Pască Tanti Vali (traditional Romanian cheesecake)

March 31, 2013

This is actually 3 recipes in one, hopefully it’s not too complicated.


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March 31, 2013


  • 6 egg yolks
  • 6 spoons of sugar
  • 400g lady fingers
  • 400g Mascarpone cheese
  • 500g whipped cream
  • 2 small bags of vanilla sugar (2 x 7-9g)
  • some cacao
  • amaretto liquor
  • 10 little cups of espresso (or decaf espresso, or instant espresso) mixed with 4 tea spoons of sugar


  • a high rectangular plastic/glass tray


  • Make the coffee, add the 4 tea spoons of sugar and let it cool down.
  • Stir the yolks with the sugar in a large container until the sugar melts, then add the cheese little by little.
  • Whip the cream in a separate container. Keep 1/3 of it for decorating and incorporate the remaining 2/3 little by little into the cream.
  • Pass the ends of the lady fingers quickly through the coffee, then put into the tray. Once you’re done with a complete layer of lady fingers pour half of the cream, then lay another layer of lady fingers rotated by 90 degrees (perpendicular wrt the first layer). Then put the other half of the cream and at the end the 1/3 of the whipped cream.
  • Put in the fridge for a couple of hours.
  • Before serving, put cacao on top through a small sieve.

Pâté à la Valironrons

February 23, 2013

Here is a wonderful pâté recipe we have from our French friends. You need a meet grinder, but otherwise it’s not hard to make.

Ingredients (1 pound ~= 450g):

  • 1 pound of chicken liver (or of any other poultry)
  • 1/2 pound of bacon
  • 1/2 pound of boneless pork
  • 1 big bunch of parsley
  • 1 egg
  • 8g of salt (1/2 tablespoon)
  • and then, at wish: black pepper, garlic, mustard, coriander (cilantro), juniper, clove, pistachios,…
  • Preparation: Grind everything*, homogenize, and put in a rectangular baking dish. Cook in the oven in a bain-marie for about 1h:30min at 380F (~193C). Cool down before serving.

    [*] Grinding chicken liver works best if it’s slightly frozen, otherwise the process is a bit messy.

Bert’s Fish Soup

December 11, 2010


  • Vegetables: Bell peppers, parsley, fenel, celery sticks, leek, chives, garlic
  • Fish stock (you can make it yourself by cooking some fish heads for a couple of hours; you can also make it from shrimp shells otherwise)
  • Rouille (you can find it online or in French supermarkets; you can also make it yourself from Mayonnaise, garlic, and spices)
  • Fish fillets without bones and skin (cod, plaice, flounder, tilapia)
  • Scallops
  • Shrimps or prawn
  • (optional) Croutons
  • (optional) Grated cheese (e.g. Emmentaler, Gruyère or Parmesan)

Wash, cut and boil the vegetables in a big pot with not too much water. While the vegetables are boiling, pan sear the fish and scallops with butter and Cogniac in the pan and add them round after round to the boiling pot. If the shrimps are red then they are already cooked, so add them like that to the soup, if the shrips are gray then sear them first until they get red. Add the fish stock to the pot, and make it hot but without boiling it. Serve hot with croutons and grated cheese. Dissolve the Rouille into the bowl or spread it on the croutons.

Here are more photos.

How to Cook Rabbit (Now For Real)

May 3, 2008

Here are three of my mother’s recipes for cooking rabbit, translated to English.

First, you don’t really need to stalk, chase and catch the rabbit 🙂 You can find rabbit meat in many super-markets.

Second, you must know that rabbit meat is more tasty if you marinate it before cooking (the only exception is rabbit soup). You make a marinade from water, 4-5 spoons of white wine or vinegar, 3-4 spoons of oil, slices of onion, carrots, and celery, savory, salt and freshly ground black pepper. You put the pieces of meet in this marinade and keep it in the fridge for 2-3 hours. Every now and then you should turn the meat.

Recipe 1. Rabbit Roast in the Oven


  • a rabbit = around 1.5 kg of marinated meat
  • 100g of bacon
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • one onion
  • 100ml of white wine
  • oil and water
  • salt and black pepper

You take the meat from the marinade (the other things you just throw away) and you quickly wash it so that it does not loose it’s flavor. You cut many small “pockets” in the rabbit meat and stuff small pieces of bacon and garlic inside. You put the oil and the pieces of meat in a big casserole, together with the water and the onion cut in tiny pieces. You put the casserole in the oven at 220-200 degrees for 2 – 3 hours. You should add more water if necessary, and when it’s almost done you can also add white wine. You should turn the pieces of meet every half an hour or so.

Recipe 2. Cold Rabbit Dish with Olives


  • 1 kg of marinated rabbit meat
  • 4-5 big onions
  • 20 welsh onions
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 3-4 spoons of olive oil
  • 20 black unsalted olives
  • 2 bay leafs
  • 50-100ml of white wine
  • 4-5 black peppercorns
  • salt

Soften the pieces of marinated rabbit meat on both sides in a pan. Add the cut onion then slowly add warm water. Cover with a lid and let it boil so that the meat becomes tender. Then add the welsh onions cut in small slices, the white wine, the bay leafs and the freshly ground pepper. Let it boil with the lid for a while and add extra water if necessary. When the meat is almost cooked and the sauce is consistent enough you add the garlic, the olives and the olive oil and continue cooking it. When it’s done take it away from the stove and let it become cold. This dish must be served cold!

Recipe 3. Rabbit Stew with Mushrooms


  • 1 kg of marinated rabbit meat
  • 300g of mushrooms
  • 200g of bacon
  • 4-5 onions or 25 welsh onions
  • 3-4 spoons of oil
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 spoon of wheat floor
  • 100ml of white wine
  • parsley
  • savory
  • oil and water
  • salt and black pepper

Lightly fry the bacon, the onion and the mushrooms in a pan with oil. Separately, put the pieces of rabbit meat in a pot, together with some water, the wine, the freshly ground pepper, the parsley, the savory, and the mashed garlic. Boil this with a lid at low temperature until the meat is cooked. When this happens add the bacon, the onion and the mushrooms from the frying pan. Add the floor dissolved in a small cup of water, then boil everything one more time until the sauce becomes consistent enough.

Bon Appétit! 🙂

How to Cook a Rabbit

December 9, 2007

Step 1. Stalk the rabbit

Step 2. Chase the rabbit

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Crème Caramel

September 25, 2007


  • 1 liter milk
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 big cup + 6 spoons of sugar
  • 4 small bags of vanilla sugar (4 x 7-9g)

Special equipment
One 2 liter pot that fits inside a bigger pot with water, that in turn fits into the oven … or some other way to do bain-marie.

If the milk is raw then boil it and let it cool down.

Put the cup of sugar in the 2 liter pot with a spoon of water. Put the pot on a hotplate and stir continuously until the sugar caramelizes and gets a gold-brown color (but not darker as it might give a bitter taste to the cream). After the sugar is caramelized take the pot of the hotplate and tilt it so that the fluid sugar covers all the sides of the pot. Take care not to get burned. Leave the caramelized sugar cool down and get solid again, and don’t get scared by the cracking noise.

Separately mix the eggs whole with the 6 spoons of sugar and the vanilla sugar, then add the boiled and cooled down milk (it is important that the milk is no longer hot!). When the sugar dissolved pour this liquid over the cooled-down caramelized sugar in the 2 liter pot. Put the 2 liter pot inside the bigger one with water, and both of them in the oven for 1h:15min – 1h:30min at 200C (392F). The cream is done when it’s not too wobbly and it detaches from the sides of the pot. Take it out of the oven and let it cool down, then (if you are very brave) turn it upside down on a big plate/bowl.

Enjoy! 🙂


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