I hope everyone’s having a great weekend and, to all celebrating, a Happy Mother’s Day! Today I get to share a recipe courtesy of my husband, who pulled together these wonderfully decadent Eggs Benedict dishes. Though it was a team effort, he took charge of the most challenging part, the poached eggs! I whipped up my shortcut version of hollandaise with an immersion blender — I’m telling you, it’s foolproof and so fast. We toasted some dark whole-grain bread that was the perfect base for these layers of oozing sauce and egg and a sprinkling of fresh chervil. It’s our simplified version of the classic. Enjoy! Continue reading
A rustic breakfast dish or side, this strata can feed a crowd with minimal effort on the cook’s part. And it’s tasty! I’ve used some light spring flavors of leeks, creamy ricotta, fresh thyme & chives, but you could use whatever veggie-cheese-herb combination appeals to you. Leftover Easter ham would be a great addition too! Happy Easter to all celebrating, and happy Fiesta Friday — come check out this week’s party!
My husband and I got married during rhubarb season, and as our anniversary approaches, rhubarb seems a fitting ingredient to celebrate our marriage. The rhubarb plant is a hardy one, but requires space, patience, and a cooler climate to flourish. Awaiting harvest season can seem like an eternity, but given time to grow roots throughout the colder months and extend its reach under ample direct sunshine, the harvest is often abundant. The subtle sweetness and tenderness of rhubarb reveals itself over time and effort, through slow cooking to melt the fibrous stalks into a soft and delectable richness. Combine rhubarb with extra doses of sweetness, and it achieves an even more delightful balance of flavor. Get a little bubbly with it, and it sparkles. Here’s a toast to our marriage, which gets sweeter and richer and more tender over time. Continue reading
True story: After living in Bosnia for a few months, I once complained to friends how unappetizing I found the eggs there. “They smell like hay, and what’s up with that dark orange yolk?” I said. One friend, who had grown up on a farm in the U.S., started laughing. And then she laughed some more. And when she was able to breathe again, she gave me a little pat on the arm and said, “Laura. They have that smell because the hens are grass-fed. That’s a good thing. And the orange yolk means they’re fresh.”
Ah-ha! Well, I certainly felt dumb. I guess I had grown used to sanitized and odorless industrial eggs with pale yellow yolks. Sure enough, after a couple years in Bosnia, I came to love those farm-fresh eggs, as well as all the other abundant fresh produce there. My lesson: Sometimes it’s good to question your instincts.
It’s a little early for asparagus here in Germany, though buds are blossoming and fair-weather birds have returned, but we’re getting imported white asparagus from Greece with purple hues at their tips. Once steamed, the fat white spears turn buttery soft and sweet and go so nicely with a heaping of rich and lemony hollandaise sauce (made super easy with an immersion blender), a sprinkling of herbs (I used chervil here, but chives work well too) and coils of sliced ham. A plateful of flavors to usher in a glorious asparagus season!
My mother-in-law’s Swedish Pancakes are legendary. This dish has long been in her arsenal of recipes, since before she even met her part-Swedish husband and became a mom to my beloved part-Swedish hubby. These are like crêpes, but moister and spongier than any other I’ve had. You can top them or fill them with whatever you’d like: fresh berries, powdered sugar, honey, lemon juice, cinnamon, jam, nutella, bananas, whipped cream, chocolate, syrup, or a combination of these. Continue reading