Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
I woke up this morning with a huge craving for chocolate chip cookies. It had been a long time since I last had them, and as I had just found some pure maple syrup on discount the other day, I decided it was about time to bake them again.

For some reason, chocolate chips are only sold during Christmas and Easter here (or at least I haven't found them any other time of year), so I had to start by chopping some chocolate. I just place the dark chocolate in a freezer bag on top of a cutting board, and hit it with a wooden potato masher. This can be a little noisy, and one embarrassing time my downstairs neighbor - a sweet, older man - actually climbed upstairs and knocked on the door to check if everything was ok! This method also doesn't result in perfect-shaped, beautiful chocolate chips - but it's the taste that matters, right? ;)

This is by far the best recipe I have found for vegan chocolate chip cookies. It doesn't use any egg replacer, flax seeds, soy flour, or anything else, yet the cookies stay together beautifully. Most of the time I use spelt flour and 70 % dark chocolate. Pure maple syrup is outrageously expensive in Denmark, and unless I find it on real discount like this week, I often replace half of it with agave nectar.

It's hard to decide if I like the cookies or the dough more - but I tend to incline towards the dough. Even if you're not vegan, these cookies are worth making just because the dough doesn't have any raw eggs in it and is therefore safe to eat. 

The dough is super fast to make and the cookies bake in 11 minutes - so in about 20 minutes, you can have a batch of fresh chocolate chip cookies!

I have a ridiculously small oven, and to avoid dividing this small amount of dough into two batches, I tend to place the cookies a little too close to each other. This results in that I have to cut them apart and they're not that pretty to look at, but when I only bake these to family or friends, I don't care too much. They taste just as delicious! However, if you want beautiful, evenly-shaped cookies, leave enough space between them, as these spread out quite a bit.

I love the gooey chocolate in the warm cookies. The chopped chocolate naturally melts more unevenly than real chocolate chips, but I kind of like it that way.

I served these with a small glass of oat milk. I don't really like drinking any kind of milk, but this has added calcium so I try to consume a glass daily - usually with cereal or oatmeal, though.

The animal glass in the background was bought with a giftcard from Villeroy & Boch last Christmas, and it makes me smile every time I look at it. I realize it's a bit funny since I don't have children or anything, but I guess I'm just weird like that. ;) The glass is very small, and will just fit one squeezed orange, so it's the perfect breakfast glass.

Do you have a favorite cookie recipe?
posted by Seglare at Tuesday, August 31, 2010 | Permalink | 5 comments
Monday, August 30, 2010
Marinated Mushrooms
I tasted amazing marinated mushrooms at the 'veggie festival' this weekend. They tasted so good that I immediately knew I wanted to recreate the dish at home. Unfortunately, I forgot to take the exact recipe with me, and had to improvise to get a similar flavor.

I prefer brown mushrooms, as I think they have more flavor; but feel free to use any kind you like.

I learned this trick from my Mom some time ago. When you crush the garlic glove with the blade of a knife, the skin comes off like a coat. This may be old knowledge to most of you, but it has made such a difference to me. I still hate peeling garlic with a passion, but this has made it tolerable. Does anyone know a similar trick for peeling onion?!

Marinated Mushrooms

  • 0,5 lbs brown button mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 tbsp mushroom soy sauce (or regular light soy sauce)
  • 1 fat garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 tbsp resh parsley, chopped
  • pinch of white pepper
Place all the marinade ingredients in a bowl, and mix well. Clean the mushrooms and trim off and discard the ends of the stems. Add the mushrooms in the mixing bowl, and cover with the marinade. Let them marinate for about 30 minutes (or longer, if you have the time).

Pour the mushroom mixture into a frying pan, and stir fry for a few minutes, until most liquid is absorbed. Garnish with fresh parsley, and serve immediately.

The mushrooms turned out really well and were just as tasty as the ones at the festival. I believe the original recipe used dill in place of parsley and salt instead of soy sauce, and might have had some ingredients that I can't remember.

To accompany the mushrooms, I made a quick wok with a green bell pepper, a small leek, two average sized carrots, and a couple of tomatoes.

I stir friend them for a few minutes, and then added a can of mixed beans (red kidney beans, chickpeas, lima beans). In the end, I mixed in some shopped fresh basil and parsley. Unfortunately, I hardly ever measure the spices, but I used garlic salt with herbs, some mushroom soy sauce, a little sweet chili sauce, and a tiny squirt of ketchup.

This flavorful dish was ready in no time!

On the side, I enjoyed this beautiful corn on the cob from yesterday's veggie bag.

...and for dessert, I had some delicious organic 70% dark chocolate. ;)

posted by Seglare at Monday, August 30, 2010 | Permalink | 1 comments
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Veggie Festival
After the flea market on Saturday, we walked home and stumbled upon a 'vegetable festival'. It was around closing time, so we didn't look around,  but decided to come back the next day. It looked like there was a small farmer's market, and wanted to come back and see if we could buy some fresh vegetables there. 

We went back early this morning. Apparently, the festival is part of a big food exhibition taking place in Copenhagen this weekend. The exhibition had an entrance fee, and as budget-savvy students, we decided not to venture inside. However, outside the exhibition hall there were a number of stands that you could visit for free. Many of the stands were cutting up free fruit and veggies to taste, and others were cooking and giving out taste samples of delicious vegetarian food. You could have eaten a big vegetarian buffet for a fair price, too, but we had just had brunch and were not too hungry.

 We talked to a number of vendors and local farmers, all of whom were super friendly. There was a big selection of locally grown, organic fruits and veggies on display, and I was prepared to spend most of next week's grocery budget there. However, this is when the biggest - and happiest - surprise happened...

When we approached the people to buy some of their veggies - starting with a delicious-smelling, big pot of fresh basil - they told us that it was all free, and they proceeded to fill a bag with veggies to sample for each of us. Living in one of the world's most expensive cities, we could barely believe it! We ended up coming home with a week's worth of veggies - all free of charge, organic, and most locally grown. Such a happy ending for the weekend! The only things I did buy were half a bag of tomatoes (ridiculously cheap at 7,5 kr - about 1 €) and a box of brown button mushrooms.

My loot: Hokkaido squash, corn, bell pepper, snack pepper, beet, plum, green beans, leek, basil, parsley. I also got some bananas, cucumber, and a bag of baby carrots that I forgot to include in the picture.

I love fresh basil so much. I could smell this lovely bunch the whole time on my bike trip home, and can't wait to use it up. The first thing at home, I planted it in a pot, so I hope it will survive on my kitchen window for a long time to come!

Have a lovely Sunday! :)
posted by Seglare at Sunday, August 29, 2010 | Permalink | 0 comments
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Treasure-hunting at Frederiksberg Flea
The weekend started with a trip to a big outdoors flea market on Saturday morning. I believe Frederiksberg flea market is the biggest outdoors market in Copenhagen, and is always filled with people, both vendors and customers. The stands and people change every weekend, so you never know what you're going to get - it could be anything from real antique treasures to gently used baby clothes or hand-made jewellery.

Going to the market in the summer weekends has been a hobby of mine and my good friend's ever since we moved to Copenhagen a couple of years ago. My friend is the queen of finding designer clothes for ridiculously low prices; and while I don't always have her patience to browse through countless of boxes, bags, and racks of second-hand clothing in search for the perfect dress, I have a soft spot for antique teddy bears (the really, really old ones). Unfortunately, these bears are difficult to find these days; but if you go really early, you may get lucky. I have a small collection of these old bears from the early 1900's, but most of them are currently residing at my parents' place.

The bear in the picture is from the 60's and is much younger than the ones I usually collect. However, I thought he looked so cute sitting there alone that I couldn't help but ask him for a photo!
I almost bought the bear on the right - for 25 kr! - but then realized I had no idea where to place him in my small apartment. He is not a real antique bear, but certainly a special bear. 

This time, we ended up buying a few baby items for my sister's coming baby and not much else, but it's always fun just to look around. My friend found a few designer clothes for herself, and I got a cute light-green dress from Bruuns Bazaar (a Danish designer). The dress is much too summery to wear this year I'm afraid, but maybe next summer?

My friend moved to Ireland earlier this summer, so it had been a couple of months since we last went to the market together. So glad she's back for a visit!
posted by Seglare at Saturday, August 28, 2010 | Permalink | 2 comments
Friday, August 27, 2010
The Blog is Born
Welcome! I thought a blog would be a fun way to keep in touch with family and friends - many of whom live far, far away - and everyone else who's interested in reading about my daily adventures in Copenhagen. I always have my camera with me, so I will try to share many pictures with you, too.

While I tackle a final year in law school, there may be times when the blog is mostly a photo diary od my life and interesting things I've come across; and when I have more time, there will be more - and longer - written stories. 

I hope you will check back often, and please feel free to leave a comment. :)

The pictures below were taking during a long bike trip a few days ago. The rain was looming overhead and dark clouds were gathering in the sky for most part of the trip, but it only started raining during the last mile or so. The rain was enough to soak us thoroughly, but at that point, it didn't really matter, as warm shower, dry clothes and a mug of hot chocolate were just a few blocks away.
posted by Seglare at Friday, August 27, 2010 | Permalink | 2 comments