Jamie Oliver‘s Apple & Walnut Risotto with Gorgonzola quickly became Apple & Almond when I realized I had already eaten all of the walnuts at home – but luckily I still had almonds! Risotto is a dish I had been wanting to prepare but had been unsure about because it is so much work. But I figured with 38 recipes behind me I’d give it a go! The result was delcious and rich! I substituted the marjoram with thyme (as Jamie suggested as an alternative) and left out the parmesan because 3 cheeses seemed too much to me. If I make it again, which I think I will, I will leave out the goat cheese and stick with only gorgonzola.
New recipe #38 is another recipe from My New Roots! This time I tried her recipe for Wild Mushroom Lentil Burgers with Cashew Garlic Sauce. Although the flavors were delicious (mushrooms, garlic, olives lentils, rosemary, and thyme), I accidentally blended the ingredients for the burger too well and I created a paste instead of a nice chunky mixture to make the patties. The sauce was so delicious with the burger and avocado!
To celebrate Koen’s first paycheck from his new job, we invited Koen’s parents out for dinner at The Glorious. The Glorious’s sommelier, Jurgen Lijcops, who is often on Flemish TV speaking about wine, has created a winelist for the restaurant that is always evolving, depending on the month and season. For any wine lover, a trip to The Glorious is a must! I had been there once before for Christmas dinner with my colleagues and really enjoyed the food. Because of the wine and food, Koen and I thought this would be a great restaurant for celebrating his first paycheck! It was a bit more eventful than we expected (we were brought the wrong wine, the waiter spilled soup on my father-in-law, and a glass broke), but we still enjoyed the wine, food, and company!
Because of my success with the Summer Samosas, I decided to try yet another recipe from My New Roots – Summer Stuffed Patty Pans! The main ingredients are patty pan squashes, quinoa, peas, kale, onion, garlic, and goat cheese. I know kale is difficult/impossible to find in Belgium outside of the winter season and had already planned to use spinach, but I thought for sure that I could find a summer squash. But after visiting the Natuurhuis (Antwerp’s organic grocery store) and the Delhaize, I gave up and on the spot decided on bell peppers. Luckily the spinach and bell peppers worked well together! This was also my first time using caraway seeds, and the combination of all of the flavors were so delicious!
Ever since I saw this recipe on My New Roots, I have been dying to try it! I finally found the time on a day off to make the Fully-Loaded Spring Samosas with Sweet n’ Spicy Mint Chutney. The filling, the coconut on top, the mint chutney (the sauce especially!), everything was so flavorful and delicious! There was only one thing Koen and I would have preferred – pastry instead of rice paper. I understand that she uses the rice paper to make it a gluten-free recipe, but I don’t have celiac disease and I love traditional samosas and found the rice paper a bit too crunchy. But this was an amazing recipe and I will definitely make them again!
For Koen’s Oma’s 85th Birthday Party, the family hosted a get together catered by the children and grandchildren! As my blog can attest, we all love to cook and eat well! Koen and I made savory dishes, chicken legs and chicken salads while the rest of the family made sweets and other delicious treats!
At the end of my parents’ visit in May, we had to visit Arie and Petra! After eating a delicious lunch, we were surprised with a trip to Gouda! I think most Americans know Gouda because of the cheese with the same name, but Gouda is also famous for its stroopwafels, a particular favorite of my dad’s and mine. While in Gouda, we made our own stroopwafels! What a wonderful, wonderful day full of surprises and treats!
Sometimes when I’m not sure what I’d like to cook, I just look around my kitchen to see what is laying around. This time I found a can of artichoke hearts! It had been a while since I had made pasta, so I searched for a dish with artichokes and pasta and found a recipe for Pasta Lazio. Koen and I both loved this dish! There were so many delicious flavors and textures. I will definitely make this dish again!
One thing about having a biobakske, a delivery of local organic produce, is that your vegetables dictate what you’ll be eating for dinner! From the delivery I used the fennel and tomatoes to make Jamie Oliver’s “Fantastic Tomato & Fennel Salad with Flaked Barbeque Fish”. For my next dish I wanted to find a recipe for the turnips. Most of the turnip recipes I found were for mashes and as side dishes. But then I finally found an interesting meal that was able to incorporate also the carrots and spring onions from the biobakske, Soy-Braised Pork Loin with Carrots and Turnips. I substituted the Pork Country Ribs with Pork Loin because it was the only cut I could find in the grocery store. But the results were fantastic and flavorful!
Ever since Koen and I have been together, almost 8 years ago, my mother has been dying to make a day trip to Delft in the Netherlands. Now we’ve finally made it happen! Delft is a picture perfect Dutch city known for it’s blue and white china and the painter Johannes Vermeer (Girl with a Pearl Earring). We enjoyed a wonderful day walking along the canals, lunch at ‘t Vermeertje, exploring De Koninklijke Porceleyne Fles (Royal Delft, the only remaining factory of the 32 earthenware factories that were established in Delft during the 17th century), and sampling the awardwinning Dutch pannenkoeken (pancakes) from Stads-Koffyhuis.