Sourdough pancakes with rose petal jam and clotted cream

Birthday pancakes: sourdough pancakes with rose petal jam and clotted cream

When I’m really lucky, normally at the weekend or during holidays, my husband makes me pancakes for breakfast. It’s my favourite special breakfast treat. I sit at our breakfast bar watching him work, and savouring the warm pancakes as they come out of the pan. My favourite fillings are nutella and various jams, while he likes the traditional English lemon and sugar.

It’s my birthday and I have a day off to do whatever I want, and it feels great. Luxurious. A day like this befits a special breakfast, so I combine two things that I’ve been wanting to try for ages: sourdough pancakes, and rose petal jam with clotted cream. The recipe for the pancakes has been adapted from the Herbert brothers in the Guardian using my wholemeal rye sourdough starter, and the rose petal jam and clotted cream inspiration comes via Claudia Roden’s fantastic Arabesque. The rose petal jam was bought in Istanbul, and has a slightly gummy and addictive texture, and a fragrant rose aroma combined with a touch of sourness. It’s sweet, but not overly so, and perfect for the slight tang of the rye starter. The pancakes turned out to well that I had to make a note of what I did and share them!


Top 10

Freshly made fritule

I’ve been curious about how this blog has been doing in my absence. Here is the list of 10 most popular recipes – ‘of all times’, as WordPress says.

  1. Punjabi green lentil dhal – incredibly easy and incredibly tasty
  2. Stuffed Peppers OR Punjene paprike
  3. Sri Lankan Fish Cutlets (the recipe)
  4. Festive Food from Dalmatia: FRITULE
  5. Nigella’s Penne alla vodka
  6. The aroma of curry leaves. Sri Lankan cooking
  7. Cooking Indian: How to fry onions
  8. My mum’s tomato sauce OR Mamin sug od pomidora
  9. Murgh Masala – Chicken in Onion Tomato Gravy
  10. Barbara’s amazing chicken curry

Eating with the Seasons: DECEMBER Round-up!

This has been a very busy six weeks. I’m looking forward to slowing down a little, taking long restorative walks and spending some quiet time with friends and family. I’m not sure how much time I’ll have for blogging, but I’ll be reading your blogs.

Here is the round-up for Eating with the Seasons: DECEMBER! We have some very interesting entries here, with a Christmassy twist to match the season. Enjoy!


Northern Hemisphere







Corsican Caramelised Apple Tart ~ Lisa at Lisa’s Kitchen (London, Ontario, Canada)

I adore the combination of apples and caramel. Look at this lusciousness! And check this description: “Custard-like, coated in caramel and gooey with apples and their juice.” Leaves me speechless, and with a huge craving for some of this gorgeous tart!



French Apple Tart ~ Priya from Priya’s Easy N Tasty Recipes (Paris, France)

After the Corsican, here comes a French apple tart! Check out Priya’s simple and delicious version!




Spiced Cranberry Raisin Bundt Cake ~ Soma at eCurry (Texas, USA)

I’m very impressed by this moist and spiced cranberry and raisin bundt cake. What a great addition to the festive table!



Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti ~ JZ at Tasty Treats (USA)

Here comes another cranberry treat from the USA!  Who can resist fresh home-baked goods on a cold wintry day, asks JZ. These biscotti are best enjoyed with a warm cup of tea or coffee, and make a wonderful Christmas treat for the ones you love.


Pear (and chestnuts!)


Pear and chestnut crumb cakes ~ Suganya at Tasty Palettes (USA)

Suganya is a big fan of chestnuts, and cooks them regularly. ‘The cakes were very moist and mildly sweet, thanks to the pear and chestnuts’, she says. ‘They also freeze well, making them a perfect snack, any time of the day.’



Pear and Fig Whole Wheat Pancakes ~ Lisa at Lisa’s Kitchen (London, Ontario, Canada)

I love Lisa’s savoury dishes, but she is starting to wow me with her sweets, too.  These pancakes with dried figs and fresh pears are elegant and impressive, and yet really simple to make. The filling is enhanced with a little cinnamon, cloves and orange zest, which I think is a great touch. 





Brussels Sprouts


American Brussels Sprouts with Cream and Nutmeg ~ Catherine at Wheatless Bay (UK)

   Brussels sprouts is one of those vegetables that really does get a lot of bad press, especially around Christmas. But does it really deserve it? Doused in cream, with a sprinkling of nutmeg, they do sound tempting even to a declared Brussels sprouts avoider like myself. So, if you’re planning to inflict the obligatory sprouts on your not-unsuspecting family members this Christmas, why not try Catherine’s recipe for Brussels sprouts with cream and nutmeg?  must admit I do like the sound of this dish, not because of the cream, but because I think this flavour combination really does work.    




Carrot and leek soup ~ Priya at Priya’s Easy N Tasty Recipes (Paris, France)

This simple and healthy soup will warm you up on any cold day.  It looks lovely and creamy, and it’s gently spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg and cumin.



Creamy carrot soup with rose harissa ~ Maninas at Maninas: Food Matters (UK)

I’ve made us a carrot soup this month, too, featuring my farmers’ market finds (carrots only from the above picture). The basic carrot soup recipes comes from the 1977 edition of ‘Mousewood Cookbook’ via Slashfood. I increased the amount of spices, and added the rose harissa and the cheese. Also, I used a mixture of butter and olive oil to cook the onions, because I really like the flavour of this combination. But it’s the harissa that’s the star of the show. It really does transfer the soup to another dimension and gives it soul! Gutsy, interesting, inviting soul. It makes it hot, garlicky, moreish. Rather funky for a carrot soup! I loved it!



Kabocha Squash


Kabocha no nimono ~ Greg at Sippity Sup (California, USA)

Nimono is a cooking style that refers to “the quiet, gentle simmering of food in a flavorful broth.” Kabocha squash lends itself to it beautifully. This is comfort food the Japanese way. Many thanks to Greg for introducing me to it!


Southern Hemisphere






Apple and Blackberry Jam ~ Cathy X at aficionado (Sydney, Australia)

We learn something very interesting from Cathy. Did you know that blackberries are not berries at all?  ‘They are, in fact, an aggregate fruit – a bunch of tiny fruits fused together at the base, unlike real berries including surprisingly, citrus, cucumber and papaya,’ says Cathy. Also, she tells us that using frozen blackberries will cause less streak and make baked goods taste fresher and lighter!




Eating with the Seasons: JANUARY

What will you be cooking in January? Share your seasonal recipes with us!

Let’s eat seasonally!

Join me!




  • Go and find out what’s in season where you live in JANUARY.
  • You can choose: fruit, vegetables, fish, meat.
  • Write a post/text if you are a non-blogger containing a recipe and/or information about your chosen seasonal item. You may post more than one recipe.
  • Post it and email it to me before 15 JANUARY, and I’ll post a round-up in a few days. The plan is to go from 15th to 15th in the month (eventually), so we have some time to enjoy the recipes for dishes that are in season.


To take part:


Please send an e-mail to maninas [DOT] wordpress [AT] yahoo [DOT[ co [DOT] uk including the following information:

  • your name and country (and town if you wish)
  • your seasonal item
  • name & link to your blog
  • name of your post & link to your post
  • one photograph
  • with ‘Eating with the season’ in the subject line of your e-mail
  • & please link to this post.

Eating with the Seasons: NOVEMBER Round-up

Here comes the round-up for Eating with the Seasons: NOVEMBER!







Ricotta cheesecake squares with apples and blueberries ~ Linda at make life sweeter! (The Hague, Netherlands)

Linda over at make life sweeter! is such a talented baker! This tempting treat from her kitchen combines seasonal apples from her best friend’s garden and some homemade blueberry jam, also from her friend’s garden.  (Linda, you’ve got great friends!). ‘The bottom part is a cake layer and the upper part is ricotta cheesecake.’



Roasted Apple Sauce ~ Priya at Priya’s Easy N Tasty Recipes (Paris, France)

While browsing, Priya chanced on an interesting roasted apple sauce flavoured with cloves, cinnamon and lemon juice at Chris’s Mele Cotte ‘s blog. She loved the idea of roasting the apples in the oven and tried it immediately. It did not disappoint!



Apple sauce ~ Divya at Dil Se (Los Angeles,California, USA)

We have another apple sauce recipe from Divya, this time, with cooked apples. She says: “Apple sauce is a puree made from peeled or unpeeled apples with the addition of flavorful spices like cinnamon. It is served as an accompaniment with main courses usually for breakfast like oatmeal, pancakes, muesli etc. and also in baking cookies and cakes.”



Dessert Pizza with Caramelised Apples and Almonds ~ JZ at Tasty treats (Minnesota, USA)

JZ’s first dessert pizza was a resounding success with her family: “The flavors of caramelized apples and almonds blended together to form something amazing! The crust was perfect with a crispy-on-the-outside, chewy-on-the-inside edges, and was a treat by itself because of the glaze brushed on it while baking!! The pizza was not overly sweet and with the apples and glaze was not overwhelming at all, since the dough was not sweetened.” It sure looks great to me!



Spiced apple sauce cake ~ Mandira at Ahaar (Ann Arbor, USA)

Spiced apple sauce cake with apple filling – perfect with some ice-cream! I just looove the sound of this!





Chicken breast in pomegranate sauce ~ Andrea at voće i povrće (Croatia)

At about this time every year, Andrea receives a packet filled with juicy fresh pomegranates, straight from her nan’s garden. Pomegranate is rich in vitamin C and antioxidants, and it’s tough outer layer is worth all the patience and time it takes to reveal the glistening juicy rubies that are its seeds.  They deserve to be made into a special dish, and from Andrea comes a real treat: chicken breast stuffed with emental cheese, oyster mushrooms and Dalmatian prosciutto, with a pomegranate sauce. (Scroll to the end of her post for a recipe in English.)




Wine poached quinces ~ Andrea at Cooking Books (New York, USA)

Andrea tells us that the quince was once a staple in American kitchens before the mass industrialization of our food.  Elizabeth Schneider calls it the “quintessential put-up fruit” because it is so rich in pectin it was a natural candidate for jellies, jams, candies and marmalade.  Also, did you know that the word “marmalade” actually comes from the Portuguese word for quince, which is marmelo? For more fascinating info about quinces and the recipe, check out Andrea’s blog!






Kale @ Wikipedia Commons

Kale Aloo ~ Maninas at Maninas: Food Matters (UK)

I  remembered seeing a recipe for aloo palak (spinach with potatoes) at in the blogosphere recently, and thought kale would be a good substitute for spinach. Good? – It was even better! This is my version of this classic dish. Lightly spiced, with cumin seeds and turmeric, with a background of onions, ginger, garlic and green chilies, allowing the flavour of the potatoes and kale to shine through. It’s a fantastic side dish that I’ll be cooking a lot this autumn and winter! (Photo: Kale @ Wikipedia Commons)





Dum Aloo: Potatoes Simmered in Spices & Coconut Milk ~ Soma at eCurry (Plano, TX, USA)

‘There are some hundreds of ways to make Dum Aloo’, says Soma. ‘In West Bengal, it used to be a must dish served for weddings with “Radhaballavi” (lentil stuffed puri), and I loved the slight & subtle sweet taste of that kind of dum aloo.’ This is a cherished recipe from her mum, which brings a lot of memories.


Pumpkin / Squash


Smoky Squash Bisque ~ Laura at The Spiced Life (SW Ohio, USA)

A perfect winter warmer for the cooler months ahead of us: a gorgeous soup with roast squash or pumpkin, with Mexican flavours of chipotle in adobo sauce, dried Mexican oregano, sour cream and finished off with a squeeze of lime. I just love it! 



Labra ~ Sunita at Sunita’s World (UK)

Labra is a traditional dish from Sunita’s home in Assam, India. This very special dish, apart from accompanying meals at home, it also forms an important part of community feasts , especially during pujas, says Sunita. Labra basically consists of a medley of vegetables, and this is how Sunita and her mum always make it.



Gnocchi di Zucca (Pumpkin gnocchi) ~ Orchidea at Viaggi & Sapori (Sweden)

How good is this! Delicate and tasty pumpkin gnocchi with a simple sauce of extra-virgin olive oil and parmesan, spiced with a shaving of nutmeg. Traditionally, gnocchi are made with potatoes, but this variant of the classic recipe is very popular in Italy during this period of the year, says Orchidea. You can also use pumpkin for making ravioli, risotto and much more, she says.



Red Bean and Squash Soup ~ Lisa at Lisa’s Kitchen (London, Ontario, Canada)

Only just a sight of this pretty chunky soup would brighten up my day, not to mention my lunch, on a cool autumn day! Simple and quick to make, it is flavoured with garlic and dried basil, which complement the mixed veg well.



Pumpkin Sprouted Lentils Soup ~ Priya at Priya’s Easy N Tasty Recipes (Paris, France)

Here is another autumnal treat with pumpkin: Priya’s healthy soup with pumpkin and sprouted lentils will give you energy and warm you up.




A BIG THANK YOU to everyone who took part, and happy cooking! Seasonal, of course! 🙂 See you next month for Eating with the Seasons: DECEMBER



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