I still have to meet the first person who doesn’t like moussaka. I mean, what’s not to like? Potatoes, aubergines, lamb mince, tomatoes and a beautiful blend of spices. ( and depending on which variation you opt for, it is often topped with a rich white sauce.)
But this is me we’re talking about. I don’t do classics. I shake things up and create new twists on otherwise familiar dishes. So I decided to swap the heavy white sauce for pungent feta cheese to lift the dish to a whole other level.
To those who may not know it yet: I try to eat vegetarian as much as I can, because it is better for your health and – more importantly – the environment. So OUT with the lamb mince and IN with seitan! Seitan is the most brilliant thing on the planet since sliced bread. It has a “meaty” texture and loads of flavour! (in contrast to quorn, which can often be a bit bland)
So please forget the idea that vegetarian food is bland, unoriginal and boring! If you could all just come over, I would prove you otherwise!
Or you could just make this dish. 😉 Just follow the instructions of your old traditional moussaka recipe (I’m sure you have it lying around in your kitchen somewhere 😉 ) but instead of the mince use a spicy tomato sauce with grilled peppers, seitan, sautéed onion and garlic. Don’t forget to add lots of spices like chili, smoked paprika powder, cinnamon, cumin and oregano. Your sauce will have never tasted this good, I promise!
What do you prefer? Boring meat or funky vegetarian?
Okay, Chilli con carne (or in this case: chilli sin carne 😉 ) isn’t the prettiest looking dish to photograph. Especially because I’m such a bad photographer! But once you are able to look past all that visual horror, you will soon discover that this dish will delight all your other senses…
Imagine THE SMELL! That wonderful blend of chili, cinnamon, cumin and smoked paprika penetrating the walls as if it were a very special air freshener!
Imagine THE TASTE! It is hearty, aromatic and spicy! What more could you wish for?
Basically, this Chili Sin Carne is my idea of COMFORT FOOD heaven. You don’t even need to use cutlery! Yes, you’ve read that correctly. Why not use your hands instead of a fork?
Oh, come on! I know you want to!
When you need a little “Pick me up” because of the cold weather outside, what better dessert to eat than a scrumptious tiramisu?
However, at the risk of sounding pretentious and making every Italian on this planet angry, I find the traditional Italian tiramisu too… straightforward and dull. I want something more exiting, new and imaginative! So instead of using lady fingers, I used the world famous Belgian ginger biscuits. (if you have never heard of them, shame on you and start googling right now! Belgium is much more than just chocolate and beer, you know.) These biscuits soaked in coffee, add a rich flavour with hints of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger and create an instant autumn vibe! I also added some marinated pear to the mascarpone mixture to turn this dessert into a showstopper, ready to be devoured in front of the fireplace.
I love baking. I dare say that I get almost as much pleasure out of baking a cake as I do eating it.
This morning I decided to bake my favorite autumn treat: a spiced carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. It is moist, sweet and incredibly easy to make. Whatever the occasion, a slice of delicious carrot cake will always add that special touch of home-made satisfaction.
Opt for a traditional carrot cake if your grandma is coming to lunch, but don’t be afraid to experiment with exiting new flavour combinations from time to time. Why not add cardamom seeds, candied ginger or a splash of single malt Whisky? Or maybe scatter over some marshmallows? No matter which variation you decide to try, I am confident you will make it again and again and again and …