22/02/2015

BANANA CUPCAKES WITH CHOCOLATE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING


I prefer my cream cheese frosted cupcakes in mini size. The perfect cake vs. frosting proportion, you know.

To reach the same proportion, using a bigger cupcake, the size of the whole thing gets quite monstrous. Gooey fingers, widely opened jaws, but still, frosting on the nose. Not a very pretty thing to eat.

The lil’ ones are more adorable too, in their handy bite-size kind of way.

Plus, those you can eat more than just one.


BANANA CUPCAKES WITH CHOCOLATE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
ca. 16 pcs (or ca. 30 of the mini ones)

100g butter
2 dl sugar
2 eggs
3 dl flour
1 tl vanilla sugar
1 tl baking soda
1/2 tl cinnamon
1/2 dl cream
2 bananas
  1. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until creamy & light. Beat in eggs, one at a time. 
  2. Add the together mixed dry ingredients, mashed bananas and cream.
  3. Divide the batter to muffin tin holes and bake in 150°C for 30 minutes (miniature ones need less time, ca 15 min).
Frosting:
60g butter (room temperature)
5 dl confectioners sugar
1 tl vanilla sugar
0,5 dl cocoa powder
100 g cream cheese
1 tbsp coffee (strong)
  1. Beat all ingredients together with electric mixer until smooth. 
  2. Spread frosting on cooled cupcakes and garnish if you like.

10/02/2015

SPIS
- RESTAURANT OF THE YEAR 2015

The Spis crew obviously liked the other photographer more

On my to-go-to list there are several restaurants that always return to the list, although I've visited them multiple times already. Then there are restaurants, that just stick to the list, but which I never seem to actually reach.

Spis is one from the second group. Since three years it’s been serving Nordic, mainly around vegetables based menus and I’ve heard many wows from people who have visited the tiny restaurant on Kasarmikatu.


Today they’ve been nominated as the Restaurant of the Year 2015 by The Finnish Gastronomic Society. A nomination which tends to fill the reservation books for months. And with Spis’ 18 seats I’m sure they’ll have a busy year ahead.

Sommelier & Chef of Chef & Sommelier

Johan Borgar, the sommelier of the 2013 Restaurant of the Year, Michelin awarded Chef & Sommelier, complimented the Gastronomic Society on their excellent choice and named Spis as one of his true favourites in the city. Just like Chef & Sommelier, Spis is managed and hosted by its owners. And to me that’s something that definitely adds to the feeling. The kind of homey and welcoming feeling, which can only do good for a restaurant.

I hope Spis can be striked off my to-go-to list soon. Or to be more precise, let’s hope Spis will soon move to the group mentioned first: Always reappearing on the list.


SPIS
Kasarmikatu 26


07/02/2015

BIER-BIER & WINE


I walked to the bar with a good friend of mine, both giggling. "Te-hee, we don't like beer, te-hee. We came for a wine, te-hee, or for a beer that doesn't taste like beer. Te-he-he-hee..."

The almost non-beer like lambic, the pro behind the bar offered us to taste, tasted still tiny bit too beerly for us, so we were advised to find the wines on page six or seven on the drink menu. Finally on page eight or nine we found the whites, reds and sparklings.


Bier-bier beer bar was opened just two weeks ago. And without visiting practically any of the other beer bars in Helsinki, I can assure you it is the most beautiful one.

Many parts of the old building and the three rooms are protected by the National Board of Antiquities, but with the rest, Joanna Laajisto has done a marvellous job. The dark, perfectly matched colors of the walls, brown leather sofas, brass table tops together with the high ceilings, dark wood and amazing old tile stoves.


Every now and then my husband tries to force me to take a zip of his "really nice" pale ale and wishes he could somehow make me like beer. But I ain't gonna. I hate beer. I just hate it.

But apparently there are quite many who like it. Though the Finns still drink quite a lot of bulky lagers, the microbrewery-artisan-craft-beer-trend has reached our little country and now it's all over. Small brewing companies seem to pop up everywhere, "normal" restaurants and bars are proudly offering a selection of imported and domestic products and trendy, purely in beer specialized bars are born. Like Bier-Bier, or the also recently opened Brewdog. Or the soon to be opened American Craft Beer Bar.


Bier-bier's beer selection is massive. I mean something like over 100 different beers massive. And also the page eight or nine wine list looks fine. Somewhere I read that from the next door restaurant, Grotesk, you can also get something small to eat. Next time I'll find out about that.

And I'm sure the next time will be soon. I think I might have a new favourite bar in town.



BIER-BIER
Erottajankatu 13