27 June 2006

summer veggie dinners...

People often turn to veggies when its hot and it's quite understandable... When you already feel like a searing steak you do not really dream of having another one on your plate...

I do not take kindly to meat at all - even in winter when I feel like Italian gelato - and being a vegetarian for 10 years makes it much more easier to create dinners out of nothing...

Why nothing? Beacause the most often question that meat-eaters pose to veggie funs is: "So what the hell do you eat?!" Just like there was nothing else to deserve an honour of a dinner hero...

Here you have some of my latest summer dinners without a hint of bone or flesh...yet still quite sating :)

oats pancake with beans and ketchup

buckwheat with beetroots and broccolis

beet farfalle with veggies

21 June 2006

evening with oven...

family pizza still in the oven

There are days when oven really attracts me... Not as a machinery of course, but with this memory always present of my mother opening squeezing door to let out the aroma of fresh baked yeast pie... She is a master, truly...

I am a bit intmidated therefore to play with yeast - apart from pizza which does not require so much skill. I use dough receipe from Frances Mayes book "Bella Toscania"... it never fails!

Of course, as in a normal family, everybody has their dislikes and must have his piece customized... For me - plain indulgence: mozarella, tomatoes and basil... (with some garlic optionally or parsley instead of basil)

infaillible crust with classic topping

Guys of course can't do without ham...

ham & mushroom piece

And what is greater than dipping your tongue into melted cheese and inhaling the aroma of fresh yeast? Who can resist hot flesh of baked tomatoe? Definitely not me:)

deeper and deeper into joy of melted cheese

And while the oven is still hot - quickly made strawberry pie comes in and out. In case someone is still hungry...

I love watching berries drowning:)

best when still hot and moist

18 June 2006

Eatin light

It's not that I'm on a diet. Never ever any more. (I once went a bit too far, or too slim:)

But when weather is hot and some virus attacks you - truly painful for me in the last couple of days you really do not dream of t-bone steaks or cheesy tarts with onions... Do you?

I prefer sweet, moist and cold these days and that more often than ends up with some cereals, natural yoghurt and seasonal fruit. And nuts - everybody needs something to crunch on.

My usual lunches look something like that:

plate of fruit

rice pudding with plum jam & yoghurt

Of course, ice cream are girl's summer best friends (no matter what you hear from those tawny boys on the beach). I'm fortunate enough to have a firend who owns an Italian gelateria in my hometown (he is Italian bambino in fact). Recently I managed to shot 2 snaps of his lemon ice cream just ready made. But I'll bring you some more...... much more gorgeous:)))

lemon gelato

14 June 2006

Strawberries craze...

The most sexy fruit? Dipped in whipped cream or hot chocolate it always makes me a bit a over-emotional...

The season is in full now. Though, in Poland we still wait for the latest variety - small, very sweet, a bit wild:) This is Cashubian species and is most often used for preserves as it does not impress with appearance. But the taste... Pure indulgence.

My two hits are strawberries with pasta and yoghurt - as beneath:

and strawberry shake infused with some raspberry syrop:

10 June 2006

Dumplings as an entree...

Well, you have to start somehow and it's much better if you manage to whett the apetite of yours guests... Caviar, truffles, sushi? Neeeee...

What has always kept my chin up and made me mouth-watering are dumplings. Gnocchi, pierogi, knedlicki...whatever you call them. The best have this potatoe body and a slight of gumminess. It takes a while before they melt on your tongue - so as you see there is something in between wise woman and potatoe dumpling.

In Poland potatoe dumplings in various versions have made a career more impressive than vodka in fact. Be sure I will present them here in opulence.

For the start - simple dumplings of boiled mashed potatoes with a hint of nutmeg. Preferably served with a yoghurt dip. The one below is with green olives, tomatoes, cucumbers, feta and basil. Not very Polish indeed.