How to dye Easter eggs – Come colorare le uova di Pasqua – Farbanje Uskršnjih pisanica

When I was a little girl, my mother taught me how to prepare beautiful coloured Easter eggs. This is another traditional Croatian recipe (or folk custom). She learned this art from her mother. I remember my grandmother also painted eggs with the beeswax and special writing tool, but unfortunately I didn’t have a chance to learn it from her. Modern times brought us to very fast way of living and some long makings didn’t survive, even some products disappeared, because old fashioned. But we continued to maintain the tradition at any cost and every year the eggs we made were more beautiful! I always keep few most beautiful eggs in the coffee cups until next year Easter as souvenirs (warning: it might happen that the egg explodes after few months, so handle it carefully).
Another amazing thing is that the colour I’m using is fully natural. I use onion skin to dye Easter eggs. I collect it all year long, because you will need a large quantity of it to get the beautiful dark brown colour. The decoration is made with plants and herbs, you can choose whatever you like, from clover to parsley. I found the print of darnel very charming. No problems if eggs get cracked during cooking and some coloure dye the egg white. You can eat your eggs anyway, as you have not used artificial products!
Take all time you need, handle your eggs gently and decorate them patiently.
Let’s create the art!


Dark chocolate muffins with orange flavour – Muffins di cioccolato fondente all’aroma di arancia – Muffins s tamnom čokoladom i aromom naranče

There are moments in our life when we need a hug, when we need to be revitalized and supported. Often we do it by ourselves, nobody help us, nobody is willing to do it. We try to find the strength deep inside our mind and we get up and continue to walk. This is the story of the nature too and this is how we are. Winter is over, new season arrived. Spring will bring plenty of joy and energy and everything will shine again!


Pan brioche muffins with candied orange peels and almonds – Muffins di Pan brioche con le scorzette d’arancia candite e mandorle – Muffins od slatkog dizanog tijesta s kandiranim koricama naranče i bademima

This place is crowded with orange dishes, I know, but the winter can’t finish without another citrus recipe. I have found the way to use the entire fruit, without wasting a single bit of edible part of the fruit. I’m very excited when I can use all ingredients, because the food is so precious and we should never waste it. And if you find some seeds inside the orange pulp, you can plant them, we usually do it, well this part is more Mr. M.’s job.
In this last year I have discovered the spicy flavour of cardamom and now I like to add it to the dough. Its flavour reminds me our journeys to Nordics and the beautiful atmosphere and calmness you can feel all around. We have spent there the most attractive moments in the wintertime. I had a feeling that the time got trapped by the ice, the daylight was so short and the air was freezing. But you have these perfect, soft and spicy buns that warm your soul up and make you forget the darkness and the wintery mood.
I have combined the flavours of orange, cardamom and almonds this time. The results are my “soft &spicy” pan brioche muffins that bring the North and South together.


Phyllo pastry potato pie – Torta salata di pasta fillo con patate - Pita krumpiruša

I have always in the fridge one roll (even two) of puff pastry and one of phyllo pastry. These are my last minute rescue assistants when the fridge is full of left-overs and the time is missing. And it is always missing, especially during the week when the working day finishes late and we are starving.
But it is very difficult to find the phyllo pastry in Italy, so this is another typical ingredient that I pack in the car each time I go back home. I love it sweet and savoury, I like the crispy crust and the golden brown coloure it gets during cooking. I remember my mother preparing her homemade pastry that was so thin. It was transparent, it was an intact sheet of smooth pastry. I will never be able to do it, but I will try, I want to feel the movement of the light sheet of pastry waving above my hands.
This kind of pie is the traditional dish we eat often in Croatia, usually filled with fresh cheese and sour cream (salted) or with apples (sweet). But the pie with potatoes is something special. My mother learned to cook it from her Bosnian friend and she prepare it each time me and Mr. M. get back home, we love it so much and we just can’t stop eating it.


Quince candies - Caramelle di mela cotogna – Bomboni od dunja

This recipe is part of the contest Kuvarigrice, our host for October 2015 is Kristina

Almost one month passed from the first (and hopefully the last!) this year snowfall. And it arrived silent, there is always the same perception of stillness and calm when it comes to snow. The snow continued to fall all night long and it was impetuous and so powerful and the signs of ruin appeared in the morning under the thick white cover. Tree branches were too weak to bear heavy weight of wet snow and collapsed, whole trees collapsed. A sad view of disaster remained all around for days. And then the snow started to disappear and the sound of the chainsaw arrived. We will miss our beautiful weeping willow and the pine in our garden. Just two miserable logs and many twigs and pine needles still lie on the moss-covered soil. I’ve picked up from the ground some pine branches and pine cones and took some pictures with the last quince candies that I forgot to have in a jar from last November. The combination of two fragrances is pleasant: smell of resin and light cinnamon perfume of dried quince go together surprisingly well. Today  I offer you the beauty from the waste.


Orange and red onion marmalade – Marmellata di arance e cipolle rosse – Marmelada od naranče i crvenog luka

I’m obsessed with oranges and this year I did so many recipes with oranges and other citrus fruits. The best moment during the preparation of any citrus recipe is while I peel them and cut them. Their perfume is divine and it remains in my skin for long time. The fruits spray some juice and essential oil all around and the atmosphere in the kitchen gets very fresh and fragrant. I can’t promise I’ll stop thinking about citrus recipes now. The inspiration is still everywhere and it’s hard to resist. I already spoke about this marmalade in few last posts. It’s a good combination of sweet, savory and bitter form the orange peel.