Monthly Archives: May 2012

Salmon and Sauerkraut in crunchy papillotes

This is hardly a recipe because it is so quickly put together and because you can accommodate it in so many idiosyncratic ways! But it is very healthy and delicious and I have produced it so many times over the past months that I feel I have to include it… This is a family food diary first and foremost, after all.

Sauerkraut is a pickled cabbage that is used a lot in Macrobiotic cooking because it is very digestible : it promotes good bacteria in the digestive system. It is also a great combination with oily fish for it helps the digestion of fat. I find that its sour taste compliments salmon particularly well. This recipe is inspired by one found on the associative French site Marmiton.org.

Ingredients list:

  • Sheets of filo or strudel pastry
  • Onions, 2
  • Fillets of fresh or smoked salmon
  • Soya cream or crème fraîche
  • Rapeseed oil
  • salt and pepper
  • Fresh or dried dill
  • Tin of Sauerkraut (cabbage in brine): Check for a Sauerkraut that does not contain added sugar – sadly, some pickles do…
  • Small glass of white wine – I’d happily drink the rest over the meal.
Peal and chop the onions and cook them in a little oil until soft.
Mix in the drained sauerkraut. Add a small glass of white wine and let it steam off. Reserve.
Chop the salmon in large chunks. Add the cream, seasoning and the onions. Toss it so the sauce coats each morsels.
Spreand your strudel pastry or lay the filo sheets. One sheet is enough to wrap around.
Put a big scoop of drained Sauerkraut filling in the top corner of each sheets, top with some salmon chunks and start rolling down diagonally, tucking the sides in as you roll.
Put the parcels in an oven tray, sprinkle a little oil and bake at 180º for 20 to 30 minutes. Enjoy with the rest of your wine.

Green tea cupcakes

Green tea cupcakes

Ingredients list:

  • Caster sugar 125g
  • Cornflour 65g
  • Bicarbonate of soda 1 tsp
  • Matcha tea powder 2 tsp
  • Eggs 4
  • Salt
  • Butter 80g

Green tea icing:

  • Icing sugar 125g
  • Butter 40g
  • Cream cheese 100g
  • Matcha tea powder 1 Tbsp
  • Lemon juice 2Tbsp

Cream the butter and sugar until light.

Then add the egg yolks (or the whole eggs if in a hurry). If you have the time, whisk the whites separately.

Add the cornflour and green tea powder.

Mix well.

Fold in the whites- if you have separated them. I often don’t do that to save time and the result is pretty much the same!

Spoon the mixture into the muffins cases.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes at 180º- they are ready when they raise and do not colour.

Now onto the next stage: Decorating is healing and stress-busting so take your time to enjoy this!

While they bake, mix the icing sugar, lemon juice, soft butter and cream cheese.

Beat with a whisk until fluffy, being careful to crush any lumps and get a silky smooth result. Taste and add lemon or sugar if necessary. Put in the fridge until needed.

Take the cupcakes out of the oven. Let them cool down.

Use a piping bag and nozzle to decorate your cupcakes with the cream. Make a nice swirl and put a sugar bud or a rose in the middle. Sprinkle a dust of Matcha.

Et voilà! I made those for a friend to share in the afternoon but you could just have them plain with a cup of coffee as a morning treat.

Dainty and light, ready to go!

Recipe inspired by “Les cordons bleus de Londres”, published for the association Enfants du Mekong, Londres.

Mung beans miso soup

I never think of soup as a purely winter staple and in fact, I find there is a soup (or two) for every season. Try this one for Springtime!

Ingredients list :

  • Large shallot, 1
  • Water, 1 L
  • Pre-soaked Mung beans, 250g
  • Knorr vegetable cube, 1
  • Golden miso paste (Shiro Miso), 1 Tsp
  • Umeboshi paste (pickled plums), 1 tsp
  • Dash of almond or soya cream to serve
  • Olive oil

I soak the Mung for 24h to 36h  prior to using them in soups, stews or salad. Just rinse them and cover and put in a dark cool corner of the kitchen. If they sprout too quickly, you can reserve in the fridge under a cloth. Use them when the white tips are just appearing.

Chop the shallots finely and fry on medium heat in one Tbsp of olive oil. When they turn brown, add the soaked beans and the hot water – with the vegetable stock cube dissolved in it.

Boil for 15 minutes until the grain is soft.

Add the Shiro miso and Umeboshi paste and let those melt on low heat for a few minutes.

Note: Never let the miso or Umeboshi boil up for fear of loosing their health properties. They both promote an alkaline digestive environment and are therefore invaluable in any effort to acquiring better health. I find these ingredients at the Japanese centre in Lower Regents street W1 : Always buy from a reputable brand and check for added sugar.

Added and hidden sugar…This is my new bug-bear! Hear more on the Sugar as Toxin by a scientist called Robert Lustig, here.

This soup is a great springtime pick-me-up. The energy from the sprouting seeds is just what you need when Spring is a bit late to come and you want to feel attuned to the renewal of life all around… Or so it should be … Mung beans are also good at this time of year because they are meant to be very cooling and soothing for the internal organs.

Serve hot with wholemeal bread and a dash of almond cream. Add a little salt and pepper to taste but only if you need to. I don’t liquidize it but you could.

A crunchy stir-fry in springtime colours