Oven Roasted Trout with Fresh Herbs

One of my all time favourite fish recipes is this one: a whole trout roasted in the oven and filled with herbs, lemon, onion, and garlic. It reminds me of lovely summer evenings, when the sun is still shining, the temperature is still warm, and the white wine is cold.fresh oven roasted troutGo to your local fish shop, ask for whole trouts, scaled and gutted (unless you are a really tough person and want to do this all by yourself). Choose some fresh herbs of your choice, chop them up along with a red pepper, and stuff the trout. You can add any other elements that you like, such as spring onions, or shallots, or garlic, and so on.fresh oven roasted troutWhat you’ll end up with is a stunningly flavoured fish with meat that comes right of the bones. It is a wonderful light dinner to make and to eat! You could also wrap the trout in tin foil and place it on the barbeque for that true summer feel!fresh oven roasted trout

Some delicious pairings:

Oven Roasted Trout with Fresh Herbs

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Time: 35 min
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 3-4 fresh trouts (gutted and scaled)
  • 10 grams mint
  • 10 grams parsley
  • 1-2 red chili pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 shallots
  • 1-2 lemon
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Used kitchen appliances

  • Oven
  • Baking tray
  • Baking foil

Preparation

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200C. Place a sheet of baking foil on the tray.
  2. Finely chop the fresh herbs and chili pepper together. Slice the garlic, shallots, and lemon.
  3. Place the herbs in the trout. Add the garlic, shallots, and lemon.
  4. Pour some olive oil over the trout, and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Roast in the oven for 25 minutes or until cooked through.

Broccoli Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes and Pine Nuts

Summertime means salads. Light and fresh meals or side dishes that are quick to make and even quicker to eat (because they’re so delicious).broccoli salad

One of my favourites is this Broccoli Salad, that can be eaten with any fish, any meat, or any vegetarian main course. To enhance the flavour of the broccoli, it is of high importance to not overcook it. Please don’t ever overcook broccoli, because it will turn into a snotty, slimy, bad-smelling vegetable that you would not want to put in your mouth. Best under-cook it, and leave it to steam in a closed pan for a minute or 2. broccoli salad

The broccoli provides the bite to the salad, perfectly complemented by the savoury sweetness of the sun dried tomatoes, and the crunch of the spring onions and earthy flavour of the pine nuts. It’s a Mediterranean feast on a plate!

Broccoli Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes and Pine Nuts

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 15 min
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 broccoli
  • 1 shallot
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 3-4 spring onions
  • 80 grams pine nuts
  • 50 grams sun dried tomatoes
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Used kitchen appliances

  • Large pan

Preparation

  1. Remove the lower part of the broccoli stem. Cut the rest of the stem in pieces. Slice the broccoli into uneven florets. Place them in the pan, and add enough water to cover the vegetable. Bring to the boil, and let simmer on medium heat for about 6 minutes.
  2. Finely chop the onion and garlic. Slice the spring onions and sun dried tomatoes. Place them in a salad bowl, along with the pine nuts.
  3. Drain the broccoli. Add to the salad bowl. Pour over the olive oil and mix. Season to taste.

Zucchini Mint Soup with Smoked Salmon

I don’t know about the rest of the world but it’s been abnormally warm in The Netherlands this week, with the temperature reaching 35 degrees in some places. It’s lovely though if you have vacation (like me) and can go to the beach with friends when you want (like me).zucchini soup

When it is as hot as it is now in this country, I prefer to only eat popsicles and drink water (or cold beers). However, you do need some more nutrition than that, so soups and salads are my go to dinner foods. Having an excess amount of zucchini resulted in the making of this lovely soup, made even fresher by the addition of mint leaves. Combined with the salty smoked salmon, it has got everything you want in a summertime soup. Besides, adding the smoked salmon to the warm soup, almost makes it so the salmon is poached, which is a delicious flavour sensation!zucchini soup

Remember: drink loads of water, apply sunscreen, and don’t stay in the sun for too long! I’m gonna have a great time next Saturday, standing in an open field in 38C. Fortunately, it will be to finally see Mumford & Sons play a live show, so I’m all good.

Enjoy your day!

Zucchini Mint Soup with Smoked Salmon

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 15 min
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 onion
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 zucchini
  • 1 liter water + 2 stock cubes (or 1 liter stock)
  • Fresh mint leaves
  • 2 tbsp sour cream or creme fraiche
  • 100 grams smoked salmon

Used kitchen appliances

  • Large soup pan
  • Blender

Preparation

  1. Finely slice the onion and garlic. Heat some olive oil in the pan on medium heat. Glaze the onion and garlic for about 4 minutes.
  2. In the meantime, dice the zucchini. Add to the pan and bake for another 4 minutes
  3. Add the water and stock cubes and let it boil for about 8 minutes.
  4. Add the sour cream and a handful of mint leaves. Use a blender to mix all the ingredients together.
  5. Season to taste. Serve with some mint leaves and the smoked salmon.

Mexican Burgers with Avocado, Fried Egg & Tomato Salsa

Well, well, look who decided to show her face on here once more. The last couple of weeks have been quite life changing for me. I finished my 9-month graduation placement, handed in my thesis, and done my thesis defense. And what do you know…

I GRADUATED!!!everybody dance now the office

So yeah, after all the stress and nerves I just had to relax and sit down to read a book. However, I did have time to make this wonderfully easy burger! It’s sort of inspired by Mexican cuisine, and may I say that it is mighty delicious.IMG_1602When you bite through the crunchy bread, the egg yolk starts running slightly, and combines its silky flavour with the intense tomato salsa and the freshness of the coriander. Add to this the creamy avocado and the stunning burger, and you’ve got yourself a fiesta in your mouth! IMG_1605

Also, it literally takes you about 15 minutes to make. Fun times.

Mexican Burger with Avocado, Fried Egg & Tomato Salsa

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 15 min
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 4 burgers
  • 4 crunchy bread rolls
  • 2 avocados
  • 4 eggs
  • 100 grams rocket lettuce
  • 4 tomatoes
  • 4 spring onions
  • 1 or 2 chili peppers (depending on how spicy you want the salsa to be)
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1-2 tsp of sugar

Used kitchen appliances

  • 2 frying pans
  • 1 mixing bowl

Preparation

  1. Start with the tomato salsa: Finely dice the tomatoes, slice the onions, and place in the mixing bowl. Remove the seeds from the peppers, chop the cilantro, and add to the tomatoes. Pour over the lime juice and sugar. Mix and season to taste. Leave in the fridge. For an optimal result you could make this beforehand.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp of oil/butter in both frying pans. Bake the burgers on a medium heat until cooked (about 8-10 min). Fry the eggs on a medium heat as well, about 5 minutes so the yolk stays runny.
  3. Slice the avocado (find out how here). Slice the bread rolls in half horizontally. Place some rocket lettuce on the bottom, add the avocados, the burger, the tomato salsa, and the fried egg on top. Top it with the other half of the bread.

The Secrets of Sweet Sunday

Oh my god, you guys!! My blog has celebrated it’s very first birthday yesterday and I completely forgot about it!

Thank you all for your sweet comments and follows during the past year, and I promise that I’ll get back dedicating my time to the blog asap!

As a celebration, I thought it would be nice to share some overview posts of what I’ve been cooking and baking this past year. In today’s post, enjoy the secret recipes -meaning the recipes that did not have the engagement I think they deserve, mainly because of the lack of followers in the first month of Basil and Oil. A list of  the Underdogs  of Sweet Sunday!

Red Berry Pavlovared berry pavlova

Blueberry Nectarine Popsiclespopsicles

Banana Walnut MuffinsBanana Walnut Muffins

Cranberry Ripple CheesecakeCranberry Ripple Cheesecake

Yogurt with Candied Pecans á la Vincephoto 1 (1)

Sweet Sunday – Blueberry Nutella Brownie

I have previously talked about my undying love for Nutella. So a recipe like this was long overdue. Better late than never, right.

Also, it’s kind of a celebration present to myself for successfully finishing my placement, which means one step closer to graduation! Party-time!blueberry nutella brownie

We all know (and love) brownies, not only because they so often contain a high amount of chocolate, but also because it is such a versatile recipe. You can basically add in any fruit or nut that you love, and create your very own brownie. Honestly, I hardly ever make them myself, just because I know that I cannot resist eating bite after bite. Oh well, that’s what makes life worth it right.blueberry nutella brownie

Adding Nutella to a brownie only seemed like the most logical choice I could make. I also added more salt than I would usually add to a recipe, but I adore the combination of salt and Nutella. The salt adds more depth and flavour to the delicious chocolatey substance. It’s amazing.blueberry nutella brownie

One warning though! Be sure to cool the melted butter a bit before you add the eggs, otherwise you’ll end up with some kind of chocolate omelette…

Relax and enjoy this wonderfully sticky and crunchy brownie!

Blueberry Nutella Brownie

  • Servings: 10-12
  • Time: 35 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 150 grams butter
  • 150 grams Nutella
  • 200 grams light brown caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 150 grams self raising flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 100 grams blueberries

Used kitchen appliances

  • Oven
  • Brownie Tin
  • Small pan
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Sieve

Preparation

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C. Grease the brownie tin with butter.
  2. Melt the butter in the small pan on a low heat. Place the Nutella in a mixing bowl. Add the butter, and whisk until combined. Proceed to mix in the sugar. Let cool slightly.
  3. Add the eggs and vanilla extract and whisk until combined thoroughly.
  4. Sieve the flour over the Nutella mixture. With a wooden spoon, mix until combined.
  5. Pour the batter in the brownie tin and scatter the blueberries over the top.
  6. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the sides are hard, but the middle is spongy. Let cool in the tin for about 5 minutes, after which you can let it cool completely on a wire rack.

Sweet Sunday – Traditional Dutch Apple Pie

Birthday means cake. Birthday means choosing your own cake. In my family, birthday means choosing what cake Lisa has to make. This week it was my sister’s turn. Her choice has been the same for many years: Apple Pie. 

 I always make the traditional Dutch Apple Pie, which is almost always served with whipped cream, and if you really want to go overboard, you add a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Although, this is actually best when your pie is fresh out of the oven, so the ice oozes all over the pie… 

 Honestly, I am not a big fan of apple pie, for no particular reason. It just doesn’t do it for me. This is different for the rest of The Netherlands though, you’ll see people eating the pie with their coffee at around 11 in the morning . And you’ll find it on almost every menu.

There are two Dutch apple pie varieties: the lattice pie (which is the one I make, and which is most popular) and the crumb pie. They are basically made in the same way, and taste the same way. The difference lies in the texture of the pastry. 

 I believe the main distinction between the Dutch apple pies and the American or British ones, is the fact that these pies are always double-crusted, so pastry at the bottom and on top. Also, the Dutch pie is never covered all the way with pastry.

However, I bet apple pie lovers will find all these various varieties to be delicious. I would like to state that the Dutch one is probably the best though (you know, national pride and all that). Enjoy!!

Traditional Dutch Apple Pie

  • Servings: 10-12
  • Time: 2 hr and 15 min
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 300 grams plain flour
  • 125 grams white caster sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 175 grams butter
  • 1 egg
  • 750 grams apples (Dutch varieties: Elstar and Goudrenet)
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 60 grams sugar
  • Optional: handful of raisins

Used kitchen appliances

  • Oven
  • Springform
  • 2 Mixing bowls
  • Sieve
  • Rolling pin
  • Cling foil

Preparation

  1. Sieve the flour, sugar and salt over the mixing bowl. Dice the butter and add to the bowl. Rub the butter in the flour with your fingertips until a crumbly dough is formed. Add the egg and knead into a ball with cold hands.
  2. Cover 1/3 of the dough in cling foil. Grease the springform with butter. Cover the bottom and sides of the springform with the rest of the dough. Place the form and the ball of dough in the fridge and let rest for 30 minutes.
  3. In the meantime, peel the apples and slice. Place in the mixing bowls and add the cinnamon, sugar and lemon juice (optional: add raisins). Stir the mixture, place in the form and return it to the fridge.

  4. Preheat the oven to 175C. On a dusted surface, roll out the dough ball and form about 8 thin slices. Place them on the apple mixture in a braiding method (one slice should first go above one slice and then underneath another one and so on) – or you could just lay them out on the pie as you want.
  5. Bake in the oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Take out of the oven and leave to cool in the form.

If you’d like another amazing Apple Pie recipe, try Bustrengo! An Italian apple pie made with polenta!

Sweet Sunday – Classic French Madeleines

For the first time since 1,5 month, there’s a Sweet Sunday post! And it’s a good one if I may say so myself.

I always deemed Madeleines as impossible to make, because 1. I did not have a madeleine tin, and 2. I did not know how to get that soft texture of the cookies, and 3. I was afraid to try.classic french madeleines

However, turns out that it actually is incredibly easy to make these beautiful small cakes, especially when you finally do have a tin! The main thing to keep in mind though, is to ensure that there is a lot of air in the batter. First step is to whisk eggs, sugar, and vanilla extract together, at which point you will need to keep beating until the mixture is thick yet fluffy.classic french madeleinesWith an electric whisk, it will probably take you about 5-7 minutes. If you use the traditional good ole’ manual whisk, like myself, it’ll take about 10-15 minutes. Just put on an episode of your favourite show (it was Family Guy for me this time) and keep whisking! You’ll even get some great toned arms in the process, win-win!classic french madeleinesAfter beating the crap out of those eggs and sugar, a more delicate step follows. Sieving the flour is in this case of high importance, as you want to prevent any lumps forming in your batter. Furthermore, the melted butter is added by pouring it against the sides of your mixing bowl. Why do this? To not let out all the air of the egg/sugar mixture that you just so formidably made.classic french madeleines

All that succeeds this, is baking the Madeleines for just 10 minutes. After which you can indulge in the soft, springy cakes that have a wonderfully elegant aroma of vanilla. Bon appétit!

French Madeleines

  • Servings: 10 madeleines
  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 60 grams (1/2 cup) butter
  • 60 grams (1/2 cup) white caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 60 grams (1/2 cup) self rising flour

Used kitchen appliances

  • Oven
  • Small pan
  • Madeleine tin
  • Brush
  • Mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Sieve.

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C or 360F. In the small pan, melt the butter on a low heat. Let cool once melted.
  2. Use a brush to lightly grease the madeleine tin.
  3. In the mixing bowl, add the eggs, sugar, and vanilla extract. Whisk until the mixture is pale, thick, and has doubled in size.
  4. Gently sieve the flour over the mixture. Pour in the melted butter via the sides of the mixing bowl. Do not pour it in the middle of the mixture!
  5. Fill the madeleine tin with the batter, and bake in the oven for 10 minutes or until golden.

The madeleines will keep in an airtight container for about 1 day.

 

Dutch White Asparagus with Ham, Eggs, & Melted Butter

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Time for the White Gold, the Dutch pride; the white asparagus.white asparagus

These wonderful stalks of deliciousness are best somewhere between the beginning of April and the end of June. When exactly can the asparagus be harvested, completely depends on the temperature of the ground. Harsh winters make for a late harvest, sometimes at the end of May. Luckily, this winter was quite warm, meaning that the asparagus harvest began at the end of April!white asparagus
Via friends of my father, we were able to get the true Dutch asparagus, all the way from the southern province of Limburg. This region is best suited for asparagus cultivation due to the sandy ground and the relatively regular climate.white asparagus

Personally, I find that asparagus -especially the white variety- should be eaten as they are. I’m a purist when it comes to this stunning vegetable. The flavour of the asparagus is so extraordinary and significant, that it should only be accompanied by softer ingredients.white asparagus

My favourite recipe ever is one with white asparagus, diced ham, hard boiled eggs, and melted butter. What’s your preferred way of eating asparagus? Do you prefer the green or the white sort?

Dutch White Asparagus with Ham, Eggs, & Melted Butter

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: moderate
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Ingredients

  • 12 white asparagus
  • 300 grams ham
  • 8 eggs
  • 60 grams butter
  • Optionalsmall potatoes

Used kitchen appliances

  • Asparagus pan (if you don’t have this, take a pan with a large diameter)
  • Vegetable peeler
  • Small pan

Preparation

  1. Remove the bottoms of the asparagus. Peel the outer skin of the stalks. Place the skin and bottom in the pan (for even more flavour), as well as the stalks. Pour in enough water for the asparagus to be covered. Bring to the boil, and let boil for about 15 minutes (depending on the thickness of the stalks)
  2. In the meantime, dice the ham and hard boil the eggs for 8 minutes.
  3. Test to see if the asparagus are done by pricking a fork in the stalk, which should be soft yet firm. Drain the water.
  4. Roughly chop the eggs.
  5. In the small pan, heat the butter on a low heat until melted. Place the asparagus on a plate, with the ham and eggs, and pour over the butter.

Serve with bread or small potatoes.