Basic potato pancakes

Basic potato pancake recipeYey! The pancake day is here! I thought I will share one of my savoury pancake recipe for this occasion ;-). It’s a potato pancake but not how you imagine. It’s not an Eastern European type of pancake that taste a little like a hash brown (although they are very tasty too) and it’s not a vegan type of pancake either. However it is a very versatile pancake that is tasty on it’s own or with the filling. I adapted this recipe from this waffle recipe. I loved it too much, but now in the pancake form I think I can enjoy it more frequently. Yum! Basic potato pancake recipeBASIC POTATO PANCAKES

  • 2 medium sized potatoes, cut into small uniform pieces
  • 2-4 garlic cloves
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary leaves (optional)
  • 60ml olive oil
  • 160ml milk
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 125g plain flour
  • salt and pepper to taste

1. Put potatoes and garlic in a large pot with cold water to cover. Add a pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Then lower heat and cook until potatoes can be pierced easily with a fork drain, reserving about 60ml of potato/garlic water.Basic potato pancake recipe 2. While potatoes cook, puree onions with rosemary leaves if using. Heat olive oil and fry onion in a frying pan over low heat just until onion softens a bit.Basic potato pancake recipe3. Transfer the potatoes and garlic into the bowl or large mixing jug. Mash it and mix it together with onions.
4. Gradually add garlic/potato water, oil, milk and eggs while constantly mixing so it all combines well. Eventually add flour and seasoning and give a last mix. Basic potato pancake recipe 5. Fry pancakes in well heated pan with little oil. Pour one spoonful to the pan and immediately start swirling round the pan to get nice even layer. Lift the pancake to flip and cook the other side as well. Basic potato pancake recipe Serve it either with a dollop of creme fraiche  and parsley. Basic potato pancake recipeOr if you like you can use these pancakes as a wrap. There are quite many fillings to experiment with. We had chicken roast the other day so that went really well with it!Basic potato pancake recipe Basic potato pancake recipeEnjoy!
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Salad in a crepe

Nicoice salad in a crepe recipeMy love for crepes have reached the next level while in France. I knew crepes can be savoury and sweet but it never crossed my mind that crepes can be served with salad inside it. Woaaaah!!! Sunny times like these require a lot of salad eating I think! I also decided to brave up this time and make crepes 100% buckwheat (we all know pancakes without gluten are just too complicated). But after many failures you eventually get it, buckwheat pancakes need a lot of practice and patience. If you are not up for challenge, regular crepes/pancakes taste just fine ;-).Nicoice salad in a crepe recipeNICOISE SALAD IN A CREPE
(for the crepe)

  • 200g buckwheat flour
  • pinch of salt
  • about 500ml water
  • knob of butter for frying

(for the salad)

  • 3-4 potatoes, pealed and thinly sliced
  • sunflower oil
  • 200g canned tuna in brine
  • 20 green olives, halved
  • 1 cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1 handful of lettuce, chopped
  • 1 handful cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 3 eggs, quatered
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard (we did not use it here, but I think it would taste good)
  • 1 clove of garlic, crushed to paste
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • chives, finelly chopped

1. First prep the crepe batter by combining all the ingredients. Start with dry ingredients and then gradually add water into it till the batter reach double cream consistently (be careful not to overmix). Refrigerate for an hour or overnight.
2. Boil the eggs.
3. Fry the potatoes in the frying pan with the generous amount of oil.Nicoice salad in a crepe recipe4. Make the salad. Arrange prepped ingredients ready for serving. Sprinkle with chives and seasoning.Nicoice salad in a crepe recipe5. To make vinaigrette combine vinegar, olive oil, dijon mustard, garlic paste, lemon juice and sugar in the jug. Add salt and pepper to taste. Nicoice salad in a crepe recipe6. Melt the butter in well heated frying pan. Pour one spoonful of crepe batter and immediately start swirling round the pan to get nice even layer. Loosen around the edge with a spatula once the top “dries up”, then turn the crepe and cook for further 1 minute. As you can see its not easy as with lack of gluten these crepes are flaky and therefore easily collapse when flipping. However I am sure lovely crepes can be achieved once you have a bit of practice.Nicoice salad in a crepe recipe7. To serve arrange Nicoise salad on the crepe and scatter more chives on the top.Nicoice salad in a crepe recipeBon Apetitte
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Savoury pesto crepes (cheese filling is the best!!!)

Pesto crepes filled with cheese recipeTruth to be told I recently started to dislike mealtimes with my kiddies. Lukas has reached such a fussy age that I can’t predict if the food I make will meet his standards. Can anyone relate to this? And guess what, it’s not a gourmet food he is after. It’s pasta and pancakes that makes him really happy. Ok, we recently found out that he also likes curry, but I shall keep this story for another post. Ok? For now lets talk pancakes… hmmm
I came up with pesto crepes on one of those days when I wanted to keep lunch time casual. You see, sometimes Tomas goes for a nap in the middle of the day, which is why I started using this time to sort the meals out. I prep the dinner (often in slow cooker) and then me and Lukas casually lunch in the kitchen. I sit Lukas up on the counter while I fry some pancakes for him. I find this totally relaxing as I love nibbling on pancakes myself (with a cup of coffee on the side of course). This week I added pesto into the crepe batter which was a game changer. I started imagining how I could add different herbs next time as well  because it is so easy to make your own pesto using different kinds of bases (it can even be spinach!!). And most of all Lukas liked these “pancakes” equally as the plain ones. I made these savoury and filled it with cheese and tomato which was even better.
PESTO CREPES

  • 200g flour
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch of sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp butter, melted (+ more for frying)
  • about 350ml water or milk
  • 4-6 tbsp pesto (doesn’t have to be basil pesto)

1. Place the flour into the bowl together with eggs, sugar, salt and butter. Whisk everything together into a dry mass. While whisking begin pouring the water gradually into the flour mass (not all in one go because you might not need it all). You are aiming for a batter consistency that easily drips down the whisk when held up but still leaves temporary traces when whisked. Pesto crepes filled with cheese recipe 2. Add pesto and mix again to combine.Pesto crepes filled with cheese recipe 3. You will need to fry pancakes in a well heated pan with a little butter. Pour one spoonful of batter into the pan and immediately start swirling round the pan to get a nice even layer. If you are having a cheese filling then add it at this stage as it needs to melt while the crepe is still frying. Pesto crepes filled with cheese recipe Just roll the crepe once the cheese is slightly melted.Pesto crepes filled with cheese recipe Best eaten warm!Casual lunch me and a toddler!Enjoy!
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Breakfast banana bread

Breakfast banana bread recipeI am not going to lie, last week was a bit difficult. Coming back from holidays straight to real word is overwhelming! And we are going for another holiday again next week so not sure how I am going to cope to do this all over again. One thing is certain, I am trying to prepare as much as I can for it. Last week I had a meltdown when I find out we have no bananas left for breakfast. This is why this time round I am making banana bread to put in the freezer just in case so I can toast it if I am in banana emergency again (sounds funny, but it was seriously an emergency because banana is a very important staple in our house). I made this banana with porridge oats and replaced sugar with honey, so it is sort of healthier than regular banana bread. It’s not like I am giving cake to kids for their most important meal!
BREAKFAST BANANA BREAD

  • 160g honey
  • 100g butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp yogurt
  • 500g ripe bananas (4-6 bananas) + 1 for the decoration
  • 100g porridge oats
  • 150g plain flour
  • 2tsp baking powder

1. in the blender or food processor cream butter with honey then add eggs and yogurt and whizz once again.Breakfast banana bread recipe2. Add remaining ingredients, including pealed bananas and turn the food processor on to make a smooth banana bread mixture. Breakfast banana bread recipe 3. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking tin. Top it with sliced banana and bake it in preheated 180C oven till it is baked through.Breakfast banana bread recipe 4. Don’t slice baked banana bread while it is still hot like me here. It wont cut well as it is a very very moist banana bread. Once it’s cool it can be eaten straight away or frozen ready sliced.Breakfast banana bread recipeHope January is treating you well!
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Cheesecake for breakfast

Fit-for-breakfast cheesecake recipe When in Lithuania we were eating loads. No wonder I gained so much weight! Never the less I am missing Lithuanian food, especially the cheesecake (technically it’s a curd cake) that is fit to eat for breakfast. I was so eager to try and make one myself that as soon as I got home I tried making it using more available alternative, Ricotta (so it is a cheesecake after all!). I would personally say that I could not notice any difference between two. I love that it is not too sugary and can be dressed up as you like. I love it with cream fraiche and pureed strawberries. Next time I shall try with honey me thinks ;-).
FIT-FOR-BREAKFAST CHEESECAKE
makes a very small cheesecake that makes up breakfast for two (feel free to double up)

  • 2tbsp semolina
  • 4tbsp full fat milk
  • 50g butter
  • 2tbsp sugar
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 250g ricotta cheese

1. soak semolina in milk for at least 30min or overnight in the fridge.
2. Cream butter with sugar than gradually add egg yolks, soaked semolina, ricotta cheese and mix everything to combine well. Carefully fold in whisked egg whites.Fit-for-breakfast cheesecake recipe3. Spoon the cake mixture into lined spring form. Bake in 180C preheated oven for 25-30min.Fit-for-breakfast cheesecake recipe4. Meanwhile prep your toppings. I pureed strawberries with a little sugar (you need it somewhere sometimes).Fit-for-breakfast cheesecake recipe5. Serve it warm or cold the next day. Fit-for-breakfast cheesecake recipe Fit-for-breakfast cheesecake recipeEnjoy!
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Pinterest challenge: savoury waffles with blue cheese and bacon

Savoury waffles with blue cheese and baconLately we have been very tired. One moment I thought we were handling our lot as parents of two really well, the next day I feel like I am back at square one. Tomas is going through a bad sleep patch (hope thats temporary) and I for the first time ever have got a painful back.
At least one thing have not changed! We are still having our luxurious breakfast every Saturday that have become a tradition in our family. We always start our weekend with something special ;-). Here is what we had last weekend, savoury waffles with blue cheese and bacon, from Pinterest of course! I thought they were little rich so serving it with tomato salsa or salad is perfection.Savoury waffles with blue cheese and bacon SAVOURY WAFFLES WITH BLUE CHEESE AND BACON adopted from What Should I Eat for Breakfast Today
serves two exhausted parents

  • 130g flour
  • 1 egg
  • 250ml buttermilk (or 125ml milk mixed with 125ml yogurt)
  • 3 slices bacon, fried and cut into small pieces
  • 50g blue cheese, cut into small pieces
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 30g butter, melted
  • tomato salsa or salad to serve (optional)

1. Mix all the ingredients in the bowlSavoury waffles with blue cheese and bacon2. Heat the waffle iron pan or the waffle maker, grease it liberally (I do it with butter) and pour the waffle mixture in ready to fry (1-2 spoons at the time). I use fork to detach the waffles from the pan but this probably would not work with the non stick pans, so be careful.Savoury waffles with blue cheese and bacon Savoury waffles with blue cheese and baconHope you all have a fab weekend!
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Chocolate oat porridge with dates and bananas

Chocolate oat porridge with dates and bananasAfter drowning my post pregnancy sorrows in sugar (as I often say) for past few months, I finally feel like ready to go sugar free again. Ok, maybe not totally cutting out sugar just yet, but definitely reducing it by at least removing added sugar. Here is what I have been having for most of my breakfasts past two weeks, which is a simple porridge that is sweetened with just dates and bananas. Chocolate for breakfast have not been more satisfying than this, yum!
CHOCOLATE OAT PORRIDGE WITH DATES AND BANANAS serves one

  • 1 sachet of 27g oats porridge + milk according to package instructions
  • 1 tsp coco powder
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 3-4 dates, chopped
  • 1 banana, sliced

1. Place all ingredients into microwavable bowl (except dates and banana) and mix briefly to combine.
2. Microwave for 2min or according to the oat porridge package instructions
3. Top the porridge with chopped dates and banana
Chocolate oat porridge with dates and bananas Chocolate oat porridge with dates and bananasSorry but not sorry that it is so simple. I thought I need to share this recipe anyways as it makes a very satisfying breakfast, without giving into sugar
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Pancake day in a French style

Pancake day in a French styleSince the pancake day is approaching soon (the day surely not to be missed) I have been practicing making pancakes the French way. I of course were learning from the best, Rachel Khoo and her book “Little Paris Kitchen”, that I am reading right now. It turns out that French don’t only live on crepes but also galettes, which is tricky type of pancake made purely from buckwheat flour. While I have made similar pancakes to crepes before, I was clueless about the galettes. This is why I decided to share the recipe with you here.
GALETTES adopted from Rachel Khoo book “Little Paris Kitchen”

  • 200g buckwheat flour
  • a pinch of salt
  • about 600ml water
  • melted butter for frying

1. Mix the flour and salt in the bowl (or jug). Gradually mix in the water, adding only enough for the batter to have consistency of double cream. Don’t overdo as this will make rubbery galettes. Place the bowl into the fridge for an hour at least.French galettes recipe2. Melt the butter in well heated frying pan. Pour one spoonful of batter and immediately start swirling round the pan to get nice even layer. Loosen around the edge with a spatula once the top “dries up”, then turn the galette and cook for further 1 minute.French galettes recipeThese can then be eaten with sugar and cinnamon, French galettes recipe or any other filling, I think savoury ones suits best. Like the cream cheese with salmon, Yum!Happy pancake once it comes!
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Haddock Monte Carlo

Haddock Monte CarloFew weeks ago we went to Center Parcs for a weekend away and while there I had this wonderful breakfast called Haddock Monte Carlo. When at home I researched about this a little and it turns out its not a breakfast item! I still think it is better suited for breakfast however… you see, you kind of need to eat this as soon as it is cooked and this is not what we do for dinner. At least not in our family! But then again it depends how it works best for you. I like making slow cooker meals for dinner when I can just dish out the food when we are ready and for Saturday special breakfast I like to make something quickish that we eat as soon as it is ready. All I am saying that Haddock Monte Carlo is hard to time but in return it is quick to make!
Another thing I found is that Haddock Monte Carlo comes in different versions, some seem very complicated and needs a some prep the night before! I of course chose a recipe that I thought was the closest to what I ate on our holiday in Center Parcs. And it did turn out pretty much the same, except the recipe that I used was a difficult to understand. Thankfully, after making this dish I can tell how I made it so hopefully you have an easer time with it ;-).
HADDOCK MONTE CARLO adopted from Big Oven
Makes 3-4 portions

  • 600g pealed potatoes (about 3 regular size potatoes)
  • 2tsp wholegrain mustard
  • handful of chives, chopped
  • 300ml double cream
  • 50g butter (about 2 heaped tbsp)
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 3-4 smoked hadock fillets, undyed
  • 250ml fish stock
  • 250ml white wine
  • salt and pepper
  • 3-4 eggs
  • 2 tomatoes, skinned and chopped

1. First things first, put the potatoes to boil. This takes the longest to do!
2. Once the potatoes are cooked, mash them and add mustard, chives (reserving some for later) and have of double cream. Mix again to make into creamy mash.Haddock Monte Carlo3. Next up is haddock with sauce! Melt the butter in the frying pan and fry the shallots till golden. Fry the haddock fillets in the same pan on both sides for few seconds then add fish stock and wine. Cover and allow to simmer for 5 minutes. Add the leftover cream and remove the pan from the heat. Season to taste.Haddock Monte Carlo4. Meanwhile pouch the eggs. My tip is to do in in the shallow pan (like frying pan) and with a bit of vinegar added to the boiled but not boiling water.Haddock Monte Carlo5. Put the mashed potato mixture in the centre of a plate and place the haddock on top. Put the poached egg on top of the fish and spoon the sauce over. Garnish with chopped chives and tomatoes. Haddock Monte CarloEnjoy!
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Breakfast crepe

Breakfast crepeWhen in France we enjoyed the crepes a lot. They even have cafes called Creperie! Although they are more like a chain of cafeterias rather then a cafe dedicated to crepes. I of course wanted to recreate the experience one morning of eating my favourite crepe for breakfast. This is when I accidentally woke up earlier than Lukas (which does not happen very often unfortunately). I did not use 100% buckwheat flour like they would in France, but I thought 50/50 will do so I don’t pull all my hair out while making it. The results are here as follow ;-). Breakfast crepe BREAKFAST CREPE WITH HAM AND EGG makes 4 crepes

  • 50g buckwheat flour
  • 50g plain flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp oil + more for frying
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • about 200ml milk or water

1. I start with making the batter first. Place the flour into the bowl together with eggs, oil, salt and pepper. Whisk everything together into the dry mass. While whisking begin pouring the water (or milk) gradually into the flour mass (not all in one go because you might not need it all). You are aiming for a batter consistency that easily drips down the whisk when held up but still leave temporary traces when whisked.Breakfast crepe Breakfast crepe2.You need to fry crepes in well heated pan with oil. Pour one spoonful to the pan and immediately start swirling round the pan to get nice even layer. I flipped my crepe to fry the other side, but this is completely unnecessary. Once the top is dry to touch you can add some ham and eggs on top and carry on frying just a little longer. Breakfast crepe3. When the egg is done you can fold the edges and serve it warm.Breakfast crepeEnjoy
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