A rainy day

 My day off, and the weather was really against me. How do they say? – it was raining cats and dogs? Something like this. The fact is that I love rain and storms, thunders and all the mess connected with heavy rain. Why was I complaining?  I just turned my back to the garden and went to the kitchen instead. The result of my morning work were four jars of cherries in almond syrup. 
Guess who was my supervisor?

Even if it was raining outside, I’ve maneged to have a short break on the balcony (my open air knitting room). I’ve cast on the first sock for my swap partner. It’s a secret, so enjoy a pic of the fucsia and one of the scented pelargionium I use against mosquitos – waiting a bat family to move to the bat house we have arranged for those voracious mosquito eaters.


Chess cake 2

 Ok, here we are: ready to assemble the chess cake.
Cut the cakes in two and create a sweet tower while alternating the coloured rings with whatever cream you’ll use – I ended up with a plain chantilly.

 You will obtain quite a big cake with an optical surprise inside.

Ta-daah. That’s all. Enjoy yourself and have fun playing with colours. Do you have a favourite team? Bake a flag! Play horizontal – why not?

Skully brithday cake

Here we are for another birthday. Matija has turned 12 and 12 were ment to be the skulls flying around the big one. I have to admit that they turned out more like creeepy medusas, but I was trying to beat my record of baking-in-a-hurry… and this was the result.
Eating the cake was far more delightful. It was a three layer sponge cake with strawberries and whipped cream. Mmhhh.

How to enter a new week a day later

Let’s start the day with something sweet and a cup of tea. Not the caffelatte I’m used to drink when running from here to there, with so much work to do and far from having pairs of spare helping hands. Today they will complete the wooden contruction of our balcony, the kids are going back to school in Austria, so I’ll see them next Friday afternoon. Next Friday, hmmm, the royal wedding day in UK and… sorry for you Willi and Kate, my son Matija’s birthday. He will be 12 and I have to plan a real nice birthday cake for him.


I don’t mean to suggest how to prepare and serve the best Dampfnudeln. There is a wide german world out there that will really tell you how to do it. But “Dampfnudeln” – like Buchteln and the Dalken – are really my favourites.
The Dampfnudel are “a piece of cake” to prepare. trust me.
All you need is a really good flour  (500 gr), fresh yeats (40 grams), half a liter of milk, 100 grams of sugar , 100 grams of butter at room temperature, and … time.
It’s the perfect pastry a knitting mom will serve for supper – while the dough is rising, you knit.
So – let’s start:

Put the  flour in a bowl. Find a central place where you’ll put the yeats, half the sugar and a quarter of the milk, lightly warmed. Mix a little bit, cover (first with some flour, then with a towel) and go knitting. Or crocheting. It works too. After half an hour or so add another quater of milk and half the butter. Another quick mix and you are ready for another knitting session. Now you are here.

It’s time you drop knitting for a while and part the dough into 10 or 12 small, tennis-like balls.
Let the yeats  work for another 20  minutes. You may cast on a sock in the meantime.

Now take an iron or heavy bottomed pan. Put in the rest of your butter, the sugar  and the milk.  Put into this  milky nest your  dough, cover and let it simmer – strickly covered – for about 25 minutes. A very nice smell of caramelised sugar will take you away from knitting. The Dampfnudeln are ready, plae as you see them, but you have to serve them on the resverse side, where they will form a nice, brown crust. Enjoy them with a vanilla sauce, a vanilla puding, or just like they  came from the pan.