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Healthier Almond Chocolate Truffles

Chocolate truffles are some of the best desserts out there and these ones are insanely good and a healthier replacement for many desserts.

I have to tell you a story about these truffles and the way I created this recipe.

I was supposed to go on a visit one day in December and that day I woke up at 5 am in the morning (crazy, I know! It wasn’t intentional). Anyhoo, I woke up while it was still dark and I didn’t want to wake the whole family up, so I used my phone torch to light up the kitchen counters and create a dessert or bring to that visit.

At that time, I still had no sense of smell after Covid. Basic tastes were okay but definitely not the smell. So I basically eyeballed ingredients and besides the sweetness, I had no idea how it tastes.

Apparently, people really liked them (I did as well, just couldn’t really enjoy all the goodness that’s inside). So I made them sooo sooo many times since then and I figured, this recipe is a must-share.

So here I am sharing it with you in hopes that you also get to enjoy its deliciousness.

The almond chocolate truffles recipe is pretty straightforward. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler (water below, chocolate above) and then mix in all the rest of the ingredients. Simple as that!

It might look like things are a bit too runny at the beginning, but once you start mixing, the chocolate will start to cool down and the mixture will get thick super quickly and you won’t even need to let it rest. You can start forming the truffles immediately.

Okay, let’s get to this amazing recipe as soon as possible!

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Healthier Almond Chocolate Truffles

Course Dessert
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips (120 g)
  • ½ cup crunchy almond butter (can be substituted with smooth almond butter)
  • 3 TBSP maple syrup
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • zest of one clementine
  • pinch of salt
  • unsweetened cocoa powder for coating

Instructions

  1. Fill a saucepan with a little water and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat. Place a heat-proof bowl on top of the saucepan, but make sure it's not touching the water. Place chocolate in the top bowl and mix frequently until the chocolate melts.

  2. Once the chocolate is melted remove the bowl from the saucepan and add the salt. Mix well.

  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. The mixture will be very liquid in the begining, but once you start mixing it will become very thick and pliable.

  4. Once it is mixed you can start forming truffles. I like smaller ones (1 tsp of mixture) but you can make larger ones too! If the mixture is not thick enough to make truffles, place it in the fridge for 30 minutes.

  5. Once the truffles are shaped, place unsweetened cocoa powder in a bowl and coat the truffles from all sides.

Vegan Speculaas Cake with Candied Oranges and Caramel Sauce

Make your home smell like Christmas with this flavorful vegan speculaas cake with candied oranges and caramel sauce.

Make your home smell like Christmas with this flavorful vegan speculaas cake with candied oranges and caramel sauce.

I’m so excited to share this recipe today. I made it together with my dear friend Vita from Little Kitchen Vibes !!!

Vita and I have met at one of my workshops and we’ve been friends since then, sharing our love of food and photography. She’s been helping me with some of my projects and so I figured why not make a personal project together. And we came up with this delicious vegan speculaas cake that literally smells like Christmas.

If I had my smell completely back from Covid, it would be even more Christmasy, but even with that, it’s just incredible. So I invite you to try the recipe, even if you’re not vegan. The cake is absolutely soft and moist and most of all have that nice crumb a good cake should have.

If you’ve been here reading my posts before, you know how much I love simple recipes. Even though it seems like a lot of ingredients the process is in fact super simple and straightforward. Like with every other butter cake, you whip butter and sugar together, then mix apples, oat milk and coconut milk in a blender and mix it in the butter together with the rest of the ingredients.

Caramel is just as simple. Simply combine everything in a bowl and you’re good to go. This caramel, though!!! Best vegan caramel I’ve ever tried. It’s super sweet just like caramel should be (right?) and had a very deep rich flavor. So good!

Make your home smell like Christmas with this flavorful vegan speculaas cake with candied oranges and caramel sauce.
Make your home smell like Christmas with this flavorful vegan speculaas cake with candied oranges and caramel sauce.
Make your home smell like Christmas with this flavorful vegan speculaas cake with candied oranges and caramel sauce.
Make your home smell like Christmas with this flavorful vegan speculaas cake with candied oranges and caramel sauce.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Vegan Speculaas Cake with Candied Oranges and Caramel Sauce

Course Dessert
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

Vegan Speculaas Cake

  • 100 g vegan butter
  • 120 g brown sugar
  • 450 g all-purpose flour
  • 1 pack baking powder (4g)
  • 3 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground corriander
  • ½ tsp ground allspice
  • tsp ground cloves
  • tsp ground nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • 250 g candied orange peel
  • 250 g apples
  • 200 ml oat milk
  • 200 ml full-fat coconut milk (from a can, cream and water combined)

Vegan Caramel

  • 2 TBSP whole almond butter
  • 1 tsp gingerbread spice mix (or 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/6 tsp ginger, pinch coriander, pinch allspice, pinch cardamom, pinch cloves, pinch nutmeg)
  • 4 TBSP agave syrup
  • ½ TBSP coconut milk (or more if the caramel is too thick)

Topping

  • 200 ml vegan whipping cream (coconut is the best) 

Instructions

Vegan Speculaas Cake

  1. Add vegan butter and sugar to a large bowl and whip it with an electric mixer until you get a fluffy and even cream.

  2. To another large bowl, add all the dry ingredients – flour, salt, and spices. Mix well with a whisk.

  3. Cut apples into pieces and blend them along with oat milk and coconut milk.

  4. Now combine all the ingredients into an even batter. Fold in candied oranges.

  5. Bake in a buttered long rectangular baking pan (usually used for bread loaves) and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 45 minutes.

  6. Once your cake is baked well, let it cool down completely.

Vegan Caramel

  1. While your cake is baking, make caramel sauce. Add all the ingredients for caramel sauce to a blender and blend well or add them to a bowl and mix with an electric mixer.

Finishing the cake

  1. Whip your whipping cream in a tall bowl until it's firm and holds its shape.

  2. Before you serve it, spread whipped cream on top and pour some caramel sauce over it. You can decorate it with fresh oranges, too.

If you feel like baking something else for Christmas, I have a few other delicious recipes, such as Almond Butter Cookies and Chocolate Hazelnut Bundt Cake.

Make your home smell like Christmas with this flavorful vegan speculaas cake with candied oranges and caramel sauce.

Holiday Cabin (Savory Gingerbread House)

Prepare to dazzle your guests with this savory gingerbread house shaped as a holiday cabin. Add it to your charcuterie board and it will be a perfect match!

Prepare to dazzle your guests with this savory gingerbread house shaped as a holiday cabin. Add it to your charcuterie board and it will be a perfect match!

The holidays are almost here! Can you believe it?

Every year, I’m dreaming about making a gingerbread house, but then there’s always so much candy and I don’t want to end up with waste. Because there’s no way we can eat all of it. And that’s why I decided that this year I’m gonna make a savory gingerbread house. Something small, that we can eat immediately.

Making a savory house is a bit different because creating savory icing that doesn’t contain water is very hard. When the icing has water it’s going to make the cookie (or in this case cracker) become soft after a while. That’s why this is a house that needs to be eaten within an hour of making it.

Prepare to dazzle your guests with this savory gingerbread house shaped as a holiday cabin. Add it to your charcuterie board and it will be a perfect match!

Why two differet kinds of crackers in the savory gingerbread house?

I made the house with two different types of crackers, simply for variety when people eat it. If you don’t feel like making two different crackers, don’t worry. You can make just one. Each of the two cracker recipes in this article is enough to make a house. This means that if you make two, you have enough crackers to make two houses!

I imagined a cabin made of stone with a wooden roof and that’s why I baked crackers with lots of seeds to mimic that stone appearance. And I used the regular rye crackers to make the door and the roof.

Prepare to dazzle your guests with this savory gingerbread house shaped as a holiday cabin. Add it to your charcuterie board and it will be a perfect match!

To make the house stand I used processed cheese and I used cream cheese to frost the roof to make the salty sticks adhere to the roof. I also used cream cheese to decorate the house. The same way as I would if I used royal icing – with a piping bag.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Holiday Cabin (Savory Gingerbread House)

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 hours
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

Wholegrain Rye Crackers

  • cups wholegrain rye flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 5 TBSP olive oil

Wholegrain seed crackers

  • 80 g wholegrain rye flour
  • 250 ml water
  • 50 g flax seeds
  • 40 g sunflower seeds
  • 40 g sesame seeds
  • 40 g black sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 TBSP olive oil

Icing and decorations

  • processed cheese for gluing the crackers together
  • cream cheese for frosting the roof and decorating the house
  • salty sticks
  • peanuts
  • olives
  • rosemary
  • transparent jelly

Instructions

Wholegrain Rye Crackers

  1. Place all ingredients in a bowl and gently bring together. Do not knead too much or else the crackers won't be as crunchy.

  2. Add more water if necessary. The dough should be pretty firm and not overly stiky.

  3. Place the dough onto baking paper and roll out 3-4 mm thick.

  4. Cut out the house using paper template (you can get the template below the recipe)

  5. Make sure the cuts are pretty significant, but don't move any parts of the house. Everything should be close together to prevent the shapes to change.

  6. Transfer the paper gently onto a baking tray and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C (350°F) for 20 minutes.

  7. When the crackers are baked remove them from the oven but leave them on the baking tray to cool down completely, before transfering them off the tray. They will harden as they cook.

Wholegrain seed crackers

  1. Mix flax seeds with water and leave them to soak for 30 minutes.

  2. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring them together in a dough. Don't overmix.

  3. Place the dough onto baking paper and roll out 3-4 mm thick.

  4. Cut out the house using a paper template (you can get the template below the recipe)

  5. Make sure the cuts are pretty significant but don't move any parts of the house. Everything should be close together to prevent the shapes to change.

  6. Transfer the paper gently onto a baking tray and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C (350°F) for 20 minutes.

  7. When the crackers are baked remove them from the oven but leave them on the baking tray to cool down completely, before transfering them off the tray. They will harden as they cook.

Decorating the house

  1. Use cream cheese to frost the roof and add salty sticks on top, to create a wooden look.

  2. Once the roof is done use processed cheese to glue all the pieces of the house together.

  3. Place the chimney on top.

  4. Use cream cheese to pipe snow on the house and to decorate as you like.

  5. You can use peanut halves to create a stone path, make firm jelly using water and gelatine to create icecubes, halve olives and add rosemary inside to create flower pots or use rosemary as decorations. Imagination is the limit. Be creative!

Prepare to dazzle your guests with this savory gingerbread house shaped as a holiday cabin. Add it to your charcuterie board and it will be a perfect match!
Prepare to dazzle your guests with this savory gingerbread house shaped as a holiday cabin. Add it to your charcuterie board and it will be a perfect match!

Persimmon Panna Cotta

Feeling all cozy with a persimmon panna cotta – spiced panna cotta with a delicious a surprising persimmon jelly.

Feeling all cozy with a persimmon panna cotta - spiced panna cotta with a delicious a surprising persimmon jelly.

Time for a cozy and comforting dessert.

I find panna cotta to be such an easy dessert for whenever you have guests coming over and you don’t have much time to do some proper baking. Plus I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like panna cotta.

This one today is inspired by the cool autumn weather we are having these days. I added a bit of cinnamon and vanilla into panna cotta. And then topped the panna cotta with homemade persimmon jelly, which basically requires only two ingredients.

Did you know that persimmons contain very high amounts of pectin? This means that they can be used as a hardening agent for homemade jams and you can use this knowledge to create a persimmon jam. And you don’t need any gelatine or agar. The persimmon pulp will harden on its own. I have used this in one of my very old recipes for persimmon coffee pudding.

So I just added a bit of sugar to make the process of solidifying even more pronounced. And that’s it, a very simple homemade persimmon jelly.

One word of caution though. Make sure that the persimmons you are using are ripe otherwise the tannins in the fruit will make your mouth dry. And that’s not a pleasant thing to feel.

Feeling all cozy with a persimmon panna cotta - spiced panna cotta with a delicious a surprising persimmon jelly.
Feeling all cozy with a persimmon panna cotta - spiced panna cotta with a delicious a surprising persimmon jelly.
Feeling all cozy with a persimmon panna cotta - spiced panna cotta with a delicious a surprising persimmon jelly.
Feeling all cozy with a persimmon panna cotta - spiced panna cotta with a delicious a surprising persimmon jelly.
Feeling all cozy with a persimmon panna cotta - spiced panna cotta with a delicious a surprising persimmon jelly.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Persimmon Panna Cotta

Course Dessert
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Resting time 3 hours
Servings 6 servings
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

Panna Cotta

  • cups heavy cream (600 ml)
  • 2 TBSP caster suagr (30 g)
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp vanilla seeds or vanilla extract
  • 3 gelatine leaves (5 g)

Persimmon Jelly

  • 2 hachiya persimmons
  • 2 TBSP caster sugar (30 g)

Instructions

Panna Cotta

  1. Place gelatine leaves into a bowl with cold water to soften.

  2. Place heavy cream, caster sugar, ground cinnamon and vanilla beans (or vanilla extract) into a saucepan and bring to a simmer. The mixture should not boil.

  3. Remove from heat immediately and stir in the softened gelatine leaves and whisk to combine.

  4. Pour the mixture into serving cups and keep refrigerated until it sets. This should take an hour or two.

Persimmon Jelly

  1. Scoop out the flesh of the persimmon and discard the skin. Remove seeds, if any.

  2. Place it in a food processor and add caster sugar.

  3. Mix until smooth.

  4. Pour over the chilled panna cotta.

  5. Place into the fridge for an hour, which will let the pectin do its magic and create a jelly.

Feeling all cozy with a persimmon panna cotta - spiced panna cotta with a delicious a surprising persimmon jelly.

Fudge Brownie Cake with Chocolate Ganache

I love it when you can make the most chocolaty fudge brownie cake with the simplest of ingredients. And to top it all, make a simple and most delicious chocolate ganache.

I love it when you can make the most chocolaty fudge brownie cake with the simplest of ingredients. And to top it all make a simple and most delicious chocolate ganache.

Anyone else here dreaming about chocolate desserts now that it’s become moodier and cooler?

I’m not normally the one dreaming about anything chocolate (many desserts come before chocolate!) but this year I can’t help myself 🙂

So the other day I made a chocolate fudge brownie cake and it was utterly drool-worthy. It would be a shame not to share the recipe with you guys. And I actually added a simple chocolate ganache recipe to use on the cake. Because more chocolate is just better (again, I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I guess times are changing!).

Here I used a bunch of fruits from the garden (I shot these a while ago when we still had some blueberries and raspberries in the garden). You can add any fruit you like such as banana, figs, pears and similar or just keep it a simple chocolate cake. Be creative!

I love it when you can make the most chocolaty fudge brownie cake with the simplest of ingredients. And to top it all make a simple and most delicious chocolate ganache.
I love it when you can make the most chocolaty fudge brownie cake with the simplest of ingredients. And to top it all make a simple and most delicious chocolate ganache.
I love it when you can make the most chocolaty fudge brownie cake with the simplest of ingredients. And to top it all make a simple and most delicious chocolate ganache.
I love it when you can make the most chocolaty fudge brownie cake with the simplest of ingredients. And to top it all make a simple and most delicious chocolate ganache.

Like I’ve said here probably a million times, the best recipes are simple ones that don’t require a bunch of ingredients and equipment. This is a recipe just like that. And that’s why I’m such a huge fan of brownies. So simple and everyone always likes them. Win-win!

If you’re not into fudgy brownies and prefer a cakier one, I have another amazing recipe here.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Fudge Brownie Cake with Chocolate Ganache

Course Dessert
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Cooling time 2 hours
Total Time 3 hours
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

Fudge Brownie Cake

  • 200 g bitter-sweet chocolate finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup butter cubed
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Chocolate ganache

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (110 ml)
  • 150 g bitter-sweet chocolate very finely chopped

Instructions

Fudge Brownie Cake

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) and butter the sides and bottom of a 6-inch cake pan.

  2. Place chocolate and butter in a heat-proof bowl and place it over a pan of simmering water. Stir often until chocolate and butter have melted completely.

  3. Remove from the stove and add sugar and salt. Mix well.

  4. Once the mixture is not anymore, add eggs one at a time and use a whisk to mix them in well. The mixture should not be too slimy.

  5. Finally, add flour and mix it in to get a uniform batter.

  6. Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake for 40-45 minutes. You can do a toothpick test, however you will see it be brown and sticky even when the cake is done. Just make sure the toothpick shows the sticky inside and not a runny inside.

  7. Once the cake is baked, remove it from the oven and leave to rest for 10 minutes before removing it from the pan.

  8. Cool it to room temperature or keep in the fridge before decorating with chocolate ganache.

Chocolate ganache

  1. While the cake is cooling, prepare the chocolate ganache.

  2. Pour heavy cream into a pot and heat until steaming but DO NOT LET IT BOIL!

  3. Pour the steaming hot heavy cream over the finely chopped chocolate and let it sit for 5-10 minutes or until the chocolate has completely melted. Stir with a spatula to create a smooth cream.

  4. The cream will be pretty runny and it's okay to use it like this if you prefer.

  5. To create a cream like in the photos, wait until the cream cools down to room temperature to become thicker and spreadable. If it still feels too runny, place it in the fridge until it gets the right consistency.

  6. You can prepare the cream in advance and store it in the fridge, then take it out an hour before using it.

I love it when you can make the most chocolaty fudge brownie cake with the simplest of ingredients. And to top it all make a simple and most delicious chocolate ganache.
I love it when you can make the most chocolaty fudge brownie cake with the simplest of ingredients. And to top it all make a simple and most delicious chocolate ganache.

White chocolate & matcha chia pudding with figs

This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.

This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.

Even though it has been around for a while, I’ve just recently discovered chia pudding. For whatever reason, I steered away from it for so long, even though I live chia seeds.

So during the lockdowns, we were making puddings in all shapes and sizes so I said why not try one with chia seeds. And it was amazing. The first one I made was with dark chocolate and peanut butter, which is also a recipe I need to share one day.

However this Summer I felt like making something just slightly brighter so I made a white chocolate and matcha chia pudding and some freshly made fig jam for that extra punch in flavor.

What I loved about pairing figs with chia pudding is the fact that they both have a crunch to them.

For me anything with small seeds paired with something very smooth is annoying (maybe that’s just me). But here both the pudding and the jam have actual seed in so it’s just a perfect combo texture-wise as well.

This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.
This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.
This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.
This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.

So we’re just enjoying the last days of Summer. It’s getting pretty cold here these days in the morning so I’m bringing my warm clothes out and dreaming about pumpkins and apple pies. Is this too soon?

Anyway, I hope you’ll enjoy this recipe. Let me know in the comments if you try it.

This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

White chocolate & matcha chia pudding with figs

Course Dessert
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Resting Time 5 hours
Total Time 5 hours 20 minutes
Servings 2 servings
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

  • ½ cup chia seeds
  • 2 cups plant-based milk (animal milk works okay too if you're not vegan)
  • 100 g vegan white chocolate (regular white chocolate works too, if you're not vegan)
  • 1 TBSP matcha powder
  • chopped nuts

Fig jam

  • 200 g fresh ripe figs
  • 3 TBSP white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla seeds or vanilla extract
  • 2 TBSP water
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

Instructions

Chia Pudding

  1. Place a small pot over medium heat.

  2. Chop white chocolate in small chunks and place them in a heat-proof bowl.

  3. Place the bowl over the pot and stir the chocolate constantly and remove from heat as soon as it completely melts.

  4. In a medium-size bowl mix milk, matcha powder and chia seeds using a whisk.

  5. Pour in white chocolate slowly whisking quickly to incorporate it into the pudding mixture.

  6. Place in the fridge for at least 5 hours, but preferably overnight, to set.

Fig jam

  1. Remove hard parts of the fig stem and cut figs into small pieces.

  2. Place them in a small pot and add all other jam ingredients.

  3. Cook for five to ten minutes or until figs become really soft.

  4. Move to a food processor and mix until you get a smooth jam.

  5. Jam will become thicker when it sets.

Assembly

  1. Once the jam and the pudding have set place the pudding into two glasses halfway up. Then add the jam and finish with the rest of the pudding. If you wish, you can add some fresh figs into the glass and on top and top everything with chopped nuts.

If you’re into pudding recipes you might also like:

This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.
This deliciously rich white chocolate and matcha chia pudding with a homemade fig jam is such a wonderful dessert for late Summer.

Refreshing Summer Watermelon Salad

When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.

When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.

If there’s a Summer fruit I can’t stop eating, it’s the watermelon. I just love the crunch and the sweetness. I’m always happy when I find a watermelon that’s just perfectly ripe. And so I got a local one from my veggie deliverer and it slipped my mind that I never tried watermelon in a salad. I’ve seen people use it in a salad, so I tried and used it in a salad that we normally make at home all the time, but replace tomatoes with watermelon.

Haaa, a new world opened. So delicious!

So I’m sharing the watermelon salad recipe I made with you to try and enjoy. It’s extremely simple and so incredibly delicious. And if you’re into salads that include summer fruit, check my cucumber and peach salad.

When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.

When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.

For this salad, you’ll need a perfectly ripe watermelon. I prefer to go a bit underripe than overripe because overly ripe watermelon is too sweet for my taste and it also doesn’t hold its shape as nicely. You’ll also need some cucumbers, black olives and Feta cheese. and to top it all off you’ll need some fresh basil leaves and a few simple ingredients to make the vinaigrette – olive oil, lime juice, lime zest, salt and crushed white or red pepper.

Very simple, y’all know I like simple foods 🙂

When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.
When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.
When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Refreshing Summer Watermelon Salad

Course Salad
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

  • 600 g watermelon, deseeded and cubed (1.3 lb)
  • 200 g cucumber, sliced (7 oz)
  • 200 g Feta cheese (7 oz)
  • 200 g black olives (7 oz)
  • 10-15 basil leaves

Lime Vinaigrette

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • juice of 1 lime
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp white or red pepper, crushed
  • zest of 1 lime

Instructions

Lime Vinaigrette

  1. Whisk olive oil, lime juice, salt, pepper and lime zest in a small bowl to get an emulsified vinaigrette.

Salad

  1. Combine watermelon, cucumber, Feta cheese and olives, and mix.

  2. Pour over the vinaigrette and toss to coat the salad.

  3. Chill for at least 30 minutes

  4. Once chilled place fresh basil leaves on top and serve.

When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.
When it comes to refreshing salads nothing beats a refreshing watermelon salad inspired by Greek salad.

Honey Poached Apricots

A light Summer dessert with ton of flavor – honey poached apricots. This soft and tender desserts melts in your mouth.

A light Summer dessert with ton of flavor - honey poached apricots. This soft and tender desserts melts in your mouth.

Summer is perfect for light refreshing desserts, don’ you agree?

This year Summer came extremely late, we were already anxiously waiting for it. And it came with a ton of beautiful local apricots. It would be a shame not to make something sweet with them.

So for today I have a very simple recipe. It doesn’t require many ingredients, but when the flavors combine, the most delicious treat comes to life.

If you never tried poaching anything, then you are in luck because these are seriously amazing!

In order to poach these apricots, you need to find a quality dry wine. I like to cook the wine for 15 minutes to remove some of the alcohol before poaching the apricots. And after the apricots are done, I cook the sauce a little more to make it a bit more syrupy and sweet.

Once everything is nice and cooled down, you can serve it with some Greek-style yogurt or I sometimes add crème fraîche instead. And you can top everything with some chopped nuts, like pistachios.

And that’s it! Super easy, right? Not to mention how beautiful these poached apricots look!

A light Summer dessert with ton of flavor - honey poached apricots. This soft and tender desserts melts in your mouth.
A light Summer dessert with ton of flavor - honey poached apricots. This soft and tender desserts melts in your mouth.
A light Summer dessert with ton of flavor - honey poached apricots. This soft and tender desserts melts in your mouth.
A light Summer dessert with ton of flavor - honey poached apricots. This soft and tender desserts melts in your mouth.

If you are a fan of paoched fruits I have another delicious recipes – hibiscus poached pears.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Honey Poached Apricots

Course Dessert
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Cooling Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings 5 people
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

  • 10 apricots halved and depitted
  • cup dry white wine (600ml)
  • ¼ cup honey (4 TBSP)
  • 6 thyme springs
  • 5 TBSP Greek-style yogurt
  • chopped pistachios

Instructions

  1. Combine wine, honey and thyme in a large pot and bring to simmer. Let simmer for 15 minutes (longer if you want more alcohol to evaporate).

  2. Add halved and depitted apricots and cook for about 5 minutes or until just tender. The apricots shouldn't be too soft, so remove them when they are still holding their shape. Once they get tender remove them from the pot immediately onto a cool plate and let cool.

  3. Cook the sauce for another 10-15 minutes until it slightly thickens.

  4. Let cool to room temperature.

  5. Serve the cooled apricots with some cooled sauce, a dollop of Greek-style yogurt and some chopped pistachios.

A light Summer dessert with ton of flavor - honey poached apricots. This soft and tender desserts melts in your mouth.
A light Summer dessert with ton of flavor - honey poached apricots. This soft and tender desserts melts in your mouth.

Spicy Pineapple Roasted Chickpea Tacos (Vegan)

The best homemade chickpea tacos – filled with a creamy avocado spread, spicy roasted chickpeas and a vibrant fresh pineapple salsa.

The best homemade chickpea tacos - filled with a creamy avocado spread, spicy roasted chickpeas and a vibrant fresh pineapple salsa.

Tacos are something I could eat every day. They are so versatile and you can make them extremely healthy. While we love tacos with some meat, we also change it up a notch every now and then. And these spicy pineapple roasted chickpea tacos are just the perfect recipe for these kinds of days.

I like to make our own taco shells, just because they are so easy to make and much better than the ones I can find in the stores here. But you know, if you’re in a hurry or feeling lazy, those are completely fine 🙂 If you feel like making your own, I have a recipe for them here.

The best homemade chickpea tacos - filled with a creamy avocado spread, spicy roasted chickpeas and a vibrant fresh pineapple salsa.
The best homemade chickpea tacos - filled with a creamy avocado spread, spicy roasted chickpeas and a vibrant fresh pineapple salsa.

Summer is just around the corner, although it’s feeling more like the beginning of Spring over here with a ton of rain, wind and temperature much lower than I’d like right now. But, I’m looking forward to warmer weather and I’m keeping my fingers crossed they come sooner rather than later. When they do I’m ready with these recipes.

We like to make really easy and quick dinners in the Summer because we tend to hang out outside most of the day and want to stay out as long as possible. And this recipe is extremely quick. While you’re roasting the chickpeas in the oven you can prepare the avocado spread takes a minute or two and then a few minutes to chop up pineapple, peppers, and onions, and parsley for the salsa.

The best homemade chickpea tacos - filled with a creamy avocado spread, spicy roasted chickpeas and a vibrant fresh pineapple salsa.
The best homemade chickpea tacos - filled with a creamy avocado spread, spicy roasted chickpeas and a vibrant fresh pineapple salsa.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Spicy Pineapple Roasted Chickpea Tacos (Vegan)

Course Appetizer, Breakfast, brunch, Main Course
Keyword mexican, tortilla
Prep Time 25 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 6 tacos
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

  • 6 taco shells (recipe to homemade tortillas in the description)

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

  • 1 can (400g or 14 oz) cooked chickpeas
  • 2 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp ground dried garlic
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 TBSP olive oil

Avocado Spread

  • 1 large avocado
  • juice of one lime
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • pepper to taste

Pineapple salsa

  • 1 cup finelly diced pineapple
  • 1/2 cup finely diced red pepper
  • 1/4 cup finelly diced red onions
  • 1/4 cup finelly chopped parsley
  • juice of one lime

Instructions

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F).

  2. Drain the chickpeas and place them in a bowl, together with all other ingredients for the chickpea and mix well.

  3. Place the marinated chickpeas onto a baking tray and roast in the preheated oven for 20 minutes or until they get golden and crisp.

Avocado Spread

  1. While the chickpeas are roasting peel and deseed avocado and place it in a bowl together with the rest of the ingredients for the spread. Use a fork to make a lumpy spread. You can make it as smooth or lumpy as you like.

Pineapple salsa

  1. Dice pineapple, peppers and onions finely and chop the parsley nicely as well. Add the juice of one lime and mix well.

Serving

  1. Once the chickpeas are done, heat the taco shells in a clean pan.

  2. Fill the shells with avocado spread on the bottom, then add some roasted chickpeas and top with fresh pineapple salsa.

The best homemade chickpea tacos - filled with a creamy avocado spread, spicy roasted chickpeas and a vibrant fresh pineapple salsa.

Strawberry Gin and Tonic

Learn this easy recipe for a fruity strawberry gin and tonic with homemade strawberry simple syrup. Only a few simple ingredients but so much flavor!

Learn this easy recipe for a fruity strawberry gin and tonic with homemade strawberry simple syrup. Only a few simple ingredients but so much flavor!

When it comes to cocktails nothing beats a good gin and tonic if you ask me. If you’ve scrolled through this page a bit, you’ve noticed I have a thing for this lovely refreshing cocktail. For further ideas, you can check my Pink Grapefruit Gin and Tonic or Elderflower And Passion Fruit Gin And Tonic. This time I have a delicious Spring gin and tonic with a homemade strawberry simple syrup.

Before trying to make my first homemade syrup, I was a bit scared to try, but these are extremely simple to make. Hence the name ‘simple’. Literally, just bring everything to a boil, let simmer for fifteen to twenty minutes, and chill. That’s it! You can really go crazy with flavors here and invent your new flavor combos.

Once you have the syrup, you can use it for this cocktail, some other cocktail, dilute it with water and drink like that, use in desserts or pour over your favorite ice cream. So many choices!

If you’re going to make this gin and tonic, you can mix the syrup with gin and a regular tonic or you can make it a bit extra and choose pink tonic water. It will really enhance the flavor of your gin and tonic and add a little more color as well.

Before we go on with the recipe, I want to give you an update on one of the projects me and my hubby are working on lately. It’s fermenting our own ginger beer. We’ve had lots of success and now we’re experimenting with different flavors. We’re gonna do a bit more experimanting and testing and then I will also share some recipes and tips about fermenting your own drinks. How would you like that?

Anyhoo, let’s make the cocktail!

Learn this easy recipe for a fruity strawberry gin and tonic with homemade strawberry simple syrup. Only a few simple ingredients but so much flavor!
Learn this easy recipe for a fruity strawberry gin and tonic with homemade strawberry simple syrup. Only a few simple ingredients but so much flavor!
Learn this easy recipe for a fruity strawberry gin and tonic with homemade strawberry simple syrup. Only a few simple ingredients but so much flavor!

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Strawberry Gin and Tonic

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Cooling time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 25 minutes
Servings 1 serving
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

Cocktail

  • 30 ml gin chilled
  • 90 ml tonic water (regular or pink) chilled
  • 30 ml strawberry simple syrup chilled

Strawberry Simple Syrup

  • 250 g strawberries (½ lb)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar

Instructions

Strawberry Simple Syrup

  1. Place all syrup ingredients into a saucepan. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and let cook for 15-20 minutes until strawberries are very soft and the lliquid has become deep red.

  2. Strain the syrup through a mesh sieve making sure not to press down the strawberries.

  3. Leave the syrup to cool to room temperature then move to the fridge and wait at least an hour to chill. You can use the leftover strawberries as ice cream garnish.

Cocktail

  1. Place 30 ml of the strawberry simple syrup into the bottom of a cocktail glass. Add a handful of ice. Then pour over the gin and finish with regular or pink tonic water.

  2. Serve immediately.

Learn this easy recipe for a fruity strawberry gin and tonic with homemade strawberry simple syrup. Only a few simple ingredients but so much flavor!
Learn this easy recipe for a fruity strawberry gin and tonic with homemade strawberry simple syrup. Only a few simple ingredients but so much flavor!

Vegan Rainbow Tofu Spring Rolls

Enjoy these refreshing and delicious tofu spring rolls filled with crisp vegetables, creamy avocado, and flavorful marinated tofu.

When it comes to fresh veggies there’s nothing better than spring rolls. And what is more, I’m not focusing on anything too traditional here. And that’s the fun part because you can use whatever veggies you have on hand and whatever is in season.

For this recipe, I’ve joined forces with my dear friend Kristina from Story on a plate. I have provided the recipe and food and together we’ve created this beautiful scene and photos! So credit for those to her as well and if you’re not following her on IG yet, go ahead and do that right now.

Whenever I make spring rolls I make sure to use veggies of different colors because that’s how we get different vitamins, right? And it’s just so pretty to see a beautiful rainbow of colors.

We come to the best part of these tofu spring rolls and that’s the marinated tofu. This marinated tofu is gold and this is coming from not such a huge tofu fan. Once I tried tofu marinated like that, I was hooked. And from now on I’ll be experimenting with flavoring tofu heaps more. What about you? What’s your favorite tofu recipe? I really wanna know!

If you’re a fan of tofu, I have a recipe for a Vegan Asparagus Quiche with tofu as well or Vegan roasted pumpkin curry with tofu.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Vegan Rainbow Tofu Spring Rolls

Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

Tofu Marinade

  • 3 TBSP thai sweet soy sauce
  • 1 TBSP fresh or dried lemongrass chopped very finelly
  • 1/2 TBSP chili flakes

Rainbow Tofu Spring Rolls

  • 350 g medium or firm tofu drained and thoroughly dried/pressed
  • 8-10 sheets of 22cm/8.5" round rice paper 
  • 8-10 small letuce leaves
  • 5-7 radishes
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 small piece red cabbage
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • juice of 1 lime for preventing avocado to brown

Dipping Sauce

  • 2 TBSP low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 TBSP thai sweet soy sauce
  • 1 TBSP hoisin sauce
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • ½ tsp sesame seeds

Instructions

Rainbow Tofu Spring Rolls

  1. In a rather large bowl mix all tofu marinade ingredients.

  2. After your tofu has beed drained and dried cut tofu into rectangles about 1 cm (0.5 inch wide).

  3. Place the tofu into the marinade and carefully toss to coat all sides.

  4. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Add a TBSP of cooking oil to the pan and cook tofu for 4-5 minutes or until all sides are golden.

Dipping Sauce

  1. Bring all the ingredients together mix well to combine.

Rainbow Tofu Spring Rolls

  1. Cut carrots into shin sticks (julienne) and red cabage into thin slices. Also thinly slice the radishes.

  2. Thinly slice avocado and as soon as you cut it squeeze some lime juice over the avocado to prevent it from oxidizing.

  3. Prepare your lettuce leaf and place some carrots, red cabbage and tofu inside and roll it into a tight roll.

  4. Prepare a large bowl with cold water for 2-3 seconds then drain for a second and place it on the counter smooth side down.

  5. Add the lettuce roll to the center of the soaked rice paper. Then add radishes in a row above the lettuce roll. This will be your outer side of the roll. Place some avocado on top of the radishes.

  6. Begin rolling your spring rolls. First, bring in the left and right sides. Then bring in the bottom side of the rice paper and begin rolling while maintaining some pressure. Be sure not to be too firm, otherwise, the rice papers might break.

  7. Serve immediately.

Vegan Peanut Butter And Strawberry Ice Pops

Brining Spring vibes with these delicious creamy peanut butter and strawberry ice pops. Super easy and super flavourful!

Brining Spring vibes with these delicious creamy peanut butter and strawberry ice pops. Super easy and super flavourful!

Are you just as excited about warmer weather as I am? Although I’m a big Winter person, I’m already dreaming about green meadows and walks across blooming fields. Being able to walk barefoot and eat a ton of strawberries!

With my mind already heading towards these warm days, I’m bringing this very simple strawberry ice pops recipe. I can’t wait for fresh homegrown strawberries. And I start craving them every March.

This ice pops are completely vegan and extremely easy to make. Plus, who doesn’t love ice pops. My son thinks they are the most fun form of ice cream there is.

Brining Spring vibes with these delicious creamy peanut butter and strawberry ice pops. Super easy and super flavourful!

What do you need for these peanut butter and strawberry ice pops?

All you need is some fresh strawberries, although frozen ones work too. I just prefer to use fresh ones if I can get them to be sweet and flavorful enough. Right now, they’re not in season so not all of them will be good. If you can’t get good fresh ones, then frozen are a better option. Frozen strawberries are frozen in their ripe state so they have plenty of flavor!

Next you need some quality peanut butter. I always make sure I get a 100% peanut butter and avoid using peanut butters with added palm oil, sugar or atrificial ingredients.

You will also need some form of a plant-based milk. I like my creamy oat milk, but you can use any that you like. Just keep in mind that if you use any milk that has very strong flavor, such as coconut milk, you will probably end up tasting it in the final ice pops.

You also need some Medjool dates to sweeten the ice pops and make them nice and creamy. I like to soak them in hot water before I blend them together with milk and peanut butter, because I find it a bit easier for a blender (especially a not-so-powerful one) to make a smooth purée.

If you feel like decorating your ice pops, you can add some melted vegan chocolate and a sprinkle of freeze-dried strawberries once they firm up in the freezer.

Let’s make them!

Brining Spring vibes with these delicious creamy peanut butter and strawberry ice pops. Super easy and super flavourful!
Brining Spring vibes with these delicious creamy peanut butter and strawberry ice pops. Super easy and super flavourful!
Brining Spring vibes with these delicious creamy peanut butter and strawberry ice pops. Super easy and super flavourful!

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Vegan Peanut Butter And Strawberry Ice Pops

Course Dessert
Keyword ice cream
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Cooling Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 40 minutes
Servings 10 1/3 cup ice pop mold
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

  • 400 g fresh or frozen strawberries
  • 3 TBSP sugar
  • 10 medjool dates de-pitted
  • 1 cup plant-based milk of choice
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
  • hot water for soaking
  • vegan chocolate for decoration
  • freeze-dried strawberries for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Clean the strawberries and remove the greens. Cut into small chunks and place in a saucepan. add sugar and cook on medium heat for 15-20 minutes. Remove from the stove and leave to cool to room temperature.

  2. Meanwhile, soak de-pitted Medjool dates in hot water for 10-15 minutes, then drain and place in a blender. Add plant-based milk of choice and peanut butter and blend into a fine paste. Leave in the blender until the strawberries are cooled.

  3. Add cooled strawberries to the blender and blend until smooth.

  4. Divide into ice pop molds and pop a stick into each.

  5. Place in the freezer until solid.

  6. Once they are firm, take them out of the molds and sprinkle with melted chocolate and freeze-dried strawberries.

Brining Spring vibes with these delicious creamy peanut butter and strawberry ice pops. Super easy and super flavourful!
Brining Spring vibes with these delicious creamy peanut butter and strawberry ice pops. Super easy and super flavourful!

Sauerkraut Börek

These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and the soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on their own.

These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.

Today, I’m sharing a dish we’ve been making a lot this Winter. And it’s honoring the deliciousness of sauerkraut, which we have on the menu at least once a week during the cold months.

What is sauerkraut?

Sauerkraut is fermented cabbage, that is usually cut finely, but you can also get the whole cabbage heads. I’m not sure if these can be purchased everywhere, but they are quite common in the Balkans.

The name sauerkraut comes form German and means sour cabbage.

While sauerkraut is not a traditional filling for börek, we can’t stop making it after tasting the sauerkraut börek. It is created with very simple ingredients, and the process is straightforward.

This recipe also includes the recipe for homemade phyllo dough, although the storebought is just as fine. Whenever I use the storebought, I prefer finding phyllo dough that’s very thin. It creates a very crispy and flaky skin on the börek.

These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.
These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.
These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.

How do you make the homemade phyllo dough?

Although it might sound intimidating to make your own phyllo dough, it’s actually not that difficult. Take it from me, I’m by no means an expert. If you ever stop by YouTube and check the professionals, you might easily be discouraged, but it really only takes a gentle hand while stretching the dough.

The dough is basically just flour, water, and salt. Optionally you can a little oil for flavor. I used olive oil for this sauerkraut börek, however, I don’t even put oil every time I make phyllo dough. The dough is very soft and is very easy to knead by hand. It might stick a bit at first, but once you get the gluten going you’re good!

Then all it takes is to rest the dough in an oiled bowl, covered with some foil, so it doesn’t dry out. After you’ve left the dough to rest for at least 30 minutes, you roll the dough just a little bit, oil the surface, and let it rest covered for about 20 minutes. This lets the gluten relax. After that, the dough is ready to be stretched. Gently slide your fingers under the dough, right to the center, and gently stretch towards yourself. Move around the dough and stretch. Always make sure you stretch the thicker parts and not the parts that are already very thin.

Some people also use the rolling method, however, I don’t own a long thin rolling pin, so I use this method, which is very common for the Balkans anyway. Here’s a nice video to show you how this method works.

While you can stretch the entire dough in one go and get one huge piece of dough, I find it easier to divide my dough into smaller doughs right before resting and then stretch each one separately.

Time to fill the börek

After you’ve stretched the dough you can fill it with the most delicious sauerkraut filling. I have to be honest with you. The person who actually created the filling recipe for this sauerkraut börek is my husband with a bit of help of my son. I’m usually responsible for making the dough and they get to do the fillings when we make any kind of börek.

These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.
These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.
These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.
These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.
These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.

I know, you’re probably waiting anxiously for the recipe, so let’s just dive in! If you’re interested in making another similar dish with phyllo dough, I also have a recipe for Chicken Spanakopita.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Sauerkraut Börek

Course Appetizer, brunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Baking Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 people

Ingredients

  • homemade ohyllo dough (recipe below) or 500g store bought phyllo dough
  • 1 kg thinly cut sauerkraut
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 TBSP paprika
  • 1 TBSP turmeric
  • crushed black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 tsp anis seeds
  • 1/4 tsp ground carraway seeds
  • 1 shallot
  • 2 red onion
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • cooking oil for frying the filling, brushing the pan and top the börek
  • 1 small egg + 1 tsp water for egg wash (optional)

Instructions

  1. Finely slice shallots and red onions and fry them on a tablespoon of cooking oil for a few minutes until translucent.

  2. Finely slice or crush the garlic. Add to the pan and fry for an extra two to three minutes.

  3. Add all the spices and fry for another minute.

  4. Drain the sauerkraut. Taste the sauerkraut to see how sour it is. If you find it too sour for your liking, you can wash it quickly under running water and then leave it to drain.

  5. Add drained sauerkraut to the pan and fry on medium heat for about 20 minutes. It should become a bit dryer and softer.

  6. Divide the filling phyllo dough into the same amount of parts as you have phyllo dough sheets.

  7. Spread one part of the filling onto one sheet of phyllo dough, but cover only one third starting from the edge. Start rolling from the side, where he filling is, then roll it.

  8. Shape it into a snail shape and continue filling another sheet of phyllo pastry. You can either add it to the snail, to ultimately create a large börek or create small separate böreks. If you create separate böreks, reduce baking time for 5-10 minutes.

  9. Generously oil the pan you'll be using to bake and place the börek onto the pan.

  10. Brush some oil on top of the börek. If you're doing an egg-wash, brush it over oiled börek.

  11. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C (350°F) for 30 minutes.

Homemade Phyllo Dough

Prep Time 15 minutes
Resting + Stereching Time 1 hour 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 500 g high protein white flour (all-purpose flour works as well)
  • 300 g water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 TBSP olive oil (omit if you're using all-purpose flour)

Instructions

  1. Sift flour into a large bowl.

  2. Make a well and pour in the water. Add salt and oil to the water.

  3. Start mixing from the center with your fingers. It will be sticky, but once it all comes together it will go off your hands easily.

  4. Mix until you can see the dough coming together a bit, then you can start kneading to incorporate the flour in. Every flour needs a different amount of water, so you might end up adding more flour or leaving some flour in the bowl at the end.

  5. When the dough starts to become uniform transfer (this will usually take somewhere from 3-4 minutes) it to the bench and continue kneading for another 8 minutes. The dough should be soft and uniform. It will stick to your hands just a little bit, that's okay. If it sticks too much add a little more flour and knead it in.

  6. You can either leave the dough whole and end up creating a large piece of phyllo. I prefer dividing it into three parts, to make it easier when I'm stretching.

  7. Whatever method you use. Place the dough into an oiled bowl (or three oiled bowls) brush a little oil over the dough and cover with plastic wrap right on the dough. Leave to rest for at least 30 minutes. You can prepare the dough a day before, and store it in the fridge, then take it out and leave it at room temperature for at least an hour before proceeding.

  8. After resting, place a large sheet onto the table and generously sprinkle it with flour. Place the dough onto the floured sheet and roll it out a little bit. If I'm making one large dough I like to roll it out to about 40 cm (15 inches) or 20 cm (8 inches) if I divide the dough into three parts. The precise measurements don't really matter, just to give you a rough idea. Generously pour oil over the rolled dough and brush all over the surface. Be sure to cover the edges too. This will prevent the dough from drying out. Cover with a tea towel and leave to rest for 20 minutes so the gluten relaxes.

  9. After that, you can start stretching. Make sure you cover a large area of the sheet with flour, so the dough will not stick.

  10. Place your hands under the dough and gently pull towards yourself. You will immediately see stretching happening. Move around the dough and to the same. Make sure, that you don't stretch the parts that are already very thin and continue stretching the thicker parts. In the end, you will end with edges that are a little bit thicker. You can continue stretching them for as long as the dough can handle it.

  11. Leave the dough to dry for a minute or two then you can start adding the filling.

These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.
These delicious layers of crispy phyllo dough and soft fragrant sauerkraut flavor of this sauerkraut börek are a perfect side dish or a meal on its own.

The Softest Sourdough Doughnuts

Once you’ve tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you’ll never try any other! This one-and-a-half-day recipe is well worth the time it takes.

Once you've tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you'll never try any other! This one and a half day recipe is well worth the time it takes.

Here in Slovenia, we’ve had our carnival festival these past few days. And there is no carnival without some soft and fluffy doughnuts. Just like last year, I’ve made my sourdough doughnuts. While the ones from last year were okay considering I made them just a month after making my first sourdough starter or ever baking anything sourdough. However, the ones that I made this year were to die for!

I’m not exaggerating. The perfect size, the perfect shape, the softerst texture and the sweetest flavor. So good!

Lessons I’ve learned about sourdough in a year have paid off.

So if this is the first time making sourdough doughnuts, my number one advice is to be patient. There’s a lot of waiting involved and it’s easy to get very excited and not leaving the dough to rest or rise long enough. You just wanna go in there and work, right? However, it is really important to just watch your dough and wait, without really looking at the clock. This is also the reason there’s no very specific time frame in my recipe. The fermentation works very differently at different temperatures.

I will share my times and temperatures just so you can have some ideas of how long you should really wait.

One more thing. Be gentle with your dough. The more gentle you’ll be the more air will stay inside your dough, creating the sof center.

And the second thing, make sure to create enough dough strength so it can hold its shape. This is especially important when you’re shaping doughnuts into small balls. Take your time!

Note: if you’re not the sourdough type, I also have a very delicious yeast doughnut recipe here.

Okay scroll down for my timetable 🙂

Once you've tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you'll never try any other! This one and a half day recipe is well worth the time it takes.
Once you've tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you'll never try any other! This one and a half day recipe is well worth the time it takes.
Once you've tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you'll never try any other! This one and a half day recipe is well worth the time it takes.

My sourdough doughnuts making timetable:

9 am – First Levain Feeding

9 am – 3 pm levain fermenting at a variable temperature from 23-25 °C until doubled in size

3 pm – Second Levain Feeding

3 pm – 8:30 pm levain fermenting at a variable temperature from 23-25 °C until doubled in size

8:30 pm – Making the dough (first mixing, resting, kneading, first coil fold)

9 pm – 10 pm – Bulk ferment at 23-25°C (I did a coil fold at 9:30 pm and 10 pm)

10 pm – Transfering the dough into the fridge (with around 8°C)

10 pm – 8 am – Bulk ferment in the fridge

8 am – Moving the dough back to room temperature

8 am – 11 am – Bulk ferment at 23-25°C (I waited for the dough to get to room temperature)

11 am – Shaping

11 am – 9 pm – Proofing at 23-26°C (I waited for the doughnuts to double in size!)

9pm – Frying and eating two hot doughnuts 🙂

Once you've tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you'll never try any other! This one and a half day recipe is well worth the time it takes.
Once you've tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you'll never try any other! This one and a half day recipe is well worth the time it takes.
Once you've tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you'll never try any other! This one and a half day recipe is well worth the time it takes.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

The Softest Sourdough Doughnuts

Adapted from sourdoughmania.com

Servings 20 small doughnuts
Author Anja Burgar

Ingredients

Sweet Levain – First Feeding

  • 20 g water at room temperature
  • 50 g strong white flour (all-purpose flour works as well)
  • 10 g sourdough starter (100% hydration)
  • 10 g white sugar

Sweet Levain – Second Feeding

  • 40 g water at room temperature
  • 90 g strong white flour
  • 20 g white sugar

Dough

  • 400 g strong white flour
  • 120 g milk room temperature
  • 2 larger eggs room temperature
  • 70 g white sugar
  • 4 g salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla seeds or vanilla extract
  • 60 g softened unsalted butter room temperature

Instructions

Levain Feedings

  1. First Feeding: Mix all ingredients for the first levain feeding. Mix just enough for all ingredients to bind. No need for kneading.

  2. Let sit at room temperature until the levain doubles in size. Anywhere from 21-28°C or 60-178°F is okay, but keep in mind that the levain will mature quicker at higher temperatures. This stage should take anywhere from 3-10 hours.

  3. Second Feeding: After the levain has doubled in size, it is time to feed it the second time. Add water to a bowl and shred in your levain. Mix a little to dissolve the levain. It won't dissolve entirely. Add all other feeding ingredients and knead just enough to make the levain come together in a dough.

  4. Let sit at room temperature until the levain doubles in size. Anywhere from 21-28°C or 60-178°F is okay, but keep in mind that the levain will mature quicker at higher temperatures. This stage should take anywhere from 3-10 hours.

Dough

  1. For the times and temperatures I used for this recipe, check the article!

  2. Making the dough: After the levain has doubled in size the second time, it's time to mix our dough.

  3. Dissolve the levain in milk.

  4. Add flour, sugar, eggs and vanilla seeds or vanilla extract.

  5. Using a stand mixer, mix the dough just enough to bring the ingredients together. Leave covered for 10-15 minutes.

  6. After resting, add salt and knead the dough in a stand mixer for 8 minutes.

  7. Then add softened butter and knead until the dough can pass the windowpane test (link to see how the windowpane test works in the recipe notes). The dough will separate at first, but will come back together quickly.

  8. Bulk ferment: Transfer the dough to your bulk ferment container and do a coil fold (link to the coil fold method in the recipe notes).

  9. Cover the container and leave to ferment until doubled in size. This should take anywhere from 4-10 hours at room temperature. You can do a part of the bulk ferment in the fridge to slow the ferment. Do a coil fold every 30 minutes for the first two hours.

  10. Shaping: After the dough has risen about 50% in size, transfer it to your counter, but be very gentle to not release too much air from the dough.

  11. Divide the dough into 50g pieces and roll them into small balls. Make sure to create enough tension on the balls so they keep a nice shape.

  12. Proofing: Leave the doughnuts to rise at room temperature until doubled in size. This stage will take anywhere from 8-12 hours depending on the temperature.

  13. Frying: After the doughnuts have doubled in size, prepare the oil for frying.

  14. Use about 1 inch or 2.5 cm of oil and fry at a temperature between 160-170°C (320-340°F). A good indicator the temperature is perfect is to check with a wooden spoon. If little bubbles start to form around the spoon handle the oil is ready to go.

  15. Place doughnuts top side down in hot oil, but prior to that brush away the flour. A lot of flour will burn your oil and it will not be re-usable. Fry the doughnuts for about 3 minutes covered. When they turn golden, turn them around away from yourself, so you don’t burn yourself! Fry for about 3 more minutes on the other side uncovered.

  16. Transfer the doughnuts to a plate covered with paper towels to drain the excess oil. Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool.

  17. Fill and decorate to your liking. Enjoy!

Notes

Link to the windowpane test here.

Link to the coil fold method here.

Once you've tasted these irresistibly soft and fluffy sourdough doughnuts, you'll never try any other! This one and a half day recipe is well worth the time it takes.

Elderflower And Passion Fruit Gin And Tonic

Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine’s day twist.

Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine's day twist.

Did you notice that Valentine’s day is next week!!!??

Luckily I have a lovely cocktail ready for a romantic dinner. Even though most of the world is still in one or another form of lockdown, we still deserve some splurging, right?

A nice dinner with the best dessert ever. And of course this elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic!

I love gin and tonic because it’s so easy to make. Basically, all you need to do is add some ice in your cocktail glass, add all the ingredients and enjoy 🙂

This time, I’ve given it a bit sweeter twist with fresh passion fruit, which I absolutely love, and homemade elderflower syrup. However, if you don’t have a homemade one, a storebought is just as fine.

This combination of flavors and sweetness with the biterness of gin and tonic is in my opinion the biggest selling point of this cocktail.

If this floral flavor is not your jam, I have a more citrusy grapefruit gin and tonic recipe as well.

Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine's day twist.
Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine's day twist.

A good gin and tonic is made with quality gin and quality tonic as well. Keep in mind that your gin and tonic will only be as good as the ingredients put in. This doesn’t mean you need to go with the most expensive stuff. However, the cheapest plastic bottle drinks are probably lower quality than you want in a gin and tonic. So, I encourage you to explore, which flavors you like.

Most of simple gin and tonics include some amount of citrus flavor. For my Valentine’s day elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic, I passed on adding citruses. I used my elderflower syrup that already included some lemons. Most elderflower syrups do.

Plus, I really wanted to create a more feminine floral/tropical cocktail. But, if you feel like adding a hint of citrus go ahead and squeeze in a bit of lemon juice!

Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine's day twist.
Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine's day twist.
Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine's day twist.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Elderflower And Passion Fruit Gin And Tonic

Course Cocktail, Drinks
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 1 cocktail

Ingredients

  • ice
  • 2 ounces quality gin (1/4 cup / 60ml)
  • 4 ounces quality tonic water (1/2 cup / 120ml)
  • 1 fresh passion fruit
  • 1-2 tsp elderflower syrup

Instructions

  1. Fill the cocktail glass with ice.

  2. Add the flesh of fresh passion fruit and elderflower syrup to the glass.

  3. Pour over gin and finish with pouring over the tonic.

  4. Gently stir to combine.

Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine's day twist.
Fresh passion fruit and delicious floral elderflower syrup give this refreshing elderflower and passion fruit gin and tonic recipe a sweet valentine's day twist.