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Broad beans with pasta

... and Diocletian's pancakes for dessert

Ingredients: (serves four) 500g of broad beans, 3-4 cloves of garlic, two onions, 100ml oil, parsley root, half a bundle of parsley, 3-4 carrots, 2-3 tomatoes, 100g smoked meat, e.g. bacon, two handfuls of pasta, salt, pepper, two teaspoons of Vegeta.

Pancake ingredients: 500g flour (mix hard and soft wheat flour), 4 eggs, 1 sachet of vanilla sugar, sugar, 100ml milk, 50 ml carbonated water, a few drops of rum, oil for frying, toppings and spreads to taste.

We have already cooked broad beans with artichokes, and now, since this vegetable is in season, we are going to prepare broad beans with pasta. Half a kilogram of broad beans will be enough for four servings, and this will hardly cost you anything, which means that you will end up with a tasty and inexpensive meal. If you buy shelled beans from the market because you don't have time to shell them yourself, they will cost you slightly more. Jase the cook tells us to remove those black caps from the broad beans if you don't want your beans with pasta to become too dark in colour and if you want to avoid your pasta becoming grey.

Mara and Branko from Medo's kitchen began cooking. They put all the chopped ingredients into a pan (3-4 cloves of garlic, two onions, 3-4 carrots, some parsley root and leaves) into a pot with cold oil without cooking them separately. The cook reminds us that it is more important to add the parsley root rather than the leaves, because it has a stronger taste. Then you add two to three fresh tomatoes and some smoked meat (a piece of bacon or something similar).
"There's no real taste where some pork isn't involved," adds Medo, paying tribute to dishes with smoked meat.
Cook the dish for approximately 20 minutes, then add the broad beans and season the mixture with pepper, salt and a teaspoon or two of Vegeta. Try it every once in a while it to see if anything needs adding. Approximately ten minutes before the broad beans are done (which you can tell when tasting them), add two handfuls of pasta (rigatoni, penne or any other type that you prefer). And voila - your dish is done!

Now we are going to treat ourselves to some pancakes. I know, there isn't a single housewife in the world who hasn't made them or doesn't make them at least once a week. And hands up whose culinary career didn't start with pancakes? But let us show you how they are made at Medo's kitchen.
First, beat the eggs with a mixer (yolks and whites separately so that the pancakes are even more beautiful, with that nice golden web on the surface). After beating the eggs this way, mix the egg yolks and egg whites together and add a pinch of salt. Then add one sachet of vanilla sugar, mix together, followed by 100ml of milk and mix again. Finally, add 50ml of some sort of carbonated water and mix again. Good God, my head is spinning from all this mixing!
Now add 500g of flour - it is best if you combine hard and soft flour). Mix everything once again and add some rum. The easiest way to measure out the rum is by using the cap of the bottle. Usually, we like to add one cap of rum.
"Pancakes are less greasy if they contain some alcohol," we are told. It is important to pre-heat the oil in the frying pan to prevent the pancakes from sticking to the bottom, but don't let the pancakes swim in oil. The oil should only 'lick' the pan. Fry the pancakes in a shallow non-stick frying pan. The size of the ladle for measuring out the batter in the pan depends on the size of the pan. Those who are skilled can perform acrobatics with pancakes, flipping them in the air, but you can also just use a knife to turn them over. And the toppings? Plain, coarse sugar is good enough for me, but you can use a homemade loquat marmalade, which is how we make Diocletian's pancakes. Or you can fill them with chocolate syrup, cocoa spread, ice cream. Whatever the filling you choose, bon appétit!

Source: „What Will I Cook Today?" –  Notes from Medo's Kitchen
Text: Mia Sesartić, Recipes: Zoran Kljaković Gašpić – Medo