a fructose free diet. Not easy. Eating an apple may already cause symptoms. So, eating an apple a day, does not always keep the doctor away ☺
People who are sweet-tooths find the switch extremely difficult, becoming depressed as a consequence. There is a way around this, if you're willing to experiment with dextrose and know how to bake. For all FMA sufferers, try this recipe:


250 gr ground hazelnuts
250 gr flour
10 gr baking soda
270 gr dextrose
100 ml milk (may be lactose free)
140 ml strong, black coffee (cooled)
little bit of corn oil

how to:

mix the nuts, flour, baking soda, dextrose. Add milk, coffee and oil if consistency is too dry. Spread in 30 cm rectangular baking tin and bake at 200°C for ca. 50 minutes until golden.
Then remove from tin and cool on a rack. Cut into slices.

ps - try not to eat all at once!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Wishing everyone a relaxing Sunday...

click to enlarge

...and peaceful 2. Advent.

My hubby found this pair of dolls in a local shop and bought them for me. They were the last ones! Aren't they cute?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Enjoying a vegetarian Christmas meal

Over the holidays most people will have eaten more meat than is good for them. There's the family Christmas dinner and lunch, dinner with the in-laws, the office X'mas party and so on.
How about serving up a vegetarian meal for your family this year?
A vegetarian Christmas meal does not have to be boring, and your body will thank you for it afterwards. Here's a recipe you could try:

For the starter: Fresh Basil-Mini- Mozzarella en brochette (on a skewer)

150 gr Mini Mozzarella
8 Cherry Tomatoes
quarter piece yellow capsicum
quarter piece cucumber

marinade: 1 onion, 1 chilli pepper, garlic, juice of a half lemon, basil, oregano, 100 ml olive oil
salt and pepper

half the tomatoes, cut capsicum and cucumber in small pieces. Place the cheese, tomatoes, capsicum and cucumber on skewers. Set aside.
For the marinade chop onion, garlic, pepper finely, add lemon juice, oil, herbs and spices and marinate the cheese skewers for one hour. Serve with fresh baguette.

main course: Fresh Ravioli with Creamy Herb Sauce

buy 300 gr fresh ravioli preferrably stuffed with porcini filling from your local delicatessen. If you're up to the challenge you can make the ravioli yourself :)

2 shallots
1 TS olive oil
1 cup dry white wine
a quart ltr of cream
150 gr creme fraiche
basil, parsley, chervil - fresh if you can get them
200 gr button mushrooms,
salt & pepper, butter

Cook the ravioli in a pot of simmering water until they rise to the top. This doesn't take long.
Meanwhile, dice the shallots and garlic and sauté in olive oil. Pour in the wine and cook until liquid is reduced. Add the cream and creme fraiche. Reduce. Add salt and pepper. Pour sauce through a sieve into a small pan. Stir in chopped herbs and heat through.
Drain ravioli and add to sauce. In another pan stir-fry mushrooms in a little butter.
Distribute ravioli onto four plates and top with mushrooms.

Dessert: Apple Tarts with Vanilla Ice Cream

(makes 12)

300 gr Apples, lemon juice
Vanilla pod
1 TS brown sugar
a pinch of cinnamon
100 gr butter and 100 gr sugar
3 eggs, salt
125 gr flour, backing soda
ready bought vanilla ice cream

Into a bowl cut apples into slices and add lemon juice. scrape the inside of the vanilla pod into the bowl. Add brown sugar and cinnamon. Stir until well coated.

Heat water in a double boiler and place butter, sugar, eggs and salt into a double boiler and beat until creamy. Take off heat and continue stirring, until mixture has cooled. Add flour and baking soda carefully, pour into muffin cups and top with marinated apple slices.
Bake in oven at 180°C for ca. 35 minutes.

Serve with vanilla ice cream.

The recipe serves four, except for dessert which can be eaten for breakfast the next day. Yummy!


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Top 3 Entrecard Droppers for November

Here are my top three droppers - THANK YOU

and visitors...why don't you stop by these blogs; they're worth a visit!

1. Wine at Five

2. Brick for Jade

3. Chronic Chick Talk

Have a good week!