Last week, totally an completely unexpected, I completed this goal of my Day Zero Project:
No. 69 – Cook 10 new recipes from 10 different cookbooks.
Let’s see which recipes helped me reach this goal! Click on the links to read the articles beloning to each cookbook.
Cookbook 1 – Tapas & andere overheerlijke hapjes
(Title translation: Tapas & other delicious snacks)
Remember my Christmas post? Last year we had a little unconventional Christmas. While every other Dutch person would have their whole family gathering around their electric table-top grill (yes, at Christmas we like to put tiny pieces of meat into tiny little pans, that’s how we roll), I was cooking tapas for Ruud and my mom. The first recipe I tried was Spicy Stuffed Eggs. I know there’s already a dish named Deviled Eggs, otherwise I would have named my eggs that way. Man, these were hard to peel! But after a lot of hard work and cursing on Christmas Eve, I managed to create some delicious stuffed eggs!
Cookbook 2 – Antipasti – De lekkerste Italiaanse hapjes
(Title translation: Antipasti – The tastiest Italian snacks)
Bocconcini, doesn’t that sound to cute to be true? Apparently, these are tiny little mozzarella balls. So yes, cuteness is written all over them! I chose the recipe Marinated Bocconcini. Marinating them was a great idea, because mozzarella can be a little tasteless on its own, don’t you think? But with this marinate and prosciutto wrapped around them, they were absolutely awesome!
Cookbook 3 – Tapas – Een klassieke collectie Spaanse recepten
(Title translation: Tapas – A classic collection of Spanish recipes)
Still Christmas Eve, still cooking tapas. And from this cookbook, I didn’t choose one, but three recipes! I was on a roll that day!
The first recipe was Chorizo in Red Wine. I started cooking this dish the day before, because the recipe told me this dish would taste best when marinated overnight. To be honest, you can stuff me with chorizo any time of the day, whether it’s baked or not. Man, you can even wake me up for it in the middle of the night. But this version, marinated and cooked in red wine? Oh. My. God. This surpasses every chorizo dish I’ve tried in the past. This was orgasmic.
So if you’re so fond of chorizo, what better idea could one think of then to make another chorizo dish? I tried a dish that sounded super weird: Chorizo, Artichoke and Melon Salad. I love every single ingredient I just mentioned, but I had no idea what these would taste like together. It seemed so strange. But somehow it made the cookbook, so it had to be special in a good way, right? I’m glad I try out weird stuff from time to time. This salad had a really nice taste! Yes, it was kinda strange, but also very fresh with a rich taste.
A tapas dish that is always successful is Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes. Usually I would simply stuff them with some feta cheese. Delicious, but a bit boring. So this time I tried a stuffing made from aioli, olives and capers. Did I just tell you the Chorizo en Red Wine was orgasmic? Well, apparently, this stuffing was as well! It was even better as a spread on my bread the next day. I haven’t made it since, but now I remember that I definitely should!
Cookbook 4 – 500 Sappen en Smoothies
(Original title: 500 Smoothies and Juices)
A couple of days after Christmas, I decided it was time to bring one of my Christmas presents to good use. Ruud had given me this cookbook and it fitted both this goal as the health goals of my list! My attention was drawn to Banana Fig Smoothie right away. Figs in a smoothie, who would think of that? It was the best idea ever. It gave my smoothie a deliciously sweet taste, without the use of any sugar!
Cookbook 5 – Kip & Gevogelte
(Original title: Chicken and Poultry)
Turkey in Chestnut Sauce, doesn’t that sound amazing? The perfect winter dish. Except… This dish didn’t really tasted like chestnut very much. It may have had something to do with the sauce being thinner than soup… I was really disappointed by this dish. What I didn’t know was if it was the cookbook’s fault or mine. Maybe I just made a mistake? So I cooked it again.
I improved the recipe somewhat by adding the broth more slowly. However, it was still not very chestnutty. Well, not every recipe can be a success, right? It did get me halfway through my goal, though.
Cookbook 6 – Ik Kook in de Oven
(Translation: I Cook Oven Dishes)
Well, if the first turkey dish fails, you just try out another one, right? After all, it was never the turkey’s fault that my last recipe was a failure. So I cooked Turkey Filet with Basil and Ham. Ham always is a good idea, as is basil. This couldn’t go wrong, right? Right! This dish totally rocked!
Cookbook 7 – Coca Cola – 30 Verrassende Recepten
(Original title: 30 recettes gourmandes sucrées et salées)
Cooking with coke! Who would have thought it was possible? I couldn’t imagine how anything cooked with coke would taste like, but I knew I loved coke. And as I said before, I like to try out crazy foods. So I made Caramelized Pork Curry. It was one of the best things I ever cooked. It had such a special sweetness, I had never tasted anything like that before! Of course, 800 ml of coke is not the best thing to be having during a diet, so I will probably not cook this for quite some time. But one day, I will make sure to have this on my plate again.
Cookbook 8 – Dutch Cooking – The New Kitchen
I thought it would be nice to try out a dish from my own country. Most of the time Dutch cuisine is dull, tasteless and seriously overcooked. But some recipes are nice in theory. And some typical Dutch ingredients are very interesting. Such as cheese. Oh my god, cheese. The Cheese Soup from the book sounded like heaven to me. And I had never made soup before in my entire life, so it was about time, don’t you think? So I cooked heaven on a plate and heaven tasted like cheese fondue. So good!
Cookbook 9 – Smart Food Small Bites
It’s nice to have a cookbook with party food recipes laying around. That way you can always serve your party guests something special. There is one downside however… You’ll have to have a party in order to use the book. Or… You could just find a way around it by altering the quantities in the recipes a bit. Which is exactly what I did with the dish Cinnamon Drumsticks with Couscous. Less drumsticks, same amount of couscous and more vegetables. The drumsticks were okay, but not to die for. The couscous however was absolutely awesome! Next time I’ll ditch the drumsticks and serve the couscous with falafel instead.
Cookbook 10 – Garnalen
(Original title: The Ubiquitous Shrimp)
The curry with coke was the first curry I had ever made in my entire life. I decided it was time to extend my curry knowledge a bit. I absolutely love mango, so it was only logical to try out the dish Mango Shrimp Curry. The mango actually had to be mashed and added to the sauce. This was a terrific idea! The sauce was so sweet and fresh! The dish didn’t contain any vegetables (and I didn’t add any either because I figured the fruit counted as well). I’m so glad I hadn’t added them anyway, because it would have made the dish less powerful. Each ingredient had its own subtle but powerful taste. This dish was perfectly balanced.
Cookbook 11 – Serendip
Save the best for last. Great plan, but make sure you can count properly. Otherwise, you’ll get disappointed in the end. Like I was. I mean, look at that book! Isn’t it pretty? Well, besides pretty it’s also freakin’ awesome! It’s written by a man raised in Sri Lanka. The whole cookbook contains authentic family recipes, based on the Sri Lankan cuisine. Each dish looks so special, it wouldn’t be hard at all to find an amazing dish to end this goal with. Except that… My goal was already reached. Because I couldn’t count to ten properly. Well, I’ll just make it eleven then! Yes, I’ve reached my goal, my pig has been fed already. But no-one is going to stop me from cooking something from this book and blog about it anyway, right? Right! So next month, I’m planning on making a delicious dish from this book to celebrate this goal! Stay tuned! It’s gonna be legen – wait for it – dary!