18.1.11

Saptamana 2 / Week 2

O noua saptamana a devenit istorie, iar intoarcerea la birou si la tot ceea ce numesc cu oarecare cinism viata “normala” a facut ca intreg concediul si sarbatorile de iarna sa para evenimente demult consumate, pe care la un anumit nivel le jelesc inca! Nu sunt cel mai mare amator al sarbatorilor – daca ar fi sa aleg, Pastele ar fi cu siguranta sarbatoarea mea favorita – insa in 2010 le-am asteptat cu nerabdare pentru ca am avut posibilitatea sa-mi iau un concediu pe care sa-l si simt. In aceasta pauza de 2 saptamani am avut timpul si rabdarea sa aplec mai mult urechea la ceea ce se intampla in jurul meu. Cu siguranta mai mult decat daca as fi fost la birou.
 Mi-am dat seama ca unul dintre reflexele pe care le am de Craciun este sa vad discursul MS Regina Elisabeta a II-a a Marii Britanii. Este o traditie atat de valoroasa, care se pastreaza de pe vremea bunicului reginei, George al V-lea, iar forma sa a evoluat odata cu societatea in care traim, pornind de la radio, si ajungand in zilele noastre la televiziune, Tweeter sau Facebook.
Este cu siguranta relevant un astfel mesaj de sarbatori! Nu doar in zile de criza sau recesiune, ci la “bine si la greu”, in fiecare an. Seful statului trebuie sa fie vizibil, asa precum el trebuie sa fie un simbol pentru fiecare dintre cetateni si sa insumeze acel cumul de valori care ne sunt comune fiecaruia dintre noi, sau la care, cel putin, tindem.
M-a bucurat imens mesajul de Craciun al MS Regele Mihai I. A fost un mesaj din suflet si, mai mult, a fost un mesaj care intruneste, dupa parerea mea, toate acele calitati necesare, de care vorbeam mai sus.
In cateva paragrafe, cu simplitatea, coerenta si eleganta care emana din sinceritate si bun-simt, MS Regele atinge toate acele puncte care simti ca ar trebui atinse cu o asemenea ocazie: familia si valorile sale sunt in centrul mesajului, exista un cuvant bun, de incurajare pentru cei care se incapataneaza sa razbeasca in ciuda tuturor obstacolelor si care reprezinta de fapt coloana vertebrala a acestei tari, se gaseste un cuvant bun si pentru cei mai amarati, un cuvant de mangaiere, un cuvant de apreciere dar si un plan de viitor, ancorat in realitate, o povata, si o nota de optimism.  
As fi tare interesat sa stiu ce reactie au avut sau de ce sentimente au fost incercati cei care au avut posibilitatea sa auda sau sa citeasca acest mesaj. Pentru mine, ca sa rezum, reactia a fost una pozitiva si optimista. Ca cetatean, am simtit ca exista cineva acolo care ma reprezinta si in care pot avea incredere ca va pune intotdeauna interesele celorlati inaintea celor personale! Monarhia este o institutie, care pentru mine – cetatean si platitor de taxe in Romania – este mai relevanta decat oricare alta institutie: Presedentia, Parlamentul etc.
Actualul sef al statului nu se inscrie in lista personalitatilor publice in care am incredere. E trist intr-o oarecare masura, dar credibilitatea sa personala este echivalenta cu cea a administratiei sale, a guvernului si  partidului pe care le sustine si de care este sustinut, a institutiei pe care o reprezinta.
Cata diferenta de atitudine intre Casa Regala si Presedentie, chiar si in vreme de sarbatoare, chiar si daca ne limitam la mesajele de Craciun!
“Statul nu este raspunzator pentru fiecare cetatean…” Cum poate un sef de stat sa afirme o astfel de enormitate, precum a facut-o domnul Basescu?! Fiecare cetatean este indreptatit la protectie din partea Statului, prin Constitutie, iar seful statului ar trebui sa fie garantul acestei realitati!
Regele Mihai I a abdicat, fortat fiind, in mod ilegal, de catre comunisti la 30 decembrie 1947, atunci cand i s-a prezentat alternativa executarii unui numar de studenti anticomunisti. Regele nu si-a putut asuma o astfel de atrocitate, nici ca om si nici ca reprezentant legitim al Statului. Pentru ca Statul pe care inca il reprezenta era raspunzator pentru fiecare roman…




© ASR Principele Radu al Romaniei
MS Regele Mihai I & ASR Principesa Mostenitoare


Ca popor, parem cateodata asemeni unui copil parasit de parinti, care dupa un lung drum de pribegie gaseste niste parinti adoptivi, doar pentru a fi abuzat din nou. Am increderea ca in curand vom renunta la statutul de orfelin in favoarea celui de adult care isi cauta si recunoaste adevaratele modele!
***

Ca orice amator de mancare, m-am gandit ca ar fi preferabil sa echilibrez aceasta a doua postare, care, recunosc, incepe cam sobru (si s-ar putea sa fie un pic grea la stomac J), cu ceva usor, delicat si putin exotic!
Dati-mi oricand o portie din reteta de mai jos impreuna cu ceva "serios" si probabil voi face fata cu brio! J

Spuma de creveti, ou si avocado





Am atacat “problema” pe 4 fronturi:
In primul rand am recunoscut cinstit ca nu am ramekins (forme individuale de sufleu) si ca va trebui sa gasesc o alternativa J.  Am gasit-o: veterana mea forma de chec, pe care cel mai des o folosesc la reteta de cheesecake.
Frontul doi a avut de-a face cu un bain-marie: toata lumea pe care o cunosc se sperie de acest termen! Si eu l-am invatat in State si la inceput mi se parea un mare inconvenient, dar mi-am schimbat parerea cu timpul…
[faceti un efort intr-o zi si puneti un vas de yena deasupra unei oale mici cu apa care fierbe, in care adaugati niste smantana de gatit si ciocolata rupta in patratele mici. Asigurati-va ca fundul vasului de yena nu atinge apa in clocot! Ideea e ca aburii sa ajute procesul… amestecati bine pana se obtine o crema fina de ciocolata, luati de pe foc si scufundati niste capsuni in acest amestec! O sa realizati de ce bain-marie e o idee buna si nu prea complicata J]
Am adaugat in bolul de yena un pachet de gelatina, zeama de la jumatate de lamaie (sfat: alegeti o lamaie potrivita, nu un mamut!) si un sfert de cana de apa fierbinte. Am amestecat serios, dupa care, atunci cand amestecul s-a racit, am adaugat smantana, maioneza, mararul, coaja de la o lamaie si o lingura de Worcestershire sauce [iubesc acest ingredient! in State se spunea ca in compozitie are “tot ce se opreste in sita de la chiuveta” J, dar, sincer, pot sa va spun ca da o savoare deosebita mancarurilor, iar eu nici nu ma gandesc sa fac anumite retete in lipsa acestui ingredient: inclusiv burgers!]


Am fiert bine 4 oua, le-am racit, dupa care le-am decojit si taiat in cubulete. Le-am amestecat cu creveti taiati in 3 si avocado taiat in cuburi mici – frontul nr. 3! [Crevetii sunt fructele de mare pe care le prefer… la noi se gasesc in principiu inghetati. Trebuie tinut minte ca acestia sunt gata fierti daca sunt de culoare roz si ca urmare pot fi folositi direct in retete, fara o pregatite prealabila. In cazul acestei retete, trebuie indepartate cozile, daca acestea exista.]
Frontul 4: am adaugat ouale, crevetii si avocado la compozitia din bain-marie, peste care am adaugat spuma batuta din 2 albusuri si am amestecat. [oricand aveti o reteta care presupune amestecul  ingredientelor cu spuma de albusuri, asigurati-va ca o faceti cu blandete J. Principala misiune a spumei de albusuri e sa faca produsul final sa fie usor si pufos. Daca amestecati vartos, bulele de aer se vor sparge si vor anula principala misiune a spumei.]



Am turnat amestecul obtinut in forma de care va vorbeam la inceput si am introdus-o la frigider pentru cateva ore bune. Dupa ce s-a inchegat bine, am rasturnat totul pe un platou, pe care l-am garnisit cu marar verde, proaspat. E un preparat deosebit, care merge bine alaturi de paine prajita.


Reteta detaliata se afla in “Cartea regala de bucate”, Ed. Curtea Veche, Bucuresti 2010, pag. 188




***

A new week has become history and the return to the office and everything we call, with some cynicism, "normal" life, made the vacation and winter holidays seem long gone-by events, which at some level I still mourn! I am not the biggest fan of holidays - if I were to choose, Easter would definitely be my favorite holiday - but in 2010 I eagerly awaited Christmas because I was able to take a longer leave, which I could actually enjoy. In this two week break I had time and patience to devote more time to what was happening around me. Certainly, more than if I were at work.
 
I realized that one of the reflexes that I have at this time of the year is to see HM Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain’s Christmas speech. It is a very valuable tradition that has survived since the times of the Queen’s grandfather, George V, while its form has evolved with time from the radio, moving on to television, and, in our days Tweeter or Facebook.

Such a message is definitely very relevant at Christmas time! Not just in days of crisis or recession, but in good times and bad, every year. The head of state needs to be visible, just as they need to be a symbol for each citizen and illustrate those values that are common to each of us, or to which we at least aspire.

I thoroughly enjoyed HM King Michael’s Christmas message. It was a heartfelt message and, moreover, it was a message that meets, in my opinion, all those necessary qualities I mentioned above.

In just a few paragraphs, with the simplicity, coherence and elegance that emanates from honesty and common sense, His Majesty the King touched on all those ideas that that one would feel need to be addressed on such an occasion: family and its values are at the heart of the message, there is a good word of encouragement for those who, in spite of all obstacles, are determined to pull through and who, basically, represent the backbone of this country, there is a good word for those less fortunate, a word of comfort, a word of appreciation but also a plan for the future that is anchored in reality, a word of advice and a touch of optimism.
 
I would be quite interested to know the reaction of those who had the possibility to read or hear this message. To summarize, my reaction was positive and optimistic. As a citizen, I feel that there is someone there who I can trust and that will always put public interest before his own! The monarchy is an institution, which for me - a tax paying citizen of Romania - is more relevant than any other institution: the President, the Parliament etc.

The current head of state cannot be included in the list of public figures that I trust. It is sad to a certain extent, but his personal credibility is equivalent to that of his administration, his government and ruling party that he supports and by which he is supported, that of the institution he represents.
 
What a difference in attitude between the Royal House and the presidency, even in times of celebration, even if we limit ourselves to the Christmas messages!

"The state is not responsible for every citizen..." How can a head of state claim such nonsense as Mr. Basescu did? Every citizen is entitled to be protected by the state, by the Constitution, and the head of state should be the guarantor of this reality!

King Michael was illegally forced to abdicate by the communists on December 30th 1947, when he was presented with the alternative of a number of anti-communist students being massacred. The King could not and would not be responsible for such an atrocity, not as a man nor as a legitimate representative of the State. For the State which he represented was still responsible for each and every Romanian...

As a people we sometimes seem like an abandoned child, who after a long time manages to find adoptive parents, only to be abused yet again. I have faith that soon enough we will abandon this orphan status for that of an adult who recognizes the genuine role models in their life!


As any food lover, I thought it would be preferable to balance this second post, which, I admit, started on a more sober note (and, as a consequence, might be a little harder to stomach) with something more delicate and a little exotic!

Give me a portion of the below recipe and I am sure I can successfully face any obstacle!


Cold soufflé of prawn, egg & avocado

I approached the "problem" on four levels:

Firstly, I admitted that I do not own ramekins and will have to find an alternative. I found it in my veteran cake form, which I use more often for my cheesecake recipe.

The second level had to do with a bain-marie: I know most people are scared of this term! I first heard of it in the U.S. and at first it seemed such a great inconvenience, but I changed my mind in the mean time… [make an effort one day and place a Pyrex bowl over a pot  with a little boiling water, put some double cream and chocolate in the bowl. Make sure the bottom of the Pyrex bowl does not touch the boiling water! The idea is that the steam will help the whole process... mix the ingredients well until a smooth chocolate cream is obtained, remove from the heat and dip some strawberries in the mix! You will realize what a bain-marie is a good idea and not too complicated]

I put a package of white, flavorless gelatin in a Pyrex bowl to which I added the juice from half a lemon (tip: choose an average lemon, not a mammoth!) and a quarter cup of hot water. I mixed these three ingredients thoroughly, then, when the mixture cooled down, I added sour cream, mayonnaise, freshly chopped dill, lemon zest and a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce.

Next I chopped 4 hard boiled eggs and mixed them with the chopped prawns and avocado – this was level 3. If the prawns have tails, make sure to remove them!
 
Level 4: I added the eggs, prawn and avocado mixture to the composition obtained in the bain-marie, over which I added 2 egg whites that were whipped until they formed stiff peaks. [anytime you are doing a recipe that involves mixing ingredients with egg whites that were whipped to form stiff peaks, make sure you do it gently. The main idea is to have a finished dish that is light and fluffy and as such you need to save as many of those air bubbles as possible!]

I poured the fluffy mixture thus obtained in the form that I was telling you about previously and I put it in the refrigerator for several hours. Once it was stiff enough, I turned it on to a platter, which I garnished with fresh dill. This is an excellent recipe that goes well with toast.
 
The detailed recipe can be found in “Cartea regala de bucate”, Ed. Curtea Veche, Bucuresti 2010, pag. 188.

2 comentarii:

  1. Super tare imi curg balele...:))
    Dar eu daca ma apucam de asta pierdeam ca Hitler la frontul 2 sau 3 (no la alegere...).

    RăspundețiȘtergere