Sunday, March 16, 2014

Bulgarian Tripe Soup - Shkembe Chorba

Shkembe Chorba
People on the Balkans like this spicy soup, which is served broadly over the Peninsula. 
As the name suggests, it has Turkish origin, but over the years it was adapted in the cuisines of the different coutries. Even though the names of the soup are local and there are some variations concerning the included ingredients (with or without milk, onion, veal knuckles etc.), the recipe is nearly the same. It is not a sophisticated dish, but it is very tasty and it has the reputation of one of the best hangover cures. 
A man healing tool probably. I can't imagine a woman, feeling giddy and suffering from head-aches, who sips tripe soup in the morning, but who knows?

But bear in mind: tripe makes the soup gelatinous and its surface tends to become solid very fast. So the soup should be eaten really hot, which makes some slurping inevitable. This fact and also the strong taste and the garlic garnish make the soup not very proper part of the menu if you inted to invite the President for dinner. Otherwise it is a very tasty soup for an evening with the beloved ones matching perfectly with a glass of ice-cold beer. 
Bulgarian Tripe Soup

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Rosemary boiled potatoes without boiling

Rosemary boiled potatoesBoiled potatoes without any boiling, can you believe that? 
At first I didn't. But Peter made me a present about a year ago - a cookbook for children with many tasty and easy recipes. The present was for me, but as he told me, we would cook together the recipes from the book. Peter is nearly 10 years old. He is one of these contemporary children, who are not afraid to help their mothers cook and who do not divide work in women and men types, which is such a huge progress for country on the Balkan Peninsula like Bulgaria. 
So, he likes to help me while I prepare the dinner - to shape the meatballs for our favorite Italian wedding soup, to hold the mixer while we beat egg whites for our Tiramisu or to create dishes like trout stuffed with yellow cheese, which is one of his signature dishes (soon to be published here). 
So, the present was for me, but I knew, we would be together with him to prepare the dishes. Two of the recipes really surprised me - boiled eggs without boiling and boiled new potatoes with garlic and rosemary also without boiling, I really liked the idea. So here is how to do it and I must assure you, these potatoes are soft and tasty on one hand and on the other - such a perfect dish to prepare with your little ones.
Rosemary growing in Tuscany
Boiled potatoes

Monday, March 03, 2014

Green Salad with Sun dried Tomatoes and Zucchini

Green salad with pine nuts and sun-dried tomatoes
O, I wish it were summer. 
Wish I were at the sea and there were sand between my toes. 
Wish I was taking one of my long walks along the sea collecting seashells and listening to the tidal waves and to the laughter of my children. 
Every year is divided into two - the cold season which last nearly five months when all my hopes circle around the forthcomming summer, and the warm season when we do our best to be as much as possible at the Mediterranean sea. 
Ordering this salad is part of the ritual for welcoming summer. Every summer we go to our favorite restaurant and we know, this salad will be still at the menu. 
And this is such a comforting thought - everithing is there just waiting for us.
And every summer we inevitably go back there because this is our favorite spot in the world. 
Green salad with sun-dried tomatoesOur sea