Tahini Miso Cookies

Don’t like to use the word fusion, because it sounds like something futuristic and modern, but the idea behind tese cookies is that they use Japanese ingredients in a form that is not tipical for their cuisine, but very much adored here in Europe. These are sort of version of english tea biscuits and are ment to be minimal and simple but complicate with individual complexity of ingredients. For example – adding salt with miso. Because it’s creamy like tahini, and brings a kind of gentler, deeper saltness. Orange peel and ginger for the zing, to uplift the heavy, slobby grease of tahini. And sesame seeds as garnish on top are crucial, but have to be mildly roasted (not too browned, as they get bitter) in advance to bring the full nutty aroma.

I like to keep the list of ingredients to the minimum and not over complicate, but these have to have all this inside to be perfect. You should know these are not very sweet, only a hint of sweetness, so they fall in the adult cookie category. Pair them with genmaicha tea, it’s nutty aroma complements them really nice.


Tahini Miso Cookies

  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tbsp tahini
  • 2 tbsp white miso paste (if you use stronger and darker miso paste use only generous 1 tbsp)
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • Orange zest from one orange
  • 1/2 tbsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds, gently roast till you can smell the aroma

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400 F). Mix flour and baking powder separately from the wet ingredients. Combine both mixes, if to dry add a splash of water. Form into a ball of dough. You can substitute olive oil for butter, to get more shortbread like texture. If you used butter chill the dough for at least an hour. If using olive oil begin with forming the dough in small balls. Dip each ball in roasted sesame seeds and flatten the ball to form a nice even round cookie. Bake for 20 minutes.


Crescent Moods

I just recently watched Food Inc., fairly old movie, but the problematic didn’t get obsolete or changed in the mean time. There is an example in the movie that show how our society is dealing with problems, or let’s call them discrepancies. Feeding the cows with corn to achieve lower price of the meat. E.Coli outbreaks rise alarmingly caused by improper cow nourishment and the solution to this is to wash the meat in ammonia. Seems like all that we do is we are obsessively keeping the statistics, graphs and percentages on desired levels. The specified numerical thresholds which are labeled as good and correct.

When you look at the whole situation over of the charts and graphs, it seems barely logical and quite bizarre. A wast amount of energy, time and resources spent on keeping the system working in certain directions. For what, meat that is hardly a tissue, let along steak? Looking solemnly at numbers and desperately adjusting them to make the formula perfect. And this is happening on every aspect of our society – environmental policy, education, industrial production and health care. And we dare to call ourselves developed countries. Yes, it is amazing what we can achieve when we set our mind, energy and resources to reach goals.  That is the real goals, that improve and function in the society, not just keeping up the numbers. The progress line can’t be endlessly heading straight up into growth, harder, better, faster, stronger. Funny how we hear this words with positive connotation, when the reality is that not every growth is positive or for the better. And by strategically fine tuning one number, other markers collapse or rise over the allowed limits, and the vicious circle is spinning, with nobody enjoying the ride.

This seems to grand to solve on an individual level. And it seems so apparently logical that we should be functioning on a different level. Cycles are the ever occuring universal rhythm. It’s very easy to get caught up in the fuss over numbers and steady growth. Not necessarily bad, but know what the numbers are about and that progress looks like an oscillated amplitude. This way you can enjoy the crescent phases just as much as the peaked full moon.

Below is a recipe for no ordinary crescent rolls, which do not grow bigger in the oven. But this is how they are just perfect.


Crescent Poppy Seed Rolls

For the dough:

  • 1 cup rice flour +  more for rolling
  • 1 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1/4 cup flax egg
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3-6 tbsp water
  • 3 tbsp water with a little maple syrup to glaze

Poppy seed filling:

  • 1 cup ground poppy seeds
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • pinch of salt

There are accidentally vegan, if you use rice or soy milk. I have nothing against eggs, but this works for the days when eggs are missing in the fridge, also the flax egg gives great texture to the dough and a certain nutty flavour. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350 F). Mix all of the ingredients for the filling. Mix flours with salt. Add oil mixed with sugar and mix to flours into sandy mixture. Rub flax egg in the sandy mixture and gradually add water slowly. Mix, you will end up with sticky dough. Add a sprinkle of flour and knead to for a nice smooth dough ball. Roll out on well floured surface, cut and fill with filling. Finish by glazing them with water and maple syrup and sprinkle with poppy seeds. Bake for 25-30 minutes and cool out on the rack.



Coolest finds in the fridge

Few weeks ago, holding tightly on the fence at the tip off of the boat and resisting fierce wind with a huge smile on my face, I realised the thing I adore with summer is actually cold. This is the only time when the cold feels good. My cold feet vata dosha constantly demands warmth, and cold food outside summer feels like eating rocks. But in extreme heat of summer – oh, the soothing feeling of a cold bite sliding down the throat.

Bet you are searching for some recipes to be prepared straight from the fridge in the hot summer. Here is one tipsy adult popsicle recipe, featured in the latest edition of Mrvica magazine. These are best stocked up in the fridge for spontaneous drop by. Forget gin on rocks with slice of cucumber, lick it off the stick and you won’t even notice you got yourself drunk.

Click here to download the free online magazine and see more icy fresh recipes:


White currant & Cucumber Gin popsicles

  • 350g fresh white currants
  • ½ cup sugar
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 1 cup gin
  • ½l  water
  • 1 sliced lemon
  • 1 sliced cucumber

The number of popsicles depends on your molds. I didn’t have any so I used plastic champagne glasses which worked great, and resulted in 8 popsicles. Simmer the the white currants and sugar with about ½ a cup of water for 8-10 mins. Leave to cool. Strain, and push pulp through sieve to remove seeds. Add the lemon juice, gin and water. Pour in popsicle model, insert cucumber and lemon slices and freeze for at least 5 hours.


Honey and goat yogurt Ice cream

Here it is for a perfect season opening – minimal creamy ice cream with kind of savory quality. Yes,  rosemary was considered, but I wanted it as minimal as possible. If you feel like experimenting, you can add rosemary, thyme, tarragon to the milk when heating it with the honey.



Honey and Goat yogurt ice cream

2 cups goat yogurt

1 cup whole milk (cow or sheep milk)

1/2 cup honey

3/4 cup soft goat cheese

1/2 tbsp salt

Heat the milk and disolve honey in it. Cool down completely. Whizz up all of the ingredients, until soft cheese fully incorporates. Transfer to the ice cream container and freeze it according to manufacturer’s manuals. Serve with a drizzle of honey.


Saffron cauliflower soup

Lately my cooking is all about colours. The gray dullness outside makes me crave vibrant foods and what better way then to use blooms to spice things up. As saffron is strong enough to tint the textiles, it is also used to clear away the blues as it is an antidepressant. So, here is a soup to warm and energize.


Saffron Cauliflower Soup

1 head cauliflower florets, broken into pieces
1 small peice of celeriac, diced
1 medium diced onion
2 peices of garlic
2 Tbsp ghee
1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish
1 Tbsp sliced almonds for garnish
1 tsp saffron
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock

In a heavy-bottomed pot, sauté the onions and garlic in the melted ghee until fragrant.  Add the celeriac and cauliflower.  Pour in the stock and bring the mixture to a boil.  In a small saucepan, warm a bit of ghee and heat the saffron, releasing its flavor and color.  Add to the soup mixture.  Cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until the cauliflower is tender.  Use a stick blender to puree the soup until smooth.  Taste and add salt, if needed, garnish with parsley and almonds.


Autopilot juggling

Back on track, with schedules and deadlines. Adjusting to the discipline again and feeling the motivation engines humming in the background.  Productive. Important word. The way to productivity is to consciously think about your working habits, observe when, how and why the productive peaks happen. Read this book. The  pace of our lives is forcing us to be on autopilot most of the time. Automated reacting instead of proactive thinking. There are certain theories about the question whose  interest is it to have autopiloted citizens, but that is a discussing for another place and time.

But yes, my point is there is no need to be a slave of automated world bombarding you from all directions and demanding your attention, time and energy. Emails can wait, you know. That is their purpose, phone is ment for emergency answers.  Matters of life and death, broken heart or irreplaceable things. You know the famous juggling balls theory from Coca Cola CEO? This is a successful person with many obligations and responsibilities, saying to you, that work should not be your first priority. Think about it and set your standards, hold the steering wheel and drive. No automatics. Including the food at work…I’m still juggling this one.

If is has to be a sandwich, make it a good one.

sandwich lunch working snack


Sea bass in salt crust

I’m covered in salt, my hair is curled up with crystals and pine needles. Quite appropriate for salt baking post. Sure grilling is great, but when salt baking you get to play with salt like beach sand, break the salt crust at the end and taste the rich juicy meat infused with lemon and rosemary. Time to be outside, so forgive me on this short post, but the sun and sea are calling.

Sea Bass Baked in Salt crust


Wild on sugar

Sugar and flowers. With tiny white blossoms. The only thing missing is a dash of pink and washi tapes. I find myself awkward and clumsy in this lady settings, with mud on polished shoes, patches of green grass stains and bruises on my knees. But yet as girly as the elderflower blossoms are, they have their pure wilderness and this is what makes them interesting. Dipping the blossoms in thin pancake batter feels like soaking a paintbrush in paint. But the best comes when releasing it in hot oil where it automatically spreads back into full bloom. Generously sprinkle powder sugar before serving, to retreat their fluffy white quality.
If frying elderflowers seemed like a crime against natural beauty, drowning baby pine sprouts in sugar is kitch overload. Basically, if you add enough  sugar to almost anything, the kids will love it. Even the cough syrup. I once faked a sore throat to my grandma just to get a spoon full of pine syrup. Again, not very lady like. Aside from anti cough properties the syrup is an amazing topping for ice creams, fruit salads and oh, do try it with cottage cheese and blueberries. Preparation takes time, but very little effort. Stack layers of pine sprouts and sugar in a jar, leave sunbathing until the sugar dissolves into syrup. Filter and store for serious sugar drops khm…coughs.
This article is featured in latest edition of Mrvica food mag. Turn to page 8, this issue is another best of in a series of “great content meets pleasure for the eyes”. Immensely happy to be part of the team.

Fried edelflower fritters

pine sprouts syrup


The greener peas

The ones on the other side. With voluptuously saturated green and supreme glow. “Bling”, from the shine spark. Anti consumerist might blame it on the hard core capitalism, which is igniting purchasing desires in order to keep the money motor running. But in fact there is also our inner motor which runs on fuel,  the goal, the constant need of something to be achieved or improved. Yes, sometimes it may seem like that we are constantly reaching on a never ending staircase. How very non zen, if you look at this treadmill running from a distance, it does seem almost primitive and ridiculous. But then again, the Buddhists are also longing, reaching higher and improving their knowledge, compassion and serenity. Having infinite desires to always reach higher is in our nature, our nature given kick in the rump to exist.
Whenever I look back I always regret because I keep longing to the perfect future. When all the problems, frustrations, imperfections and goals will be over. Keeping the motor running is crucial, just don’t forget to enjoy the ride.
What does that have to do with peas? Nothing really, but the soup is fantastic.

peas from podpea soup with tarragon

Fresh peas and tarragon soup
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup peeled diced apples (hint: the secret ingredient)
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3 cups shelled fresh peas
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon leaves
  • freshly ground white pepper and salt to taste
  • greek yogurt for garnish

In a saucepan cook onions and apples on olive oil, covered, over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until tender. Add peas and broth, simmer uncovered for additional 5 minutes, or until peas are cooked. Stir in tarragon. In a blender purée until smooth. Add white pepper and salt to taste and garnish with a dollop of greek yogurt.


Bad conscious after taste

You know the feeling: you want it so bad, it is right there, you already smell it, crave it, feel the texture in your mouth and the taste taking over. “O, what tha heck…” and it’s down the throat. Once the urge has been sattled, and the demanding ego is taking a restful nap, the super ego starts decelerate a monologue with obvious discontent voice. Monologue of “how could you do it, you promised never again and you know how this will end up”. The guilt taking on extra points of regret.

It’s no coincidence that Maslow’s scale of needs and seven deadly sins have basic correlation – our drives and urges. Basically, you could say that a need becomes sinful once you already reach higher on Maslow’s hierarchy and yet still feel the first level needs are not satisfied. Let’s say when you are full up to your neck  and yet still want that last piece of cake, with ice cream on top of course. Or, when you are willing to trade higher level needs for the basic ones, for example safety for lust or self-esteem for gluttony. Priorities are our heaviest decision making scale weight. No, I’m not talking about guilt calorie counting, it’s about garlic. The thing you desire but regret half an hour later and even the day after. If you happen to stumble on certain close relation without gum, the regret of sinful bite is even greater.

I tried to make wild garlic more innocent by wrapping it in pure white ravioli form. Didn’t help though, with the guilt, nor with the breath. But it was worth it.

ravioli wild garlic

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 leaves of wild garlic
  • olive oil
  • salt

Put flour in the bowl, break the eggs in the middle. Slowly mix together, once well incorporated add water. Allow to rest for 20 minutes, covered. In the mean time chop the wild garlic leaves and mix with ricotta an pinch of salt. Then roll the dough out cut it with round cutter, will with ricotta mix, seal well. Cook raviolis in boiling water until they start to float on top. Serve drizzled with olive oil and garnish with remaining chopped wild garlic.