Friday, May 14, 2010

fruits of Cambodia

Queen of the fruits  - the Mangosteen


And last but not least.....King of the fruits - The Durian

so how does a King taste?, well, locals and (some) tourists say eating one is like eating creme brulee over an open sewer because the stench is quite penetrating but the taste is amazing... Overstatement of the year if you ask me... it tasted like a sweet slightly rotting onion ..

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Just came back from Panama, and as usual I'm posting the pictures first... more text will follow later - most importantly - I ate food - lots of food - and took lots of photos of food :)

so to get myself started, here is a shortlist of the highlights: 

1) Ice cream place called Granclement  - Gourmet Ice creams & sorbets, located in the colonial zone - panama city - WOW amazing ice cream !

2) Sake - interesting sushi place...sushi flambe' anyone?

3) ManoloCaracol (Panama City) - serves 11 (..or was it 12?) courses.... and they don't tell you what is on the menu - they just serve it.. sometimes you get lucky, and other times... well they had a pineapple and dried fish theme when we visited...

and finally,
4) Limoncillo, one of panama city`s new upscale restaurants (and quite expensive..) but worth every cent

Henriette's appetizer - yes it is Feta cheese with rosemary and lemon sauce - yum !     

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Oh Boy !

At the age of ten I believed that Easter was a religious celebration, to be spent with your family playing cards and listening to your uncle Vernon tell his stories from when he worked and visited places far far away.

Ok ok, so I don't actually have an uncle Vernon, but if I had I'm sure he would have had many good stories....

Anyhow, at fifteen I thought that Easter had nothing to do with family and religion - instead it was a holiday for skiing, binge-drinking, and more importantly skiing and drinking at the same time (mom, I never did this, never...). Or if you grew up in warmer places like say Spain to sunbathe and drink at the same time - trust me when I say - the spanish version is really so much nicer, easier and not to mention warmer than the Norwegian version (mom, I might have done this.. once..).

Now at thirty, I believe Easter is for spending time with your family and friends and for eating sinful amounts of chocolate and candy. (if you're religious and offended by this - please do forgive me..pretty please)

And that brings us to Easter eggs. Its the perfect thing to give your loved ones for Easter. Preferably one filled with chocolate and candy, like these.  You can buy these wonderful babies here and here, and from here.

But what if you forgot to make and/or buy an Easter egg for your loved one(s)? ... awkward 

Lucky for you boys - we girls are easy to impress. Bake her a chocolate cake shaped like an egg instead and she will instantly be smitten.. ;) (if you forgot to give an easter egg to a boy, don`t despair, he probably didnt notice anyway)

Chocolate cake egg - it surely can`t be the easiest of cakes to make - and the result may look something like this one.... Yes, true, it does look more like cow dung than an easter egg... but it doesn't matter because it's the thought that counts anyway. And it is truly the funniest and sweetest easter egg anyone has ever given me !

Easter Egg 2010

Monday, March 15, 2010

what I've been eating and photographing lately...

Salads !!

and um.. chocolate and scones.....  ok soooo in reality I'm snacking on salad between desserts..

anyhow, this blog post is not about how a girl can't live on chocolate alone (although, have anyone seriously ever tried??? hmmmm.... ) or about how the bikini season is approaching faster than you can say ibsens ripsbusker og andre buskvekster

THIS blog is about how I've been taking some sweet food photos lately...

i) salad with chicken, mango and apple - look - LOOK at those colors !!!
(made by Vicki, Helene and myself one very funny saturday evening)

ii) salad with chicken and horseradish cream
(from kolonihagen, my favorite saturday/sunday breakfast place)

Monday, February 15, 2010

One dessert to rule them all.... chocolate soufflé (cup)cakes

If there was such a dessert it would be this one !!

Recipe as usual from Deb at smittenkitchen 

Chocolate Souffle Cupcakes
170 grams bittersweet chocolate, chopped 
86 grams unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon instant coffee powder
3 eggs, separated
6 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

- I used Valrhona Guanaja 70% for the first batch but Manjari 64% for the second batch, because I read on a food blog that 70% is not the best for souffles due to lower sugar content.. however, that was not the case in this recipe.. The Guanaja batch was clearly the best one as it had a richer chocolate taste. That being said, I really am a sucker for really dark and bitter chocolate (feasting on a plate of Valrhonas 85% Abinao as we speak.. wiiii)

ooops, sorry, major chocolate distraction.. now back to recipe
- stir chocolate, butter and coffee powder in pan until melted
- beat egg yolkes and 3 tablespoons sugar in bowl until pale and thick
- add chocolate mixture and vanilla 
- beat egg whites and 3 tablespoons sugar and salt in other bowl until very white and fluffy
- fold egg whites in chocolate mixture, in 3 additions

adding melted chocolate to egg mixture...


and then carefully folding in the egg whites

- divide batter in small cupcakes, large muffin cups, round/heart shaped cake pan or other
- bake in oven at 160 C degrees (350 F) until... umm done... somewhere between 5-15 min depending on the size of your cupcake/pan

The original recipe also calls for white chocolate mint cream  (heat cream and mix with chopped white chocolate, and if you can find it - which I could not despite my desperate search in all of Oslo's gourmet stores - some mint extract for flavoring). Liked it almost better without cream though, but again I am a sucker for chocolate. Next time I think I'll make it with a hazelnut crust and layer it with two different chocolate types - one darker and one lighter.. yum !

My two batches of batter made for:
- cupcakes for the weekly Friday coffee & cake at work + some extras to bring for girls dinner in the evening...

- mother day's cake (half eaten) :)) 

oh and one very cheesy heart-shaped valentines cake... so cheesy it could in fact not be pictured on this blog ;)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

I want to live Kolonihagen

Its the cutest cafe in Oslo, Kolonihagen in Frogner. Perfect place for sunday (and every other day) morning indulgences !!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

photos from Olive oil tasting at Olivers&co.. more to come

Lunch at Coco Vika

When I was 15-16 years, back when pizzas were regarded as fancy food and tacos had just started to appear on Norwegian dinner tables (and we hadn’t even heard about café lattes… isn’t that funny?) the first Asian restaurant opened in Oslo . It was a Chinese restaurant and me and my friends were sooooo fascinated by the mix of chicken/rice/sweet chili sauce. (food that is sweet and spicy at the same time? How strange and unheard off.. )
Since then, I’ve eaten lots of Asian food and have developed a love for it (Thai/Vietnamese food in particular). I think it has to do with their yin-yang approach to food, which in so many dishes results in an amazing mix of color, flavors, and textures (call me superficial but I like food that looks pretty too…)

Yesterday I had lunch at Coco Vika (the sister restaurant of Coco Chalet - the French inspired place close to Stortinget).

Sometime back (although I don’t remember when, and my memory isn’t what it use to be so I could be wrong) Coco Vika became an Asian inspired restaurant with the slogan “we promise you a different taste to a reasonable price”.

And they were in fact reasonably priced, but the food however was err… unfortunately a bit of a disappointment :(

I ordered the Wok Noodles Thai Grilled Chicken (Fried noodles with chicken, vegetables and sweetchili)

Did not love this dish - it was bland, boring and uninspiring. Lots and lots of noodles and almost no vegetables (with the lame exception of a 4 small pieces of a carrot stick), also it was soaked in bottle-sweetchili sauce (chicken pieces were good though).

The other dish I tried was Rice Bowl Scampi (Rice with scampi, fried vegetables and spizy Szechuan garlic sauce). The scampies were very good but as with the other dish there was lots of rice but almost no vegetables… Why I wonder? Is it really that expensive to add a bit of fresh vegetables and maybe even some herbs?

OK, so I only tried to lunch menu.. perhaps the dinner menu is much better. Also, I’ve heard they make one of the best chocolate fondants in Oslo, which I didn’t have this time so I would probably go back just for that, and the service was good so as a lunch place for the business crowd in the neighborhood I guess its OK ..

Monday, January 25, 2010

making scones...

I am addicted to scones… no seriously, I think I am.

You see, scones have never really been my thing. Its been something I only crave once every blue moon. Until I met the ONE!! 

That one perfect scone that has made me dream, think and eat scones ever since (lets pretend its been roughly 4 weeks.. ) I found the perfect scone in Le Rustique, my favorite neighborhood café. This scone is dark, not to sweet and has chunky bites of walnuts and apricots. And I (oops Freudian slip should have said it..) crumbles beneath your fingers when you bite into it. I’ve been craving them constantly ever since. Sure, I’ve tried other scones, like the light and fruity cranberry scones at Kaffebrenneriet or the darker but sweeter scones at Apent Bakery. And yes they are also good, but I always come back to the ONE. Anyhow, after all that obsessing and researching about scones the time has come to make them…..

Since I wanted to make them a bit healthier I changed and merged several recipes. Now partly based on a meyer lemon and fresh cranberry scones recipe from smitten kitchen

1 1/2 tablespoons freshly grated lemon zest
2 1/2 cups dark baking flour

1/2 cup all-purpose baking flour (Now here was the first big challenge, the mixture was to fluid so I had to add this at the end to get the scones to set at the baking sheet)
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoon baking powder

6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into bits

1/2 cup dried cranberries (searched everywhere but alas fresh cranberries are out of season :( )
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 large egg
+ 1 large egg yolk

1 cup oat-milk (ok, so the original calls for heavy cream which in retrospect might have been better)

In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, butter and lemon zest. Stir cranberries and walnuts into mixture. Lightly beat egg and yolk and stir in milk. Add egg mixture to flour mixture and stir until just combined. Bake in oven at approx 200 C degrees (or 400 F degrees) for 20 min +.

The result was… eh… definitely not like the scones from Le Rustique, and Im sure they don’t come close to the original recipe from smitten kitchen either.

But (!!) they were still OK. Coarser and less sweet but with a nice sweetening taste of the cranberries. Perhaps not the scones you want to serve without any spread but with some pear butter = very yummy and they were also good with plain butter.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

At Bugges Eft

Ah first entry… where to start? Oh, I know, Ill start with a short recap of my first food adventure this week;

Friday: dinner and wine at Bugges Eft with Valerie - my foodie friend from New York.

For those of you who don’t know the place, Bugges Eft is located in Markveien in Grunerlokka. It has old furniture, deep chairs, and a very laid back atmosphere. The menu is quite basic with your usual selection of salads, sandwiches and burgers.

I ordered a salmon burger with ratatouille and Val ordered the vegetarian lentil burger.
The quality of the food was surprisingly good. The bread was dark and moist, and the vegetable ratatouille was a bit spicy.