Fridays with Beatrice: Oeufs en cocotte with leeks, spinach and smoked salmon

This week, Lena and me 'pimped' the usual breakfast egg. As ususal, it was a recipe I totally missed while skipping through the pages. I love eggs (in all kinds) too, especially when the yolk is still runny ... At the moment I shouldn't eggs like that, but there are some things I can't resist. 
The egg is cooked in a waterbath  surrounded with flavours from leek, smoked salmon and spinach, a great combination for my taste anyway.

I didn't have a small and deep glass jar for layering all the ingredients like proposed, so I spread them thinnly into a Crème brûlée mould which worked fine too. I have to admit that I omitted the leek (just used some spring onions) just because right now I have to avoid food that causes flatulence.
Nevertheless the dish was a success - I barely got to taste a bite because everthing dissappeared into someones else's belly. We are having brunch on sunday with some friends, and I really think about making some oeufs into a cocotte of bread 'baskets' baked into a muffin tin ...

Roundup: If you want to spoil yourself for breakfast, this is a must-do. Otherwise a fast and healthy dish in between. My new favourite recipe I would say.

Daring Cooks October Challenge: Brazilian Feijoada

Rachel Dana was our October 2012 Daring Cooks' Challenge hostess! Rachel brought Brazil into our lives by challenging us to make Feijoada and Farofa along with some other yummy side dishes traditionally served with Feijoada, which is a delicious black bean and pork stew.

"Hi! I’m Rachel Dana, a non-blogging member. I’m an American who has been living and cooking in Belo Horizonte, Brazil for the past 6 years. For this month’s challenge I wanted to share a traditional Brazilian meal that I believe will be possible to make anywhere in the world, so I chose Feijoada. And not only a feijoada stew, a feijoada meal, so get ready to get into the collard greens, farofa, vinagrete, and some other fun things as well. If the plate isn’t overflowing with food, it would just be inappropriate.
Feijoada is a famous Brazilian black bean stew filled with meat, mostly pork parts. A really traditional feijoada will have pig ears, feet, nose…this originated with slaves and what was left for them to cook with."

It was a little difficult for me this month - first problem was getting the ingredients, second problem was that I do not like beans.. Maybe it's just a side effect of my pregnancy, but the imagination of a stew with lots of pork meat in it was not really attractive. But I was curious to try a Brazilian dish so I changed the meat to chicken (mainly). I could only get hold of black beans in cans, so I was able to make a really quick feijoada. Instead of the collard greens for the feijoada meal I made spinach; and I also skipped making the Brazilian whit rice. The original recipe (with the pork feijoada, white rice and collard greens) can be found here.

Fridays with Beatrice - Chocolate and plum almond cake

This time Lena chose this fabulous cake. I love plums, especially in combination with cinnamon, so I was eager to bake it. I wasn't sure about the chocolate flavour together with the plums, especially because the recipe suggests chocolate with 60% cocoa but it turned out to be fine. 
This time I sticked 100% percent to the recipe for a very simple reason - I had all ingredients availiable. The cake is baked with almond and amaranth flour instead of wheat flour. The texture feels therefore softer and lighter (for my taste). The plums are cooked with butter, sugar and cinnamon before added to the cake and to be honest - I could have eaten them right away from the pan and just a few would have made it into the cake. Bea suggests you can use other fruits for example nectarines too, but trust me, the one with plums will blow you away. Unfortunately the cake was mostly gone before I could eat it because someone else in this household though it was delicious ...

Roundup: Light and soft cake with a delicious flavour combination. A recipe which has to be added to the basic repertoire of baking recipes.

Daring Bakers September Challenge - Empanada (with baked apples)

Patri of the blog, Asi Son Los Cosas, was our September 2012 Daring Bakers’ hostess and she decided to tempt us with one of her family’s favorite recipes for Empanadas! We were given two dough recipes to choose from and encouraged to fill our Empanadas as creatively as we wished!

I can't believe it's already october - and that I'm posting a challenge so late ... But after my two-week 'summer' vacation in september (and all the preparing that comes with a hikig trip), days with lots of work and another lucky condition I'm it I just feel tired. My energy level has been very low during the last months and it costs me a lot of effort to stand in my kitchen for a longer time and prepare food. 
Normally I cook dinner at home, but lately I eat at work because of my overwhelming hunger attacks at noon. Also I have to stick to a bunch of food restrictions (nothing smoked or raw, soft cheese, alcohol) so I feel a little bit limited in my cooking too. I guess some of you know what I'm talking about right now. 
So I feel pity I'll maybe miss my favourite season of the year. The story of Patri about her grandmother's kitchen in Portugal inspired me (I could literally smell the flavours coming from that kitchen), and I rembered my favourite smell of fall - warm/baked apples. Usually I would make a cake with apples in fall but as we were allowed to use a sweet filling for our empanada too, I chose to make a baked apple filling. Baked apples are something mostly eaten around christmas time, but I have a really bad craving for them right now (made even some for a BBQ yesterday). The filling is my own creation I usually use for the baked apples, but which also makes a nice layer of an empanada.