A tostiarepa or electric arepa maker is a must for the modern cook.  Using this appliance can cut the cooking time of arepas from 20 minutes to eight. Arepas are traditionally grilled on the stovetop until fully cooked, or baked in a hot oven after a crust has formed in a pan first.

Of course there are mixed reviews about the tostiarepa, but I suggest you use your own guidance when choosing one. I for one, just love anything that can make my cooking easier!

Featured arepa recipe: Reina Pepiada


Tostiarepa or Arepa Maker 

Double boiler?

What is a double boiler?

A double boiler is a “double-decker” saucepan that exists of three parts. A bottom saucepan, a fitting upper pan and a lid. The double boiler is utilized on the stovetop and is used for cooking delicate sauces or melting chocolate without burning or overcooking.

The bottom pan is filled with boiling water and the food to be cooked is placed in the top pan, covered with the lid (optional). The pot on top is heated only by the steam from the boiling water in the bottom pan. The pans have to be tight fitting to prevent steam (and heat) from escaping.

Similar techniques are bain-marie (water bath) or double steaming.

There is a variety of double boilers on the market, made from metal or glas. Check the following models below and choose one you like.

Double Boilers

Tempeh with spitskool (Surinamese-Javanese)

This recipe, which I really love, is vegetarian and proves to me that vegetarian food can be healthy and delicious too! The recipe is almost the same as the one with tofu and eggplant because they have the same basics. However, the “tempeh” makes it taste completely different.

Some clarifications, before we get to the recipe.

Spitskool or Green Cabbage
Spitskool or Green Cabbage

What is “spitskool“?  Spitskool is Dutch for a type of green cabbage, that is very wellknown in the Netherlands, not so much in the U.S.A.  Spits means “pointy” referring to the form of the cabbage.

And “tempeh“? Tempeh is a patty made of whole soybeans and frequently used in Javanese cooking. Depending on the dish, tempeh can be sliced in thin strips or cubed.

Here is the recipe: 

1 block tempeh (cut in cubes and fried)
400 grams of spitskool (sliced)
1 small onion (chopped)
3 cloves garlic (chopped)
0,5 tomato (chopped)
2 salam leaves
0,5 tsp sugar
3 tbsp oil
3 tbsp sweet soya sauce
3 bouillon cubes
a little bit of hot sauce or red pepper
100 ml water

Heat the oil. Fry the onions first, then add the garlic and fry all until it’s light brown. Add the tomato, hot sauce or pepper, bouillon cubes, salam leves, sugar and soya sauce. Stir fry all until the tomato is almost dissolved. Then add the tempeh, stir for a short while and add the spitskool. Stir again, then add water after a few minutes. Turn the heat low and cover the pot. Let it all cook, stirring now and then, until the spitskool is soft, but not overcooked. Serve with cooked rice.


Tip: You can also vary this recipe by using another vegetable like broccoli, eggplant etc.

Njang switie! Enjoy!

Mom’s Broccoli Casserole

Thanks to Michael for sharing one of his favorites: Mom’s Broccoli Casserole.  As you can see below, it is pretty easy and straightforward. Nothing fancy, nothing complicated, but a guaranteed success. I love casseroles because they’re easy to make and this one covers vegetables and starches at once. Great to accompany sizzling porkchops or a juicy steak.

Broccoli Casserole
Broccoli Casserole


2 boxes of frozen chopped broccoli
2 1/2 packages of Success Rice (white) in a bag
15 ounce jar of Cheese Whiz
1 small onion (chopped)
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1 stick of margarine

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cook broccoli and rice per the directions on the box.
  • Mix the broccoli, rice, cream of chicken soup, stick of margarine, and chopped onion while hot.
  • Add as much Cheese Whiz as desired (usually takes approximately ½ to ¾ of a jar).
  • Grease a 9” by 12” casserole dish with margarine and add mixture.
  • Bake for approximately 45 minutes.

Tip:  Add 1lb. of ground beef for an all-inclusive, one-meal dish. First, brown the ground meat in a pan until the juices have evaporated, stir in some garlic, salt and black pepper. Combine with the broccoli-mixture and follow the rest of the recipe.


Lemon cream pie (Canadian)

 This recipe is a variation of the “Creamy Lemon Meringue Pie”. My fiancee loves it so much that he  “made” his mother give me the recipe. She got it in Canada where they lived with the family for a few years and where he was born. Now that I know how to make the pie, he loves me even more.   As the saying goes: “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.”  🙂

Ladies, never underestimate this saying, so try this recipe and maybe your boyfriend will stick with you!



Mix the following ingredients to make the dough for the bottom crust:

1¼ cup flour

100 gram butter

4 tbsp water



Chill the dough in the fridge for about 20 minutes. Roll out the dough to cover the bottom of the pie pan and bake at 225 degrees until it is light brown (about 20 min).


For the filling:

¾ cup granulated sugar

3½ tbsp cornstarch

½ tsp salt

1¾ cup scalded milk

2 eggs separated

1 tsp grated lemon rind

¼ cup lemon juice

2 tsps butter

small baked pie shell

¼ tsp vanilla


Measure out ¾ cup sugar and mix with cornstarch and salt.

Stir in scalded milk.

Cook in double boiler, stirring constantly untill the filling is smooth and thick. Cover and continue to cook, stirring frequently until the cornstarch is fully cooked.

Beat egg yolks slightly, adding part of the hot mixture, then pour back into the double boiler. Continue to cook for another minute while stirring constantly.

Remove from heat and stir in lemon rind, lemon juice and butter.

Cool slightly and pour into baked shell.

Beat egg whites stiff, but not dry, gradually beat in remaining 2 tbsp. sugar.

Continue to beat untill the meringue stands in peaks, adding vanilla. Spread mixture over pie filling and bake in moderate oven (350 degrees) until meringue is slightly browned.