Category Archives: Lifestyle

Vienna in January: what to do in winter

Temperatures might drop well below zero, but there is still a lot to do in Vienna. The most important thing when going out is to dress up warmly, -not forgetting gloves and a hat.

With the Danube being frozen over long stretches, as seen above, it was a good opportunity for Viennese

to make sport out of it. Some people skated, while others rode and played with their children on the river ‘ice jam’.

The beautiful blue skies added to the beauty of the scenery.

Keeping warm..

After such outdoor activities one can keep warm by grabbing a cupbof coffee from at the Imperial Butterfly House (schmetterlinhaus.at).  For those whose are not coffee lovers, a warm cup of tea can do the trick. To learn more click here. Afternoons are never as comfortable as when one has something sweet to go with a good drink. Let’s see what I can find in some of Vienna’s Cafès.

Enjoy your week!

Festive Mood

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It was a wet Christmas Day today, and there was no snow in Vienna. All this was compensated by floods of whites, silver and golden Christmas lights all over town. The traditional red and green lights were almost non-existent this year.

We took some photographs on our trip around the town centre.

Below is Hotel Imperial.

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Temperatures were as low as  minus 6 degrees celsius although it felt warmer than that. Low temps did not discouraged us from taking a glimpse of what was happening out there. There wasn’t much activity though. Most families were indoors. We are all thankful for a time as this.

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Above: Around the ring

On this festive day, I tried a special duck casserole dish from Duck, bacon and onion casserole It did wonders to complete the festive atmosphere!

I hope you enjoyed your Christmas Day, doing various  activities, incuding being thankful, kind and loving.

Christmas Ideas

Russian Blinis: My first attempt!

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Recently, we learned how to prepare Russian Blinis and it was a lot of fun! This is a simple recipe that dates back to 1892 in the Russian history of food. It is popularly known as ‘four – three – two – one’ recipe  because of the ingredients involved. Although blinis were traditionally baked long ago, nowadays they are mostly fried.

You will need: 4 eggs, 3 Tbs (Any other oil will do), 2 glasses milk, 1 glass flour (use the same size glass as the one for milk). – hence the name!

For seasoning – salt and sugar. For stuffing you will need ground beef, onions, black pepper and garlic. Another choice of stuffing can be cottage cheese, jam or Nutella. This is good when you are making dessert.

Brown onion and garlic in a pan. Add meat and fry until golden brown. Season with salt and pepper.

For batter: Blend or mix the 4, 3, 2, 1 ingredients well. The batter will be runny. Heat a nonsticky pan that has been greased with oil. When there is a hint of smoke from the pan, indicating it is very hot, reduce heat to low and scoop the watery dough using a spatula, and pour gentle inside. As the other hand is pouring, the other one is rotating the pan so that the contents fill the whole base. Avoid pouring too much to make one blini. About 4 to 5 Tbs of dough is enough. When it has browned to your liking, flip the blini and do the other side. Turning it too early can deform the blini!

Wrap cooked stuffing inside your Blinis. You may drizzle with fresh herbs like dill or parsley.

Enjoy and have a good weekend.

 

 

Simple Weekend Meal

Vegetarian means easy, fast and cooking: It can also be healthy!

It started when my darling daughter said she no longer prescribed to eating meat, either red or white considering how she liked grilled spare ribs and chicken. She used to call every type of meat ‘chicken’ including fish.

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It’s more  than 5 years now since she became vegetarian! I know how serious she is with this choice, now. Seeing that it can also be healthy, I help her in her journey by researching about how best a vegetarian  can eat without missing out on essential nutrients, especially proteins.

Funny enough, hubby has akso of late declared that he is now semi-vegetarian. He eats less meat; although we always make fun of this state ent, to say, ‘how less is less, and against what does kne measure their consumption level of meat? May be research is necessary and we shall come back with some better scientific explanation later. 🤓

My son on the other hand, does not mind eating everything in moderation, which I think is the best policy about eating style. His only exception is pork, and it also developed as he grew older and had learned that if not well-cooked it can infect one with larva of a worm called Trichinella, leading trichinosis or even death. Yes, interesting too!

Anyway, these days I look out for vegetarian, fruitarian and pesco-vegetarian diet and menu as much as possible. Please feel free to give feedback on any ideas and suggestions.

For example this weekend, I felt that my usual salad of lettuce, cucumber and tomatoes in Thousand Salad Dressing (fat free) was boring everybody at home. Even this type of salad below was getting too much for the whole family.

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We all needed something more exciting and different. Even changing the platter can make all the difference to those you are serving, I realised – they were all smiles!

For our weekend salad I mixed previously boiled and seasoned white beans and all raw veggies including spinach, apple, green, red and yellow paprika, a bit of pepperoni, onion and carrots. All these are slightly glazed in half teaspoon of virgin olive oil. Two minutes is enough where you contionuosly turn the vegetables in a pan on top of a stove. This helps to soften the veggies, especially carrots. Otherwise heat carrots only and leave the rest totally raw. Sprinkle lemon juice over the salad and toss.

To go with the salad I discovered that sweet potatoes which are available here, taste better when baked or toasted with a splash of olive oil. Boiling makes them watery and less tasty. So I cut the into cubes or dice them before preparation.  Don’t over do them, whatever you choose to do. The fact that they are charred a bit gives the feel that they are directly roasted over the fire. The smoky aroma and taste is delicious. I love it!

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The rest of the family, and yours truly of course, could not do without meat. So I chose something that would fry fast – during weekend, you want to spend as much time as possible with family instead if closing yourself in yht kitchen making Gulash or those time-consuming  meals. Beef tenderloin roast seemed to be the best bait:

I used a non-sticky pan, brushed it with some sun-flower oil and seasoned. When th oil was hot enough, I placed the well-seasoned thin slices of beeft tenderloin in the pan and did 3-4 minutes on both sides. I used medium heat; we like well-done. (You can do the meat the way you like it best. Remember not to overdo it either, otherwise you lose most of the juices and flavour.

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You can enjoy this dish with some barbecue or chill sauce.

These days I am enjoying Chai  Moringa tea. The tea is not very tasty but it is good for detoxification ang keep you feeling fresh.

Have a great weekend and all the best for the coming week.