Final Post

July 1, 2008

Spanish was the winner of this challenge – not only in the football, but the cruisine. Maybe we were lucky in the recipes we found but they seem to eat a wide variety of dishes. In contrast, we started to get a little tired of the meat, potatoes and cabbage combination that dominate the cuisines of many European countries we tried.

Two dishes stood out as ones we’ll definely have again – the Spanish Chicken in Garlic Sauce and the Dutch Beef stew with beer and dumplings.

The Chicken and Sweet Potato Stew received the wooden spoon – mainly because the sweet potato was just too dominant. Big M dislikes sweet potato so perhaps it wasn’t the best choice for Netherlands.

I’m pleased to say we covered all countries plates. We had only one makeup dish as a result of Italy not playing as well as we thought they would – so we cooked it on an off night. However, we didn’t do so well on the cups. We effectively missed Turkey and Romania. We could have easily had vodka for Russia or Sweden, but we already had some in the cupboard and ended up cheating on both of these. We had one non-alcholic cup and for our next football challenge we should probably aim for a few less beers!

Last time when we did the challenge I had borrowed out a large pile of cookbooks from the local library. This time we decided to primarily go with recipes our own cookbooks (Italy, France, Spain and Switzerland) and online. The trouble with online recipes is that you really do not know how authentic they are and we were trying to genuinely capture the essense of the country. In some cases I choose a recipe because it had a photo! Next time it’ll be back to the books.

There was a huge improvement in the photos this time – we had a new camera (digital SLR), tripod, a basic lighting setup. The grey card kindly borrowed from Luzette was appreciated.

See you back over at Gustoso.

Kick off….

June 7, 2008

This year we are back – hopefully a little better prepared this time.

Once again, we are aiming to eat one dish or drink originating from one of the countries playing in The UEFA Euro Cup on the day of their match. We aim to cover all countries.

We have developed a little bit of strategy to try to cover all teams – if you were following our progress with The World Cup and Plate we did miss out on trying a few! We’ve lined up recipes for each of the countries, although please send us your suggestions for any Russian recipes you have tried. If we’re not too tired you might even get a recipe or two out of us.

We have visited a number of different delis and liquor shops to collect different ingredients and european products.

We’re also using a new digital SLR camera and a tripod. BigM has set up a temporary light box. So fingers crossed the photos will be better.

If you want a short humorous round up of all the teams playing visit Catflap‘s well designed online magazine.

Things will be a little quiet this year with England missing out in the qualifiers. So we’ll be cheering on Switzerland and Italy, but once again, we’ll try not to be biased.

<Blow whistle>…..