Happy Sunday!

[photo via] Oh hello, how are you doing? Over the course of the last couple of weeks, I have been seriously playing hookie. This place is really where I go when I feel inspired. There has been a lot of work, travels and general chores, which in many ways takes up so much head space that there is little left for being creative.

Also for that reason, it really feels like the perfect time to unwind and take off on a wildcamping trip (!) to Iceland at the end of this month. I am keeping my fingers crossed that we will catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights. But even without that, I am just incredibly excited to go camping, wander around, play cards and to drink loads of coffee in the fresh air.

Below I am sharing some of the reads that made me happy this week. 🙂

Oh the shade! Obama’s old photographer sharing these warm photos made me giggle.

Until recently, I thought that enjoying / working in a wine harvest (and taking an actual holiday to do so) was on my bucket list. It might be scrapped. Having said that, this chicken with wine grapes looks delicious!

The older I get, the more I enjoy gift wrapping and gifting in general. Considering how beautiful these envelopes look, I am considering to get back into sending cards.

Also, are you reading the Food52 cookbook 2017 Piglet? I don’t have a favorite, but reading the reviews really is one of my favorite pastimes when distracted from work.

This trick to make almond milk without all the extra work is brilliant! I love almond milk, but often dislike the processed or chemical taste of the ones for sale in the supermarket.

And I am laughing so hard at the discussion whether to eat oranges in the shower or not. I am afraid I fall in the category that should do so (really how does one manage to not be a sticky drippy mess?).

This grapefruit chia mint refresher sounds amazing.

And peanut-butter jelly cups!

Reading this article in the Guardian on how to lead a happy long life: “Also, travel as much as you possibly can – see the world, live well, take care of yourself. But don’t take things too seriously – it’s important to have lots of fun along the way too.”

Have a wonderful Sunday!

Bored of winter produce? Here is the brightest pasta salad!

This pasta salad has become such a staple in my routine, that it is easy to forget how awesome it is. And I can assure you that this pasta salad is like summer in dark winter days.
For this salad I usually raid our cupboards, which makes it extra convenient on weekdays. I have used jarred (marinated) artichokes, frozen avocado cubes (!), dried pasta, feta cheese, loads of lemon juice, pumpkin seeds, pumpkin oil and green herbs to make the shiniest and sunniest salad possible. The best part is that you make the dressing in the salad bowl, which means less dishes! As an extra note on the frozen avocado, I was hesitative at first (and rather afraid that they would be a little mushy), but am really enthusiastic at this point, especially because it makes me feel like less cooled air freight was needed to Europe. For all the Dutchies among us: you can buy it at the Albert Heijn (!).

I’ve made a bazzilion variations and in case you do not have some of the ingredients, I can comfort you that you can easily make swap in raw spinach leaves, juicy black olives, lime juice or braised celery stalks with great succes.

I find that it really pays off to use the best pasta available (I always buy DeCecco), and cook it really al dente, as the pasta tends to soften a little in the dressing (especially if you leave leftovers overnight, which I usually do).

I’m looking forward to find this in our fridge any day. 🙂

Bored of winter produce? Here is the brightest pasta salad!

Ingredients

  • 500 grams dried pasta, such as conchiglioni or any smaller shape (preferably good quality)
  • 2 large ripe, soft avocados, cubed (or 260 grams frozed cubed avocado)
  • 1 jar of artichokes, drained (around 180 grams)
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 3 tablespoons of pumpkin seed oil (or high-quality olive oil)
  • 1 tablespoon of freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of mild mustard
  • Optionally: a handful of chopped fresh green herbs, such as chives, parsley or mint
  • 75 grams of pumpkin seeds (or alternatively you could use choped pecan nuts, or pine nuts)
  • 200 grams of soft feta cheese

Instructions

  1. This serves 4 hungry adults, with likely quite some leftovers.
  2. Boil the pasta all dente, and in the meanwhile drain your jar of artichokes in a colander. There is no need to clean the colander before you drain your pasta in it.
  3. Juice the lemons and pour this into a large salad bowl. In this bowl, add the mustard and pumpkin seed oil. Give this a quick whisk with a fork and add the cubed avocados.
  4. Make sure to cover the avocado in the dressing immediately to prevent them from turning brown.
  5. Add the artichokes, hot pasta, pumpkin seeds and feta cheese and mix everthing up properly. The heat of the pasta ensures that all aromas get mixed even better.
  6. Serve luke-warm or cold. Enjoy!
http://tukskitchen.com/2017/02/21/brightest-winter-pasta-salad/

Happy Friday!

Hello, how are you doing? I’ll be spending the weekend in Amsterdam with friends and I coulnd’t be happier.
I’m happy to report that the resolution I made for 2017, eliminating cooking as a chore and taking things as easy as they come, is working! We are eating loads of simple meals such as roasted vegetables with a cheese platter or mayonnaise, soups and pasta salads.
This in contrast to a lot of last-minute cooking that I did last year, which – I suppose – just crept in over the course of a couple of months. Having reset the button makes it even better to enjoy slow, easy evenings when possible.

Before signing off, I am happy to share the links that made me smile this week.

How beautiful are these underwater photos? Or these stunning visions of our planet?

Advice to my younger self. “And for heaven’s sake, let yourself really fail once in a while — not some tiny little mistakes here and there, but big, glaring, confidence-shaking, dark-night-of-the-soul-inducing failures.”

It’s true, setting music for a good dinner party is a science! I loved reading these professional suggestions.

I’m usually not too excited when there are pieces of fruit in my dinner, but this grilled salmon with avocado & blood oranges looks pretty enticing.

These healthy chocolate cookies seem perfect to try out soon.

Also, I finally know what to make for next year’s valentine’s: a beer cake!

I love to snack on dates, and this recipe – calling for tea-soaking and mascarpone – sounds delicious.

This spring, I’m planning to make ravioli (or caramelle) again. This recipe involving parmesan broth and burrata literally makes my mouth water.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Happy Friday!

Hello! How are you doing? How is your week? I suppose it is the last stretch of winter that is getting to me a bit. Bicycle lanes were icy this week, there were buckets of rain and my cycle-commute was everything but glamorous (although, question is when it ever is of course).
This weekend, we are driving south to spend time with friends and I’m looking forward to wind down and relax.

Before signing off, I am happy to share the links that made me smile this week.

Yesterday I published a post on all tips & recommendations on getting married in Frankfurt (or Germany in general). I thoroughly enjoyed going through all photos of our wedding. Thinking of all the memories we made together with our closest family and friends makes me incredibly happy. And again (forever) credit to the most wonderful bridesmades who let me drink coffee and pretend it was just another day. 🙂

These kitchen hacks are good!

And this honest post on how to read more books is so endearing (and relatable).

I’m not one to exercise every day, but this article got me at “I’m not a professional athlete/superhuman. I’m a regular human who wants to live a good life“.

This chocolate-fudge bundt cake looks delicious!

And this banana cake with dulce de leche sounds divine. I’m plotting to try this recipe for my father and am considering how much more dulce de leche I can add. If you’re looking for a way to make your own dulce de leche, you can find it here.

Talking coffee, this mocha-chocolate mousse sounds delicious!

I’m looking forward to start a new project in the kitchen, and this home-made chorizo (!) is high on my list.

And talking about my cycling commute, I love listening to podcasts (recommendations here) and I after reading all the positive reviews, I am excited to start listening to this one: Pod Save America.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Happy Friday

[photo via]

Hello, how are you doing? How is your Friday? I am finishing up a hard week full of work and I am happy to indulge in a weekend full of reading, coffees and taking it slow. I would secretly (or not so secretly) love to start a two-person book club, and how cozy does this sound?

Below I am sharing some of the links I truly loved reading this week, hope you like them too.

How cool is it to design your resume like this? How many of you have done something like this? I am tempted but also feel verrrry conservative.

And the opposite of daydreaming of a shiny resume, what about retiring before your thirties?

How little things make up the big part of life, a good read to remind one self of what’s important.

And talking about important things, how beautiful are these Winnie de Pooh quotes? “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.

My secret wish to be a little more stoic… Especially the suggestion to ask yourself ‘what would Batman do’ seems brilliant.

And how amazing does this Lumberjack Cake look?

In case you are looking for some breathtaking videos, go and check out Sweetambs. I am not kidding, you might be stuck watching videos until you collapse. Yesterday evening I went ahead and tried to make these Latte Art Cookies, and I can’t believe how much fun I had with it. Tonight we are bringing a plate of them to friends and I’m hoping to tuck in. 😉

These weeks we are eating loads of roasted vegetables combined with grains, such as millet. This recipe of farro with mushrooms sounds really good!
These Kofta Meatballs sounds incredibly tasty and would make a wonderful addition.

And in case you hoping to see some recipes, I’ll soon be back with mascarpone buttercream, Russian pastries called ‘Kartoshka’ and this Tiramisu Cake

Have a wonderful weekend!