Around the Bowl

Soups of the world – Recipes from around the globe & some creations of my own


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Shchi remastered (with Middle-Eastern Meatballs)

I can´t believe that 10 months have gone away since I started this blog! 60 posts later, it’s time to start revisiting some of my favourite recipes, to get creative and add a different twist. Shchi, the classic Russian cabbage soup was one of my first posts and definitely among my favourites! Now that autumn is finally here, some days ago I was really feeling like eating Shchi again, I haven’t cooked it since the first post! But this time, I added some Middle-Eastern style meatballs, and the fusion turned out amazingly well!

I slightly varied the Shchi recipe and the meatballs are of my creation, however you’ll notice a clear Middle-Esatern influence: I prepared them with bulgur, inspired by the traditional Kebbeh, and it just gave them the perfect texture! I think I’ll always use bulgur from now on instead of bread crumbs or flour. A pinch of cinnamon, among other typical spices, is a little secret I’ve been applying to my meatballs since I first saw the delightful movie “A Touch of Spice” (2003), which I highly recommend by the way, every foodie should watch it!

Would you like to try it? It’s a great healthy complete meal to warm up your evenings! and I made Yakisoba with the remaining cabbage, yummy!

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#InstaFood Post – The Ultimate Gourmet Burger

Yes, I’m the kind of person that likes to instagram every delicious piece of  food that I take to my mouth, both home-made or restaurant’s. #Instafood and #FoodPorn are my sort of hashtags.

If it’s a complete recipe (that we first loved at home), it generally makes it to a post, but if it’s something very simple I put together quickly and had turned out great, it makes just a good Instagram material.

However, today, after instagraming the most delicious gourmet burger we have had in ages, I thought it was worth sharing it! Although all we’ve done was drive to the supermarket to buy the ingredients, the cooking involved was minimal, the result was so amazing that I had to share this magical combination with whoever gets to read this blog!

Most of the recipe is actually summarised in the Instagram post, but if you want more details on the ingredients and the making, keep reading!

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Beef Ramen – The Versatile Japanese Soup

Ramen is complex and simple at the same time.
Why complex? Well, If you try to unravel its secrets or to find the definite and true recipe you can go mad on the process; there are as many versions as regions or cooks in Japan and all around the globe! Making the broth from scratch takes a lot of time, ingredients and patience, but that probably might be the key to a good ramen, then it is possible to be as playful as you desire with the toppings and garnishes! By the way, the home-made ramen stock reminds me of the Spanish cocido broth because of its meat cuts and cooking method, it’s interesting to find this connection points between such two different and distant cultures through their cuisine.
And why simple? Because ramen also allows to be simplified and transform into a healthy, delicious and creative dish for the every-day easy to put together meal. I just use a good quality stock and the rest is pure inspiration!
Although I usually choose to go for the extremely simplified version of this soup, I love this guide to Ramen, it provides a lot information classified in a very clarifying way, its like the Ramen encyclopedia!

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Indian Minced Beef Curry

As I’ve already told you, curries of every kind are a regular meal in our home, we love curries!

We usually freeze fish and meat after grocery shopping and once every few weeks we stop buying for a while to use all the frozen stock. This was the case, we had some mince beef that had to be used: I got creative an instead of making hamburgers I went for an Indian inspiration curry. The fact that we had 1 litre of low-fat Greek yogurt in the fridge also contributed to the idea…

It was delicious, and it is very easy to prepare. You can always replace minced beef with any other meat or vegetable protein that you have available.

I invite you to take a look at the recipe!

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Sukiyaki – Japanese Beef Nabemono (Hot Pot)

At home we are big fans of Japanese culture, including food, of course. A couple of years ago while celebrating a birthday in a Japanese restaurant in our area, we discovered Sukiyaki and immediately knew we were going to try it at home and so we did! Is really very easy to prepare once you got the right ingredients.

Sukiyaki is basically a sauce simmered in a hot-pot at the table centre where all the ingredients (beef, tofu, mushrooms and vegetables) are slowly cooked while eating.  Udon are added at the end to soak the rest of the broth.

My approach to it is slightly simplified and I served everything already cooked in a big flat pot at the centre of the table, or sometimes in separates bowls, including the udon. I also add stock to the sauce because we like ours “soupy”

The sauce ingredients are the same you would use in a basic udon soup, check out the recipe Francesca, from SicilySelfies kindly gave me the other day, you’ll find it at the Vietnamese Pho Chay post comments.

Prepare those chopsticks and let’s dig in!

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Hungarian Gulyás (Goulash) – The Stew(ish) Soup

Gulyás (aka Goulash) is the Hungarian most famous dish celebrity and many of us think of it as a stew, however in Hungary it is also considered and served as a soup. In Budapest I had it both ways: it was more stewish in the Christmas street market and in Hungarian typical food restaurants and more soupy in modern cuisine restaurants. Any Hungarian out there to shed some light on the subject?

Gulyás is usually served along with Csipetkes, small pinched noodles made of flour and eggs very common in Hungarian soups and stews, they are very similar to German Spätzles.

I’m very fond of this dish because it was one of the first “ethnic” recipes I discovered and prepared as a teenager; I recall I even made the Csipetkes to go with it from scratch and serve it to my family that always supported me in my cooking adventures.

The key to a tasty Gulyás is a good paprika much more than the beef cut or anything else on the recipe, so arm yourself with your paprika and let’s cook!

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Korean Spicy Beef Soup

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It’s time for a Korean Soup! I’ve got my inspiration for this recipe from Aeri’s Kitchen. I used the common base ingredients in most of her soups and combined them with the ones in my fridge and was really happy with the outcome.

I think is pretty obvious just by taking a look at this blog that I have a taste for Asian food and Korean is not an exception, I love it too!  I’ve been to some random Korean restaurants (outside Korea, which I’ve never been to yet) that I would like to recommend in case you happen to visit or live in any of these cities: The Seoul House Korean Restaurant in Budapest, at the Buda side of the Danube (1011 Budapest Fő utca 8) serves great Korean food with a very attentive service in a very peculiar ambiance decorated with the 1988 Seoul Olympics theme and the Restaurant Coréen Kim in Strasbourg (5, place de l’Hôpital, Strasbourg, 67000) with an excellent varied menu.

Unfortunately I don’t have any Korean restaurant nearby, but luckily there are very generous bloggers out there to help me cook some nice Korean food when I fancy it. In this recipe I used the local veggies available since  I don’t have access to Korean vegetables and mushrooms, but if you do, switch them freely. Also, you can easily make it non-spicy if desired and change the kind of meat according to what you have at hand and even add some noodles.

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