May Day Treat: Wheat-Rye Bread

Happy May Day! I hope most of you are luckier than me and actually have the day off. If not, I feel for you. But hey, what better way to celebrate International Workers’ Day than by working? Exactly. Great Monday motivation right there.

For those of you who do get to spend the day lounging in your pyjamas – how about being a tad productive and making a fresh loaf of bread for brunch/lunch? Homemade bread beats any store-bought equivalent and is so easy. So easy. You just have to make sure your yeast is fresh (do NOT use dry yeast) and not past it’s sell by date, then I guarantee nothing can go wrong. But be warned: once you have mastered the art of bread making it’s hard to stop due to deliciousness. One of my friends made 4 loaves in one week. No joke. Trust me, you’ll understand as soon as you succeed yourself. So get out of bed and get baking! Your guests will be oh so pleased.

Wheat-Rye Bread

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inspired by the one and only Ace
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Emergency Room Tales

I’m currently half way through my second week of exciting emergency room escapades after having officially switched sides. Yes, I no longer belong to team red (i.e. surgery), I am blue through and through. Now, is that a good or a bad thing? Not too sure yet. One thing I do know is that team red has a higher number of patients with, let’s call it, “more entertaining” medical histories. A few examples to brighten your Easter weekend:
One guy came in because, as an act of pleasure, he had forced dried beans up his urethra. Creative. He didn’t quite think this through and sadly didn’t manage to get them all back out. Lucky for him a urologist did.
Another patient (whom I have complete sympathy with and have definitely been close to the same dilemma a few times in my life) superglued his thumb and middle finger together. Ouch!
The best for last: someone presented with blood in the stool after having had a wild night. During the evening this person apparently had a drunken epiphany – “glass vases must be great for pleasurable moments”. That’s right – the poor glass vase ended the night in said person’s rectum. What’s more, it didn’t see the light of day until 24 hours later, when it was reborn in an operating theatre.
That being said, the blue side of the emergency room has been lot’s of fun so far, I have learnt and seen a great number of things. The next few months will be exciting. Also, the anti-social shifts finally give me more time to get creative in the kitchen. Yay! In celebration of the rhubarb season I attempted a light compote, which can easily accompany a brunch or can be served as dessert with some ice cream. Mhhhmmmmm.

Strawberry Rhubarb Compote

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adapted from Wildeisen

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Queueing Failures

Happy Saint Nicholas’ Day, a.k.a another one of my favorite days of the year. I hope your stockings were filled with exciting presents and delicious chocolates. Today is one of the few days where people actually queue for something in Switzerland. Queueing for restaurants, bakerys, theatres, etc. isn’t a thing here unlike in London, Manhattan, Sydney, you name it. My most recent queuing failure in London was an attempt to eat at the new Thai place in town – Som Saa. We arrived at 18:30, the wait would have been 2.5 hours…  I then inquired at what time one would have to realistically come to grab a table for “normal dinner times”. The answer: 17:00. Seriously?? Who has time for that?!?

Anyways, one thing the Swiss have understood is the uselessness and inefficiency of queuing. Apart from today – my next queuing failure. On Saint Nicholas’ day, Swiss tradition is to eat a Grättimaa – sweet brioche-like bread heaven shaped like a man, the Grättimaa. If you don’t want to make them yourself, the go to bakery to buy these in town is Gilgen. Naively, I went by early afternoon thinking the rest of the world must be working – my was I taken by surprise – there were 2 queues going right out the door past the next shop! And what’s the magic of queues? They attract more and more people, because whatever is at the end must be good. The beauty of it all – some queuers didn’t even know what they were in line for! By the time I finally managed to order, I whipped out my debit card (having just returned from ‘merica where everything is paid for by card) only to hear the words: “Sorry, our card machine is broken today”. MAJOR FAIL. So I queued for nothing…. at least I know how to make them myself and I can decide on the appropriate sugar to bread ratio ;-).

Give it a go and let me know what you think.

Grättimaa

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adapted from SRF
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Hazelnut Rolls

T-2 days until I am officially unemployed for 2 months! Scary! Anyone have a guide to leading the life of a pensioner?
In my hospital, tradition calls for junior doctors to spoil their co-workers with a sweet breakfast sometime around their last day of work. Another compulsory “cake baking” moment in the life of a junior doctor, respectively surgeon in training, is after being allowed to operate something for the first time. There is an unwritten rule stating one has to bring a cake after each new surgical achievement. Sneaky, sneaky surgeons. Now, instead of always bringing cake, I figured I could be creative and bring rolls. Who doesn’t like rolls? My personal favorite – cinnamon rolls – would be a tad too intense for my Swiss colleagues to digest at 8 am. So I decided to stay on the safe side and made these hazelnut rolls – NOM. Secret ingredient: a hint of cinnamon, obvs.

Nussschnecken – Hazelnut Rolls

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Citrus and Berries

Happy Summer to you all!!! I hope you are all soaking up some sun and working on the tan;-) And so sorry for not posting….. this seems to follow my last years trend of not posting during this time of year either…. work and life just seem to have sucked me in and kept me farfar away from WordPress. Slowly I am having withdrawal symptoms -.-. Time to catch up. And what better way to begin the new recipe season than with a delicious french citrusy inspired dessert? Yes, I know my last post was about the Champagne Region and now I’m talking about France again… you must think I am french crazy. So. Not. True. But, quite frankly, they do know how to enjoy life with excellent cuisine – the wine, the ham, the endless fruit markets, not to forget the daily fresh baguette, the seafood and of course all the pâtisserie mmhhhmmmmm. My current favourite français dessert: Tarte au citron +/- meringuée. NOM. I cannot get enough of that goodness!

When recently invited to an Apéro Riche in the Basque Region, I, being me, immediately offered to bring a dessert, with Tarte au citron on the back of my mind. Admittedly, a Tarte is not the best for a standing dinner, but, nevertheless, I was determined to make lemon curd play the lead role. What did I end up with? A sharp lemon curd topped with a refreshing berry coulis and wild berries. The guests loved it. Let me know what you think:-)

 Lemon Curd with Berry Coulis

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Swedish Cardamom Buns/Rolls

HAPPY EASTER!!!!

I hope you all spent the past few days indulging in ridiculous amounts of chocolate eggs, hot cross buns and tasty roast lamb. If not, don’t worry, you still have one day left to catch up;-). And congratulations to everyone who successfully completed Lent yesterday – now go and do or eat whatever you have been painfully missing out on these past 46 days!

This year’s Easter has been, apart from spending some of the days surrounded by IV-drips, syringes and wounds, all dressed up in scrubs (yes – some people actually have to work on bank holidays), an unhealthy brunch crawl for me. Nothing wrong with brunching 4 days in a row is there?

For the final brunch of the lot I decided to bake something slightly different than your usual, with a Scandinavian touch – Cardamom Rolls. NOM! As I already mentioned in a previous post – Cardamom is the new Cinnamon. If I haven’t won you over yet, I’m sure baking these will. I’m also sure half of you have been invited to yet another an Easter brunch for today, said they would bring something and popped into M&S for some hot cross buns. If so – tut tut tut – freeze your bought buns and make these! Everyone will love them!!

Swedish Cardamom Rolls

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The Medical Gourmet’s (Perfect) Cinnamon Rolls

Here is a post for all you nocturnal readers out there. Working hours in the surgical profession aren’t your standard 9 to 5 with a one hour lunch break. They are more like 7 to 7 with a 15 minute lunch break (if you’re lucky). Or the even better (not) shifts are the night shifts – 8pm to 8am with ha, wait for it, officially no calculated break – which normal functioning human being could survive that? This past week I had my first night shift after two night free years – dear god does your body protest. You’re tired all the time no matter how much sleep you get. You have the hugest eye bags all the time – make up resistant might I add. You’re hungry all the time – literally, I never thought waking up from hunger is a thing…. trust me… it is and it sucks! Additionally, ER’s attract strange people after dark…. who shows up at 2 am with a painful wrist 5 weeks post falling on it?? Seriously. Well, at least these people are kind enough to keep me busy 🙂

Anyways, to combat my constant hunger whilst on nights I decided to pre-make a batch of cinnamon rolls. In the past I have tried many recipes but none were satisfying enough. Until now. Just in time for my week of nocturnal binge eating I managed to create the perfect combination of doughy fluffyness with a heavenly cinnamony filling. Nom.

Cinnamon Rolls

cinnamon pecan rolls with lemon creamcheese frosting

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