Persimmon Parfait, Spinach Soup and Sauerkraut

Sweet, creamy, cold; warm, chunky, spicy; crunchy, sweet, salty, sour… Yum yum yum. Tantalising the tastebuds, tingling the sensations, putting smiles on our faces, makes life so interesting and exciting.

I come up with new concoctions through visualising the final dish/presentation in my head first then slowly pull ingredients together to recreate what I’ve visualised. It’s really quite fun. When I see something interesting on paper or TV, I don’t follow the ingredients, I remember the image and then pull ingredients I have in my cupboard to then imitate the image that I saw. It’s fun and the result is something out of the ordinary and always a welcome surprise. Whenever my husband comes home and sits down for a meal, he will ask what’s in front of him and I always say, something I made up which always makes him weary! Poor thing, he’s always my guinea pig. BUT in my defence, it (almost) always turns out delicious!

This is where breakfast comes into my first experimentation. I love parfaits for breakfast, lunch and dinner if I can help it. I’m a sucker for sweet, creamy, crunchy dishes. We’ve had our share of parfaits in Paul, More Cafe, Le Pain Quotidien in Dubai and I’m keen to bring the memories back.. (oh I miss Dubai). Having had the persimmons for some time now in the fridge, getting too soft, I decided to combine and create a Korean Parfait using bananas, persimmons, grape yoghurt and the last remaining bar of Strawberry Nutrigrain Bar.

Just layer the 4 ingredients as you go, either in a bowl or even fancier in a tall glass for the lovely visual and colour effect. We do eat with our eyes right? I know I do. A side of warm milo, sets up a great start to the day I reckon.

For a bit of a snacky, coffee at Beans & Berries and Buttercrunch Toffee Cookie while waiting for the big man to finish work. It was a cold, icy evening, biting wind that chills you to the bone. Nose leaking, face numb, speech compromised, eyes blurry, goosebumps galore, the winter here’s going to be harsh, I can tell and I’m afraid, I’m very afraid. How am I going to last through this one? And it’s going to be my first one! Oh dearie me. I am predicting a lot of hot chocolates, hot soups, woollies, jumpers, puffer jackets, oh dear, I’ll be a walking marshmallow girl! Better safe than sorry I guess.

For dinner, crunchy meat and vege dumplings and some scrumptious hot spinach soup. One thing I love about this place is that there’s dumplings galore! All types and shapes, always on special, always samples available and always filled with actual meat and vegetables unlike some that are just filled with glutinous fillers. My favourite are the kimchi flavoured ones, the spicier the better! And along side, there’s always a bowl of garlic soybean sauce. Beats tomato sauce any time! My husband’s a changed man!

For the spinach soup, pure and simply;

1 bunch of spinach

2 medium onions

4 garlic cloves

3 green chillies

2 bunches of coriander

All I did was put all the ingredients in a pot, chopped and covered. The vegetables will cook by itself through the liquid that comes out from it through steam for 5-10 mins, turn off the heat and leave to cool.

Then add some water, grab the hand blender and whizz away till smooth. Add in (silken) tofu for added protein, creaminess and smoothness. Done! Enjoy!

And then for dessert, more persimmons, apples and gorgeous nashi pears!

And a little project last night, I made sauerkraut! Yay, finally! I’ve always wanted to eat sauerkraut and I finally motivated myself to make it. Having a fermentation craze at the moment, I’ve been reading a lot about fermentation, enzymes and how it does wonders for the body, providing good flora just like probiotics would for the intestines, I found a simple sauerkraut recipe and with just 3 ingredients I decided to finally do it!

Looked at my hands this morning, there’s a slight hue of purple from the red cabbage with a lingering smell of carrots! And the magical last ingredient was salt. Bashed and bruised, I pressed it into the jar and left it in a dark place for fermentation. I was advised for 1 week if there wasn’t a warm place so 1 week it shall be before I can try this little beauty! Have you fermented anything recently? I’d like to hear about it and would be keen to try out some new simple recipes. One day I shall try making my own kimchi!