Monday, December 24, 2012



 its christmas time!

my dear friends. it was a pleasure, that so any people still checked out my blog, even though the last posts were really old.
for me its a fascinating thought that so many people read my words and ideas. so please continue and share, if you like it.
now the long desired christmastime arrived. i love christmas. even though sometimes I'm sad, that the unbelievable  excitement and extraordinary joy is not the same as in my childhood. i remember christmas in my family as a time of miracles and wonder, the house filled with the fragrance and lights of the holy night.
so i do my best to bring this feeling to my family. my boys are in an age, where all the traditions are probably a little boring and embarrassing. but our daughter amelie, she is eleven, is so excited that she doesn't sleep well since a view nights. so she just told me, that the 23 th of december is the worst day of the year. well.
now i have to come to a short but very sad story. yesterday i had a deep personal crisis and i had to make a far-reaching decision.  do i have to buy a second christmas tree? i mean- a better one?
the beginning of the story: i sent my lovely husband jan to buy a christmas tree. he took my sweet daughter amelie and our good friend uli ( thanks uli, you didn't help in this situation).  big mistake. biiiiig mistake.
end of story: we have quite a special tree. in a negative sense.
some quotes:
benedikt, our younger son: its not too bad! (he has a very lovely personality!) 
jonathan, our older son: looks like a dying tree!
elias, jonathans lovely friend: this is a really ugly tree.
liz, a good friend: haaahahaaaahaaaa!
so. thats it. i had to write this. my dearest husband needed some punishment at least. (by the way, he still tries to convince me, that this tree is really gorgeous.) he is unbelievable. 
so here are some pictures, some images of our christmastime.
i was expecting to have the most beautiful tree to show on the blog. it didn't work out. what else do i expect? some nice gifts, of course, nothing big. i expect to have some peaceful time with my beloved family, good food, stories and laughter. i expect to bring some joy to the kids with some gifts. singing some christmas carols and hearing the christmas story would be nice. thinking of the birth of our lord jesus, the reason for all the expectation and excitement.
may you have a blessed and peaceful christmas time. expect the best time of the year, but be flexible and gracious enough to be happy with the imperfect.
merry christmas!

doing christmas mail

Sunday, December 9, 2012



my dear friends. its been a extremely long time since my last post. I'm sorry for that. it was a time of difficulties and little joys, a time that took my full energy and attention. I'm still completely in it, but, let me say the truth, i missed doing my blog and i just want to do fun and steadfast things. so, I'm back for good and I'm looking forward hearing from you as well.
the topic today is advent. for some of you it may not be a term that you are really familiar with.  in germany we call the time before christmas "advent". it is an old latin word and means "arrival". so advent is the time when we prepare for the arrival of our lord jesus. and thats christmas, right? birthday party!  so lets prepare. 
i do it, of course, the very german way. i love traditions, as long as it is filled with meaning and joy. 
last week was the christmasmarket in our hometown herrnhut. it was the perfect weather (usually it rains like nothing good on this day. not this year thought!). it snowed the day before and everything is white and looks like it should. the sun was shining, the sky was blue and it was just the right temperature. my dear kids amelie and benedikt and a good friend joined me, and it was a lovely day.  we ate a lot of nice christmas market food, found our way through the masses of people, had some interesting parking experiences and very good hot chocolate in a nice cafe. 

at home i just worked a little on my christmas decoration. this year its kind of colorful.  here are some pictures. they are not so great though. maybe i should get a good camera for christmas;-).
what is really important for a nice advent afternoon, are some nice christmas cookies. i made some filled hearts with peanuts. you take 300 gram of white flour, 200g butter, 100g sugar, one or two egg yolks (depends on the size) and the zest of half of an organic lemon. let it process in the kitchen machine or make a dough out of it by hand. don't knead it too long. its ok if its still a little crumbling.
put it into a plastic bag and cool it down in the fridge for an hour. 
roll the dough with a rolling pin and cut out little hearts with a cookie cutter. in half of the cookies cut a little hole. look at the pictures, than you know what i mean. "paint" the cookies with scrambled egg yolk. you can also put some peanuts on the top of them as well.
bake the cookies at about 180 degrees celsius for 6 to 8 minutes. be careful, they get too dark very easy. 
when the cookies are cooled down, fill the cookies with jelly. very good is grape jelly or lemon curd. delicious!
for me its a very refreshing and joyful thing, to sit down in the afternoon, the sun gets down already and i light a candle or two. then a nice cup of tea and cookies and preferable a good book. this sounds, really, its the truth, like heaven on earth. peaceful and comforting.
this is my wish for you for the coming time: peace and comfort. and quite some excitement for what is to come.
blessings, yours ute

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


hello my lovely fellows. welcome again to my blog. as always I'm excited and I'm looking so much forward sharing some thoughts and pictures with you.
so the topic this time is: Apples!
fall has come, and its the right time to write about this special fruit.
i think, at least for us here in germany, apples are the classic type of fruit. before we knew bananas, oranges, kiwi, peaches and pineapples we had apples. recently  i read an article about the eating habits of people in the middle ages here in europe. they, of course, had apples. but they usually never ate them fresh, but only dried. isn't that interesting? i find it interesting.....

i have so many recipes with apples, that i probably have to do two posts about it. i start with a very delicious apple rose cake. it doesn't contain roses but it looks like roses.
you need 500g (2 cups) wheat flour, a little salt, yeast, 100g (ca. 1/2 cup), 150 ml lukewarm milk, a little real vanilla, 60 g (1/8 cup) soft butter. mix everything in a big bowl or use a kitchen machine. knead the dough until nice and smooth. cover it with a clean kitchen towel and put it on a warm place. there should be no cold air coming around the corner. otherwise the dough gets upset and doesn't rise.
take 6-7 sour tasting apples and cut them in small pieces. 
after approx. 45 min roll out the dough. put 5 tablespoons of blackberry jam on the dough, then a handful of walnuts or pecan nuts on the jam, some brown sugar and the apples on top. man, i hope you understand what i mean. but just be creative, you can do it :-). 
roll the whole thing up and cut "roses". put it with the open side up in a baking pan.    
let it sit for another 15 minutes.
heat the oven on 175 degree celsius. please google what that is in fahrenheit. I'm to lazy to do it right now.
bake for about 35 -45 minutes.
when it cooled down, put some powdered sugar on it. looks good, smells good, tastes good. and really german. i hope you like it.

ok, i looked up the temperature, its 345 degree fahrenheit. I'm just too nice, am i? please say yes. or at least think it.

so the second recipe are apple pancakes. make them for a breakfast invitation or a sunday afternoon coffee and cake time. with a nice cup of coffee, or, what i prefer, a very nice cup of tea and its perfect. if you invite some friends, you will win their friendship forever.
you need 8 eggs, 400 g wheat flour, some salt, 1/2 liter milk, 100 g sugar. mix all very well.
let it sit for 20 minutes.
take 4 apples, wash them thoroughly. cut them in quarters, take out the core house (I'm really not sure, that  this is the correct translation. please blame google translator.) 
anyways, cut the apples in a fan shape.
heat up a pan with some butter. put some of the pancake dough in the pan and a apple fan on top. fry it from both sides. serve it fresh out of the pan with some powdered sugar and maple syrup. 

so, to close this post, let me say this: apples are all around my place right now. I'm glad for this season and the many possibilities it brings.
we as a family are in a rather unsure and shaky position. but this is the season for rising hope and light on the horizon. 
in the coming weeks and months my posts will come more seldom and not regularly. but please stay with me and give some comments on my blog. 
its always a highlight for me and my lovely son benedikt, who helps me doing this. 
in this sense,
have a blessed time and looking forward seeing you again soon.
yours ute

Sunday, September 23, 2012


"all pain and all joy comes from love"

i send you many greetings! i was looking forward to write again, actually i was thinking quite a lot about it during the last week.
it was somehow a rough week and this post will be short, but filled with some important confessions and also some yummy recipes. or just one, we will see. 
it was my dear husbands birthday last week thursday. i just thought about that and i realized, how thankful i am to have him. he is really a man of a special kind. and how cool is that, he is mine :-). i do love him. yes.

we had a nice birthday coffee and cake celebration, a typical german tradition. besides some other things,i made an american white chocolate cheesecake- delicious! 
you need 120 grams (about two thirds of a cup) of simple cookies. put them in a plastic bag and crush them into crumbs. melt 70 grams of butter and mix with the cookie crumbs. put it on the bottom of a baking pan and squeeze it with a spoon. you know, make it flat :-).
cool it. melt 300 grams of white chocolate. let it cool down a bit.
take the inside of a vanilla pod, 600 grams of cream cheese, 40grams of powdered sugar and the zests of the peel of an organic orange. mix everything very well and put it on the cookie bottom (o man, this is bad language. i still do my best...) cover with foil and cool the cake for at least four hours.
decorate it with fresh raspberries(or any other berries) and chocolate flakes.
this is so good, you will see.
often, when i bake or cook or decorate  something, my kids would say :"is it for  the blog?!" well, of course i make photos and i might post it or write about it. but the truth is, that i do these things for my family. i really want  them to live in a beautiful and cosy environment. i want them to eat well and healthy and delicious. 
they are probably not aware of it, but they are the real reason for my passion. because they are the biggest treasure i have on earth. a little pathetic, but I'm in this kind of mood right now. 
my dear kids, my dear husband, i love you and i wish you all possible blessings. you are a blessing to me for sure.
to all my friends and readers: peace to you. 
let me hear from you.
yours ute

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


Hello my friends.

Today, i want to do a little nostalgic detour. just recently i thought about cooking some homemade and nice maultaschen. this is a typical, south german dish, from the area, I'm coming from. i don't live there any more since twenty years. oh my..., really, TWENTY YEARS? how old am i???
ok, even though i consider home, where my family is, i still like going to the place i used to call home. the house i grew up in doesn't belong to my parents any more, but they still live, praise God for life, close to my hometown. 
when i visit my parents and my brother and his family, i always pass by our old house. i always feel a little dizzy and strange in this moments.there are also some more tears that need to be cried sometime. time goes by, and it is a bittersweet feeling indeed. there is a loss in whats over and will not come back. good things and difficult things. but there is future ahead we can looking forward to. even though it is unsure what it may bring. but there is a big chance of better and bigger things than we have seen so far.
back to the maultaschen. my grandmother sometimes made them. in my memory it feels like the whole kitchen was completely covered with maultaschen for many days. the whole lives of all family members where concentrated on this special and favorite food and the making of it. ---probably the reality has not a lot in common with this "memory". but, hey, who cares. its a sweet memory and it brings me closer to my childhood. so, its a good thing.
by the way, i have to be thankful to my grandmother not only for the maultaschenmemory, but, besides of many other things,  also for a sense of beauty and creativity. even though her taste was different, i believe i inherited this gift from her. and also some nice bone china, silverware (real silver!!!!) and some table linen. so, thanks, oma! (she sadly passed away nine years ago)
so, back to the maultaschen. be prepared for some work.
first i made a pasta dough with 1kg of wheat flour, 2 teaspoons of salt, eight eggs and 10 tablespoons of water. mix it into a firm and elastic dough and let it rest, covered with plastic, for one hour.

take 1 kg of good quality ground meat, best is mixed pork and beef, but you can always be creative.
defrost a one pound package of spinach. mix it together with two eggs and two tablespoons of breadcrumps under the meat. 
peel and cut one big onion and sauté in some butter.
cut a half pound of ham in small pieces. 
mix everything very well. season with salt, pepper, nutmeg (muskat) and tarragon (estragon).
roll the dough with a rolling pin very thin. then fill it will the meat mix and cover it with dough. look at the pictures, then you see what i mean ;-).
cut the maultaschen. best is to use a pizza cutter.
boil the maultaschen lightly in saltwater for ten minutes. 
you can serve it in a delicious homemade vegetable broth or you can fry it in butter and serve it with any kind of fresh salad. my dear friends, this is how home tastes. yummy.

the decoration of the week: wonderful crocosmias (gladiolen). every two weeks i get a package with surprise flowers. i think i would not have chosen this kind of flowers, but now, I'm really fascinated. don't you think, their beautiful? i do.

be blessed, thanks for reading. please let me know what you think.
looking forward to next week.
yours ute

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The air smells like fall!

This morning, when i walked out of our house (actually its a castle, but i will write about that another day), the sun was shining softly on my face, the wind was blowing a little cool and it smelt, the first time this year, like fall.
to be honest, i love this time of the year. the heat of the summer is past and the cold of the winter is still far away. the colors of the nature are getting more powerful and something new is in the atmosphere. well.
the taste of fall is also one of my favorite. apples, pears, mushrooms, pumpkins. i love that.
so i tried a recipe of a mushroom soup out of a beautiful cookbook written by jamie oliver. and really, it was a revelation. i really never made a mushroom soup before, even though mushrooms are one of my favorites.
 by the way, mushrooms are no vegetable. they are a own kind of plants. and the biggest alive thing on earth is- a mushroom. jaahaa. that is true. its almost the size of a tenth of germany. it grows underneath the earth somewhere in south america.  
back to the soup. take 50 grams of dried porcini mushrooms (steinpilze). put them in a bowl and pour boiling water on it until covered. let it sit for 20 minutes. then take the mushrooms out of the water and cut half if them into small peaces. keep the water.
cut 600 grams of different fresh mushrooms in peaces. cut one onion and two garlic cloves   
into small peaces and sauté it in some hot butter for about five minutes. then put the porcini mushrooms and the mushroom water in the pot. pepper (freshly grounded) and salt it. let boil for twenty minutes, until the liquid is gone. then put the fresh mushrooms and one liter (about 4 cups) of vegetable broth in the pot. let boil for another 20 minutes.
you can blend half of the soup, that gives a creamier taste. stir in 2 tablespoons of cream cheese, best is the italian kind mascarpone. pepper and salt it if needed.
serve it with some fresh squeezed lemon juice. put some of it on the soup and stir in lightly. - tastes like heaven, believe me!
one of the most liked desserts of my family is zwetschgenkompott. in german it has a very old and boring sound. its basically plums boiled in a nice sweet vanilla and orange sirup.
so take about three quarters of a cup with sugar and heat it up in one cup of water. put one vanilla pod in the sweet, sweet water, after you scratched out the inside. also put one or two sternanis ( that is a winterspice, the google translater gave me the german word as translation. i thought it might be like the iceberg or the kindergarten a german word in english. let me know if there is any correct translation to it, please) and some zests of a organic orange peel in the water. let boil for five to ten minutes. then fill the plums in the pot and close it with a lid. turn off the heat after maybe two minutes. let it sit for ten minutes. don't cook too well. we still want to know, what we are eating.
serve it warm with whipped, not sweetened, cream. delicious! you can of course use all kinds of fresh and tasty fruits. 
this recipes really starts the end of the summer. what a time of the year! its bitter sweet.
I'm looking forward meeting you next week.
please comment and sign up as members. 
have a blessed week.

yours ute

Monday, August 27, 2012


hello my dear friends. its me again. 
since days I'm thinking about a topic i can write about. so i made a decision: flowers! aren't flowers the best to pimp a boring and ugly part of the house? you can get all kinds of colors, shapes and sizes. you'll  find cool styles, romantic styles, crazy styles, whatever you want. 
what i really love, and that may sound really weird, is the fact, that flowers are perishable. that means you have every week a chance of a new beginning. doesn't that sound lovely? wouldn't it be a dream if we would have that opportunity in other parts of our lives. 
imagine if we would be able to start new with difficult relationships. 
fights could be solved in loving ways, we would learn to really forgive, we would learn to really see the other person in its beauty and uniqueness and realize the priceless value of every single one. 
i think we should work on this attitude, like we work on the new beautiful flower bouquets in our houses. the world would look much better, don't you think?   
when i create an arrangement with flowers -and i hardly ever buy ready made flower bouquets- I'm sometimes so touched by its beauty that i have tears in my eyes. really. i know, i know. I'm a strange person. well. 
here are some pictures of this kind of decoration.
i hope you like it.
if you want to make your own arrangements, always use a clean vase and lukewarm water. remove all leaves that could touch the water. cut with a sharp knife the end of the flower stalk in length and put in the water immediately.  change the water every second day. this helps to keep the flowers fresh for up to one week.

The secret is the freshness of the flowers and the variety of possibilities to arrange them. its not necessary to buy always flowers in a shop. maybe you find some during a walk, or you have some in the garden (or in the neighbors garden, or, hm, just be careful;-)) also markets are sometimes a good source.
what makes a big difference is the container you use. try out unusual things, like cups, bowls, jam glasses etc. i found some very nice peaces at the flee market. some ribbon, rope or other materials may help to create a unique and very special look.

so have fun trying out some new decorations and things.

i hope you enjoy it.

see you soon.

please register at my blog as member and give your comment. i'd like to hear some feedback and thoughts. 
blessings, ute 

this is the shop in zittau where i buy most of my flowers.

Monday, August 20, 2012


Hello again!
After the nice and smooth start last week, i 'd like to continue with some more of my thoughts and experiences i had so far with starting this blog.
when i decided to start, i had no clue how this works. so i was a little overwhelmed by the fact, that i need a name for it. i couldn't find one.
so, since at least two of my family members ( my husband jan and my sweet daughter amelie) are extremely into competitions - not always fun, believe me- i asked them to find a name. the price was, that i cook whatever the winner wants me to cook.
as i already mentioned last time, jan found the name.
so, his wish was wiener schnitzel, kroketten (this is similar to french fries, but actually made with mashed potatoes) and götterspeise (this is usually something like jelly-o). yak.
so for the götterspeise i told jan im gonna buy it, but he nailed me down, that i promised that i cook myself. well.

so i took organic gelatine, one liter (about 4 cups) of raspberry juice, one cup of grenadine juice, sugar and fresh raspberries. 
i put the gelatine in cold water until its soft. 
then i heated up the juice and the sugar. it needs to taste quite sweet.
when the juice is hot, but not boiling, i stir in the gelatine until its completely gone. if you cook it, it doesn't work!!!
then i put in the raspberries.
i fill it in glasses and let it cool down in the fridge for a couple of hours. 
shortly before the meal i decorate it with whipped cream and some berries.
its very refreshing, kids will love it!! and so much better than bought jelly-o. and all natural.

the second thing was the wiener schnitzel. that was easy, because the whole family likes it i make it anyways sometimes.
so you take good meat. the original wiener schnitzel is made with calf meat. I'm using sometimes pork, sometimes turkey. good quality is important.
then you take three bowls. one with flower, one with scrambled eggs and one with bread crumbs. put some salt on the meet and then put it first in the flower, than in the egg and then in the breadcrumbs. the meat needs to be covered from all sides. 
heat good oil in a pan and fry the schnitzel in it. use enough oil! don't use too much heat.
when the schnitzel is golden brown and crunchy, its done. yum!
serve it with slices of organic lemons. everybody can squeeze the lemon juice over the schnitzel themselves. yuuuum!!!!

i put the cover of silence over the kroketten. i bought them -ready to heat- at the supermarket. hm. shame on me. don't tell jan.

so we had a very nice and tasty winner meal. 

by the way, especially for my dear american friends: the original wiener schnitzel is not a typical german food! wien is the capital of austria! close, but not germany!

see you soon again! thanks for reading. blessings, yours ute


Thursday, August 16, 2012


my dearest people and readers of this blog.
its almost unbelievable, that im starting now with this new and exciting adventure.
i want to write in my blog about beautyful things and living, good and healthy food, family and friends and we will see, what else will come along.
in the last months and years i developed more and more a desire to surround myself with beauty and good things and people. specially since we are living in an area of germany, where there is not a lot of sense for things like that.
i will write my blog in english, since very many of my friends are English-speaking. my english is not really perfect, so please forgive me, if some phrases are not right. i hope i will not make any embarrassing mistakes :-).
so before we will start i want to thank liz mannchen. shes a very good friend and had the idea to start this blog. she once made a comment, that the coffee table  in our kitchen was looking like the table in the peter pan movie. so, thank you, liz, for the idea and for loving me!
also a big thank you to my husband jan schlegel. he had the idea for the blogs name. so he found the laundry pin, and a little later he added the pink. i think he thought im a pink one. i love you.

im also very thankful to my dear son benedikt schlegel. he does all the computer stuff, because computers hate me. he is incredibly patient and encouraging. your a special one.
and finally i want to thank my son jonathan and his friends, my daughter amelie and her friends, the rest of the family and our many dear friends who are always welcome in our home and at our table.

Thanks for being with me. please let me know what you think.  im also thankful for new ideas. more will come soon. exciting!