Aug 20, 2010

kale soup

last week i saw something interesting in the veggie isle and decided to take a closer look, the package said "kale". well, it said lehtikaali but that is kale in finnish. i think that was the first time i ever saw any kale for sale in finland, or any other country for that matter.

i knew kale is super good for you, i bought a package not quite sure how i would cook it

i studied several cookbooks to figure out how to prepare the kale. they all said to trim the hardest part of stem off

i minced the leaves, very roughly and cooked them in little water for 10 mins to wilt them, then removed and drained it

used one onion, minced quite fine

i used herbamare bullion powder, thyme, butter and all purpose flour

beurre manie, butter and flour mixed together for thickening the soup

sauteeing the onions

i thought cream cheese with sun-dried tomatoes would be a nice addition and added one heaping tbsp. after adding the cream cheese i took out my immersion blender (and remembered to cover part of kettle with towel in order not to spray the walls) and pureed the soup. i didn't puree it too fine, as i wanted to leave some bite to it

i liked the soup, though it tasted very "healthy"...certain someone took some but then suddenly decided that he wasn't hungry after all...i guess i won't be making this soup at the shack any time soon...however, i will buy some more to try other recipes with it

crafty me II

every car i've ever owned has had towels as seat all started with my -72 bright yellow beetle. the seats were in horrible condition, i got bright blue towels to cover them up. i also used the same towels in my next beetle, a -67 black beauty in which my feet got when driving in rainy weather, but other than that, i loved that car.

then i had a -86 vw golf (see a pattern here?) it also had some slight water issues...front passenger got his/her feet wet when it was raining, this really started to bug me. then i had another vw, a -97 polo. it was fairly desent car, except the locks would keep freezing in the winter (and yes, i did try every trick and then some to prevent it). it was quite emrassasing to enter the car via tailgate. for the polo i another set of blue towels.

now i drive a -03 vw golf station wagon (if they are called that?) for it i got these bright colored towels from ikea years ago, not because the seats were messy but to protect them from getting that way.

i first just poked holes in the towels where the head rest dovels where, but soon discovered that the fabric started tearing...

i then got some grommets and took out my sewing machine. i first ironed the buckram onto the towel, then reinformced it by stitching all over it with the machine, then placed the grommets on

the right side, reinforced but the stitches barely noticeable

i have these only on the front seats. as these are attached only on the top, the side airbags will be able to function if needed

might have to get these for the back seat as well, if there were messy kids around...i have a bad habit of eating while driving, the towel is so much easier to wash the seat itself

Aug 18, 2010

juice de cassis

not as fancy as the title sounds...plain old black currant juice made with a steamer. my late grandmother bought me this juicer/steamer, i bet most homes in finland will have one, if not in use, at least gathering dust in the basement.

when i was making juice last year i noticed that the hob couldn't manage boiling the tall kettle contraption for hours, that's why i bought a separate hotplate for the task

washed bottles, sugar, atamon (preservative) and black currants (25 kgs)

the berries were a bit dusty, they needed a quick wash first

the base kettle where the boiling water makes steam that...

...that is consentrated in this funnel type part with an opening for...

...plastic hose that takes the steamed juice to another kettle

this part is then filled with berries and placed on top the funnel-type part

oop, i only washed the berries here...

it is very important to clean and disinfect the bottle well before pouring in the juice

i add atamon (sodium benzoate and benzoic acid) into the water where i dip the bottles. i keep this water boiling while...

i bring the steamed juice (with added sugar) to a boil...

these thongs have a good grip on the hot bottles

a funnel make this part a lot neater (this juice is particularly hard to remove from carpet...)

filling the bottles almost to the top

this year i got 16 litres of juice from the 25 kg of berries

i almost went and bought another 10 kg of currants but we will run out of storage. the juice needs to be refridgereted, or at least in a very cool place, and this fridge needs to hold my apple sauce as well