Sunday, January 22, 2012

NAZUNA

Ok, I will. I just no longer cannot. I have to write about places in Berlin. Even though there is already a great deal of expertise in the field, such as the foodie in berlin or nimmersatt, two virtual places I always visit when I don't know where to eat out in Berlin. For quite some time I was thinking that there is no need for another person to comment on Berlin's restaurants. Actually, I still think so, but I have to channel my enthusiam for Nasuna somehow. If not, the extasy over the place will make me implode, ok? 


I had already walked past the place a couple of times before and the foodie in berlin was so lyrical about it,  I just had to go there and check it out.
When I got there at around one on a Saturday, the place was empty which made me so sad. You can see in the store that every little detail is thought through with so much love for the food and the customers. I can get really frustrated if people do not get that and I can even be a cry baby if I see a place where the owners put so much love and hard work into and then it just doesn't pay off because the world is full of idiots who rather eat a doner for 2 euros. 


I ordered a bento box at the desk and sat down by the window, leaving a safety zone between myself and the tiger. Which, it turned out, wasn't really necessary, as he was of the friendly plastic kind, barking at some dog in the street. 


And, as I sat down, people started streaming in. There were always other customers in the store which made my heart fill with happiness because it means that there are other people who enjoy the place.
I was served a bento box filled with typical dishes for the Japanese New Year such as kuromame (sweet black soybeans) and lotus root which, according to the Japanese lady serving me, allows you to see the future through its holes.  I tried and saw my bento box. Yippieayeay, that means lots of great more bento boxes at the place this year!


Every little dish was superb, but the very best was slices of cooked minzed meat, flavored with ginger and crusted with black and white sesame seeds. Unfortunatley, I forgot its name but it was so good that you almost not dare to eat the last bite because then, the pleasure is over. 
Next time, I will also try some of the Japanese sweets and cakes which looked like jewellery in the large showcase. 


And last but not least, a few words on the design of the place. The store was built into an old German butcher's shop which means that you sit surrounded by 1970s tiles with brown onions on them. 


The way they designed the furniture and the desk into this store is in lovely contrast, and at the same time not screaming "design" into your face. It's not meant to be hip, cool, look-at-our-vintage-style-like. It simply is executed to perfection, doesn't make you feel like you, the ordinary customer, is destroying the whole design concept and therefore should leave rather sooner than later. If I will ever open a restaurant, café or store, I can just hope that I will have such a lucky hand when it comes to the interior design. 



Oh, and at 7,50 Euros, the bentobox is such a bargain!!

Nazuna
Danziger Str. 65
10435 Berlin


And while you are there, will you please check out the house to the right of Nazuna? And tell me how the top floor looks like? And, if you know the person living there, will you let him or her know that I would love to see the apartment from the inside? I mean, it must feel like living inside a ship with all those portholes...

copyright of all photos j.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Happy Easter

It's been a while. Hello back. Happy new year and happy Easter, just in case. But then, I have so many things in the pipeline, I WILL be back before Easter. And I also will post a recipe soon (noticed just the other day that there have been a lot of recipe-free posts lately). I will share the deluxe monday lunch box recipe with you, and also the classic carrot cake with cream cheese frosting cupcake recipe. I will let you know all about my new Japanese Deli sanctuary. I will also share the culinary findings of my pre-christmassy-trip to Copenhagen. But before all that, I will share some Christmas-food pictures with you. 
We had so much food it makes me dizzy just thinking about it. I will share two dinners with you here. Honest as I am, I will not claim that I stood in the kitchen. What you will see now is my Mom's oeuvre.


It has become a tradition in our family to have roast venison on the 26th which is my grandmother's birthday and when she was still alive, my Mom always prepared her favorite dish. We kept the tradition alive because it is the perfect dish for christmas: greasy and tasty, a good basis for an afternoon nap on the couch. We usually have it with Semmelknödel, caramelized chestnuts (the best!!!!), lingonberry-jam, pears, and a sauce mounted with crème fraîche. Did I mention that my Mom is the best?
 
 

Another very traditional Christmas dinner in our family is Tafelspitz, though none of us comes from Austria. We hadn't had it in the last couple of years so this year, upon my request, we brought it back on the menu! The meat, which is boiled in broth can sometimes be on the dry side, but this year's piece was cooked to perfection! Extremely tender meat with lots of different side dishes, what more can you ask for? I think what makes me love Tafelspitz so much are these side dishes, which are like a bouquet of different flavors: you have cold and fresh cucumber salad, boiled potatoes, spicy and creamy horse radish sauce, cold sweet and sour cucumbers (this time, homemade by my aunt) and again, lingon berry sauce (which I swear we don't eat with every dish, this is just a coincidence)!

 
 copyright of all photos j.

I don't know about you, but when I look at the photos, I can't wait for it to be Christmas again!