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Archive for the ‘Cooking’ Category

Birchermuesli, Perfect Food For The Olympics

Although I vowed I wouldn’t watch any of the Beijing Olympics, I found myself sitting in front of the television,excusing myself by saying I had to wish Roger, who was carrying the Swiss Flag,Happy Birthday.

The Swiss have now managed to win a bronze medal,so I am now committed to watch us beat the Chinese !

I live in the land of the original Birchermuesli.Nothing out of packets for me. It is the perfect food for watching the Olympics on TV. Nourishing, quick,easy and you don’t get a bad conscience looking at all those perfect bodies,because it doesn’t need to have many calories. It usually tastes better though for a good lashing of cream and sugar, brown of course.

Dr.Bircher-Benner 1867-1939, pioneer of whole food health and Birchermuesli introducer, might raise his eyebrows at mine, but basically it is the same as his, which is still served in the sanatorium he founded in Zürich.

You need;

A cup of dry rolled oats

soak in

2-3 cups of fluid, milk, milk/creme, milk/yogurt, or evaporated milk as preferred for about 30minutes.


2 apples,grated unpeeled,

1tablespoon of lemon juice (optional)

a handfull of chopped nuts (I like pecan or walnuts),

lots of berries, whatever you have,raspberries, blueberries,strawberries,etc

2 bananas sliced

other fruit if liked, peaches,plums,apricots,mango,chopped. (oranges or pineapple don’t combine well)

Sweeten with honey,brown sugar,or molasses.

Add more fluid if too dry, and serve with whipped cream if you are not counting calories.

In Switzerland Birchermuesli is often eaten with wholemeal bread and butter as a complete meal.

En Guete and let the best man (or woman) win.


As Sour as a Lemon

I am a bit sour because I didn’t think of it myself.
For years now if a recipe called for a few drops, or spoonfull
of lemon juice I would cut a lemon in half and squeeze.
I did know if I rolled it back and forth on a hard surface first juice would flow more freely, and I have always done this.
Of course after cutting, the lemon wouldn’t last too long.

Today I read that if you stuck a needle into it (Presumably a fine knitting needle) the exact amount needed could be sqeezed out and the lemon would remain closed and fresh much longer.

Now why didn’t I think of that.

How to make Dandelion Soup

Everyone seems to love Dandelions.
I saw this Recipe in the Le Menu. Try it if they aren’t all picked.

Dandelion Soup

1 Bunch of Spring Onions, chopped
1 Handfull of Dandelion Leaves,chopped
2 Soup spoons of Semolina
600ml of Vegetable Bouillion
100ml of double cream
Salt and Pepper to taste.

Fry Onions lightly in Butter,add Semolina and Bouillion.
Cook slowly in pan half covered by lid for 15 minutes.
Mash together if possible with a mixer.
Add cream and heat,add finely chopped dandelion leaves.
Add salt and pepper as liked.
Serve in warmed bowls,decorated with a swirl of cream and what else-
a small dandelion and leaf

The Euro 2008 and the Potato

You might think the Euro and Potatoes have nothing in common but you would be wrong.

“Swisspatat” the Swiss Potato Industry Organisation says it does.
It is the Worlds best loved vegetable, and Football is the best loved sport. These bind.

Therefore Swisspatat want to widen the horizons of Football Fans with Potato Recipes
from the participating Euro countries, menu ideas and theme evenings are being arranged to waken the interest of fans for other cultures.
Whether “Swedish Potato Pot”, Tschech”Potato Packets”,or “Drunken Potatoes” from Portugal.
Tubors tie.
Infos can be found under http://www.kartoffel.ch

Mince and Macaroni

Yesterday we were invited to a friends’ Restaurant.He is a very good cook,in fact he graduated from the famous Ecole Hôtelière in Lausanne.That doesn’t stop him cooking plain,and inexpensive food well.
So he made something for us which he knows my husband loves. A dish that just the title will start every Swiss abroad drooling.

G’HACKETS und HOERNLI mit AEPFELMUES (minced beef and macaroni with apple sauce)

Very quickly made, thrifty, filling, and delicious.

Now no Chef tells you his exact recipe,but I will let you Know the basics and you can experiment with the gravy.

400,gr. of minced beef, if possible minced twice.
2 large onions chopped finely
1 clove of garlic,crushed
1 laurel leaf.
2 tablespoons of flour
1 liter of beef or vegetable boullion
salt and pepper
oil to fry.

Fry meat quickly at high temperature,add onions and garlic, salt and pepper. Fry lightly together.
Sprinkle and mix with flour.
Add warm bouillon and cook gently for five to ten minutes.

400gr, Macaroni, if possible fresh, cooked in lots of hot salted water
2 large onions fried in plenty of butter or oil.
Pour over cooked macaroni before serving.(Optional,as unhealthy but good)

Enough peeled and sliced apples to make quantity of sauce desired.
Cook in very little water with sugar if liked.
Sieve or mash.
Add some ground cinnamon to taste.
Serve seperately.

En Guete

How to make a Dandelion Pizza

From my earlier Dandelion post you will have read that Dandelions are good for you.
A salad made with the young leaves, picked before the plant starts to flower and mixed with an Aceto Balsamico salad dressing tastes really delicate and willl do wonders for your liver.

Salad might not be for you, but try Dandelion Pizza.

Roll out a round of Pizza pastry,
Spread with Tomato Sugo,
Cover with cut pieces of Mozzarella Cheese (about 100gr.)
Sprinkle with crumbled bits of Pecorino Cheese (about 50gr.)
Lastly cover with 3-4 slices of Parma Ham,and freshly milled pepper.

Bake for 15-20 minutes at 2oo° C

Make a salad dressing with 1 Tablespoon of Aceto Balsamico,preferably rosso,and 2Tablespoons of Olive Oil. Salt and Pepper.

Mix with 50gr. of clean dry Dandelion leaves.
Spread over cooked hot Pizza,and serve immediately.

En Guete

Swiss Plait Bread And Easter Baking

Sunday Morning Breakfast in Switzerland wouldn’t be the same without Zopf.

Fresh Plait, or Zopf as we say , thickly spread with Emmentaler butter and home made jam is a feast for the Gods.

It’s easy to make and a hundred times better than any mass produced supermarket product.

Beginners might find the plaiting a bit complicated.There are different ways of doing it,but if you do get stuck use the same method as you would for hair.

This is the easiest way.

This is a little more complicated.

Here is the Recipe: Swiss Zopf

30g fresh yeast (dry if unavailable)

1teaspoon of sugar

125g butter

3.75 deciliter of milk

1 teaspoon of salt

750g white flour

2 egg yolks mixed with 1 Tablespoon of oil

Mix yeast with sugar and leave to dissolve. ( If using dry yeast mix as instructed on packet)

Dissolve salt in the hand warm milk,add melted butter then add egg mixture.

Sieve flour into bowl,make a hollow and add dissolved yeast,then slowly add milk and egg mixture. Mix together.
Need for about 10 minutes .

Cover with a wet cloth or cling film.Place in bowl and leave in a warm place for about an hour, until dough has doubled in volume.

Or leave, covered by film in fridge over night.

Need again for 5-10 minutes.

Divide into strips and plait.

Leave on greased oven tray to rest for 15 minutes.

Brush with egg yolk and bake in pre-heated oven at 200°C for about 40 minutes. Lower shelf.
Bread is done if it sounds hollow when tapped on base with knuckles.

If you have enjoyed this bread while visiting Switzerland I am sure you will want to make it yourself.

As an alternative it can be formed into a small or large wreath at Eastertime,the centre later filled with coloured eggs resting on green cress. Or form into chicken or other birds. Children love helping with this.
If you prefer a sweeter dough try adding a little sugar and dried sultanas.

Enjoy being creative.

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