Month: February 2017

Peppa travels

Peppa travels

It is day 3 of my vacation and I am having the best time here in Sweden. It really is my favorite place in Europe. It's late at night, and I am laying on the couch trying to give my tired feet some rest. I was really active, the last

couple of days were packed with long walks through the city, and it's outskirts. There is so much to see. Today I went to check out Södertälje, a little village about 45 minutes from Stockholm. This city has quite a bit of history. There is an old settlement from the 1800s which you can visit, if you want to know how people lived in Sweden during the old days.

It is located on a hill called 'Torekällberget'. It only takes about 20 minutes to get there. Once I got up there, I really felt like I traveled back in time, especially after seeing the gorgeous windmill in the midst of it. Doesn't it look stunning? 

After exploring the old settlement I went back to Stockholm and got ready for a fun night out. I went to the most amazing restaurant with an attached bar called Orangeriet, which you can see in the two pictures here. It impresses with fantastic

interior design, and a really delicious menu. I love that they have two cozy fireplaces that people can gather around. I went there two nights in a row because I enjoyed it so much. Tomorrow I will go see the Vasa Museum. Afterwards, I will again go on a long walk through the cozy little suburbs. I still need to figure out, which bar to visit in the evening. 

But there are plenty of great ones to choose from. What a fun trip you guys! I really wish I could stay here longer, but in less than a week I have to go back to Germany. I feel so at home here. I really consider coming here once a year from now on.

Walnut bread

Walnut bread

Yay, I am finally in Sweden. It is absolutely beautiful here, and just as I hoped it's white

and snowy. I wasn't sure, if I'd experience snow this time, since it's almost March. But my little wish for a white, and cozy Stockholm was granted. Today I went to see Gamla Stan, the historic part of Stockholm. Afterwards, I went on a  long walk through one of the cute,  idyllic suburban neighborhoods which showcase the most adorable, colorful, wooden houses.

Seeing these colors made me so happy. I really love the cozy vibe that these neighborhoods have to them. Tonight I will dive into Stockholm's fantastic night life. Man, this vacation really is off to a great start. But aside from telling you about my fun trip I really want to share this recipe for my homemade whole wheat rosemary walnut bread with you.

It' so easy to make. I know, making bread from scratch comes off as very time intense, and complicated but the truth is it isn't difficult at all. It's also a great gift idea. If you are a little short on money, and can't spend a fortune on gifts at the moment, then two loafs of warm, homemade bread are a wonderful way of showing a loved one you care.

You'll also love the delicious scent that lingers in the air while it bakes in the oven. One really doesn't need a fancy bread machine or anything of that sort to make a simple, delicious, rustic bread like this. The old fashioned way works just fine. Wanna know how it's done? Then put your apron on, and get ready for some baking magic:-) Here's the recipe:

500 g (17,6 oz) whole wheat flour

10 g (0,35 oz) fresh yeast

360 ml (12,81 oz) lukewarm water

1 ½ tsp salt

1/8 tsp sugar

1 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary

60 g (2,12 oz) coarsely chopped walnuts

Add salt, flour, and sugar to a bowl. Mix, and set aside. Meanwhile, crumble the yeast into a separate bowl that contains lukewarm water. Stir until the yeast has completely dissolved. Now add this mixture to the flour, sugar, and salt. Knead into a sturdy dough. About 4 minutes. Then add the rosemary, and knead further until evenly combined.

Add the chopped walnuts, and knead again until they're evenly distributed. Place the dough into a bowl, cover it with aluminum foil, and let it rest in the fridge overnight. Preheat oven to 190 degrees Celsius (375 degrees Fahrenheit). If you are NOT using a convection oven raise the temp about 20 degrees Celsius (70 degrees Fahrenheit).

Once the temperature is reached take the dough out of the fridge, and divide it into 2 or 3 pieces. Now flatten each piece, and fold it over several times, so that air gets incorporated. Once you've done that a couple of times, roll each piece into a rope, and place them on parchment paper. With a sharp knife, carve 3 superficial lines into each of them (e.g. picture).

Then dust them with a little bit of flour, and place them in the oven. Before you close the oven splash 1/3 cup of water onto the bottom of the oven to create steam. That will lead to a nice, and crisp crust. Close the oven immediately, and bake your breads until they're slightly golden in color. That's it guys! Tip: Eat this bread with salted butter. Yuuummm.

 

Pasta girl

Pasta girl

Right now I am on the train to Stockholm, and I am beyond excited about the beautiful Scandinavian winter vacation that lies ahead of me. I really hope for snow, because I haven't been to a white, magical winter wonderland

in years. I am also really looking forward to all the amazing Swedish pastries that I am about to eat in Stockholm. My favorite baked goodies are ''Kanelbullar'', little Swedish cinnamon rolls that are to die for. I've got about 10 more hours ahead of me until I can put one (I am such a liar, one will never do) of these delicious calorie bombs in my mouth.

This train ride gives me some time to write my next blog post. It's all about pasta, because I am a true pasta girl at heart. I have to admit there are days when I even have pasta for breakfast. Grossed out? Well, I feel no shame you guys. Pasta for president! One thing's for sure, Fusilli covered in cheese-sauce would rock compared to a certain, orange someone:-)

I love spicy food, but my tummy isn't always up for it. However, that day it for sure was. I almost always choose whole wheat pasta instead of the regular kind, since it has fiber, and other stuff, that according to mamas around the world,  is supposed to be good for you. Well, and if we learned one thing, it's that mamas are always right.

The sauce I made was rich, and full of garlic, cheese, white onions and sour cream. To lighten it up, I added chilli pepper, and freshly squeezed lemon juice. This was just the right treat for a hungry girl. In case your hungry tummy also requires taking some action, here's the recipe:

2 cups fusilli noodles

½ cup onions, chopped

1 Tbsp oil (neutral taste)

1 cup sour cream (10 % fat)

½ cup grated, flavorful cheese

½ fresh chilli pepper(or more), chopped

Black pepper, to taste

Salt, to taste

Cook the noodles according to the label's instructions. Add the onions to a pan with cold oil . Then set the heat to medium, and sweat the onions. Do not let them turn brown, they should remain pale. After about 2 minutes, add the remaining ingredients. Let the sauce simmer on medium heat for about 5 minutes.  Then  add the noodles to the sauce. All done:-)

Love, Peppa.

 

The Perfect Hot Chocolate

The Perfect Hot Chocolate

Today is a typical cold, and grey winter day. So after looking outside my window I really don’t feel like leaving the house. I just want to snuggle up in my warm bed, while watching my favorite tv show with a cup of hot cocoa

and lots of whipped cream . I of course was NOT watching the Bachelor in a binge. I watch the most exquisite, high quality tv shows with lots of educational value only. Ummm, well… Maybe I watched a little. Just one episode, I swear. And maybe another one. Okay I watched all 7 Bachelor episodes of this season in one day. I just can’t help it.

To my poor boyfriend's disappointment, I really don’t have cool or intellectual tv taste whatsoever. I was so proud of my appropriate self when I broke up with reality shows a couple of months ago, and started to watch Downton Abbey, and The Night Manager instead. However this innocent little love affair with superior quality tv only lasted briefly.

I guess it’s time to admit that I officially relapsed, and got back into my old long term relationship with girly reality tv… Anyway, on days like today, when I feel like I need a little comfort, I turn right to hot chocolate. It gets me to my happy place. I like mine really dark, and chocolaty with plenty of whipped cream. Here’s the recipe for instant cocoa happiness:

270 ml boiling water

3 Tbsp (18 g) unsweetened dark cocoa powder

3 ½ (45 g) Tbsp sugar

Splash of heavy cream

Lots of homemade whipped cream on top

Combine sugar, and cocoa powder in a coffee mug. Then add the boiling water, and stir well until everything has dissolved. Add a splash of heavy cream. Once that's done whip the cream to stiff peak. Add a pinch of powdered sugar to it if you like. Now add the whipped cream on top. Voila, all done.

Now I have to get back to important business, meaning I want to know who Nick Viall chooses to be his lovely wife. Have a great day guys, and thanks so much for reading. Oh, and before I forget, these are the mugs I used in the cute cafe I owned once . I now use them at home, and love them dearly.

Love, Peppa.

When in France

When in France

I really need a change of scenery once in a while, and traveling helps with that. It brings me such joy to see all this beauty our world has to offer. I am sure most of you share these feelings. A few

weeks ago, I was really lucky, and got invited to travel to France with my boyfriend. I happily accepted this generous offer. The most adorable city awaited me: Strasbourg. It is one of the coziest cities I have ever been to, and it's just the right place for a romantic, little weekend getaway. One thing you'll notice right away, is this city's beautiful architecture.

When you stroll around the cute little streets, you can’t help but feel like you are in the middle of a perfect French fairy tale. And guys, let me tell you about the food. It is sooo good! Comfort food at its best! There are lots of rustic, old fashioned wine bars called ‘’winstub’’ as well as a wonderful variety of fine dining restaurants.

No matter if you are a lover of haute cuisine or if you like it rustic, and down to earth you will find the perfect little restaurant that suits your needs. Here are two places I recommend. The first one is called ‘’Perles de Saveurs’’. This restaurant created the most delicious fine dining experience for me, and my man without being snobbish or overly pricy.

They served me the best fish I ever had, alongside dreamy truffle mashed potatoes, and perfectly steamed veggies. The other place I really love is ‘’Chez Tante Liesel’’. It is a really rustic, cozy, little place that offers super yummy down to earth comfort food. It is hard to get a spot there, so making a reservation quite some time in advance is a must.

Oh, and don’t get me started on the amazing bakeries. They are a dream come true for every sweet tooth. While exploring the city, I stumbled upon the cutest, tiny street ever: Rue du Chaudron. It’s the one you see in the picture: Doesn’t this ancient beauty look like it belongs straight into a fairy tale? I really loved this trip so much.

If you enjoy staying at unique, and intimite boutique hotels, I truly recommend this charming little hotel I stayed at: ‘’Le Bouclier D’or’’. It is absolutely adorable. I can’t wait for the next time I return to this magical French city. It has really stolen my heart. Vive la France! Thanks for reading, and have a good night guys!

Love, Peppa.

Fish Burgers

Fish Burgers

Even though I am a vegetarian, once in a while I like to eat fish. As a kid I hated fish but

as with arugula, blue cheese, and red wine, the older I got the more I started to appreciate these things. Now that I am a grown up, all of these items are cherished ingredients I love to use on a regular basis. As a kid, I also told my parents once I am a grown up I will do everything differently, and that MY kids would be allowed to watch as much TV as they want (especially Baywatch!), eat sweets all day long, and don’t have to go to school - EVER.

Well, today I can see what a silly, little Peppa I was. Funny how things change. But back to fish. The other day I missed the U.S. so much, and wanted to cook something that reminded me of my life there. So, I decided to make salmon burgers. I remember how my uncle Bill made the most delicious salmon burgers for a family barbecue in his magical, happy, little garden in Oregon many years ago. He was so sweet to me when I was little, and needed someone who was on my side.

He never yelled at me, and not once was he impatient, even though at times I was a wild, stubborn, annoying little nugget. So when I recreated these delicious salmon burgers at home, I immediately felt closer to the other side of the pond. I got all the necessary ingredients at my local supermarket. I was quite surprised to see how easily salmon burgers are made.

And hey, easy is exactly what we all need after a long day at work, right? I ate them alongside a yummy black, and white bean salad drizzled with some honey-mustard dressing. It was so good, and felt like a well balanced dinner. The special trick with these salmon burgers is frying them in coconut oil. That makes them irresistible. Here's the recipe:

1 ½ cups cooked salmon, chunky

1/3 cup crisp bread crumbs

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard               

4 tablespoons mayo

¾  egg, beaten

¼ cup parsley, chopped finely

¼ cup green onions, chopped

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ tsp salt

½ teaspoon worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary

pinch ground, dried sage

¼ cup rolled oats

5-6 Tbsp coconut oil

Add all the ingredients to a bowl, except the olive oil, and the salmon. Using your hands, mix this mush well. Now add the salmon chunks, and mix until they're evenly incorporated. Then shape burger patties. Add coconut oil to a pan (0,5 cm or 1,5 inches high), and set the heat to medium. Once the oil is hot, put the burger patties in. Fry them for about 4 minutes on each side. Don't overcook them, or they'll get dry. However undercooking them is also not advised due to the raw eggs. 

Love, Peppa.

Strawberry Bircher Müsli

Strawberry Bircher Müsli

Good morning early birds, how about starting this beautiful day with some delicious strawberry bircher? I remember the first time I ate bircher müsli. I was about 15, and visited my brother in Berlin. He lived right around the corner

of this great coffee shop called Caras. They always offered a wonderful selection of breakfast items - bircher müsli being one of them. After the first spoon, I knew it was love at first bite:-)

The nice thing about this dish is that it's both yummy, and healthy. It has been invented in the early 1900's by Mr Bircher, a Swiss doctor, who wanted to help improve people's eating habits.

So thanks to him, it became a well known, and dearly cherished breakfast goodie in Switzerland, and Germany. I wanted to add some happy colors to it, so I created this pretty strawberry version. Here's the recipe.

1 ¾ cups strawberries

1 cup yoghurt

2 Tbsp honey

1 apple, small dice

1 cup oats (soft kind)

1 Tbsp raisins (optional)

For garnish (optional):

3 Tbsp honey nuts*

Blackberries & strawberries

For the honey nuts:

½ cup walnuts (chopped coarsely)

2 Tbsp honey or to taste

Pinch of cinnamon

Add strawberries, yoghurt, and 2 Tbsp honey to a blender. Mix until smooth, and creamy. Then pour the mixture into a bowl. Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl, stir briefly.

Now prepare the honey nuts. To do this, combine all the necessary ingredients in a bowl. Place the nuts into your microwave until they're nicely caramelized.

Make sure to use a microwave proof dish. Don't keep them in too long since they burn easily. Mine took about 40 seconds to caramelize. I hope you enjoy this dish just as much as I do. 

Love, Peppa.

Pumpkin ravioli

pumpkin ravioli

As I already mentioned in one of my last posts, living in Italy for half a year really 

made me appreciate Italian food so much. I never get tired of it. I could eat it every day, and still get a kick out of it each time. So when my tummy requested some Italian comfort food the other day, I decided to make pumpkin ravioli. They were accompanied by a buttery sage sauce . I made everything from scratch. I used whole wheat flour instead of plain white flour.

Topped off with some roasted hazelnuts this was the most satisfying dinner I could think of. It was the first time since culinary school that I made ravioli from scratch. This is a bit of a time consuming dish but it's really worth the time. It's also a great choice when hosting guests since homemade pasta always impress everyone, and you can prepare them in advance.

Even the most picky eater, and we all know at least one or two of these little stinkers, will be pleased, and won't have anything to complain about:-) But be prepared, this recipe will keep you busy for a few hours. It's not complicated, just very time intense. Here's the recipe, if you want to cook this elaborate meal at home:

For the dough:

370 g (13, 1 oz) whole wheat flour

1 ½ tsp salt

3 eggs

3 Tbsp olive oil

3 Tbsp water

 For the filling:

1 big white onion, chopped finely

2 Tbsp butter

1 clove garlic, minzed

1 tsp rosemary, chopped finely

1 small hokkaido pumpkin, cooked & pitted

½ cup grated parmesan

½ cup ricotta cheese

Salt, to taste

½ tsp white wine or to taste

For the sauce:

Butter

Large, fresh sage leaves, chopped coarsely

Roasted hazelnuts, halved

Salt, pinch

First, roast the hazelnuts in a pan without the addition of oil. Then set them aside. Now prepare the filling by cutting your pumpkin in half. Place the unpeeled halves in boiling water, and cook them till they're soft. Once that's done, remove the seeds, and cut the halves into chunks. Let them cool down a bit, and set them aside.

Now add butter, onions, rosemary and garlic to a cold pan. Then set the heat to medium, and sweat them for about 3-5 minutes. Do not let the onions, and garlic turn brown, they should remain pale. Then add this mixture to a food processor. Add the pumpkin, ricotta, wine, parmesan and salt as well.

Mix until everything is smooth, and creamy. Then set the mixture aside. It is now time to prepare your dough. Add all the ingredients, and mix them with an electric mixer using the dough hooks. Once a dough has formed, continue kneading it with your hands about 4 more minutes. Now place the dough into your pasta machine.

Flatten the dough. It should be almost paper-thin. Not too thin though, otherwise your ravioli will burst while cooking. In case you do not have a pasta machine, you can use a rolling pin, and flatten it the old fashioned way. Let me tell you, doing it the old fashioned way is a real work out. Once flattened, cut the dough into little squares.

The size is up to you. However, do not make them too small. Also don't throw away the remaining dough scraps. You can cook them, and voila, you have fresh noodles which you can use for a different dish or you can freeze them. Now place about a tsp of the filling (this amount depends on how big your squares are) into the middle of your squares.

Only use half of your squares for this. Brush the edges of the filled squares with water, and place the remaining naked squares on top. Close them tightly by using a fork, and press the top edges onto the bottom edges. Make sure you do this well, otherwise the filling will leak out when you cook your raviolis.

Now place your beautiful raviolis into simmering water. I cooked mine about 9 minutes but this varies. Make sure they are cooked through. Drain them, and add them to the sauce. That's it, you're done. Enjoy this meal, you really earned it:-)

Love, Peppa.

 

 

Trip Trip Hooray!

Trip Trip Hooray!

Yay, I am so excited I finally bought my ticket to Sweden. In 2 weeks I will be traveling to Stockholm. I love taking the train through Europe, it's so fun seeing how the landscape changes the further

you go. This world has so many beautiful places to offer, and Scandinavia for sure is one of them. I haven't been to Sweden since the time I lived there. This was over 4 years ago. I wanted to go back for the longest time but traveling was not possible during the time I owned my cafe. That was really frustrating, and one of the reasons why I was happy to close my store.

I am really glad that I am finally free to see the world again. Stockholm has so much to offer. In the suburbs you have idyllic Scandinavian wooden houses surrounded by beautiful nature, and in the city you have a great variety of well designed bars, and restaurants. So this city offers you both, some quiet moments to relax as well as an exciting night life.

Stockholm is one of the most expensive cites in Europe, so Airbnb is a great way of making my trip affordable. Plus, I have a kitchen, and more space than the space I would get in a hotel room. I am counting the days until my vacay starts! I'll keep you posted once I am there, so you won't miss out on fun, exciting travel tips.  Have a great day guys!

Love, Peppa.

Grama’s Lemonade

Grandma’s Lemonade

When I was little, I spent almost every summer at my grandparent's place in Oregon. These summers were magical. It was always super hot, and nature was glowing. My siblings, me, and my two cousins loved to play in my

grandparent's pool for hours until we were exhausted, and ready for some ice cold lemonade. My grandma always kept a huge mason jar filled with delicious homemade lemonade her fridge. When we stormed into the house, she always handed us these super cool, colorful cups which we then filled with refreshing lemonade. Oh, what a treat that was.

How I miss my grandparents, and these sunny summers with them.I never got to ask her for the recipe. I tried to recreate it on my own. I failed at first, and was so disappointed. But I wasn't giving up that easily. So I tried, and tried, and finally I hit the ball out of the park. There it was, the exact same taste which brought me right back into my grandma's kitchen.

This amazing cold refreshment only exists of 3 simple ingredients. Sometimes keeping it simple is just what it takes. I am sure a lot of you also have a soft spot for homemade lemonade.  So here's what you need:

7 cups water

1 ½ cups FRESH lemon juice 

2 cups powdered sugar

Stir the powdered sugar into the water until it has FULLY dissolved. This will take a couple of minutes. Then add the lemon juice,  and stir again. Place the lemonade in the fridge, and chill for ½ hour. Done! Enjoy this special treat!

Berry Jar Cakes

Berry Jar Cakes

Today I had to think of the cake my mom makes each year for my birthday. She knows how happy she makes her little nugget with sweets. My birthday isn't until June but today I really craved birthday cake. So I took out my apron

and got busy. Instead of making her strawberry shortcake the traditional way, I felt like making a raspberry version. I also wanted to fill it into jars. What fun! I think this is one of the prettiest desserts I have ever made. And it's so tasty. I love that this dessert doesn't feel heavy, and allows for a second helping without leaving you too full afterwards.

This dessert is perfect for hosting a party since it is a real people pleaser, and looks so cute. This recipe is from one of my moms old cookbooks. So you can use pretty much any strawberry shortcake recipe. The only adaption you have to make is putting the cake into pretty, little jars.

Love, Peppa

Tortilla Chips

Tortilla Chips

I love Mexican food. Unconditionally! Ever since I moved back to Germany, it

has been one disappointment after another when trying to find a truly authentic Mexican restaurant. I've been surrounded by so many great Mexican restaurants when I lived at the Mexican border in San Diego. So instead of waiting until one day in the far future it starts raining fabulous Mexican restaurants from German skies, I took matters into my own hands.

So I decided to teach myself how to make great Mexican comfort food. It's become quite easy to get the necessary ingredients in well organized German supermarkets. A couple of years ago that was nearly impossible. Recently I tried to make my own homemade tortilla chips. They turned out so well! I ate them the traditional way alongside guacamole and spicy salsa.

It was a feast. I made an extra big amount, so that I could have more of this yummy soul fuel the next day. Making your own tortilla chips is so easy, and absolutely worth the time. Since I only had whole wheat flour in the house, I decided to make them with regular flour instead of corn flour. Turns out, I like them even better that way. Here's the recipe:

2 cups whole wheat flour

½ tsp salt

1 Tbsp butter

1 tsp baking powder

A bit less than 1 cup water

Canola oil for frying

Combine the dry ingredients. Then add butter chunks, and mix until the flour turns slightly crumbly. Now add the water. Using your hands, knead until a nice dough has developed. Roll the dough out with the help of a rolling pin. The thinner, the better.

Then cut little triangles out of the dough, and add them to the hot oil. Don't add them too early, and don't add too many at once, since this results in soggy tortillas. Remove them once they're golden brown, and place them on a wire rack. That's it!

Love, Peppa.

Veggie Quiche

Veggie Quiche

As a vegetarian I find it hard to find a great quiche out there that doesn't include meat. The only great one I had outside of France, that was made without meat, was in Berlin. It was a dream come true. In fact, it was so good

that my boyfriend, and I still talk about it 2 years later. But since Berlin is a long way from here, I had to come up with my own version.  It wasn't easy. I didn't want it to be too eggy or too bland. I wanted it to taste just like the other one I had. So after a few attempts I finally nailed it. The quiche turned out great. The kind of cheese one uses plays a major role.

You can't use just any kind. The french chef who taught me at culinary school, and who was not easy to please, would have been delighted with the outcome. I also made sure the crust turned out perfectly flaky. I used  pea flour instead of plain white flour for nutritional value. This also makes it gluten free. If you'd like to give it a try, here is the recipe:

For the dough:

1 ¾ cups pea flour *

¾ cup butter

Salt, pinch

For the filling:

1 cup leak, chopped

1 cup onions, chopped

4 eggs, beaten

1 ½ cups milk

2 cups grated cheese

1 cup zucchini, big dice

2 Tbsp rosemary, finely chopped

Salt & pepper to taste

¾ cup carrots, sliced thinly

2 cherry tomatoes, sliced

Preheat the oven to 160 degrees Celsius (320 degrees Fahrenheit). If you are NOT using a convection oven set the temperature to 180 degrees Celsius (355 degrees Fahrenheit). Cut the cold butter into cubes, and place them in a bowl. Add the pea flour and salt. Knead with your hands until a smooth dough has developed.

Very important: Never consume raw pea flour. It is poisonous in its uncooked stage. Then roll the dough out. It should be thin, and big enough to cover your quiche pan (pie pan works as well). Place the flattened dough into the quiche pan. If the dough cracks, just use some dough scraps to fix this. Now, take a fork, and poke holes into the dough.

Refrigerate for 25 minutes. Chop all your veggies, then set them aside. Add the eggs, and the milk to a bowl and mix well ( 2 minutes). Afterwards add the cheese, salt and pepper. Take your filled quiche pan out of the fridge, and add all the chopped veggies to it except for the tomatoes. Then pour the mixture  you just prepared on top.

Make sure the cheese is evenly distributed. Place the tomato slices on top and place the whole thing into the preheated oven for about 30-40 minutes. It should have a golden brown color on top. Tip: I use a strong cheese like gruyere, and I mix it with a milder one like Edam cheese (equal parts). 

* Again: Never consume raw pea flour, it is poisonous when uncooked.

 

Perfect Bruschetta

Perfect Bruschetta

A couple of years ago I lived in Italy for half a year. How lucky was I to be granted such an amazing experience. The food was fantastic, the people were friendly, and nature was breathtaking. 

I really recommend spending a few months in Italy, especially during the summer. I lived in the heart of Florence very close to the famous Duomo. During my stay I got to eat the most delicious specialties, and bruschetta was one of my all time favorites. Always fresh, and full of flavor. Here is what you need: 

1 rustic bread (preferably Ciabatta, or Baguette)

8 medium sized roma tomatoes, chopped finely

1 medium sized yellow onion, chopped finely

5 big cloves garlic, minzed

lemon zest of 1/4 lemon, or less

2/3 tsp fresh lemon juice

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp sunflower oil

14 medium sized basil leaves, chopped finely

Cayenne pepper, pinch

Salt & black pepper to taste (I am never shy on salt)

Garlic butter:

75 g (2,6 oz) butter, soft

1 clove garlic,minzed

¼ tsp salt

Pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius (340 degrees Fahrenheit). If you are not using a convection oven add about 20 degrees Celsius (70 degrees Fahrenheit). Then place the bread slices into the oven, and bake them for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the garlic butter. Chop the garlic into very fine, little pieces.

Using a fork, mix the garlic with the soft butter until these two are evenly combined. Then add salt, and pepper, and mix further. Microwave the garlic butter for a few seconds until it has melted. Remove the bread from the oven, and add garlic butter on top. Set them aside. Now add all the remaining ingredients to a bowl.

Mix well. Let the mixture rest for 20 minutes. Then add a generous amount of the mixture on top of each slice. Voila, enjoy this wonderful mediterranean treat. Tip: All the ingredients need to be chopped finely, because the smaller they are, the more flavors develop.

Love, Peppa.

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