Feiertage sind doch was Herrliches. Seit ich Praktikum mache weiß ich sowas richtig zu schätzen, genauso wie Wochenende. Als Student macht es ja oft keinen Unterschied ob es Dienstag oder Sonntag ist und Feiertage fand ich immer nervig weil dann alles zu hat. Tja…man wird noch Weise auf seine alten Tage. Auf jeden Fall freue ich mich sehr ausschlafen zu dürfen. Passend zu Ostern wollte ich auch was backen aber die Ostertradition ist bei uns nicht so wirklich ausgeprägt. Weihnachten fallen mir da irgendwie mehr Rezepte ein. Aber da ich seit zwei Wochen den Drang verspüre Möhren-Cupcakes zu backen und der Osterhase bekanntlich gerne Möhrchen ist, dachte ich mir, kann ich mit diesem Rezept nicht viel falsch machen.
Technisch gesehen habe ich dieses Rezept schon mal gepostet, und zwar als Möhrenkuchen. Ist das jetzt schummeln wenn ich dasselbe nehme? Na egal, ich liebe dieses Rezept und bevor ich irgendein anderes nehme mit dem ich nicht vertraut bin greife ich lieber zum altbewährten. Dieses Rezept wird nämlich wunderbar locker und saftig. Und das Frischkäse Topping passt perfekt dazu. Ich muss dazu sagen, ich finde Cupcakes super, aber leider sind die manchmal doch arg süß und klebrig. Ich persönlich mag es lieber, wenn das Topping as Frischkäse oder Mascarpone besteht, als wenn man Butter und Puderzucker nimmt. Aber über Geschmack lässt sich ja bekanntlich streiten und man könnte statt dem Frischkäse bestimmt auch ein anderes Topping für diese Cupcakes benutzen. Probiert es aus und sagt mir bescheid.
Spring is here. The weather was so great last week, warm and sunny; it almost felt like the beginning of summer. Everything is blooming and blossoming, there are just so many colors everywhere. And I did manage to get a light sunburn just from a picnic in the park. Today was the first day where the weather was grey and rainy so I decided to get me some spring in a jar. With rhubarb-strawberry jam!
I love when rhubarb come in season. It´s a reminder that winter is really over and it means that all the other wonderful summer-fruits are soon in season. I knew I wanted to make something with rhubarb this weekend but I wasn´t quite sure what. The idea to make jam was pretty spontaneous and since rhubarb itself tends to be a bit sour, I decided to add some strawberries as well.
It´s actually really easy to make jam. All you need is fruit, sugar and patience. There are still some things that can go wrong and I managed to do all of them during my jam-sessions so I guess I am an expert now. Me and my siblings used to make blueberry jam every year for my mums birthday when we spent our vacation camping in Sweden. It just never occurred to us to be prepared beforehand, so we always bought some sugar at the local supermarket and since the instructions where in Swedish, we didn´t understand a thing. So we mostly used the trial-and-error system which lead to all kind of different jams. One was really stiff, the other one extremely liquid and some even had a consistency that was quite similar to normal jam. Yay us!
At the moment I am finding out what it means to be an adult. I´m doing an internship and that means getting up early. And being gone for most of the day. And not having that much time left for baking and even less desire to make something complex and fancy once I get home. Seriously, kudos to everyone who is blogging on top of their full time job! How do you manage that? I am already looking forward to the free time and flexibility college life offers.
In college I already noticed that I am not a huge canteen fan. Most of the ones at college do offer a great variety and try to be as fresh and organic as possible. And the one at my Internship is not bad either. I just prefer to cook at home or bring my own stuff to work. Before I started this internship I was imagining all the yummy things I would take to work but reality is me frantically searching for stuff to throw together the night before. Maybe I should reconsider the whole grown-up-responsibility-thing.
Sooo, here comes the birthday cake number two. Because March is the month where I get to live out all my cake making dreams. This one is a delicious strawberry cake with a lot of white chocolate and whipped cream. Oh, and a vanilla bean. Because vanilla beans make everything better. I know that strawberries are not really in season right now but what am I supposed to do when my sister dearly wants strawberries for her birthday? But if you wait until summer to make this cake, you won´t regret it. It´s delicious!
The recipe is a mixture of combining two recipes and adding my own ideas. I´ve tried both recipes before and both were really good. But each felt like there was a small thing missing. So I decided to take the best from both recipes and create something new. The result was perfect! I used the dough from the German recipe because I love sponge cake (is that really the correct translation?). Anyway, here in Germany, cakes are usually made with a dough called “Biskuit” which is really soft and fluffy. I´ve tried other recipes that used a rather normal cake dough for the layering and they were good but just a bit to firm and stiff for me. Then I added a lot of strawberries, mascarpone, whipped cream and white chocolate. The best thing about the white chocolate decoration is that you don´t have to worry about messing up the frosting of the cake. Just add little pieces of white chocolate and everybody will think you´re a cake-decorating expert.
March is a good month. Mostly because three out of the six family members celebrate their birthday in March and you know what that means right? Cake! Lots of it. When I was younger, my mom would always make our traditional birthday cake with lots of chocolate and M&Ms on top. But when my baking addiction kicked in it was my responsibility to make something special for each birthday boy or girl. And since my brother loves Oreo cookies, it was obvious that I had to make something involving chocolate and Oreos.
I´ve tried different recipes for Oreo cakes before. If found this recipe in the new edition of Sweet Paul and I knew I just had to try it. It was similar to the recipes I´ve made before but just a little bit fancier. And as you can see, the result was stunning. Doesn´t it look beautiful? Well, I have to admit that the cake only lasted that way for 10 Minutes. Then, as I was trying to get a good picture, the background collapsed and smashed half of the cake. It was a bit cricked afterwards and since I didn´t have much frosting left, the end result looked a bit different from what I am presenting to you. Oh well, nobody´s perfect. It still tasted great!
I think there are two very different persons living inside me. One is the inner fat kid that is constantly craving for cookies, cake and ice cream. The other one is a health-junkie, obsessed with fresh and healthy food. If I eat to much cake, bread and pizza, my body desperetaly longs for salad and vegetables. If I try to stick to an all-healthy diet, my body wants cake. The two balance each other out I guess. The health junkie in me makes sure I eat well and take care of myself. The inner fat kid helps me not to take everything to seriously and enjoy life and sugar every once in a while. Maybe it´s not the worst system after all.
So since I can´t be living off of cookies and cupcakes, my daily cooking consists of a lot of salad (technically speaking…is that even cooking?) Anyway, I love salad. I tried a bunch of different recipes and ingredients throughout the years and at the moment, my all time favourite ingredients for salad are avocado, tomatoes, green onion and feta cheese. These are the basics for almost all of my salads and from there I start adding things I like, like nuts, chickpeas, cucumber or corn.
There is an old German fairytale about the “Schlaraffenland” which, according to my dictionary, can be translated into the land of milk and honey. It´s a land where laziness and relaxation are the biggest virtues. Nobody works, the food falls from the sky or grows on trees and instead of water, the rivers carry milk and honey. When I was a kid I always wanted to got there. Not because I was so lazy or obsessed with food (well actually…I always loved food) but because, in order to get there you have to eat your way through a mountain of semolina pudding. A whole mountain! of semolina pudding!!!. I love semolina. Unfortunately, my family was more into rice pudding and I´ve never met someone who is as crazy about semolina as I am. To be honest, I don´t even know if the concept of semolina pudding is known outside of Germany. I know about Polenta in Italy but that is not the same. And of all the countries I have lived in, none had a huge tradition or even knew about semolina pudding. So I´d love to get some feedback…any other countries out there who experiment with different semolina recipes? In Germany it is well known and a typical dish from your childhood. I´ve always loved it more than rice pudding and when a couple of years ago someone introduced me to semolina mousse I was hooked! Since then it has been my all time favourite dessert!
Anybody who might be a bit skeptical about this recipe now…try it! It´s so fluffy and sweet and creamy and just…amazing. Trust me on this one.