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Cookie Time

Hazelnut Cookies | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

I can’t believe that in a week time it’ll be the very half of the year.
2012, you’re going fast !
In the same time, I look forward to this second half of year. Travel and meeting people, new and loved ones, make me all excited about this time to come !
Anticipation works like a good fuel…

But for now it’s about these cookies. Light and nutty. Hazelnut-y I should say.
If you have followed the blog for a while, you should know by now that when it comes to nut, I’m all for it.

Hazelnut Cookies | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Like walnut, hazelnut has an interesting pattern on the shell and on the nut itself, with in plus this beautiful warm colour that gave its name to a shade of brown.
Lovable all around !

From hazelnut, the cookies keep none of the visual characteristics but its taste, which is enough to qualify them as good. And after reading this who knows they might have mighty power too…
They are yet another version of those cookies.

Hazelnut and Chocolate Cookies | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Hazelnut Cookies
Makes 25-30

210gr flour
80gr ground hazelnut
200gr unsalted butter, soften and diced
60gr finely ground brown sugar or icing sugar
200gr chocolate for dipping (optional)

In a bowl mix with your hand all the ingredients to form a smooth paste. Let it rest covered in a cool place (not the fridge) for 30 minutes to one hour. Butter two baking trays -or line them with baking paper. Preheat oven to 180°C/356°F. Roll down the dough on a lightly floured work surface and cut out cookies. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden. Remove carefully from oven (they will be still soft) on to a cooling rack. Melt chocolate in a water bath and dip half cookie in it or alternatively just coat with a spatula half of each cookie with chocolate.

© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Hazelnut Cookies

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On Comfort

© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Gorgonzola and Walnut Buckwheat Crepe

If the sun is back now, the past days have been chilly and wet if not windy. And as days are getting shorter down here in the southern hemisphere, they prompt us to look for comfort.
In food, this notion might vary from one person to another. A feeling that might be triggered by a smell, a taste or a very specific dish.
To me, the smell of bread baking in the oven, is definitely soothing. It’s such a pleasure to hear the crust cracking and have a taste of the freshly baked loaf with a spread of cheese or butter.
Cheering too, the delicate aroma of quince slowly roasting. And in reward for hours of cooking, a fragrant, rosy and melting fruit. Simply excellent served with a dollop of sour cream and roughly chopped walnuts.
And nothing better than a bowl of hot and creamy soup to keep warm on a cool evening…

© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Quince and Autumnal Foliage

The season and the goods brought back from our Wairarapa expedition have been a source of inspiration in the kitchen. Loving nuts like I do, it’s no surprise that walnuts were used almost everywhere. Like with those buckwheat crêpes or galettes as we call them in French in that case.
Paprika and I usually eat part of the crêpes in a savory way and the rest in dessert. I prepared this time a quick cream with blue cheese. Served on top of the galettes with freshly cracked walnuts and a bowl of lettuce on the side. Simple yet rich with a cheesy sauce that makes it truly comforting.

© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Plated Roasted Quince and Walnut Bread with Cheese
© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Sunchoke Soup & Crate with Pears
© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Crepes and Gorgonzola cheese
Buckwheat Crêpes/ Galettes (makes about 15)

215g buckwheat flour
1 egg
600ml milk
1 pinch of salt

Blue Cheese Filling (for 2 persons)

180g cream (sour or crème fraîche)
80g blue cheese (gorgonzola or what is available to you)
Half a dozen walnuts, freshly cracked.
Pear, core removed and finely sliced (optional)

In a bowl mix flour, egg and salt. Add gradually milk and mix to get a smooth batter. Cook crêpes on each side on a well greased frypan over medium-high heat.
In a saucepan, over low fire stir together cream and crumbled cheese until the cheese has melted. Serve on top of pancakes (2 to 3 per person) and garnish with walnuts on top (and slices pear if added)

© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Gorgonzola and Walnut Buckwheat Crepe

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Harvest Time

© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Wairarapa Road & Autumnal Foliage

It was rather impromptu.
Paprika stumbled upon the information on Saturday and a day later we were on the road. The winding road that leads to Wairarapa. And the main purpose of our visit in this region was grapes picking.

The leaves of the vine had turned into a nice shade of gold, the grass was wet with the morning dew and the air was crisp. Autumn was unmistakable. Located nearby Greytown, the Fantail Grove opened its door a last week-end for table grapes picking.

© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Olive grove Wairarapa
© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Vineyard Wairarapa
© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Grapes Autumn Wairarapa PYO
© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Picking Grapes
© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Picking Grapes Wairarapa NZ

After filling our bucket with grapes, we chatted with the friendly owner and made a round of the grove where hazelnuts and olives are grown as well. Of course, we left not only with lot of grapes, but aromatic quinces and a bag of hazelnuts all from the grove.

After a late lunch at Saluté, we simply strolled and enjoyed the special atmosphere created by the beautiful autumnal colours. From time to time, we also stopped by small shops and stands along the road and we kept on adding to our lot of produce walnuts and jerusalem artichokes.

Autumn is not over yet, but it feels so rich to me this year…

© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Hazelnuts and Fall Tree
© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Autumn Haul
© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Sign and Autumnal Foliage

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© 2012 Viviane Perenyi Chestnuts in a basket © 2012 Viviane Perenyi Wairarapa Coast © 2012 Viviane Perenyi Blueberries

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