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Archive for March, 2014

Gulerodskage

Gulerodskage

And so this is how the story goes. I was suppose to have been born in April and my mother was going to name me April, but I decided to come early and surprise everyone. I arrived on March 31st, just shy of being an Aprils fool 🙂 and my mother no longer wanted to name me April, but had no other name picked out for me. So she let my siblings (Jonna, Benny and John) pick out a name for me and I believe it was my oldest brother John who came up with my name…Gitte. Tak John, det er jo et dejligt navn. Happy birthday to me 😀

Gulerodskage med flødeost glasur

Gulerodskage med flødeost glasur

This year my birthday cake is a delicious Carrot Cake from Claus Meyer’s book Meyers Kager. The cake is not overly sweet which is nicely offset by the tart and sweet cream cheese frosting. I did have a wee bit of trouble with the temperature and baking time. I think Claus Meyer may be baking with a convection oven and so the cake actually baked a lot faster than anticipated. The original baking time called for 75 minutes but the cake was done after 60 minutes. I also had to cover the cake with foil after the first 45 minutes to prevent further browning but all ended well and the cake got great reviews. This cake is definitely a keeper.

Making Gulerodskage

Making Gulerodskage

Ingredients for the cake:

75 g hazelnuts (2.6 oz), chopped

200 g unsalted butter (7 oz), room temperature

250 g sugar (8.8 oz), divided into two portions of 125 g each (4.4 oz)

6 large eggs

200 g shredded carrots (7 oz)

200 g almond flour (7 oz)

50 g all-purpose flour (1.7 oz)

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

50 g golden raisins (1.7 oz)

Ingredients for the frosting:

400 g cream cheese (14 oz)

115 g unsalted butter (4 oz), room temperature

225 g confectioners sugar (7.9 oz)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (~350 degrees F). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the chopped hazelnut out onto the baking sheet. Toast in oven for 5 minutes, remove from oven and let cool.

Lower oven temperature to 175 degrees C (~345 degrees F). Grease a 22 cm (~8 inch) spring-form pan with butter, add a couple of tablespoons of sugar, shake and turn the pan to coat sides and bottom with sugar, discard excess sugar, set pan aside.

Separate eggs into yolks and egg whites, set aside. Beat butter and half of the sugar (125 g or 4.4 oz) until white and creamy. Add egg yolks to butter mixture one at the time, continue to beat until well incorporated. Add shredded carrots and almond flour to butter mixture. Sift together all-purpose flour, baking powder and cinnamon, add to butter mixture and beat until incorporated. Add toasted hazelnuts and raisins, mix only until incorporated. Set mixture aside.

In a large clean, dry bowl add egg whites and using clean, dry beaters, beat egg whites until soft peaks start to form. While continuing to beat, add remaining half of sugar (125 g or 4.4oz) and beat until you have stiff, shiny peaks.

Using a spatula add a small amount of whipped egg whites to dough mixture, stir until combined. Add remaining whipped egg whites in half increments and gently fold the whites into the dough. When all incorporated pour mixture into prepared spring-form. Bake in the middle of oven for 55-60 minutes or until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center of cake comes out clean. (Note: I loosely covered the cake with foil to prevent further browning after the first 45 minutes of baking). Allow cake to cool completely on a baking rack before applying the frosting.

To make frosting:

Add cream cheese, butter and confectioners sugar to a bowl and beat until smooth and silky. Spread frosting onto cooled cake and serve. Enjoy!

Source: slightly adapted from Meyers Kager

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Skidne Æg (Smiling Eggs In Mustard Sauce)

Skidne Æg (Smiling Eggs In Mustard Sauce)

I think it’s about high time that I make something Danish again and with Easter approaching I thought this lunch or dinner plate would be great. For this particular Danish dish, I choose to rename the dish rather than translating it because the name is not all that appetizing. If you google translate the name it gives you “dirty” or “filthy” eggs, and so smiling eggs sounds a little better to me.

Skidne Æg is an old-fashioned dish and today in Denmark it can still be found on the Danish Easter lunch table, but it can be served anytime really. It used to be served on the Saturday before Easter which was known as Skiden Lørdag (dirty Saturday). I should explain that in Denmark this Saturday is flanked by two holidays on either side; Skærtorsdag (Maundy Thursday) and Langfredag (Good Friday) on one side and Påske (Easter) and Anden Påskedag (Easter Monday) on the other side. So the Saturday in-between the holidays was the day when you were busy cleaning house from having company and needed something easy for dinner, and this is indeed a very easy and delicious dish.

When you make Skidne Æg you can use a spicy mustard or perhaps a milder Dijon mustard or a whole grain mustard, just choose whichever is your favorite mustard. When you cook the eggs you want them to be, what in Danish is referred to as “smiling” eggs. The outer layer of the yolk should be slightly firm and the yolk center soft, so not hard boiled and not soft boiled, but in-between. Actually, I like them a little more on the soft boiled side, so again boil the eggs the way you like them 🙂 I hope you enjoy this classic Danish dish.

Skidne Æg (serves 2)

Ingredients:

4 eggs

4 tablespoons butter

4 tablespoons flour

1/2 liter milk (16 oz)

3 tablespoon mustard (your favorite kind)

salt to taste

Serving suggestions:

toasted dark rye bread (Rugbrød), fresh fried chopped bacon, top with chives

Directions:

Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add eggs and boil until soft boiled (cooking time varies depending on egg size, I used a size large egg and boiled for 7 minutes). When done boiling, pour out boiling water, add cold water and let sit for 1 minute. Peel eggs and set aside.

Meanwhile in a small pan, melt butter. Once butter is melted add flour and whisk vigorously while cooking for 1-2 minutes. Add milk in increments while stirring until you have a slightly thick Bechamel sauce. Add mustard, stir and let simmer for another two minutes. Season with salt to taste. Add boiled eggs to sauce and allow to heat through. Serve with toasted dark rye bread and enjoy!

Source: My Danish Kitchen

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Italiensk Oksebov - Italian Beef Stew

Italiensk Oksebov – Italian Beef Stew

This winter seems to be going on forever and I don’t recall it ever being this cold in Virginia before. We, of course, have not had the extreme amount of snow that the rest of the country have experienced, but we did get one big snowfall which turned out to be a lot of fun. All the neighbors in our neighborhood, got together and helped shovel snow from each other’s driveways, and the day was wrapped up with a party, with lots of good food, at a neighbors house.

And so while we all continue to hunker down inside our homes, waiting for spring to arrive, I can recommend this wonderful Italian beef stew which is sure to warm your soul. I adapted this recipe from a Danish food blog called Dalsgaard i Skivholme, which I enjoy reading. The stew is very flavorful and equally good with or without the Rosemary, so I left the Rosemary as optional. Also the original recipe had white beans in it which I left out due to danger that my cooking pot would otherwise overflow. Please enjoy!

Italiensk Oksebov – Italian Beef Stew

Ingredients:

500 gram beef cubes

salt and pepper

extra virgin olive oil

1 large onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

8 oz mushrooms, sliced

14 oz diced tomatoes

7 oz tomato sauce

1 glass white wine

chili powder – a dash

sugar – a dash

apple cider vinegar – a splash (1-2 tablespoons)

fresh rosemary, 1 twig

Directions:

Trim beef cubes and cut into bite-size pieces. Season with salt and pepper. Heat a large pan to medium-high heat and sear beef in small portions. After searing beef, place the meat into a large cooking pot and add diced tomatoes and tomato sauce. Lower heat of pan to medium-low, add a 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add onions to pan and cook until translucent, add garlic and cook for 1 additional minute. Pour onion and garlic into the seared meat in cooking pot. Add mushrooms to pan and cook until slightly golden, add wine and simmer for another minute. Add mushrooms and wine into the beef mixture. Add chili powder, sugar and apple cider vinegar to beef stew. Add fresh rosemary (chopped or whole) to stew and let simmer over low heat for 1-2 hours. Serve with rice or mashed potatoes. Enjoy!

Source: adapted from Dalsgaard i Skivholme

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