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11 posts from July 2007

Almond plum buckle cake, or Zwetschgen in season


Thursdays often represent a lull, and a time to catch up with recipes and produce before setting into weekend activity. I had noted the debut of Zwetschgen in the shops, and thought my almond plum buckle cake, which I first made last August to great acclaim from Alison and James, was due for another whirl. If you happen to have two half-opened packets in the cupboard, one of finely ground almonds and one of coarsely ground, then I would certainly recommend shaking some of each into the bowl: the slight bite of the rougher nuts adds a substance to the cake layer that I quite liked. Meanwhile, the wild tartness of Zwetschgen (Damson plums) is just the foil to all that buttery richness; I needed about fifteen.

Beer gardens in Berlin: The Prater


I know, I know, it's famous, but seriously, it's easy to lose track of the classics, the standards, the places that are wonderful that you take for granted, and so as a reminder to us both this little photo of the Prater, to remind us of its dreaminess in mid-summer, sitting along a yellow table reading, eating a Bratwurst, sharing a Hefeweizen, watching the Berlin fathers chase their tiny children around the chestnut trees...

Prater Garten Berlin, Kastanienallee 7-9 (map)
The beer garden opens at noon daily from April to September provided the weather's fine. The Biergarten menu is sausage-heavy as to be expected but vegetarians can choose between the pasta salad, the potato salad and the cheese kebabs.

Rhubarb compote


My rhubarb compote jag shows no signs of stopping To make it, roughly chop some rhubarb and toss it with a third of its weight in sugar (eg 1 kg of rhubarb to 300 g sugar). Put in a baking dish, ideally with half a dessicated vanilla bean from the vanilla sugar jar, now just barely exuding its perfume. Put in a shallow baking dish, cover tightly with aluminum foil, and bake at 350 F/150 C for 40 minutes or so. Let cool for fifteen minutes or so before gingerly removing the foil, then transfer to jars, spooning out the pooled juices equitably, and store in the refrigerator.


Tea for four (Stefanie Scheier)


Now that Katherine's received her slightly belated wedding present I can post the photos I took before David carefully wrapped everything up. After buying the odd cup or bowl off Stefanie's shelves for smaller occasions, I was thrilled by how well she executed my little personal order...

Keramik Stefanie Scheier, Husemanstra├če 23, 10435 Berlin (map)