Just in time before saying goodbye to February here it comes the Lunchbox of the month…
…but no big deal because the ingredientes I choosed will stay available all the coming months at the grocery: pink grapefruit & fennel! This is also actually my first “totally random and fusion” recipe, looking at east, west and a bit of north too…The inspiration comes from the colors and the bitter taste of the pink grapefruit I pick for my VEGEDARIO calendar I prepare for the spanish version of this blog.
Also: it’s been a while I wanted to try the classic soft bread bun recipe updated with sourdough and use it for the blog, but I didn’t want to prepare any classic meat patties or burgers because it’s the kind of food I like to eat warm or freshly jumped out of the grill and in this blog I always try to stay true to my primary idea: write and shoot only recipes to build up a picnic, to make a nice foodie lunchbox pause at work, to eat in the garden or in a park. Easy to make, easy to grab.
Soo..instead of a meat burger I filled my buns with an quick & tasty ceviche, made with bonito fish. In Spain is now in season and I really love it in combo with the bitter of grapefruit and the sweet of the lime. I added some freshness with sliced fennel and to add some density I made a genius sauce, the fake alioli, made with avocado and spiced with wasabi.
What do you think, is that enough “fusion”??
The day before your lunch or picnic you can prepare all the ingredients, one by one: the buns, the ceviche, the fake alioli and the sliced veggies or sprouts to decorate. You can carry everything in jars and put it together at the very last moment…
Ingredients for 2 picniquetters
make 4 buns big size o 5 medium (these sourdough buns are really easy to make: when I prepare them, I make 6-8, I use what I need and the rest I freeze them for when we get a craving!)
250 gr strong flour + 80gr sourdough
100 gr of water (or milk)
2 eggs (one for the dough, one to brush it over the buns before they get into the oven)
30 gr of butter
1 tbsp brown sugar or honey
1 tsp salt
seeds you like: sesame, white or black, poppy, linseed to spread all over the buns
You can make the buns in advance, they will stay soft for a couple of days: First mix the water or milk with the sourdough, then add the egg, the mild butter and the sugar and mix everything well. Thern you can add the salt and the flour until you will form and work out a nice smooth dough, elastic and not so sticky. If you prepare it at night, put it in a ball and cover with film until morning. When you wake up, knead the dough a bit more, round it again and let it rest until it has doubled its volume(2-4 hours)
Divide the dough in 4/5 small buns, put it in the baking tray, brushed with some oil to avoid sticking, and wait for another hour or two. Once they’re ready, while preheating the oven to 180º, brush the egg on every bun and spread all over the mixed seed. The eggs with let the seeds stick but you can also use water instead. Once the oven is warm, bake the buns for apron 25-30 min and…voilá (you can also see a bit of my messy home..where literally every corner of the house can be transformed in a stand to proudly show some handmade food…)
Grapefruit & lime ceviche
200g of fresh (minimum 48h safely frozen) bonito fish. Also try with thuna fish, shrimps or salmon. Diced.
2 tbsp rice vinegar
1 lime express juice
the diced segments of a half grapefruit and all its juice
1 quart of a red onion, sliced
fresh coriander, ginger and a garlic diced
610 grains of pink pepper
Easy: mix all the ingredientes toghether in a tray for a couple of hours or, purists say, 20 minutes. If you are going to a picnic bring the fish diced in a jar (in a refrigerated bag;) and all the ingredients in another tupperware. Once you’ll reach the blanket spot..you can mix everything for a while until serving!
Fake alioli with avocado
I absolute love this version: I literrally am a compulsive ali-holic (one of the reasons I felt in love with Mallorca island, my second home, is that you can find a great handmade alioli at a few minutes away from you anytime & anywhere!) but…despite of my love for this genius sauce my stomach don’t appreciate it at all: it’s actually the only food I can’t properly digest…sob. Everywhere on foodblogs you can find this version with wasabi, and for me it is the perfect solution: I can dramatically reduce the amount of garlic in the recipe because the wasabi paste makes the “work” instead. Also adding avocado is brilliant, the color is amazing and the consistence is really similar to the original catalan treasure, without using so much oil or …eggs like someone does. Mix and beat:
salt and a bit of lime juice, squeezed
2 tbsp of ev oild with
1 tsp of handmade wasabi paste or normal wasabi paste (the green tube you can find at oriental groceries)
*To make the paste you will need wasabi powder. Is so easy and instant magic! Just mix a teaspoon of powder with the same amount of cold, really cold water in a tiny glass or jar lid. In a few seconds the magic will happen and the powder will transform in the hot paste we know and love. Important: just prepare it and add it at the very last moment to the mix because it seems after about twenty minutes it will loose all its energetic and sharp taste!
To decorate I added sliced fennel, previously seasoned with some oil and salt.