Monday, January 22, 2007

Quotation from Abraham Lincoln

“If you want to test a man’s character give him power”.

Abraham Lincoln

Turkish Half-Round Pastries

Making the Dough
Originally uploaded by sustenation.

Half-Round Pastry is called “peynirli pogaca “ in Turkey. “Pogaca” is pronounced like “po-ah-cha”.


5+ 3/4 cups flour
1 dessertspoonful fresh yeast
½ cup lukewarm water
125 gr. margarine or butter (melted)
90 gr. corn oil
1+1/6 cups milk
1 cup yogurt
10 gr. baking powder
2 eggs
1 dessert spoon salt (2 teaspoons)

1 egg white
1,5 cups white cheese crumbled with a fork
½ bunch fresh parsley

2 egg yolks
1 dessert spoon corn oil
2 tablespoons black cumin or sesame seeds


Put the fresh yeast into a small bowl. Stir to dissolve the yeast completely in ½ cup lukewarm water.

Put flour into a large bowl. Sprinkle salt and baking powder over flour. Make a pool in the centre.

Pour the yeast liquid, milk, yogurt, melted butter or margarine, ½ cup corn oil into the pool. Add 2 eggs. Mix the ingredients to form a dough. Place the dough on a working surface. If the dough is wet and sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. If the dough is very firm, add 1 teaspoon of milk at a time. Knead well until making a smooth dough.

When the dough is smooth, and earlobe-soft return it to the bowl, cover it with a damp cloth or wrap the dough with plastic wrap, let it rest at room temperature for one hour.

Mix egg white, cheese and parsley in a bowl.

Divide the dough into balls, take each ball, flatten each into disc form (approximately 3 inches), take each piece seperately, put 1 dessert spoon of cheese & parsley mixture just below the centre of each disc and spread out and down, leave a slight border at the bottom and sides. Fold top of pastry over filling to form half-round pastries. Press the edges with your fingers or the tines of a fork.
Carefully transfer the halfrounds onto a greased baking tray.

In a small bowl, beat egg yolks and 1 dessert spoon of corn oil together and brush over the surface of each half-round. Sprinkle black cumin or sesame seeds over them.

Bake halfmoons in a preheated oven until the crust is lightly browned.

Serve with a cup of tea or coffee.

Have a good appetite!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Quotation from Confucius

"If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day.

If you teach a man how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime".


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

What is a dessert spoon measure?

In Turkey, you will find three basic spoon measures: the teaspoon, the dessert spoon, and the tablespoon. A measuring teaspoon holds 5 ml; a dessert spoon holds twice as much as a teaspoon (10 ml); and a tablespoon holds three times as much.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Penne With Tomatoes, Parsley and Mint


250 gr. penne
2,5 liters of water
25 gr. salt (1+1/4 tablespoons)
5 medium sized tomatoes
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic (smashed)
4 tablespoons fresh parsley (chopped)
2 tablespoons fresh mint (chopped)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon sugar if necessary
1/4 cup Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese (grated)


Bring a pot of water to a boil. When the water is boiling, add salt(1+1/4 tablespoons). Then add the penne and cook according to package instructions. Usually 8-10 minutes, I cooked for 10 minutes in order to achieve the right texture. Stir for 2 or 3 times in order to avoid the penne sticking together. Drain the pasta and reserve ½ cup of pasta water.

The tomato sauce should be prepared while you are boiling the penne.

Peel the tomatoes. If you want to peel them easily, put the tomatoes into boiling water and count to ten. Then put them quickly into cold water, don’t leave the tomatoes in the cold water more than one minute, quickly peel off their skin with your fingers or with a knife. Chopped the tomatoes and put them into a strainer and press down with a spoon and remove the seeds. Use a food mill to puree the tomatoes.

Heat a medium sized sauteing pan over medium-low heat. Heat the extra virgin olive in the sauteing pan.

When the oil is hot, add the garlic, and saute over medium heat until the garlic becomes slightly golden.

Add the strained tomatoes. Stir occasionally, continue cooking until most of the liquid has been absorbed. If the sauce becomes too thick, add a little of the pasta water to thin out the sauce (I usually don't need). Add a pinch of salt, freshly ground black pepper, red-pepper flakes to taste. Taste the tomato sauce, if you think that the sauce is a bit acidic, you should add a pinch of sugar.

In the last 30 seconds of cooking, add chopped mint and parsley.

Add the penne to the tomato sauce. Stir to coat all the pasta with the tomato sauce. Remove the skillet from the heat and serve immediately.

Preheat the plates. Just before serving, add some freshly grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese on pasta (not too much).

Have a good appetite!

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Quotation from Confucius

Los Angeles
Originally uploaded by it is what it is....

"Don't complain about the snow on your neighbor's roof when your own doorstep is unclean".


Friday, January 12, 2007

Six Ways to Make People Like You

Thank you for caring!
Originally uploaded by carf.

“Rule 1: Become genuinely interested in other people.

Rule 2: Smile.

Rule 3: Remember that a person’s name is to him or her
the sweetest and most important sound…

Rule 4: Be a good listener.
Encourage others to talk about themselves.

Rule 5: Talk in terms of the other person’s interests.

Rule 6: Make the other person feel important and do it sincerely”.

By Dale Carnegie

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Nine Possibilities!

Trio of Red Stars
Originally uploaded by lanimilbus.

"What you think,
What you want to say,
What you thought you said,
What you said,
What they wanted to hear,
What they heard,
What they wanted to learn,
What they thought they learned,
What they learned..

may all be different!
So, there are nine possibilities for being mis-understood".

by Sylviane Herpin

Chicken Balls


½ cup milk
1 cup corn oil
1 egg
3 fresh scallions (thinly sliced)
1/2 bunch fresh parsley (minced)
3 tablespoons grated parmesan
1 skinless, boneless chicken breast (2 breast halves)
3 tablespoons fine bread crumbs
1 cup bread crumbs (3- 4 bread slices, do not use stale)
1 teaspoon tyme
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Bake fresh bread slices in a 300 degrees F / 150 degrees C / Gas mark 2 oven for aproximately 10 minutes, turning halfway through. Remove from oven and let it cool.

Tear the bread slices into smaller pieces. Use a food processor to turn the pieces of bread into bread crumbs. Continue to grind until a coarse texture.
The chicken breast halves should be cut into 1-inch cubes before it is placed into the food processor. Grind the chunks in a food processor until coarsely grounded.
Combine grounded chicken breasts, grated parmesan, 1 cup bread crumbs, milk, minced scallions and parsley in a medium sized bowl and knead well. Sprinkle salt, thyme and black pepper and continue to knead. Cover with cling film and place in a fridge to set for 1 hour.

1 hour later, take it out of the fridge, knead well until well mixed. Shape the mixture into small balls and flatten each into a circle about 2 inches in diameter. Dip the chicken balls in the whisked egg first and then in the breadcrumbs. Be careful to ensure that the the entire chicken ball is completely covered with the breadcrumbs.

Heat the corn oil in the frying pan. If the oil is not hot enough, the meatballs will absorb too much oil and become greasy. If the oil is too hot, the surface of meatballs will burn from the direct heat of the oil.

Add the chicken balls in small batches and fry them until cooked through. Fry both sides of chicken balls. Repeat with the remaining chicken balls, returning oil to the same level between batches.

Remove the fried chicken balls with a slotted spoon, drain them on a paper towel. Once the excess oil has drained off the chickenballs, place them on a warmed serving platter.

Have a good appetite!