Making Jam

Our blackberry bush is loaded with fruit. Now I love blackberries, but it looked like I had to eat nothing but blackberries for weeks. So I decided to make jam. I had no idea it was this easy. And the smell is amazing. The whole house smells like jam. There’s a ton of fruit still on the bush, so I think I’ll make more jam later this week.

My blackberries are really sweet, so I didn’t use a lot of sugar. About half of the weight of the fruit. When I tasted it it was delicious. I can’t wait til we can try it!

Memories of Holidays Past

When I was a child, Boxing day, or the second Christmas day, as it is known in The Netherlands, was spend at my grandparents house. My grandfather celebrated his birthday on December 26 and the whole family gathered around coffeetime to celebrate.

I remember clearly everyone bringing food and drinks, to put less strain on my grandparents. We started with coffee and cake, quicly turning into a lager for my dad and my uncle. Which my grnadfather loathed. He was teetotal. I don’t really know if he simply disliked alcohol (like me) or if he disliked the things alcohol does to you.

My uncle always cooked dinner, every year the exact same thing. I think my brother and I were to blame for this. We absolutely loved endives with ham and cheese.


recipe for two


  • 750 gr of endives
  • 10 slices of ham
  • 150 gr of grated cheese
  • salt and pepper


Chop the endives in quarters and remove the heart. Cook the endives for 10 minutes. Drain it off. Roll the endives into the slices of ham and place them in an oven dish. Remove excess liquid with a clean towel or kitchen paper. Put the grated cheese on top and season with salt and pepper. Bake in a hot oven (225 °C) for 20 minutes.



This post is written for the Daily Post.

Thanks to Sunday Driver for the photo.


Celebrity Chefs and Cooking Shows

Earlier today I read Melanie’s post here. I totally agree with her on the fact that I can watch cooking shows all day. I love them. But I think they make it all seem a bit too easy. I can never get anything to look like they do. Plus it always takes me way longer than the celebrity chefs.
Of course this is probably because it’s their job. If they would do my job they’d take ages too…

What I learned from cooking shows:

  • I really need a bigger stove. Just 4 burners is a bit tight with most recipes.
  • I need more pots and pans.
  • I need generally more workspace.
  • I need a chef to do my cooking! 😛
  • I need a dishwasher.

Lettuce and strawberries

Chefs always make everything seem so easy. So quick, so simple. Yet it’s almost never as simple as they make it look.

That’s one of the reasons I love Nigel Slater. His Simple Cooking show really is simple. The recipes are usually made with only one pan, sometimes two. And in his Dish of the Day show you can see how you could use up the left overs. My left overs usually end up in the garbage can…

So, I’m sorry Melanie, for not voting in your poll, but my favourite chef isn’t on there.

Filled Eggs

This recipe I got from my stepmom and everyone loves my filled eggs. So I thought I’d post it here.


  • As many eggs as you like
  • mayonnaise
  • Masala curry
  • Pepper


Boil the eggs and let them cool down until they’re completely cold.
Remove the shell and half the eggs.
Scoop the yolk out with a teaspoon. You can try squeezing the egg, but it doesn’t work every time.
Put the yolks on a bowl and mush them with a fork.
Mix the mushed yolks with the mayonnaise and the Masala curry. Use as much as you like (I use about 200 ml of mayonnaise and 2 tablespoons of curry for 14 (whole) eggs).
Put in some pepper.
Put the mixture into a piping bag and start filling the eggs. You can make a nice dollop on top. Sprinkle some paprika powder or chives on top just before serving.

How much of the ingredients you need is hard to say as you can make them how you like. I make the mixture just a tad on the hot side, as the egg white will neutralise the taste a bit. You can make the eggs a day ahead of your party.


Snert is the dutch word for pea soup. It’s a wholesome meal that’s very tasty. I make lots of it every winter and wanted to share my family recipe. This might be a bit different from other recipes, but it’s the way I’ve made it for many years. Make sure you’ve got a large pan, as this recipe is enough for 10 to 12 liters!


  • 4 L water
  • 750 Gr split peas
  • 10 stock cubes
  • 4 onions
  • 4 carrots
  • 4 big potatoes
  • 1 celeriac
  • ½ a head of celery
  • 750 Gr pork meat (with or without the bone, just what you prefer)
  • 2 rookworsten
  • 250 Gr bacon, in cubes
  • few bay leaves


Bring the water to the boil. Put in the 10 stock cubes and the split peas. Boil it over a low heat for 2 hours.
Chop the vegetables and the meat into cubes. Pour in the vegetables and the bay leaves. Let it boil for another hour. Stir every now and then.
Put the meat (except the rookworst) in and let i boil for another hour. Put in the rookworst and let it boil for 10 minutes.
That’s it, your snert is done.



Krintsjebrij is a Frisian dessert that both Jay and I love. Originally the recipe is a bit different, but I’ve made my own version of it.


  • 2 liters of grape juice
  • 150 gr pearled barley
  • 100 gr raisins
  • 100 gr currants


Put the grape juice on the stove until it boils. Turn the heat low and add the pearled barley, the raisins and the currants. Turn it down to low and let it simmer for 45 minutes until pearled barley is done. Serve hot or cold.


Vegetarians Nightmare Pizza

I thought I’d share my recipe for my infamous pizza. It’s really easy and fun to make and it’s the most delicious pizza. It’s better then those horrible store-bought frozen pizzas. This will be enough for two to three people.

First the dough:

  • 200 gr of flower (not self rising flower)
  • 125 ml of water
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 5 gr bakingpowder
  • 5 gr herbamare seasoning

Put the flower into a mixing bowl or foodprocessor. Add the olive oil, the bakingpowder, the seasoning and half of the water. Mix it gently and add water just bits at a time. When the dough forms a nice ball that’s not too sticky it’s done. Don’t worry if you didn’t add all the water. If the dough is a bit sticky, add a bit more flower.

When the weather’s nice outside I place the dough in a glass bowl, with cling film over the top, on the grass in the sun for around 45 minutes. When it’s cold or shady I’ll preheat the oven at 90° Celsius. Place the glass bowl in the oven (aluminium foil on top, as I have no idea if cling film can go in the oven) and heat it for 3 minutes. Turn off the oven and let the dough rest for 20 minutes. Now it’s ready for the next stage.

Take the tray you want to use for your pizza. I use a huge round earthenware tray for this (∅ 40 cm). Rub it with olive oil (or butter). Roll the risen dough really flat and place it in the tray. Push the dough into the corners so it rises up a bit around the rim. It now needs to rise again. And again, there are two ways. Either place it outside in a see-through bin liner for 45 minutes or preheat the oven again on 90° Celsius and put it in (with aluminium foil) for 3 minutes. Turn the oven off and let it rest for another 20 minutes.

Your dough is now ready.


In the time your dough is rising you can get all the other ingredients ready. You need:

  • 700 gr chickenbreast in cubes
  • 10 gr of piripiri seasoning
  • Pizza sauce
  • 6 slices of bacon
  • 6 slices of ham
  • 6 slices of salami
  • grated cheese
  • pineapple pieces
  • Little bit of olive oil

First make a paste of the olive oil and the pirpiri seasoning. Put in the chickenbreast cubes and leave it for at least 2 hours. If your chicken is still frozen, make sure you’ll leave it to marinade even longer. (tip: I slice the chicken into cubes when it’s still half frozen. This way it’s much easier to slice. But you need a VERY sharp knife to do this!) Fry them til there just about done.

Put the pizza sauce onto the waiting dough. Put as much on it as you like. Then slice the bacon, ham and salami in half and place them on the pizza. Put the fried chicken over the top and make sure to distribute it evenly around the whole pizza. Put the grated cheese over the top and place the pineapple  on the grated cheese. Again, put as much on it as you like.

Put the whole thing into a pre0heated oven on 175° Celsius for 30 minutes. Enjoy your Vegetarians Nightmare!


Note: I’m not responsible for any over-eating, nor am I responsible for never wanting another pizza again! 😉

Butcher’s Goulash

Yesterday I cooked up my infamous goulash and I posted a pic on Twitter. Today I figured I’d post the recipe for those that are interested in how to make this dish. Note that this isn’t the original recipe, but one I learned when I worked in a butchery, hence the name. This recipe serves 4 people.


  • 800 grams of pork meat; use what you like, but I love to use pork shoulder for this, as that’s very tender when cooked for quite some time.
  • 3 bell peppers; I tend to use one red, one yellow and one green to get a bit of colour in.
  • 2 big onions.
  • 2 tomatoes
  • chili seasoning mix; in the Netherlands it’s called “stroganoff seasoning” but it’s hard to come by.
  • Butter


  • Cut the meat in cubes; about half an inch each.
  • Mix the meat with the seasoning and let it rest for at least 4 hours; the longer the better. I usually season the meat the day before.
  • Put a large deep pan on the stove; I like to use a casserole pan or dutch oven for this, but a deep frying pan with a lid will do just fine.
  • Put the butter in the pan and let it melt til it’s just turning golden.
  • Put the meat into the pan and stir it regularly til it’s brown on all sides.
  • Chop the onion and the bell peppers and place them in a bowl to one side. Do the same with the tomatoes.
  • Put the lid on the pan and stir every 5 minutes or so for the next hour.
  • Then, put in the onion and bell peppers; depending on how you like them you can do this earlier or later. Stir it every once in a while for the next 1 to 2 hours.
  • Half an hour before finishing the dish, put in the tomatoes.
  • Again, keep stirring every few minutes.

If you’re lucky, you won’t have to put in extra stock or anything. If it looks too dry and it’s sticking to the pan, put in a bit of stock. If it’s too watery, you can thicken it with some flour or cornstarch. Note that cornstarch can change the flavour a bit.

Serve with cooked potatoes or, as I do, with rice and have a great meal!

Please tell me if you liked this recipe, or if you need any help. I’d be happy to give you some advice, but note that I’m not the best cook in the world…