15/07/16

Nettle pancakes with wild strawberry and rose petals jam - Crepes all'ortica con confettura di fragoline di bosco e petali di rosa - Palačinke od kopriva sa slatkim od šumskih jagodica i ružinih latica


We always had in our garde-manger some medicinal herb my mother used to harvest in the meadow or in the bushes at the edge of the forest. I don’t remember we have ever used infusion bags to prepare a chamomile tea or other herbal teas, like lime or rose hip tea. My mother used to cook various dishes with first young spring herbs and she still does it, she knows very well when to collect different herbs and wild plants and how to dry them and preserve them in the best way. Our family loves the nature and every time we went somewhere for a picnic, we returned home with paper bags full of plants, fruits and flowers. If you picnic in the wild nature, you need to be well equipped, we never went picnicking without the pruning shears or  the knife,  or without the basket and paper bags. At that time plastic bags were not so common as they are today. Think about it, there was not all that dirt around and our land was not so polluted. Sometimes we got the baskets as present from my uncle, he used to do basketwork at home using the elastic willow branches he gathered from the trees that were growing between different lands and properties. Other times some neighbor brought us nice baskets as present. In all these years we have gathered a small collection of baskets. Once upon a time there were many people able to create these simple woody wonders...

11/07/16

Pistachio cake with apricots - Dolce al pistacchio con albicocche - Kolač od pistacija s marelicama

Sometimes I feel blocked inside and I can't find the words to express myself. It take days, or even weeks before the right moment arrives and I decide to fill the blank paper in front of me. I would need another me, more strong and daring to tell all those feelings that are captured inside of me. Instead, I continue taking pictures, baking, inventing recipes and experimenting...trying to imagine in advance new and even bizzare combinations of flavours and perfumes. The beauty of creativity gives me so much good vibes and even if I dissapear from the world for some time I'm usually back with new interesting experience. This life is so fast and I have already spent my best years in this world. This life sometime offers happiness, you only need to discover it. It happens each day. Happiness simply happens! Go ahead and search for it in any possible way and in every moment.
Sometime I miss my old memories, I miss people and events that made me as I am today. My birthplace is faraway from where I live now and every time I go back home I feel some kind of unrest, because eventually I will have to leave again and go back where I now belong. I have two homes, I have two families, all is duplex in my life. Although I like both places and I feel at home in both countries, I always miss something. That strange sense of not belonging to no place is my faithful fellow since many years. All I have left behind in my homeland is no more familiar to me, all I have in my new country is still unknown to me.
It's like discovering new flavours, but if you don't taste them, you will never know how good and inspiring they are.
Today I have some unwritten recipes and some new pictures and all those things can't be put aside for long time. But in last days I had an urgent idea to be transformed into this cake and some old recipes have to wait patiently another perfect moment to be discovered.


27/06/16

Pita bread, the story about trees and wheat - Pane pitta, la storia di alberi e di grano - Pita, priča o drveću i žitu

Long time ago, when I was a child, I went with my family to a journey. We have traveled from the northern Croatian cost, through the nearest mountainous hinterland up to the biggest and most important city in Croatia - Zagreb, but we have traveled ahead through the beautiful countryside where my grandparents lived in a quiet village so similar to thousends of small villages scattered tidily in the flat and rich Croatian countryside. It was so, so long time ago, when hours didn't ran so fast and there were time for everything. Life was simple and easy, people were never late and knew how to enjoyed the life!
So we stopped for a visit to my grandparents only for few days before we went away and continued our journey to Belgrade, the capital city of what once has been my homeland - beautiful, united and proud ex-homeland. Years ago this country tragically disappeared...but this is another long and very complicated story to tell.
Our journey was long, but nothing forced us to arrive to our destination too quickly...and we offten stopped for a break. In those days the high-way was not so fast and crowded, it was a bit larger and straight then the ordinary roads and we have traveled slowly and relaxed.
We gradually entered into the region of Slavonia and we traveled in the shade of big, awesome oak trees. This was the majestic Spačva forestSuddenly we stopped at this lovely motel surrounded by the barrel-shaped bungalows and the image of those small round huts with sloping roofs remained fixed in my memory. The forest is still there, full of those ancient trees hiding stories of yesteryear!
If you speak about hardwood in my country, you don't have to mention its name, it always comes to the oak wood! Oak wood for enormous wine barrels and small brandy kegs. Oak wood for parquet and furniture. All that need to be lasting and strong was build from the oak wood...in the past and nowadays.
Few months ago I remembered again this journey we did together long time ago, it happened that I've discovered twelve-dots.com  and their beautiful and so essential design. And when my new cuttingboard arrived it was natural to write few words about majestic Croatian woods and oak trees and to bake some sort of bread. Oak trees and golden wheat are the essence of the vast region of Slavonia. Art and crafts are coming back to their old origins offering the beauty to the world!