Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Give me your groats

Firstly, props to Bindy- she just finished her exams and came through on her promise to make me a chocolate souffle. It was great - it rose high, was chocolatey and melty. She used this recipe from Recipe Zaar. We thought maybe it wasn't chocolatey enough - but really it was great and enough to give us a big chocolate buzz. Not too hard either - despite all the scary vibes that surround souffle I've never seen one fail.

Lately I’m getting back to my roots – wanting to eat and learn about Polish (and Russian) food. Inspired by another great library book - A Year of Russian Feasts - I've been dreaming of a big feast for my birthday. I'm thinking a massive table spread with zakuski - Polish antipasto. Beetroot salad, pickles, Blini... And lots of vodka. On Sunday I made some infused vodkas to go with the feast - lime, cherry, ginger, honey and cinnamon and chilli flavours.

Feeling all Polish, I decided to made some Kasha for dinner. My Mum hates Kasha(buckwheat) but I think I want to eat more. It's a traditional Polish dish where the grains are cooked like rice and served in many different ways. This recipe is very straightforward and would be great with a big eggplant stew, or served as part of a bigger Eastern European style meal. It'll taste even better if you use wild mushrooms, or a stock based on dried mushrooms - but it's great as is.

Kasha with Musrooms and Leek

  • 1 cup whole buckwheat groats (from a health food store)
  • 1 - 2 leeks, finely sliced
  • 2 - 3 big handfulls of mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cups water or stock
  • 4 - 6 tbsps butter or oil
  • half a cup chopped walnuts, lightly toasted
  • 1 tsp salt
  • sour cream
  1. Melt the butter in a big pot with a good lid.
  2. Fry the buckwheat gently for 2 minutes.
  3. Add the mushrooms and leek and fry until soft - maybe 5 minutes.
  4. Add the water and salt and bring to the boil.
  5. Add the lid and turn the heat down.
  6. Cook for 10 -15 minutes until the groats are cooked through - they shouldn't be chewy or mushy.
  7. Leave to sit (with lid) for 5 minutes.
  8. Serve with the walnuts on top and pass the sour cream.

Mmmm.. yum. Nutty goodness.

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