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Nine Rabbits Celebrates Bulgarian Life in the Kitchen

Nine Rabbits Celebrates Bulgarian Life in the Kitchen


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This novel and informal cookbook is a must-read

Intimate and conversational, this is a must-read!

Nine Rabbits is the 2008 novel by celebrated Bulgarian author Virginia Zaharieva, published in North America for the first time by Black Balloon Publishing this month. Throughout the narrative, a restless woman’s fiery enthusiasm for her family’s culinary traditions defines her from childhood into adulthood as she strives for a life less ordinary.

Some of the most significant and delightful elements of Zaharieva’s Nine Rabbits are the recipes that punctuate the novel’s prose. Dishes including “Nettle Purée” and “Oatmeal Breakfast” introduce rustic Bulgarian fare to North American readers, while recipes like “Sandwich for 11 a.m. Hunger Pangs” and “Potato Dumplings with Fruit” are characters in themselves, playing the role of counterpoint to balance the action and emotion in the narrative. The directions, which lack precise measurements, are intimate, intuitive, and conversational.

NETTLE PURÉE

Finely slice two pounds of nettles and cook them in one and a half cups of water for five minutes on high and then five minutes on low.

Brown three tablespoons of flour in a pan until it becomes golden.

Add a packet of butter to the flour and gradually combine it with the nettles.

Stir the mixture until it becomes a full, thick porridge.

For a more attractive presentation, the purée can be served with a fried egg on top and sprinkled with feta cheese, mint, and crushed walnuts.

OATMEAL BREAKFAST

Mix a handful of finely ground oatmeal with a little water and half a carton of yogurt.

Add raw sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, and cashews.

Add a spoonful of ground flaxseeds and a spoonful of ground sesame seeds.

Add sliced fruit to taste and several dried plums and raisins.

This is an energy bomb that guarantees long-lasting carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids — important for building cells.


9 Creative Carrot Soup Recipes

Subscribe and get Turkey Schmurkey, my plant-based holiday eCookbook, for FREE!

Like this? Here's More:

Velvety smooth, a hint of sweet, and vibrantly orange, carrot soup is a favorite for everyday dinners and special occasions alike. Like Easter! Plus, with all that beta carotene – the yellowish-orange pigment found in carrots – the health benefits (like being able to see the eggs you’re hunting for) go without saying.

But before I get into it, can I share something? We have a bit of a carrot-related rift going in in our house, and I need to get it off my chest.

See, my guy and I have an ongoing argument. He insists that wild bunnies don’t actually munch on whole carrots. That Bugs Bunny simply perpetuated a myth that I, naively, have bought into.

I believe. So I continue to put out carrots whenever we spot a bunny friend in the area.

Sometimes, yeah. The carrots sit for days, untouched, shriveling in the sun. But this year, we have two rabbit residents in our front yard, and almost every day, our daughter puts on her bunny ears and hops a carrot out to the lawn. (If you’re wondering why the showmanship, it’s so that she’s one of them – and doesn’t scare them away. Which cracks me up, but so far, it works!) Anyway, this year, the carrots are definitely disappearing! In your face, doubting guy!

Except that we have never actually seen a bunny munching on the carrots. And a squirrel was standing on one the other day.

Never mind. I don’t want to know.

Anyway, in honor of Easter and bunnies and, yes honey, the carrots that they eat and love, I thought I’d round up some carrot soup recipes from a few of my favorite talented bloggers across the web.

Among these carrot soup recipes – Thai red curry, one that doesn’t even touch the stovetop, another with a Southwest spin – you’re bound to find one that’s everybunny’s fave.

1. Roasted Carrot Soup / Jessica in the Kitchen / Made entirely using only a sheet pan and a blender. No stovetop needed! So convenient.

2. Instant Pot Curried Carrot Red Lentil Soup / Kitchen Treaty / Curry flavors and Instant Pot ease make this one just about the easiest you might ever make (delicious too)!

3. Healing Carrot Soup with Turmeric & Ginger / Hello Glow / A vibrant, antioxidant-rich soup designed to have you feeling better in no time. Plus: It’s gorgeous!

4. Creamy Carrot Coconut Soup with Red Curry / Rachael Hartley Nutrition / This carrot soup is fully loaded. I love that! A hearty base zipped up with red curry paste then heaped with quinoa, avocado, and almonds before serving. Brilliant.

5. Creamy Carrot-Orange Soup / Neighborfood / Zippy orange and smoky chipotles are unexpected additions to carrot soup, yet they make SUCH perfect sense here.

6. 5-Ingredient Roasted Carrot Ginger Soup / Kitchen Treaty / Because sometimes creativity can be found in simplicity, right? This one tastes surprisingly complex for so few ingredients. The key? Caramelized roasted carrot goodness.

7. Chilled Carrot Soup with Scape-Pistachio Pesto / Healthy Delicious / Cumin, carrots, and coconut milk pureed and chilled, then topped with a vibrant garlic scape and pistachio pesto. This one would be so easy to make ahead and have on hand for company.

8. Southwest Carrot and Black Bean Soup / Melanie Makes / A velvety roasted carrot base heaped with black beans, fried onions, and cilantro. Super hearty! vegetarians can simply sub vegetable broth for the chicken broth.

9. Carrot & Leek Soup with Frizzled Brussels Sprouts / The View from Great Island / Toasted Indian spices on the front end and a glorious tangle of browned Brussels sprouts at the finish. Simple yet special.


Bridget is a very private person when it comes to sharing snaps of her husband and family on social media. Basia Zamorska, one of Bridget&rsquos stylists, is more forthright and let PEOPLE in on a few details.

&ldquoAndrew proposed to Bridget in April [2015] on a romantic getaway in Puerto Rico,&rdquo she told the outlet, noting that he did so with a vintage estate engagement ring from Fred Leighton. &ldquoThe diamond is set east-west, exactly what the bride has always wanted.&rdquo


Tuesday - CHSE Celebrates…Students & Alumni

Hangin’ with Haley – Career Crossroads

Take a break from the books. Haley will be chatting with CHSE alumnae who took unique and untraditional paths to reach their career goals. You do not want to miss this one! Listen in as they describe how they used their CHSE degree to create their own route to success and have the opportunity to ask questions and get advice!

Shelly Mullenix, senior associate athletic director for health and wellness, LSU Athletics (CHSE degree MSW)
Rhea Perkins, program and operations manager, Georgia Tech School of Electrical and Computer Engineering (CHSE degree PhD Educational Leadership & Research)
Ashley Wilking, Nike Master Trainer and a full-time fitness instructor at Rumble Boxing (CHSE degree BS Human Resource Education)

5:30 – 6:30 p.m.

Finals Fuel

FREE FOOD! The CHSE College Council and CHSE Ambassadors are providing snacks for students to take a break and fuel up. Where and when can you find us?

11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. 225 Peabody Hall

2:30 - 4:30 p.m. Cypress Hall Courtyard (facing Enchanted Forest)


6 of 22

Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg

&ldquoIdgie and Ruth had set a place for him at a table. He sat down to a plate of fried chicken, black-eyed peas, turnip greens, fried green tomatoes, cornbread, and iced tea.&rdquo

In Fannie Flagg&rsquos novel Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe, the titular restaurant is the go-to spot in Whistle Stop, Alabama, for satisfying meals&mdashand heartwarming company too.


Wild Strawberry & Rose Wandering Rabbits

NEW! Limited Edition Easter Collection. Our delectable rabbits are filled with our house crafted caramel, touched with prized Bulgarian rose water and fragaria vesca, commonly known as fraise des bois strawberries. We seek these fine, delicate, wild strawberries for their unique and delicate parfum. These beautiful bunnies are captured within an encasement of our proprietary 62% cacao dark chocolate.

More collections are available in our Chicago Chocolate Temple Boutique for local pickup. Please call 773-435-0094 for more information.

(9) Wandering Rabbits: Wild strawberry + Bulgarian rose + 62% cacao dark chocolate

Our proprietary chocolate is crafted specifically to support the ingredients we infuse with it to achieve a taste experience matching the storytelling. Our 72% cacao dark chocolate is one of our most intense and has a deep roasted vegetation, dried fruit and a touch of tart berry notes. Our 45% cacao deep milk chocolate is a roasted cacao with a dense caramel profile that is achieved through the caramelization of roller dried, whole milk during the coaching process.

At the heart of our mission is creating luxury chocolate collections with responsibility to the environment that sustains our earth. We have been sourcing Fair Trade or Rainforest Alliance certified cacao for over 15 years. We are powered by 100% renewable energy and abide by a green purchasing of procuring only post consumer recycled board and biodegradable materials. Our kitchen exclusively uses Organic cream and sugar.

For this spring’s collection I looked to an unlikely pairing: the goddess Ostara and my sons. On the surface they have little in common, but importantly there is one thing that they do. Ostara is credited with bringing the spring and my children, like most kids, have the necessary kind of innocent optimism that affirms their belief that light and good are always around the next corner. Our seasonal collections are an expression of this. They revel in the coming of spring a time to revive our spirits, celebrate the renewal of the Earth and the importance of finding balance and wellness inside ourselves. I wanted this collection to appeal to those with a traveled palate, but equally to my boys' love of the classics. They love our toadstool shaped sugar cookie and white chocolate bombas, and what child wouldn’t love our creamy peanut butter version of filled chocolate chips. Within the pattern on the packaging, my son's drawings of a baby bunny and fawn appear, making this offering from our Chocolate Temple a true family affair. After a challenging year on our Earth, these are the kinds of gifts that Ostara brings raining in chocolate. In this burgeoning new season, I wish for your family’s joy, that your blessings will be abundant and that you are reminded of how life-affirming the dawn is.

Peace, Love, Light and Chocolate,

Living in Paris, Katrina learned the Parisian ritual of purchasing chocolate and pastry daily. We use exotic and ephemeral ingredients for all our products.

Keep this box of haut-chocolat in a cool, dry place until serving.

Consume by listed expiration date, 14 days from shipment.

Contains: Milk, Soy, Gluten, Hazelnuts, Pistachios, Coconut

Processed on equipment that also processes Milk, Soy, Wheat, Eggs, Peanuts and Tree Nuts.


If you're looking to make restaurant-worthy crème brûlée at home and want to achieve a caramelized sugar top that delivers the perfect satisfying "crack!" when you tap your spoon on it, you'll need a kitchen torch. But don't think that this tool is a one-and-done addition to your culinary arsenal. Once you have one, you'll realize how many other dishes you can use it for. Think: Toasting meringue on baked Alaska, fruit tarts, and pies searing pepper and tomato skins broiling grapefruit browning bread crumb toppings on casseroles melting cheese atop French onion soup or charring meats after you've cooked them sous vide.

Kitchen torches get their fire from butane, and some of our picks come with gas included while others require you to purchase it separately. All of them are safe to use at home, though, and you'll find that they feature a range of built-in safety features such as locks and child guards. Most of their flames are adjustable and continuous, can extend up to six inches, and hit somewhere between 2,000 and 2,500 degrees F, which is definitely hot enough for any culinary use.

A few guidelines for getting the most out of your kitchen torch: First, remember to use a sweeping motion, which ensures that the flame goes slowly back and forth across the surface of the food. To avoid burning, don't hold it too long over one place. And when you have finished using the torch, store it out of reach of children and in an upright position to stop the butane from leaking.


The Life-Changing Magic of XO Sauce

Red Hot Kitchen has had quite the journey in the last few weeks! Since its February release, I’ve been fortunate to have participated in radio shows and podcasts, spoken at bookstore events and lectures, and been featured on a number of food and design sites. The IRL and virtual book tour continues. I have upcoming events at Omnivore Books and Book Passage the first weekend in April, and an event at the Museum of Chinese in America in late April. Not to mention the usual schedule of cooking classes! (Come say hi at an event or class!)

Since the book launch, I’ve noticed that all nine of the hot sauces featured in Red Hot Kitchen have their own fans, but one chili sauce in particular has drawn a group of new, very excited converts: XO sauce. There were many people who hadn’t really heard of XO sauce before. After all, it’s not THE gateway Asian hot sauce that everyone knows and loves (Sriracha), nor one of the increasingly popular condiments that’s getting more and more attention in the U.S. (gochujang, sambal oelek, Sichuan chili oil). Often, even if someone had heard of XO sauce before, or tried it in a Chinese restaurant, they didn’t really know what ingredients are in it.

But hopefully word is getting out about this underrated chili paste! Since the launch, Salon TV did a segment with me on making XO sauce, Edible Brooklyn showcased my Vegan XO Sauce, and PureWow featured my Stir-Fried Rice Cakes with XO Sauce. I also fielded many questions about it on WNYC’s All of It with Alison, Heritage Radio Network’s Eat Your Words, my launch event at Books are Magic (also recorded for TASTE’s podcast), the Asian Chili Sauce Lecture and Tasting at Brooklyn Brainery, and Masters of Social Gastronomy: Burnin’ Down the Mouth. A few people even went home from my Books are Magic event and immediately made regular and vegan versions of the XO sauce (the highest compliment ever!)

Now, I’m probably not supposed to choose a favorite of the nine hot sauces (it’s like choosing a favorite from your nine children, right. ) but I will go on the record right now and say that XO sauce would be my desert island hot sauce. Why? Many people think of advancing their hot sauce knowledge through training their lungs and esophagi to adapt to increasingly spicier sauces. I prefer to skip the capsaicin one-upmanship. Instead, the more spicy food I eat, the more I find myself craving more complex and deeper flavors to go with the heat. There are many instances when Sriracha, sambal oelek, or sweet chili sauce would be the perfect addition to a dish. But when you want a hot sauce that has insanely rich umami flavors while also packing heat, XO sauce is the one to reach for.

So what exactly is XO sauce? Well, it’s the youngest hot sauce of the nine featured in Red Hot Kitchen, developed in Hong Kong in the late 80s and 90s by restaurant chefs. “XO” is Hong Kong slang for extra-old brandy and gives off the idea of something luxurious. Pretty much every restaurant or XO sauce maker in Hong Kong has their own recipe, but most of them include dried scallops, dried shrimp, and Jinhua ham. Dried scallops are prized in Cantonese cooking and are used in many soups and braises, especially at banquet dinners. Jinhua ham is also a delicacy, with a flavor similar to jamon serrano or prosciutto (you can’t find it in the US, so I use smoked bacon as a substitute). Dried shrimp isn’t as pricy as the previous two, but it’s still prized for the briny flavor. Small (6 to 8 ounce) jars of XO sauce in Hong Kong can run you between $25 and $70 USD.

(Vegans/Vegetarians: I got you covered. My vegan XO sauce made with some key umami-rich ingredients was a hit at recent tastings!)

Of course, cooking at home is always better quality- and cost-wise, and you can make an quart-size jar of XO sauce at home at a fraction of the price. (I use small scallops or shredded scallops, which are very affordable, instead of the crazy pricey large whole ones that people mainly give for wedding gifts.) Even though it takes a bit longer to put together (about an hour), the absolute best part about making XO sauce is that once you have it, you will need very few other ingredients to enjoy a fabulous meal. It’s so flavor-packed that you really need just a few fresh ingredients to mix with the XO sauce.

Now, what do you do with it? SO MANY THINGS. In Red Hot Kitchen, I have recipes for noodles, chicken stir-fries, steamed fish, veggies, a flatbread pizza, and more. But honestly, you can use it for anything your umami-loving heart desires. Examples:

Throw it on plain steamed rice

Dress up cashew chicken, beef with broccoli, sesame shrimp, or another favorite stir-fry

Stuff it in dumplings or spring rolls

Add it to your late-night ramen

Stir it with into a turkey or vegetable chile

Roast your favorite vegetable with it

What you can do with XO sauce is limited only by your imagination, and I know Appetite for China readers don’t have limited imaginations!

You can get the full recipes from Red Hot Kitchen for XO sauce via Salon (XO sauce recipe is after the Rice Cakes recipe), and for Vegan XO Sauce via Edible Brooklyn. Now that I’ve hopefully piqued your curiosity, what are some dishes you would love to try XO sauce with?


Crispy Hazelnut Wandering Rabbits

NEW! Limited Edition Easter Collection. Our fluffle of rabbits allow you to experience the pleasures of traipsing through a garden filled with the sweet bounties of the Earth. Hazelnuts of only the finest Italian Piemonte sort – born of the geographically protected Corylus tree in the Langhe, I.G.P. Piemonte hazelnuts, with lightly crunchy crepes and Valencia orange confit of carrot are encased in 45% cacao deep milk chocolate. These beautiful bunnies make a sweet treat for you or a loved one.

(9) Wandering Rabbits: I.G.P. Piemonte hazelnuts + 45% cacao deep milk chocolate + Valencia orange candied carrot

Our proprietary chocolate is crafted specifically to support the ingredients we infuse with it to achieve a taste experience matching the storytelling. Our 72% cacao dark chocolate is one of our most intense and has a deep roasted vegetation, dried fruit and a touch of tart berry notes. Our 45% cacao deep milk chocolate is a roasted cacao with a dense caramel profile that is achieved through the caramelization of roller dried, whole milk during the coaching process.

At the heart of our mission is creating luxury chocolate collections with responsibility to the environment that sustains our earth. We have been sourcing Fair Trade or Rainforest Alliance certified cacao for over 15 years. We are powered by 100% renewable energy and abide by a green purchasing of procuring only post consumer recycled board and biodegradable materials. Our kitchen exclusively uses Organic cream and sugar.

For this spring’s collection I looked to an unlikely pairing: the goddess Ostara and my sons. On the surface they have little in common, but importantly there is one thing that they do. Ostara is credited with bringing the spring and my children, like most kids, have the necessary kind of innocent optimism that affirms their belief that light and good are always around the next corner. Our seasonal collections are an expression of this. They revel in the coming of spring a time to revive our spirits, celebrate the renewal of the Earth and the importance of finding balance and wellness inside ourselves. I wanted this collection to appeal to those with a traveled palate, but equally to my boys' love of the classics. They love our toadstool shaped sugar cookie and white chocolate bombas, and what child wouldn’t love our creamy peanut butter version of filled chocolate chips. Within the pattern on the packaging, my son's drawings of a baby bunny and fawn appear, making this offering from our Chocolate Temple a true family affair. After a challenging year on our Earth, these are the kinds of gifts that Ostara brings raining in chocolate. In this burgeoning new season, I wish for your family’s joy, that your blessings will be abundant and that you are reminded of how life-affirming the dawn is.

Peace, Love, Light and Chocolate,

Living in Paris, Katrina learned the Parisian ritual of purchasing chocolate and pastry daily. We use exotic and ephemeral ingredients for all our products.

This collection is FRESH and PERISHABLE. Keep this box of haut-chocolat refrigerated until two hours before serving. Consume by listed expiration date, 4 months from shipment.

Contains: Milk, Wheat, Hazelnuts

Processed on equipment that also processes Milk, Soy, Wheat, Eggs, Peanuts and Tree Nuts.


Classic Christmas Cookies: Bulgarian Maslenki Cookie

Editor’s Note: Kathy Harrison, preparedness maven, is also a fantastic cook! Every year, her very large family gets together, and what she calls the 𠇌ookie wars’ break out! This year, she’s got an international surprise in store for them, and she shares the recipe and story with us.

My husband has a big family. There are nine brothers and sisters and 22 nieces and nephews. We have long since stopped counting the cousins, second cousins and assorted hangers-on that joined the family as boyfriends or girlfriends and refused to leave when the relationship dissolved. It’s that kind of warm, inclusive bunch.

Because of the size, we began a family tradition of having one large Christmas party each December to bring everybody together. There are years when the number tops 80, so a private home is out of the question. We rent a space and have the meal catered, which takes the stress off of everybody. Well, all but the cookie stress. You see, we don’t order dessert. Instead, each family brings a big box of cookies. We eat some with our after dinner coffee. The rest are boxed up and taken home.

As you can imagine, there is a certain, shall we say, competition for the very best cookie. Nobody is bringing anything pedestrian. You won’t find a plain oatmeal or chocolate chip cookies anywhere. We cooks all search out unusual and delicious recipes, hoping to wow the compe..I mean our sister-in-laws.

I feel like I have a bit of a leg up on the rest of the family cookie bakers. You see, we raise pigs. And along with bacon and ham, chops and roasts, I get a huge supply of fat. It takes some time and it’s a messy process, but each year I render a couple of gallons of gorgeous, creamy, white lard.

If you are worried about the fat, read some of Sally Fallon’s books about the place of good fats in our diets. I’m not claiming you should be drinking it as a beverage, but I do believe that lard has a place in a healthy diet. I use it in pie crusts, biscuits and in cookies. Lard makes a wonderful dough with a superior flavor and workability.

This year, I plan to use lard to knock the socks off at the Harrison Family Christmas with a Bulgarian Maslenki Cookie. My new daughter-in-law is from the Ukraine and I have been researching Northern European recipes and found this one. I made a batch and it made a Maslenki believer out of me.

This recipe makes a lovely dough that is easy to shape and, unlike cookies made with butter, it doesn’t spread when baked. This is a rolled dough. I cut mine out with a two-inch round cutter. I did find that the cookies got softer with some keeping time so I plan to make the party batch a few days prior as I like them better that way.

Bulgarian Maslenki Cookies

Ingredients
3 eggs (large ones)
¾ cup of sugar
1 cup of lard (Get organic lard. Please.)
4 cups white flour.
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoon vanilla

For topping: A good quality jam (a variety of different colored jams makes a lovely platter)

Beat your eggs really well and add the sugar a bit at a time. This will take a good five minutes with an electric mixer and a bit longer with a hand mixer. Melt the lard, then let it cool as it will cook the eggs if added when still very hot.

Add liquid lard to the egg/sugar mixture in a slow stream.

In a separate mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients, making sure that all the lumps are broken up. Add the dry ingredients to the egg/sugar/lard mixture to create a stiff dough.

Divide this dough into 3 balls. Refrigerate any you are not working on, especially if your kitchen is warm. Roll out dough into a sheet about ¼ inch thick. Cut out the dough circles.

In half those circles, use a small cutter (the top of a colored marker works well) to poke out a hole. (If you want really fancy shapes like Christmas trees, angels and stars, try these cookie sets!) You can re-roll the tiny circles with the next batch of dough. Place cookies on sheet, and bake at 375 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes and cool completely on a wire rack.

When the cookies are completely cool, spread the whole cookies with a layer of not-too-sweet jam and top with a cookie that has the hole cut out of it. This lets the jam peek through. You can sift some powdered sugar over the top if you like. Make sure the cookies are completely cool when you add the jam. Otherwise the jam will melt, the tops will slip off and you will have a dreadful mess. (I have never done such a silly thing. I just think I should warn you that could happen.) If you are pressed for time you can roll the dough out a bit thicker and just press a divot in the center with your thumb to hold the jam.

I find that this is a good place to use some of the unusual jams I make. Rose petal and elderberry are not as popular with my kids as plain raspberry jam, but I do love to make the fancy ones.

There are a lot of competitions I am destined to lose. I’ll never be rich. My house will never be anything but a big, shabby farmhouse and I’m still driving the same old car I was driving eight years ago. At the end of the day I know no one will ask where I got my dress or who my hairdresser is, unless, of course, the want to avoid said places.

But they may just say that, by golly, Kathy can make a great cookie. That works for me!


Watch the video: Life in Bulgaria: Easter (July 2022).


Comments:

  1. Cuilean

    What are the correct words ... Super different sentence

  2. Beiste

    Fascinatingly. I would also like to hear the opinion of experts on this matter.

  3. Rowin

    check it out, check it out.

  4. Glais

    It is interesting, while there is an analogue?

  5. Tygotaxe

    Thanks for the interesting retrospective!



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