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18 October, 2011

Cucumber Salad (gurkensalat)

This delicious and refreshing salad is adapted from a German recipe. It is perfect as an accompaniment to cured sliced meat, barbecue meats and most cheeses. The salt helps soften the cucumber and leech it's juices into the dressing. Delicious!


1 whole cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced
A sprig of mint, finely chopped
A pinch of salt
2 teaspoons of sugar
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup white wine or cider vinegar


In a large bowl combine the cucumber and chopped mint. Add the salt and sugar to the warm water and stir to dissolve. Add the vinegar and the dissolved salt and sugar to the bowl of cucumber and mint, and allow to cool. Decant into an air tight container and store in the fridge overnight to allow the flavours to develop.


An alternate dressing is 2 tablespoons of vinegar and a cup of plain yoghurt mixed with a pinch of salt, 2 teaspoons of honey and the chopped herbs.

You can mix and match herbs to suit your taste. The best ones to use are mint, parsley, and dill.


07 October, 2011

Vegan Shepherd's Pie

Vegan Shepherd's Pie

This recipe is one adapted by my great friend and artist Mai-Coh:

Photo courtesy of Mai-Coh
    1 small or medium onion, chopped
    2 cloves of garlic, mashed
    3 small carrots, chopped
    1/2 cup spinach, chopped
    1 stalk celery, chopped
    1 large tomato, chopped
    2 tbsp olive oil
    1/2 cup cooked or canned green lentils, mashed
    1/2 tsp dried basil
    1/2 tsp salt
    3 medium potatoes, roughly chopped
    1/4 cup soy milk
    1 tbsp margarine or olive oil
    Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 200 degrees C/350 degrees F. In a medium pot of water, boil the chopped potatoes until they can be pierced easily with a fork. In a medium saucepan, sauté the onions, garlic, carrots, spinach, celery, and tomatoes in the oil. Once carrots are tender, add the mashed lentils, basil, salt, and pepper. Stir and simmer without a lid until the liquid cooks off.
Meanwhile, in a food processor or a medium bowl, mash the potatoes, milk, margarine, and salt with a potato masher or fork. Set aside. Pour the vegetable mixture into a lightly oiled pie plate and then layer the mashed potatoes over top. Bake for 15-20 minutes. 

Makes 4-6 servings.