Cooking with Jola Episode 6: Lachs auf Gemuse mit Reis

This week’s lesson happened on a rainy afternoon, perfect for staying cozy inside and cooking.  Unfortunately my rainy day wasn’t thaaat romantic as first I had to go to school, but luckily that afternoon Jola picked me up at the train so that I didn’t have to walk home in the rain (ohne Regenschirm).

Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 22.44.29First we visited Globus.  Sometimes when Jola picks me up directly afterschool I eat something called a Leberkäse sandwich for lunch. Leberkäse is literally translated, “Liver cheese” but luckily the real thing has nothing to do with liver or cheese as far as I can tell.  It’s more like meat loaf, made from beef and pork.  You can get a Leberkäse at any butcher, meat counter, or metzgerei type of place. I like this because you can go to the butcher to do your shopping and also get a snack. It’s sliced and put on a bun, usually with mustard.  This is a typical grab-n-go kind of sandwich in Franconia.  There aren’t many grab-n-go foods because it doesn’t seem like a grab and go kind of society but there are a few.  Leberkäse is good for this but even better is my favorite Drei im Weckla. Drei im Weckla is easy to find on any corner in Nuremburg, but not so everywhere else.

So we strolled around the grocery store while I munched on my lunch.  We ran into various friends, some of whom I had met before and some not.  As we shopped we discussed what we needed for the evening meal and the rest of the week.

Then we went to Aldi.  At Aldi, Jola showed me which fish is worth buying and which not, she showed me easy, healthy weeknight options that don’t take too long and which ones are fresh and not, etc.  This was fun and interesting.  Aldi here in Germany sells lots of things beside groceries, especially holiday decor, and household items.  Sometimes they sell plants and have really nice deals on house gadgets.  For example, I was racing around a department store this weekend desperately looking for a meat thermometer to no avail and then on Monday, Aldi featured them as a special. What luck! So, with many more hours of grocery shopping under our belts than usual, we headed home to start on dinner.

This week was not typically Franconian fare, it was purely Jola. Salmon with vegetables and cream sauce (Lachs auf Gemuse) served with Curry Rice. First you make the vegetable cream sauce.  Ingredients include, 2 leeks, 3 bell peppers, 1 onion.  These are all finely chopped and sauteed in a pan with margarine, salt, pepper, and herbs de provence, maybe a bit of water if necessary. They are cooked until very soft, then add one creme fraiche and 2 small containers of cream. Stirring and then adding a little of Jola’s favorite spice flavor enhancing mixture to taste. Let it come to a boil but not a very strong one.

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Next slice the skin off the Salmon. Sprinkle lemon juice, and pepper on the fish. Then add fish to the vegetable mix, carefully submerging it in the vegetable cream sauce. It takes 10 minutes or so for the fish to cook in the sauce.

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In the meantime boil Jasmine rice.  Maybe I am a rice amateur (Anfänger) But for Jasmine rice, Jola boils it in 2.5 times the water to rice for about 10 minutes.  She doesn’t cover it and she stirs it.  Then when there is still water left in the pot and it looks kind of soupy, but the rice is soft, she puts it into a strainer and runs it under warm/hot water.  When it’s done, it’s perfect. It’s not sticky, it’s not dry, and all the individual pieces have just the right texture.  It’s amazing! Then she sprinkles curry powder over the rice and serves it on the plate with the Lachs and Gemuse. This meal was probably our most simple thus far. Yet, it was full of flavor.

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Jola sent me home with plenty of left overs for the next day and as usual we were too full for dessert.

 

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