A different Waldorf salad

wcloseupThis weekend we had, amongst other salads, a version of the classic Waldorf salad. Many guests praised it, which makes me want to reveal our recipe to you. I am normally not that keen on the classic Waldorf salad, because I find it too rich. Too much mayonnaise…

But this version is lighter and great to enjoy as a salad by itself or as a side salad to a meat dish, traditionally game, which also is in season right now. But really, it could be any kind of meat or poultry dish.

Serves 4:

1 lemon

1 big apple, quite acid

4 -5 celery stalks

150 grams of grapes

50-75 grams of walnuts

2-3 spoonful’s of Greek yogurt

Additionally 1 spoonful of mayonnaise

1 spoonful sugar

Grate half of the lemon and put the zest in a bowl with the juice.

Cut the apple in ½ cm cubes and put them in the bowl. Let the cubes soak well in the juice, to not oxidize.

Lightly peal the celery and slice them in approx. 3mm slices. Fill a small pot with water and put it to boil, add a pinch of salt and throw in the celery. Let them boil for two minutes and then cool them off in cold water (ice cubes). When cold, take them out and pat dry. Mix them with the apples.

Put the walnut in a hot oven for a few minutes to intensify their taste and make them crunchier. Crush them lightly on a chopping board with the side of a big kitchen knife.

Half the grapes and deseed them. Add them to the bowl together with the walnuts.

Then add the yogurt, sugar and if you like it a bit richer, the mayonnaise. Season it with salt and pepper and put it in the fridge for half an hour before serving. Taste again if it needs more salt and pepper, maybe a few drops of lemon or a little bit more sugar. And now it is ready to serve…

 

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Really!?! :-)

 

wife

The Spanish language is wonderful. I am so happy that I finally am getting the hang of it. But I must say it is a language that can surprise one.

For example; did you know, that the word esposa means wife.

But if you now say the same word in plural esposas”, just added “s”, it means “wives” or HANDCUFFS!!!

Honestly???!!! I kid you not!

 

   

DIY: The log lady

I like to bring nature into my home, so a couple of weeks ago I went to the place, where we buy firewood for our stove. I sought out some nice dry logs. It is very important, that they are dry, before you treat them. If you can’t find them dry, you have to have patience and wait!! (It is best if the logs are around two or three years) Arriving back home, I started polishing. You can use sand paper, but it is faster and easier to use an orbital sander. Which luckily my husband has! 😉 After removing all splinters and having sanded top and bottom smooth, you must treat the log against woodworm, termites, etc. 🙁 I used diesel, which I recommend to be done outside. When the log doesn’t stink anymore you can leave it, as it is, in its own natural colour and beauty. Give it a thorough waxing with wood furniture wax to make it look more “alive”. Or you can paint it with nice thick oil based paint. The white log is in our bathroom, where it functions as decoration, a door stop and a holder for the mobile phone. The unpainted ones are in our living room, where they decorate the room with candlelight or as book table.

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A bath room door stop.

log&lys

Logs&light

log3

Book table by a comfortable armchair, and my Denmark pillow.

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– and mobile holder, to avoid mobile phone accidents!! hehe

 

Health care system

otorinnolaringologiaLiving in Spain that long, we have, off course, been in contact with the Spanish health care system. Even though we come from Denmark where we pay A LOT in tax and supposedly have a really good health care system, we cannot find anything to complain about in the way we have been treated here.

The medicine is really cheap in Spain, which means that you almost can’t enter the doctor’s consultation without receiving a prescription for antibiotic and some kind of pain killers. Except from the time, where my nose broke after a cash meeting with my surf board. At that point my doctor told me to eat a lot of oranges!

Or when our daughter had ear problems and the specialist recommend a lot of trips to the beach, because salt water is good for cleaning the ears.

In both occasion they were actually right;-)

If I have to complain about something though, it must the titles of the different specialists. I find it really difficult to ask for direction to the “OTORRINOLATINGÓLOGO”!!!

   

Happy Valentine’s Day

Valentine

Roses, hearts, candlelights & delicious food.

I wish you all a Happy Valentine’s Day.

bordkort copy

Our Valentine’s menu:

Artichokes and pumpkin with mussels

Sweet potato and lemon fish with pickled chilli and dill

Beef rib with Thai inspiration

Pulled” lamb packed in filo paste, with mushrooms and onion

Custard apple with pistachio and salted caramel, “Sablé “ with vanilla and white chocolate

 

Bye, bye Safety Net

It is a big decision to pull your family up by the roots and settle down in a new country.  You have to be sure that this is what you want and if you go as a couple, that it is a big dream for both of you.

Moving abroad does put a relationship to the test. We were now spending all of our time together. We came from a life where we each had a minimum 37-hour working week, sport activities in our spare time, evening classes, etc. and now we were together 24-7. Additionally we didn’t know anybody else in the beginning, so it was important to learn a new way of relating to each other. Of the many other foreign couples we now know, moving abroad has either strengthened or destroyed their relationships.

In this kind of adventure the daily life quickly catches up with you and bills have to be paid. So if you are not one of the few lucky ones with big, fat Swiss bank account, a good advice is to be prepared or at least have an idea of what is going to be your livelihood abroad. We had a dream of starting a small hotel; I had been working with tourism for many years and Thomas as a chef. Our B-plan was a restaurant, which we now are happy for we ended up with. But there is a of lot challenges in moving abroad, learning another language and starting up a new business and therefore as mentioned before it is also incredibly important that both parties want, and feel up to leaving the security of home. At times, when the challenges seem insurmountable, a relationship quickly can become fragile.

Before we left Denmark in 2005 we made an agreement to move back if either of us became unhappy about living in Spain. But at this point we still haven’t dug out the suitcases with the intention of travelling home to Denmark for anything other than a holiday. And yes, we still say that we are “going home to Denmark”, but we also “go home to Spain” again.

FamilyDo

A young family has just arrived to Spain. A more recent photo will probably show a bit more wrinkles and gray hair;-)

 

Would we have done the same thing today in 2015??I honestly don’t know…. Mind you, we left before the recession, where everything was going well here in Spain and businesses thriving. Furthermore we assumed that if our little adventure should fail, it would be easy to return to Denmark and find work again.

 

My new hometown; Vejer

Vejer de la Frontera(on daily basis just called: Vejer) is a beautiful hilltop village on Costa de la Luz. It is very picturesque and has won a title of being the most beautiful village in Andalucía. It is situated in Cádiz province, which is not a very well known area of Spain. When we just arrived, only a few of our Danish family/friends had heard about the this place. We had to explain it was situated on the Atlantic coastline in between Gibraltar and Portugal. Not that we had known any better just a year earlier.

Honestly I cannot understand why this is such an overseen part of Spain. The temperatures are perfect; with July as the hottest month with an average temperature of 25°C (76°F) while the coldest is January at 12°C (54°F). The name Costa de la Luz means the Coast of Light and Cádiz province enjoys around 3060 hours of sunshine per year. Which is quite a difference from an average annual hours of sunshine in Denmark, which is 1495 hours.

Vejer de la Frontera

Vejer de la Frontera (Photo: S.Daly)

To wander around in Vejer is to arrive to another century. It is well-kept and the locals take pride in being Vejeriegans.Vejer street

orange tree

Orange tree (Photo: L.Rump)

Plaza España

Plaza de España

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vejer.

La Iglesia del Divino Salvador

   

Potato salad with spinach and toasted sesame

Potato salad with spinach and toasted sesame (serves 4)

Patria_07062010_082 Kartoffelsalat med spinat og ristet sesam

Photo: L.Rump

4 large potatoes

3 handfuls fresh spinach

2 spring onions

3-4 tablespoons white sesame seeds

3 tablespoons mayonnaise (preferably homemade)

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon sherry vinegar

Peel and cube the potatoes (1cm). Boil the cubes until tender, place in cold water to cool, and then drain.

Rinse the spinach in several batches of cold water and drain well (preferably using a salad spinner).

Finely chop the spring onions.

Toast the sesame seeds on a dry pan until golden and allow to cool. Be careful not to let them burn.

Make a salad dressing using the mayonnaise, mustard and vinegar. Mix the potatoes, spinach, spring onions and sesame seeds into the dressing (except keep some sesame seeds aside as garnish before serving). Add salt and pepper to taste. Bon appétit!

This potato salad is delicious and packed with flavours. If you make it during the summer, use baby new potatoes, which you boil until just done and then cut into halves or quarters.

 

10 years ago!!

Today, Sunday 8th of February, it is exactly 10 years ago we came to the hamlet, Najara, where we had rented a house for a year. We arrived in the evening and it was cold, dark and damp. As luck would have it, our arrival coincided with the coldest winter in 40 years. Temperatures plummeted to freezing point at night. This should of course be a piece of cake for a Dane, but when you take the construction of Spanish homes into account, this is by no means a laughing matter. There was no cavity wall insulation, central heating or floor heating. The only heat source was the fireplace in the kitchen, which heated the nearest one or two square meters as well as the chimney, while the rest of the house was damp and approximately 12 degrees Celsius. That night we were shivering in our beds and in doubts about what we were doing there. It is possible that we were somewhat naive, but this wasn’t exactly what we expected when we moved so close to Africa…

But the day after we happily discovered nine orange trees in our garden dripping with fruits and we enjoyed the most delicious oranges. They simply taste best when they’ve just been picked by your own hands.

Then we went into town and bought two electric radiators and woollen blankets.

Welcome to Southern Spain;-)OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Have an adventurous weekend!!

windmills in the mist 2windmills in the mist

“What giants?” asked Sancho Panza.
“The ones you can see over there,” answered his master, “with the huge arms, some of which are very nearly two leagues long.”

 

“Now look, your grace,” said Sancho, “what you see over there aren’t giants, but windmills, and what seems to be arms are just their sails, that go around in the wind and turn the millstone.”

 

“Obviously,” replied Don Quijote, “you don’t know much about adventures.”
Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Don Quixote