Monday, May 5, 2014

Super-easy-peasy Roasted Duck

Sometimes I think that an OVEN is the human greatest invention. I could eat roasted and baked and grilled EVERYTHING. Oven is a miracle box - you put something slightly appetizing, say carrots or sweet potato or chicken (or something totally unappetizing like Brussels sprouts) and out comes a food for gods. Amen.
And there are only few thing more delicious MADE IN OVEN than roasted duck. Crispy skin on the outside, melting-on-your tongue meat on the inside. Yum! And the best part - it's super easy to make!

You'll need:
1 duck
1 apple

Salt your duck generously on the inside and outside and let the salt work its magic for one hour or up to whole night. (If you don't have time, don't panic: I left my duck on the counter for one hour and it was enough.)
Preheat your oven to 200°C. Wash the salt of the duck, pat it dry and stuff it with the apple. Put it in the roasting pan breast-side down, salt it "just right" and add 1 cup of water to the pan. Cover with the lid and roast for one hour. Take the lid off and roast for another 30 minutes. Then turn the duck carefully so the breasts are on top and roast for another 30 minutes. Ta-da! You're done!
And wait - that's not all - the watery substance in your roasting pan when it cools down - that is muy delicious duck fat. Booyah! That's what I'm talking about. The oven is a real magic box!

Serve with your choice of veggies and ENJOY! (I served it to my fiance - still getting used to calling him that ;)- and he literally licked the plate and made an observation how much he enjoys his affianced life. It's this good.)

Niekedy si myslím, že rúra na pečenie je najlepší vynález ľudstva. Je to taká zázračná skrinka - do vnútra sa vloží niečo priemerne chutné ako napríklad sladké zemiaky alebo mrkva alebo kura (alebo niečo nepríliš chutné ako rúžičkový kel) a po chvíľke vyberiete odtiaľ jedlo pre bohov! Amen.
A jedno z najchutnejších jedál MADE IN RÚRA je rozhodne pečená kačica. Chrumkavá kožička zvonka a na jazyku sa rozpúšťajúce mäsko vnútri. Mňam! A najlepšie na tom je, že je to neuveriteľne ľahké jedlo na prípravu.
1 kačica
1 jablko
Poriadne posolíme kačicu zvonka a zvnútra a necháme soľ pracovať najmenej hodinu až po celú noc. (Ak sa ponáhľate, nepanikárte, ja som ju nechala hodinu na stole a stačilo :)).
Rúru rozohrejeme na 200°C. Kačicu umyjeme, osušíme a do vnútra vložíme pokrájané jabĺčko. Vložíme do pekáča prsiami nadol, posolíme "přiměřeně" a podlejeme vodou. Pečieme prikrytú 1 hodinu. Odokryjeme a pečieme ďalších 30 minút odokrytú. Potom ju opatrne otočíme prsiami nahor a pečieme ďalších 30 minút. Voila! Hotovo.
A to nie je všetko - tekutinka, čo nám zostala v pekáči sa po vychladnutí zmení na fantastický kačací tuk. Mňam po druhýkrát! Veď Vám hovorím, že rúra je zázračná skrinka.

Servírujeme so zeleninou podľa Vášho výberu. (Ja som to naservírovala svojmu snúbencovi - stále si ešte zvykám na toto nové pomenovanie ;) a on doslovne vylízal tanier a poznamenal, že tento snúbenecký život sa mu celkom pozdáva. Až také dobré je toto jedlo!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

I said "YES"

Today wasn't the most beautiful spring May day but after late breakfast and cancelled golf plans we decided to embrace the nature...

....(some of us quite literally) and visit Arboretum. I was snappy-happy and smelly-happy, too. Don't you just love spring with all these beautiful colors and smells. Divine!

I was fooling around and when we found my most most most favorite flower in the world - Iris - I was just super happy. See the smile below. I love how Irises smell because my grandma used to grow them and they always remind me of my childhood. 

When we found another Irises I snapped another picture:

...and when I turned around I found my boyfriend kind of kneeling behind me so I snapped his picture, too.

He was very bemused (as is obvious at the photo) because he realized that I had no idea what was going on. And then he showed me the box he was holding in his hand. (Now you see the box, too). And I got a little bit teary. And then he asked me the question and I said YES. (I literally said "yes" because he asked me in English and later when I told him he did, he didn't even realized it. I know, we're weird this way. I write this blog in English so I don't have a right to cast any aspersions. And I have to say I kinda liked it :)).

O gosh, now I am going to love Irises even more! Then I had this huge big smile on my face.

But here's a picture for you as a proof that I am not the only one in this relationship to do crazy stuff:

Then we went to see (and tell) my parents, I called my brother and my fiancee (heh, I will have to get used to this :D) called his mom. And then I have to confess I posted it on facebook. I have no idea if it's proper or absolutely not.

I can't stop looking at the ring. It's soooo prettyyyyy. It's perfect. It's my dream ring. (But I'll try to forget the big fight I instigated a few weeks ago cause I was getting a little bit (a lot) nervous about the fact that we've been together for almost eight years and everybody around us was getting married and having children, and I was getting older and everybody was asking me WHEN will I get married and I had no answer to that cause I had no idea what he was waiting for and... well, I guess I am, too, only human.)

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

I am sick

I am sick of my work.
I am sick of paleo.
I am sick of my "last kilos".
I am sick of my clothes.
I am sick of my hair.
I am sick of my problematic skin.
I am sick of having to plan my future.
I am sick of waiting for my boyfriend to ask me to marry him.
I am sick of EVERYBODY asking me when will I get married and have children.
I am sick of my biological clock.
I am sick of all the responsibility.
I am sick of saving money.
I am sick of spending money.
I am sick of reading love stories.
I am sick of ballet.
I am sick of working and doing everything alone.
I am sick of making important decisions EVERY SINGLE DAY.
I am sick of myself to do more, to learn more, to earn more, to be more and feeling guilty if I don't.
I am sick of planning to live my life instead of actually living it.

And now I would like to hit a RESET button and start from the scratch.
Because most of all I am sick of being an ungrateful whining bitch.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

It's just fruit

Russia may be the land of vodka, Scotland the land of whiskey, France the land of wine, but Central Europe is definitely a land of  fruit distillates. Slivovica, hruškovica, malinovica, etc. You take plums, pears, raspberries, apricots, any fruit, you name it... and I bet that people in here can AND WILL turn it into an alcohol. Alcohol production is a fairly typical part of our lives (yep, never the truest words did I say before). I actually never met a Slovak whose family didn't produce their own wine or distillate (if not every year then at least once in their lives). My family was big on wine and as a kid I spent every September grape picking. The tradition lives now with my cousins (and luckily for me no grape picking anymore). Yep, my laziness is talking for me, again.
So what I am trying to say - yesterday I had an opportunity to attend a tasting of fantastic R.Jelinek Moravian fruit distillates. Unfortunately I didn't grab my camera so I'll try to improvise.
The line up looked like this:

Plum, Pear, Cherry, Raspberry, Strawberry and Apricot
Yes, we call them as we call the fruits they are made of. It always sounds nice (and innocent) to drink pear or plum, doesn't it? But these puppies pack a punch, holy moly 40%.

We all got empty little glasses and glasses of water and I started to pray that I will not get drunk TOO QUICKLY. First we tasted bare distillates and then we moved on to cocktails. I preferred the taste of cherry, while Mary liked pear and Jarush liked plum. We all agreed that raspberry and strawberry tasted kind of fake. And of the cocktails - the ginger, elderberry with pear was the best one!
After the tasting we proceeded to have a serious discussion about Apple and Android. - Yep, we started to have a serious argument. You know, first world problems. So I decided to change the topic to cars and let me tell you, after about 30 minutes of us (me and the guys) showing each other the videos of BMWs and Audis and Maseratis, the girls were none too happy about it.
So we decided to move on to Wine-bar in the centre of Nitra where a friend of Jarush is working. It's a perfect little cozy place.

And we continued to do our tasting of Slovak alcohol - with a lovely Devin wine from Repa Winery. The four of us - me, Mary, Jarush and Marek (I don't know why but we always end up like this - the four of us. But I like it veeery much). We polished of some plates of prosciutto and olives and sun-dried tomatoes as if we were starving. So I ordered another big plate of different cheeses and another prosciutto and olives. And let me tell you, even if I had my camera I wouldn't be able to take a picture of it. The food disappeared as if by magic. Good times.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The Cracklin' Chicken / Chrumkavé kurča

It's April FINALLY - all the taxes are done and my twelve hour workdays are over! To review - I finished 59 tax declarations, I haven't cooked, run, played the piano, attended ballet lesson, learned Italian, eaten Paleo, cleaned the house or done any laundry at all in the final weeks. My man put on 6 kilos and the only reason I haven't is that I rarely ate any dinner because I usually came at home after 8pm and exhausted fell into bed.
I feel like I have a serious case of PTSD. I am completely wrung out. And I am serious about changing my career. I have reached the point when I have only two options - to train to become a tax adviser and employ other accountants or train to become an auditor and work next five years for free as an assistant auditor. I have learned everything I could about accounting, I have established a successful company and I am sick of being responsible for other people's money. The stress is slowly killing me and this way I'll be gray haired by the time I'll be forty. It's time to move on.
And it's time to live again. My man took me to an amazing dinner to my favorite restaurant in my city - The Golden Key. And next time I promise to take my camera and take the pictures of all the delicious food we ate. My brother took me and my mom to an amazing lunch today - to another great restaurant - Palenica Jelsovce. Yet again no camera.

But I finally cooked a dinner tonight and I managed to snap some pictures.
The recipe is from nomnompaleo - The Cracklin' Chicken. And it is DELICIOUS. And so EASY to make. And super FAST.

Buy bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs. Take some kitchen scissors and remove the bones.

Flatten the meat with your fists a little bit. Put some salt on the skin side and salt and spice of your choice on the meat size.

Heat ghee on your pan. Fry your skin side for 7 to 10 minutes until it's golden and crunchy. Cover with splatter screen.

Turn the meat and cook for three more minutes. And you're done.
I tossed a quick salad to compliment the meat - mangold, lamb's lettuce, pear, blueberries, almonds, olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

SK: Apríl, konečne! Všetky daňové priznania sú hotové a moje dvanásťhodinové pracovné dni sú za mnou. Bilancia - 59 hotových priznaní, osledné týždne som nič nevarila, nebola som behať, nehrala som na klavír, nechodila som na balet, neučila som sa po taliansky, nejedla som Paleo, neupratovala som a neprala som. Môj muž pribral šesť kíl a jediný dôvod prečo som JA nepribrala je ten, že keď som zvyčajne po ôsmej večer prišla domov z práce, vôbec som nevečerala a len som vyčerpaná padla do postele.
Cítim sa ako vojak, ktorý sa práve vrátil z vojny, myslím, že mám seriózny post-traumatický stresový syndróm. Som úplne vyšťavená. A seriózne zvažujem zmenu kariéry. Dostala som sa do bodu, kde mám len dve možnosti -  buď sa stanem daňovým poradcom a začnem zamestnávať alebo sa stanem audítorom a nasledujúcich päť rokov makám takmer zadarmo ako pomocný audítor. Naučila som sa o účtovníctve všetko, čo sa dalo, rozbehla som úspešne biznis a som už chorá z toho, že som zodpovedná za peniaze cudzích ľudí. Stres ma pomaly zabíja a týmto spôsobom života bude v štyridsiatke šedivá. Prišiel čas pohnúť sa ďalej.
A prišiel čas opäť žiť. Môj muž ma zobral na úžasnú večeru do mojej obľúbenej reštaurácie v našom meste - do Zlatého kľúčika. A sľubujem, že nabudúce si zoberiem so sebou aj fotoaparát a odfotím všetky skvelé jedlá, čo sme jedli. Môj bráško zobral mňa a mamičku dnes na úžasný obed - do ďalšej skvelej reštaurácie - Pálenica Jelšovce. A zase som so sebou nevzala foťák.
ALE dnes som konečne po dlhom čase navarila večeru a dokonca som bola schopná odfotiť pár záberov. Recept je od nomnompaleo - Chrumkavé kuracie stehná. A je fakt CHUTNÝ. A vážne JEDNODUCHÝ. A super RÝCHLY.
Kúpime horné kuracie stehná s kožou aj kosťami. Kuchynskými nožnicami odstránime kosti. Mäso na doske trochu päsťami zarovnáme na rovnakú hrúbku. Posolíme stranu s kožou. Posolíme a okoreníme stranu s mäsom. Rozpálime na panvici ghee a opečieme asi 7 až 10 tú stranu s kožou. Prikryjeme mriežkou proti prskaniu. Keď je koža zlatá a chrumkavá, mäso otočíme a dopečieme asi 3 minúty. Voila - je to hotové.
Ako prílohu som narýchlo urobila šalát - mangold, valeriánka, hruška, čučoriedky, mandľové plátky, olivový olej a balzamikový ocot.
Dobrú chuť.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

I love Slovakia

Since the last few weeks I've been working 12 hours a day, every day, I don't have time to do anything except work, eat and sleep. But to keep me in a good mood, sometimes I like to watch this:

Monday, March 10, 2014

Banana-coconut-pineapple Paleo Pancakes / Banánovo-kokosovo-ananásové paleo lievance

What really fascinate me is the fact that when people call me on Sunday in March with questions like what are you doing? where are you? and I answer - working - at work - they seem really shocked. And that leaves me absolutely baffled because I always tell people that in February and March I work 24/7 - actually I love to rant about me working EVERY SINGLE DAY! (We all need some weird hobbies - this is mine obviously).
But I like to feel like I actually had a weekend - so I like to do stuff on weekends that makes working without pause less dreadful - stuff like sleeping a liiiiitle bit longer or drinking a glass of wine at the evening (or two glasses and then my man likes to reproach me - jokingly I hope - that I am drinking his expensive wine) or making sweet breakfast.
Since sugar, flour, milk and myself are no longer friends (and mostly I am looking at you Milka! I loved you so much and you betrayed me thus - I saw the pimples on my forehead you left me! Now I won't be able to trust you or any other milk chocolate for that matter - you left me completely milk-chocolate-phobic!) I have to improvise how to reach my goal of sweetness.
So I give you these pancakes with no sugar (only the natural one in the fruit), milk or flour. Amazing, I know - High five!

You'll need:
2 bananas
3 eggs
50g of shredded coconut
1 tsp of cinnamon
2 tbsp of pineapple cut into small pieces
2 tbsp of blueberries
coconut oil for frying

Mix bananas, eggs, coconut and cinnamon in the food processor. Then add pineapple and blueberries and mix with the spoon. Heat coconut oil in the pan over medium heat and add small tablespoons of batter to the pan to make small pancakes. When done on one side, flip. That's it. Enjoy with fruit! (Or with fantastic cup of Italian espresso from coffee a friend of mine bothered to bring me from Italy. Some people are so cool!)

SK: Čo ma vážne fascinuje je, že keď mi niekto zavolá v nedeľu počas marca s otázkami ako čo robíš? kde si? a ja odpoviem - pracujem - v práci - že ten niekto je z toho v šoku. A to ja vôbec nechápem, pretože ja sa s radosťou každému, kto ma počúva, posťažujem, že vo februári a v marci pracujem nonstop - v skutočnosti milujem, keď sa môžem porozčuľovať, že pracujem KAŽDÝ BOŽÍ DEŇ! (Každý máme nejaké hobby a toto je očividne moje.)
Ale aby to nebolo až také hrozné a aby som mala aspoň pocit, že som mala víkend tak robím veci, ktoré mi to trošku uľahčia ako napríklad pospinkám si o troooošku dlhšie alebo si dám pohárik vína večer (alebo dva a potom mi muž zo srandy - aspoň dúfam - nadáva, že mu pijem jeho drahé víno) alebo si navarím sladké raňajky.
Keďže cukor, múka, mlieko a ja sa už viacej nekamarátime (za toto hlavne viním teba, Milka! Ja som ťa nesmierne milovala a ty si ma takto zradila - videla som tie pupáky na čele, čo si mi zanechala! Od teraz už nebudem schopná ti viac veriť a ani inej mliečnej čokoláde - kvôli tebe mám fóbiu z mliečnej čokolády!), musela som improvizovať a nájsť spôsob ako dosiahnuť môj cieľ sladkých raňajok.
Výsledkom sú tieto úžasné palacinky bez cukru (ak nepočítame prírodný cukor normálne sa vyskytujúci v ovocí), bez mlieka alebo múky. Fantázia, ja viem - High five!
2 banány
3 vajíčka
50 g strúhaného kokosu
1 lyžička škorice
2 lyžice ananásu nakrájaného na malé kúsky
2 lyžice čučoriedok
kokosový olej na pečenie
V mixéri vymixujeme banány, vajcia, kokos a škoricu. Pridáme ananás a čučoriedky a vmiešame ich lyžicou do cesta. Zohrejeme na miernom ohni kokosový olej na panvici a pridáme po lyžiciach cesto na panvicu a urobíme malé lievance. Keď sú hotové z jednej strany, otočíme na druhú. To je celé. Podávame s ovocím! (Alebo s talianskym espressom z kávy, ktorú mi priniesol kamarát z Talianska - niektorí ľudia sú fakt úžasní!)