It’s been so long…

It’s been very long time since my last blog – almost a year… I feel like I forgot how to use this site. I just got very busy with my baking, and what even worse – got obsessed with it!  I know, when is something happening to you, there is always somebody else in this same situation too. You are never alone. So, I am curious, is there anybody else who are obsessed with baking in my readers? I hope that somebody will read this post anyway, even though the post itself about really nothing important.

I just think, that when you are you doing something it has to be from your heart, not just because you have to do that. That’s when it becomes your passion. And people always feel that. Yesterday I had very good time watching movie  JULIE &JULIA about Julia Child. Meryl  Streep and Amy Adams were both great in the movie. And you can see how they both are obsessed with cooking! And what is funny to – with writing also! Good example for me. Maybe I will restart my blogging again, will see.

  • So, that was it. Have a great week ahead and always follow your true passion!tort1

Armenian Style Dolma

Hello my friends!

Today I want to post a recipe for a main dish, which we call Dolma. It’s hard to say what country is an origin of it, because almost every country in Mediterranean region has similar something. They differ a little, one from another, but idea is the same. It’s basically vine leaves stuffed with filling.

That’s why I call my recipe an Armenian style 🙂

Let’s begin… First of all, our ingredients :

1. Vine leaves – 1 jar (they sell them in International isle almost in every grocery store)

2. Ground beef – 2 pounds ( I prefer veal, but actually you can make with beef and even with turkey)

3.Onion (2 medium or 1 big)

4.Rice – 1 cup

5. Egg – 1

6. Tomato paste – 3 tbsp

7. Coriander, parsley – finely chopped

8. Dried basil – 1 tbsp

9. Butter – melted

10. Salt, black and red pepper.

Ok, list of ingredients long, but when you have them ready, then is not difficult to make a dish itself.

Remove vine leaves from jar and wash them properly in warm water, maybe twice. Sometimes there can be a torn leaf, which you cannot use. Just discard them. Don’t worry, you will still have enough to make your dinner :).

Mix together beef, onion (chopped in food processor), egg, rice, tomato paste, greens and basil. Add salt and pepper ( just a 1 teaspoon of salt, and a pinch of each pepper). Then start adding a cold water, somewhere 3/4 of a cup. The mixture should be soft, but not runny.

Now is the time consuming part 🙂 All you have to do, is keep a leaf on a palm of your hand and put beef mixture in the middle of it. Then try to fold it, first from both sides, then roll over, until the end. Try to make a tight roll. It is not that difficult, but you need a practise.Put rolled leaves in your pot, nicely covering from the walls to the middle. Layer over the layer… You don’t have to put them too tight, because usually rice need more space when it’ cooked.

When you finished, pour over the melted butter, and cover your Dolma with a plate. You need this to keep them on a spot, when the boiling will begin.

Boil the teapot and pour over the dolma, until they all covered and even give 1 inch more.

Put on medium-high heat and cook about 50 minutes- 1 hour. To check if it’s done, take carefully 1 piece, wait until it’s not that hot and try. If rice is cooked , your dolma is ready !!!

Make sure that your dolma always has a water in the pot, if it’s not enough just add a little bit.

Now you need a dressing for dolma.

You will need a plain yogurt (greek will be the best), and couple of cloves of garlic. Just squish garlic and mix with yogurt and it’s done.

The result will be so rewarding, you can’t imagine!!!

Bon Appetite!


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Wordless Wednesday


In Memory of 1.5 million innocent Armenian lives

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April 24 2015 is a 100 year anniversary of Armenian Genocide. Estimated 1.5 million Armenians (women, children, elder people) died in Ottoman Turkey during that planned massacre.

I am not a writer and I am not going to write a long post about the darkest period of my nation. I just feel like many others ( you can say all) descendants  of Genocide survivors I have to bring attention to it. My grandfather was one of 12 siblings. He was the one of two survivors from the whole village… The rest was burned alive in the Church. He was only 12 years old in 1915.

Today the whole civilized world marking that day. Already 20 countries recognize the Armenian Genocide, but not the Turkey. That’s why we not going to forget and not going to stop demanding to recognize it.

Because I am Armenian my blood will always remember that day…

Waiting for Spring…


Dessert for Monday


Happy Easter my blogger friends!!! I haven’t publish long time and decided to start doing that again.

I want to share with you my favorite recipe for Eclairs, or Choux Pastry. It is very yummy pastry which you can made with different fillings (vanilla custard, buttercream, whipped cream etc). For many of you it seems complicated but if you give a try (ok, maybe several tries) you will be rewarded with very yummy result. And most important – you will do it yourself and you will make it with fresh and natural ingredients!

What you will need:

90 gram (3 ounces) unsalted butter
3/4 cup water
1 cup all purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
4 eggs

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. On a parchment paper sift your flour. In a small pot combine together water, butter, salt and sugar.Bring to a boil on a medium-high heat. When butter is completely melted take from the heat and dump sifted flour at once. Start stirring with wooden spoon until everything is incorporated.

Return pot on the stove and continue stirring on a medium heat about 1-2 minutes. Dough will start looking like a ball and walls of the pot will be covered with thin film. It is time to take from the heat.

Next step can be made with a stand mixer or with manual one. Either way, first you have to start mixing on low speed for 2-3 minutes to cool down a dough little bit. Otherwise eggs will be cooked in a very hot dough, right? Then start adding eggs, one on a time. After each addition you have to mix properly until each egg is totally incorporated in a dough. After the last one the dough should start making ribbons and look shiny.

Now it is time to put on a baking sheet. Cover heavy duty baking sheet with parchment paper and secure edges with a dab of dough to keep paper on place. Fill pastry bag with still warm dough with #5 tip. Pipe mounds in your prefered size (1 1/2 inch or smaller ones for a bite size eclairs) about 2 inch apart from each other. Bake for 10-15 minutes (with conventional oven it is usually 12 minutes) until they puffed and start looking gold. Then reduce heat to 350 degree and bake for another 10-12 minutes. You have to keep eye on them all the time especially if you trying first time. After that turn your oven off but keep eclairs in the oven for additional 8-10 minutes to let them dry completely.

Remove and let them cool on the cooling rack. You can start filling them after they are completely cool.

I hope the recipe and encouragement will help somebody to try. And what about you? What is your favorite recipe?eclair2

Eggplant Salad with Mayo and Yogurt Dressing

Hi everybody!

Sometimes you just want to make something new, different. Here in North America, eggplants are not that popular, but back home, in Armenia they are essential part of the diet and we have lots of good recipes for making eggplants.  For those who had not read my previous post, here is the link The Eggplant Story. That was the prelude story for the recipe which I will share with you in this post.

First off all, here is a list what you need:

  1. 3-4 eggplants (Chinese or baby eggplants (5-6, in this case) are better than big ones).
  2. Any of your favorite vegetable oil for frying, I am using Sunflower oil.
  3. 2 gloves of garlic
  4. Mayonnaise and plain yogurt – about 1 cup total, 50/50 each (you also can use just mayo)
  5. Dill (2-3 strings)
  6. Walnuts (the more, the yummier)
  7. Salt, black pepper to taste

Wash your vegetables, and partially peel them as shown on the picture. Some people don’t like the taste of skin, but I think that leaving some of it on adds some texture to the dish. So it is totally up to you, leave it or no.


When your eggplants are ready, put them in a bowl and add salt. Cover and leave for 10-15 minutes. This way a little bitterness of eggplants will wash out. Put your pan on medium-high your, add oil and wait little bit for the oil get hot (but not so hot). Start adding eggplant pieces, squeezing them first, to let juices go. At this stage, you have to be very careful, because the oil is very hot and you can easily burn yourself. Keep for 3-4 minutes each side until golden-brown.

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Next step is preparing your dressing. Chop your dill very fine, walnuts you can chop medium size, so that you can still feel their crunchiness in the salad. Garlic you can put in a squeezer or chop also by hand. Mix together yogurt and mayonnaise in a separate bowl, add a pinch of black pepper and rest (dill, walnuts and garlic).

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As you noticed I didn’t add any salt in this point, because mayo is salty and we put salt in the beginning. After everything is done you can try and see, if salad needs additional salt.

Cover your fried eggplants with the dressing and give it a good stir, trying not to break the pieces. Cover and let stand at least 30 minutes, to absorb all the flavors.


How easy was that? And when you serve this salad with the dinner, your friends will think you spent whole day, making this sophisticating and yummy antipasto.


If you like this recipe and interested in more eggplants recipes, let me know. I will be happy to share with you.

Bon appetite!



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