Orange and almonds cake (my way

image

I could make a fortune with this recipe, but will share it with you instead. To enjoy when oranges are in season. Will only recommend you not to cheat about the organic orange. If you don’t  have one – one is all you will need –  then peel your orange before starting. It will lose in taste, but you will not end up eating baked pesticides and  waxes. My oranges and almonds are from the organic farm Agricortese, just in case you will learn something about the Ribera region.

  • For an average cake you will need:
  • one organic orange, cut into pieces eventually de-seeded
  • 50 gr of unpeeled almonds (organic as well)
  • 3 eggs
  • 250 gr plain flour or a mix of your choice
  • 250 gr of sugar
  • baking powder
  • small glass of sunflower or mild olive oil
  • small glass of milk or substitute

a mixer with blades – this is mandatory

Pre heat your oven at 180 C. Put the orange and the almonds in your mixer and blitz untill you have a paste. Add the eggs, the dry ingredients and then – with blades on medium speed – enough oil and milk to reach a cake consistency. Not too runny, but better runny than stiff. (a Michelin’s star recipe, I know, I know)

image

The batter looks like this when put into your baking tin. As for this, do as you please… grease and flour the tin, line it with parchment, with reusable foil  – like me – or simply go for a non sticky tin. I have none.

Put into your oven and lower the temperature to 160 C and….   baaake (as in GBBO) for almost an hour. At the end you will have a soft, delicious cake, full of flavour but without fuss. No need for icing, powder sugar od layers of jam. Just this.

 

image

Hišice and tutorials (hišica, hee/shi/tza, small house)

First day of fine weather after two long weeks. I’ve been struck at home more or less from the day I quitted my regular job, but I just enojed the feeling of having nothing to do – not really, but no one was putting me under pressure and this was so great I had to breathe in the whole thing. But both the dog and me need a good walk at least once a day, so off we went.


She is Pika (Peeka), means dot in Slovenian. When we took her from the shelter she had Daphne written on her adoption papers, but it was such a posh name for a tough girl like her, that we changed it. No one ever called her Daphne anyway, from the day she was left in the middle of a street, almost two years ago. 

On the right you can see a rare example of local shepherd’s hut. Once, well after WWI , they where a common sight in our area, now they are almost gone forever, just a pile of lime stones. This one was rebuilt by students from the University in Ljubljana. They came here with their tutors, including a visiting professor from the UK, and worked on the project during one summer. The result is a true pastirska hišica – literraly shepherd’s hut – in all its splendor. This one was quite big from the start, the others you can stil spot around are smaller. Big enough for the shepherd – the one and the only – to sit iside this structure made of stones and nothing else. In case of rain, storms or wind, he crowled inside and waited.


During the walk I tried to spot signs of the incoming Spring, but all I can find was a spot of red


The green you see is ivy so it does not count. If we talk of colour then here you have an example of the most shabby photographer of all times…. me! I was taking a pic of my lazy increasings, but only after the photo session (haha)I noticed that my nails reflected strange shades of orange, due to my habit of peeling oranges the primitive way. Poor me….

Take a pic of your roasting tin

Taking photographs of your meals is a great task. Do you care about this? Answer 1: not much. Answer 2: I am veg. Answer 3: your desk is untidy. But the main  subject is not the pork. It is the knife. Because with a really good knife you can do magic. True. Tomorrow I’ll have a story to tell, about a designer who turned backer and will make my  day with her croissants.

my lively kitchen

As some people say, we are what we eat. Truth. But we are what we are, so we cook in a hurry, cook from scrap, try to make kids (and adults) eat healthy food, and more times than we are ready to admit, we cook with an eye on what the feast will cost us. Be honest, we all do that! In my entire life I’ve met just one person who was sincerely fond of his big money cooking style. And guess what? He is not around any more to tell the lesson. Was it because of the truffles in and out his pasta dishes or the booze, I don’t know. All I can tell is that not a single one of his recipes has a place in my cooking  copybook, even if they were tasty and cherished among common friends.

Sad stories apart, here is one of my easy-peasy-when-you-are-busy dishes…. Pesto and mozzarella frittata.


In a bowl you mix the eggs (how many is up to you ), a TBS od flour, a splash of milk and a pinch of salt. Mix quickly and add  some pesto. Leftovers from previous day pasta dish will be great. In fact the frittata is a day after special, as an entire pesto jar is too much for one single use. With a splash of olive oil heating in your pan, you are ready. Put the egg mix into the pan and let it stay for a couple of minutes, then gently turn and stir it with a wooden spoon. At this step you rip the mozzarella in tiny bits and cover with it the almost ready frittata – a greenish scrambled mix at this point. Cook to taste. Add a pinch of paprika or peperoncino flakes and enjoy with a season salad. 

new everything

And so it happened. Decisions were made, the first and more important being me quitting my job. Not a proper heroic act, they actually gave me money to leave, but not an easy one either. I was an adieu to my first and for more than 25 years only love: journalism. no more shifts, no more reporting, no more stand ups, no more european conferences, no more desk job. Must add no more stress, of course, not related to the job per se, may be, but still. To make a very long story short – because no one could really bother about my office related fights, the stupidity of some new weave but well schooled reporters, the lack of fact checking, the stories people read and belive to – I said goodbye and closed the heavy glass door of my office behind me. No regrets whatsoever.

I am a little bit unemployed right now, but I have plans. The worse scenario being me acting as a Hausfrau for the next 10 years (then I’ll officially become a retired journalist), but I will do my best to avoid this option. I am creative. Alas not with dusters and mops.

So here we are. At the blog stage. You can find me at the Neolithic stage of it. First because my laptop was found by the volunteers digging the remains at Brodgar up on the Orkney. This could be the only reasonable answer to my question: why are you so slow?

This is also the reason why this first post will be so  basic. I have so much to learn…. how to make those flashing advertising pop ups drop dead, for instance… but I have time. For the first time since I was 17, I really have plenty of time.

Good.

No knitting, reading or cooking talk for this first post. I am not even sure there will be a place for you to comment. Not because I don’t want you to, just because I have to find how to operate. Any support will be welcome, any grammar/lexical correction as well. English is not my mother tongue, I am not J.K.Rowling/R.Galbraith, so help me, please.

image