ling style spinach feta rolls served with sweet tomato chutney.

IMG_2030This week has been about eating outside as much as possible in the late Berlin summer…refusing to admit the temperatures are cooling as eating by the river is something I Looooove here!  And about inspiration from Mid Eastern  cuisine from my weekly visit to the Turkish Market on the Maybachufer in Kreuzberg. I love this market, it is colorful, very loud & extremely crowded in the afternoons. The smell from the various stalls selling Turkish snacks like Golzeme or fresh hot corn on the cob just rises up & greets your nose.

I think in the 9 years I have lived here I have been there regularly. One must be in a certain mood, as I said it can be very crowded & the housewives with their shopping trolleys (you know the ones that grannys pull behind them on wheels…can´t recall the english name…)anyway…can be very dangerous when it is crowded. One must watch their toes!!!

There are so many fresh fruit & vegetable stalls (Organic & locally grown ones too) & I love to see all the colorful displays of these delightful fresh goods with the sellers yelling `Angebote, Angebote, Ein kilo Kirschen nur €1.50`english=  `on offer one kilo of cherries for only 1.50 euro`. But I have to say it is the stalls selling fresh dips like hummus, cheese & olives, dried fruit & nuts & turkish flat breads that really catch my eye. There is nothing better than buying a turkish bread with some dips & olives and taking this to the riverside to enjoy for lunch. The market is right beside the edges of the Spree river that runs through Berlin so there is nothing easier.

The market is on Tuesdays and Fridays all year round so if you are in Berlin I totally recommend you check it out. On this weeks excursion there I spotted some `Sigura`which are pastry rolls that look like cigars filled with spinach & feta cheese. This gave me the  idea to make my version of these that I usually do for the next days lunch & of course for my blog post this week.

Just to add there are some fantastic spice stalls there too!

So onto the recipe for my spinach rolls that I totally enjoyed at a park for my lunch the next day in between jobs..

Ling´s Spinach feta rolls

serves 2/ makes 8 rolls

Ingredients:

8 spring roll papers

250g frozen spinach thawed/ or fresh spinach

1 shallot finely chopped

1 small garlic clove finely chopped

2 dessert spoons of sultanas

1/2 tsp dried chili flakes

1/2 tsp  nutmeg

1/2 tsp salt /black ground pepper

50 gr feta cheese.

I use  Asian spring roll papers you will find in your Asian supermarket in the frozen good section as I really like the thinness & how they crisp up when baked without being oily. A little lighter than usual pastry. Usually these rolls are made with a Turkish kind of  Filo Pastry.

Before you begin place your papers from the freezer into the fridge to begin the process of thawing.

To make the mixture thaw the frozen spinach in a sauce pan on a low heat. When thawed place in a strainer.

In a pan heat 1 dessertspoon of olive oil & fry the shallot, garlic, chili & sultanas on a med-low heat until the shallots have softened. Make sure the spinach has drained of any liquid by pressing it heavily with a spoon or something like and add it to the shallot mixture. Cook slightly adding the nutmeg, salt & pepper.

Place in a bowl & allow to cool. When cooled heat the oven at 180 degrees & let the spring roll papers sit to reach room temperature. Crumble the feta into the mixture, combine gently.

Now you are ready to make the rolls! Have a oven tray prepared lined with some baking paper & a small bowl of water to seal the rolls.

On a clean work surface lay out the papers so they are in a diamond shape (photos below)..put 1 dessertspoon of the mixture at the bottom (not too much as they will break open when baking) & begin to roll by folding in the sides & rolling up. Wet your finger with the water & rub the end to seal the roll. Place on the oven tray & brush lightly with olive oil. Bake for 15-20 mins.

Just to add these need to be eaten quite soon after baking as they loose their crispness if left too long. But really they are soooo yummy you will want too eat them ASAP!

 

I serve a fantastic sweet Tomato Chutney with these rolls. I really love chutneys & relishes, they are something I have eaten since childhood as a condiment  with my food. In fact last week a friend brought me back from England a most fabulous Fig Relish that I have been enjoying with crackers.

I always have a big jar of this chutney in the fridge as I find it goes well with so many flavors: Asian, Indian, Mid Eastern , Quiches..EVERYTHING! I found this recipe in Tassajara Cookbook of lunches, picnics & appetizers. The recipe is titled Kamal`s Sweet Tomato Chutney. Thanks Kamal, it is delicious. I have changed the recipe to my version but this was the source.

Sweet Tomato Chutney

Makes about 3 cups

Ingredients:

2 bay leaves torn into pieces

1/4 tsp ground fennel

1/4 tsp garam marsala

4 tomatoes finely chopped

2 garlic cloves chopped

2 tsp grated fresh ginger

1/4 cup raisins

1/4 tsp cayenne

1 cup apple cider vinegar

1 1/2 cups raw sugar

1 1/4 tsp salt

 

Combine tomatoes, garlic, ginger, raisins, cayenne, bay leaves & spices in a pot & cook uncovered over a med- high heat. Stir occasionally for 10-12 mins until liquid is mostly evaporated.

Add the vinegar, salt & sugar. Bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover & simmer for about 20 mins. Let cool & put in a airtight jar, keep it in the fridge.

Thats it!

Weekend! yeah…hopefully you will all enjoy some relaxed time this weekend enjoying some yummy food with wonderful company.

Love Ling.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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