Ricotta Cheesecake with Figs and Honey 

I hope you’re not surprised to see yet another recipe with figs. They are just simply one of my favorite foods and they are only available in a nearly nonexistent timeframe here. I have to get them while I can. This is my go-to cheesecake recipe. I love it because it’s not too sweet and uses great cheeses. I decided to add figs for an obvious reason and a bit of honey.

It’s really quite a process to make, but so worth it. This is the recipe I use. In my fig and caramelized onion pizza post I explained my oven situation. It sucks. So I promise this cheesecake isn’t burned. It’s just very browned. Thanks oven. I adjusted the recipe to my liking by only using a cup of sugar instead of a cup and a half. The i drizzled honey on top and arranged the figs on top.

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Golden Beet and Watercress Salad


I’ve been loving golden beets. It seems like a crazy thing to love but they are slightly more mellow than red beets and that makes them perfect for salads, especially when fried. This is a great salad for yourself at lunch or make a large bowl of it to share.

Ingredients:

  1. Bunch of watercress
  2. 1 radish, sliced thinly
  3. 1 golden beet
  4.  1 Avocado, sliced
  5.  Balsamic vinaigrette

To cook the beets: first slice the beets then, steam the beets in the microwave until tender. Seer the beets in a frying pan coated with olive oil over medium-high heat until golden brown, flip occasionally. Let cool.

Assemble the salad: layer the watercress, beets, radish and avocado onto a plate. Drizzle with your favorite balsamic vinaigrette. Bon appétit!

My Top 3 Cookbooks 

Fun fact: my dream career as a child was to be a chef. I’ve always had an innate love for food, cooking and cookbooks. I grew up in a household where Barefoot Contessa cookbooks were flowing and this had a big impact on me.  I tend to gravitate towards cookbooks with great photos and, lots of them. Being a Francophone comes with its territories; I’m pretty sure there’s a rule book stating that every francophone must love French food or at least just food in general. But I also am deeply tide to my Swedish roots and love everything Scandinavian, including the food. So my top 3 cookbooks incorporate all of these criterium.

My Paris Kitchen by David Leibovitz is such a good book for the current day in age. There are plenty of classic French dishes but he also incorporates a lot of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern recipes which I really appreciate. The photos are beautiful and he talks a lot of having a very ‘basic’ kitchen, essentially a French kitchen. Small, probably no counter space and limited gadgets. But that’s okay because some of the best food comes from French kitchens. This is another quality I really enjoy about this book. I don’t get around to making much of the main dishes in here, because its all meat, but my favorite recipe is the Israeli Couscous. It’s a staple of mine. Sometimes I make it with quinoa for a bit of a healthier option but I love using dates, figs, lemon preserves and cinnamon to make this dish.

Nordic Light by Simon Bajada is just wow. It left me speechless when I first flipped through it. The photos pack a punch in the best way possible and the recipes are classically Scandinavian but with healthy twists. I especially love making the fish recipes in here as an inexperienced cooker of meats and fish. On Mother’s Day I made my mom the buckwheat crepes and salted caramel sauce. They were amazing and the salted caramel sauce is a great solution to an otherwise unhealthy option. It’s nut butter, honey, maple syrup and sea salt. Mix it together and voilà a very healthy salted caramel sauce. I feel that these are the kinds of recipes I will be making for decades to come.

Fika and Hygge by Brontë Aurell is true gold. The photos, the hygge and the delicious recipes are enough for me for the rest of my life. I just want beautiful winter weather, unlimited baking time and a cup of coffee when flipping through this book. The recipes are a lot to take on; most of them have several components that can be time consuming but it is always worth it. I love the rhubarb custard cake the most out of everything I’ve made from this one. The perfect balance of cake and custard and rhubarb will forever be a favorite of mine.

 

Chocolate-y Chunk Ginger Snaps

cookies1

It seems that Sundays around here were meant for baking. I invited my good friend and fellow blogger, Samantha Nitti, over for a festive baking party which included and was not limited to, listening to records of various festive sorts, sipping eggnog and hot chocolate and catching up on each others lives. It was great to spend time with Samantha and I always feel like I get to know her a little better each time we see each other. As I’ve said before, baking is very therapeutic. The recipe we decided to use was from The Kitchen McCabe but we both love chocolate and found it very fitting to stuff each cookie with a chocolate chunk. Samantha and I actually initially bonded over our love of chocolate chunks. The recipe is very easy to follow and only takes about 25 minutes to make. The outcome was a classic chewy ginger snap with a creamy chocolate center. We had also decided last minute to throw some crushed sea salt on the top. Yes, we both love the ‘salted everything’ craze but it just adds a whole new dimension of flavor to these cookies. We loved everything about the cookies and Harrison can attest to that as he was our Official Taste Tester. These cookies would make a great holiday treat to share or to give as a scrumptious gift.

Try them out and let us know what you thought!

hannah13

hannah12

It’s a Mod Weekend: Picnic at Sunset

One night this weekend we packed ourselves a picnic, ventured down to the park surrounding the marina and soaked in some of the great city views Milwaukee has to offer.  We gathered up some raspberries, blackberries, dried figs, yogurt Craisins and watermelon. To keep it simple and easy, I whipped up two flatbreads. They both had a base of marscapone cheese and I topped one with sliced cucumbers, mint and blackberry. The other was peach slices, raspberries and basil. The flatbreads were delicious, Harrison agrees, super easy to make and perfect to pack up for a picnic. And of course it wouldn’t be picnic for me without a bottle of Perrier. We biked down before sunset, set up the picnic under a tree, and just relaxed, ate and enjoyed the views. My dress and Harrison’s pants and shirt are from Zara that we bought almost a month ago so we decided our picnic was a good time to sport our new frocks. I think this shirt is perfect for Harrison, I mean it has minibikes on it… and doesn’t he just look suave reclining there? We love moments like this together, simple but meaningful. Here are a few snapshots of our evening. What are your favorite types of moments shared with your friends, family and/or significant other?