When I left from JFK about a week ago something was different this time than the past 5 years.
Although New York is my second home, my love affair and my continuous “masterclass in survival” I felt light and unattached, ready to say goodbye for some time…
The first thing I did when I arrived was taking off my shoes and running around barefoot.
I have not worn shoes in days and I am finally connecting to the Earth again.
One of the best feelings being on the countryside.
I wear the same shirt and shorts every day, I forget to brush my hair and shaving my legs feels pretty unnecessary, too.
Don’t get me wrong – I am still looking after myself and I am not turning into some hippie-revolutionary-chick that lives on wild berries, water and love…but being so close to nature almost encourages you to celebrate the simple things in life and connects you to your roots.
And that’s just what I do. Giving in and letting go…
But I think the best moments are still spending time with my little brother and being surrounded with family and close friends.
That’s all I really care about right now.
And of course our gorgeous garden with flowers, trees, vegetables, fruits and herbs.
I love the abundance of colours, shapes, smells and flavours and transforming these inspirations into my dishes.
Creating new recipes in our kitchen with a food processor, dehydrator, blender, mandoline and a grain mill is pretty much close to heaven for me.
I have already made two batches of raw crackers (recipe below), grey poppy seed truffles and I am having a big glass of vegetable juice first thing in the morning.
Usually I am using beets, carrots, chard and parsley I harvested from our garden the night before.
My brother (kinda) likes it, too.
Well, at least he tries…
Last weekend we had a big family BBQ and I prepared some (raw) side dishes:
And for dessert…
Raw Porcini mushroom-Squash Crackers
1 small yellow squash or zuchhini, roughly chopped
2 cups ground flax meal
1/2 cup almond flour
1/4 cup sesame seeds
2 Tbsp a mixture of dried porcini mushrooms (adds an earthy umami flavour), thyme, black pepper, rosmary, piment, cloves, juniper berries and yellow mustard seeds
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp honey or maple syrup
1 Tbsp lemon juice
Put everything in a food processor and blend until smooth.
If it’s too wet add more flax meal.
It should be moist but not too runny.
Spread it as thin as possible on a sheet of wax paper and dehydrate it for about 3 hours (or on 115°F = 50°C in a conventional oven).
Place it on a chopping board upside down, take off the paper, cut it into squares, triangles, stripes… and dehydrate for another 5-10 hours until it reaches the desired consistency (5 hours for more chewy texture which I prefer or up to 10 hours for really crunchy crackers).
I dip them in hummus, guacamole or “topfen” = german quark cheese (check out this recipe from Saveur) and my brother loves to eat them for breakfast with butter. Purist.