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Homemade vegan oliebollen with apple & cranberries for New Year's Eve!

There’s a first time for everything. I’m 42 but today I made oliebollen for the first time in my life. I used a vegan recipe from Lisette Kreischer’s cookbook Ecofabulous (which I was recently able to obtain as e-book), and replaced the raisins with cranberries — I’m still in a Wadden Island mood, where we spent Christmas!

We’re toasting here with blueberry wine while Juno is waiting for her chance to ‘catch’ a fritter. Can’t blame her, because they are yummy! :)

Wishing you all a very happy, compassionate and animal-friendly 2013!

Special thoughts tonight for my friend muizz who recently lost her father, and for WM who’s dad is also terminally ill. It’s hard to celebrate a new year when you know your loved one won’t be there to enjoy it with you. :(

Origami Christmas Trees 2012

Wishing all my (cyber) friends

a VERY MERRY X-MAS
&
WONDERFUL NEW YEAR!!!

Four Dutch tweeps -slash- foodie bloggers have teamed up to share some dips & spreads with you for New Year’s Eve.

Chinoiseries is serving us Roasted Cauliflower Dip (vegetarian with vegan suggestion)
JannyAn shares some Nutty Blue Cheese Spread (vegetarian; post in Dutch)
Uniflame is spooning out Bean Paté (vegetarian with vegan suggestion)
And me?

Mediterrenean Carrot Spread

The recipe that I’d like to share is a super easy, vegan dip that I’ve made several times now and is always a hit with vegetarians, flexitarians and omnivores alike: Mediterranean carrot spread.

I dedicate this post to Uniflame who seems to be at a loss with all the carrots among her CSA vegetables. ;)

Mediterranean Carrot Dip

Mediterrenean Carrot Spread

Ingredients

  • 250 grams carrots, cleaned and cut into small pieces
  • 2 tbsp good quality olive oil (extra virgin)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice (or vinegar)
  • 1 small garlic clove (or half a big one)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • cayenne pepper / harissa / sambal
  • salt & pepper
  • optional: salty black olives

Also handy: a (hand) blender

Preparation

  1. Thoroughly cook the carrots on either your stove (about 20 minutes) or in microwave (4 minutes on 700 Wt). Drain.
  2. Blend (or mash) together carrots, olive oil, lemon juice (or vinegar), cumin and garlic.
  3. Add harissa (cayenne/sambal) and salt ‘n peppa to taste.
  4. Let it completely cool down.
  5. Serve as a side dish or mezze, with Turkish pide bread, Italian ciappe, melba toast, veggies or whatever. It’s nice -but not necessary at all- to garnish this dip with salty black olives.

If you’ve got a few minutes left before you need to get ready for your s-mashing End of Year Party: grab some carrots and throw together this nice snack!

This spread can easily be made a day in advance but after 48 hours it gets too watery. Not that you’ll have any leftovers for that long! ;)

Now I highly recommend you hop over to the other participants’ recipes (links above)! :)

AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU ALL!!

Check out other food-related posts at Beth Fish’s Weekend Cooking!

Also submitted to Kookgrrl’s December theme: Food to share,

& Zesty Palette’s New ‘U’ Event.

Button New "U" Event

Me & my rabbit Bumpie in the eighties

2011 is the year of the rabbit according to Chinese Zodiac. I love rabbits — had one myself once and it is roughly the equivalent of my western Zodiac sign Pisces, so it can’t be anything but G.O.O.D. :)

It’ll also give me a great excuse to buy lots of kawaii bento goodies with usagi. ;)

Wishing all my virtual and real life friends a warm, happy hopping 2011 with lots of love. Couldn’t do without you!

2011

The Year of the TigerToday is a special day: Valentine’s Day and Chinese New Year. Yay, The Year of The Tiger has started! This afternoon I went to a Chinese festival and released Paper Tiger (Papieren tijger) by Olivier Rolin for our Bookcrossing Monopoly Game. And I hopped by our city’s red light district for a Valentine’s release called Solely Lust (Louter lust): erotic stories for women. Both have been caught already!

In the past week I finally managed to post my review of In Cold Blood by Truman Capote. And I wrote a (belated) Weekly Geeks post revealing a fun fact about author David Mitchell.

Cover The RomanticNow, this Valentine’s Day Sunday Salon provides me with a good opportunity to talk about Weekly Geeks 2010-6: ‘Romancing the Tome’. Have you heard of The Romantic, a book by Barbara Gowdy (one of my favourite authors)? You should have! It got longlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2003, and was in the running for several other awards. I haven’t been able to write a coherent review of this book about a zillion kinds of love; I had too many feelings to make any sense of them. So I’m going to give you the synopsis from Waterstones:

How do you love someone who sits, smiling, at the edge of oblivion? Award-winning Canadian writer Barbara Gowdy unravels a romance, and the idea of romance, in this spry, witty, agile novel full of all the species of love. Louise Kirk falls in love. She’s 10, lives in a cosy, unremarkable suburban home, but, remarkably, has lost a mother already. Or, rather, her chic, sharp mother has disappeared. So, Louise, lonely and steeped in complicated yearnings, decides to fall in love. Furiously. First, she falls in love with her magnificent new neighbour, the operatic and exotic Mrs Richter. Then, within the year, she falls for Mrs Richter’s brilliant son Abel. Distracting him from his attentive study of everything around him — the constellations, the moths, the music — proves quite a struggle. But before long Abel finds he loves Louise ‘too much’. A dozen years later, Abel is gone and Louise is devastated. This is the unravelling story of their romance! In The Romantic, Barbara Gowdy tracks and identifies all the species of love. Each of her characters is iridescent, but Louise Kirk, who flies to love again and again like a moth at a lamp, is a creature from whom no reader will easily tear their gaze.

I am not a person to reread books — so many books, so little time! But I have been wanting to start over in The Romantic ever since I finished it (and that was in 2004). Yes, that’s how much I loved it. Well, I’d better finish my current book first — I seem to be STUCK in it! :-o That’s the 3rd part of I Am a Cat by Natsume Sōseki. And the bookgroup discussion starts tomorrow! I guess I’ve left it for too long. But I don’t want to put the novel aside; I should be able to finish the last part of this classic! Although it seems to be keeping me from reading at all…

The Pillow Book read-along

Arrived at entry: 0
Entries read since last time: 0

My Name Is Sei Shonagon (book)Oooops, I still haven’t started reading yet! It’s because of my problems with I Am a Cat. I hope I’ll have some better news for you next week! Anyway, I did buy another book to read once The Pillow Book read-along has ended. A bit premature, I knoooow LOL, but I couldn’t leave this discarded library book for someone else to find, could I?

It’s My Name Is Sei Shonagon in Dutch (Mijn naam is Sei Shonagon), by Jan Blensdorf. You can find a review on Curled Up With a Good Book.

The Sunday Salon is a virtual gathering of booklovers on the web, where they blog about bookish things of the past week, visit each others weblogs, oh — and read ;)

Gnoe goes ExtraVeganza!

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