In ancient times…..

….. the herbs would have been gathered, some dried and hung as a bouquet to mark the perpetual spring in Paradise.

Rosemary, with its pale blue flowers that come out beside the sea even in the roughest of whiter storms, would have been stuffed into lamb, or wild fennel with its strong aniseed flavor (leaves no room for the middle ground - fennel is something that most people either love or hate) would have been used for culinary or medicinal use.

Cottage cooking:

Fennel, watercress & pine nut salad

Marinating the fennel with an orange dressing gives this salad a delicious, fresh zing.

All you need:

juice from 1 small orange
3 tbsp olive oil
1 large head fennel, halved and thinly sliced
a handful watercress
50g toasted pine nuts

Do this:
In a large bowl, whisk the orange juice and oil together with a fork and season to taste. Add the fennel and toss to coat. Leave to marinate for 10 mins if you have time.

Just before serving, tip the watercress and pine nuts into the bowl and toss well to combine.


Kategorien Cottage Life / Cooking, Recipes . Skrevet af LE 26. October, 2011 kl 9:19

Would the residents in…..

….. ancient times have stored and used the bitter, dark green rocket salad? Would the juice of a lemon and a dash of olive oil, be considered then as a suitable dressing to go with this lovely green plant?

Through they did use wild basil in ancient times, today we grow it in pots at the back of the house, and with its small curly leaf (very unlike the large, quickly tiring leaves of the plant bought in the supermarket), made in to pesto sauce, it’s irresistible.

Cottage cooking:

Rocket & Basil Pesto (makes 1 jar)

All you need:
2 tbsp pine nuts
pinch of salt
1/2 clove garlic
150g rocket
100g freshly picked basil leaves
50g Parmesan, grated
300ml extra virgin olive oil

Do this:
Dry fry the pine nuts in pan until lightly toasted and golden. Pound in a pestle and mortar with salt and crushed garlic. Add the rocket and basil leaves, continuing to mash until it becomes a thick green paste (you could do this in a food processor, although purists would argue against this, preferring the subtler flavors of the bruised ingredients). Add the grated cheese and most of the olive oil until fully blended, reserving a little oil for the top. Transfer to a jar, cover with remaining oil and keep in the fridge for up to one week.

Serve simply with: al dente pasta, potatoes or ravioli….. or spoon over chicken or white fish. Try it, it’s delicious.

Kategorien Uncategorized . Skrevet af LE 23. October, 2011 kl 8:00

What better day than…..

….. October 22nd, when Gaddafis family mourns, our fighters is going home and we discusses and speculate over the strange new world we now inhabit, than to look at the plants and herbs which grows here and have lasted through man and gods, kings and conquerors, acting as prophylactics and cures, as tastes and pleasures which go back to the beginning of existence?

Some of which we found when we came here to Paradise; as the wild fig and apple tree and the lavender, which grows around us and provides that unforgettable smell unique to our Paradise.

Cottage poetry:

Purple lavender is a beautiful thing,
flowering in violet,
in winter or spring.

The leaves vary from silver to green,
it grows wild here in the North,
and of wild herbs it’s king.

Flowers are white, purple, or pink,
but only the purple,
makes you mind stop and think.

Songs and stories, have come down through time,
of the purple lavender,
in it’s inhospitable climes.

If you’re ever in Denmark, come check it out,
cause the purple lavender,
is what the North is about.

Kategorien Cottage Life / Cooking, Delightful poems . Skrevet af LE 22. October, 2011 kl 10:02

My husband,

….. as so often, restores the sense of balance needed in this distressing situation, remanding us that the last time the water masses came down, in earlier spring, it took another gigantic storm to restore the beach to beauty.

Do you remember, he said, “how soft, glistening dunes filled in the ravaged riverbed and formed the new estuary overnight”.

“The difference is,” he agreed, as Molly remarks; that this has never happened before at this time of year, “that we, like everyone else in the world, have to learn to live in a fast-changing climate, violent and unpredictable”.

Kategorien Cottage Life / Cooking . Skrevet af LE 18. October, 2011 kl 5:32

Visiting Paradise,

….. when summer is on the way out, produces some surprises, not all of them pleasant.

We’d heard before leaving Copenhagen, that all the rain (last monday) hade made the water that fills the riverbed once again come rushing down to the sea. But still it was a chock, when we tumbled down the steps earlier today, and the extent of damage caused by the water was reveled to us.

The beach looks as if it has been bitten and spat out, chewed between the rocks and water masses, and now lots of sharp stones is making it hard to attain the shore several places.

The sheer force and speed of the water masses has carved out banks of an ugly yellowish color, against which a succession of abandoned rowing-boats and broken parasols lay drunkenly on the beach.

Kategorien Cottage Life / Cooking . Skrevet af LE 15. October, 2011 kl 16:44