Brains for cooking – Cooking for your brains

Sneaky Salads: My split chickpea and parsley salad.

chickpea salad (1 of 1)

The comfort that comes with a good plate of food is like no other. Warming the heart and filling the stomach. Soft chickpeas, warming chilli, vibrant cilantro, aromatic parsley, sharp spring onions, tangy feta, and the sourness of lemons really tie this little salad together. Do yourself a favor and treat yourself to something nice today.

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My Godly Greens: Braised celeriac and carrot matchsticks.

braised celeriac and carrots (1 of 1)

Celeriac really is no-ones favourite vegetable. A strong taste, a weird texture and a bad reputation. We rarely have it on its own – occasionally we serve it with something, mash it up, or add it to give flavor; but only rarely do we appreciate it for its own sake. But when we do, it is worth it. Given a bit of time it will melt right on your tongue, leaving behind an intense note of umami, without a single ounce of meat to it. It is the combination of rice-wine and soy-sauce, the sweetness of the carrot and the intensity of the celeriac, that makes this dish special. And it is the warmth of chilli that will bring it home.

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Busy Bites: My grilled tofu with grilled greens.

grilled tofu (1 of 1) 

Smoky firm tofu, spicy spring onion, and savoury mushrooms. My grilled tofu with grilled greens might not sound like much, but they are the perfect light snack. Low in carbs, high in flavour. And the best thing? They are done in a couple of minutes.

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Brilliant Baking: My dark chocolate and cherry cake.colate

chocolate and cherry cake (1 of 1)

Dark and rich, creamy and moist. My chocolate and cherry cake has it all. Mixed up in about 10 minutes, done in under an hour – this cake is the perfect lazy Sunday treat. All you need to do is to say yes. Yes to chocolate. Yes to butter. Yes to cherries. And, “yes, baking is pretty easy”. Because it is. What’s not as easy is taking pictures of brown and white things. 

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Breaking bread: My Salmon and Dill Bagel.

salmon and dill bagel

Smoky salmon. A rich and golden mustard and honey dressing, a thick comforting spread, and a silky and runny poached egg. Breakfast allows indulgence like few other times of the day. And it only takes little to transform your mediocre morning meal into a chance to treat yourself. My Salmon and Dill Bagel is done in a couple of minutes and, despite its look, require almost no skill at all. So make the choice, today, to treat yourself. 

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Super sneaky salads: My mango and cucumber salad.

Mango cucumber salad 1

Light and crips. Sweet and savoury at the same time. My sliced mango and cucumber salad is the right pick for a quick dish. Done in a little over five minutes, bursting with flavor, and amazingly yumm – this salad will win over your heart. It stores well, if you add the dressing right before digging in. There is little more to say than this: you are a fool, if you don’t give this a try.

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Cheeky Chicken: My Stuffed Chicken Breasts in a Courgette Coat.

cheeky chicken - stuffed chicken breasts2

Tender and juicy chicken. Smoky bacon. Dill. And crème fraîche. Served on a bed of arromatic farro with slowly roasted shallots. My stuffed chicken breasts in a courgette coat might not look like a spring dish, with all it’s autum colours, but it is so light and fresh that it would not fit any other season better. The key is in slowly roasting the chicken breast – allowing it to just loose the last hint of faint pink. This 20 minute dish might look rather un-assuming, but it is packed full with flavor.

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What lies ahead: An incredibly delayed kick-start.

welcome back

Wow. 413 days went by since I last posted on here. In fact, 413 days went by since I last went on WordPress.

I’m going to take a break“, I said. “It’ll only be a couple of weeks“, I said. That was in January 2014.

Evidently I overestimated my discipline. It’s awkward to realise how easily and gradually everyday life demands cover up the traces of plans and intentions in your mind. Before long I had forgotten about this space. Literally. It took me quite a while to figure out how to log in again. Interestingly enough, the internet did not forget. I just checked, in 2014 6184 people visited this blog. 6184. I’m quite overwhelmed by that number. It means that, by today, 14971 of you visited this space since it started in late 2012. I’m quite grateful for that.

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Short Hiatus – Cookingbrains will be back soon.

I have been posting on Cookingbrains every weekend since August 2012. (Almost) every sunday, no break, no exception. In total this has resulted in 74 (including this 75) posts. These 75 posts have reached 14800 views in this time. Most of the people coming here, seemingly obsessed with Naan (This post has received 2700 and some views, meaning that it has been read more than 5 times as often as the second most popular post: My deconstructed tomato lasagna. I’m incredibly grateful for all of you coming back here every week. Even for all of you who come much less frequently ;-).
I can’t believe that it has been 512 days since I started blogging on here. 512 days well spent, I think. But also 512 exhausting days. I feel like a short break was in order. I’ll take a tiny leave from all of this – a few couple of weeks, I assume. But I will be back soon, latest at the start of March, with all kinds of new tricks and fun things. Until then, take care and share some food with your loved ones.

Fancy Fish: My grilled sole with confit tomatoes and a basil sauce.

sole 1 IMG_6741
Flavours as crisp and clear as the air that fills these days. Intense colours, foreshadowing the nearing spring. And a lightness that I have been craving for all throughout winter. My grilled sole with confit tomatoes, served with a basil sauce, is a light dish. Grilling the tender and succulent fish, cooking the soft and silky confit tomatoes and grinding up the aromatic basil sauce won’t take you longer than 15 minutes. So if you suddenly feel like having a posh meal – then treat yourself to this most simple dish.
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