All Posts By Florian Laudahn

Favourite image: Pear

Posted on 1 min read

Pear is a typical autumn fruit. Like the apple — incidentally the most popular fruit in Switzerland — it belongs to the pome fruit family.

The pear is a sweet fruit because it contains little acid. Popular varieties are Williams, Conférence and Gute Luise and Kaiser Alexander. The picture reminds of a beautiful autumn day and fruit trees in the country.

Photo via Flickr from user jon oropeza under CC BY-SA 2.0

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25 facts about rhubarb

Posted on 2 min read

It is rhubarb season! That’s why we have collected 25 interesting and maybe not so interesting facts about rhubarb for you here.

  1. Rhubarb means rheum rhabarbarum in Latin
  2. This means something like “foreign root
  3. Rhubarb comes from the Himalayas
  4. It is part of the knotweed family
  5. Buckwheat and sorrel also come from this family
  6. Only the stems can be used
  7. Rhubarb is often considered a fruit because of its use, however it is actually a vegetable
  8. In the USA, rhubarb has been legally considered a fruit since 1947
  9. The leaves are toxic due to the oxalic acid they contain
  10. Oxalic acid promotes rheumatism, gout and the development of kidney stones
  11. Oxalic acid corrodes the enamel of the teeth, so it is recommended to wait at least half an hour after eating rhubarb before brushing your teeth
  12. The best red-fleshed rhubarb is called “Elmsfeuer” or “St. Elmo’s Fire”
  13. Rhubarb has a digestive (or laxative) effect
  14. It is therefore well suited for a detox or purification cleanse
  15. The flower buds of rhubarb can be used as vegetables and prepared like broccoli
  16. Per 100g rhubarb has only 13 kcal
  17. It contains vitamins A, B1, B2 and C
  18. Rhubarb has a sour taste due to its citric acid and malic acid
  19. 4800 years ago rhubarb was used as a medicinal plant, but only the roots, not the stems
  20. Only in the 18th century it was discovered as food
  21. In 1937 the area under cultivation in Germany was 1700 hectares, but by 1993 it dropped  between 350 and 400 hectares
  22. Rhubarb grows up to 2 meters high
  23. May to June is when rhubarb flowers
  24. The climatic requirements are low, rhubarb just needs plenty of water
  25. Final harvest is the longest day of the year (June 21)

You can read more exciting facts about the carrot here.

Sources:

Picture from https://pixabay.com/

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Favourite image: Jerusalem artichoke

Posted on 1 min read

Did you know that Topinambur means Jerusalem Artichoke in German?

But the small tuber has very little to do with the city of Jerusalem. The name has developed etymologically from girasole (Italian for sunflower) in English as Jerusalem. Gardeners in the Vatican used the flower of Jerusalem artichoke to remind us of small sunflowers — hence the name.

Photo via Flickr from user F Delventhal under CC BY 2.0

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Kale with Quinoa

Posted on 1 min read

Want a healthy start to summer? This is the perfect dish, as kale is one of the healthiest vegetables out there! It provides your dish with an incredible amount of fresh vitamins.

Best of all, kale can survive the cold seasons and is therefore a simple, yet delicious vegetable. It works well in winter salads, but is also great when its cooked, like in our recipe here. You can usually find fresh kale at your local market, and when paired with protein-rich quinoa, the flavours of the kale are even better. The subtle Asian flavours give the dish a fresh kick. In addition, the pepperoncini gives the whole dish a light, pleasant spiciness. The addition of the crunchy pine nuts gives everything a slightly nutty taste. Follow these steps to make a perfect dish!

Quick to Prepare

Within 30 minutes, you can throw together this dish for four. With healthy ingredients, like kale and quinoa, you will be able to please everyone! It is perfect for vegans and vegetarians. To round out the dish for all the meat lovers out there, beef makes a great addition. Furthermore, quinoa is gluten-free and therefore well tolerated by everyone. The dish not only looks great, but is also quite appetising. You’ll have fun cooking this!

Here is another fresh and healthy salad: kohlrabi salad. If you want to know more about kale and other types of cabbage, you will find important information about nutrients and season in Switzerland here.

federkohl salat mit quinoa
Kale with Quinoa
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Servings Prep Time
4 people 30 minutes
federkohl salat mit quinoa
Kale with Quinoa
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Rating: 0
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4 people 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 30 minutes
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Instructions
  1. Rinse the quinoa in a fine sieve under cold running water to get rid of its bitter flavors. Drain well, and put it in a saucepan. Add the vegetable stock to the washed quinoa and cook. It is best to simmer for 10 minutes and then let it absorb for 5 minutes. Stir well, so the quinoa does not settle to the bottom or even burn. Season with salt or pepper to give the quinoa a bit more taste. At the end, add some olive oil, stir well and put aside. Cover the pot with a lid to keep the quinoa nice and warm.
  2. Cut the leaves of the kale from the stems with scissors and wash them thoroughly. Now clean the pepperoncini, remove the seeds and cut into fine strips. If you’re not big on spice, be careful with the amount. Soak the kale and the pepperoncini in salted water and bring to the boil. Due to the short time in boiling water, the vegetables do not lose their flavor when blanched and still remain crisp and fresh — preserving the important vitamins. Stir the kale and the pepperoncini into the quinoa. If the mixture is too dry, feel free to add a bit more water. Roast the pine nuts over a gentle heat in a non-stick pan. Make sure they are golden brown and not dark. Stir several times and then add to the rest. Season everything with the desired spices.
  3. To prepare the kale and quinoa mixture, spread it on the plates and sprinkle with cheese to your liking. Coriander can also be added to the whole thing, just be sure to wash and chop it first before adding to the dish. Now it’s ready to eat!

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Little potatoes — Reference Guide

Posted on 2 min read

1. What is the difference between waxy and floury potatoes?

There you are, standing in front of the vegetable section wanting to buy potatoes. You see several different varieties — ones with graceful sounding names and purposes. The packaging does not always state exactly which potatoes are suitable for what, like gratin, chips or mash, instead it just says waxy or floury cooking. Not to worry, here is a little cheat:

  • Waxy Potatoes (don’t disintegrate even after long cooking)

Varieties: Amandine, Annabelle, Celtiane, Charlotte, Cheyenne, Ditta, Erika, Gourmandine, Gwenne, Jazzy, Lady Christi, Venezia, Vitabella

Suitable for: potato salad, boiled potatoes, Gschwellti

  • Floury Potatoes (jump up when cooking and have rather floury consistency).

Varieties: Agria, Bintje, Challenger, Désirée, Jelly, Lady Felicia, Laura, Victoria

Suitable for: gratin, soup, gnocchi, stock

  • And for chips, hash browns and fried potatoes?

It is best to use a type of potato that can be heated to high temperatures and does not form acrylamide. These are typically floury varieties, such as Agria, Jelly and Victoria. (Source: kartoffel.ch)

2. How long can potatoes be stored?

Long — provided you do it right! Their ideal storage is in a spot where the temperature is neither too cold (like in the fridge) nor too warm. Between 4 and 10° would be ideal. It must also be dark and dry, so the potatoes don’t go mouldy or form solanine (see point 3). The potato also needs some air, so a closed plastic bag is only suitable to a limited extent. This is why potatoes are often sold in nets, boxes though baskets or knotted bags are also suitable.

3. Are raw potatoes poisonous?

Yes, raw potatoes should not be eaten. Potatoes are a nightshade plant that grows underground and contains a poisonous substance solanine. It is an organic compound that does not really affect us and is dissolved during cooking. Solanine is mainly found under the skin and in green and germinating areas. Special care should be taken with old potatoes, these should be peeled better and generally green and germinating spots should be cut out. Early potatoes can be eaten with the skin without hesitation.

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Year after year

Posted on 2 min read

Somehow these 5 (terrible) Christmas traditions that annoy us a little bit each evening as we sit in front of the Christmas tree are still a part of the Christmas season. What do they necessarily add to the Advent season?

Panettone

The round yeast dough cake is dreaded. While some people say they don’t like the candied fruit and others use the excuse that they already have a full stomach, there’s probably a panettone around the house somewhere. The classic souvenir that is never cut into. At any rate: if you are hungry and there is nothing in the house, you are bound to be happy and hope that it is one with sugar sprinkles.

Photo via Flickr from user N i c o l a under CC BY 2.0

Christmas Decorations: Lucy and Co.

It blinks and dazzles. If Lucy’s street lighting is already a giant thing and is being exploited by the media … what will it look like at home?

Film Classics like Cinderella, Sissi and Kevin

Cheesy scenarios, costumes and happy endings — Christmas is a time for sappy movies. Little Kevin has been grown up for a long time, but is shown every year in a permanent loop. You think to yourself “Here we go again…” and then you watch all three Sissi films and Love Actually to top it all off.

Last Christmas on Repeat 

Last Christmas, All I Want for Christmas is You, Jingle Bell Rock and many more — in the shops and on the radio with evergreens all over the place. The good mood is almost ready to head for the hills. But let’s be honest: Despacito in winter somehow does not seem appropriate. In creative families, people like to sing too. All gathered around the piano in their reindeer jumpers singing “Kling Glöckchen klingelingeling” together. Though in reality it unfortunately looks or sounds more like a loud cacophony, — it certainly makes for some laughs and a good atmosphere.

Welcome back, Spanischi Nüssli!

The return of Santa’s sack also marks the comeback of the Nüssli. They are everywhere as decoration and finger food. Although they are delicious and its nice to have something to snack on, the nut shells can be found all over the place. Usually accompanied by a fresh tangerine-y fragrance that is constantly in the air. All that’s missing is a glass of steaming mulled wine in your hand.

Cover Photo via Flickr von User Kevin Dooley under CC BY 2.0

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