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Blog posts of '2012' 'July'

CROQUE MADAME
 
Croque Madame
INGREDIENTS (serves 4):
  • 8 pieces of stale bread;
  • 8 thin prosciutto slices;
  • 4 thin slices of hard cheese (as Gouda, Edam, Emmenthal or Jarlsburg) ;
  • 6 eggs ;
  • milk (1 cup) ;
  • mustard (1-2 tsp);
  • butter ;
STEPS:  
  1. Beat together two eggs and milk, add salt and pepper (to taste);
  2. Spread the butter onto 4 pieces of bread, spread the musturd on top of the butter;
  3. Put 2 prosciutto slices on top of the mustard and 1 slice of cheese on top of prosciutto;
  4. Cover each "Croque"  with the piece of bread;
  5. Melt the butter in a frying pan;
  6. Now dip each "Croque" in the mixture of eggs and milk, let it soak a lttle bit;
  7. Fry in a pan on both sides;
  8. Preheat another frying pan, fry the remaining 4 eggs. Try not to over cook it - the whites do not have to be brown and the yolks have to be golden and runny.
  9. Put each "Croque" on the plate and cover with fried egg.
STUFFED EGGPLANTS AND BELL PEPPERS
 
Stuffed eggplants and bell peppers
INGREDIENTS (serves 6):
  • Ground beef (1 pound);
  • 6 Eggplants;
  • 6 red bell peppers;
  • 1 onion;
  • 4 garlic cloves;
  • 4 medium tomatoes;
  • Fresh basil;
  • Olive oil;
  • Grated parmesan (4 tbsp);
STEPS:  
  1. Cut off (lengthwise) one fourth of each eggplant and put aside. With a sharp knife and a spoon remove the flesh from the bigger parts of the eggplants;
  2. Cut bell peppers in half lengthwise. Take out the seeds and white membrane;
  3. Finely cut the onions, garlic, eggplant flesh, 6 halves of peppers, smaller eggplant parts (that were cut off earlier) and tomatoes;
  4. Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat;
  5. Add the mixture of vegetables and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally until soft (but not brown);
  6. Add the ground beef and cook for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chopped basil;
  7. Take the remaining 6 halves of bell peppers and eggplants, brush with olive oil and fill with stuffing. Sprinkle with grated parmesan;
  8. Put the stuffed eggplants and the bell peppers on a baking dish and put into the preheated (360°F) oven for 20 minutes.

MEATBALLS WITH SUGAR SNAP PEAS
 
Meat Balls with Sugar Snap Peas
INGREDIENTS (serves 6):
  • 1 pound of lean ground beef ;
  • 1 onion, grated;
  • 1 cup of bread crumbs ;
  • 1 egg;
  • fresh parsley, chopped (3 tbsp);
  • 1 pound of sugar snap peas;
  • 10 garlic cloves;
  • 4 shallots, chopped;
  • 5 large bellpeppers,cored, seeded and chopped ;
  • 1 can of ground tomatoes(28 oz.);
  • 3 thin strips freshly pared orange rind.
STEPS:  
  1. To prepare the sauce heat the oil in large pan over medium heat. Add garlic, shallots, bell peppers and cook until soft (not brown). Add ground tomatoes and orange rind, season and let simmer over low heat for 40 minutes. Stir occasionally;
  2. Meanwhile mix together ground beaf, egg, bread crumbs, parsley, salt and pepper to taste. Shape walnut sized balls ;
  3. Heat a little bit of olive oil on the skillet, cook the meatballs in batches, in a single layer, for about 5 minutes until brown, adding more oil if necessary ;
  4. Remove the meatballs from the skillet and put them in the saucepan with sauce; Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes;
  5. Trim the tips of the sugar snap peas on both ends, remove the strings if they bother you;
  6. Add the sugar snap peas to the saucepan with meatballs and simmer for another 7-10 minutes.
NECTARINE PIE
This pie is one of the most fragrant and incredibly delicious desserts! Given the fact that it is very easy to prepare and the list of ingredients is very simple, we are confident that this Nectarine's Pie will be your favorite treat for many years. 
Nectarine Pie
INGREDIENTS (serves for 8):
  •  Nectarines 2.2 pounds (1 kg) ;
  •  Puff pastry 1 pound (450 g);
  •  2 oranges;
  •  Brown sugar (1 cup);
  •  Butter (1 tbsp);
  •  Pink pepper (1 tbsp;)
  •  Orange (or vanilla) liqueur (4 tbsp);
STEPS:  
  1. Cut the nectarines into thin slices, put them in a saucepan, add the juice of two oranges and the brown sugar mixed with the zest of  two oranges. Leave the mixture aside for a couple of hours;
  2.  Meanwhile, roll out the puff pastry and place it in a baking dish. Brush with butter and pierce with a fork;
  3.  Place the saucepan with slices of nectarines on a low heat and wait until the sugar is completely dissolved. Then, remove the   nectarines from the syrup with the skimmer and spread them on the puff pastry;
  4.  Preheat the oven to 360°F(180°C) and put the baking dish with the puff pastry and the nectarines in the oven for 20 minutes;
  5.  Return the saucepan with the remaining syrup on the heat, add the liqueur and pink pepper and cook for 10 minutes;
  6.  Remove the baking dish with the pie from the oven, spoon the syrup over the pie and return back into the oven. Bake for another 20 - 25 minutes or until nice and golden.
GAZPACHO
On a hot summer day, it is so refreshing to treat yourself with a bowl of cool and spicy soup... 
Gaspacho
INGREDIENTS (serves for 8):
  •  1 can of ground tomatoes (28 oz.);
  •  2 english cucumbers;
  •  3 red bell peppers;
  •  4 cloves of garlic;
  •  Small bunch of fresh parsley;
  •  Small bunch of fresh basil;
  •  5 anchovy fillets;
  •  2 big loaves of stale rye bread;
  •  Red wine vinegar (2 tbsp);
  •  Worcestershire sauce (1 tsp);
  •  Extra virgin olive oil (1/2 cup);
  •  Tabasco sauce;
  •  A pinch of celery seeds;
  •  White pepper (1 tsp);
  •  Pink pepper (1 tsp);
  •  2 cloves;
  •  2 (750 ml) bottles of unflavored mineral water (i.e. Perrier);
STEPS:  
  1. Peel the cucumbers, cut your bell peppers in half lengthwise. Take out the seeds and white membrane. Cut the cucumbers and the bell peppers into tiny pieces. Leave a small portion of the mixture for decoration and put the rest into a deep saucepan;
  2. Put the cloves and peppercorns into a dry heated pan and warm up for 2-3 minutes. Then put them into a mortar, add a pinch of  salt and mash;
  3. Remove the crusts from the bread and sprinkle it with red wine vinegar, leave it for 5 minutes. Cut the anchovies with parsley and garlic. Add the bread, anchovies, ground tomatoes, parsley, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco (to taste), celery seeds and spice mixture to the vegetables in the saucepan. Add a bit of mineral water and set aside for 10 minutes;
  4. Blend the mixture in a blender for 3 to 5 minutes while slowly pouring in a thin, steady stream of olive oil. Add the rest of the mineral water and mix with a spoon;
  5. Put the soup in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours;
  6. Pour into serving bowls, garnish with the remaining mixture of vegetables and basil leaves;
CHILLED SOUP WITH CRABS
 
CrabSoup
INGREDIENTS (serves for 4):
  • 2 pounds of plain yogurt;
  • 4 large legs and claws of cooked crab or 400 gr of canned crab meat;
  • 4 potatoes;
  • 6 eggs;
  • bunch of scallions;
  • 6 medium cucumbers;
  • bunch of radishes;
  • salt and pepper;
STEPS:  
  1. Hard-boil eggs, cool them under cold running water and peel;
  2. Peel the potatoes, cut into cubes, put them into saucepan, pour in 3 cups of boiling water and cook until tender;
  3. Remove the potatoes from heat and leave it to cool in the cooking water;
  4. Finely chop the white parst of scallions, remove the yolks from the hard boiled eggs and cut them into pieces, add white parts of scallions and yolks to the potatoes and mush everything together with a masher ;
  5. Finely cut the peeled cucumbers, radishes, egg whites and green parts of scallions. Add everything to the saucepan;
  6. If you are using the cooked crab than remove the meat from the legs and claws and break it into pieces using your fingers. Add to the saucepan;
  7. Add yougurt. Stir your soup with a spoon, cover and put in the fridge for 2-3 hours