27 December 2009

Ham Steak. Diner classic goes uptown.

My mother-in-law is a big Elvis fan and some years ago, she bought an Elvis cookbook. With all the stuff the king was allegedly fond of. Like Banana cream pudding, fried peanut butter sandwiches and German bratwurst. The book also says the was a fan of diner food and listed a recipe for ham steak with red eye gravy. When we first cooked it, it tasted horrible. Coffee too thin, too bitter, too salty. Terrible.

After some time, I came across another recipe for red eye gravy, this time with the addition of red currant jelly. Which absolutely made sense to me as I always drink my coffee very sweet (undrinkable, my husband would say). And out of nowhere came the inspiration to use Crème de Cassis (French black currant liqueur) and grenadine syrup instead.

Though nobody believes this is a good combination, all the guests that I made it for were totally impressed. Since then, this has become our meal for special occasions.

20 December 2009

Risotto alla Milanese. Spiced up a bit.

Basically, there is red risotto and white risotto. The red variety mostly contains tomatoes and bold flavors, whereas the white one goes better with more subtle flavors like mushrooms, asparagus and such. But as you might suspect, I like going for the intense flavors, so I took a classic recipe for Risotto alla Milanese and spiced it up a bit with chilies and peas.

This was on a evening shortly after my foot got operated on, so going shopping for groceries was out of the question. So risotto is once again a nice way of getting a nice meal out of the rests in your fridge and freezer.

12 December 2009

Pecan Pie. Fructose free and delicious.

Around Halloween, I was surprised of all the Pecan Pie recipes popping up in all the food blogs. I really love pecans - they were unknown in my childhood in Germany, and even nowadays they're not available in every supermarket. But most of the recipes also called for corn syrup which rules out for tow reasons - also basically not available in Germany and also potentially containing too much fructose. So I searched around the internet and found that there are recipes for pecan pie with maple syrup. Now that was right up my alley, as there is basically no fructose in it and the taste is just marvelous. And this pie is really tasty, a crunchy buttery crust, maple syrup and pecans that taste like the candied ones from the fair.

06 December 2009

Chocolate Banana Sheet Cake. My husband's favorite.

This is my husband's traditional birthday cake. His mother got the recipe out of a magazine a long time ago and since then he HAS to have this cake - otherwise it's not a proper birthday.