Greece

Ćevapi (Cevapcici)

Ćevapi (Cevapcici)

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A few  years after I was born, the German “Wirtschaftswunder” (Economic Miracle) was in full swing (I wonder if my existence helped?), and Germany was in need of a new, different kind of army – an army of workers, to fill all the open labor-positions. It was the time (1955) when Germany invited millions of “Gastarbeiter” (Guest Workers) to come and make their luck and life in Germany. Mostly poor, working class people from Italy, Spain, Greece, Turkey, Portugal and eventually, in 1968, Yugoslavia, took a chance and started a new life in this new promised land, first alone, working very hard, saving money, learning the language and customs and then, usually a couple of years later, having their family join them and slowly but surely integrating themselves and their families, and most of them eventually becoming Germans. (Passport, language, customs, and all) 🙂
I don’t want to go into the political, economic and social results of this enormous “Völkerwanderung” (Human Migration), but rather talk about the effect it had on the culinary landscape.
Up until then, there were basically three culinary styles in Germany –
“Deutsche Hausmanskost”, which translates into plain home cooking
“Deutsche Koch Kunst”, or German Culinary Arts, meals that are as pleasing to the eye as to the palate,  primarily available in upper-class restaurants, hotels, and delicatessens.
“Traditional French Cuisine”, also mainly available in upper-class restaurants, hotels, and delicatessens.
Of course, this all changed rapidly with the influx of millions of people cooking the traditional food of their countries of origin, and within a few short years one could easily find a Turkish doner shop, Italian pizzeria, Greek taverna, Spanish tapa restaurant, Portuguese cervejaria or Yugoslavian restaurant serving food from all over Europe, first in the big cities, but eventually even in the smallest of villages.
(Incidentally, nowadays you are more likely to find an ethnic restaurant than a typical “German Gasthaus” (German Tavern) in most places 😦
Securely wedged in my memory are the Cevapcici of that time. Up ’til then, we did not know “Burgers”. We had either buletten or meatloaf, typically served hot with mashed potatoes or pasta and mushroom sauce, or served cold with bread and mustard.
So when Cevapcici came along, they were pretty special and exotic to our palette and view.
Spiced with plenty of garlic, oregano and cumin among other seasonings, they tasted and looked very different to anything made with ground lamb (or any other ground meat) we’d seen up to then.
They were usually served with rice and salad or with some type of flatbread and salad, often accompanied by a yogurt sauce and raw onion rings.
Again, at the time, this was pretty new and exotic for most of us 🙂
So when I got this ground lamb yesterday, I was looking forward to preparing and eating, for the first time in many years, this wonderful dish.
I am happy I did because I enjoyed every morsel of it (and so did Bella) 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !   (And full of memories) 🙂
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Pls note:
Replace the lamb with beef, or pork or a mixture of both if you prefer.
Cevapcici can be grilled, sauteed, baked (roast) or fried. However, do NOT overcook them or you are left with a dry stick of coal-like substance 😦
See the pic of the close-up of the meat. Well done but VERY juicy and tender 🙂
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Click here for  Potato Salad Recipe   (Add sliced, seeded cucumbers if desired)
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Ćevapi (Cevapcici)

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Ćevapi (Cevapcici)

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Ćevapi (Cevapcici)

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Ćevapi (Cevapcici)

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Advertisements

National Flags Made Of Food

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As part of a promotion for the Sydney International Food Festival, the advertising agency WHYBIN\TBWA designed 18 national flags using foods each country is commonly associated with and that would also match the colors of the flag. 

Wow !
Such a simple, logic idea that has taken so long for somebody to visualize and promote. I stumbled across this by chance and was amazed that it did not get more attention world-wide, considering that everybody and their dog is now into creative food presentation and expressing themself through food. I hope that I can inspire to follow suit and that I can get many submissions from my readers with their own creation of a country flag of their choice. If there are more than one of the same country, we will vote which one to publish. If you’d like to submit, please use a white background and a similar rectangular plate as in the originals.

Life is Good !  Let’s do this ! 🙂

Should your your picture appear here, you will of course get the proper credits !

Below find the originals pictures and on the bottom of the page the appropriate credits.
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Thailand -  sweet chilli sauce, shredded coconut and blue swimmer crab

Thailand –
sweet chilli sauce, shredded coconut and blue swimmer crab

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South Korea -  kimbap and sauces

South Korea –
kimbap and sauces

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Vietnam -  rambutan, lychee and starfruit

Vietnam –
rambutan, lychee and starfruit

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United States -  hot dogs, ketchup and mustard

United States –
hot dogs, ketchup and mustard

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United Kingdom -  scone, cream and jams

United Kingdom –
scone, cream and jams

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Turkey -  Turkish Delight

Turkey –
Turkish Delight

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Switzerland -  charcuteries and swiss cheese

Switzerland –
charcuteries and swiss cheese

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Spain -  chorizo and rice

Spain –
chorizo and rice

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Japan -  tuna and rice

Japan –
tuna and rice

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Lebanon -  tomatoes, pita bread and parsley

Lebanon –
tomatoes, pita bread and parsley

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Indonesia -  spicy curries and rice

Indonesia –
spicy curries and rice

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India -  curry chicken, rice, cheera thoran and papadum wafer

India –
curry chicken, rice, cheera thoran and papadum wafer

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Greece -  olives and feta cheese

Greece –
olives and feta cheese

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France -  blue cheese, brie cheese and grapes

France –
blue cheese, brie cheese and grapes

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China -  dragon fruit and star fruit

China –
dragon fruit and star fruit

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Brazil -  banana leaf, limes, pineapple and passion fruit

Brazil –
banana leaf, limes, pineapple and passion fruit

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Australia -  meat pie and sauce

Australia –
meat pie and sauce

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Credits
Client: Sydney International Food Festival
Advertising Agency: WHYBIN\TBWA, Sydney, Australia
Executive Creative Director: Garry Horner
Creative Director: Matt Kemsley
Art Director: Miles Jeffreys
Copywriter: Tammy Keegan
Photographer: Natalie Boog
Retoucher: Nick Mueller
Food Stylist: Trish Heagerty
via   twistedsifter.com
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Spiders From Mars

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Just  a light dinner tonight with one of my favorite ingredients – Octopus.
In the seventies I spent a lot of time in the  Mediterranean  and some of my  fondest memories take me back to  Turkey,  Spain  and  Greece and their great seafood.. Almost all memories I possess of that time are connected to food. Parties, dates, travel, good times and bad times, all somehow  lead to (mostly) great meals. Most involved seafood of one way or another. While there were too many outstanding meals to count, the ones I remember the most were the many octopus dishes I had, and of those, the ones I had in  Mykonos. To this day I can picture exactly in my head walking along the very small area in town, right on the water, where the fishermen had hung up their freshly caught little monsters on racks in the fresh air. We used to pick the ones which appealed to us the most, took a chair at one of the tiny restaurants right there on the other side of the walk way and just pointed the waiter to our catch, which he then took to the cook who added nothing more than salt, garlic,  olive oil  and lemon juice and grilled it to perfection. Memories……….
I am fond of octopus of any size and any preparation, so today on my way home from work when I saw some nice baby octopus at my neighborhood Asian store, there was only one option for dinner tonight : ” Baby Octopus Salad ” .
( Once I looked at the finished dish,   ” Spiders From Mars ”   just came to my mind and stuck there   🙂
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Click to hear  “Spiders From Mars
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Real Food, Real Opinions &  ”  REAL MUSIC  ”
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When it comes to baby octopus, folk’s have different opinions and preferences. Some people eat the head, others remove it (me). Some grill or saute them straight, others simmer them first until tender (me), then continue to grill or saute. Some like them in complicated sauces, others just simply grilled or sauted (me). Baby octopus curry anyone? Good stuff   🙂  So if you love seafood but have not yet tried these little creatures, it is high time to get a bit adventurous and put them on the menu.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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