a mother and daughter lifestyle blog

the journal

fresh pasta with mushrooms and fennel
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we are introducing a new series of mini posts on the blog. not much talking, no fuss, just a great recipe. so without further ado we'll just jump right into it.

to feed 4-5 you'll need:

  • 500g fresh pasta (buy from the deli or find our recipe here) - we made very thick fettuccine
  • 1 bulb fennel (with greens)
  • 1 white onion
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 350g button mushrooms
  • 350g oyster mushrooms
  • 250ml heavy cream
  • 150ml milk
  • 1 shot of pastis or pernod
  • 2 handfuls of baby spinach
  • salt & pepper
  • chives and/or dill as topping
  • parmigiano (optional)

in a large pot, bring salted water to a boil. the fresh pasta doesn't take longer than 3 minutes, so add in the pasta last minute when everything else is ready. if necessary, wash the spinach; cut the fennel into thin wedges and keep the greens for later. peel the onion and chop it finely. clean the mushrooms and - depending on their size - cut them into halves or quarters. they shouldn't be too small so they don't lose too much liquid and go soggy. now heat the butter in a pan and add the onion and fennel once bubbly. once the fennel is golden, add the mushrooms and salt and pepper to taste - cook for about 3 minutes only. at this point, pop the pasta into the ocean water, cook for 3 minutes and drain. turn off the hob and put the pasta back into the pot, add cream, milk, pastis and spinach and mix. when the pasta starts absorbing the cream (should only take 1-2 minutes) carefully fold in the mushrooms, give it a quick stir and serve immediately with fennel greens and chives. we like to top it with a sprinkling of parmigiano but this is totally optional.

k & l

how to: homemade pasta
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while we were in tuscany last year, we had the chance to make pasta with la viallas cook, luigina, the queen of pasta. so you can believe us when we say this recipe is good, like reeeaaally good and pretty much foolproof. in these pictures we made lasagna and cut the dough into large rectangles, but the recipe works for any type of pasta. if you're making some kind of linguine or spaghetti we recommend running the dough through a pasta machine. any other kind can easily be cut by hand and there are lots of tutorials online to show you how. making fresh pasta is 100% worth it as the taste and texture just does not compare to anything store bought.

for about 500g you'll need:

500g of flour (type 550/all-purpose)
4 eggs
100g durum wheat semolina
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

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step 1:

pile up the flour on your worktop and hollow out the middle. add in the eggs, semolina, olive oil and a pinch of salt. using a fork, mix the ingredients and gradually start taking in the flour from the sides.

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step 2:

then proceed to kneed with your hands until you are left with an even, compact dough. as you can see from the left picture, the dough might be a little sticky in the beginning but will eventually become nice and smooth and shouldn't stick to your fingers. once you are left with a nice big ball of dough, cover with a clean hand towel and put aside to rest for 15 minutes.

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step 3:

lightly flour your worktop and use a large rolling pin to roll the dough as thin as possible. it can help to flour the rolling pin as well to stop the dough from sticking to it.

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step 4:

cut the dough into the pasta shape of your choice using a knife or a pizza cutter. to make lasagna sheets we did large rectangles, but you can do almost anything from farfalle to fettuccine.

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step 5:

now that you have the pasta of your choice, it's time to cook it. bring salted water to a boil, add in the pasta and cook for about 3 minutes. then drain and serve with a delicious sauce worthy of your homemade pasta! we covered our lasagna sheets with a hand towel (in order to soak up the excess water) before layering them with the rest of the ingredients and popping them in the oven...

...to become what is quite certainly the best lasagna we've ever had.

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last snow days at the farm house
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while we're waiting for spring to finally come around, full bloom and all, we might as well make the most of the last snowy days in austria. long walks with our dog leni, slow mornings and good home cooked meals is what we call a weekend well spent and there is little an escape to the countryside can't fix. as our farm is still in the process of renovation we've enjoyed spending time in the area and staying at our friends country home, starting the days with homemade granola and fresh almond milk.

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visiting our neighbours who have llamas and alpacas and all sorts of furry friends.

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the best cauliflower broccoli bake - we'll share the recipe with you sooner than you know!

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epic coconut blueberry cake

there really is nothing quite as cosy and comforting as baking up a storm in the kitchen when it's all cold and snowy outside (except maybe eating said baked goods). one of our absolute go-to recipes is this cake that's bursting with coconut flavour and little juicy gems of blueberries and raspberries. it's so gooey and the sugar crust gives it that little extra that makes all the difference.

  • 130g coconut oil
  • 175g sugar
  • 175g flour
  • 150g good quality desiccated coconut
  • 150g oat cream
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 100g blueberries
  • 100g raspberries
  • extra desiccated coconut and sugar for the crust
  1. pre-heat the oven to 175 degrees. grease a round baking tin and line with baking paper
  2. add coconut oil, sugar, flour, desiccated coconut, oat cream and baking powder into a large bowl and whisk together on high
  3. now gently fold in the berries
  4. spread the batter evenly into the baking tin and bake for 15 minutes. then pull out of the oven and sprinkle with 2 tbsp each of desiccated coconut and sugar. put back into the oven and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until golden. don't let it get to dark!
last-minute edible christmas gifts
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SEEDED CRISP BREAD (makes 2 trays)

this is such a crowd pleaser and a huge hit with everyone we know. it tastes amazing on its own, but feel free to enjoy it with your favourite spread, lots of avo or a good cheese.

  • 120g plain flour
  • 120g oats
  • 100g sunflower seeds
  • 50g sesame seeds
  • 50g linseeds
  • 50g hemp seeds
  • 25g chia seeds
  • 25g black sesame
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 500ml water
  1. preheat oven to 175C and line two baking trays with parchment paper
  2. mix all ingredients until you are left with a thick dough. spread evenly onto the trays and bake for 15 minutes. take out of the oven, cut into equal rectangles and bake for another 30-45 minutes, until golden brown
  3. if you want to wrap them, make sure to let them cool completely beforehand

alternatively you can layer all the dry ingredients in a large jar to give away as a baking mix. just make sure to add instructions and the measurements for the wet ingredients. it looks especially pretty if you don't mix the ingredients, but layer them separately like we did.

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INFUSED OIL

this is probably too easy a recipe to label it as such, but we just had to include it in this post. because it really is a  l i f e  s a v e r  - made in absolutely no time, you'll never have to come empty-handed again, no matter how last-minute the invite. you can never go wrong with an oil as it's something that everyone needs. just add a special twist and voilà: a fancy gift that no one will ever know only took you two minutes to put together.

ROSEMARY & CHILI

  • a very good quality olive oil
  • a few sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 1 tsp chili flakes

GARLIC & THYME

  • a very good quality olive oil
  • a few sprigs of fresh thyme
  • a garlic clove, peeled and chopped
  1. place the ingredients in a bottle or jar and cover entirely with olive oil. (it's very important that the herbs are completely covered so that they don't mould)
  2. add a bow and some dried herbs for an a+ on presentation.
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SPREADS

spreads are such an amazing gift and we've realized that every family has their own special recipe - we've tried so many delicious ones over the years and we're always grateful when we receive another. we're happy to share some of our family recipes with you here!

LINGONBERRY & ONION CHTUNEY

  • 350g lingonberries
  • 200g red onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 100g sugar
  • 6 tbsp vodka
  • 4 tbsp condimento bianco (vinegar)
  1. sautée the onion and sugar with no oil in a pan. now add the lingonberries and stir until you're left with a thick mixture
  2. deglaze with vodka and condimento and allow to reduce on low heat
  3. fill into jars and store in a cool place

CHRISTMAS JAM

  • 500g preserving sugar (2:1)
  • 600g frozen red berries and cherries
  • 300ml red wine
  • 5 star anise
  • 10 cloves
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon
  • zest of half an orange
  • a shot of rum
  1. heat the red wine, orange zest and spices - but don't bring to a boil. remove from heat and allow to infuse for an hour
  2. in a pot, mix sugar and berries. add the wine and bring to a boil, stirring consistently. allow to boil for 3 minutes and then test for a set
  3. mix in the rum, pour into mason jars and seal immediately

AMLOU (the moroccan version of almond butter)

  • 300g almonds
  • 300g orange blossom honey
  • 150-300ml argan oil (depending on your desired consistency)
  1. toast the almonds in a pan on medium heat.
  2. place into a food processor and blend together with the argan oil. now add the honey and blend until you're left with a smooth texture.
  3. add extra oil if necessary - the almonds will always thicken up a little, so if it seems to runny, not to worry!

CORIANDER ALMOND PESTO

  • 75g almonds
  • 60g fresh coriander
  • 60g fresh parsley
  • 125ml best olive oil
  • 20ml toasted sesame oil
  • 20g toasted sesame seeds
  • a thumb-sized knob of ginger, grated
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp chili flakes (optional)
  1. pop all the ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend away until you have your desired consistency. we love it when there are a few almond pieces left here and there but feel free to blend as long as you like
  2. fill into a mason jar, top with a little olive oil and store in the fridge
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