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Recipe: Yoghurt Citrus Cake

This very damp, cheesecake-like cake is actually a Turkish dish. I was expecting something completely different! So I was a bit disappointed, but with some greek yoghurt to the side and the citrus syrup on top, it was actually pretty good! I made this cake for Mother’s day.

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Ingredients

  • Butter to grease in the spring-form pan.
  • 6 big eggs, the egg yolk and egg white separated.
  • 150 grams of white sugar.
  • 75 grams self rising flour
  • 600 grams strained Greek yoghurt (curd?)
  • Zest and juice from 1 lemon.
  • a bit of seasalt.

The citrus syrup

  • 125 grams of white sugar.
  • 125 ml of water
  • zest and juice of 1 orange
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon

And then you do…

  1. Preheat the oven on 160 Celsius degrees.
  2. butter the spring-form pan (23-25 cm) and put baking paper on the bottom.
  1. Beat the egg yolk (with an electric hand mixer) until it’s light of color and foamy.
  2. Sieve the flour over the beaten egg yolk and spoon it carefully through the dough.
  3. Add the strained yoghurt, lemon juice and lemon zest to it and spoon it through the dough.
  4. In another (CLEAN AND NOT GREASY) bowl, beat the egg white with a bit of salt. Until it’s white and solid.
  5. Mix this carefully with a metal spoon through the dough.
  1. Pour the dough in the cake form and make it flat.
  2. Bake the cake for +/- 50-60 minutes, until the top is gold-brown of color and the cake has come up.
  3. Check with a metal knife to see if the cake is done. Put it into the cake, and back out. If the knife comes out clean, the cake is done.
  4. Let the cake cool down (note: the cake will flatten).

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The syrup

  • Add all the ingredients in the pan and let it cook.
  • Lower the fire and let it simmer for around 7-15 minutes until a third has boiled down.
  • Cool down. Once it cools down, the syrup will thicken.
  • When the cake has completely cooled down, pour the syrup evenly on top of the cake, after you took it out of the spring-form pan.
  • Serve the cake with Greek yoghurt.

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Recipe: Asparagus in Soy/Sake Sauce

My boyfriend and I found a recipe from a sauce that went so good together with asparagus, that this is now my favorite way to cook asparagus. It’s easy, and all you need are some Asian products you probably never heard of before. And if you’re a vegetarian, then you’ll love this too.

Served next to the duck from last week.

Served next to the duck from last week.

Ingredients

  • Green asparagus.
  • 80 ml sake
  • 80 ml mirin (what’s mirin?)
  • 80 ml shoyu (japanese soy sauce)
  • 1 1/2 tbs sugar

And Then..?

  1. Peel the ‘skin’ off the asparagus.
  2. cut them in pieces.
  3. Add the mirin, sake, shoyu, sugar and 80 ml water in a pan and stir till the sugar has melted.
  4. Add the asparagus and cook it until they’re done. Not too soft, not too hard.
  5. Take them out and serve.

Feature image by rcakewalk.blogspot.nl.

Enjoy!

Photo by Pterantula.

Facing My Fears and Overcoming Them

That’s going to be the theme for this week! And I’ll tell you why…

I have a lot of fears. Well, to me it’s a lot, but maybe the amount of fears I have is pretty normal. A few of them are: I’m afraid of spiders, needles and sharks.

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Photo by Pterantula.

They don’t really rule my life. But when I have to get blood tests done, needles might be a problem. And spiders? I sometimes find them in the toilet or on the ceiling on the bathroom when I’m showering.

Sharks? I don’t even know. It’s the reason I never go swimming…

The needle-problem already started last Friday when I had to go to the dentist because I had a cavity, and he had to fix that. Because he had to drill pretty deep, I needed a local anaesthesia. The assistant mentioned that they had an ointment that makes your skin (or gums in this case) feel numb so you don’t feel the needle. BEST. IDEA. EVER. I didn’t feel a thing!

Today at the hospital I had to get some blood tests done. I was waiting before it was my turn. Sweaty, shaky hands, and a tad neurotic. When it was my turn, I told the nurse that I was terrified of needles, and he reacted really friendly. That he completely understood it. He even said; ‘that’s good’. Tho, I’m not sure what he meant by that. Maybe he’s a bit sadistic?

Photo by Melissa Wiese.

Photo by Melissa Wiese.

Anyway, he promised me that he would get the needle into my vein at one go, would keep talking to me, and that I wouldn’t feel a thing, beside a little sting from the needle. I hoped for the best and actually went all: “Fuck it, let’s go for it”. If I can do it at the dentist, I can do it here. But this involved blood, and blood makes me feel weak in the knees and dizzy. So I decided not to watch.

It went really well. I did feel a bit of a sting, but it was over before I knew it. I was huffing and puffing, trying to focus on something else when he said: “I’m already done…”.

The only thing that I really, really hate is when they tie this band tightly around your arm so your veins almost pop out of your arm. Ugh.

One fear down, two more to go!

Photo by ALL CHROME.

Photo by ALL CHROME.

Upcoming Saturday there is going to be a little animal-event in my town. It’s going to be really small, and not really long. But you can see specific animals, buy things, watch things, and much more. Another thing that I understood is going to be there are spiders, and snakes. I’m not afraid of snaked, but I hope there are going to be tarantulas (they are fluffy), and that I can hold one. Hopefully that’s going to help me overcome my fear of snakes.

I can do this!

Featured image by Hugo A. Quintero G.

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I have a weakness for duck. I love it, I once had it in a restaurant, where the duck was so damn good, I’ve been looking for that same taste ever since. While I barely eat/cook duck at home, I usually eat it at my boyfriend his parents’ place. But this time, my boyfriend and I decided to give duck another try in our (very small) kitchen.

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Ingredients

  • 1 (young) duck around (2,25kg)
  • 1 tsp seasalt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp five-spice powder
  • 1 tbs soysauce
  • 2 tbs liquid honey
  • 2 tbs Chinese black vinegar (or lemonjuice)

For the plumsauce

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tspĀ  ginger zest (optional)
  • 3 ripe plums
  • 1/2 tsp five-spice powder
  • 1 cinnamon stick (small)
  • 2 tbs Chinese rice vinegar
  • 4 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 – 2 tbs water

What’s Next?

  1. Preheat the oven on 200 Celsius degrees.
  2. Remove as much fast around the duck as you can. Don’t remove the skin.
  3. slice cuts in the duck (example: in the skin. Unless you only have one side of skin)
  4. In a small bowl, mix the salt, five-spice powder and the pepper together.
  5. Rub that over the duck, in the slices, everywhere.
  6. Put in the oven with the chest up (or the no-skin-part up) for 30 minutes in a roasting pan/tray.
    Note: Depending on the size of the duck it should be 30 minutes. Is the duck around 2,25 kg, then it should be 30 kg. Does it weight less, then it shouldn’t go that long into the oven, or else it will become very dry. Dry duck isn’t tasty.
  1. In meanwhile mix the soy sauce, honey and black Chinese vinegar/lemon juice in a bowl.
  2. When the duck is done in the oven, you carefully pour some of this mixture over the duck.
  3. Pour a coup of water in the roasting pan/tray.
  4. Lower the oven temperature to 170 Celsius degrees.
  5. Bake the duck another 75 minutes to 90 minutes. Depending on the size until it’s soft and barely cooked.
  6. While baking, pour some of the soy sauce/honey mix onto the duck every half hour.

Plumsauce

  1. Make the plumsauce while the duck is in the oven.
  2. Heat up a bit of oil in a (frying)pan
  3. Add ginger (optional) and bake it for 1-2 minutes until they’ve become light brown.
  4. Undo the plums from their skin and cut them in pieces.
  5. Add the plum, five-spice powder, sugar, chinese rice vinegar and cinnamon in the pan.
  6. Scoop it around and let it simmer for 15 minutes, until the mixture is jam-like.
  7. When you’re done, you can either serve it warm, or on room-temperature.

When the duck is done…

  1. Cover the cooked duck up in tin foil and let it rest for 15 minutes on a warm place.
  2. Cut it in pieces and serve with rice, plumsauce and vegetables.
We served it with asparagus.

We served it with asparagus.

Resource
Gordon Ramsey

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Review: Heavy Rain PS3

Heavy Rain, created by Quantic Dream. Another movie-kind-of-game that was released before Beyond: Two Souls. I was told the game was even better than Beyond, and most reviews are very high about this game. Do I agree…? I’m not so sure…

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Heavy Rain – The Origami Killer

Heavy Rain is not a regular game. Just like the other games from Quantic Dreams, it’s like you’re watching movie, but you’re being a part of it. You have to guide the characters down the stories by making choices, doing specific things that is important in the story, and depending on how you do things, the story may go in different ways, but it will always lead to the same end: finding the killer. But it also offers different endings for all of the characters in the game (you’re still following me?). Quantic Dream gives you the idea that you’re leading the story.

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The game is set in a city in America. In that city (where it rains every day) is a serial killer going on, named the Origami Killer. He leaves origami figures by his victims, and it’s up to you to find out who the killer is and to save his most recent victim. In Heavy Rain you play four characters, and every now and then you switch from character to character who will lead you deeper into the story and hopefully bring you to the Origami Killer.

All the four characters are different from each other. Ethan Mars is depressing, while Madison Paige is friendly and empathic. Norman Jayden is an addict and Scot Shelby is asthmatic.

A Boring Movie?

Sometimes Heavy Rain feels like a boring movie. Where Beyond: Two Souls kept getting your attention, your attention might drift off to something more interesting with Heavy Rain. Yet, you continue because you’re curious who the killer is — or you don’t even bother any more. Then there are specific scenes that make you think: Why is this scene in the game?

And it may feel like some things has no use to the story-development at all. Beside that, the beginning of the game was slow. Very slow. Because you’re playing four characters, it’s hard to get a connection with those. Every time I had to play Shelby or Madison I was all “Argh! Not again”, simply because I didn’t like those characters, and I had the idea that with no Madison in the game, the game would have been the same, or maybe even better.

Likes

  • Strong story.
  • A few good characters.
  • Good graphics
  • Keeps your curious who the killer is.
  • A surprising end.
  • Realistic
  • The makes you think before you make a choice.

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Dislikes

  • Slow beginning.
  • Some annoying characters.
  • Too much characters. Hard to bond.
  • Sometimes you wish you had a ‘fast forward’ button.
  • Replay value is low.

Worth the Money?

I paid 8 bucks for it, but new the game would cost 15 to 20 euros (Holland). Is 20 euro’s really worth it? No, I don’t think so. It’s a longer game, and there is just as much action in it, as there are boring moments, it just doesn’t feel worth it. I’m sorry Quantic Dream, but I feel like you’ve could have done a much better job (and you did, with Beyond: Two Souls).

The Pelargonium grandiflorum.

It’s Growing!

A few weeks ago I posted that I had planted some seeds. I don’t have very green fingers, and it’s a miracle if anything with leafs survives around here in this here. I have cats that like to nibble on plants and I almost always forget to give them water. So how did it end up with those seeds?

Alive and Growing

Almost all of the seeds are growing! Almost…

I had planted pansy’s, mint, chives, parsley, sweat peas and dahlias. The Mint isn’t doing anything, or it takes very long to pop up from under the soil. The Dahlias aren’t even trying. The Pansy’s, basil, parsley and sweat peas are doing great! Which is a miracle — really. I’ve placed the sweat peas outside, and covered them up the first week to keep it damp inside.

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The sweat peas are doing good.

The rest in the green house started growing after a week. The pansy’s popped out first (and through out the rest of the green house too. Not just where I planted them). Followed by parsley and chives.

And last weekend I bought flowers to give the balcony some colour. I got Pelargonium Grandiflorum (Franse geraniums) and African Violets (kaaps viooltjes). Because of the bad weather I had to wait a couple of days before I could put them in another flowerpot instead of the ugly plastic ones they come with. I hope they survive! (note: the violas are actually purple, and not blue. The camera has trouble with that color)

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Shake That Polaroid Picture

Maybe some of you already know, maybe some of you don’t — I got a new Polaroid camera. I’ve always wanted one, despite the fact that films for Polaroids are super expensive. But I suppose that’s the price of awesomeness.

The woman I bought it from only wanted to sell it to me if I was going to use it, and it wasn’t going to end up covered in dust. I promise you, that’s not going to happen.

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Polaroid 1000 Land Camera

This Polaroid is a Polaroid 1000 Land Camera — the Instagram camera! The camera is known for using SX-70 integral film. For this one you need to buy specific films. I bought the wrong films, which do fit in the camera, but the photo never developed. It’s a common problem with this camera, that’s why it’s best to use the films from the brand Impossible with color-protection. Impossible makes films especially for Polaroid cameras. Sadly, you pay for that as well; 8 films for 20 euro’s or more.

I still need to practice taking pictures. My hands are a bit too shaky, and of course you move the camera a little bit when you press in the red button to take a picture (not really a handy place). While at the same time I don’t want to waste all the 8 films at the same time. But that also is a good thing. You’ll think before making a photos. Do you really want to waste that one precious film on that flower or not?

I’m very happy with it! I haven’t used it for a while because I want to wait till it’s summer. When the lightning is better outside, when the sun is shining and the flowers are blooming. In meanwhile, I can save up money for more films!

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