All posts filed under: Cooking the Van

Nomadic recipes.

Italian way

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LE TORE RISOTTO  (gluten and lactose free) Ingredients: 1 onion (cipolla) 2 celery stalks (sedano) Le Tour tomato coulis (coulis al pomodoro “le Tore”) Le Tore olive oil (olio d’oliva “le Tore”) Recipe: Cut onion very fine into small cubes, pour into a skillet coated with olive oil. Remove celery leaves. Cut stalks lengthwise. When width is thin enough, cut stalks into very small cubes. Pour into skillet. Put skillet on high heat and sauté celery and onion for 5 minutes. Add the tomato coulis. Salt the mixture. Leave temperature on high for 5-10 minutes until moisture from tomatoes evaporates. Stir from time to time with a wooden spoon. Pour risotto rice into the sauce. Stir constantly. Let rice cook in coulis on high heat for 5 minutes, then lower heat. When rice begins to stick, add water. Repeat several times whenever necessary. The rice normally cooks in 20 minutes, but test it often to stop cooking at the desired tenderness. An extra touch: 2 garlic cloves, cut in half (aglio) Le Tore olive oil …

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TZATZIKI!

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In Greece, no restaurant is without tzatziki. It’s always there. Prices range from €2.50 to €4.50 and it’s normally served with the “mezze” (small appetisers to share or a snack before moving on to more serious fare). We ate tzatziki (almost) every day we spent in Greece. While it usually has the same basic ingredients: cucumber + yoghurt + garlic, its flavour changes based on the cooks and the region. Here’s a taste of 2 varieties gleaned during our wanderings: -TZATZIKI HALKIDIKI Ingredients: 1 cucumber: angouraki Full-fat Greek yoghurt (dessert-type yoghurt): giaouti tin elliniki 1 garlic clove: skordo olive oil: elaiolado dill: anitho Recipe: Peel the cucumber, remove seeds, and cut into cubes. Place in a sieve with some salt, let drain. Put yoghurt into a bowl. With a garlic press, crush the garlic clove in the yoghurt. Check on cucumbers in the sieve, make sure liquid has been removed. If necessary, press with your hands. When it’s well drained of its fluids, mix into garlic yoghurt. Stir. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve …

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Wild peppermint tisane

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Recognising peppermint is easy: the leaves look just like the mint we’re used to, the only difference is at the tip with its little purplish-blue flower. It doesn’t grow alone – look for shrubs. Gather a big bouquet and tie the base together with some string or an elastic band. Hang it upside down and let it dry for 3-4 days. Check that the leaves inside the bouquet are dry too. When everything is properly dry, pick off each flower and each leaf and pop them in a clean, dry jar. Your after-dinner tisane is ready! Once your water is boiling add a dozen leaves and one or two flowers to your teapot and let it infuse for a good 10 minutes. Taste!

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The calming cream

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Calming cream for bites, redness, itching! Ingredients: – plantain leaves – olive oil (cold-pressed virgin extract, preferably organic) – beeswax recipe: Fill a jar with chopped plantain leaves. Cover the leaves with olive oil, close the jar and let macerate three weeks. After 3 weeks, heat the wax in a pan until liquefied Strain out the chopped leaves, add the filtered fluid to the liquid wax. Mix in the pan, pour into the bottle and shake the mixture until it thickens. Apply directly to skin whenever needed!

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Perchs & herrings in the Finnish way

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Kala keittö (pronounced kala’ keïteuh) Fish soup Ingredients Fish: kala Perch: ahven (pronounced ah’rven) Potatoes: peruna (pronounced perrona) Sweet potatoes: batatti (pronounced batat’ti) Onion: sipuli (pronounced sipoli) Ginger: inkivääri (pronounced inkivairi) Vegetable stock cube: vihannes liemi kuutio (pronounced vianess lieymi koutïo) Dill: tilli Method Bring a large pan of water to the boil Gut and descale the fish Cut the potatoes and sweet potatoes into large cubes. Slice the onions and finely chop the dill. Cut the ginger into small cubes. When the water boils, add the stock cube, potatoes and sweet potatoes. Wait 10 minutes before adding the onion, dill and ginger. Wait another 5 minutes before adding the fish whole to the soup, head first so that the tail is not submerged 20 minutes later, it’s ready! Alternative recipe: perch on the wood fire… No comment! Sinappisilli Herring and mustard sauce Ingredients Sinappisilli (a traditional Finnish sauce made with herring and mustard) Dill: tilli Potatoes: peruna (pronounced perrona) Method Bring some water to the boil and add the potatoes. When they are cooked …

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Island sausage

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Susanne welcomed us to Fanø island with open arms. Originally from an island further east of Denmark, she settled on Fanø 12 years ago and is a community nurse for this island district. As we entered through her garden gate, she asked that we close it securely behind us because the deer adore her plants and other edible delights. Today, Susanne will teach us how to cook a typical Danish dish and dessert. Kold kartoffel salat & pølser Translation: sausages and cold potato salad Ingredients – 1 onion, løg – 800 g new potatoes, små kartoffel – 250 g crème fraîche – 100 ml liquid yoghurt – chives, chopped, purløg – sunflower oil, solsikke olie – butcher’s choice sausages, slagter pølser Recipe Instructions – Boil the potatoes in advance and allow them to cool and harden – Finely grate the onion – Cut potatoes into thin strips – Mix the crème fraîche, yoghurt, and chives. Then add the potatoes and mix carefully. Season as needed. – In a hot frying pan, brown the sausages in a neutral …

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Mairead’s scones

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Mairead lives in Bunberg with her three children and her Jack Russell cross, “Nibbles”. The family pet is aptly named, as our shoes soon find out. Mairead used to teach in a Montessori school, an alternative method of education. She explains her belief that it is essential to “allow children to live” without micro-managing them to excess, and to get them outside as much as possible so they don’t stay glued to a screen. This evening Mairead’s children are not at home but she has visitors: Elaine and her 13-year-old daughter Sarah. Women are taking over the kitchen tonight. INGREDIENTS 225g of selfraising flour ; 8oz (ounce) of selfraising flour 150ml of milk ; 1/4 pint of milk one pinch of salt 25g of caster sugar ; 1oz (ounce) of caster sugar 25g of butter ; 1oz (ounce) of butter 1 egg RECIPE Tip the flour into a bowl and add the sugar, butter and salt. Rub together gently with your fingers, not your palms, until the mixture looks like fine sand. Gradually add the …

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bocaux

What’s with the jars?

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So you’re getting ready for a van journey. It’s all about the logistics, just like setting sail. You would never set sail without taking supplies and likewise you would never hit the road without provisioning! Good, with that settled… what are we going to bring? We’re not on a racing boat, we don’t need to shorten our toothbrushes just to lighten the load: we can afford to bring heavier stuff. And if we start running out of space, we can leave some things behind (like clothes, there are always too many clothes): because good grub is vital, or rather, a question of survival. Take, for example, a nice walk in the humid English countryside. You might find yourself unable to reach a local restaurant. Your only salvation is the food that you have brought with you. And even if we’re not talking about haute cuisine or gastronomy, we’re still talking about ‘good nosh’ all the same! And exhausted, what could be better than hearing a nice dish simmering away just as you settle down for the evening with a drink, while the sun sets behind the mountains …

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