For Blue Jelly Beans

“The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you’ve got to have a what-the-hell attitude.”
― Julia Child

* * * * *

I cook very good, /so they say :)/ but it’s not a passion that I have. When it comes to food I’m a very easy going person and I prefer plain meals that don’t involve turning the whole kitchen up-side-down and washing half of the dishes in the cupboards after the food has been prepared and eaten.

One of the reasons I love summer is that I can eat salads for 3-4 months and I don’t need a major cooking, unless is absolutely necessary. I like cooking for friends when they visit me, but to make a whole menu only for myself … not me. But I know many people who love the preparation of the meal, the tasting, the conversation about the steps in the recipe.

This post is for my blogging friend Giovanna from Blue Jelly Beans. I like visiting her blog and reading about the meals she offers, because it’s obvious, everything she does involves passion and creativity. So here are two of my favorite recipes that I’ve tried several times, I hope Giovanna will try them too and make nice posts with images and everything else beautiful that she does at her blog.

`

Cider Chicken with Tagliatelle

The recipe is by Patrick Anthony, from the “Ready Steady Cook” book that I have/ a great book btw/

  • 400 g tagliatelle
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 400 g chicken breasts, skinless, cut into chunks
  • 210 ml dry cider
  • 1 1/2 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 15 g butter
  • 1 large leek, halved lengthways and finely sliced across
  • 80 g mushrooms, sliced
  • 100 ml double cream
  • 1 tbsp chives, snipped to garnish

Cook tagliatelle to packet instructions.  Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and fry chicken for 8 minutes, turning occasionally, until golden all round.  Add cider and mustard.  Season and simmer for 5-7 minutes until slightly reduced.

Melt butter in a pan, add remaining oil and cook leek for 3 minutes.  Add mushrooms and cook for another 2 minutes. Add leek and mushrooms to chicken, stir in cream and simmer for 2 minutes.

Toss cider chicken with tagliatelle.  Garnish with chives. You can serve this meal with green salad and garlic and herb bread.

`

Triple Chocolate Cheesecake

The recipe is by Nick Nairn, from “Ready Steady Cook”

For the biscuit base:

  • vegetable oil, for greasing
  • ½ tsp ground mixed spice
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 orange, grated zest only
  • 125 g plain chocolate digestive biscuits, crushed
  • 55 g butter, melted

For the cheesecake:

  • 125 g white chocolate
  • 225 g full-fat cream cheese
  • 142 ml carton double cream
  • 2 tbsp brandy
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • cocoa powder, to dust or do like I do, decorate with raspberries

Lightly oil 4 x 10 cm pastry cutter and put on an oiled baking sheet. For the base, mix the zest, spice, cinnamon and biscuits. Stir in melted butter and divide mixture between the 4 cutters. Press down with the back of a spoon. Chill.

For the cheesecake, melt chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water. Remove from heat. In a bowl beat cream cheese until smooth. Beat in chocolate. Whip cream, brandy and sugar together and fold into cream cheese mixture. Spoon on to biscuit base and level with the back of a spoon. Chill until firm.

Dust with cocoa powder before serving or decorate with berries/ which is what I do/.

`

Image found via Google search

`
Bon Appétit!

Visit Giovanna’s blog bluejellybeans.wordpress.com, I’m sure there will be a delicious moment for each of you!

`

All time favorite

For those who haven’t read about the challenge, here is the link to the post with details –
Season’s favorite challenge.

~*~*~*~*~*~

All time favorite

– Word –

Freedom – the state of being free  or at liberty rather than in confinement or under physical restraint; exemption from external control, interference, regulation, etc.; the power to determine action without restraint.

– Quote –

” For it was not into my ear you whispered, but into my heart. It was not my lips you kissed, but my soul.”
~ Judy Garland

"Clarity" by Sonam Mandal

– Poem –

Invictus

by William Ernest Henley

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

– Book –

“A place called freedom” by Ken Follett

Set in 1767, historical fiction story about young coal miner from Scotland who believes there must be more to life than working down the pit. The miner, Mack McAsh, eventually runs away in order to find work and a new life in London, where he becomes a leader amongst the working classes of the city and becomes a target for those who do not share his point of view. McAsh is framed for a crime he did not commit and sent to serve seven years hard labour in the colony of Virginia where he is forced to find a new life.

After I read the book, there was a period of 4-5 months that I couldn’t read another book. The spirit and the strength of the character had impressed me so much that nothing else could fit in the box of  “good to read”. Ken Follett is favorite author, I like all his work, but this one is a masterpiece in my opinion!

– Song –

I’m in trouble here, it’s going to be difficult to choose only one song.

I have weakness for songs with voices like Whitney Houston and Leona Lewis.

Whitney Houston – I look to you

Leona Lewis – Lost then found

But I also crazy love music with Spanish lyrics and tango rhythm, so much that I’ve found out, it makes me speechless and unproductive when it comes to poetry.

Cristina Aguilera – El beso del final

Ricky Martin – Juramento

Shakira – Tango Objection

After my first trip to Egypt I discovered Arabic music, it has such dreamy sounds, my favorite Arabic song is

Tamally maak/ I’m always with you/ – Amr Diab

And of course my last very dear discoveries-

Muse – Neutron star collision- Love is forever

Poets of the fall – Where do we draw the line

This is my “all time favorite list” for now, tomorrow who knows what might be on it. Today I’ll share with you Eric Clapton and “Tears in heaven”.

Uploaded on YouTube by

– Movie –

“Shawshank redemption”

Two imprisoned men bond over a number of years, finding solace and eventual redemption through acts of common decency. Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman have done such a great acting! It’s one of those creations where I better say nothing but – see it if you haven’t, there is no other movie like it!

My favorite quotes from the movie:

“The first night’s the toughest, no doubt about it. They march you in naked as the day you were born, skin burning and half blind from that delousing shit they throw on you, and when they put you in that cell… and those bars slam home… that’s when you know it’s for real. A whole life blown away in the blink of an eye. Nothing left but all the time in the world to think about it. “ ~ Red / Morgan Freeman/

“… some birds aren’t meant to be caged. Their feathers are just too bright. And when they fly away, the part of you that knows it was a sin to lock them up DOES rejoice. But still, the place you live in is that much more drab and empty that they’re gone. “ ~ Red / Morgan Freeman/

It’s all about freedom, it always has been for me! I’m still looking for my own freedom and when there isn’t even a hint of it, watching this movie again and again does help, a little!

– Town –

I’m not sure if I have all time favorite town, being an absolute traveling soul, for me the best will be if I am every month in a different town, in a different country. Maybe one day I will settle down, but for now The World is my all time favorite place and I want to see every single inch of it.

– Animal –

Horse

– Flower –

White roses – give me one from your heart and I am yours forever …

– Food –

Cheesecake

Dear, yummy biscuits
with enchanting scent of cinnamon,
don’t hesitate and get into your best dresses.

Meet Mr. Wonderfully Melted Butter,
dance on the heart-shaped tray to exhaustion
and settle for a dreamy sleep.

I will weave a blanket
from a cheesy, cozy mixture and
a drop of tasty lemon to keep you safe all night.

Strawberries for good luck,
I’ll lead you to the Indesit fridge and
don’t worry, I won’t share you with anybody.

– Image –

"Crane" by Sonam Mandal

I’m really fond of Sonam’s photography!

~*~*~*~*~*~

Thank you everyone for taking part in the challenge, it was incredible to read all your thoughts! Please leave the link to your posts in the comment section, you will have one week / July 30- August 6/ to do that. If you wish to read how others formed their thoughts into a season’s post, have a look at the comment section, I will make sure to include everyone joining!

Stay tuned for the last post connected to this challenge – Season winners – August 6, when I’ll make a post about favorites from your posts!

`

© 2011  Broken Sparkles

`

Cheesy dance

Cheesecake

Dear, yummy biscuits
with enchanting scent of cinnamon,
don’t hesitate and get into your best dresses.

Meet Mr. Wonderfully Melted Butter,
dance on the heart-shaped tray to exhaustion
and settle for a dreamy sleep.

I will weave a blanket
from a cheesy, cozy mixture and
a drop of tasty lemon, to keep you safe all night.

Strawberries for good luck,
a lead to the Indesit fridge and
don’t worry, I won’t share you with anybody.

`

"Cheesecake" by microgrooves on deviantart.com

`

© 2011  Broken Sparkles