Author Archives: kirschplunder

RECIPE: Thai-flavoured Sweet Potato Chowder (reblog)

IMG_4679I made soup yesterday. Aaaaaaaaand it actually turned out delicious. Like surprisingly tasty! It’s definitely my new favourite soup, which doesn’t come as a surprise, because it’s built on the idea of my previous favourite soup combined with this one, which is a variation of Nigella Lawson’s Chowder with Asian Flavours. Anyway the idea is to add Thai/Asian flavours to my already dearly loved sweet potato soup. Try it, honestly it’s probably my favourite recipe on here so far! The recipe is for 3-4 people.

♠ Preheat the oven to 190° C
♠ Peel one large (or two regular) sweet potato(s) and cut it in little cubes (like 1cm x 1cm roughly)
♠ Marinate them in a little olive oilcayenne pepper, and salt (don’t go crazy with the spices though, there’ll be plenty of other flavours in the soup!)
♠ Spread the cubes evenly on a baking tray and bake until they’re cooked throughout (slightly crispy on the outside and wonderfully soft inside, around 20-30 minutes, but depends entirely on your oven). Whilst this is happening, get on with the base of your soup:
♠ Bring 1.25l of vegetable stock to the boil in a big saucepan
♠ Add 1 leek (cut into thin slices) and cook for 10 minutes
♠ Add 1 can of coconut milk, 1/2 chopped red chili and bring to the boil again, then turn off the heat and mix in a generous handful of chopped up fresh coriander
♠ Once the sweet potato cubes are done, mix them into the soup and blend it all together
♠ Add 1 small tin of sweetcorn, a bunch of spring onions (chopped into thin slices) and the juice of a lime (taste as you go, anything between half a lime and a whole lime should do the job depending on how citrus-y you like it) and serve with some nice Baguette.

Enjoy :) If you make it, please let me know how you like it!

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Borough Market… Finally!

2014-02-22_0001 Well hello! I appreciate that it’s been a little quiet around here, but hopefully that’ll change soon, because I’m trying to come up with more of a concept, nothing rigid, but more of a format to keep this little blog of mine running. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to leave them in the comment section :) In the mean time, I thought I’d tell you about my visit to Borough Market. So I finally went and boy was it worth it, it’s literally something like my paradise and it’s made me probably too happy to be there. The only thing I regretted was going there hungry, I instantly felt this very urgent need to eat and I wish I’d taken more time to decide, to bother queuing for the proper good stuff, instead I just got a Bubble Cheese Bap, which was ok, but nothing compared to what was out there. Anyway it got me ready to actually go exploring, because I finally managed to think a little clearer again, so I could take some photos and buy some proper bread (which I miss oh so much in England usually), veg, cheese and proper good quality olive oil. Whilst I fortunately unfortunately can’t share the food I bought with you, here’s at least a couple of photos.


How tasty does this look? It’s Raclette cheese, and no it’s not just boring slices of it in a pan, it’s half a cheese that’s under heat and they scrape off the melted goodness from the top. What a brilliant idea and yes I pretty much need this in my belly. Yum-my.


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RECIPE: Stuffed Antipasti Courgette Swirls in a Fruity Tomato Sauce with Marinated Feta (reblog)

IMG_4920As promised on Friday, I’m sharing the recipes to make the food I had with you this week! These absolutely beautiful and delicious courgette swirls are up first. I’m not going to lie to you, this dish is pretty labour intensive. It’s delicious, sure, but I for one probably shouldn’t have spent about 2 hours in the kitchen  to make this (with way too much coursework being due in way too soon and all) AND absolutely worth it!

IMG_4864The recipe itself is very simple, it’s just you know, a lot of work. I got a little fed up with chargrilling courgette slices after about 5 minutes (I’m a little impatient), so I thought I’d just do it with raw slices, but then I tried a stuffed chargrilled courgette swirl and oh my word was it tasty! It’s still delicious, when they’re not chargrilled, so if you’re a bit lazy like me, or if time simply doesn’t allow, just mix and match, chargrill some of your slices and leave others raw (they’ll get cooked in the oven anyway). Or leave all them raw to start with, it tastes good either way, it just won’t have that smoky flavour as much.

RECIPE: Stuffed Antipasti Courgette Swirls in a Fruity Tomato Sauce with Marinated Feta

IMG_4870♧ Marinate 1 package of feta by crumbling it up with a fork and mixing it with good quality olive oil1 crushed clove of garlicpepperdried thyme and dried oregano. Just do it quantities by feeling, since this depends purely on your taste. It tastes best, if you let this sit in your fridge overnight, but it’ll still be tasty if you do it just before and let the magic happen in the fridge, whilst you get on with the rest of the dish. You probably won’t need all of it to for this dish, but it’s really handy to have in the fridge (there’ll be a couple more recipes over the next couple of days giving you ideas how you can use it!)

♧ Cut off the end bits and use a vegetable peeler to cut 3 courgettes into slices (quite thick considering it’s done with a vegetable peeler, but thinner than you could with a knife.) I don’t use the very first one, because it’s just courgette skin, but then I go until it doesn’t really work anymore and repeat this procedure on each side. Keep the middle bit.

♧ In a bowl, mix your courgette slices with about a tablespoon of olive oilsalt, and pepper.

♧ Heat a griddle pan, and griddle all your courgette slices. If this gets too tedious for you, see above!

♧ Whilst this is happening (told you it’d take a while), get cracking with your filling. Mix about 1/2 pack of cream cheese with 2 heaped tablespoons of sweet corn1 crushed clove of garlicdried oregano, salt, pepper, and some curry powder. Taste to see if you like it and adjust accordingly.

♧ Then (the courgettes are probably still going, if not, just set them aside to cool), make a really simple tomato sauce: Fry 1 chopped up red onion in a little olive oil until softened. Whilst this is happening, chop up the middle bits of your courgettes, then add them to the pan. Once they’ve gotten a little colour, add 1 tin of chopped tomatoes. Play around with the flavour, i.e. maybe add a little balsamic vinegar, maybe some thyme, salt, pepper, curry powder, whatever you fancy! 

♧ Preheat your oven to 200° C

♧ Once all your components are ready, get layering! In a fairly small casserole start by covering the base with about half the tomato sauce. Then (if you have kids this is where it’s fun to get them involved) smear a little cream cheese on each courgette slice and roll it up! I find this easiest if I just put a little on half the slice, fold it over and then roll, but it’s up to your preference really.

♧ Cover with the remainder of the tomato sauce, followed by some of the marinated feta.

♧ Put the casserole and 1 half baked ciabatta in the oven until the feta cheese has reached desired consistency and the bread has a lovely golden brown colour.


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The whole Jamie Oliver thing

I feel like the post has to start with a little disclaimer. No I don’t understand what’s it’s like to live below the poverty line, and I’m grateful for that, I absolutely don’t know how I’d live on as little as £10 a week for two. What I do understand is that there are a lot of people, way too many, who are really really struggling, like struggling more than anybody should. I appreciate that, I feel sincerely sorry for those that do struggle and I’m more than grateful that I’ve never had to. 

But, to get to my point, I’m sure so is Jamie Oliver. To be honest, I’m so sure (or at least really want to believe) that he’s not targeting the people that are really struggling and having to turn over each penny with his messages. As I understand it, he’s targeting people where wrong choices (wrong in terms of wrong if you want to eat as healthily as you possibly can on your particular budget) are made on a daily basis. Families, where they get a lot of takeaways, which I understand can be a tempting offer with burgers being as cheap as £1 at McDonalds. Or families where a lot of cigarettes are smoked and a lot of alcohol is drunk. Obviously in those cases a lot of changes can be made, because you can make your own (veggie)burger for 9p according to Jack from A Girl called Jack. I deeply believe that he never wanted to offend people like Jack, who try their hardest to feed their family with whatever they can afford, I believe that with his message, that yes can be interpreted this way, he’s trying to get to people who do the things he described (eat chips in front of a huge TV). I’ve waited to write this blogpost, because I really didn’t want to come across judgemental, since I’m mainly writing this post, because all the hate that’s going on online all the time, upsets me.

From reading more and more about all of this, I gathered that a lot of people who are poor and have big TVs, that they got them for free, because someone gave it away or on freecycle or something similar. And I do think that people still have the right to choose a TV (because even if the TV is free, a TV license is pretty expensive, which is why during Uni, D and I chose to just watch stuff on iPlayer etc, since we definitely needed Internet, meaning that Internet was an expense already anyway), everyone is allowed to choose their priorities, but if you decide that nutritious food is your main priority, I tend to agree with Mr Oliver, that some people (unfortunately!) might have to make some sacrifices, which may or may not include not having a TV and not ordering so many takeaways. But let me stress again, I don’t think so many people below the poverty line do live like this, I think there’s some people who are living like this, who are claiming to struggle (which is down to not sorting their priorities out), which reflects badly on all those who try their hardest every single day. 

Of course, JO will earn lots of money from this, and of course he’s so far away from the poverty line, but he’s also worked his way up there. He works hard for his success, and yes a lot of people who work  hard haven’t been rewarded to the same extent (if at all), which is sad, but it’s also life.
I don’t think that should be ground enough for all the hating that’s once more going on. I’m so sick and tired of it. He’s written a book followed many requests for affordable recipes, and yes he’ll earn lots of money from it, but as far as I understand it, it really is supposed to help people eat healthier food for not very much money. He said that the average price per portion in the book is £1.40, which I think is pretty good. Of course it’s not good enough for everyone, but for a lot of people I think this could be pretty useful! 

I want to make sure everyone who reads this understands that I think everyone can and should have their own opinions, and I understand that people who are struggling might find what he said offensive, because the image portrayed in his message and that a lot of society has, is not applicable to them, because they work incredibly hard to make things work, to not send their kids to bed hungry and they still get put in the same category as those who spend money on the wrong (see above) things. 

I hope my point comes across, I really do, because I kind of felt like I needed to write this and I really don’t want to come across like I agree with that everyone who’s poor is like this (but then I don’t think that’s what he meant, which in a way is my whole point). 
How people spend money for food is something I think about a lot, and I still think that people who earn a healthy amount of money, should spend it on good ingredients for their food , first of all, because I think food should be one of people’s main priorities, it’s what fuels your body (but of course you’re welcome to disagree), but also to keep medium sized companies alive, that struggle to produce food for as little as retailers demand. I appreciate that the super cheap basics food in supermarkets is important for people who are struggling, I just think anyone who can afford to, would be better off spending money on good quality food. I’ve written about that here and here

This post got a lot longer than I planned. If you read it all, thank you for taking the time, I’d love to hear your opinions on this (and I’m respectful of all opinions, as long as they’re not really hateful).  

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On Plastic Bags

Aren't our surroundings beautiful? Let's all make small changes to reduce how much we litter it!

Aren’t our surroundings beautiful? Let’s all make small changes to reduce how much we litter it!

(From my other blog, but because it’s relevant everywhere, also reposted here :) )

Let’s talk about plastic bags. I know it’s a thrilling topic and who doesn’t enjoy a little chat about them? Even if you don’t, I feel like we need this little chat. I’m not initiating this chat to have a go at anyone, I’m writing about this, because I feel that if I can just get a couple more people to think about how many (unnecessary) plastic bags they use and get them to take their own bag more often, it’d be a good thing.
Let me start by telling you that I’m aware, there’s many many things out there that you can and should do, and I’m only starting to try to learn more about this myself, I’m trying to educate myself and to implement at least some small changes. I’m not saying this is the single most important thing to think about, I’m just saying this is something that won’t be intrusive to your daily life (not to say that we shouldn’t make intrusive changes too), but that can actually make somewhat of a change. To be honest, I think it’s frightening to consider the impact we’re having on this planet, but baby steps people, baby steps.

Plastic bags are made from petroleum, you know that stuff we’re all so concerned about because it’s scarce? Yeah that. In Germany, every single year 5,000,000,000 plastic bags are used, which if they were stacked on top each other is apparently 30 times as high as the Mount Everest. In England it’s over 6 billion, each of which is used for an average of only 20 minutes and the majority of which ends up in a landfill, where it supposedly takes over 1000 years to rot (click). And I’m sure you’ve all seen the images of how they end up in the sea and on beaches where they are dangerous for animals (click)

Anyway, I don’t want to go on, I’m pretty sure everyone knows that plastic is pretty bad and I definitely don’t know it all! What I do know is that it’s pretty easy to cut back on how many you use, like SO easy:

♣ Don’t get a bag when you’re only buying one single item! This drives me absolutely mad! Why would you need a bag when it’s only one or two items? You’ll still need to carry the bag, so why not just carry that one greeting card/bottle of water you bought? And if there’s anyone working at checkouts? I don’t know if the supermarkets make you offer them to customers, but why not just stop offering if it looks like the customer could very easily carry the items they bought? They’d ask for one if they really needed one.

♣ Take big bags from home when you’re doing a big shop (like Ikea bags, or the big Tesco ones). I see so many people who get 8-10 bags when they’re doing their weekly shop and I think it’s terrible. Not only is it obviously bad for the environment, but it’s also a lot more hassle to carry them inside.

♣ Get an eco-friendly, foldable bag to always have in your purse. My nan sent me one of those a couple of months ago, and I don’t think I got any plastic bags since. They’re so tiny they’ll fit into every handbag (don’t kid yourself, if you have space for all the stuff you’ve got in there already, you’ll have space for these, + they’re super light). They’re for the times, when you didn’t plan a big shops and want to just quickly pop into Tesco to get some bread, and end up getting milk, cheese and some delicious cinnamon swirls as well. With these, you’ll have your bag with you.

♣ If you have a compost, that’s great. Did you know that there’s compostable bin bags as well? Maybe use those :)

That’s it, as far as what I can think of to reduce your usage of them. If you do these things, you’ll use so many less, if not no more plastic bags, and I think that’s a nice little contribution you can make to not litter our planet, without being too intrusive in your everyday life.

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Things To Try Thursday – 15/08/13


I can’t believe it’s Thursday already, it’s amazing how quickly time passes by sometimes, isn’t it. I’ve been experimenting a lot with vegetable spaghetti lately, they’re so tasty, so I think I’ll have a recipe for my favourite on here soon! Have you come across any recipes that you just have to try?


♔ Majorly in love with everything coconut – Coconut Raspberry Waffles with Coconut Whipped Cream

♔ Oh hi there! Got to love anything with the word magic in its name – Black Magic Cookie Bars


♔ This lady just puts together the most delicious looking bowls of food – Mango Avocado and Black Bean Salad

♔ These gnocchis look absolutely divine! I’d imagine they’d be super tasty with some Arrabiata or Puttanesca Sauce – Courgette Ricotta Gnocchi

♔ Prime example for how amazing veggies can be as the star of the dish – Grilled Carrots over Lentils with Horseradish Yoghurt Sauce

♔ Now that we’re finally approaching autumn, how about some tasty Chestnut Spread

♔ This clearly has to be veggie heaven! It looks stunning and tasty, like the ideal food to dish up for some vegetarian food critics ;) Mushroom Stout Vegan Pot Pies with Sweet Potato Crust

Happy 4th Birthday

FotoWow, so WordPress just notified me that I started this little blog 4 years ago. I have to be honest, I can’t really believe it’s been that long. It’s changed a little over time, it started in German and with dishes that showed how cheaply and tastily you can cook for a single person. Two summers ago, I switched to English, added the occasional restaurant review, and started doing the series Things to Try Thursday, which I still really enjoy doing. My recipes have become more varied, and there’s now a bigger emphasis on healthy and seasonal food. Speaking of which, I also initiated the #VegBoxChallenge to encourage fellow bloggers and readers to eat more seasonal food and reduce their food waste, which turned out a much bigger success than I had anticipated. 

But then on the other side, I’m currently sat here watching some cookery programme on iPlayer, so obviously not that much has changed, I’m still utterly in love with food, and I’m fine with that, I think it’s something good to be passionate about.

I just wanted to say thank you to all the people who comment on and like my posts and recipes, and also to those who just read them, it means the world! Knowing that there’s a couple of you on the other side makes me exited to try out new things and to share them with you.

Thank you for sticking round :)


Something to watch

I recently came across this video and thought it was really really interesting. It’s basically about studies on how nutrition can affect our health. Obviously I can’t really say how statistically relevant they are, and I also wouldn’t make any recommendations based on this, but I just thought it was a very interesting watch! Let me know what you think.

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Things To Try Thursday – 08/08/13


♣ I’m so in love with overnight oats/bircher muesli anyway, but infusing it with rooibos just takes it to a whole new level! Apparently it adds a certain sweetness, without actually adding any sugar or the like – Rooibos Infused Bircher Muesli

♣ Oh, and apparently this is how you can make overnight oats look good! Very Cherry Overnight Oats

♣ Pretty, refreshing and healthy – Beach-Banana Smoothie Popsicles

♣ I really want to get into baking with wholemeal flour, and these little babies seem like the perfect way to get started – Banana and Oat Muffins

♣ I like that this is banana cake and not bread! My friend’s mum used to make an incredible banana cake (with chocolate chips mmmh) – Really Bananary Banana Cake

♣ I’ve been trying to perfect my own version of Granola bars, and so far whilst they were delicious, they just weren’t right. Maybe these will show me how it’s done right! Thick, Chewy Granola Bars

♣ These look so naughty, but apparently are not? Yum! Clean Caramel Delites


♣ I really love Aubergine, but only when it’s done right (if not, I absolutely hate it, and will sort the pieces out of any dish), this one looks like the aubergine has exactly the right consistency and is accompanied by a tasty sauce (thank you Mr Oliver) – Incredible Sicilian Aubergine Stew (Caponata)

♣ Baked Aubergine – I told you I love Aubergine

♣ My ideal food situation is one, where I always have some little salads and sauces going in the fridge, so other dishes are really easy to put together and can be quite simple otherwise. This Spiced Red Cabbage Slaw seems perfect for this sort of thing, and would be beautiful in every wrap, or for example in the summer rolls, I included in my Things to Try Thursday last week

♣ Simple but probably very delicious – Baked Basil Courgette

♣ I love me some sushi :) Asparagus Avocado Sushi

What have you come across that you need to try this week? Please share it with me :)

P.S. Very random side note, 5 years ago today I had my first ever driving lesson! I remember because it was the 08/08/08 and lots of people were getting married, because the number 8 is supposedly a lucky number. I can’t believe it has been 5 years.

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Things to Try Thursday -01/08/13

This is bruschetta with pea, mint and feta at some restaurant in London, simple but delicious!

This is bruschetta with pea, mint and feta at some restaurant in London, simple but delicious!

Things to Try Thursday is back! I haven’t been feeling very inspired in the kitchen lately, and I’m not even joking, I think not doing my weekly Things to Try Thursday is kind of to blame… When I don’t look at all the delicious things, other people are cooking up, I don’t have the urge to try them myself/come up with cool stuff myself. Anyway, this week for the first time in a long time, I actually looked at a couple of foodie blogposts and thought instantly that I’d have to try them, soooo here we go with yet another Things to Try Thursday :) What have you come across this week that you would love to try?


♔ When I tried frozen bananas for the first time, my mind was blown! Honestly who would have thought that these weird creatures turn into something utterly delicious and creamy when frozen? Definitely not me! But I’m happy to have given into this strange trend of freezing fruit and covering it in more delicious stuff, so this one is definitely one for the list – Chocolate Dipped Frozen Bananas

♔ Although this looks too beautiful to eat, I reckon I could eat a whole one – Orange Blossom Almond Cake


♔ Avocado Gnocchi? Seriously, how delicious do these little babies look?

♔ I was put off summer rolls a couple of years ago when they arrived at my table and I was expecting some delicious hot fried spring rolls, but since then I’ve come round the idea of healthy food a bit more, and these just look too good to not try! Like come on, melon and basil and crunchy red cabbage? Melon Basil Summer Rolls

♔ These ones don’t look too shabby either – Spicy Lentil Summer Rolls

♔ I absolutely love a good veggie burger, like love love (surprisingly the best fast food type veggie burger I ever had was at a chicken restaurant (nandos), very odd haha). This one (again paired with red cabbage, I can see a theme emerging) looks simply delightful and very (literally) mouthwatering! Chickpea Burgers with Mango Chutney

♔ Go on then! If you don’t love this for the taste it would put in your mouth, you’ve got to love it for its name: Veggie “Naanwich” with Feta Chickpea Mash

♔ How can a soup sound this delicious and look this beautiful? Roasted Cauliflower and Leek Soup with Pea Shoot and Almond Pesto

♔ I’d happily try anything caramelised onion, especially if it also involves Butternut Squash and Caramelised Onion Galette

♔ A beautiful combination of courgettes, pine nut cream and smoked shiitake mushrooms – Stuffed Zucchini Skins

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