Feliz cumpleaños! 2018 is the 10th anniversary of Private Cooking

Anniversary Logo Private Cooking on Mallorca

Feliz cumpleaños! 2018 we celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Private Cooking!

In June 2008 I officially became my own boss, by registering as an “Autonomo” in Spain. The weeks before getting the necessary steps with local authorities done, I brainstormed in my little home in Deia, where I lived at that time, about my professional future. Chef Dorothea Waydsch from Flavourhouse in Sóller was the one who inspired me most at that time and who actually gave me the idea to offer a private chef service for villa holiday makers on Mallorca. Maybe right now, 10 years ago, I was thinking about the name I was going to give the “baby”, or I was writing down menu ideas and calculating prices. I can say for sure, that it was no business plan, that I was laying out. There never was one, I simply had the idea and the gut feeling, that it’s going to be successful.

One more reason to be proud of how far Private Cooking has come, right? I am sitting here right now, writing a blog post about the 10th Anniversary! The special edition of the Private Cooking logo was designed by Studio Botschaft in Munich and is my birthday gift to myself 🙂 

Digged out of the photo archive…

Caroline Fabian anniversary Private Cooking

Chef Caroline Fabian

Anniversary of Private Cooking on Mallorca

Housewarming party 2008

My first big event!

A housewarming party in Sóller with 30 guests was my first big job. As I am not a catering company, I only cooked (and still do) for events, when it’s possible to use the kitchen on site for preparations and finishing of the menu. As you can see on the photos, Private Cooking had no corporate identity whatsoever in the beginning. I had some aprons and of course my chef’s jacket, but that was it. This will change in 2009! I will tell you about it in one of my next blog posts.

On one of the photos you can see my best friends Ali, who was visiting Mallorca in summer and who happens to be a great waitress and event manager. As a matter of cause, she helped me on my event.  I can proudly say, that she will not be the only one of my friends, who is going to play a role in the development of Private Cooking. The support of friends and family runs like a golden thread through the success story of Private Cooking. That, and my naturally give passion for what I do, makes it a very personal success story.

The menu of the housewarming party was:

Chilled melon soup with crispy Serrano chips

Risotto with summer vegetables and cured salmon

Parfait of Sóller oranges with avocado mousse and candied fruit

 

Next time I will tell you about the year 2009, when a first logo comes a long, as well as the person who will play the most important role in the future. In my private life as well as behind the scenes of Private Cooking. 

Thank you for following and being a part of this! 

 

Chef Caroline Fabian

 

How to make homemade limoncello / Private Cooking recipe

How to make limoncello

How to make homemade limoncello 

For a wedding on Majorca, I was asked by the couple for a nice idea for a wedding favor. It was supposed to be something to relate to the island, something natural, something the guests could take home. One look into my garden and I suggested to make Limoncello from our wonderful  lemons. Done! My little bottles with the yellow liqueur were tied up in a tree in the garden of the wedding villa with the names of the male guests, together with small “Flor de sal” boxes for the female guests. 

Now, Limoncello is really not difficult to make. It just needs some tasteful, completely organic lemons and some weeks of patience. My Limoncello turns out so good because I leave the alcohol enough time to absorb the flavor and the colour of the lemon peel. 

For Mallorca residents, who have a lemon tree in their garden and don’t know where to go with all the fruits – the Limoncello is a great way, at least to make use of 6 to 8 more lemons! 

How to make limoncello Limoncello ingredientsFor my Limoncello recipe you need:

700 ml Vodka 

300 ml 96 %  alcohol (to be purchased in pharmacies)

6 to 8 organic lemons, best picked fresh from the tree

A jar

3 to 4 weeks of patience

Approximately 800 ml to 1 liter of simple sirup 

Small bottles

Fine metal strainer and a tea filter

Part 1: Peel the lemon skins with a fine peeler, making sure, that none of the with part of the skin stays on it. Put the skin pieces into a jar and fill it up with the alcohol. Close it properly and store it in a dark, cool place for at least 3, even 4 weeks. 

Lemon peel in alcohol on day one

Lemon peel in alcohol after 4 weeks

When you are ready to finish the Limoncello, you need a few small bottles or even only  one big one, if you are just producing it for you at home and not as a give away. Prepare simple sirup by bringing 500 g of white sugar and 500 ml of water to a boil and let it simmer for one minute. Cool down the simple sirup till cold.

Strain the lemon – alcohol through a metal strainer or fine colander. With my last mix I had 800 ml of lemon infused alcohol. Quite a bit of the liquid evaporated. You can avoid evaporation by using a jar that fits just the right quantity, my jar was too big (see photo).

Once the simple sirup is cold (a good idea is also to prepare it the day before) and added to the alcohol, it becomes cloudy. Now I pour the Limoncello through a tea filter, so all eventual particles are filtered out. 

 

How to make limoncello

lemon infused alcohol (left) and simple sirup (right)

 

mixing lemon infused alcohol with simple sirup

 

I find a 1:1 proportion of simple sirup and alcohol too sweet, so I mix one litre of lemon infused alcohol with 800 ml of simple sirup. If you add more simple sirup or a little bit less, is up to taste. 

Now, fill your bottles and leave the resting in the fridge for one more week before you give them away to your friends or enjoy the Limoncello yourself. 

You can serve it as a digestif after a nice meal, with ice cold sorbets in summer or simply on a cloudy day, when you are at home, missing our wonderful island.

Try it out and enjoy!

Caroline Fabian

Private Cooking

How to make limoncello

Lemon sorbet with a shot of homemade limoncello!

 

 

 

Mediterranean fish recipe / Pescado a la Mallorquina recipe

“Pescado a la Mallorquina” my favorite recipe

One of the many traditional recipes, that I learned to love and cook on Mallorca is the “Pescado a la Mallorquina”. It’s a perfect dish for a Sunday lunch with friends and family and relatively easy to prepare. You can either use a whole fish, preferably a local caught fish with firm meat like a Pargo, Mero, Dentón or Besugo, or fish fillets to make it easier to serve. On top a a bead of potatoes, Swiss chard, spring onions, parsley, tomatoes, pine nuts and raisins the fish is then simply cooked in the oven. Can already imagine the flavours and aromas in the air, when you open the hot oven door? It’s a special pleasure, if the host of the lunch has a stone oven and takes the time to prepare that dish in there. I use fish fillets and pan sear them slowly on the skin, while the bed of veggies is already cooking in the oven. Kind of a “gourmet version”, you don’t risk the fish to be dried out by cooking it too long.

Pescado a la mallorquina (4 people)

4 fish fillets

4 potatoes

1 bunch of spring onions

1 large bunch of swiss chard

4 tomatoes

Parsley, pine nuts, raisins, olive oil, “pimentón” (paprika powder), salt

Wash swiss chard, dry it, cut out the stem and chop the leaves roughly into pieces. Cut the tomatoes into thin slices. In a big bowl marinate the swiss chard with olive oil, salt, “pimentón”, raisins, pine nuts and chopped parsley (all to taste) and add the tomatoes and sliced spring onions. If you do this at first, the mix has enough time to marinate, while you continue with the other preparations.

Peel potatoes and cut them into slices. Turn on the oven at 180 degrees and leave a baking dish inside to heat up. Once the baking dish / tray is hot, add some olive oil, lay out the potato slices, season carefully with salt and let them bake until golden brown and a little bit crispy.

Pull out the baking dish now and add the swiss chard mix on top. Close the oven again and let everything cook until soft.

In the mean time pan sear (or poach if you prefer no fat) the fish fillets slowly on the skin until they are almost done. Put them on top of the veggies and let them cook 5 more minutes in the oven (all timing depends on size of the fish fillet!).

Serve on the tray, sprinkling some good extra virgin olive oil before serving and serve some lemon wedges on the side .

Enjoy!!

Caroline

Private Cooking

Carolines recipe filmed on local television

Llampuga recipe mallorca

 

 

Behind the scenes, the making of “The cucurucho” on IB 3

Llampuga recipe mallorca

Caroline Fabian preparing a recipe for television

In 2012 I was asked by the local TV station IB 3, if I would like to prepare a dish for the viewers of the program “La Mirada”. It was October, Mallorca was in plain “”Llampuga” season, a fish also called “dolphin fish”, that passes the Balearics in autumn every year on its migration path to warmer waters in the pacific. This fine fish should become the protagonist of the recipe and I prepared a tartar of it for the camera. I cut the fresh Llampuga in fine dice, marinated it with fine diced shallots, with Es Verger Olive Oil, lime zest, diced cherry tomatoes, parsley, some fresh chili, “Pimentón de la Vera”, salt and pepper. Then I made a Guacamole and filled it into crispy cone made of Filo-pastry. On top I put the Llampuga tartar and sprinkle some sprouts for decoration. A simple starter or snack to serve with a glass of Cava. Many of my mallorcan friends and providers watched the program on television and the “cucurucho” became a little bit famous! Apparently it was quite unusual to prepare it the way I did, as the traditional recipes are frying the Llampuga or cooking it, for example with lots of red peppers and tomatoes as “Llampuga con Pimientos”. How ever, I was extremely glad, that people were interested in the recipe and nobody noticed, that I was super nervous – the first time being filmed for television….

The location where we filmed is the kitchen of our friends Miquel and Micaela at Bodega Es Verger in Esporles. Of course I used their olive oil, which happens to be one of the best on the island and definitely my favorite. 

Even though the video is in Spanish – have a look, it’s easy to follow the steps of the recipe!