Daring Bakers February Challenge: Quick Breads - Lemon Loaf with blueberries

The Daring Bakers’ February 2012 host was – Lis! Lis stepped in last minute and challenged us to create a quick bread we could call our own. She supplied us with a base recipe and shared some recipes she loves from various websites and encouraged us to build upon them and create new flavor profiles.

I was glad it was a quick and easy challenge this time. Because I am preparing for my birthday brunch there was not much time left for additional elaborate baking. At first I was a little bit confused - quick breads without yeast - sounded not tasty at all. But then I discovered the leaf recipes and was glad, especilly about the Meyer Lemon loaf one. I would love to use them, but they are not availiable in Germany, what a pity! I love lemon recipes and decided to add some fresh fruits to moisten it instead of brushing it with syrup (the recipes are often very sweet, so I already reduce the sugar content). The combination with blueberries is great as tested before. To get a similar taste to Meyer lemons, I used a mixture of lemon and orange zests and orange and lemon juice. The cake is my birthday cake for work, so I hope my colleagues will like it as I do.

Daring Cooks February Challenge - Patties & fish burgers my style

The Daring Cooks’ February 2012 challenge was hosted by Audax & Lis and they chose to present Patties for their ease of construction, ingredients and deliciousness!We were given several recipes, and learned the different types of binders and cooking methods to produce our own tasty patties!

Technically patties are flatten discs of ingredients held together by (added) binders (usually eggs, flour or breadcrumbs) usually coated in breadcrumbs (or flour) then fried (and sometime baked). Burgers, rissoles, croquettes, fritters, and rösti are types of patties as well.

This challenge offered me the opportunity to share something I really love to eat - fish burger. When I first read the topic, I thoght about usual burgers (or 'Buletten') like we use to call them here in my region (funnily, there are several words for 'burger' in different regions of Germany). But then something popped up into my mind and I remembered something - the instant though of "Oh, you could make FISH burgers again ..."

So if you are not interested in love stories, skip this part. Now I am going to tell you the love story of me and the fish burger (on Valentine's day - funny, isn't it?). It all started with my au pair time in Norway which is known for its fish. About a month after I arived there was a 'traditional food' fair at the market sqare in Trondheim. At one booth a cook was making (high quality) fish burgers. There was a long queue, but I got to taste a bit because the mother from my family knew him. I fell in love immediately. So every time I travel to Norway for vacation or feel the longing to travel there, I try to recreate this memory. I discovered you can buy ready-made burger patties at the supermarket which are called 'fiskekaker' (fish cakes) or 'fiskekarbonader'. Some contain salmon, some white fish (mainly codfish) or extra ingredients like bacon or leek. Here you can find an overview. Of course I can't get them here, so I had to make them myself. In one of my cooking books I bought in Norway (I speak Norwegian, so no problem) I found a recipe I could adapt and use for fish burgers. The book is by Andreas Viestad and also availiable in English as "Kitchen of light". If you are interested in Scandinavian cooking, you can have a peek here and for a traditional 'fiskekaker' recipe here.

This is my adaption - a version with salmon which I absolutely love and a new one with codfish, dried tomatoes and leek. And because I'm into bread baking right know, I'll add a recipe for lemon-flavoured bread rolls which suit the fish really well.