July 13, 2016

‘Yvestown kookt’ book review & GIVEAWAY

Hey friends,

I wanted to introduce you to ‘Yvestown kookt’, a new Dutch book that I had an instant crush on. Not just because it’s pink (but hey, that might be one of the reasons), but also because the author, Yvonne Eijkenduijn, just has this way of making everything she touches so pure and light and beautiful. I will admit I’m a little jealous (but good jealous) of that (and also her beautiful white and pink home!!!).

yvestown kookt

The book is a bundle of Yvonne’s columns that are honest, from the heart and pure pleasure to read. The recipes are divided into seasons and they are everything I love about food: honest, simple meals with not too many recipes you would want to eat every day and spoil your friends and family with. Most of the dishes can be prepared in less than 30 minutes and that is something that this new mom appreciates very mucho as I rarely have more time for cooking these days.

It’s really hard to pick my favourite recipes from the book but I can tell you that so far my tummy has chosen the following: sweet potato and bean burger, Leksands knäcke pizza and BBQ soft fries with melted cheese (yummmmmmmm!). Screen Shot 2016-07-13 at 11.28.21

 HOW TO WIN YOUR COPY OF THE BOOK? 

Go to my Instagram page, and tag a friend you are going to cook for on the post. Your friend can send me a thank you card later.

YvesTown kookt
Written by: Yvonne Eijkenduijn
Price:  24,99 euro
Publisher: WPG Uitgevers

June 10, 2016

Fun & delish bread rolls and sandwiches with Président cheese

Ok, so admit it. Most of your bread rolls suck and are boring as hell. I know they are. I worked in an office long enough to see the oh-my-let-me-yawn sandwiches people bring to work and guys, let me tell you something, it can be so much better. And it won’t take you much more work neither, you will still have to go to the store, you will still have to make your sandwich in the morning (or evening before for the non morning peeps). Same effort, a big difference in your lunch break! I mean check out this goat cheese, blackberry, mint & walnut bread roll. Admit, it’s sooo much better than that ordinary sandwich you had today (if I’m wrong, good for you!!!).

president

If you’re not the most creative one in the kitchen, Président has created a website full of exciting sandwich and bread roll ideas called Broodje Plezier (the enjoyable bread roll). Think brie and nectarines or strawberries, or goat cheese with mango and popcorn, or camembert with red beet and spinach. Aren’t you drooling already? I am. Check it out and promise me you will ditch that ham & cheese sandwich next week at least for one day and you will try to spoil yourself a little bit with a big, delicious roll!  

broodjeplezier

June 3, 2016

GETTING REAL ABOUT PARENTHOOD, POOP AND LAUNDRY WHILE TESTING SAMSUNG ADDWASH MACHINE

Parenthood is never quite what we expected. I was ready for a lot of aspects of it as I have done my fair share of babysitting (fair share meaning babysitting has basically gotten me through university!) so I knew how to change diapers, make baby food or prepare a bottle. I knew that it involved a lot of sleepless nights (although I must say I WAY underestimated that) and I knew I would dedicate every moment of my day to this new little person and I was ready to do that. The reason I waited with having kids is because I’m way too ambitious and I want to do way too much for one lifetime. I decided that when I have a baby, I want to enjoy staying at home, changing poop diapers, having showers at 5 pm if at all instead of dying of jealousy looking at my instagram feed of people doing fabulous things I am not able to do (ok, I did manage to write another book but you will see that it took away the little sleep I had on my ageing face haha).

OBVIOUSLY I was not prepared for many other aspects of parenthood. Like breastfeeding, which did not turn out to be ‘boob calms baby down’ kind of situation but rather ‘baby can’t latch on and when baby learns he starts hating the boob and mom ends up being stuck at the pump for months as mom does not give up easily’ kind of a scenario. Anywhow, what I was also not prepared for was the freaking huge amount of laundry that I suddenly had to do. I KID YOU NOT. Nobody told me that laundry was gonna be my middle name. Nobody told me that when I finally did get the baby to sleep (oh yes, that’s another one I was not prepared for, a baby that does not like to sleep), I would spend the ‘free time’ on collecting laundry from EVERYWHERE, getting rid of poop stains, drying laundry, folding laundry, laundry laundry laundry.

addwash

If someone asked me if I wanted to try out a new washing machine a year ago, I would yawn and refused them very nicely. Laundry was not on my list of interests and I put very little attention to do except that it had to be done at some point. If you told me I would get overexcited reading words like 12 KG OF LAUNDRY, EXTRA DOOR TO ADD WASH ANYTIME, SUPERSPEED FUNCTION, BETTER STAIN PENETRATION…. I would seriously laugh in your face. Like, bitch please, laugh in your face. Well, when I got an email asking if I want to test a new Samsung AddWash machine, I was ready to admit I am not that same person anymore.

DEALING WITH STAINS

Let’s get real here. Baby diapers EXPLODE. Not literally, this is not a safety warning, but oh boy you will see your share of what I call poop volcanos and these are not fun to deal with especially when caked into clothing. And then there is food. Babies are dirty eaters and if you do Rapley method as we do, you will see food everywhere, baby clothing, your clothing, anything that has been in the vicinity of baby while he was eating.

Before AddWash, I spent lots of my time trying to pre-treat the stains before washing the clothes because hey, baby clothes are not cheap, but also because my sister had a baby on the way and I knew these clothes were gonna have a second life.

This is where AddWash has saved me SO MUCH time – the machine has this ecobubble technology that mixes air, water and detergent to create bubbles that penetrate clothes faster and helps you get rid of stains as well as wash at cooler temperatures (no shrinking baby clothes thank you very much). I stopped pre-treating stains pretty much 95% of the time. The only type of stains you might want to still pre-treat is the nasty yellow breastfeeding poop (you know what I’m talking about). For that I used Dr. Beckmann stain soap stick which I swear by. addwash ADDWASH FUNCTION: THE EXTRA DOOR TO ADD LAUNDRY

Okay, so we 3D print shizzle, clone shizzle so how did no one think of this before? I absolutely hate stopping the laundry cycle to add something I forgot. And there is always something, a dirty tshirt in the kitchen, peed on onesie in the bed, 5 baby washcloths in the bathroom (doesn’t my life sound just absolutely FABULOUS!). It took forever till it would let me open the door again and most of the time baby would cry or would need a new diaper and I would forget about the laundry all in all. I never ever want a life without the extra door in the washing machine THANK YOU!

12 KG OF CAPACITY 

Where do I find 12 kg of laundry? HAHA easy peasy, take one walk around my house. DONE. Less time doing laundry, more time to do something for me, like taking a shower. Or writing another book haha – priorities right? addwash SMART CONTROL 

Ok, so as much as the geek in me is excited about the SmartControl app on my phone that allows me to manage the laundry from any place in the house, do you know what the best part of this whole thing is? It lets me know when my laundry is done! I know, it sounds ridiculous but I have this horrible habit of doing laundry the whole day and then forgetting the last one, till the next day, or the day after… when that happens, I can just start the whole thing again because those clothes are everything but fresh. You know how many laundries I have forgotten in the last 3 weeks? NONE. NONE!

So yes, this is pretty much what my life is about now haha. But I love it. I really do. I would not change it for any other type of fabulous (the one without poop, and heaps of laundry and stuff).

May 2, 2016

#EMOJICOOKING WITH CAMPINA

Hey friends! Campina has created a super cute #emojicooking website to celebrate a new, improved recipe of their quark cheeses (plattekaas in Dutch). They asked me if I wanted to have some fun with it and create some simple recipes for you guys! Easy cooking is my middle name and even more now I’m combining being a full time mommy with freelance work so I was all game! I love the simplicity of the site and I kind of wish Fer was a little bigger so we could create some fun meals together and he could help me make them (yes yes, I’m hoping he will be a total foodie and I will have the cutest little sous chef soon.) But you go kids, play with the emojicooking app and make some yummy foods (or take my ideas here below – you won’t regret it).

emojicooking

AVOCADO & DILL BAGEL 

Needed for 1 bagel: 
2 tbsp Campina Halfvolle Verse Kaas (semi-skimmed quark cheese)
1 avocado
2 tsp fresh dill
Pinch of salt

Mix the quark cheese with salt and 1 tsp of dill. Cut the avocado in half, stone it and scoop out the flesh. Slice it.
Toast the bagel. Top the bagel halves with the quark, avocado slices and finish off with the other 1 tbs of fresh dill.

avocado bagel copy

SWEET POTATO & CRESS BAGEL

Needed for 1 bagel:
2 tbsp Campina Halfvolle Verse Kaas (semi-skimmed quark cheese)
1/2 sweet potato
2 tsp fresh cress
1 tsp olive oil
Pinch of salt

Mix the quark cheese with salt and 1 tsp of cress. Peel and slice the sweet potato and bake the slices on the olive oil in a hot pan till they are soft on the inside and crispy on the outside, about 5 minutes each side. Optionally, cut the slices into smaller pieces.
Toast the bagel. Top the bagel halves with the quark, sweet potato and finish off with 1 tbs of fresh cress.

sweet potato bagel

 BLUEBERRY JAR CHEESECAKES

Needed for 4 cheesecake jars:
500g Campina Halfvolle Verse Kaas (semi-skimmed quark cheese)
Sweetener (equivalent of 100g sugar)
10 high fiber cookies
6 tablespoons margarine
200 g blueberries

Preheat the oven to 130°C.
Crush the cookies with a food processor. Melt margarine in the microwave and mix with crushed cookies. Make a cookie layer in each of the jars.
In a bowl, mix quark with the sweetener. Divide the mixture between 4 jars. Place the jars in an ovenproof dish and pour a little bit of water at the bottom of the dish. Put in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes.
Let cool off, top with blueberries and enjoy!

blueberry cheesecake

 

April 24, 2016

NAKED CAKE SHENANIGANS WITH SMEG

I am not a super duper baker ok? I mean I can bake any healthy cake I imagine in my head but you know, I am not like your typical baker who can do beautifully & perfectly decorated cakes or cookies. I have been obsessed with naked cakes lately though (no worries, you won’t have to bake this cake with no clothes on – I mean you could of course, why not right? but that’s not what naked cake is – for those who are not in the known, it’s a cake where you leave layers exposed instead of fully covering them with fondant and/or cream). I think they look so fresh and rough but delicate at the same time. I’ve been planning on making one for a while but for no particular reason it didn’t work out (other than being busy with taking care of my baby full time while working on projects hehe).
I got this gorgeous SMEG stand mixer and my first thought was NAKEEEEED CAKE TIME! I made a sugar-free version except for the sprinkles of course but hey – YOLO! My second thought was – if I could be in love with a kitchen appliance then I would be in love with this one. I seriously can’t stop looking at it. But can you blame me??? It is a real showpiece of a stand mixer!

smeg stand mixer mint
And it’s not just the looks with this one. Let me tell you, this stand mixer can take some proper whipping! It has 10 speeds and a big 4.8-litre bowl which made it easy for me to make two cake batters in one go. I only used the whisk attachment for the cake but I already tried the dough one for a flatbread too and it’s just as wonderful. The mixer comes with 3 attachments but you can get extra ones such as a pasta roller and cutter, spaghetti cutter (hello lovers of Italian cuisine) or a meat grinder.

naked cake

NAKED CAKE WITH SPRINKLES

Needed:
300g baking margarine
8 tbsp of honey
8 large eggs
300g self-raising flour
400 ml (soy) whipping cream
2 tbsp sprinkles
pinch of salt
*19cm Round Cake Tin

naked cake

This is how you make it:
Preheat the oven to 160C. Divide egg yolks and egg whites and whip the egg whites with the pinch of salt till they are completely stiff. Melt the margarine in a small pan on a low heat and mix it with flour, egg yolks and honey. Add the whipped egg whites and gently mix it all together. Grease the baking tins with the baking spray and divide the batter into 2 cake tins. Bake in the center of the oven for approximately 30 minutes (the cake is ready when risen and an inserted skewer comes out clean). Let the cake cool off in the oven but put a wooden spoon between the oven and the oven door. This will help your cake to stay risen! If you’re oven is two small, make the 2 cakes separately.

Whip the cream until stiff and add sprinkles to it.

Once the cake cooled off completely – cut off the peaks (if your cake made peaks) so the cake is even. Cut both cakes in half lengthwise.

Fill a piping bag set with a large round piping tip with cream. Spread a small amount of cream on a cake stand. Place your first layer of cake on top and pipe the cream onto the layer. Add the second layer of cake and repeat the steps. Do the same with the third layer of cake. On the very top layer, spread the cream with a (palette) knife. Clean the knife and smooth the remaining cream around the sides of the cake. Sprinkle the whole cake with sprinkles! EAAAAT!!!!

Here a small video if you want to see the SMEG stand mixer in action:

April 9, 2016

Homemade baby food: Oatmeal with Prune & Apple + Avocado, Potato, Egg & Dill Puree

Hi friends! Sorry for being MIA on the blog lately but turns out that what I have heard the entire pregnancy: “being a mommy is a full time job” to which I usually said “yeah yeah of course, I know that” (but thought – naah I can do it all), oh well, it is true. Being a  mom is a full time job and especially the first 6 months when you’re a full time milking machine has been extremely demanding. Next to that I have been working on a new big project (:-o more soon!) so blogging was not my number one priority. However since little Fer turned 5,5 months, we started solid foods and I have been cooking for him every day since! So for those moms who look for some inspiration for homemade baby food, I will start sharing some of Fer’s favorite meals!

All ingredients I use for Fer’s food are organic and he only drinks water (except for milk of course).

fer_homemade baby food

OATMEAL WITH PRUNE & APPLE

Needed for one portion:
15 g oats
150 ml water
1 small apple
1-2 prunes

Ground the oats in a blender till they turn into fine powder.
Peel, core and grate the apples. Chop prunes into small pieces.

Put all ingredients in a small pan and bring the mixture to a slow boil. Simmer covered, mixing frequently, for about 10 minutes until apples are soft and oatmeal is cooked.

Cool off till it’s the right temperature. You can serve it warm or room temperature, little Fer likes it both ways. If your baby doesn’t like texture in his foods, you can mix it together in a blender until smooth.

DSC_0447-2

AVOCADO, POTATO, EGG & DILL PUREE 

Needed for one portion:
1 small potato
1/2 egg, hard boiled
1 small avocado
1 teaspoon of fresh, chopped dill

Steam the potato till they are cooked. Slice the avocado in half lengthwise, de-stone it and scoop the flesh into a blender. Add potato, egg and dill and blend until smooth mixture. Serve warm.

*** TIP: I usually steam more potatoes and make myself a salad from the remaining egg, an extra avocado, steamed potatoes + a dill, lemon salad dressing :)

DSC_0454-3

November 3, 2015

STOKKE ON THE GO: This new momma shares her favourite food hotspots

 

STS_0594I’ve been crusin’ with my Stokke Crusi stroller for a few weeks now and I’ve been the biggest fan of it since pretty much the first walk we took on day 9 of Fer’s life. It’s just so comfortable and so easy to maneuver, I can pretty much ride it with one hand! Even on the tougher roads here in the countryside. I was so happy when I was asked to participate in a new project from the brand called “Stokke On The Go”. The idea behind it is that influencers share their favorite hotspots related to mommy/kid time. As Fer is still tiny and we can’t do much other than eat together haha and yes, because momma is a foodie who is constantly hungry (now even more, thank you breastfeeding), I naturally wanted to share my favorite food hotspots with you. One is my all times favourite since forever and ever, and one I recently discovered and was immediately obsessed with.

LOMBARDIA

stokke on the go

stokke on the go
I’ve been coming to Lombardia pretty much since I moved to Belgium. If I lived in Antwerp, I would probably never start a food blog as I would eat there every day. I’m not even kidding you. I swear I would. Eating well is one of my secrets to living a happy life and I’ve been eating healthy ever since I remember but when I got pregnant and was suddenly responsible for a tiny human being, I was even more picky of the quality of the foods I was eating. That has not change since I gave birth – I am breastfeeding so consuming products of great quality is a must and there is just no better place to get my boost of vitamins and nutritious foods than Lombardia!
Little Fer is only a few weeks old so it’s not easy to go out and definitely not easy to eat out as I’m breastfeeding and Fer is one hungry munchkin (must be my genes). I don’t know whether it’s because I feel at home there or because the atmosphere in Lombardia is so relaxed or because the owner Alain just loves kids and welcomes the breastfeeding moms (and trust me not every restaurant is open to this!), our afternoon in Antwerp was one of my favorite get-away’s since I gave birth!

stokke on the go copy

My picks:
- Juice of the day (always amazingly delicious and because I like the element of surprise)
- Ginger love (so good when the days get colder and you need a boost)
- Mexican Vegan Burger (THE best guacamole, THE best falafel, THE best vegan burger in the world – that’s what I always eat + take one home for the next day)

Address: Lombardenvest 78, 2000 Antwerp

——————-

SISTER BEAN

stokke on the go2

Next to a gorgeous interior store Simple and organic ice cream shop Tromelhoeve, the reason to go for a walk to the Vismarkt in Mechelen is a new place called Sister Bean. Opened last June, it has already made my favorite breakfast/brunch/afternoon coffee spots list. In the weekend, I like to go there and spend a few hours chilling with other momma’s (I feel so lucky that many of my friends have given birth pretty much the same time as I did!) while munching on pancakes, homemade granola, homemade jams on a delicious bread and of course, amazing coffee (because beans hehe).

stokke on the go

My picks:
- Do the brunch in the weekend!
- Brownie (OMG it’s to die for and it’s sooo big)
- Coffee (even decaf is amazing)

Address: Vismarkt 26, 2800 Mechelen

September 29, 2015

Arrival of my baby boy (+ gluten-free banana brownie recipe)

This beautiful baby boy has finally joined our little family and has already changed my life forever!

baby fer

I love the quote from Winnie-the-Pooh that ““sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.” From the moment I saw the plus on my pregnancy test I have loved my baby more than I could have imagined but that moment, here below, was the moment where I felt my heart grew 100 times bigger to fit all the feelings I had when I saw and held my little man for the first time. So many emotions and so much fulfilment that suddenly came over me, like something was always missing and I just didn’t know it and now it was here and it was so overwhelming in the most beautiful way. I’m sure any momma who gave birth knows what I’m talking about hehe. I feel so blessed with this mini munchkin and I spend hours a day kissing his little cheeks, his tiny feet and just staring at him till my neck hurts – and trust me you have a lot of hours in a day when you barely get any sleep. All worth it though!

birth of Fer

If you’re a reader of this blog, you know I’ve had the pregnancy diabetes and had to be careful with every carb that I ate. I have been dreaming of brownies for the past 3 months so now we’re back home, I might be making up for the amount of chocolate I missed!! Oops! Good news for you, I’m sharing my recipe for a delicious and healthy banana brownie that you will be not able get enough of. It’s nice and soft and I just ate a whole tray of it.

GLUTEN-FREE & SUGAR-FREE BANANA BROWNIE 

Ingredients (for a small square tray – for a big tray double the ingredients)
2 overripe bananas
3 tbsp smooth organic peanut butter
1 egg
2 tbsp cocoa powder
100 g coconut flour
15 g stevia (equivalent of 150 g sugar)
100 g chocolate chips or chocolate pieces (I used stevia sweetened chocolate)

That’s how you make it:
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Mix all ingredients except for chocolate chips in a blender. Add chocolate chips. Grease the tray with a baking spray or line it with a baking paper. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes. Let cool off. If you’re feeling a little naughty you can melt some extra chocolate and cover the brownie with it.

brownie | princessmisia.com

September 10, 2015

Wholewheat pita halves with feta, figs & red onion

It’s fig time! Who is excited? ME ME ME! I luuuuv figs, they are so good in both sweet and savoury dishes and I just can’t get enough of them! I love to add them in my oatmeal in the morning, in my salad at lunch and to my pizza in the evening! I had a few figs at home and two wholewheat pitas left from yesterday’s dinner so I thought I’d combine them to make us a lovely lunch! I cut the pitas lengthways, crumbled some feta on top of them, added figs and served them with red onions and a honey yoghurt dressing. Simplicity at its best! Enjoy!

Pita pizzas with feta, figs & red onion | princessmisia.com

Needed for 2 persons:
2 wholewheat pitas
200 g feta (light version)
2 big ripe figs
2 red onions
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons Greek yoghurt
1 teaspoon honey

That’s how you make them:
Heat up the oven to 180C. Cut the pita breads open lengthways so that you have four very thin halves. Slice the figs. Crumble feta on the pita halves and arrange fig slices on top. Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes.

In the meantime, peel and slice the red onions. Bake the onions on a pan with olive oil till they are soft and start to turn golden.

Take the pita halves out of the oven and top them with the onions. In a small cup, mix yoghurt and honey and sprinkle it over the pitas.

HAPPY LUNCH!

September 4, 2015

Zucchini & sweet corn burgers

Last zucchinis are ready to be picked in the garden so it’s time for these beauties! The recipe comes from my book FOURPLAY (now available in Dutch and French) but I think everyone deserves to try these burgers before the summer ends, here is the recipe in English!

Zucchini and corn burgers | princessmisia.com
Needed for +- 6 burgers
2 zucchinis
1 sweet corn
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 eggs
100 g chickpeas
50 g spelt flour
Salt and pepper
Olive oil for baking

How to make them:
In a pan, boil water and put the sweet corn in it. Cook for about 5-8 minutes until tender. Let cool and cut kernels from the cob.

Grate the zucchinis. In a sieve or colander, drain zucchini, squeezing to remove excess liquid. Pat dry.
Put chickpeas in a food processor and blitz till they are fully mashed. In a small bowl, combine the zucchini, sweet corn kernels, chickpeas, onion and one egg. Season with salt and pepper and form patties from the mixture.

Put spelt flour on one plate and a beaten egg on another. Dredge the burgers first in the egg, then in the flour. Bake them on a pan with olive oil till they are golden brown.

Serve with on a wholewheat bun with salad, a slice of avocado, some sprouts and a scoop of homemade mayo.

Zucchini and corn burgers | princessmisia.com

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