A fantastic snack for a beer evening

© Qin Xie-Krieger

© Qin Xie-Krieger

When the weather is turning to be nicer and warmer, people might want to drink more beer…
Eh … OK, this does not really apply to the Germans. Most of my German friends love to drink beer at any kind of weather and at any time …;-)

So, let me try again …
When the weather is getting nicer and warmer, people might get even more desire for even more beer. ;-)

Germany is the beer-nation par excellence. This is well known. Until now I have never experienced another country where the beer is so popular and quasi declared as a national drink.

Just one question has fascinated me for quite a long time: How can the Germans just sit in the beer garden for one, two, or even four or five hours without taking any snacks with their beer? Continue reading

Grilled cottage bread with wild garlic butter

© Qin Xie-Krieger

© Qin Xie-Krieger

Spring has arrived! :-)
What is the first sign of the arrival of the most pleasant season of the year?
Of course, the lush green wild garlic bunches at the farmer market! ;-)

I immediately brought three bunches home. Two of them were processed for my heavenly tasting wild garlic pesto with purslane, which has already become my culinary ritual to welcome spring.

The third bunch ended up to become a delicious wild garlic butter on my favorite bread which was grilled till lovely crispy and golden brown.

Hmmmm … It tastes and smells like the sunshine in the spring… :-D

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Gluten-free carrot rice cupcakes with chai latte frosting

© Qin Xie-Krieger

© Qin Xie-Krieger

Are you still looking for a sweet recipe for the Easter holidays? Now I have a gluten-free yet tasty recipe for you. :-)

Carrot cakes or muffins are quite well known to everyone. But have you ever tried the ones made of rice flour? With a super delicious chai latte frosting on top?

The first time for me to get in touch with the Indian Marsala Chai was during my trip to India a few years back. At each crossing, on the adventurous country roads, on the crowded markets … everywhere in every city I could not miss the hawking: “Chai… Chai… Chai …”, shouted in a melodious and pleasant rhythm. The Chai boys were carrying a large pot and some aluminum cups with them, slowly walking barefoot through the crowd. Once someone gave a signal that he wanted to have a cup of Chai, the Chai boy poured the spicy tea zippily and elegantly into a cup and handed it to the thirsty customer.

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Pork belly with leeks and black beans

© Qin Xie-Krieger

© Qin Xie-Krieger

Are you feeling the same like me? While the spring has officially arrived in southern Germany, I surprisedly got in the mood for something really hearty, even fatty. It seems almost like I am having a panic at the end of the generous winter season which tolerates food with rich calories.

When I saw that great piece of shiny pork belly at the butcher, I could not restrain myself. In the end I had THE cure against my “winter panic”. In my head I saw the picture of slightly crusty fried thin slices of the pork belly: their rinds are shining beautifully in the frying oil, their irresistible roasting aroma is rising from the cast iron wok and spreading in the whole house, and then the intense scent of salty fermented Black beans … Gorgeously hearty, sinfully tasty! ;-) Continue reading

Kaki Persimmon Clafoutis with Hazelnuts

© Qin Xie-Krieger

© Qin Xie-Krieger

Some weeks ago it was the Chinese New Year. Although I was not able to celebrate the year of the goat/sheep with my family in China, I did follow some customs of Chinese tradition: clean the apartment completely before New Year’s eve, dress myself with something red on New Year’s day, put the fu (福, the character for happiness or luck) on the front door, organise a big Banquet to celebrate the new year and buy a lot of kaki persimmons and decorate the house with them. As my grandmother maintained this custom her lifelong, I also bought kilos of kaki persimmons on the market and placed them all over our apartment. Continue reading

Barbecued Potatoes and Carrots with Cumin and Rosemary

© Qin Xie-Krieger

© Qin Xie-Krieger

Cumin is an aromatic spice with a unique and distinctive flavor. I have already learned to appreciate its incredible taste during my childhood and youth in China.

Cumin is actually not a typical traditional chinese spice like sichuan pepper. For the majority of Chinese cumin has an exotic image. For this spice usually comes with a very popular dish from the (exotic) Uighur region of China: grilled lamb on skewers.

The Uighur cut their lamb into small and thin slices and marinate with a spice mixture of cumin, salt, chilli and oil. Then, the meat is put on wooden skewers and barbecued over the fire.

This seductive scent of flesh and cumin can be smelled from miles away and is really mouth watering. Hmm… Believe me, it is almost impossible (for me it has never worked out) to walk past such a barbecue stand without snatching one or more skewers of the mouth watering cumin lamb . ;-)

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Corn Mango Soup

 

© Qin Xie-Krieger

© Qin Xie-Krieger

A few days ago I had a conversation with a publishing house which has an interest in a book project with me. The publisher and the editor are very food-passionate people and showed great curiosity for everything about the culinary delight. I really enjoyed the conversation with these likeminded people a lot. :-D

We talked a lot about Chinese and Asian eating habits and cooking methods. But also about much more than these culinary topics. Much to my surprise, the theme of “Chinese dietetics” was completely unknown to them. So I suspect that perhaps you neither have heard about this and would like to know a little about this topic.

Especially in todays  time full of countless diet methods, dos and don’ts on our daily plates, a glimpse of this holistic nutrition might be helpful for all who feel quite lost in the jungle of this extreme diet society.

Simplified explained: We Chinese see a close connection between nutrition and medicine by considering all food as a kind of drug. Just like drugs, any kind of food can be healthy or unhealthy for our body depending on the life situation and well-being of the person. The conscious awareness of the selection and combination of different foods to promote health or prevent disease is called “maintenance of life”.

There are for example rules which goodies you should prefer eating and which you should rather avoid in the different seasons. For example, in winter you should consume more lamb and deer meat. When it is flu time you should cook and drink fresh ginger tea every day to prevent or alleviate the flu. Or in some specific life stages such as during pregnancy, crabs are a no-go for women…

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Golden Milletisotto

© Qin Xie-Krieger

© Qin Xie-Krieger

Some of my friends and family members are currently complaining quite often about the grey sky, the biting coldness which is eating through our bones and of course the unpleasant wind that cuts into our skin like a sharp knife …

I’m neither a fan of long and cold winters. I always try to tell myself: What you cannot change, you have to accept … blah blah … However, this doesn’t really comfort me …

So, what can you do against the “winter depression”?
There are many options:

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