Friday, March 30, 2012

My first crepes

I imagine most of you would be surprised to learn that I've never made crepes until a few days ago. They haven't been the usual weekend breakfast at any point in my life either. I guess that explains why I only remember about them when I see the pictures of food bloggers' creations. In retrospect, I've always thought they'd be somewhat tricky to make as the first image that would come to mind is the flying and flipping crepes, inevitably landing on the stove/floor. It's not exactly encouraging. Finally I thought I'd try though. 

Baby steps! That's what I've come to understand as the never failing recipe for achieving anything challenging. Let's face it. Crepes are challenging! So, I took the smallest pan I've got, pulled up my sleeves and began working on what turned out a dozen of delicious crepes. Thank you, TEFLON for making my life easier! :)


2 cups flour
2 cups milk
5 small eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 tb. sp. sugar
1/2 t. sp. salt


1. Mix all the ingredients until they've integrated well.
2. Heat a greased pan and pour enough of the mixture to cover the bottom of the pan, trying to keep the crepes as thin as possible. (Mine could have been thinner.)
3. Cook at a medium high temperature for about 1 minute and then turn the crepe to cook the top side.
4. Repeat the same with the rest of the mixture.

I had mine with honey (yummy), while also wishing for some fresh berries. 

The picture on the right is a nod to the very talented food photographer and stylist Eva Toneva who originated the idea about rose crepes presented in cups.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Poppy seeds crackers

Lunch ideas? Yea, sandwiches or salad! Come to think of it, crackers fall into the sandwich category, if you jazz them up a bit with cheese and fruit.


220 g. flour
3 tb. sp. olive oil
3 tb. sp. poppy seeds
1/2 t. sp. salt
1/2 t. sp. baking powder
warm water


1. Sift the flour and add the rest of the ingredients, except the water.
2. Start kneading adding as much water as you need to form soft and non-sticky dough.
3. Roll out the dough and cut it in whatever shapes you prefer.
4. Bake at 220 C until gold brown.

I added some cream cheese (ricotta is better), strawberries and honey to mine. 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Mixed salad

I realized I had inadvertently missed to show you a very cute picture in my last post, so instead of waiting for the end of the week (by which time I'm sure it'll be forgotten again), I'm stopping by for a quick post with a foodie note at the end.

While walking on the beach last week, we saw a man showing a pretty big fish he had captured to his wife (I presume), so she could take a picture of this glorious moment. I've seen this only in movies, so it definitely made an impression. Fortunately and in the spirit of a true paparazzi , my camera was still on (to be read as "always on"), so I quickly snapped a picture. :O

Inspired by the picture... I've had a few pieces of frozen salmon for a while now, so it was about time I made dinner with it. Mixed salad with greens, red pepper, carrot and maize added to the baked salmon bites with potatoes and herbs. I hadn't cooked salmon and potatoes together in aluminum foil, but they turned out delicious. 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Blueberry yoghurt smoothie

Normally, I'm an all-seasons person. So, whenever I get the question "which is your favorite season?", I stare thoughtfully for a few moments as if I'm trying to figure it out yet again and then answer vaguely "I like them all". That's pretty much how I feel about most things. There's just something specific I like about each thing (unless I totally hate it) and depending on what I'm looking for at that particular moment, I choose different things. Let me tell you, that can be exceptionally confusing, as I would go from one end to another. So, I'm known as a person of many minds. I keep it interesting for myself that way. Another thing I'm known for is getting off topic all the time. Like now. You'll see that a lot here. 

Although I like all seasons, it's spring now and I'm just about head over heels with it. After the mild but dark and silent winter, every time I hear the birds in the morning, I get butterflies in the stomach. The colors are still pretty dull and uninspiring, but you can feel it in the air... life! So, now is the time to start with the long walks and that's just what I, my sister and a friend did on Friday. Fabulous! This is why I'm also showing you a few pictures from our walk.

The moment I see a duck, a swan or a rabbit, I forget about any of my companions and go to look and photograph them. This time I actually managed to follow my dad's advice and approach two ducks with slow and fluid movements. They still didn't look too trusting at me, but at least they waited until I was real close to jump in the water. 

Even though for the most part the day was sunny and warm, by the time we were getting back from our walk, it changed so quickly and drastically, that I felt like I was transported in an alternate version of that day. I have to say that's one of the things I like most about spring though. It keeps surprising you.

Once I saw the approach of the boat below, I ran towards the beach, so I could take a picture of it in this mystic weather... did so too. But what I connect this moment with now is the scene that followed. Just as I was finished taking the boat picture and leaving, I saw a guy with a camera quickly approaching the rocks in front of me and immediately taking a sniper's position to photograph that same boat. You always know when you see a keen photography enthusiast!

Moving on to food!

We realized that there is a new season of a Bulgarian reality show called "The cherry of the cake". Every week five well-known people are chosen to cook for each other during the week, each of them hosting a dinner for the rest of the participants. It shows the entire process of selecting the dishes, preparing them and hosting the dinner, all the while being entertained by the host's stories. A professional chef also offers comments about how the food is being prepared and gives suggestions for improvements. It's very entertaining and educative, which makes it perfect for my taste. So, while watching an episode of it, I got really annoyed with one of the participants, who constantly commented on what she wouldn't eat. So very picky! Then I realized I'm kind of like that too, which is something I haven't really considered as upsetting until now. This means, I'm gonna be working on my attitude towards some of the undesirable foods and hopefully I won't find myself annoying before long.

Today, I enjoyed an hour of jogging which meant that I needed something lighter for lunch afterwords. I've noticed how after exercise I can't eat anything for about an hour and then suddenly I feel starved and light-headed. Not good! However, I've found the perfect energy booster and that's fruit yoghurt smoothie. I'm a big fan of blueberries... always have been, so I go for them any time I can. That kind of makes me nostalgic about the good old childhood, when I'd go to the mountain with my parents and pick berries all day long, while shouting at the echo "Grandma bear, come here" (sounds better in Bulgarian...hehe). 

When making smoothies, I never follow recipe proportions. Everyone has a preference to how dense or liquid they want it and which ingredients they want to taste more of. So, I'm just gonna say that I made mine with blueberries, banana, yoghurt and water. Well, the blueberries dominated certainly. It disappeared faster than it came about! :)

On a visit to the library this week, I accidentally spotted a book on Kofi Annan and I immediately thought I want to take it with me home. It's in a fairly understandable Danish, which makes it all that much more interesting for me and I'll share what I thought of it when I finish. I also got some books on textile print design, which is something I'm very interested to learn. I did some research on it during Christmas and it could be possible to also take a course on mixed media and digital print design in the summer, if I decide that I want some formal guidance. The best part of the course is that you get some feedback and notable exposure, so it's definitely something worth considering. 

It's too late, so I cut this post short of the Danish version. :/

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Filo dough with leek, cheese and egg filling (Banitsa)

I'M BACK! I should apologize for the long absence, but ever since I said that I would post only on Sundays, they've become busy/lazy days when I don't feel like even checking up the blog. So, this mid-week post is a compensation of sorts.

On Saturday, we (Bulgarians) celebrated our national holiday commemorating 3 March 1878 when the Russian-Turkish war ended and after 500-year yoke, Bulgaria gained its freedom from the Ottoman (Turkish) empire. A day when I remember how grateful I am to the Russian and Bulgarian men who have given their lives, so that we could be free. Although as a child, I didn't give the holiday much thought and I dreaded the long speeches of statesmen and the folk music concerts on television, adulthood has given me a bit of wisdom. Recalling all the history lessons we've had on the hardships of life under foreign rule, the loss of lives and the struggle to keep our national identity, I feel very proud of my ancestors, who kept the Bulgarian spirit in a time when both Turkish and Greek influences threatened it (I hope nobody misunderstands, as I carry no ill feelings towards either nation. The past is the past.) Although I'm uncertain that we as a nation possess the dignity of the ones before us, I also know that every generation has its battles. I just hope we handle ours graciously.

Enough with the history lesson though. Let's get a bit culinary. My contribution to the holiday was a traditional Bulgarian dish called banitsa (filo-dough with leek, cheese and eggs filling). There are all sorts of versions of it both savory and sweet, but I made mine the traditional way. I can find filo-dough only in the Arabian store here, but with a little time on one's hands, it's easy to make at home. That's what I do. I have this crazy idea that if a meal is festive, it has to take quite some time to make. Buying the fillo-dough would mean just assembling the products and throwing the banitsa in the oven. It just doesn't sit right with me. That being said, the special ingredient of a festive meal is the people one shares it with, so if time is an issue, it's not a crime to take a shortcut. Moreover, fillo-dough is made just with flour, salt, vegetable oil, vinegar and water, so it's one of those products you can buy from the store and have no worry about its ingredients, etc.

I personally would probably always roll out my filo-dough as it's something I've watched my grandmother do and I feel very honored to carry the tradition in my family. So, this is how it goes:


500 g. flour
1 tb. sp. vinegar
1 tb. sp. olive oil
1/2 t.sp. salt
warm water

8 t. sp. olive oil

250 g. feta cheese
2-3 leeks
2 eggs
parsley (optional)


1. Sift the flour in a big bowl and make a well in it. 
2. Add the vinegar, olive oil, salt and a little warm water.
3. Start kneading and add as much water as you need until you form soft dough.
4. Cut the dough in 12 pieces and form balls with them. 
5. Roll out a circle from each ball the size of a cup plate. When you roll out the first, place it on a plate. Spread 1 t.sp. olive oil on top of it and then add the second circle on top of the first. Spread 1 t.sp. olive oil on it and add the third circle on top. Do the same thing with the rest of the circles, arranging them three by three, by three, so on. At the end, you should have 4 sets of dough circles. 
6. Roll out each set as thinly as you can. You should be able to see through each leaf, when it's rolled out well. In order to make the process easy, sprinkle flour on the bottom of the surface where you'll be working and also on top of the circle sets every time the dough starts to stick or doesn't roll out easily and smoothly. Congratulations, you now have 4 sheets of filo-dough.
7. Cook the diced leek for about 5-10 min, adding 1/4 cup water, so it can soften.
8. Beat the eggs and mix with the cheese. Add the leek and some parsley.
9. Spread from the mix on each filo-dough sheet and roll it. Arrange in a round form.

10. Bake in a 200 C oven until gold brown. 

Natural yoghurt drink goes very well with it. I just added a spoon of yoghurt to the plate. Hope you enjoy it! :)

Jeg har ikke skrevet i et stykke tid, men  lørdag fejrede jeg Bulgariens national helligdag med en traditionel ret, som jeg ønskede at dele med digDet kaldes banitsa - lavet af filodej med ost, porre og æg påfyldning. Jeg er ikke sikker på, om du kan finde det i supermarkeder, men du kan prove med Arabiske butikker eller den BulgarskMad butik i København (hvis du bor der).

Alternativt kan du også prøve at gøre det derhjemmeDet er ret nemtmen det kræver omkring en time at gøre.


500 gmel
1 spiseskefuld eddike
1 spiseskefuld olivenolie
1/2 teske salt
varmt vand

8 teske olivenolie

250 g. feta ost
2-3 porrer
2 æg

1Sigt melet i en stor skål og lav en fordybning i det.
2Tilsæt eddikeolivenolie, salt og lidt varmt vand.
3Begynd æltning og tilsæt så meget vand som du har brug for, indtil dejen er blød
4Skær dejen i 12 stykker og form bolde med dem.
5Udrulle en cirkel fra hver kugle med størrelsen af et bæger plade. Når du rullerden førsteplacere den på en tallerkenSpred 1 teske olivenolie på toppen af ​​det og derefter tilsættes den anden cirkel oven på den førsteSpred 1 teske olivenolie på den og tilføje den tredje cirkel på toppen. Gør det samme med resten af cirklerneDer bør være 4 sæt af tre dejen cirkler, når du er færdig.
6. Udrulle hvert sæt  tyndt som du kanDu skal se gennem hvert bladnår det er rullet ud godt. Drys mel på bunden af ​​overfladen, hvor du vil arbejde, og også på toppen af ​​cirklen sætter hver gang dejen begynder at klæbe eller når den ikke udrulle let og gnidningsløstTillykkedu nu har 4 blad filo-dej.
7Kog hakkede porre for omkring 5-10 minutter med 1/4 kop vand, så det kan blødgøre.
8Pisk æg og blandes med ostenTilsæt porre og nogle persille.
9. Spred blandingen på hver filo dej. 
Arranger i en rund form.
10. Bakes i 200 C ovn indtil guld brun.

Serveres med yoghurt naturel. Velbekomme!