Scottish date & walnut loaf

I am trying out Scottish recipes for my mother’s pipe band’s Ceilidh. Yesterday I made a date & walnut loaf with this recipe from a website with (allegedly) Scottish recipes: www.rampantscotland.com.
Soak 1 cup of cut up dates and a tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda in 3/4 cup of boiling water. In a separate bowl mix 125g soft butter, 125g sugar and one egg. Then add 250g flour, vanilla essence and 1/2 cup roughly chopped walnuts.

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When I cut it open I was really worried because it looked worryingly dry. To my surprise it was lovely and moist. A real treat!

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Beetroot and Orange Salad

We were invited to a kid’s party last evening and I was asked to bring a salad with beetroots. I chose a recipe by German chef and TV star Christian Rach but adapted it beyond recognition because I was too lazy to cook the beetroot myself and bought already boiled ones. His recipes requires raw beetroot that you bake in tinfoil with star anise and cinnamon.
I started off by preparing some orange slices.

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To which I added chopped red onion and rice vinegar, sesame oil and olive oil. Next I grated the beetroot. This always looks like a blood bath… I highly recommend wearing gloves!

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Next I added chopped walnuts and chopped parsley and seasoned the salad with salt, pepper, some dried thyme and balsamic vinegar.

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It went great with the other salad and the delicious meat.

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Peanut Butter Cookies

My newest excuse for not writing daily: I lay flat on my back digesting the most indulgent peanut butter cookies I have ever tasted!
The recipe is from a friend who is trying to sabotage my christmas party dress diet…
To make the dough mix 1/2 cup soft butter, 1/2 cup peanut butter, 1/2 cup white sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar, seeds of 1/2 vanilla pod and 1 egg yolk.

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Then mix in 1 and 1/4 cups of flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 3/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda.
Knead the mix into a dough and form little balls. Dip the balls in sugar (optional but recommended) and flatten a little with a fork.

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Bake in the preheated oven at 190C for about 10-12 minutes and initially leave to cool on the baking tray as they are very soft when coming out of the oven.

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Don’t eat all at once!

Matzo Balls

Today’s recipe is from a new Swiss bestseller nominated for the Swiss Book Prize 2012: Wolkenbruchs wunderliche Reise in die Arme einer Schickse (translates into Wolkenbruch’s fantastical journey into the arms of a shiksa and you find a review in English on the blog Lovegermanbooks).
At the end of the book there is a recipe for matzo balls. I had to try it and I will do it again and again as it is very easy and the matzo balls are delicious!
Mix 3 eggs, 1/2 cup cold water, 1 tablespoon of oil, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 cup of matzo flour. Leave for an hour to soak. With wet hands (this seems to be important) roll the mix into little balls. Drop the balls into boiling salted water and leave to simmer for 10 minutes.

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I served the matzo balls with a chicken and vegetable soup.

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A yumly sweet & sour sauce

I recently discovered Yumly, a plattform for sharing and tagging recipes. One particular recipe caught my eye because it is short and sweet or rather sweet & sour. It was a recipe for “the best sweet and sour sauce”. It simply combines 1 cup pineapple juice, 1/3 cup water, 3 tablespoons rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 1/2 cup brown sugar (and cornstarch to bind it).
I started off by frying diced onion in sesame oil and adding the brown sugar for some caramelizing effect.

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Next I threw in my vegetables (diced red pepper, courgette and tomato) and all of the other ingredients listed above (plus Worcestershire Sauce).

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In a pot I boiled asian noodles and sausage meat balls and stirred them into my sweet and sour sauce.

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I am not sure it’s the best ever sweet and sour sauce but a damn fine one. There wasn’t a shred of noodle or drop of sauce left.

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Magenbrot

Firstly, I think I have to own up. My blog is no longer recipes365 but recipes365ish… I just did not find the time or nerve for cooking and baking over the weekend. But today I made Magebrot which translates into Stomach Bread. It is a snack typically sold at fun fairs and similar events. It is very sweet with wintry spices.
For about 40 pieces you need 250g brown flour (Ruchmehl), 125g brown sugar, 1 tablespoon chocolate powder, 1/2 a tablespoon allspice, 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon, 1 tablespoon baking powder and a pinch of salt. Put all of these in a bowl.

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In a pan mix 1.25dl water, 1.25dl milk and 50g honey and warm it until the honey has melted. Add the liquid to the bowl with the dry ingredients and mix well.

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Spread out the dough on a baking tray until it is about 1.5 thick.

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Bake at 180C for about 15 minutes. Then leave to cool and when it has cooled down cut into 2cm by 4cm pieces.

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In a pan melt 10g butter and 60g chocolate (I used half dark and half milk chocolate) with 3 tablespoons water. When the butter and chocolate have melted, stir in 1 tablespoon chocolate powder and 125g powdered sugar.

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Now cover small batches of the cut up ‘bread’ with the chocolate glaze by giving them a good stir in a bowl.

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A delicious and sinful treat (tonsandtons of calories)….

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