One day in a restaurant in Warsaw a waiter recommended black pudding with raspberries as a starter. This combination sounded so exotic that we had to try it. The dish was surprisingly tasty. Such seemingly strange combinations require courage, knowledge and intuition from the chef. Essentially, we can put into a pot or onto a plate anything we want. The combination is not always edible. The real masters of fusion food mix ingredients from different cultures and traditions to make new culinary goodies. Lobster with strawberries, chocolate with chili, vegetables as desserts – some of the combinations are on the menu, but there are as many countries as there are possible combinations. We have to dare to experiment.


Today I would like to share with you my proposal for an unusual combination: salad with figs and white beans in a spicy parsley sauce. I recommend adding colourful cherry tomatoes to balance the floury taste of the beans and the gently sweet taste of the figs. They will be equally beautiful as a decoration on the dish.


Ingredients (for 2 people)
200g of white beans
2 fresh figs
12 cherry tomatoes
a fistful of blueberries
dip:
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon of water
half a chili pepper
2 tablespoons of minced parsley
1 clove of garlic
salt and pepper

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Everyone can see what the weather is like outside. I think the summer has forgotten that it should go on until 21st September. For two weeks - almost without pause - it has been raining and windy, and the temperature doesn't really enthuse. Maybe it should be this way to help pupils at the beginning of the school year. It is difficult to learn when it is sunny outside and the bike and ball are more appealing than books.


Today I would like to propose an almost-autumn fiery soup with white vegetables and pears. The chili pepper and ginger give the soup an interesting flavour and warm us up on rainy afternoons.


Ingredients (for 3 people)
¼ small celery root
10 cm piece of leek (white part)
2 parsley roots
2 cm piece of ginger
2 big pears
2 tablespoons of butter
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
vegetable stock
salt and pepper
half a chili pepper
1 tablespoon of nigella

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The first week of the school year is over. After two months in which the children did nothing, it was the most difficult time of the year. In a while, when the children get used to schoolwork, it should be easier.


In order to sweeten this difficult time, today I prepared some very chocolaty wholemeal muffins. They were dark, with a thick, glossy frosting, and the juicy raspberries looked fabulous, smelled irresistible and tasted even better. They were the best fresh – still hot with melted chocolate inside. In any case, you should try them for yourselves.


Ingredients (10 muffins)
dough
150g of wholemeal flour
3 tablespoons of cocoa
3 tablespoons of oil
130g of brown sugar
140ml of milk
1 egg
1 teaspoon of baking powder
10 pieces of dark chocolate
frosting
50ml of milk
50g of butter
100g of dark chocolate
raspberries

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In my family home mushroom soups were always served with noodles or potatoes. One day I forgot about proper shopping and experimentally I made mushroom soup with barley groats. My children looked at it slightly suspiciously, but the soup was surprisingly tasty.


This time with premeditation I added millet groats to excellent seasonal chanterelle soup . If I have to choose which is better for me: with potatoes, noodles or groats I couldn't decide. They are all great.


Ingredients (4 people)
500g of chanterelles
3 carrots
2 parsley roots
¼ of a small celery root
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons of butter
100g of millet groats

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I think that sometimes everybody is hungry but doesn't know what to eat. We open the fridge and although there is everything inside, we are not in the mood for anything in particular. Salads save the day. You only have to think for a while and with the main ingredients you can prepare a yummy dish. Add egg, beans, chickpeas, or any meat to the salad and you have a rich and equally light and beautiful dish.


Sometimes a combination of ingredients which seemingly don't go together make a yummy and surprising effect. Today I would like to share with you the recipe for a salad with this kind of unusual combination: fruit, pepper, smoked salmon, mozzarella cheese and a spicy sweet-and-sour dip. In my opinion, it tastes heavenly, and you will have to admit it looks beautiful.


Ingredients (for 2 people)

1 yellow pepper
5 strawberries
2 peaches
200g of mozzarella cheese
200g of smoked salmon
peppermint and basil leaves

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We spent the end of this year's holiday in the south of Poland in the neighbourhood of Tarnów. It was not our first time in this region, but it was the first time spent in such an active way. We visited three castles - each one in a different style but worth seeing for different reasons. The most traditional castle with regard to the building and the way of visiting was Nowy Wiśnicz castle. It was particularly remarkable for my son due to the trip using virtual reality goggles. The second castle in Dębno with its unique and tasteful architectural interiors looks very magnificent. According to the legend, in the castle tower next to the ballroom the owner of the castle's daughter was walled up together with her dowry. Apparently, the girl used to have uniquely beautiful golden plaits. In the XX century a skeleton and golden plaits were in fact found, but the treasure had disappeared.


The third castle we saw was Tropszyn, uniquely and picturesquely placed on a rock by the Danube river. The name of the village Wytrzyszczka, which you should look for on the map, may cause a problem not only for foreigners. The castle is actually a reconstruction of a defence fortress from the XII century. The red lines on the walls show the real status of this castle before the renovation was done. Similarly, like in many different such cases at the time, the atmospheric conditions and easily accessible building materials meant that the castle practically ceased to exist. The reconstruction started back in 1993 and is actually still going on. The castle has been accessible for tourists since 2005.


We started the visit from the dungeons and cellars, going through some dark stony corridors. Later we passed a few floors of castle rooms where you can find some exhibitions. In one of them my son found some treasure, which was for him more attractive than the Inka one.

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