15 Feb 2010

Food for Thought

... or maybe foccacia for thought? (Hang in there, surprise recipe at the end)

I managed to lose and find my mojo last week. But the one thing I never lost was my cooking mojo. It has been full on since my cooking escapades in Oslo a couple of weeks back.

I'm enjoying everything from every-day meals to pancake-breakfasts and Sunday roasts. And I've always let Little Man join in on the fun. He loves stirring batters and dipping bread in egg for french toast. He tastes all the vegetables. And when he plays, he's making food. Usually pretend making  pancakes or tomato soup. His favourites.

This weekend was no different.

Saturday I had promised Big Man a three course Valentines dinner. We started off with scallops with sabayon-sauce. I quickly seared the scallops and made the sabayon on a reduction of white wine, shallots and tarragon. For those not in the cheffy 'know' sabayon is made of egg yolks whisked over simmering water.

The main course was a whole beef tenderloin, fried off, then baked in oven till delightfully pink (the trick is to let it rest for at least ten minutes after you take it out of the oven). I made hasselback potatoes and fresh steamed asparagus. It was all served with a red wine sauce. Yummy!

For dessert we had 'Iskremgarden' chocolate ice cream. From local cows made directly on the farm, just a few kilometres form where we live. It is sooo delicious and creamy.

Too busy cooking, I forgot to take pics of the food.

Yesterday we had the In-Laws over for a sunday roast. I made a 2.5 kilo organic chook (Aussie for chicken) with a walnut and cranberry stuffing. Roast fennel, beets, onions, sweet potatoes, normal potatos and carrots. And yummy roast garlic gravy.

And for dessert 'Fastelavens boller'. Traditionally buns with whipped cream, but I made a vanilla custard.

Little Man and I had our fingers stuck in the dough and cream all morning. And boy it turned out good. Dad-In-Law proclamed that it was the best bun he'd ever eaten, and that he was not kidding. They then proceeded to roll, stuffed silly, down the stairs and home to their couch.

Today I was so 'good' that I cooked stock on the chicken bones from yesterday, and Little Man and I made sweet potato soup and that foccaccia above.

And If you're missing recipies, this is the one you're getting. It's adapted in a healthier direction, but originally from Jamie Oliver.

Healthy Foccaccia

500 grams white flour
500 grams whole wheat flour (the rough kind)
50 grams yeast
500 milliltres tepid water
A good pinch of salt
One tablespoon honey

Rosemary (or any other herb of your liking)
Sea salt
Good oil

Mix the honey and yeast in the fingerwarm water and add to the dry ingredients to make a smooth dough. I do this in my Kitchen Aid. It's baking magic, and has made it really easy for me to just 'whip up' bread and buns.

Let the dough proof for about 40 minutes. More if you are patient.

I use a sheet of baking paper in a tray that is a little smaller than the trays in my oven and add a bit of good oil in the bottom. I'm into the rape seed oil lately. The Nordic Olive Oil.

Empty the dough in the tray, and squish (yes!) it in place. Fun fun for little and big hands. Add more oil on top and squish again. Doughy yummy cellulite. Add good flakey salt (I use Maldon) and fresh herbs. I used some rosemary I had on my windowsill. I could easily use some dried. Or thyme. Or basil. Oooh, and tomatoes. And olives. All up to you.

I didn't bother to proove it some more and chucked it in a 220 degrees celcius oven for apporoximate 20 minutes. Just leave it untill it's golden and brown.

Phew. That was a long one. Other recipies posted on request.


  1. You make bread making sound so simple that even I might try it. Loving the new photos.

  2. Your focaccia recipe sounds delicious, but I have to convert all the measurements to their American equivalents... grr!

  3. Colleen: I have to do the same the other way around :-)

  4. You are truly a marvel.
    MasterChef even.


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