Bloodtesting the horses

Every six months our horses have to be tested for the Anemia-virus, see the movie.

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Meanness is the devils ladle

Margarine, halvamel, spreads out of a ketchup bottle to fry meat in , hideous. Rather use less fat in your overall diet than to cut for example butter. Baked meat and roasts in other fat than butter, it deprives you first the smell, which is already more than half the fun, and then the taste. There’s nothing like real butter. To bake cakes and cookies you could use butter of about 60% fat, which is a cheaper variety, but I think even that tastes less.

Recipe for shortbread. *

Use the following:

4 parts flour
3 parts butter
2 parts of sugar
large teaspoon salt
large teaspoon baking powder (or use self raising flour)

Cut the butter into small pieces and mix with the sifted flour and sugar into a cohesive ball. Let rest for half an hour in a cold place.
Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Make a roll of 3 cm diameter and cut off thin slices off. You can also rotate balls and then flatten. Line a baking tray with baking paper and put the slices or balls on.
Put the pan middle or high in the oven and bake 25 minutes at 160 degrees. Verify that they do not burn.

* This is a basic recipe

This recipe is great base for all kinds of biscuits for example with cocoa, coconut and slivered almonds and a base for cakes and that are filled with almond paste. More on that later.

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A winterday with the horses

We made a short movie about the horse life here in winter.

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Horse riding in the snow

Anja came to visit us. She went riding with Jan in the snow. It was beautiful outside.

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Feeding the horses

Feeding the horses

We had quite a lot of snow yesterday. That means the horses can’t find grass themselves. So we have to feed them. The shepherd gives them hay every day. We give them some extra corn for extra energy in these cold days. We found the herd in a small valley.

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Fresh snow and a blue sky

Winter in Romania can be grey. Days with clouds and few light. But it can also be beautifully white with a bright blue sky. Yesterday was such a day.

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Wintry stews

We butchered a bull and a pig.
The weather circumstances were perfect for his kind of work, a few degrees above zero during the day and below zero during the night. Now most of the pig disappeared into the freezer. From the rest we made sausages, ham and bacon.
About the bull: it is a misunderstanding that most of the meat can be used to make steaks. No, most of the meat is suitable for making stews, soup, minced meat and the bones can be used to make a delicious broth. Then we talk about Slow Cooking. A new name for an old-fashioned phenomenon: taking time for food to become tasty and tender. All the time the pan is on the stove on the smallest simmer. I prefer to put the pan on the woodstove with which we heat the dining-room. You just have to stir every now and then and taste.

This is the Hungarian name for what we call Gulash.
In Hungary Gulyas is a soup.
We used meat from the bull and then it is called Marhaporkölt.
You can use all kinds of meat that is suitable for stews. Use 250 gram p.p (0,55 lb.)
Use the same weight of onions as meat. Cut the onions very fine. Use a large stewpan, melt some butter and add the onions. When you make a real large amount of porkölt, the onions won’t become golden. That doesn’t matter. When they are soft enough, add sweet and hot paprika-powder and stir well. You need 1 teaspoon sweet paprika per 250 gr (0,55 lb.) of meat and 1 teaspoon of hot paprika per 500 gr (1,1 lb.) of meat. This is an average amount of paprika. Taste it and adjust to your own flavor and then add the meat that is cut in pieces of 2,5 to 3 cm.
IMPORTANT 1: Add salt and peper to the meat before you put the meat in the pan.
IMPORTANT 2: Never ever fry the meat when you make a stew. You find this instruction in almost every recipe for a stew, but don’t. The meat should become tender and absorb all flavors. By frying the meat you prefend it from becoming tender and tasty.
So, put the meat with the onions and stir until the meat looks grey. Add a can of good tomatoes. These tomatoes have seen much more sun than those we can buy and come from the greenhouses. Let it stew on the slowest simmer and stir every now and then. Add some water when it becomes to dry. The longer on the stove, the better. You can add some garlic if you like. Eat it with potatoes, rice or mashed potatoes. Or eat it the next day, then it tasts even better.

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It is cold in January! I love my coat!

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After the Christmas diner

Well, we survived Christmas dinner and New Year ‘s eve. It is always hard work, eating the huge amounts of food during Christmas time. No matter how good and tasteful it is. In Romania many people fast in December before Christmas and many Dutch people eat simple dishes ones Christmas is over.
For those who want to serve a simple, light but tasteful dish which is easy to make, a recipe for Szekely Gulyás, to be pronounced as ‘Saykay Gooyaas’. It is a Hungarian dish from Siebenburgen, which is situated in Transylvania.

• 450 gram sauerkraut
• 600 gram minced meat, half porch, half beef
• 100 gram butter
• 2 big onions
• 2 teaspoons sweet paprika-powder
• 2 teaspoons hot paprika-powder
• 1 dl cream en 1,5 dl sour cream, mixed together
• salt and pepper
• some milk and white crumbled bread to prepare the minced meat
• garlic to join the onions is optional
• 300 gram cooked rice

Chop the onions and sauté them (with the garlic) until they become translucent and coloured. Mix the minced meat with salt and pepper, the hot paprika-powder, the milk and breadcrumbs until it is solid. Divide it in smaller parts and make small meatballs. Add the meatballs to the fried onions and stir frequently. The meatballs shouldn’t be fried but braised.
In the meanwhile, taste the sauerkraut. If it is to sour, rinse it a short while with cold water. Cook it for ten minutes with a little white wine or water. If it is solid, tear it apart and mix it with the sweet paprika-powder and the cooked rice. When the meatballs are solid and have a gray colour, add the sauerkraut and rice with the onions and meatballs and mix it. Put it in a baking dish and spread the sour cream and cream mixture on top of it all. Put in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes on 180 – 200 ℃ until the sour cream get’s a nice colour.

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Every day the shepherd of the village gathers all cows, strolls with them through the hills and returns with the herd at the end of the afternoon. As you can see here.

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