Party inspiration- filled conchiglioni

DSC_75781The holidays have passed so quickly. It feels like we just got up from the table, said goodbyes to our guests, and there is already next celebration ahead. Champagne, fancy dresses, masks and balls, or celebrations in smaller circles of friends, or with a cat- the night is yours. (Unless you’re sick, then you’re still celebrating with your bugs, but the flair is gone).

Whichever type of your party it doesn’t mean you can’t prepare for it. If you are still looking for some inspirations and are not sure what to serve, try this filled conchiglioni! This recipe is very easy, quick, and I think most important, it lets you enjoy the party, since you can prepare everything before the arrival of your guests! The only thing then you have to do is place them in the oven.

You need:

500g of conchiglioni (the big pasta shells)

500g minced beef

2 onions

5 tomatoes

200g Feta cheese

2 garlic clove

fresh basil to garnish

Preheat the oven to 180º. Cook the conchiglioni according to directions on the packaging. In the meantime wash the tomatoes and cut in small cubes. Peel the onion, cut in small cubes and mix half with the tomatoes. Cut the feta in small cubes, or crumble, and mix half with the tomatoes.

Heat a tbsp of oil in a pan, add the minced meat and simmer. Add the rest of the onion and garlic, peeled and chopped. Add dried thyme,salt and pepper to taste. Cook until ready, then add the feta cheese. Put aside.

One by one fill the ready conchiglioni with the tomaoes or minced meat. Place the shells on a baking tray and put in the oven for 10min. Garnish with basil leaves.DSC_75942_wsDSC_7579ws

Merry Christmas!

DSC_6808Merry Christmas!

May this holiday season sparkle and shine and may your wishes and dreams come true! Let’s enjoy the time spent with those who are most important to us and may we all be better, not only for Christmas!

Mushroom soup

DSC_7515Merry Christmas! Since yesterday in my kitchen reigns good known chaos again. The smells intersperse with each other, the sweet smell of the chocolate and gingerbreads and onions, mulled wine, fresh parsley and other spices. The sounds of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker coming from the living room round the christmassy atmosphere in my house. It’s time to wrap the presents, but before I disappear under the wraping papers and ribbons, I wanted to post this recipe yet. It’s a little variation of a mushroom soup I usually make, but tastes very good! It can easily serve as one of the dishes on your christmas table. It definitely will on mine.DSC_7506To serve four you need:

handful of dry mushrooms

3 tbsp vegetable oil

small onion

1 tbsp butter

1 carrot

1 small parsley

2 potatoes

3 grains of allspice

2 bay leaves

1tbsp of parsley

salt and pepper

cream

Put the mushroom in a bowl, pour the water and let it soak for few hours. Drain off the mushrooms, but save the water in which they were soaking, move to a pan. Heat it up, let the water evaporate, add 1 tbsp of oil and chopped onion and cook together for few minutes. Add the butter and salt and continue cooking until the mushrooms are soft. Move from the stove.

In another pot heat up 2 tbsp of oil, add the cut vegetables. Fry for few minutes, then pour 1L of boiling water. Bring to boil, add potatoes, cut in small cubes, and the spices and cook over medium heat until the vegetables are soft. In the middle of the cook time pour the water in which the mushroom soaked along with the mushrooms. Salt and pepper to taste. Pour onto a plate and add 1tbsp of cream.DSC_7514If you expect more than four guests, simply double the ingredients.DSC_7509

Busy day? An idea for a quick dinner with a plum!

DSC_7107Some days can be pretty busy. Everyday life, appointments without end. And the feeling that the day lasts much longer than usual. The sun going down at 4pm isn’t really helping either. For those days I suggest the next recipe. It is very quick and easy to make. It can be also a life saver in case you have unexpected quests! Or you just want to try something else.

Serves 4. Total time: 30min

600g smoked pork chops (Kasseler)

500g plums (fresh or in glass)

1 sprig of rosemary

1 onion

1 tbsp butter

2 chilis

1-2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

DSC_7096Preheat the oven to 200ºC (circulating air 180ºC). Cut the pork chops in 4 slices, place in a heat resistant dish with the rosemary and cook in the oven for 30min.

Melt the butter in a pot, chop the onion and chili and add to the butter. Cook until the onion is soft.

Wash the plums, remove the core and cut in halves. Add to the onion and cook together until a liquid starts to form. If it doesn’t, you can add a little bit of water. Taste with the vinegar, salt and pepper. Serve with potatoes.

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Something for the christmas menu? Try this meatloaf!

DSC_6963So the holidays are radpidly approaching. It’s slowly time to start ordering gifts or doing the gift shopping personally, to be sure to get everything on time. And it’s also time to start thinking about the menu! For those spending christmas with parents and the whole family it’s maybe not that stressful. You know, mothers know best and can handle family diners like a pro, with tried and safe recipes everyone knows and likes.

The challenge begins when you are the one having everyone over. Since christmas is once a year everyone want it to be perfect, from decorations down to the menu. If you’re not to serving goose this holidays, I have something you will love! And not only for christmas!

DSC_6970It serves 4-6.  Prepration time: ca 30min   Bake time: 30min.

500g mixed mushrooms

500g minced meat (mixed or  beef)

1 egg

1tsp mustard

40g sundried tomatoes

1 onion

1 tsp cayenne pepper

500g potatoes

3 garlic cloves

2 tbsp vegetable fat

1 day old roll or 2 tbsp breadcrumbs

1 tsp herbs de Provence

250g low fat cream

bunch of fresh parsley

Preheat the oven to 200ºC. Clean the mushrooms and cut into 1,5cm big pieces. Cut the dried tomatoes into stripes and then cut in halve. Peel the garlic and the onion and cut into fine cubes.

Heat the vegetable fat in a small pot and add the cut onion and garlic and let it cook. Add the mushrooms and the tomatoes, salt it and cook for 10 min. You can add some water. Put aside when ready. Peel the potatoes and cut into cubes.

Soak the roll in cold water until soft, then squeeze and mix in a bowl with minced meat, mustard, egg, herbs de Provence and pepper. Put the dough on a tin foil and form a 20x25cm rectangle.

Spread out the mushrooms along one egde of the dough and with the help of the tin foil form it to a roll. Place it in a casserole dish. Place the potatoe cubes along the meat roll.

Add the cream to the mushroom fond and bring to boil. Pour the liquid over the potatoes and place in the oven. Bake for 30-40min. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.

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Veggie casserole!

DSC_6760I’m probably late again. Can’t really say why, but the first Advent caught me without the tree or any christmas decorations whatsoever. I have a feeling I’m the only one not talking about christmas yet. To my defence I can say I’ve been to the christmas market. Actually 4, but since in Munich every city district has its own christmas market, you will stumble upon a few, whether you want it or not. But more about later!

My next recipe isn’t very christmassy either, but it’s good for any occasion and any season. It’s also a very practical idea when you don’t really know what to do with that old paprika :)

DSC_6779To serve 4 you need:

2 paprikas (red or red and yellow)

500g broccoli

1 onion

400g grated cheese

200g champignions

chive and parsley to garnish

Preheat the oven to 180º. Wash the broccoli, cut in florets and boil for few minutes.

Cut the onion, paprika and champignions. Oil a heat resistant dish and fill with the broccoli, so the florets are tight placed at the bottom. Sprinkle with cheese. Place the paprika on top and sprinkle the cheese again. Place the onion on top, cover with cheese, then distribute the champignions. Cover with cheese, put the lid on, and bake for 30min. Sprinkle with fresh herbs before serving.

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