turmeric

Though having only recently entered the mainstream as the ingredient of the moment, turmeric – or Curcuma longa as it’s known by its biological name – has been used for millennia everywhere from China and India to Jamaica and West Africa. While it’s likely that just about every bite of curry you’ve tasted in your lifetime contains turmeric, there is archaeological evidence indicating its use over 4 500 years ago. It has also long been used as a sacred root for body embellishment during cultural ceremonies. The Hindu tradition of Haldi, for example, sees the bride and groom having a tincture of oil, water and turmeric applied to their bodies as a blessing before their wedding.

Other than its gastronomical and religious uses, turmeric was grown and harvested as a natural textile dye – for centuries the distinctive yellow of Buddhist robes got their colour from turmeric. In contemporary fashion circles, one of the world’s largest fashion dye houses, Tintoria di Quaregna in Italy, has made headlines for its return to plant-based formulas with turmeric featuring prominently. Hip cosmetics brands such as NARS, Kiehl’s and Urban Decay have also been inspired by turmeric’s ancient cultural use as a beauty aid (it’s said to get skin glowing) and incorporated it into everything from make-up and foundation to face masks and moisturisers.

And then there is the evidence-based healing and health properties of turmeric, long used in the practice of natural medicine – in particular Ayurveda, the Indian system of holistic healing. Curcumin, the compound responsible for turmeric’s vivid colour, is known to have potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. This is a plant that packs a lot of punch!

HOW TO USE TURMERIC

Turmeric is on-trend, versatile, mild and earthy.

  • Concoct a warm tea or iced tea with thinly sliced fresh turmeric and ginger, sweeten with honey.
  • Make your favourite curry paste using turmeric and coconut oil. Store in a jar in the refrigerator and use in a sauce or when you make chicken, prawn or any other curry
  • Add a bit of grated turmeric and cardamom to hot chocolate for a mild earthy flavour.
  • For a pick-me-up a wellness shot mix grated turmeric, ginger and freshly squeezed orange juice. Add a little cayenne pepper at the end. Fresh mango or pineapple juice works just as well.
  • Mix turmeric and paprika and sprinkle over cauliflower florets. Season with salt and pepper and a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice. Roast in the oven at 180 degrees in the oven on a tray until golden brown. You can do the same with butternut or pumpkin.
  • Add to carrot, pumpkin, corn or sweet potato soup.
  • Spice up breakfast by adding a teaspoon or two of freshly grated turmeric to your flapjacks recipe. Serve with ginger honey.
  • Garnish your favourite cocktail with a ribbon of fresh turmeric just before serving and watch the colour change. Magic.
  • Add a bit of turmeric for your Asian style broth or any mash such as potato, sweet potato, pumpkin or carrot and potato.

GROWING TURMERIC

  • Turmeric is a fast grower, shooting new growth from the tubers in early summer. They can quickly grow up to two metres within a few weeks.
  • Turmeric is easy to grow during the warm summer months when plants will need regular watering. Grow tubers in pots with a fertile compost mix that drains well. Tubers should be kept dry when they are dormant.
  • We love turmeric because it’s such an easy grower. The leaves are very attractive but it’s the flowers that are the real show-stoppers. They’re like hidden gems between tall, lush growth.
  • It’s a little known fact, but the flowers also taste good!

Marshmallow with raspberries

Ingredients
2 egg whites
12 leaves gelatine
pinch of salt
500 g castor sugar
350 ml water
1 tablespoon flavourings rose water
1 punnet fresh raspberries

Method
Put the sugar and water in a pan and boil until they reach 127 C. Begin to beat the egg whites in an electric mixer when the sugar is at 121C. Soften the gelatine leaves is water and then dissolve the gelatine in the hot syrup.

Pour the syrup slowly  on to the whisked egg whites and add the rosewater. Let it whisk until cold and working quickly, pour half the marshmallow mixture into a tin or container dusted with a mixture of equal quantities of cornstarch and icing sugar. Lay the raspberries on top and cover with the remaining marshmallow mixture. Let it cool completely and then cut into cubes. Dust with the cornstarch/sugar mixture and serve. Store, refrigerated, in an airtight container.


DutchDeluxes

Founded in 2013, Dutchdeluxes is a design label based in the creative heart of the Dutch design city Eindhoven.

Driven by passion and fun, it brings extraordinary crafted ‘handmade in Holland’ food platters, bread boards and amazing aprons to the market. Classical elements are combined with sleek shapes in an innovative way.

The use of primary colours is fundamental for its design. Next to the range ‘Fashionable kitchen stuff & tableware’ the company is known for its collection ‘Incredible Interior Stuff’, 'Le Chique Bath furniture’ and ‘Just Good Side tables’.

We love the sleek simplicity and eye-catching design of our DutchDeluxes bread boards. Not only are they a novel wat for serving bread, but canapés work just as well for a cocktail party. Their size ensures that they look impressive and you don't constantly have to refill them, you'll always get enough canapés on.

For more information visit www.dutchdeluxes.com.

If you would like to spoil yourself with DutchDeluxe items, they're available at Baden Baden Interior in Amsterdam.


Blend it to the Max - The Magimix Blender

A kitchen appliance we cannot live without. Our Magmix blender makes blending easier than ever before.

It's automatic pre-set functions for soups, smoothies, frozen desserts and crushed ice ensure you don’t have to muddle through confusing settings: simply press a button and you’re on your way to delicious, healthy snacks and meals. There is also a pulse setting for extra control.

This powerful and quiet machine uses the exclusive BlenderMix system for a finer blend. The heat-resistant glass jug has a watertight lid and pouring lip for complete ease of use.

A large 1.8L capacity provides plenty of space, and thanks to a 1200W output it won’t be long until you, just like us, enjoy the fruits of your culinary labour! The handy spatula helps you get every last drop out of this blender, and you can creatively experiment using the included recipe book or from our recipes on the side.

Come and visit us from June at the Westergasfabriek and test the blender and other Magimix appliances out for yourself. As one of our prestigious partners, we'll be using Magimix appliances in our brand new kitchen.

Here are a few of our recipes using the Magimix blender:
Kale smoothie
Green Smoothie
Blackberry Smoothie
Pea and Mint Soup
Roasted Pumpkin and Dukkah Soup


A Rainbow of Le Creuset Pans

Colour in the kitchen is the trend of 2015 and Le Creuset is fully embracing it. After the successful introduction of numerous accessories in bright colours, the rainbow has now cast it's colours over the cast iron range. The French manufacturer has introduced the roasting and casserole pans in no less than 15 different colours. In addition, 'the icon' has also undergone a re-styling; thanks to new insights and technology, the handles, lid and interior have been improved.

Own site
The renewed pans have even been given their own site. On www.mijnnieuwelecreuset.nl you can read all about the new colours, design and recipes. For those who cannot choose between the 15 colours, there is a special colour test. That way, you can find out exactly which colour suits you!

Blue = powerful, red = sexy, pink = seductive, bold = green, yellow = vivant and orange = experienced

High Quality
Le Creuset cast iron has been been known for it's high quality and durability for 90 years. Where possible, the manufacturer adjusts the pans to suit modern times and the demands of users. Thus a new, stronger enamel on the inside makes the pan even more resistant to food acids, scratches, thermal shocks and is easier to clean. The braising / stewing pans have ergonomic handles that are 45% larger than the previous ones ensuring a better grip. The lid design has also been adjusted so that it fits better and the food retains more juices and flavour. The stainless steel handle is heat-resistant and ergonomic.

All Heat Sources
Le Creuset cast iron is suitable for any heat source (even induction). In addition, the cast iron is 100% recyclable and energy efficient, thus better for our planet. The cast iron pans, grills and trays come with a life long manufacturer's warranty.

Le Creuset products are available at better department stores, cooking and household stores. For more information visit the web shop: www.lecreuset.nl


Baden Baden Interior & Mud Australia

It is with great pride that we welcome a new partner to Amsterdam Flavours. Baden Baden Interior is an interior design store in Amsterdam offering an eclectic mix of furniture, design, art, objects and accessories.

Baden Baden Interior is the main importer and supplier of Mud Australia porcelain. When searching for a new range of plates for our food photography and styling, we came across and instantly fell in love with the Mud Australia range because of their natural, unique shapes and beautiful colours. After doing some research, we found our way to Baden Baden Interior.

Mud Australia was founded in 1994. The porcelain range, designed by Shelley Simpson, combines hand made processes, clean lines, colour palette and functionality. The end result is a product that neatly intersects a minimalist aesthetic with an artisan finish. Their porcelain fits in any interior, providing a timeless alternative to mass produced ceramic design.

All Mud Australia porcelain is handmade in their Sydney factory by a staff of professional and in-house ceramicists. Each piece is designed to last and manufactured using the best materials available.

Made from Limoges porcelain, sourced directly from France, the pigment is tinted through the porcelain body to provide colour-depth. Clear glaze is then hand brushed to the interior of each piece leaving the exterior with a vitrified stone-like surface that becomes smooth with handling.

The range evolves seasonally with the addition of new shapes and colours.

For more information, please visit Baden Baden Interior and Mud Australia.


Sous Vide Cooking

Grant Sous Vide machines recently joined us as a prestigious partner. Founded in 1952 and based near Cambridge, UK, Grant Sous Vide water baths and modular cookers are used all over the globe by some of the world’s most prestigious catering establishments and venues. Their machines are used by some of the worlds most well known chefs including Marcus Wareing, Ashley Palmer-Watts and Angela Hartnett, MBE.

As we are in the process of creating our new catering and dinner menus for Spring, we thought that our new sous vide machine would offer us the inspiration needed.

But what is sous vide cooking? Sous vide is a method of cooking food sealed in airtight plastic bags in a water bath or in a temperature-controlled steam environment for longer than normal cooking times, at an accurately regulated temperature much lower than normally used for cooking, typically around 55 °C  to 60 °C for meats and higher for vegetables. The intention is to cook the item evenly, ensuring that the inside is properly cooked without overcooking the outside and retain moisture.

We are still in the testing fase, but the results are promising. Keep an eye on the site, we'll be publishing some of our sous vide recipes soon.


United Pancakes

United Pancakes brings the classic and much loved Dutch pancake into the 21st century. They've been open for 3 months and are redefining the way we eat pancakes. They are making pancakes accessible to everyone.

United Pancakes was born out of the fact that there were no artisan pancake restaurants. They noticed a gap in the market and so this brand was born.

All their products are organic and everything is homemade. Flour comes from their own mill and is available to purchase in the their little shop together with homemade apple and pear syrups, old fashioned Dutch candy and their own branded aprons, t-shirts a baby ware.

The restaurant has a great intimate atmosphere with rough bare brick walls and lots of old wood. It's also an ideal place for kids and the staff are friendly and very attentive.

A new addition are pancakes to go, which is great if you need your pancake fix but don't have the time. It's cooked fresh to order then filled with the topping/flavouring of your choice to enjoyed on the go. We took ours to go as we didn't have much time and it was without doubt one of the most delicious pancakes we've had in a while. We will be back!

For more information, please visit United Pancakes.


Free installation Quooker

Our friends at Quooker are offering a great deal! If you order a brand new Quooker Fusion in December, they will install it for free. That's a saving of €200. What a brilliant offer!

Quooker Fusion is a fantastic device, giving you cold, hot and boiling water out of one tap.

But that's not all. If you order a Quooker in December and are that weeks 10th order, you'll receive your Quooker for free.

Click on this link for more info: Free installation

 

 

 


China Town

Every city around the world has it's own China Town and Amsterdam is no different.

On a street called Zeedijk, a stones-throw away from the Red Light District, you'll find a cluster of Chinese restaurants and supermarkets. There are Peking ducks hanging in the windows, Chinese families doing their groceries, paying their respects at the beautiful Chinese Temple or grabbing a bite to eat.

We needed some specialty Asian ingredients so we made our way to Dun Yong supermarket. You'll find an incredible array of Chinese, Japanese, Thai and Asian ingredients. Ranging from frozen tom yum soup packs, fresh coriander with the root attached to a range of woks and steamers. This is the one-stop shop for your Asian store cupboard and ingredients you won't find any where else.

It was getting late and we hadn't eaten lunch yet, so Mischa suggested we go and eat dim sum at Hoi Tin. He's been eating there for years and has always wanted to take Bernadette to try it out, so this was the perfect opportunity.

We sat down to a pot of fragrant, steaming jasmine tea before tucking in to steamed dumplings with prawns and scallops. Aubergine slices, filled with pounded shrimp, deep fried in a light batter and served on a soy based sauce. To end, sesame balls, fried and filled with a sweet peanut paste. Reasonably priced food which does wonders for your soul and belly! We'll be going back soon to have dinner there.

 


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