I want a smokehouse

And another work week done.

While sitting at breakfast today, I perused a dead-tree edition of Die Zeit. Soma pointed me to an interview with a famous cook, pardon: chef, who expressed some entertaining thoughts. For one, he opines that lasagna is an “infantile” dish – unfortunately he did not elaborate where that opinion did come from. However I am so nosy that I tried to find more on the webs, but I just found a blog entry where he seems to extend the application of “infantile” to the whole venerable family of pasta because “even babies have slurping and sucking reflexes”. Errr, maybe there is some sort of a connection, but be honest: who slurps lasagna?

He then went on to lament the fact that people nowadays just eat processed food instead of cooking, and he boasted: “we only use fresh ingredients. Even the bacon we use is home-made by us”. Oh, I see. Excuse me for a second while I discuss with my neighbours the options of having a smokehouse.

And his advice for people with little time to cook: “just have some maccheroni al pepe, an old Roman dish”. Noodles with pepper. Noodles in general. Why thank you, I’d never have thought of cooking that one after 10 hours of – Wait, this must be a trap! Why do you suddenly recommend doing infantile dishes?


It is not that I am just being obtuse or snarky on purpose here. I appreciate people who suggest to live slower, eat better and stop following trends, I really do.
Just sometimes it is not quite clear whether these people still are in touch with the reality of mere mortals (who for example don’t boast a smokehouse).




Almost milk

I try to be a good vegetarian, but I really really like my milk. So I tried to find substitutes and tested them with tea, my favourite coffee, café au lait, cocoa, and muesli/corn flakes.

Spar Natur pur Bio Soja Drink: a little watery, I was not convinced.

Natuerlich fuer uns Sojadrink Natur Calcium – Zielpunkt has it. It’s too bitter for my taste though.

Provamel Soya Natural (unsweetened)

  • works well in tea.
  • It’s a bit watery, but acceptable with the right amount of cocoa.

Alpro Soya light

  • I made a bowl of café au lait with it and must say: not too bad. Creamy/milky enough for my taste, not too dominant.
  • It works with cornflakes as well.

Alpro Soya

Provamel Reis-Mandel

  • gives coffee a nice nutty taste and is creamy enough

Billa Bio Soja Drink
Rewe Bio Soja Drink
Alnatura Reis drink Natur – todo
Natumi SoWell Soja-Reis-Hafer
Alpro Mandelmilch

The Honey Incident

As I wrote in last year’s Hall of Food Shame post, I lost half a kilo of high-quality honey to the fickleness of a plastic shopping bag whose strap broke. One minute after buying both items. Needless to say, I was moderately annoyed and immediately sewed several fabric shopping bags which I distributed into all of the purses and backpacks I use in daily live. This way I will never have to rely on crappy plastic bags again.

I also started to wrap my christmas gifts in fabric bags; there are always remains of pretty fabrics to make gift bags out of, less waste is created, and presentees can reuse the bag.

Yummy chickpea sunday

Today’s nom – braised coconut spinach and chickpeas with dried tomatoes, found at thekitchn.com – was very simple to prepare. The only thing to remember is to soak chickpeas overnight, if using dried ones, and then cook those bastards for at least one hour.

I used oil instead of ghee to keep it vegan, but stuck to the recipe otherwise. Verdict: easy to make, tastes NOMinous and is very filling, even as main dish. The recipe say the remains can be frozen, so will try that out too.


Wall of (food) shame

I decided to take notes of all the food stuff I threw away in 2012

  • 500g of salty snacks
  • 2l milk
  • 2 pieces of cake
  • 2 green peppers
  • 400g bread
  • 250ml soup
  • 4 apples
  • 2 oranges
  •  250g pumpkin (processed, ready-to-heat)
  • 300g wheat flour
  • 1 Mozzarella
  • 4 homemade muffins

Most of the time the things went bad during periods of long working hours (and I did not cook at home).

Working less might improve a couple of things, it seems.

DYI Ramen

Since I am not convinced that instant food is exceptionally healthy</sarcasm> I just tried this Shōyu-Ramen recipe, vegetarian style (replacing the meat with courgette). I tried to omit any ingredients containing artificial flavour enhancers. Also I did not add sake and I replaced nori with wakame.

Verdict after a large bowl of the result: NOM.

Now I need unsuspecting human lab rats – any volunteers?

Aah, and I just found the recipe for Jamie Oliver’s Curry – I made it several times when I still had access to the cookbook, and it’s a wonderful recipe: roasting spices, grounding them, the smells, the taste when it’s finished…. Nooom. Lab ra- volunteers?