A Culinary Journey Through the World and Time – and a Peach & Goats Cheese Salad

1409.1_coverAfter just over two weeks of the laziest and most relaxing Mediterranean summer holiday, with a total abstinence from every form of electronic communication and digital devices, I do feel a bit out of practice as I sit down at the little table on our balcony to share some memories (and a recipe) of my summer vacation with you, an old (ancient!) laptop before me (when have I last used this thing?!), a glass of chilled blanc de noir next to it, and the last hours of sunlight (and the last 40% of battery) ticking away. Continue reading

“Summer Of Supper” in Cologne and Stracciatella Cheese with Barbecued Apricots & Tarragon

coverLast Friday, I took the cooking out of my home kitchen and joined my friends from the Frankfurt/Cologne based supper club Ceci n’est pas un restaurant for the wonderful Summer Of Supper event in Cologne. Six supper clubs (sort-of underground nonprofit pop-up restaurants run by ambitious amateur cooks) were invited to each host a dinner night for 30 people. We cooked a summer-celebration 5 course supper menu for a mixed and merry food loving crowd, and boy (or girl or other) – did we have a great time! To start the evening off, I made a dish based on my homemade Stracciatella cheese, which you should absolutely try and which I will tell you how to make below (where I will also tell you about a ‘hidden bonus track’ in the recipe…). Continue reading

Raw Chilled Pea & Coconut Soup with Tarragon

Raw Chilled Pea & Coconut Soup with Tarragon @ bragnbutter.wordpress.com

Whenever someone asks me what my ‘most favorite dish in the world’ is, I’m really just baffled by this question. How could anyone have just one favorite dish?! How can you compare, say, sticky Korean ribs, a moist and glistening risotto milanese and braised lentils? Exactly. I just love eating. In general. Which means I basically love every food, cuisine, ingredient, style – as long as it’s well produced and prepared, tasty, and fits my cravings. And cravings (I am not telling you anything new here, I know) can take you to weird places. Such as the place where I am preparing a cold soup that is downright able to save the world (according to other people’s standards or wild imagination): it’s simple, quick, raw, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free and – wait for it – really delicious at the same time. You wanna come to my weird place? Follow me!

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Fava Bean, Green Asparagus and Watercress Salad with Garlick-&-Nigella Dressing

Fava Bean, Green Asparagus and Watercress Salad with Garlick-&-Nigella Dressing @ bragnbutter.wordpress.comThink of this as my version of a green smoothie. The best thing about it? It’s not an actual green smoothie. This salad will most probably not make you live considerably longer, cure any diseases or make you lose 6 pounds in two hours, I’m sorry. But, instead of being a more or less desirable pulpy concoction of fruit and leafy greens, it is an appealing and delicious assembly that celebrates the textures of spring vegetables and comes with a ton of flavor: creamy fava beans and tender green asparagus, tumbled with crunchy watercress and cool mint are tossed in a simple dressing of sharp young garlic and pungent nigella seed. It’s a joy to eat and look at, and to me, joy is what eating and food should be all about.

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The Week’s Eats in Fast Forward: Triple Tuna, Salmon on Vanilla Risotto, Beef Pearls & Pasta and something for a Pav♥a-Lova

1402.2_coverThis last week has been FRANTIC, with intentional caps lock. And additional exclamation mark. After a never ending workday on Monday, work on my desk kept piling higher by the minute I was at the office on Tuesday. The rest of the week until now: no different. So why, you might wonder, are there four images above, indicating four recipes to follow, and not just one as usual? Have I gone mad? Not entirely.

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Zesty Cedro Lemon Caesar

1312.3_coverAlthough winter isn’t really that grey and gloomy in Germany this year, avoiding the winter blues is still one of my main concerns in life from November until – June. Being one of those people who are especially prone to weather-induced moodiness, I consider it a service to the community to find effective ways of preventing it. One of the most potent solutions is soaking up as much light as I can get: in addition to spending my lunch break out in the open and planning little roam-abouts in blindingly lit shopping malls on my way back home, I add some sunlight to the menu plan. Citrus are just the way to bring some brightness to a grey day and almost every dull dish. Luckily, winter is when most of them are in season, and even if not here, courtesy of globalization they are at my fingertips on my local market. Continue reading

Neon Crunch & Punch Pickle

Neon Crunch & Punch PickleWith Scandinavian cuisine growing in vogue during the last few years, the humble practice of pickling has become all the rage. At first, I didn’t even care. Now I am a heavy user. Continue reading