Tuesday, May 8

Restaurant Nolla

There's a new sheriff restaurant in town (it opened already in February but still new)....and best of all it's right around the corner of my house in Kruununhaka :)
If you haven't yet been to or heard of Restaurant Nolla, the restaurant with zero waste, I recommend you to stay tuned.
Restaurant Nolla is a restaurant serving local and organic products prepared with love and perfection. The concept is great as they thrive to have zero waste which I don't think many restaurants have achieved. I really love this concept and hope other restaurants will learn from the knowledge of these entrepreneurs and aim to do the same....and not only restaurants but even households.
So how is all this possible? These 3 musketeers have a compost machine that turns all (almost) their waste to soil in just one day, which they then give to the farmers who deliver their veggies. All the stuff delivered to them comes in reusable containers or boxes. Nothing should be used only once. They order the oils and vinegars in big bulks and have even contacted other restaurants in the area to co-join the delivery to save on transportation.  I mean yes, they say zero waste but in all truth they will have a little bit but the amounts are split to none compared to the ridiculous amounts of waste that is produced by a restaurant in general.

The concept truly is something I lift my hat to...and so should you.

You can even make a visit the compost room which is right next to the dining area, which they will proudly present to you.

Well enough talk about waste. Even if its a good concept we don't want to put too much emphasis on that. You must be more curious on how the food was...right?

Restaurant Nolla (meaning zero btw.) have a changing menu consisting of either 3 or 5 courses (45/59€ excl. drinks) put together by three talented boys. These guys did not just wake up one day to start a restaurant. They have all worked in some of our finest restaurants in Helsinki. Carlos Henriques from Portugal @ Olo, Chez Dominique, Luca Balac from Serbia @ Olo, A21, Emo, Hoshito, Kuurna and last but not least Albert French Sunyer from Spain @ Chez Dominique, Olo and  Grön.

We ordered the full 5 course menu.
To begin was a sugar and salt cured Pike with a very rich 50%cream, refreshing apple and a turnip escabeche sliced thinly on the top.
This was a really good start and already I was hungry for more.

Next up was a crispy waffle topped with mushrooms and a kind of pork lard similar to Iberico speck called Mangulica (a pork from Serbia)

After the delicious waffle was an even better dish. A deer tartar with beet roots, a beetroot sabayonne and grilled red currants, giving an amazing smokiness to the dish. I definitely think this was the best dish throughout the whole evening.
Tender meat, acidity and smokiness....just perfect...and something I had never tried before. It just ticks every box of deliciousness.

As a main course was a beautiful Burbot tail. I'm used to eating burbot mainly in a soup so I think it's nice to see this fish get a bit more attention. The flesh is really tender and a bit firm. Almost similar to cod. The fish was served with potatoes, meadowsweet and a really succulent butter sauce.

The dessert was really surprising. It was made with celeriac which normally doesn't belong to the favourites of root veg. I have however, been getting some amazing and surprising dishes made from this root and have definitely started to like it. Like in this dessert it was really the star of the dish. If you weren't told what you were eating I'm sure you wouldn't even have guessed the key ingredient. The dessert had cake and ice-cream made from celeriac and it was just wonderful. the taste was almost a nutty caramell-like flavour.

Last but not least we also had he cheese which unfortunately I don't remember more details about (may have been due to the few glasses of wine).

I definitely recommend you to book a table or just pop by for a small snack.

This restaurant will also be one of the few restaurants taking part in the best festival ever
Taste of Helsinki in the middle of June.

P.S. I'm sorry for the bad quality pics...it was really dark and I struggled with the lighting...I guess a higher ISO would have helped.

Tuesday, April 24

Doggy Treats

If there is something I love more or as much as travelling and food it's definitely dogs. I'm one of those people who says hello to dogs on the streets even if I don't greet the owner. I even clap my hands ridiculously sometimes when I see a dog :D Unfortunately I don't have a dog of my own but I am sure that one day I will fulfil that dream <3
Lucky for me though I have a friend who let's me dog sit for his pooch once in a while and she is always welcome at my doggy spa. The first time I met her it didn't take long for her to take one look at me and I knew my heart would be her's forever.

Today is Finnish dogs day and I couldn't go a day more without posting these pics of my scruffy little friend as she has got to be my favourite model ever....however not the easiest to photograph in bad lighting as she wouldn't sit still or at least not where I wanted her to :D

Not long ago was I dog sitting Lilli (a mix breed between a Yorkshire terrier and a dachshund which to me makes her look like Ynk or Sorry-oo the dog in the Moomins) and wanted to welcome her to and my home with freshly baked treats. I had wanted to make doggy biscuits already for a long time but it would make no sense to make them if I didn't have the approval of a real pup.
I had seen some amazing pics on pinterest and instagram of which one of my faves has to be the one on twiggstudios account from where I chose the first recipe from and changed a bit the second one. I also googled what ingredients are suitable to give a dog as of course I couldn't just bake any kind of cookies.
Pumpkin, cheese, apple (not the seeds), liver, meats, peanut butter, carrots, eggs, cooked chicken, yoghurt, salmon, green beans and oatmeal are just among the few recommended ingredients.
I chose to go with pumpkin and cheese in one of the treats and apple and liver in the other and I assure you they went down a treat.
The biscuits didn't quite turn out as pretty as I had wished but Lilli didn't mind.
She would already have emptied the plate infront of her before I even had taken the first pic. After our photoshoot I even caught her stealing some of the goods :D bless her.
After I hid the cookie jar she'd be wandering around sniffing every corner to find any leftover crumbs.

I even ate a few myself and I can tell you they were actually quite tasty.

Cheddar and Butternut treats
1/4 cup of pumpkin puree (use canned or roast some yourself like I did)
1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
1/2 cup of plain flour

Mix the ingredients together in a bowl. If the mixture is too dry just add a bit more pumpkin puree. Roll into balls and place onto a baking sheet and bake at 180°C for 8-10 mins

Liver and apple treats

1cup of rice flour
1/2 cup shaved apple
1/2 cup warm water
1/8 cup of chopped cooked liver (I can't exactly remember the amount of the liver but add it like you were adding chocolate chips to a chocolate chip cookie....keep in mind though chocolate is not for dogs)

1 egg for brushing

Cook the liver on a pan until almost cooked and chop into tiny pieces.
Mix all the ingredients except the egg and knead. Add a bit of water if the mixture is too dry. Roll into a round bar and slice into small disks about 1/2 cm to 1cm thick. I tried rolling my mixture flat with a rolling pin so I could use a cookie cutter but it just didn't work. Next time I will try to make the mixture a bit more dough like maybe by adding some egg to the mix or adding a puree of some sort.
Brush the cookies with the egg.
Bake the treats in 180°C until crispy. My treats ended up being really small and therefore they baked really fast. I even ended up burning a trayful :(
I wasn't too happy of the look of these but the taste is all the pooches really care about :)

Waiting patiently

It's taking too long...let me dream about COOKIES

Play time

Can I have more please?

Time for some belly rubs


Monday, April 23

Asparagus and cured egg yolk

I recently tried something new (for me atleast)...curing some eggyolks. According to a magazine article in Sweden EVERYBODY is talking about these eggs😆🥚🍳I also saw an amazing picture on Eva Kosmas Flores instagram and blog account adventuresincooking.com which was such an inspiration to me (Please check it out it's beautiful💕) . 
How Could I not try these golden pucks for Easter as it's the festivity of eggs :D. 
I made these before easter and had a chance to try them before I escaped for a holiday to Mexico. They were super easy to make and I was surprised on how much the texture resembled bottarga (a dried fish roe typical in Sardegna which I really love to grate onto pastas).

I already posted a pic of these cured eggs on my instagram account before easter but I didn't have time to write more about them here on my blog until now. 
The taste is amazing and really brings out the umami of the egg. The great thing about these is that you can make them ahead and keep them either in the fridge for a few weeks or even freeze them and just use them whenever needed like I did.

The day before my trip I had a really simple dish of asparagus, yellow beets, peashoots with these vibrant eggs which I just grated on top and also sliced some thin slices of to add more texture.

All you need:
+ any additional spice or flavour of choice

How to make:

50% mix of salt and sugar. 
I used 250g salt and 250g sugar for 6 eggyolks. 
Cover the egg yolks with this mixture and let them rest covered in the fridge for 4-7days. 
I kept them for 5 days....just 'cause a friend of mine said that's the best according to him👍 after this clean the egg yolks carefully from salt and dry in the oven for 2hrs in 80degrees celcius. 
After this they are full of umami and can be grated onto pasta, asparagus or anything you feel suitable. 
They will keep in the fridge for 2-4weeks. But can even be frozen. I also added some truffle on some.

This was just divine in all it's simplicity and look how pretty the egg yolks look when sliced <3

This is something I will keep as staple in my freezer. Something to always have at hand when needed.