Lemon poppy seed Birthday DONUTS..!

Good morning and have a nice week everyone!! Today we celabrate our 3rd birthday with a sweet sweet recipe.. Lemon and poppy seed donuts!

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Baked, not fried, they’re healthier so you can have 2 or 3 without remorse.. 🙂 At first I thought that baked donuts don’t really count as donuts, but they’re just as soft and fluffy!

More sweet (not only donuts) recipes coming soon..

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Ingredients

For the cake donuts:

  • 80gr unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 110gr caster sugar
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
  • 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 185ml milk
  • 500gr self-raising floor, plus extra for dusting
  • a good pinch of fine sea salt
  • 1 tbsp poppy seeds
  • 2 tbsp finely grated lemon zest

To coat:

  • 220gr sugar

For the lemon buttercream:

  • 60gr unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 250gr icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

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photos © chrysoula papagianni

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Grandpa’s cauldron..

Goodmorning from Mount Olympus and grandpa’s cauldron!!

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Last days of tsipouro distillation and below are some important facts about this traditional drink of the greek countryside!

-Tsipouro is the extract obtained from the distillation of pomace (the residue of the wine press), containing a portion of fermented grape juice, not drained.

-Tsipouro, depending on whether it will be flavored with anethole or not, is distinguished in a) tsipouro with aniseed and b) tsipouro without anise.

-According to tradition, the first production of tsipouro was the work of Greek Orthodox monks in the 14th century on Mount Athos in Macedonia, Greece.

-The traditional cauldron was institutionalized by Eleftherios Venizelos around 1920, when permits were given to the Cretans farmers for the traditional raki boilers, in order to have the ability to produce raki from the grapes produced.

-Distillation was always “homemade” and  launched after the grape harvest in late October and had a festive character.

-From 1918 until 1935 were given 15,000 licenses of distillation pot still ownership to wine growers. Since then, there haven’t been given permits to new winegrowers, but anyone who has a cauldron can sell it if he wants. These permits are hard to come by and their price can start from 6,000 euros and reach up to 25,000 and 30,000 euros!

-In 1883, the Greek state establishes the first law on the taxation of alcohol and in 1896 the first official licenses are provided  to produce grape pomace distillate.

-A second distillation is usually performed, in which various other components can be added, such as anise, fennel, cloves, nutmeg and masticha, resulting this specific product to be purer and more aromatic.

-Anise-flavored tsipouro and ouzo have almost identical taste but vary enormously in their method of production.

-Tsipouro, raki and tsikoudia are the same drink. The main difference of tsipouro from tsikoudia or raki, is that raki is single distillated.

-Similar drinks in other countries, are the Cyprus Zivania, the Italian Grappa, Arak of the Middle East, the French Marc and the Serbian Slivovitz.

ρακή < turkish rakı < arabic عرق (araka)

 

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Meanwhile, on the foot of Mount Olympus..

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photos © chrysoula papagianni

Chickpeas on fire..!

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Happy 2nd anniversary..!

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Hi everyone! I just realised that Urbanzip is 2 years old..!

The past 6 months we didn’t post as frequently as in the past, but this “neverending” transitional period makes it almost impossible to dedicate the time we would have liked.. So today i’m posting some pics from a beautiful stroll two days ago in the center of Athens, while I was searching urban planning material for my thesis. Looking forward to my graduation, than i’ll have all the time to explore my colourful city!

Happy anniversary!

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photos © chrysoula papagianni

Xmas mood –> ON!

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Hello everyone! After 2 months of work we finally managed to relax and arrange some things around the house. First thing on the list was to decorate our very first christmas tree! Among old and new ornaments, we made also our own handmade balls and delicious gingerbread cookies that one of our cat totally loves!

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Our cat eating the cookies from the christmas tree. We are now moving most of them on the top of the tree!

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On Saturday it was also Niko’s birthday so some friends came over for drinks and karaoke! I prepared a red velvet cake, but it turned green (!?) so i poured some chocolate over to cover it.

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photos © chrysoula papagianni

Chickpeas..

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Lunch time! What are you cooking? I’m eating again the delicious chickpeas we cooked yesterday with Nikos! A really simple recipe, excluding the part where you have to “remember” to put them in the water from the night before.. I always forget that part!

First we boiled the chickpeas and then we cooked it in the oven, in a hull where we also added onions, fresh oregano from the garden, garlic and spinach leaves. After almost an hour it’s ready and you can add the lemon juice! Bon appetit!

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photos © chrysoula papagianni

Breakfast with a view..

Goodmorning people!
Finally after a tiring summer, I managed to take 2 days off and visit the island of Kea.
Have a nice weekend everyone!

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“Unofficial” Goodbye..

The time has come.. I just left my house in Florence and I’m on my way to Ancona and then to my hometown, Athens.

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This change will be really difficult at first. Of course I’ll miss this amazing city and all the people I’m leaving behind. This is an unofficial goodbye not only because I’m coming back soon for my thesis, but because I intend to visit really often! So beware!
Below some photos from this last week in Florence. Have a nice day people!

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Tuscany part 7: My 28th Birthday at Volpaia!

I woke up this morning intending to share with you some moments from my 28th birthday which was definitely the strangest birthday till now. Why? Well this is the last year or better the last week i’m living in Florence after 8 years of studies. I might have 2 exams left but i’m leaving my house here and I move permanently in Athens. So these last days here are so difficult and emotional for me. So many things to do and no time for doing even the half of them. So this morning I ended up looking photos from my previous birthdays in Florence, so many different people in them, dearest friends, friends of friends, some of them total strangers but all of them people i’ll never forget.

But let’s go back to yesterday. Me Nikos, Robert and Elena went for lunch at Volpaia, an amazing fortified village of medieval origin, situated between Radda in Chianti and Panzano in Chianti. So for lunch we went at Bar Ucci, owned by Paola the most welcoming hostess, she will always find a table one way or another, and her mother Gina in the kitchen, the funniest tuscan lady!

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When we got there the weather was good, then it started raining so we were not able to go for a walk outside the village, but seeing Volpaia only was more than enough! On our way back to Florence the weather changed again so we stopped to take a small walk and enjoy our last moments in magical Tuscany.

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Thanks to Nikos for the photo above! Below my improvised 4 piece birtday cake and some pics from my past birthdays in Florence.

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Two steps closer..

Hello people! Yesterday was the last day at the university with my classmates. We were all day at the university’s department at San Niccolò area for our Architecture and Environment Lab exam, my last exam of a laboratory! After that I have only 2 exams left for my masters degree.. Below some pics on my way, during and after the exam. Have a nice evening!

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photos © chrysoula papagianni

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