Monday, January 26, 2009

Would you like a Danish or a Swede?

Yesterday, Ronny made what some people would call a 'Danish'. This particular 'Danish' was a kanel bullar and because we didn't have pärlsocker or Demerara sugar or any kind of coarse grained sugar, Ronny sprinkled coconut flakes on top instead.

Have any of you ever thought about how it's kind of strange to refer to something you eat by a nationality? Even stranger than a Danish is referring to rutabaga as a 'Swede', since grammatically, Danish doesn't come-out sounding a bit odd in random passages but Swede does.

I find it remotely disturbing when you come across passages on how to choose, peel, cut and cook a 'Swede' and out of context it sounds like cannibalism.

"Look for swedes with smooth, unblemished skins; smaller swedes have a sweeter flavour and a more tender texture." (Source: )

"I was hoping to have swede mash for breakfast.. but i have half a swede and no idea how long to cook, or prepare... or indeed what cooking method to use!! (Source: )

"Par cook the swede in plenty of boiling salted water, until tender but still firm, at the same time heat a little evoo in a frying pan and cook the bacon / kaesler until crispy." (Source: )

"Choose swedes of a good size, but not too large" (Source: )

Do any of you know any other foods that are referred to by the name of some nationality?

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Cauliflower Leaf & Stalk Soup with Parcels of Arzúa Ulloa Cheese & Fresh Oregano

I went to the Mercadillo in Arroyo de la Miel yesterday and purchased a few pots of herbs as well as a magnificent large cauliflower. I wanted to try making a recipe from Gluten-Free Bay and as I was making the Moroccan Cauliflower Recipe I realized I had lots of cauliflower leaves and stalks and remembered a lovely recipe Ilva posted in Lucullian Delights in 2007. The soup is called Very Cheap but Very Good Vegetable Soup.

I made a few modifications to suit Ronny's spice loving palate.

I have to tell you that what I really love about this recipe is that it's really 'cheap and good' and amazingly versatile, allowing for liberal modifications in the ratio of ingredients. Sometimes the soup will be greener and sometimes it will be redder and the taste will be a little different. After all, when you think about it - it's pretty difficult to get an exact amount of cauliflower leaves and stems isn't it? So make your own little modifications with the spirit of your taste buds guiding you!


Cauliflower Stem & leaves (I used about 1 Cup for this one - but this will vary for everyone)
2 Small Tomatoes
Chopped Parsley (a small bunch of them)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil

-----Additional Ingredients to the Original-----


2-3 Tsp Cumin Seeds
Ground Dried Red Chili
1 Clove Garlic (chopped finely)


3 Sheets of Rice Paper (the kind you use to make Vietnamese Spring Rolls)
6 Fresh Oregano Leaves
6 Pieces Arzúa Ulloa Cheese


Step 1: Fry the garlic and cumin seeds in the oil until they release their aroma and flavors.

Step 2: Throw in the chopped up cauliflower stems and leaves and fry until tender - about 3-4 minutes. Add chili powder during this stage and season a bit with salt.

Step 3: Throw in the chopped tomatoes and fry for another 3-4 minutes.

Step 4: Cover with water and simmer for about 15 minutes.

Step 5: When the contents of the soup look tender enough, put everything through a mixer until it's very creamy and then make the necessary adjustments, i.e. more salt, more water, etc...then set it aside.


Step 1: Put some hot water in a shallow flat container and gently put the rice paper inside. When it's soft remove it onto a damp cloth and cut it in two.

Step 2: Put a piece of cheese, salt and fresh oregano leaf and roll it up making a parcel. Make sure it's securely sealed so that the cheese doesn't leak out when you deep fry it.

Step 3: Deep fry the parcels and put them on top of the soup as a garnish...and enjoy!

I had a difficult time making nice looking parcels as you can see in the photograph - so don't worry if the rice paper isn't easy to handle. I guess it takes a little bit of practice before you can have your own way with them. A beginner's tip would be to make sure the water cools down a bit (from boiling point). If the water is too hot the rice paper will curl and stick together and become more difficult to handle.

Also, when you're deep frying them make a test with a small piece of rice paper to make sure the oil is hot enough. If the oil isn't hot enough the parcels will unravel inside the oil.

On another note, the parcels tasted really good. The burst of flavor of this very mild Spanish cheese, the aroma of the fresh oregano leaf and the spicy vegetable soup were a marriage made in heaven. OK, that's exaggerating a bit - but it was really, really good!

Does it sound like it's too much work? Try making the soup the day before. Then all you need to do is reheat the soup and make the parcels...which is what I did.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Spaghetti with Roasted Winter Squash & Sun Dried Tomatoes

Last night I was going to make Thai Cashew Chicken and then I realized I didn't have any anchovies, so I went down stairs to the little store in my apartment block and found to my dismay that they didn't have any anchovies.

They did however have some nice winter squash and some lovely Mandarin oranges which were going for 0.85 centimos/ 1 kg so I bought these and made Tianshui Inspired Stir-fried Pork instead. I'll share the recipe with you at some point but it's something I made based on memories of something I ate for lunch when I was in a remote western area of China years ago.

Anyhow, today I've made another adaptation of one of Ilva's recipes from Lucullian Delights. It's a modified version of Pasta with Oven Roasted Butternut Squash, Cauliflower, Sundried Tomatoes and Rosemary.

Of course, I just had to make this after I found this lovely sweet squash sitting there on the shelf whispering to me: Eat me! Eat me!

I really love the idea of roasting squash and making it into a pasta sauce and if you haven't tried any variations of this yet - you'll be surprised at how rich and full-bodied this sauce is. Who needs to eat meat if vegetables can taste like this?

Well, I'm just kidding - I'm pretty carnivorous - but well, you know - I do my best to eat more vegetables than I really want to and since I'm going to eat them anyway I want them to be delicious and since Ilva seems to have a lot of nice solutions for precisely this, I'm an avid fan of her blog.

I recommend you try Ilva's original recipe because her recipe is healthier and better. Mine is the short and dirty version even though you have to roast the squash longer!


200g Spaghetti Barilla No. 5

1/2 Medium to Small Sized Squash

4 Sundried Tomatoes (Oil Cured)

Rosemary (fresh or dried use whichever you have)

1/2 Small Red Onion (don't put too much of this or it will be overpowering)


Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Dried Red Chili

Black Pepper

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 250 C/482 F.

Step 2: Cube the squash into bite sized pieces and lay them in a casserole dish. Slice the onion thinly into about 1 inch or so and put these in the dish with the squash.

Step 3: Sprinkle salt, black pepper, chili on the squash and onions and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.

Step 4: Put this in the oven and bake for 35 minutes.

Step 5: Slice the sun dried tomatoes into bite-sized slivers and put them in the casserole dish with the squash after the first 35 min. and roast for another 10 min.

Step 6: During the last 10 min. time the boiling of your pasta so that your spaghetti is ready when the squash is ready.

Step 7: Mix the spaghetti with the roasted squash mixture and enjoy!

Serves 2 - but these are small portions and if this is all you're going to eat including dessert, you'll need to increase the amount of squash and pasta.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Tomatoes Stuffed with Barley Grits, Red Bell Peppers & Moroccan Oil Cured Black Olives, Wrapped in Samosa Pastry

This recipe is an adaptation of a recipe by Ilva from Lucullian Delights. Please click here for the original recipe.

Before you ask - yes, I'm still cooking with leftovers! I can't wait until tomorrow when I can go shopping again and buy new ingredients.


3-4 Tbsp Barley Grits (cooked)

4 Tomatoes (remove the seeds so that you have a shell you can fill)

1/2 Red Bell Pepper (slice into short thin pieces)

8 Oil Cured Black Olives (seed and cut into 2-3 pieces each)

Parsley (a handful of it chopped finely)

Fresh Basil Leaves (1-2 leaves per bundle)*

Onion (a small amount - finely chopped)

Parmesan Cheese (grated - and put a liberal amount into the barley grit mixture) *


Black Pepper

Chili Pepper

Step 1: Cook the barley grits in water. The ratio should be 1:3 (barley grits to water). Once it comes to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for 7 minutes. Don't overcook because we want the barley grits to have a texture similar to couscous.

Step 2: Braise the red bell peppers in extra virgin olive oil until they are soft, crispy and a bit blackened, and then turn off the heat.

Step 3: Mix the cooked barley grits, black olives, tomato seeds & onion into it. Season with salt, black pepper and chili. Mix in the parsley after the mixture has cooled down sufficiently (so that the parsley doesn't cook).

Step 4: Stuff the hollow tomatoes with this mixture.

Step 5: Wrap the tomatoes in Samosa pastry. Click here for the recipe...or substitute with frozen phyllo pastry. If you follow Manjula's recipe for Samosas divide the dough into 4 parts and just roll them out into circles and wrap up the tomatoes.

Step 6: Deep fry the pastries and serve hot....but be careful to let them cool down a bit so you don't scald your tongue.

*Unavailable due to meager rations in my pantry - but you should put these in to make it taste better!

NOTE: I was afraid the bundles of pastry might explode. They didn't but please be careful should you try making them.

Monday, January 19, 2009


I've been working on trying to make Socca the way I like it ever since I found a bag of chickpea flour in Fuengirola and I think I finally have a rough idea how to do it.

I followed a recipe in The New York Times by Mark Bittman and modified it to suit my tastes and the quirks of my oven.

What did I change?

First of all since I wasn't impressed by the soft Socca I made the first time, I divided the batter into two to get a thinner crispier Socca.

I also added 1 teaspoon of whole black peppercorns on top of the ground black pepper (though there was less than 1 teaspoon of the ground stuff in the batter), a generous amount of ground dried red chili peppers, some dried rosemary and sprinkled coarse salt over the batter after it was in the pan.

I set the initial temperature higher to 250C (482F) instead of 204 C (400F) and put the pan in the middle rack for 15 minutes, then moved it to a higher rack and maxed out the temperature for another 2-3 minutes.

And here's the result: A thin crispy Socca that crackles on the outside and is still somewhat soft inside. They were all gone within minutes of making their debut into this world.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Honey Cake from Auvergne

After going through 17 pages of mathematics I really felt a need to rest my brain and feed it some sugar so I opted for making one of my favorite cakes - which is the Honey Cake from Auvergne.

Although the chef suggests that you can slather butter or jam on it - I love it just the way it is, and it really does have this 'delicious honey flavor' and the aroma from the oven is just divine.

And guess what?

The recipe contains no eggs - so for those of you who are allergic to eggs, this is your cake.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

The Park Hyatt - Shinjuku

I'll be honest. I have nothing better to show you than some photographs we took in Tokyo, because I'm currently proofreading a paper on mathematics and mathematics has never been my forte. Instead of frying things my brains are fried.

Anyway this is a photograph we took at the Park Hyatt. What's so great about the Park Hyatt in Shinjuku besides the architecture? Well, the view is stunning from the Peak Lounge and it's a great place for afternoon tea, so we went. Wish I had some nice photographs of the afternoon tea but we were too greedy about enjoying our tea and food there aren't any!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Italian Rice Balls

This is another way to get rid of leftover rice - nothing special but delicious and you can make different variations depending on what you have in your refrigerator. This recipe was adapted from an Italian cookbook written by Rosanna Zanbon Kato.


2 Cups Leftover Rice (a mixture of polished and unpolished rice) with Barley Grits

2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/2 Cup Tomato Sauce

Salt, Black Pepper, Chili, Oregano

8 Pieces of Arzúa-Ulloa Cheese

2-4 Tbsp Flour

1 Egg

1 Cup Bread Crumbs

Sunflower Oil (for deep frying)

Step 1: Heat-up the olive oil and fry the rice so that the grains are separated and coated with oil.

Step 2: Add the tomato sauce, oregano, salt, pepper and chili and cook for a bit longer, then remove from heat.

Step 3: Divide the contents of the pan into 8 parts.

Step 4: Make balls and put bits on cheese into the center.

Step 5: Dip the rice balls in the flour -->egg --->bread crumbs and deep fry it at 180C.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Tamagoyaki - Well, the little omelette you have on Sushi.

I obviously didn't make this beautiful 'Tamagoyaki' or the little omelette thing you see on top of Sushi sometimes. One of my sister's former students is going to inherit his family's Sushi business one day and on a lucky day in December, he invited us to come taste the fare.

The omelette is made in a Makiyakinabe and cooked at a very low temperature for hours. He told us that the only ingredients in this lovely thing are eggs, sugar and Sake. I can tell you that it didn't need anything else. It was delicious.

Matsunozushi 03-3761-5622

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Chicken Casserole with Platanos, Rice & Peanuts in a Yellow Curry Sauce

I'm sure anyone who eats Asian food from time to time has had to think of ways to recycle the leftover rice - because when you make more Asian food you want to have freshly cooked rice and when you cook rice you kind of need to cook a lot of it for it to turn out nice and fluffy.

We've made anything from fried rice to New Orleans Calas, but because we love variation, we're always looking for new ways to get rid of the excess rice.

Anyway today we were going to do some recycling with some leftovers and were at Carrefour picking-up a few things when Ronny mentioned that there was this casserole he used to make in Sweden. It sounded kind of interesting and since it used a lot of rice I said: Let's make it!

According to Ronny they have pizza in Sweden that has Platanos, peanuts, chicken and yellow curry sauce on it and when he was hungry one day and had some leftover rice he made this casserole.


1 Chicken Breast

Leftover Rice (Your casserole dish should not be more than half full)

1 Tsp Garam Masala<---Use your favorite mix.

3 Tsp S&B Japanese Curry Powder <----Any curry powder will do but this is the one we used.

1 Green Platano

A Handful of Peanuts

1 Can Coconut Milk (400 ml)

2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 Tbsp All Purpose Flour

5 Tbsp Dessiccated Coconut (or as much as you need to make a nice layer of this on top)


Black Pepper

Chili Powder

Step 1:
Chop-up the chicken breast into bite size pieces and fry them in the extra virgin olive oil. Season with salt, pepper and chili powder.

Step2: Put 1 Tbsp flour into the pan and toss the chicken in the flour.

Step 3: Pour the coconut milk into the pan.

Step 4: Then add curry powder, Garam Masala and salt to taste. Make sure the sauce is a bit 'salty' as this is going to have to flavor a lot of unseasoned rice.

Step 5: Put a layer of leftover rice in the casserole dish.

Step 6: Peel and chop the Platanos in 5 mm slices and mix them into the rice so that they're evenly distributed.

Step 7: Sprinkle this with a handful of peanuts.

Step 8: Pour the chicken curry sauce mixture onto this making sure the rice is covered with the sauce.

Step 9: Sprinkle a layer of dessicated coconut on top.

Step 10: Bake in a preheated oven at 250C for 15 min., then lower the heat to 200C and bake for another 10 min. Serve warm and enjoy!

Monday, January 12, 2009


I'm up at the crack of dawn every morning these days.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Green Tea Muffins

The Japanese have been using Matcha or green tea powder in their confections, cakes and anything sweet for years and these days it's becoming pretty common place among food bloggers. If you google 'Matcha' you'll find images of anything from Matcha Ice Cream to Matcha Madeleines. Green tea powder is easy to use because it doesn't have a very dominating flavor and gives your confections a bright green color.

These Green Tea Muffins were made by Ronny while I sat in the living room proofreading a paper by a mathematician. I can tell you that it was very nice when these came out of the oven warm and I have to admit I ate two of them - which is why we don't make these very often!


125 g Unsalted Butter (Melted and Cooled)
2.5 dl Refined White Sugar
3 Eggs
2 Tsp Vanilla Sugar
2 Tsp Matcha (Green Tea Powder)
2 Tbsp Honey
1.5 Tsp Baking Powder
Pinch of Salt
5 dl Flour
1 dl Milk

Step 1: Beat the sugar, vanilla sugar, pinch of salt and butter together than add the eggs and beat some more. Then add the honey.

Step 2: Sift the flour with the baking powder and Matcha.

Step 3: Mix the dry mixture and milk slowly into the wet mixture.

Step 4: Ladle the bright green mixture into the muffin tray and bake in a preheated oven at 200 C or 400 F. Enjoy.

These muffins will not be very sweet. If you want a sweeter muffin you'll have to add more honey.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Barley Porridge and What's Maddening about Andalucia

So it's the 9th now and Ronny's boss is still trying to find the missing accountant who has Ronny's set of documents for claiming unemployment benefits. Ronny was told he had 1 week to submit his papers and this was starting on the 7th so the number of days continues to dwindle as the elusive accountant is out having his vacation or whatever it is he's doing.

I had already foreseen that something like this might happen in Tokyo and I'm guessing that Ronny won't get his papers until the last day when he'll have to run to the unemployment office or more typically - he's going to get his papers AFTER the deadline.

This pretty much sums up what's maddening about living in Andalucia, which is lovely place in general but the work ethics of the local people isn't one of the nice things about this area.

Anyhow enough for my rant!

I had a lot of barley grits left over from yesterday so I thought I'd try and find other ways of using it.

I ended-up modifying the Hot Barley Breakfast with Honeyed Walnuts and it was good enough as warm breakfast cereals go, but I feel this could use a little more tweaking before it becomes heavenly.


A handful of walnuts
Enough honey to cover them
1 dl Barley Grits
3 dl Water
1 Tsp Unrefined Salt
1 Tbsp Sugar (I used refined sugar but you can use brown sugar)
1/5 Vanilla Pod
1 Small Apple
Dash of Cinnamon
1 dl Milk or however much you prefer

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 180C or 350F. Mix the walnuts and honey in a bowl and then lay them out flat on oven paper and roast for 5 min. The roasting time will depend on the consistency of your honey. Mine was very thick so at around the 5 min. mark it turned into caramel and I had to take it out of the oven. Set these aside and let it cool.

Step 2: Put the barley grits, water, salt and vanilla pod into a pan and once it's come to a boil, let it simmer for 7 min. or until the barley grits reach the consistency of porridge.

Step 3: While you're doing this chop up 1/2 of the apple finely and peel the skin off the other half so that's it's ready for grating.

Step 4: Mix in the sugar and milk then turn off the heat. Remove the vanilla pod and grate in half of the apple. Add a dash cinnamon.

Step 5: Ladle the barley grits into two bowls. Top off with the chopped up apples and honey roasted walnuts....Enjoy!

Serves 2

*Note: I think I'll leave the cinnamon out next time as it seemed a tad overpowering versus the delicate vanilla flavor. The honey roasted walnuts were really delicious and were a perfect match with the barley grits. I also have a feeling bananas might be a better fit than apples. I wonder what else might be a better fit than apples? Does anyone have any suggestions?

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Beef Barley Spring Rolls with Cocoa Chili Vanilla Sauce

Barley Beef Spring Rolls with Cocoa Chili Vanilla Sauce

I am participating in Paper Chef after all. After Ilva left a comment in my blog - I decided to run out, buy the ingredients and after some thought - I came-up with this East/West concoction.


20 Small Spring Roll Wrappers

1/4 Cup Barley Grits
400g Ground Beef
2 Cloves Garlic
1 Leek
1 Cucumber
1/4 Red, Green & Yellow Bell Peppers
A bunch of fresh mint leaves

1/2 Cup Pedro Ximenez 1927 Sherry
1/5 Vanilla Pod
Ground Dried Red Chili Pepper <---Use as much as you dare!
1 Tsp Pure Cocoa
2 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
A Pinch of Salt<---I use unrefined salt so it's more like 1 Tbsp, but you know what I mean.

Step 1: Prepare the barley grits according to the instructions but make sure they don't get too mushy. You want texture. I boiled mine in water with a bit of salt for 7 minutes. I used 1 part barley grits to 3 parts water.

Step 2: Chop up the garlic cloves finely and braise it in extra virgin olive oil. Then throw in the ground beef and braise it until all the liquid is gone. You don't want your spring rolls to be soggy.

Step 3: Mix the barley grits and ground beef in a bowl and leave it to cool down.

Step 4: Melt 2 Tbsp butter in a sauce pan and dissolve the cocoa powder in it. Then, pour in the sherry and 1/5 vanilla pod and let it simmer for 10-15 min. or until it's become a nice thick sauce. Salt to taste.

Step 5: Clean the leek and cut it into fine slivers resembling toothpicks. The finer you can cut them the better. They should be around 5.5 cm long or 2.15 inches but this is just an approximate so you don't have to get your ruler out and measure anything. Cut the cucumber and bell peppers in the same way. When you're done set these aside.

Step 6: Now you're ready to start preparing the spring roll wrappers. Pour hot water into a shallow dish and lower one wrapper at a time into it gently and let it soften. Remove it carefully without letting it tear onto a damp tea cloth and pat it dry.

Step 7: Put some of the ground beef & barley grit mixture on the wrapper, then put some leeks, cucumbers, bell peppers and top it with 1-3 leaves of mint leaves depending on the size of the leaves.

Step 8: Dip the spring rolls into the Cocoa Chili Vanilla Sauce and enjoy!

This turned out to be surprisingly delicious, because chili and vanilla marry well with cocoa and the fresh mint leaves provided the bridge between the sauce and spring roll.

Paper Chef

I have just realized I missed this month's Paper Chef. This round is being hosted by Spikey Mikeys so you might want to go and check it out.

This month's ingredients were: dried chili, vanilla pod, barley and beef. The first three ingredients are nominated by food bloggers as well as their readers and then 3 ingredients are picked by a random generator. The winner of the last round hosts the next round and gets to choose the 4th ingredient.

The ingredients usually are somewhat strange but the whole idea is to make everyone exercise their imagination and push their culinary prowess to the limit to create something new and wonderful - pleasing to the taste buds and the eye.

I have only participated once and sent in an abysmal looking photo which was hopelessly out of focus as my camera did not have a macro function. At the encouragement of Ilva of Lucullian Delights - who is helpful and encouraging to Food Blog noobs to participate more in this fun and innovative event - I bought a new camera at Yodobashi Camera during my trip to Tokyo so that I might make a better effort at participating in this event...and then of course I had to miss the first event. That sounds like the story of my life!

On another note - Ronny went into to Malaga yesterday to meet someone from his company to pick-up some documents needed for unemployment benefits and the man not only kept him waiting for 2 hours but never showed-up. Not only that - when you tried to call him he refused to answer his phone! Although this may sound like a terrible thing - it's pretty normal behavior in Andalucia. I guess after 5 years of living here, I shouldn't be surprised.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A New Beginning: 2009 - Sandwich Cake Anyone?

It's been five years or so since I aborted my career and started a new life in Spain. I think I wanted a healthier life that I could actually enjoy, and I have to admit that five years ago, I didn't really know how to do this. In fact, I have to admit that I'm still trying to figure it out even though I think I'm getting better at this.

I just came back from Tokyo with my partner Ronny and am still cleaning up the mess that spilled forth from our two small suitcases. The company Ronny works for closed down just before Christmas and he is unemployed now, so it's pretty unlikely we will be doing anymore traveling this year. If it hadn't been for my epicurean overly generous sister - we would have had a pretty miserable Christmas, but she made sure we were one step away from following in the footsteps of feather slinging Roman hedonists and so beyond having to take Strong Wakamoto (digestive enzymes) we were a couple of happy bunnies.

Anyway this is the start of a new year - a few years before we hit Peak Oil so I thought I'd turn over a new leaf and start some serious food blogging...or at least try to.

I've always enjoyed cooking and have done the catering for some of my friends back in Tokyo on the opening night of their art exhibits. Beyond that however, I haven't done much except make food for my own parties (and my sister's occasionally).

I think my first lessons in making 'party food' go back to my childhood when my mother used to prepare lots of finger food for her cocktail parties. I used to hang around the kitchen like a little monkey hoping to steal deep friend Wonton wrappers filled with cheese or water chestnuts and dried plums rolled up in crispy bacon. I'd watch my mom decorate the table with shallow chinaware filled with water and floating orchids. I thought that when I grew-up I'd be hosting cocktail parties too.

Anyhow I never became an expatriate in my adult life and never had to host a cocktail party so this didn't come to pass - but I still love cooking festive looking food.

At this very moment though, Ronny is still attending to the details of getting his unemployment benefits and we have a pretty empty refrigerator - so it will be a few days or next week before I can show you anything really new and I'm going to start the new year off by sharing a photograph of a sandwich cake Ronny made in 2008 and try to explain how you can make one yourself!

It's all fairly straight forward and simple so don't be shy. Plus, you can make a 'credit crunch' budget version with cheaper more readily available ingredients or really splurge and make an epicurean fantasy come true!

Here goes.



12 Slices Sandwich Bread (cut off crust)


2 Ears of Corn
Creme Fraiche
Sour Cream
1 Can Tuna or Chopped Up Smoked Salmon
Dill (finely chopped - and use as much as you wish)


1 kg Langostines
3 Lobsters
Grapes (a few)
Cocktail Tomatoes (different colors if you can get them)
Salmon Roe, Trout Roe, Lumpfish Roe, Beluga, Flying Fish Roe, etc. <---Anything you can possibly get your hands on. 200g Thinly Sliced Ham (Jamon Cocido) Lettuce (A few leaves - enough to cover the top layer of your cake) 1 Cucumber (thinly sliced) Dill (lots of it - or as much as you desire) Other things you will need:

Plastic Wrap
A tray big enough for your sandwich cake
Enough space in your refrigerator to put the cake in there overnight!

*This is just an example of what you can use and feel free to use anything you like eating or avoiding things you don't like.

The sandwich cake needs to be prepared the night before so that the ingredients (except for the decorations) have time to marry. Also keep in mind that you can upgrade the ingredients as much as you wish or is financially feasible! One person might start out by baking their own loaf of bread and another person might opt for sandwich bread that already has its crust cut off. This is all up to you.

Basic Preparations:

1. Boil the Langostines and lobsters in water with lots of fresh dill and some salt in it and then remove their shell. <----This is possibly the most labor intensive part of making this cake. 2. Roast the corn if you use fresh corn. 3. Sear the tuna steak, cool it down and make flakes if you use fresh tuna. The Basic Cake

Step 1: Assuming you already have slices of sandwich bread - make sure you cut off the crust and lay 4 of them down in a square on the tray.

Step 2: Spread Filling No. 1*

Step 3: Put another 4 slices of bread of this on top of the filling.

Step 4: Spread Filling No. 2**

Step 5: Put another 4 slices of bread on top of the filling.

Step 6: Cover the entire cake with unseasoned whipped cream using a spatula to make it look like a cake.

At this point you can put some toothpicks on top of the cake and cover it up with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator overnight - or you can decorate it if you aren't going to have enough time to decorate it the next day. This is your choice.

*Filling No.1 : A mixture of canned tuna (buy a tuna steak, sear it and make your own flakes if this is too down market for you) or chop-up smoked salmon if tuna is an issue, corn (we roasted fresh corn and used it but if you're lazy you can also used canned corn), sour cream, yogurt, creme fraiche, fresh dill, salt and pepper.

**Filling No. 2: A mixture of chopped up Langostines (boiled in dill), fresh dill, sour cream, yogurt, creme fraiche, salt and pepper.

Note: You can also use mayonnaise if you love it or don't have the confidence to make your own blend of sour cream, yogurt, creme fraiche, salt & pepper or are plain lazy. It's a free world.

Basic Decoration:

1. Line the sides of the cake with thin cucumber slices.

2. Cover the top of the cake with lettuce leaves then cover it with a layer of thinly sliced ham. This can be regular ham, Prosciutto or Jamon Iberico. Use whatever you fancy.

3. Decorate the cake and serve!