Thursday, 31 January 2008

Uzbek pumpkin puffs

Polish: dynia
Tonga: hina
Italian: zucca
Hindi: सीताफल
Albanian: kungull
Ukrainian: гарбуз
Bahasa Indonesia: labu
Hebrew: דלעת
Mapunzugun: waza
Swahili: boga
Afrikaans: pampoen
Maya: k'uum
Norwegian: gresskar
Rapanui: ipu kaha
Saami: gurbbet
Shona: nhanga
Sango: léŋgi

I have a problem with the original version of the name of my dish. In Uzbek language people were writing Arabic until the Soviet occupation. After that, cyrilic alphabet was introdiced and adjusted to Uzbek phonetics. Since XXI the official transcript is in Latin alphabet, street names and official websites included. So the name of my dish should be in latin script too, but I only have its Russian name and in cirilic: Чуду из тыквы. I can only guess that in Uzbek it would be something like oshqovoq chudu...? I need to know the original name since it is one of the best things I ever ate!

see also: Ecuadorian green plantain stuffed fritters

2 cups flour
1 cup boiling water
2 spoons oil (I added Malaysian orange palm oil which gave my chudu a lovely colour)

1 spoon salt
1 cup rubbed pumpkin
1 medium onion, chopped
1 spoon sugar
salt, pepper

1. Knead flour with salt and oil
2. Add boiling water, wait until you are able to knead again. When your dough has a homogeneous consistency, let it for about 30 minutes
3. Fry chopped onions. When golden brown, add rubbed pumpkin, sugar and salt. Fry about 3 minutes
4. Sprinkle your workplace with flour. Take a handful of dough and pin it out so thin as you can.
5. Cut out circles with a help of a plate of about 15 cm in diameter
6. Spread the filling thin on one half of a dough circle, leave 1 cm free outskirts. Cover with the second half and stick, making a strip with the edge of the fork (see the final effect of the edges of my chudu)
7. Fry

ps. the recipe is taken from Polish culinary forum, but the chudu recipe from this site was taken from some Russian culinary site... and so on :)

Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Belarussian helva cake

Polish: chałwa
Maltese: ħelwa
Greek: Χαλβάς
Arabic: حلاوة
Burmese: ဟလဝာ
Urdu: حلوا
Malay: അലുവ
Hindi: हल्वा
Armenian: հալվա
Bosnian: halva
Macedonian: алва

In Russia and former soviet republics (at least the western ones) you can try sunflower and peanuts helva. The sunflower helva is the taste of my childhood. Grandfather was always bringing it when visiting us and the taste was so specific that I loved it and hated it same time. Grandmother gave my mum a Belorussian cookbook. I sometimes browse the old cookbooks of my mum, looking for a new inspiration. Belarussian fake gingerbread (Пернічек) was a successful experiment. Beware, this cake needs no butter or oil, you just add helva! Tastes and looks like a real gingerbread but is mild and not spicy at all!

200 gr helva (I only had classical sesame helva, that is why I added the next and the last ingredient)
1/3 cup peanut butter
170 gr plum conserve (plum jam, plum butter, povidl, Pflaumenmus...)

1 cup sugar
3 cups flour
1 egg
1 spoon cinnamon
1 spoon baking soda
1 spoon vanilla sugar
1 handful peanuts

1. Disintegrate helva with your hands or with a fork

2. Blend helva with povidl, add baking soda and cinnamon

3. Whisk egg with sugar and vanilla sugar until sugar melts; add to helva and mix all the ingredients until creamy

4. Add flour and knead

5. Put in buttered tray, sprinkle with peanuts and bakeabout 45 minutes in 180C oven (make a test using a toothpic to be sure your Пернічек is ready)

6. Sprinkle with sugar water: combine 4 spoons sugar and 8 spoons water, cook and sprinkle the cake. After that, sprinkle with powdered sugar and cinnamon

Tuesday, 29 January 2008

Indonesian layered cake

Polish: jagoda
Serbian: Боровница
Saami: sarri
Lithuanian: mėlynė
Espernato: mirtelo
Galician: arando
Ukrainian: Чорниця
Belorussian: Чарніцы
Dutch: bosbes
Estonian: mustikas
Swedish: blåbär

I made this extremely tasty Indonesian layered cake (Kuih lapis sarawak) twice, fascinated after seeing this wonderful blog and the huge talent of its owner, Yochana. After entering this wonderful site for the first time, I was sitting in front of the screen, flabbergasted and smelling the flavour of blueberries. My mum always prepares pączki for carnival, which requires many yolks. Then, egg whites are mine.

450 gr egg whites
180 gr sugar
180 gr bilberry jam (originally: blueberry pie filling)

180 gr flour
100 gr condensed milk

350 gr butter

1. Beat soft butter with condensed milk until homogeneous and creamy

2. Whisk egg whites with a bit of salt and when they are almost ready, add sugar and continue whisking

3. Mix butter-milk with sweet egg whites and flour. Divide into 2 portions. Add jam to one of them and mix well

4. Butter a rectalgular baking mold (I use the long rectangular one, the same as to make bread) and spread 2 spoons of plain mixture (the one without jam)

4. Stream for some minutes. When ready, spread 2 spoons of blueberry mixture on the recently baked layer.

5. Repeat until you finish both doughs. You can sprinkle the cake with powdered sugar. Cut carefully (only when cooled), the cake is very delicate.

1st attempt:

2nd attempt:

Austrian strawberry dumplings

Polish: truskawka
Romansh: fraja
Faroese: jarðber
Croatian: cvijet
Cornish: sevienn
Chechen: ts'azamash
Yiddish: סטראבערי
Quechua: Muntipuquy
Nedersaksisch: Erebeie
Azeri: çiyələk
Guarani: yvapytã
Occitan: amorsa
Schwabisch: Bräschdleng
Punjabi: ਸਟਰੌਬੇਰੀ

Strawberries are the most beloved fruits in Poland. The season to buy and eat them begin in may and ends in june. This time if you are at the market, you will only smell the delicious aroma of fresh juicy red strawberries. They are cheap and we buy tons of them and freeze, to use them later in the wintertime when we start missing summer. Today I made strawberry Knödel basing at some Austrian recipes. We make those dumplings in Poland too, they are even called similarly (knedle) but made basically from flour pastry and not from soft cream cheese (German: Quark, Polish: serek homogenizowany), like Austrians use to do, and almost always with plums and covered with breadcrumbs fried with butter.

see also: Austrian apricot dumplings

400 gr quark / creamy curd / serek homogenizowany
150 gr flour
50 gr breadcrumbs
50 gr butter
1 egg
1 spoon vanilla sugar
1 teaspoon lemon zest, finely chopped
frozen strawberries, about 1/2 kg (fresh would be even better, I guess)

1. Beat butter with a mixer until soft and creamy. Separately, beat egg with vanilla sugar

2. Combine quark with flour and breadcrumbs

3. Mix butter, quark-flour-breadcrumbs and egg, add lemon zest. Let cool in a fridge for 1 hour

4. Form little balls in your hands (Wash your hands in water often to be able to obtain lovely balls) and put a strawberry inside each of them

5. Cook in salted water 15 minutes on a low heat

the rest of strawberries (you should have about 1 cup of them)
1 cup cream / sour cream / yoghurt
eventually powdered sugar to taste

Mix all the ingredients. Sauce is cold and Knödel warm. Tastes really good!

Friday, 18 January 2008

Polish stuffed onions

Polish: cebula
Georgian: ხახვი
Lunfardo: chipola
Turkmen: соган
Swahili: kitunguu
Saami: lávki
Quechua: siyuylla
Occitan: cèba
Kurdish: پياز
Albanian: qepë
Limburgian: un
Korean: 양파

Onion is a great vegetable. Very healthy, very tasty and universal. Raw, fried, stewed... In soups, salads, stuffed or... grated and mixed with sugar gives a syrup when you catch a cold. The Ancient Egyptians worshipped it, believing that its spherical shape and concentric rings symbolized eternal life. Let's just believe that eating onions will allow us to live a long healthy life. Why not stuffing them with black pudding (originally kaszanka, a kind of Polish sausage made from blood, buckwheat and chopped liver, similar to Grützwurst, black pudding or morcilla)? Few ingredients but a bit laborious, but worth!

(no, you don't need carrots here)

4 big onions
1 blackpudding
1 handful chive
salt, pepper, oil to fry

1. Peel onions, cook until almost soft. Nick carefully from the bottom and hollow out carefully so that you receive onions empty inside.

2. Chop the part of onions that you took from inside, above. Fry them until golden brown, after that peel blackpudding from gut, break up with a fork, add to onions, mix well and fry together. Add salt and pepper to taste.

3. Fill the onions with blackpudding-onions stuffing. You can put a bit of butter on the top of each onion.

4. Bake until golden, for about 30 minutes, in the oven (250C)

Baked blackpudding onions sitting on rutabaga latkes, served with 3-coloured-carrots curry and tortilla with sour cream. Mmmmmm!

Thursday, 17 January 2008

Lithuanian potato fritters

Polish: mąka
Mapunzugun: rügo
Danish: mel
Macedonian: брашно
Hindi: मैदा
Cree: ᐸᐦᐧᑫᔑᑲᓐ
Flemish: meel
Serbian: брашно
Bavarian: Mäih
Maasai: aunga
Tamil: மாவு
Zulu: ufulawa

This recipe is an eastern-european fantasy about flour. In this part of the world cooked and mashed potatoes combined with flour is a base for many differrent plates. When it is cold outside during a snowy winter, you have to give enough energy so that your body works properly. I found a picture of this lovely Lithuanian Švilpikai and I had to try it. I translated on my own several Lithuanian recipes found in the net,compared them as usual and the result is following.

see also: Slovak potato dumplings

6 medium potatoes
1/2 cup flour
1 spoon potato starch
1 egg
salt, pepper

1. Boil unpeeled potatoes in salted water. Peel when boiled and cooled. Mash with fork.

2. Combine mashed potatoes, flour, potato starch, egg, salt and pepper. Knead until homogeneous.

3. Sprinkle your workplace with some more flour. Roll a thin dough. Sprinkle the dough with flour. Cut into squares / rhombus. Fry in oil in a saucepan.

Lithuanians serve it with mushroom sauce but you can serve it with a delicious walnut sauce of mine, which combines so good with nutty rutabagas (recipe and pic of rutabaga will appear very soon, I promise)

1/2 cup walnut powder
1 cup thick Balcan yoghurt / sour cream
2 garlic cloves
salt, pepper

1. Split walnuts and mill in electric coffee mill or buy walnut powder.

2. Combine with yoghurt (sour cream), salt, pepper and mashed garlic.

(just my imagination) chocolate pudding

Polish: czekolada
Georgian: შოკოლადი
Armenian: Շոկոլադ
Basque: txokolate
Sardinian: tziculate
Maori: tiakarete
Faroese: sjokoláta
Azeri: şokolad
Nahuatl: xocolātl
Scots Gaelic: teòclaid
Tamil: சாக்கலேட்
Vietnamese: sô-cô-la
Yiddish: טשאקאלאד
Old Prussian: čėkuolads

If you feel like you wanna eat something sweet but fast to prepare, you can prepare a homemade pudding. Chocolate pudding is something really good for the long dark winter afternoons. Xocolātl was a drink and meant in mexican Nahuatl language nothing else but bitter water. It was a spicy drink of Mayas and Aztecas, and cacao beans were often used as currency in Mesoamerica. I never was a big fan of chocolate but a chocolate pudding is an exception.

1/2 l milk (2 cups)
50 gr (1/2 pack) chocolate, milk or bitter
2 spoons potato starch

1. Boil 1 1/2 cups of milk in a pot. Add chocolate chunks, stir until melted

2. Stir well 2 spoons of potato starch with the rest of milk, until homogeneous. No lumps!

3. When chocolate milk is boiling, take it off from the heat. Add milk with potato starch and stir well. If you do it carefully and fast, you have no lumps. After that, heat again until you see bubbles. Ready to be eaten!

Wednesday, 16 January 2008

German rutabaga fritters

Polish: ziemniak
Kashubian: bùlwa
Turkmen: картошка
Swiss German: Härdöpfel
Manx: praase
Slovenian: krompir
Schwäbisch : Äbbiere
Romansh: tartuffel
Punjabi: ਆਲੂ
Maasai: ilpiasi
Byelorussian: бульба
Nahuatl: tlālcamohtli
Old Prussian: Bolbė
Telugu: బంగాళదుంప

Latkes is considered in USA a typical Jewish dish. Here in Poland we call them placki ziemniaczane, eat them often, usually with sour cream, gulash or sugar (!). Working with rasper is the longest part of preparation, but it is worth, even if the dish is caloric and fried, thus not very healthy. Polish latkes have a differrent consistence. They are crunchy of course but the recipe requires more flour and even milk or sour cream to add. To make it lighter in digestion, people often add grated carrot or pumpkin, which gives a beautiful colour. You can also add a spoon of tomato puree or chopped onions and garlic. This time I was basing on a German recipe for potato-rutabaga latkes (Steckrübenpuffer) but of course modified it a bit to fit my needs. Nice yellow rutabaga gives other colour to the dish and make it lighter in digestion.

500 gr rutabaga
500 gr potatoes
2 eggs
chive, parsley green
3 spoons (about 40 gr) flour
1 spoon a bit of salt
1 spoon dried herbs if you like to
lemon juice

1 cup sour cream or balcan yoghurt
1 spoon mustard
1 clove garlic
salt, pepper

1. Grate rutabaga first, than potato. This is important cause potato oxygenates, but you should not allow this. That is why you have to sprinkle grated potatoes with lemon juice and it won't become brown. Chop chives and / or parsley green

2. Mix eggs with flour in a bowl, stir grated vegetables very well and add in the bowl. Stir up all the ingredients, add salt and pepper

3. You can think you need more eggs or flour. Don't! Fry small portions in a saucepan with hot oil

4. Mix sour cream, mustard and chopped garlic, add salt and pepper to taste. The sauce is mine, not taken from any recipe, and it tastes really good with rutabaga latkes.

(just my imagination) carrot casserole

Polish: marchew
Uyghur: سەۋزە
Urdu: گاجر
Tajik: Зардак
Armenian: գազար
Georgian: სტაფილო
Swiss German: Rüebli
Valencian: safanoria
Maltese: zunnarija
Bengali: গাজর
Papiamento: karòt
Hausa: karaz
Turkmen: кәшр

Carrot doesn't have to be boring. It even doesn't have to be of orange colour. I didn't know it until visiting one day a Reformhaus in Cologne. I found there a violet carrot, which was violet oly in the outside, and inside still orange.Raw it iasted to me just like sunflower seeds. I am not in Germany anymore, time for studying there is over, but my beloved sister brought me lately two packs of colourful carrots to cook something delicious. She loves my experiments, that is why I love to cook for her.

carrots: violet, yellow and orange (or only orange if you have)
1 big violet onion
1 spoon dried herbs (thyme, rosemary, parsley and so on)
olive oil

1. Wash carrots but don't peel. Put into a pot with boiling water with a spoon of sugar and half spoon of salt for 10 minutes. After that, peel and cut into slices. They should be not very soft.

2. Chop onion and fry with olive oil. Then soft and fragrant, add violet carrot slices.

3. In another pan fry yellow and orange slices. Add herbs. When soft, add violet ingredients.

Polish dumplings (pierogi)

Polish: kiszona kapusta
Danish: surkål
Russian: квашеная капуста
German: Sauerkraut
French: choucroute
Italian: crauti
Ido: surkruto
Estonian: hapukapsas
Chinese: 德国酸菜
Esperanto: saŭrkraŭto
Slovak: kyslá kapusta

Pierogi is deffinitely one of the most important dishes in my life. Not only a Polish dish, cause eaten frecuently also in Ukraine, Belarus, Russia and I think that also in Lithuania as well. Typical eastern dish. A kind of dumplings, cooked, baked or fried, from flour and water or from yeast dough. Filling can be sweet, sour, from cottage cheese, cheese with mashed potatoes, eggs, buckwheat, mushrooms, sauerkraut, berries, cherries, lentil, spinach, ground meat or even poppy and raisins. Once I made pierogi for my Galician friends in the kitchen of Santiago de Compostela's students dorm and gave one for a Cuban neighbor. She was about 50 and diplomatic said that my pierogi with brambles, seasoned with whipped cream, were "interesting". But in my opinion, it is not one of the tastes you need to learn since a child to accept them in the adult life. I think pierogis are universal. My recipe will be for sauerkraut filling. Sauerkraut is very healthy, contains a lot of vitamin C and lactic acid bacteria, also found in buttermilk or yoghurt. Perfect for the wintertime.

(here: kiszona kapusta / sauerkraut, waiting for the dough)

3 cups flour
1 small egg
4 spoons oil
3/4 spoon salt
3/4 glass warm water

1/2 kg sauerkraut
2 onions, 1 for the filling and 1 for the relish
(optional: a handful of mushrooms, everything but champignons, 2-3 spoons breadcrumbs)

1. Combine all the ingredients for the dough until homogeneous consistency. Knead until it is springy. Form a ball and leave in th fridge until you are ready with the filling

2. Cook sauerkraut (and mushrooms, previously soaked overnight) in a pot with a glass of water and 1 spoon butter for about 1 hour.

3. In a saucepan, fry finely chopped onions. Chop cooked, drained sauerkraut (and mushrooms) and fry 5 minutes with onions so that all the water evaporates

4. You can grind the filling if you want to, but not neecssary. You can also add 2-3 spoons of breadcrumbs. Add pepper to taste.

5. Dredge your workplace with a bit of flour. Roll a handful of dough with a rolling-pin until thin. Cut out circles with a cup or a circle mold. Put half spoon of filling on a circle of dough and glue forming half-moon.

6. Boil the water with a little little bit of salt and oil in the pot. Put pierogi, mix with a wooden spoon. When they appear on the top of the pot, let them cook for 2 minutes more. Carefully take them off with a strainer spoon. Drain well.

7. Sprinkle with fried chopped onions or butter. Some people love them next day after preparing, fried.

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

(just my imagination) baked turnips / rutabagas

Polish: rzepa
Icelandic: næpa
French: navet
Hebrew: לפת
Marathi: शलगम
Czech: vodnice
Japanese: カブ
Estonian: kaalikas
Tagalog: singkamas
Turkish: şalgam
Romanian: gulie

(Turnip and black radish. Don't use black raddish to this dish)

Before Europeans know the taste of potatoes, they were all eating cooked grains, turnips, rutabagas and parsleys. In Poland potatoes are, together with bread, the very basic meal, just like rice in China. Once at my local market I found a man selling turnips. I've never seen them before and was so anxious to try. I bought 1 kilo and tried raw, with sandwich and in salad. After that, after falling in love with this vegetable, I was pickling, frying, baking, stuffing and stewing it on many ways. Turnip is universal, you can do anything with it. Sometimes I regret that I started writing this blog so late cause I missed so much great food without a pic. Many times I make a dich only once. Cause there are so many products and so many ways of preparing them. Like radish, turnip and beetroot pickles. Referring to the first post of this blog, 1 ate potatoes only once today :P) since september. All this time I was consuming turnip instead. Here is my recipe how to prepare baked aromatic juicy turnips

1/2 kg turnips (or more, or less, as you wish)
2 spoons of olive oil
2 spoons of mixed herbs (mint, thyme, rosemary, parsley, anything)
2 cloves garlic, mashed
salt, pepper

1. Wash, peel turnips and cut them into "half moons", quarters or smaller, depending on how big they are

2. Put them into a bowl and mix with olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic and herbs so that oil and herbs cover the slices

3. Cover a baking pan with baking paper spread turnips, cover turnips with baking paper so that they stay juicy. Bake about half an hour in 250C

(here: baked turnip with buckwheat)

You can do exactly the same with rutabaga: