Cobblestone Cooking Music XXX – ’tis That Time of Year


Tarte Tatin

Note: Those three Xs in the title? It’s just a number!😉

And before you go all “We don’t want to hear *beeeep* about Christmas before Halloween” – the season I refer to is the apple season. And MAN, do we have apples this year…!

So, with friends of the house coming for dinner, the theme was “apples”…

  • Madeleine Peyroux, Dance Me To The End Of Love
  • Sanne Salomonsen, Never Dreamed You’d Leave In Summer

Starter: A simple salad – finely cut pointy cabbage, finely cubed apple, very finely cubed ginger. Add some dried cranberries and some hazelnuts, toss with a vinaigrette on apple cider vinegar.

Main course: Roast beef. Ahhh, these cuts in English? Probably sirloin-ish, done as a whole piece and not as steaks. Looks like this.

There is an art to do this. First, salt and sear all over on a pan at full blast. The, put it into a cast iron pot or skillet, add water, onion, whole black pepper corn, a few juniper berries. Use a thermometer! Cook until the center temperature is 55°C – take up, cover lightly and let rest. It’ll easily be half an hour before you’re ready to eat. Fine!

  • Diana Krall, Crazy
  • Rufus Wainwright, Halleluja

Pour the stock from the skillet through a sieve, before serving add some cream and let it get to boiling. Adjust taste to your liking.

Sides? An apple “risotto” – in “” as it was done with bulgur. Boil as instructed and in the mean time cube two apples, slice up an onion, fry these two thing together. Add some white wine and then a bit of chicken stock. Mix in the bulgur and mix in grated Grana Padano and toss in some thinly sliced red onion and some mange tout is you have (I didn’t).

  • Sinne Eeg, Down on West Fuxing Lu
  • Sanne Salomonsen, New York Minute

And pickled apples: split a courgettes (squash / zucchini) and take out the seeds and cube it. Cube a large apple, too. Also cube to red onions and fry them without browning in oil along with some curry (I used green curry). Add the courgette & apple, fry for a few minutes and add a bit of water, white wine vinegar, sugar and salt. Serve rather quickly.

  • Shirley Bassey, Goldfinger
  • Sinne Eeg, Don’t Be So Blue

Now here is where the test comes as to whether you read it all before diving into the kitchen… The day before (at least), make a vanilla parfait with a touch of calvados: Whisk egg yolks with sugar and vanilla to a light frothy mass. In the meantime, bring a 50:50 mix of milk and cream to a boil with the rest of the vanilla pods. Whisk into the egg stuff and let it go back on the heat – but do not let it come to a boil again! (Max 83°C for those in on the details).

  • Larry Carlton, Blues For TJ
  • Elton John, Candle In The Wind

Drop into the ice machine and when it’s properly cold and mixed, transfer to a container and let it freeze until the next day.

Dessert, then. Make a sweet shortcrust pastry dough (if my translation tools serves me well – here’s an example). Peel, decore and cut 3-5 apples into about 8 wedges each, and mix them with some cane sugar. Butter on the pan, arrange the apple wedges there and let them fry for some time until apple juice and sugar starts to become thicker and caramelise a bit.

  • ABBA, Take A Chance On Me
  • Dinah Washington, What A Difference A Day Made

Roll out the pastry, cover the apples and tuck it nicely down along the edges. I poked a few holes in the dough with a sharp knife to let steam get out. Put the pan in the oven at 200°C and bake until done and golden. Take out – remember that that pan is warm! – and turn out on a suitable platter (put the platter on top and flip around then remove the pan). Et voila – tarte tatin.

  • Rickie Lee Jones, Chuck E’s In Love
  • Robbie Williams (feat. Nicole Kidman), Somethin’ Stupid

The whose thing – all of the above – was done from something after five in the afternoon until just after seven. Basically, a three course dinner in a little less than two hours, maybe actually nearer one and a half. (Note: not everything happened in the order written here – you have to optimise your time spending -the tarte tatin, for instance, went in rather early so I could do a lot of the other stuff while that was in the oven…) Not too bad – and came out well, according to the guests🙂

And as to apples – these dishes were all done with Belle de Boskoop. A very good apple for cooking, baking and doing desserts!

Happy cooking!

Photo by me.
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Monday (Motorway) Music™, October 17 – It Could Be Rotterdam…

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..or anywhere. No, in fact not. And due apologies to Beautiful South.

I’m, in fact, in Rotterdam, The Netherlands – at a conference. And the conference center is the next door building to the hotel. Even the dinner I am going to tonight is no more than a 10-15 min walk away. So there are absolutely no motorways involved.

The picture set above is collected over the last two days – Rotterdam is actually a rather photogenic place and the weather, especially yesterday, has been very pleasant.

The music list, in lieu of what was in the car, represents this morning’s “shower and general getting ready to face the day” list, then:

Don’t Bring Me Down – ELO
Summertime Blues – Joan Jett & the Blackhearts
Girl Can Rock – Hilary Duff
Tired Man – The Blue Junction
Livin’ Thing – ELO
Hey Joe (live) – Jimi Hendrix

Photos by me.

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(Monday) Motorway Music™, October 11 – Catching Up on an Off-day



Kept myself a little too busy yesterday for sitting down to write this – and when, finally, in the evening I theoretically had time, I also basically had run out of creative energy. And, to boot, I had no actual photo at hand – so the shot above is a throwback to the wonders of Serengeti from earlier this year.

The tiredness may have related to the start of an acupuncture treatment yesterday (to help with soreness from a beginning osteoarthritis in a wrist). Whenever my trusted acupuncturist starts “fixing me to the mattress” (as she once joked – gasp!) with needles, the system reacts in several ways.

I had actually a Monday topic in mind – that will now wait for another day. But to seed your mind: What was my first concert – and what is the list of bands I have heard live?

(As a side bonus, pushing that topic out will allow me some more time to dig through my brain to try and populate the list…)

The Heart of Rock and Roll – Huey Lewis & The News
The Boy from New York City – Darts
The Ballroom Blitz – Sweet
Missionary Man – Eurythmics
Dressed for Success – Roxette

Photo by me.
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Stages of Autumn

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Monday Motorway Music™, October 3 – Around in the Danish Countryside



Arriving at Århus Havn mid-Monday

Yeah, yeah yeah – I know it’s not Monday anymore. But as the post is about Monday and as Monday was really, like really!, motorway-ish, I’ll stick with the title. And if you pursue it further, I’ll plead artistic freedom. So there!😉

Lots of motorways and even a ferry! Had a meeting in Denmark’s second largest city and, following that, had decided to take the opportunity to drive home via some of my family for a rare opportunity to have a few hours with them.

And Denmark isn’t larger than that – you can go over there and back in a day rather easily. Unless, of course, you remember that Greenland – up and over there, next to the US – is Danish territory as well. Then you’d want more days, surely.

And in the weekend, we had a lovely trip to Agersø, in the middle – more or less – of Denmark: A small island in StorebĂŚlt (Great Belt), the strait that separates the islands of SjĂŚlland (Zealand) and Fyn (Funen). In contrast to most of the rest of Denmark, we had beautiful autumn weather and a generally enjoyable time. And saw cows* with lovely, fuzzy ears🙂


Better Off (Live) – Haim
Honey – Velvet Volume
Rette Mich – Nena
Horny ’98 – Mousse T vs Hot ‘n’ Juicy
Rough Boy – ZZ Top
I Can See Clearly Now – Johnny Nash
La Vie en Rose – Grace Jones
I Touch Myself – Divinyls
Hot Rod Heart – John Fogerty
Last Train to London – ELO

*  Technically cattle as there were bulls as well as cows. And calves and heifers by the look of it. Galloway if you’re the sort that likes to know what breed. And hereby endeth the mooh lecture…

Photos by me.
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After the Rain.


After the tempest
Orange on September sky
Glorious autumn.

Photo by me.
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Monday Motorway Music™, September 26 – Done with Flying Around. For Now.

Bavaria, Germany on an early, sunshiny morning

Three weeks, just four scattered work days in the office, six different locations visited in two major languages… Phew!

I must admit that even if I do truly love travelling and have met both dear colleagues and lots of friendly new people and even caught up online with previous friends along the way – it was vewwy, vewwy good to finally get home after all that.

And it is 19 days until I travel again – not really counting a one-day drive to the other side of the country next week (Denmark isn’t that wide, after all).

Fever – Peggy Lee
More Than A Woman – Angie Stone
Let’s Face the Music And Dance – Diana Krall
Anything Goes – Lady Gaga & Tony Bennett
Dancing In the Dark – Bruce Springsteen
Hot Stuff – Donna Summer

Photo by me.
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A Walk Through The September Garden

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Photos by me.
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Monday Motorway Music™, September 12 – Interlude With Potato



I saw one of these internet memes the other day: “Anything in the world is either a potato or not a potato.” Well – that thing above? Sure is a potato! And doesn’t that post title sound exactly like something one of this world’s big still life painters could have thought up?😉

Back to ordinary life: This is a regular work day. In the office. Wheeee! But – already walking from the car to the front door of “my” building, I was tapping into the SAS app in the process of checking in for my flight tomorrow morning. 17C, emergency exit row seat, check! (you also do check in early, right?)

And, with that –

Amerika – Rammstein
Thunderstruck – AC/DC
(yeah, needed a wake-up this morning, ok?)
Don’t Speak – No Doubt
Crystal Ball – Styx
Go Your Own Way – Fleetwood Mac
Hotblooded – Roxette
Nothin’ But A Good Time – Poison

Photo by me.
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A Misty Morning in August



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