Category Archives: savory


No, the Daring Baker challenge didn´t kill me or induce a blissful buttery-chocolatey comma, I just haven´t been cooking that many note-worthy recipes lately.

But since I don´t like to leave you empty-handed for longer than a week or so, I´m gonna share some images of my “little” brother making sushi in an attempt to make him stop bugging me about it and show that everyone, and I mean everyone, can make sushi… this is what I call multi-purpose writing, ladies and gentlemen!




And then there´s this broccoli sauté from Giada´s book that I loved, and this wonderful broccoli tortilla I invented (in fact, that´s another one of my problems as a food bloggers, there are many times when I just improvise a meal in 20 or 30 minutes so I can´t be bothered to slow down and record the amounts and the whole process.



But I´m glad to announce this might be my very first sucessful tortilla endeavour… in terms of presentation I mean and the tortilla actually being a whole when I´m done cooking.

Oh, and another one of my excuses for leaving you stranded without much in the way of food or a recipe is the fact that my baby, aka Phoebe, had cataract surgery on her left eye last week so I´ve been occupied with puppy-nursing activities as well. But everything went fine, and even though “the cone” is now gone, it has left us with precious pics like this:


hahaaha I hope that made reading this mess of an entry worth it.

And I´ll be back in a few days with hopefully some more food and an actual recipe, or maybe some pics of Buenos Aires I´ve started taking lately.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. I´m planning to take advantage of the early spring and enjoy the city as much as possible (oh, and we have strawberries, people, can´t believe it, bye bye winter, won´t miss you one bit!).


Filed under food, Phoebe, rambling, savory

Back to basics


When you are in a funk, it´s good to turn to comfort food, and to me, comfort food usually equals Mediterranean food. But I didn´t want to do the same old stuff, since I have a blog to update after all, so I turned to The Cook´s Book and started making a list of all the basic and not-so-basic recipes I want to try.

This tomato tapenade basically screamed at me. As you probably know, the typical tapenade is mainly made out of olives and capers. But this one also has sundried tomatoes, garlic, lemon and many other appetizing additions.


One of the beauties of this recipe, besides the fact that it packs a punch in terms of flavor, is that it´s incredibly versatile. The typical use would be spread over bread, and it´s delicious like that, but I also tried it with chickpeas and it´s amazing, and it made a last minute meal of plain spaghetti almost sing. Other uses I´ve thought of is to mix it with ricotta and use it as a ravioli filling, or add it to dough for pizza or bread.


I think you get the point by now, you need to make it! You can adjust the quantities in the recipe to suit your taste, as did I, or add some other herbs you think would work well here. Bon appetitt!

Tomato tapenade (adapted from a recipe by Paul Gayler found in The Cook´s Book)

Makes 1 cup

3 1/2 oz (100g) oiled-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and rougly chopped (I used around 15 regular sun-dried tomatoes, not preserved in oil)

1 tsp Dijon mustard

2 1/2 tsp capers, rinsed and drained (the original called for the same amount of tablespoons, but I thought it was too much for my taste)

3 tbsp pitted green olives

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 tsp chopped rosemary

1 tsp lemon juice

6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1. Put all the ingredients in a food processor. Using the on-off pulse button, process to a coarse purée, but not until smooth.

2. Season the tapenade with salt and pepper to taste. Serve at room temperature (but you can keep it in the fridge for at least a few days and I´m fairly sure it freezes well too.)


Filed under food, savory, vegetables

No mirror here

Well, I haven´t been cooking all that much lately and I´m finally running out of older recipes, and I´m not even participating in the Daring Bakers challenge this month, but I couldn´t let this day go by without telling you to check out the Strawberry Mirror Cake they made this month. Yes, go ahead, I´ll wait right here.

Ok, now that´s out of the way, I´m gonna tell you about an amazing garlic bread Tanna posted about a couple of weeks ago. Yes, another bread recipe, sorry, it´s winter here so i´m not going to wait until it´s scorching hot outside to turn on the oven.


I know most people just cut a piece of bread and just put loads of garlic and butter on top and bake it. Well, while that could work, not for me. And this bread is quite easy to make and produces a loooooot of bread, most of which sat quietly in the freezer until I was ready to dispose of it.


Next time I make it, I´ll up the salt and the garlic and add part of the garlic-herbs mix to the dough itself… and maybe up the butter content a bit too… I know, I know, I´m bad, but if you are going to do it, you might as well go the whole way.


For the recipe, head over to Tanna´s site (you can modify the herbs to your heart´s content, I think I used crushed coriander seeds and dry rosemary because it was what I had on hand at the time.)



Filed under bread, Daring bakers, food, savory

Catching up

Lately I´ve been doing a whole lot of cooking, but falling a bit short on the writing part of the deal. And since I must be at least 6 or 7 recipes behind right now, I´m thinking my only way out of this mess is to do a recap sort of post, you know, like they do in sitcoms when they run out of ideas, but in this case, it´s all new stuff, so don´t hate me just yet.

One of the reasons why I´ve fallen behind is probably the length of the recipes I´ve been doing lately… I mean, I try to fight my lazy nature, but typing up a 3-page recipe can be too daunting a task sometimes.

rosemary garlic bread 2

But when the recipe is good enough to demand being shared, I oblige. And that would be the case with this recipe by Peter Reinhart. It´s a roasted garlic-rosemary bread with mashed potatoes in the dough… that´s a recipe for sucess right there. It´s definitely one of those bread to be devoured on its own or used to enhance most dishes. You need to invite people over to help you eat it or freeze most of it as soon once it has cooled down, otherwise, you´ll be in a whole lot of trouble… don´t say I didn´t warn you.

rosemary garlic bread

rosemary garlic bread 3

The second recipe I´ve meant to discuss sooner is Dorie Greenspan´s Allspice Crumble Muffins (since everyone seems to have the book and I´m tired after typing out the first recipe, it´s on page 16 of Baking: From my Home to Yours.) First of all, I hadn´t tried allspice before, so that was a revelation in itself, but the crumble on top of the muffin was simply perfect, a very moist crumb topped with a sturdy crust, can´t get better than that. Flavor-wise, I´ll add a bit more allspice next time to kick it up a notch.

allspice crumble muffins

Then I made Peter Reinhart Vienna´s bread, which, while very good, doesn´t justify typing out a yet another 3 page recipe (maybe with a few tweaks it will,) but this picture of Phoebe guarding the bread does justify mentioning it! (This is for those of you asking for updated pics of her… more coming up soon, I promise.)

Vienna bread

Vienna bread, security included

And the last recipe I want to share with you today is a recipe by the talented Ilva over at Lucullian Delights. It´s a recipe for Mediterranean chickpea fritters with olives and sun-dried tomatoes. I had all the ingredients in my pantry, so it took me 10 minutes overall to have this on the table, and it´s so damn good I made it again a couple of days later. The only thing I changed was that I added 1 egg because I figured it´d give it a fluffier consistency and a teaspoon of capers just because I like them. Either way you like it, do yourself a favor and make them.

Ilva´s chickpea fritters

Ilva´s chickpea fritters 2

Phew! Done!

(Recipe after the jump)

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Filed under bread, food, Phoebe, savory, sweet, vegetables

Chew on this

bagels 4

Yes, it´s that time of the month again, but there´s no pastry cream this time, I kid you not, not even puff pastry or cream puffs. Have the Daring Bakers gone completely mad, you ask, no I say, it´s just that simple was the way to go this time around, and boy are we glad about it.

Now, you must think of the word “easy” in Daring-Bakers terms of course, because what we made was bagels from scratch.


I was totally into it right from the get go because, as some of you might have realized, I´m up for anything bread-like these days, and I´ve been meaning to try making bagels for ages now.

bagels 2

The problem was that my only bagel-eating experiences were a plain bagel on a Delta plane (which, surprisingly, I loved, though then again, I don´t think the palate is truly demanding at 7am after 10 hours on a plane, I´d do anything just to be distracted for a little while… ok, you need to cleanse your mind here, not that kind of anything on a plane, at least not so far!)… where was I? Yes, bagels, well, the other bagels I had tried were supermarket blueberry bagels (shudder!). In my defense, my ex boyfriend bought them and he didn´t seem to have a very refined sense in terms of food (though he did have a wonderful taste in women, of course).

bagels 3

So needless to say, I´m not sure if I have the right parameters to judge my bagel-making efforts. I mean they were quite chewy, but apparently they are supposed to be like that, and the toppings were nice, and they took like 3 hours to make overall, which is like nothing.

I did a bunch of different toppings: black sesame seeds, regular sesame seeds, poppy seeds, parmesan cheese, parmesan cheese with a taco mix, parmesan cheese with garlic flakes (do you see a trend here?), sea salt, and mixes of the previous toppings. My favorites were the sesame seed and, surprise surprise, the parmesan-taco bagels.

bagels 6

As you can see in this picture, when I tried the “snake” method of bagel-making, it didn´t work all too well. But as I always tell myself when things come out funny-looking, they are “rustic” bagels… yeah, right!

As for the veredict, I don´t have a clear one… I liked the bagels, but I think they were a bit bready, though I think I´ll just have to go to New York, try the real deal and then compare. I know, my life is full of sacrifices.

bagels 5

For the recipe, click here. And remember to check out the other Daring Bakers creations in the Link Madness page above.


Filed under bread, Daring bakers, savory

We won´t go down without a fight

It seems that most of us are constantly struggling against our bodies… for some reason, hips and tighs refuse to support our cooking endeavours properly, those rebelious bastards! But, not to panick, Lisa and Kelly devised a foodie event to help us all called Salad Stravaganza.

Basically, any sort of salad would do, so the possibilities were pretty much endless. But I didn´t have to think for too long: good old caponata salad was perfect for this. It has tuna, tomatoes, olives, anchovies, peppers and a special type of cracker called “galleta marinera” here, that looks something like this:

galletas marineras

galletas marineras 2

I´m sure you can use other types of crackers, just make sure it´s quite tough, kind of like very crisp breadstick.

You add the crackers a couple of hours before serving to let them soak in the salad juices so it lends a crunch, but not too much of a crunch that it gets in the way of the other flavors and textures. (The original recipe put the crackers at the beginning, but I found the crackers get too soggy for my liking that way.)


It´s really easy to assemble and has to be made at least 12 hours ahead of time to let the flavors meld together, so it´s perfect for a dinner party (with some meat if your guests are into meat, I just made this along with a Caesar´s salad and my guests were perfectly happy.)


Being an Italian salad, there´s no fancy dressing, just a clever combination of ingredients to bring out the best flavor. Oh, and sorry for the bad bad pictures, the light wasn´t cooperating and I was in the midst of a cooking frenzy, so pictures weren´t high up on my list of priorities.

caponata 2

caponata 3

Well, that´s it, that´s all I can do to fight the expanding nature of hips and tighs, hope it helps, though I have the feeling they will win in the end.

 Caponata (adapted and translated from Cocina Básica, by Blanca Cotta)

Eggs, 3

Anchovies, 6

Green pepper, half

Red pepper, half

Green olives, 100 grams

Black olives, 100 grams (Here I just used a big bunch of green olives because I´m not much of a fan of black olives.)

Tuna, canned with water (The original recipe called for tuna in oil, but I hate it with a passion, I´d rather add some good olive oil later on.)

Crackers, called “galletas marineras”, or similar, 4 big ones or 8 small ones

Garlic, 3 big cloves

Tomatoes, 4

Scallions, 2 tablespoons (optional)

Olive oil


Capers, 2 tablespoons (the original recipe called for picked cucumbers, so you can use that instead if you´d like)

Salt and pepper

1. Boil the eggs for 8 minutes (after the water has started boiling, that is). Peel them once they are cold.

2. Cut the tomatoes and the scallions and put them in the bottom of the bowl you want to serve the salad in. Add a bit of salt, pepper, olive oil and vinegar at this point.

3. Then add the tuna, the capers (or pickled cucumbers), the boiled eggs (chopped), the olives (chopped), the anchovies (yes, also chopped, in this case, very finely so that the flavor spreads out), and the peppers, chopped into thin strips. At this point, you should season the salad again (keep in mind that the anchovies and the olives are quite salty, though).

4. Cover with plastic wrap and store it in the fridge for at least 12 hours (I like it better around 24 hours after it´s made).

5. About 2 hours before you plan to serve it, peel the garlic cloves. Using a fork, scrape the garlic cloves against the crackers to get them all nice and garlicky. Once you are done, break the crackers into medium-sized pieces and mix them into the salad.

6. Take the salad out of the fridge about an hour before you plan to serve it to allow the flavors to come out more clearly. Enjoy!


Filed under events, savory, vegetables

Freestyle naan bread

Before anyone thinks I´m taking this everything-must-be-homemade trend a bit too far, I need to clarify
that there are few Indian restaurants in Buenos Aires, non particularly cheap, so I don´t have Indian food delivered to my house, and I have never tried naan bread before. So, you should be warned that the shape and size of my bread will probably be off in
terms of what this bread is actually supposed to look like.


Having said that, I don´t care! The texture and taste of this bread simply blew me away and I think it took me an hour and a half to make it from start to finish, not bad at all when you want to compliment a great stew with something that does it justice.

naan 2

I first searched in The Bread Baker´s Apprentice, but most breads there take two days to make (yes, I am being serious), so that wasn´t going to happen (I did make an remarkable bread from the book that I´ll share with you soon, but now let´s focus on the naan.)

I used melted butter to work the bread because nothing can beat a nice buttery flavor and I used chives instead of cilantro on top because that´s what I had, and I´m also not a fan of cilantro leaves (coriander seeds are a different story.)

naan 3

There´s not much more to say except that you should really make this bread when you have the chance because it´s good on its own, with some humus or with anything really and you can heat it up in the toaster the next day or freeze it and have some in a few minutes whenever the mood strikes.

naan 4

Naan bread (adapted from The Cook´s Book, recipe by Dan Lepard)

Yields 4 breads (I think I got 6 or 7… depends on the size)

2/3 cup (150cc) water at 72°F (22°C)

3/4 tsp (5g) compressed fresh yeast (I used around 1/3 tsp of dry yeast)

2 cups (250g) cake flour

3 1/2 tablespoons plain low-fat yogurt (I think sour cream would work as well here)

1/2 tsp fine sea salt

3/4 tsp baking powder

sunflower oil, ghee or melted butter for kneading (I used melted butter because I love the flavor)

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro or parsley, optional (I used chopped chives)

1. Pour water into a bowl. Whisk in the yeast, then add half the flour. Mix together with a fork, then cover the bowl and leave in a warm place for 30 minutes.

2. Stir in the yogurt, then add the rest of the flour, the salt, and baking powder. Mix together with your hands (or a spoon if you find it easier) into a soft, sticky ball. Spoon 2 tsp of oil, ghee or melted butter into the bowl and rub it over the top of the dough, then pick the dough up out of the bowl and roughly squeeze it once or twice. Place the dough back in the bowl, cover, and leave for 15 minutes.

3. Pour another 1 tsp oil, ghee or melted butter onto the dough and rub lightly all over, then turn the dough out onto a lightly oiled work surface. Knead the dough lightly for 30 seconds, then return it to the bowl. Cover and leave for another 15 minutes.

4. By this time, the dough should be much smoother. Knead lightly on the oiled surface for a minutes, then divide into fourths (or sixths, or any number, it´ll depend on the surface or the wok or skillet you are using.) Dust with flour and leave for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, heat a wok over medium heat (a nonstick skillet with a lid also works.)

5. Take one piece of dough and roll it out into a teardrop shape, dusting well with flour as you go. Try to get the dough quite thin, about 1/4in (3mm) if possible.

6. When the wok is very hot, gently lift the dough and lay it in the wok. Brush the surface of the dough with a little sunflower oil, ghee or melted butter (remember that the melted butter burns more easily, so you can use half melted butter and half oil to have a higher burning point) mixed with the herbs, if using (I added the herbs at the last minute because otherwise they would get burned). Place the lid on the wok and leave for 1 minute, while you roll out another piece of dough.

7. Check the naan. It should have risen slightly and blisters of air should be forming on the top surace. With tongs, lift the bread carefully at one end and look to see whether it has browned lightly underneath. If so, flip the naan over and cook for 1 minute longer.

8. When the naan is cooked on both sides, remove it from the wok. Keep wraped in a clean dish towel while you roll out and cook the remaining naan.

The baked naan freeze very well. Reheat, wrapped in foil, in the oven.


Filed under bread, food, savory

Could you ever forgive me, oh you mighty sprout?

In food matters, as in life, it´s easy to let go of our bias, even if they are based on previous experiences. If we don´t like something, or think we won´t like it, chances are we won´t go anywhere near it.

Thus, brussels sprouts and me were worlds apart until only very recently. You see, I remember the not-so-friendly odor emanating from brussel sprouts cooking in the microwave. It was baaaaaaad, I really don´t want to recreate the smell here because I don´t want to ruin your appetite. Needless to say, I tried it once and hated it, and the smell that kept emanating from brussel sprouts every time my mom cooked them only reinforced my ideas.


But, fortunately, thanks to food bloggers (I´m looking at Deb and Molly here) presenting delectable recipes using my nemesis, I began to reconsider. Besides, it was my duty as a food blogger to widen my food universe.

Well, I was wrong, oh so wrong, oh mighty brussel sprouts, how I offended thee!

You see, there´s no need to steam or boil them, you can just cut them and sauté them in a pan (or bake them in the oven if you are making a big batch). I use lemon juice so any sort of bitterness that might exist disappears, garlic, a bit of panceta and a touch of parmesan (yes, I do always use parmesan, it´s not my fault if it makes everything taste better!)


Now, for all you naysayers, give them a try, I swear they don´t taste like what you think brussel sprouts taste like! They caramelize slightly and marry the other flavors beautifully. Plus, it takes me 20 minutes since I come from the farmers market to have this at the table.

I do realize fresh brussel sprouts might be hard to come by at this time of the year for those of you in the Northern hemisphere. But, you can keep this in mind come next fall, AND I have to endure seeing wonderful cherries and beautiful rhubarb all around, so this time, the joke´s on you! hahaha I know that no one envies my fresh brussel sprouts, but I´m working with what I´ve got, people.


And for other first-time-trying-ingredients news, I made this cute brie sampler with grilled pears and arugula pesto to see if I liked brie, and I have to say I do! Not overly ripe though because I don´t get along with blue cheese.



(“recipe” after the jump)

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Filed under savory, vegetables

The one when Marce can´t make up her mind

I swear I haven´t completely forgotten I have a blog. It´s just that life has a way of distracting me quite often, and, to be honest, I´m lazier than I´d like to admit.

I actually have a couple of recipes waiting to be discussed, but seeing that I´m too lazy to translate and discuss two bread recipes, I turn to you so that you choose which recipe you´d prefer: a traditional Spanish bread that is very moist and doesn´t have any additional flavors and requiring more prep time, or a braided bread flavored with onion soup powder, oregano and some other spices.

Here are some pictures to help you decide. I´ll post the winner recipe tomorrow or during the weekend if there aren´t enough votes by tomorrow.

Hogaza gallega (yes, I´m aware of the fact that it looks kinda like a boob, but that was the way it was supposed to be, blame the author!)

hogaza gallega

Spicy braid

spicy braid


Filed under bread, rambling, savory

a perfect lunch… alternately titled “crusty borders, part II”

I´ve rarely talked about cheese here. It´s definitely NOT because I don´t like it, it´s just that it´s always there (try to find savory recipes of mine without parmessan cheese, I dare you!). And I rarely use fancy cheese, so I don´t have any excuse to stop and discuss this or that type of cheese.

provoleta 3

Well, today is that day, and the cheese is called “provoleta”. As you can guess is a sort of provolone cheese which is grilled to serve alongside our famous “asados” (barbecues.) Just imagine this: a big chunk of hard cheese put on a grill till it morphs into a crusty shell with a soft, gooey, cheesy interior.


The taste is that of provolone cheese, which is similar to parmessan, so you can just imagine how good this is.

provoleta... melting

I´m a bit of an embarrassment to my country in terms of my beef-eating habits, meaning I rarely eat beef, so I had a small piece of provoleta with a huge spinach salad and some of my homemade white batter bread. I don´t know about you, but that is my idea of a perfect lunch right there: crunchy, yet soft cheese, raw spinach and two incredible pieces of bread grilled along with the cheese.

provoleta 2

As there isn´t really a recipe for the provoleta, just with an invitation to come to Argentina and try it for yourself, I´m gonna give you the recipe for the white batter bread (courtesy of Deb), which is one of my favorite breads ever, is easy to make and doesn´t require kneading for those of you afraid of that part of bread-making.

white batter bread II

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend with at least one wonderful, perfect lunch… see you on Sunday with my first-ever Daring Bakers challenge! 🙂

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Filed under Argentina, bread, food, savory