Friday, July 20, 2007
Two years of KAMA promotion, and a new delicious kama dessert recipe
This Sunday is the second 'anniversary' of my kama post, the Estonian ingredient with a difference. Kama is an mixture of various roasted and ground grains & pulses - usually peas, barley, rye and wheat - that is traditionally mixed with sour or curdled milk or kefir or such like. Since that original posting I've been asked by various readers of Nami-nami to send them a packet or two, and I've happily obliged. Many of these recipients have had an Estonian connection, which explains their interest in kama. There's Anne, whose father is Estonian (she wrote about the kama delivery here and my kama & mascarpone truffles here). (And Clivia, whose boyfriend has Estonian roots, bought a bag of kama on her trip to Estonia last summer). Then there was an American-Estonian reader in Palo Alto, CA, who asked for no less than 4 packets of kama. This was followed by a daughter of an Australian-Estonian lady in Queensland, who asked for a packet on behalf of her elderly mum, who had suddenly got nostalgic cravings for kama with fermented milk. Another American-Estonian was missing kama and enquired about it on my blog. And just this month a comment was left by two Dutch girls, Elze & Ike, who had tried kama in Estonia few years ago and were keen to try it again (so much, that they'd really like me to send two, and not just one, packet of this grain mixture).. But it's not just expat Estonians or previous visitors who have been emailing me and asking me about kama. Last year one of the eGullet readers, Eden, asked me to send her a packet of kama and a bar of kama chocolate (and she sent me some amazing chocolates in return - I still long for those Smoked Salt Caramels by Fran's Chocolates!!) I think I could earn a nice little extra income if I'd open an official kama export business :)
Every single visitor from abroad has been served kama in one form or another in our house, and they've always asked for second helpings, so there's something in this very humble-sounding dessert after all. And it's not just domestic kitchens which are facing a kama revival. After years of suffering from the image of 'too humble to be served outside domestic kitchens', it's now making an appearance in many of the fancy restaurant menus (for example Pädaste Manor House on Muhu island, Egoist in Tallinn), as well as festive menus served to foreign dignitaries (George Bush, for example, was served a dessert of Kama and cream cheese cake with pumpkin marmalade last November). The Independence Day reception hosted by the president on 24th of February 2007 featured a dessert of sour cream & kama mousse with lingonberry jam and cornflower blossoms.
I thought it'd be nice to mark the 2-year 'anniversary' of my first kama posting by giving you a simple recipe for another delicious kama dessert.
Kama mousse with season's berries
400 ml whipping cream
3 Tbsp sugar
4 Tbsp kama mixture
fresh fruit or berries, chopped if necessary
Whip the cream and sugar until soft peaks form, then fold in kama mixture. Finally, layer in glasses or dessert bowls with season's fruit or berries. On the top photo, the kama mousse is layered with sweetened strawberry puree. On the second photo the mousse is mixed with wild blueberries/bilberries.
And if you're lucky enough to have some of this kama mixture, then you can also try my recipe for kama & mascarpone 'truffles'.
Wish you all a lovely weekend! And of course, if you fancy trying some kama yourself, then leave me a comment stating so. I'll see what I can do :)
UPDATE 30.7.2007: You can see another beautiful photo of kama mousse here - Maarja has made a fabulous version with blueberries and raspberries.