The (Easter) egg came first / Vienna’s Easter Markets

I haven’t seen as many eggs within the span of two days as I did at the Easter markets in Vienna last weekend. Mr.A and I were in the beautiful Austrian capital, walking around town, hopping on and off the trams, and strolling in and out of its many cozy markets showcasing local crafts and delicacies, among plump fluffy rabbits, cocky roosters and an immense collection of gorgeously decorated eggs. By the end of it we’d seen eggs made of wood, wax and glass, eggs small enough to hold in ones palm to those towering high above my height, eggs dipped in mild vegetable dyes to those bedecked in gilded pearls, dainty crochet jackets or mini oil paintings, and honestly, every other kind of Easter egg in between!

Try this tuna

My experiment with tuna patties turned out to be a big hit with Mr.A the other day. And I am being totally modest when I say I agreed with him 😉 Let me share the recipe with you, too, and then you can decide if this is worth trying…

What you’ll need:

  • 1 can flaked tuna, drained of liquid as far as possible (I had the kind that is in oil, though water would do just fine)
  • 1 medium sized potato, boiled
  • 1 medium sized carrot, boiled
  • ½ cup spinach (I had fresh baby spinach leaves, but thawed from frozen would make no difference)
  • 1 egg
  • 6 tsp semolina grains (you could use flour as an alternative to bind the mixture together)
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 tsp garam masala (optional)
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • red chili powder, to taste (you could replace this with fresh green chili, finely chopped)

How to make the patties:

  • Mash together all the ingredients except the semolina in a single bowl, adding them in any order. You could use a food processor to do this job for you, but I used just my hands. Some people find it messy to work their food with their hands, but being Indian I am used to eating with my hands, so this was no problem at all!
  • When you have a composite mass, start adding the semolina to bind everything together. Add as much or as little semolina as you would need to be able to roll small balls of the mixture. You can roll the balls to any size you prefer.
  • Place each ball on a baking sheet and press down to form a patty. Continue till you have exhausted the mixture and have a neat array of patties on your baking sheet.
  • Pop the baking sheet into the refrigerator for about ½ an hour to make them a bit firmer. This helps in handling them while frying when you flip them on the pan.
  • Once you have waited out the ½ hour, bring out as many as you want to eat right then and shallow fry over a medium heat. Flip them over till both sides are crispy.
  • You could also deep fry them, but I prefer the lesser devil 😉
  • Enjoy with some ketchup or hot sauce!
  • The rest of the patties (if you still have any in the fridge) can go into the freezer for another happy meal.

 

Mushroom-shallot-egg rolls

Egg rolls are one of my go-to options when I am a bit stiff on time. I usually have a stash of eggs and tortillas almost all the time. My mom used to prepare the tortillas herself with her home-made dough but I take the easier route. Maybe one day I’ll try to make it all by myself and share the recipe. But for now, i’ll stick with the tortillas. I prefer the wholemeal variety because, well, I just do.

What you need:

  • 1 tortilla per roll
  • 1 egg per roll
  • 1 tsp oil per roll, or less if you have a non-stick pan
  • 1 tbs oil to fry shallots & mushrooms
  • 1 cup mushrooms, any kind, chopped up roughly. I used button mushrooms.
  • 1 cup shallots, chopped up roughly.
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • a dash of milk or cream
  • any sauces of your choice

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For the filling, fry the shallots and mushrooms in oil till the mushrooms have let off the water. Add a bit of salt & pepper, but take care because we will be adding these to the egg base as well. You wouldn’t want overly salty rolls, that would be a bummer. Keep aside.

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I usually beat up the eggs with a dash of milk, say 2 tbs, and salt & pepper. It just seems to mix well with together and gives it a flowy consistency. Also, if the eggs are small, it helps make the base bigger!

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Heat oil in a pan big enough to hold the tortillas without folding up the edges. Pour in the egg mix when pan is hot. Swirl around so that the egg base is more or less roundish. When the egg begins to set, lay down the tortilla and press down slightly with your fingers (or a spatula, if too hot) so that the tortilla kinda fuses with the egg. Once the egg has cooked enough, flip it over to heat up the tortilla-side of the base. This doesn’t need much longer than 30 secs, but if you like a crispy roll like my husband, then you might just want to stay put up to a minute on this side. Take the roll off the pan and lay it down on a plate, egg-side facing up.

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Now we roll up the roll. First smear a little bit of your choicest sauces on the roll. I used tomato ketchup for this one, but you can add mustard, jalapeno, chilli or even tabasco, if you like. Add the mushroom-shallot mix and fold over the edges.

Plate up! Eat up!