Phaedra's Journal - Eat, Play, Live

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Home-created chocolate pralines - the result after about two-hour work this morning.
I recommend this praline-making as a winter indoor activity; its byproducts are as amazing as the main achievements. It's healing and can easily bring me into the 'flow state.'
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You can be creative and hide whatever you love inside the pralines. This is something not available from the ready products on the market, no matter how famous and expensive they are.
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It's very common to bake all kinds of cookies here for the coming year-end holidays. Making good quality and unique chocolate pralines is a more-than-happy alternative for me.
Beautiful! Those look amazing! Can you share a recipe?
 

Phaedra

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Beautiful! Those look amazing! Can you share a recipe?
I don't have a recipe; you only need to melt different kinds of chocolate and reassemble them.
My suggestion is to start with white chocolate (when the cacao content is higher than 30% is better, but whatever is available and easy to buy is always a good start) and dark chocolate (I use 85% and 70% mainly).

Ordinary milk chocolate, nuts, and dried berries are also nice for the initial practices - melting, re-forming (with silicone molds), cooling, de-molding, and done.

This is my praline-making box, and I am also a newbie explorer in this chocolate galaxy. :frow

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Phaedra

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I love home food!
Fried dumplings with eggs, different styles of pickled veggies, and turkey veggie soup - this is something impossible to get here in Germany. The only chance is that we drive 90 minutes to Düsseldorf downtown and spend something around 35 Euro/per person.

Nope, spending so much money and time on a so-so meal somewhere is ridiculous.

When I have time, I will always make some dumplings and preserve them in the freezer.
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I always have a nice clear soup on the stove, especially on cold days. Such soups can be the base of many delicious dishes; for example, our soup today was used for steaming the fried dumplings as well.
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Pickled or fermented vegetables are essential elements for quick meals when I don't have time to prepare vegetables separately.
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The homemade chocolate pralines are comforting, too.
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Tea and coffee are always ready, too - a kind of self-sufficiency.
 

Phaedra

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Tsukimi-Style Rice

Tsukimi is a term from Japanese and can be used as a type of cuisine with one egg in the center of the dish, either raw or sunny-side up, with the yolk representing the full moon.
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The chicken skins, meaty bones (I always debone the chicken thighs and use the meat for other dishes), and tallow are sometimes taken as scraps and discarded. Such wastes are unbelievable.

Well, first, the chicken skin and beef tallow - I usually cut them into smaller pieces, season them with salt and spices, and let them sit in the fridge for a couple of days.
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With the middle-high heat (and some patience), we will get lovely cracklings and flavored oil.
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I fried chopped scallion and smashed ginger in the oil; the final product is like this and can be used for many dishes. It can stay fresh in the fridge for weeks and in the freezer for at least one year. It will immediately boost umami and flavors to clear soup, noodles, rice, etc. I would love to share more about such seasonings in the future.
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And I used chicken bones, garlic, and tomatoes to make today's broth. Pan-frying the meaty bones and garlic for 5-10 minutes first, and the broth will have a much richer flavor.
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I used this broth to cook the rice then.
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This Tsukimi-style Rice is a reunion of a few cheap ingredients. However, like a Shepherd's Pie or Farmer's Casserole, it's humble but won't let down.
 
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