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hey missjoy, or any other foodie bustie, how much do you think that muffin recipe would be affected by the acidity in crushed pineapple? cause for my first experiment, i was thinking about doing a tropical theme, with dried mango and papaya plumped out by apple juice, crushed pineapple, and maybe coconut struedel crumblies on top if i'm feeling ambitious. happy.gif
A blog I have been totally ignoring lately, even though I've got all sorts of things I've meant to be posting!

I ran into this recipe for pineapple muffins - sounds like it should be good. The only thing I notice about it is that they use both baking powder and baking soda. In this entry at cupcakeblog, she rambles about baking powder vs baking soda, and with the acidity of the pineapple, you could probably do what ASoS does and use a mix for this batch.
ohh yummy! that sound so good grrrly! let us kow how they turn out.
I'm beginning to think that the bay leaf/airtight container combination to keep weevils out of your flour is a myth. I have a handful of bay leaves wrapped in cheesecloth in the bottom of my airtight container of flour....I opened it up this morning and it's full of the damn things. Ick, ick, ick. No pancakes for us, I guess.

The only other possibility is that they were in the bag of flour when I bought them, but I've been working on this bag for a few months now, so I don't know why they'd just be appearing now.
Hey, guys! I just wanted to share a couple of desserts that I have recently made, which are great for summer.

Last night, I made a Star Anise Cake with Raspberry Almond Cream Sauce. It was so easy, and really beautiful and fragrant. The other dessert was a Scandinavian Summer Tart with Orange Honey Sauce.

The recipe for the Scandinavian Summer Tart filling is so easy:

3 oz. Cream Cheese - softened
1 cup Sour Cream
2 Egg Whites
2 Tablespoons of Sugar

Cream the cream cheese, scraping the mixing bowl a couple of times to make sure there aren't any stiff chunks stuck to the sides of the bowl. After the cream cheese is fluffy, add the sour cream and whip until mixed thoroughly. You might need to scape the bowl again to make sure there isn't any sour cream stuck to the sides or bottom.

In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites to soft peaks, then add the sugar. Whip to ALMOST (not quite) stiff peaks.

Fold the meringue into the sour cream mixture. Put the filling into a tart shell and chill. Top with fresh berries and eat it up!

Alternatively, you can spoon the filling into a bowl with berries. I served it in little martini glasses topped with berries.

The Orange Honey sauce is also very simple. Although, when I made it, I didn't measure anything. Sorry.

Put about a half cup of orange juice into a saucepan. Add several thin slices of fresh ginger root (optional), and cook on medium heat until the OJ tastes gingery and it reduces a little bit. Strain the ginger out of the OJ. Add about 1 cup (or more) of honey and cook, reducing until very syrupy. Add about two ounces of Grand Marnier (optional). Voila!

After it is nice and cool, you can drizzle this sauce over your tart filling and berries, and you have a nice, light, not-too-sweet, summery dessert.

OK - I miss this thread. Seems like not many people are cooking this summer.

I love this thread puppykitten - I tend to lurk though. I don't think anyone wants to hear about my pre-Transformers-movie dinner at McDonalds (JoyBoy was horrified to read the nutritional info on the back of our placemats after ordering what he thought was a "healthy alternative).

Our latest cooking forays centre around our new charcoal grill. We needed a bbq and had been thinking propane (what we always used before) but because of price constraints looked at charcoal. The biggest drawback for people is the time to heat up - but bbqs for us are usually leasurely anyway. It is awesome! First there is the feeling you are actually cooking over a fire. And then there is the flavour. If you told me how much jucier the meat would be on charcoal compared to gas - I would have doubted it.

We have made amazing chicken souvalki, pork chops, ribs, grilled potatoes, mesquite smoked steaks with grilled thai cauliflower - yum!

We haven't even been using any marinades or rubs because of enjoying the taste of the grill for now. We even made smores the other night in the embers after finishing grilling.

I just bought two cooking books last night. The Soul of a Chef (which I'm addicted to after one chapter) and Super Natural Cooking from the amazing woman who writes the blog.
okay, so this probably isn't very impressive but it was sooo good:

yesterday i made turkey burgers for the first time. i was afraid the ground turkey breast was going to be really dry (this was my first time dealing with it) and so i marinated it for about 30 minutes with a little bit of garlic vinaigrette from the supermarket. then i chopped up tomatoes, scallions, and red onion, and added some shoyu.

we served them up on pita with tabouli and cheese. they were awesome and not dry at all, so i think i want to try more turkey recipes.

any ideas?
Polly - I had the same problem. I find that if you put it in an airtight container and then put plastic wrap over the opening then screwing the lid on might help. It did for me. Good luck.

Making these this weekend but doing strawberries instead of blueberries.
I am waiting for my cinnamon buns to finish rising!
There is a recipe (hiding my face) on the Rachael Ray website (re-emerging) for chicken burgers in a pita with a yogurt sauce, the flavours are very good (I believe there is red curry paste in the burger) and almost has a falafal feeling to it.

I highly enjoyed it.
how were the cinni buns? it is way to hot to cook or bake anything in my house right now. it has to be grilled outside of not require heat.
Hey, last night I made some vegetarian Swedish Meatballs, and they were so easy and delicious!

I bought the savory mushroom veggie meatballs from Wild Oats. Trader Joe's also has good ones.

Mince a couple of shallots (or an onion), and slice some white mushrooms. Cook the shallots and mushrooms together. The mushrooms will exude a lot of moisture. Cook until most of that water is dried up. Add some allspice (to taste - depends on how much you're making), cook another minute, then add some mushroom broth or vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and let simmer for a few minutes to get the sauce all mushroom-y.

At this point, you can thicken the sauce using whatever method you prefer. I use roux, which is butter and flour cooked together in a little saute pan. It's the consistency of peanut butter, and you cook it until it smells a little toasty or nutty. Whisk the roux into the boiling liquid, little by little, until it is thickened to your liking. Cook off the starch by boiling a few minutes more.

Salt and pepper to taste, then (this is optional) add some heavy cream. Add the frozen meatballs and let simmer slowly until the meatballs are heated through.

Serve over rice, mashed potatoes, or wide egg noodles. It's also good with some lingonberry sauce, which you can get at some gourmet food stores as well as at Ikea.

Okally-dokally. Where is everyone, BTW?
I have friends coming from Nova Scotia in a couple of weeks, and one of them has been pestering me about making Garlic soup for no less than five years now. Garlic soup, in the middle of summer, sounds like walking through a day during a sunny heat wave wearing a fur coat and plastic boots. But she insists, and refuses to visit in winter instead.

On the other hand, I've got a garden full of fresh garlic! Which might be really well used here. Just have to gather about 65 bulbs of the stuff, and perhaps think of a way of roasting about half of them on a barbecue or something, to minimize the loathesome task of firing up the oven (because I know, when she arrives, it will be at least 90 degrees that day). It's actually not a complicated recipe, but it does involve heavy "wintry" ingredients like fresh cream, about 45 roasted garlic cloves and another 20 or so cloves cooked in stock, thickened with cream, and garnished with freshly chopped flat leaved parsley and maybe some sliced fresh or chopped reconstituted porcini mushrooms.

Does anyone know of a "lighter", "fresher" version that won't overwhelm everyone like I know this soup will?
ChaCha - there is a traditional Spanish soup, "Sopa de Ajo", that just might be what you are looking for. I don't know the exact recipe offhand, but you can probably find it online.

It consists of pureed garlic, bread crumbs, and almonds, and it is served cold. It's pretty tasty, too!
OK, ChaCha, I found this recipe that looks similar to the one I had in my cookbook (which I can't find). The recipe I had in my cookbook also included grapes, I think. For my recipe, I blended everything together (Except the grapes). This recipe says to add the garlic and bread after you have blended. That sounds weird to me. Anyway, it's a yummy soup, and good for summer, too. Let me know what you think.


250 g (9 oz.) blanched raw almonds
2 cloves of garlic, peeled
150 g (5 oz.) fresh white bread crumbs
150 ml (5 oz.) extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp. sherry vinegar
1 liter (4 cups) very cold water
Coarse salt
250 g (9 oz.) peeled seeded red or green grapes

Soak the bread in some cold water.
If you wish to use the traditional method, continue using the mortar. Otherwise, transfer the mixture to a blender at this point. Add the almonds and blend to make a paste.
When the mixture is smooth, drizzle in the olive oil to create an emulsion.
Add the vinegar and continue blending until smooth. Add the very cold water until the desired consistency is reached.
Refrigerate until just before serving. Before serving, correct the seasoning with salt and vinegar to taste. Pour into a serving container and place the muscat grapes over top.
Crush the peeled garlic and salt in a mortar. Add the drained bread.

Renovate your place with these great and easy tips from!
Puppykitty your recipe sounds so much better suited for summer...and the bonus is I've got all the ingredients, including the muscat grapes right at hand. I'm going to give this soup a "test run" on Sunday afternoon. I suspect my friend will still insist on the full-labour version, but I'm sure she'll love this one as well.

Thank you so much for finding the recipe, and for the suggestion--you're lovely!!!

QUOTE(adriana @ Aug 10 2007, 02:17 PM) *
Renovate your place with these great and easy tips from!

So how does everyone feel about Spam? Personally, I've never had it, but I hear it's very popular in much so that it's part of McDonald's breakfast that's quality.
Chacha, I've used silken tofu as a cream substitute in soup with very tasty results. I think that might lighten up your recipie nicely, without having to miss the creamy texture of the original. Save me a seat, I'll be joining you all for dinner. GARLIC SOUP! Sounds incredible.
MOI, puppykitty!!

that recipe for sopa de ajo sound agua-na-boca yummy!

i have to agree with you, though: adding the garlic and bread at the end, AFTER blending, sounds just plain odd to me. i mean, who would want to eat a big chunk of garlic? (unless the garlic was roasted first?)

flanker, i like that idea of substituting silken tofu for cream! don't think it would work for this recipe, though....sounds like what is giving this soup consistency and mouth feel is the blended almonds and the bread.

speaking of grapes, i had them a totally new way last week -- sauteed in butter and mixed with teeny brussel sprouts. interesting and tasty combination of sweet and sour. i never would have thought of it on my own! the grapes were seedless red grapes, so the dish was also very aesthetically pleasing.

spam. hee! yes, it is VERY popular in hawai'i! not a real fan of it myself, but.....
Hey, Tes! You're from Brazil!!!

Have you ever heard of a fruit called Lulo? My friend from Colombia introduced me to it years ago in Chicago, and I loved it. I found a Tropical Foods Market here, where I live now, that sells the frozen pulp, and I have been making smoothies out of it like crazy. In fact, I'm drinking one as I type.

I bought a few bags of it the other day, and I was reading the nutrition facts on the back of the package. 130% USRDA of Calcium, 130% Vitamin A, 90% Vitamin C, and 8% Iron. Very nutritious! And tastes great when it's really hot outside. I put the fruit pulp in the blender with some cold water, ice cubes, and sugar and blend blend blend. Yum! It's a pretty tart flavor, and the color is orange-ish brown.

I also bought some other fruit pulps at the market, including Chirimoya and Guanabana. I think Guanabana is my favorite of all, but it doesn't have much nutritional value. It's so very tasty, though.

Anyway, being from South America, I thought maybe you have heard of these fruits before??? Have you ever had them fresh? What else can one do with the pulp besides makes smoothies? Don't get me wrong, I love smoothies, but maybe I could make a granita or sorbet or ice cream with them? Or cook with them? I dunno. What else are they used for in South America?

BTW - another name for Lulo, which is written on the package, is Naranjilla.
Does anyone have a good peanut sauce recipe? I was at a festival this weekend and there was a stand with the BEST peanut noodles I have ever had. It was very garlicky and kinda spicy... totally perfect. I have had peanut sauces before that are way too sweet, tangy, thick, oily, etc., and I need something with more kick.

I'm having a party this weekend and I figured it would be a good thing to serve. I enjoy feeding people but it can get expensive. Any other cheap vegan party recipes are welcome as well.
ht - here's my recipe, I think its quite tasty....

Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup hot water
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice from 1 lime
2 tablespoons Asian chili sauce (or cayenne powder to taste)
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 clove garlic , minced or pressed through a garlic press (about 1 teaspoon)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro leaves
2 scallions white and green parts, sliced thin

1. FOR SPICY PEANUT DIPPING SAUCE: Whisk the peanut butter and hot water together in a medium bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients. Transfer to a small serving bowl, and put aside to use after the beef has been placed on the skewers.
Hi Turbo! It's been a while! Hello Tesao!

Thanks for posting that peanut sauce recipe. I've never liked using the bottled variety and I hate to keep it around. So much better to make this from scratch!

Here's the Roasted Garlic Soup recipe my friend wants--it's rich and very flavourful, and the silken tofu (if it's a real tofu, fermented and all) would probably ease things up a bit in terms of heaviness. With cream and parmiggiano, it's amazing in February; not so much in August.

26 garlic cloves (unpeeled)
2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
2 1/4 cups sliced onions
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
18 garlic cloves, peeled
3 1/2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup whipping cream

1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese (about 2 ounces)
4 lemon wedges

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place 26 garlic cloves in small glass baking dish. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper; toss to coat. Cover baking dish tightly with foil and bake until garlic is golden brown and tender, about 45 minutes. Cool. Squeeze garlic between fingertips to release cloves. Transfer cloves to small bowl.

Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onions and thyme and cook until onions are translucent, about 6 minutes. Add roasted garlic and 18 raw garlic cloves and cook 3 minutes. Add chicken stock; cover and simmer until garlic is very tender, about 20 minutes. Working in batches, purée soup in blender until smooth. Return soup to saucepan; add cream and bring to simmer. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Rewarm over medium heat, stirring occasionally.)

Divide grated cheese among 4 bowls and ladle soup over. Squeeze juice of 1 lemon wedge into each bowl and serve.

(I took this off the website, from Bon Appétit, February 1999, but I've been making it for years and it's really, really good.)

Puppykitty's Sopa de Ajo's beauty is that it doesn't want to be a heavy, thick, robust, hearty soup. It wants to be a fresh, flavourful, refreshing and complex summer soup that makes you think of the garden and the vineyard, and cool summer breezes coming off the lake. Cream has no place there!

It is a really delicious soup though--when I made it I used puppykitty's approach and put everything I combined except the grapes in the blender too. I love them both, but definitely prefer the freshness of the sopa de ajo in this heat.
Thanks Turbo! That recipes sounds delicious. I'm probably going to use it on noodles with some carrots and bok choy mixed in and some extra scallions thrown on top.

And my boyfriend is going to make samosas. Perfect party food!
Hi epicurean ladies - can anyone help me out? I bought a Cuisinart mini-prep food processor at a garage sale. I plugged it in and it worked there, but I got it home and tried to use it and it's not working. I'm sure that there is some lock or other that I'm not engaging but I couldn't get the goddamned thing to work... and there's no instruction booklet. Any ideas about what I'm doing wrong? Thanks!!
substandard english usage
QUOTE(dinosaurgerms @ Aug 15 2007, 05:20 PM) *
Hi epicurean ladies - can anyone help me out? I bought a Cuisinart mini-prep food processor at a garage sale. I plugged it in and it worked there, but I got it home and tried to use it and it's not working. I'm sure that there is some lock or other that I'm not engaging but I couldn't get the goddamned thing to work... and there's no instruction booklet. Any ideas about what I'm doing wrong? Thanks!!

With most food processors, there is a safety that is engaged only when it is assembled properly and the lid is securely closed and fixed. Anything else and it won't turn on. This keeps you from 1. inadvertently removing bits of finger or 2. flinging dinner around your kitchen in an unforeseen decorative way.

I know this because when I'm not paying attention, I put my Cuisinart put together wrong and the bastard won't turn on. dry.gif
The lid was on backwards which I finally figured out after about forty minutes of fiddling around with the damn thing, covered in olive oil, and cutting my finger. I feel like an idiot.
But the pesto cured my hurt feelings!! Thanks!
Hello, precocious Busties!

I got a GREAT deal on some huge (8 count) shrimp. I've never cooked shrimp that large and I was wondering if anybody had any festive suggestions?
I made a shrimp appetizer at Christmas, tree, that was a chunk of cheese (I think I did monterey jack) stuck in the curve of the shrimp and then wrapped in bacon. I think I got the recipe off and they were called shrimp kisses. they were yummy!

I got a recipe for Nanaimo Bars, which are a Canadian specialty...anyone know what icing sugar is? Is that the same as powdered sugar? And vanilla custard powder- is that instant pudding? Looks tasty to me, no matter what!
I made the most delicious wonderful awesome spice cake last night!
Mmmm...nanaimo bars are a favourite of mine. Icing sugar is the same as confectioner's sugar or powered sugar. As for the vanilla custard powder, I would guess that's instant pudding but I'm not too sure.
Vanilla custard powder is not really pudding, it's like a powdered egg and sugar mixture to which you add heated milk. Bird's is the usual brand name, but I think you could substitute vanilla pudding powder too if you wished, or if it's handy. Custard powder has that damned tendency to form lumps, if you're not diligent about the temperature of the liquid, and this isn't much of a problem with the pudding powder.

Yay nanaimo bars.
Hi all. I don't know if anyone is familiar with Dutch cuisine, but I can hope.
I have been trying to convert my Oma's recipes to English, with ingredients available in America.
Is anyone here familiar with Speculaaskruiden? It's a blend of spices used in many dutch desserts and food in general. The only thing that most Americans are familiar with that it is in are Speculaas, molded almond cookies, aka windmill cookies.
Anyway, I was trying to use her recipe for Pepernoten, but I'm not sure what I can substitute for the speculaaskruiden. I know cloves and cinnamon, but beyond that, I dunno. My Oma just has the spices imported, but I am too poor/lazy to do that.

As for the shrimp, if you haven't cooked them yet; I would recommend using a small amount of old-fashioned crab boil, if they're really big. (Do you know what they are? We get alot of royal reds down here on the coast.) You just throw them in the pot with the boil and some potatoes and corn cobs, yum! Be careful about ventilation if you use boil, even if it's a small amount, those spices can get in your eyes and sinuses. If they aren't jumbos, then scampi is of course super-delicious, as well as quick and easy.
I am! My grandfather's mother was Dutch, and adored Dutch treats, so my grandmother learned Dutch baking from his mother.... Speculaaskruiden is a pretty easy spice blend to make. Like anything else, it's more what you've got and what you like than a precise recipe... and personally, I tend to make it with cinnamon, allspice berries, powdered ginger, whole cloves, black peppercorns, freshly grated nutmeg, and cardamom -- no mace or anise or coriander. And I use it all the time when I bake - I really like the combination of flavors.

30g ground cinnamon
10g ground allspice
10g powdered ginger
10g ground mace
5g ground cloves
5g ground coriander
5g ground nutmeg
pinch (or 2) of ground cardamon
ground anise seed, to taste
ground white pepper, to taste

And if you've not got a scale that can handle that small a mass, you can probably get a decent approximation with volumetric measurements, so, for instance...

2 Tbs: ground cinnamon
2 tsp/ea: ground allspice, powdered ("ground") ginger, ground mace
1 tsp/ea: ground cloves, ground coriander, ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp/ea: ground anise seed, ground white pepper
1/8 tsp: ground cardamom
That's exactly what I needed, thank you so much!
I'm the only person I know with a Dutch heritage, and these things can be so hard to find.
And yes, the flavors of Speculaaskruiden are just so...special. Awesome. thank you.
QUOTE(quantumspice @ Aug 27 2007, 07:38 PM) *
I made the most delicious wonderful awesome spice cake last night!

Please post the recipe, QS, and share the wealth?

Mmm... spice.
S'in my blog BUT that said, this weekend, I'm going to make a different version of it - crinoline's post reminded me of how much I love the flavors of speculaakruiden, and I'm going to remake it with 1 1/2-2 Tbs of that instead. (Plus, it's very lightly spiced, and I want it to be more in-your-face.)

Also, I don't think I mentioned it there, but I really don't care for the icing as written... I much prefer it the way I did it the first time I made the cake (substituting half and half for heavy cream, making it runnier; when I used the heavy cream, it was so clumpy it was hard to frost), as well as only using 1/2 the pecans and coconut listed -- I spread the icing on without the pecans and coconut, and sprinkled those on the top and sides of the cake afterwards.

I'm making maple-pecan-pear upside down cake tomorrow. Yee haw!
Qspice, ooohh, mouth watering.

drool drool
Q, thanks a bunch. Now I need a reason to make it. Is it a good cake as it stands if I just don't bother to make any icing at all?
Mmmm the cake is pretty delicately spiced - but that could be my tongue on overdrive from that icing, ya know? I'd definitely increase the spice mix, and probably brush it with a bit of rum when it's still hot, or be a total slacker and do the layers upside down cake style (with a bit of sugar and butter on the bottom of the pan before you throw in the batter), or do a quick and dirty dulce de leche by caramelizing some sweetened condensed milk ...
I love Quantum Spice's posts!! She's the mad culinary inventrix/scientist (pure scientist, I mean, not the kind who whores him/herself out to Betty Crocker for "grant" funding) of my dreams.

I checked out a Dutch grocery store in the next little town where I live and they have pre-mixed packets of Speculaaskruiden...but it looks like it would be a much better idea to just mix it yourself (they have dried herbs that they sell in bulk in the store, too). I can't read the labels (well, I think I can, but I'm just silly that way because pronouncing does not mean comprehension) and I've never had any idea what to use the spices for. After reading Quantum's recipes, though...I have missed out on a lot. I think I will try and use them to make something for Thanksgiving desert.

Crinoline, maybe there are other Dutch specialty stores near you? Places like this, which import foods from various parts of the world, are some of the best places to shop for ingredients of all kinds.

Awww. Thanks!

BTW, if you make a decently sized batch of speculaaskruiden and don't know what to do with it, it's *very* similar to pumpkin pie spice and apple pie spice blends.

Typical proportions for pumpkin pie spice include:
  • 12pt cinnamon; 4pt/ea: nutmeg, ginger, allspice.
  • 8pt cinnamon, 2pt nutmeg, 2pt ginger, 1pt clove.
  • 4pt cinnamon, 2pt nutmeg, 1pt clove.
  • 4pt cinnamon, 1pt/ea: ginger, nutmeg, clove.
  • 4pt cinnamon, 2pt ginger, 1pt nutmeg, 1pt clove;
  • 6pt cinnamon, 6pt ginger, 3pt nutmeg, 1pt allspice
The recipe for speculaaskruiden I mentioned below, combining the nutmeg and mace (since mace is the skin of the nutmeg seed), and without the coriander or anise: 12pt cinnamon, 6pt nutmeg, 4pt/ea allspice, ginger; 2pt cloves; 1/2pt/ea white pepper; 1/4 pt ground cardamom. Very similar indeed - in fact, the biggest difference is that it includes allspice AND cloves, and tosses in a hint of white pepper and cardamom.

Now, to me, it makes sense as a great substitution, because pepper is something that's always played well with cloves and cinnamon and nutmeg (though it seems like nobody has clued in on that in home-level cooking) and whenever I use cardamom in recipes, it's often with one of the other players, and I'm known to put a pinch into my pumpkin pie.

Chacha, were you looking for ingredients in the label reading? Here's some of the common words, from the recipes I had googled before (coz I don't speak/read/write Dutch, but with free online translators, I could readily translate the recipe)... gemalen (ground) zaad (seed), poeder (powder), kaneel (cinnamon), kruidnagel (clove), nootmuskaat (nutmeg), witte peper (white pepper), kardemom (cardamom), gemberpoeder (ginger powder == ground ginger), anijszaad (anise seed), korianderzaad (coriander seed), foelie (mace). So, for the most part, they are what they look like they would be.

In more personal cooking news, I ran into a recipe for pumpkin pound cake with a maple-pecan glaze that looks *divine* ... and is probably why the pumpkin pie spice was on my mind, because that's the only part of the recipe that made me twitch. It's all good, though, because I'm planning on using the last of my speculaaskruiden.

And I'm really sorry for those of you that read my blog feed, because I just installed an entry tagging thing last week, and I've been slowly going through all my recipes and tagging them, and my idiotic blog software decided that meant they had to be fresh on the feed. I like it, though, because then I can make all sorts of themes/collections with the recipes - by ingredient (such as spices), by cooking method (such as braising), by cuisine (such as Mexican)...
Had a nice salad with dinner.

1 C Quinoa
2 C Water

Toast quinoa in a dry pan until it smells like popcorn. Rinse it well. Dump back in pan, add water and boil for 12 minutes.


1 Jalapeño
1 Tomato, ripe as hell
One big or two small green onion(s)
1 Avocado

Seed and mince jalapeño. Chop tomato. Slice green onion (I sliced it kind of thick and it was good.) Chunk Avocado.

In a salad bowl, mix 1/4 C Olive Oil with 2 T Lime Juice. (We had key lime juice so that's what we used.) Add some salt, to taste. Plop in chopped veggies. (Cucumber would be a lovely addition, as would some cilantro or parsley)

Add cooked quinoa, toss well and chill all the way. Eat and smile.
I'm baaaaack! I've been absent for a few months here, while we remodeled our kitchen, and it just made me too sad to read about delicious things that I had no hope of making without a stove/sink etc.

Zora, I am totally going to make that salad this week! I got some spectacular tomatoes at the farmers market yesterday, and need some new ways to use them (half the time, I'll just eat one like an apple, with a little sprinkle of salt and pepper as I go. Mmmm...

I also need to catch up on qspice's blog again!

I'm going to throw together some kind of mexican chicken and rice this afternoon for dinner, with lots of black beans, and using brown rice. And, I think I might make some of these molasses cookies...probably my favorite kind of cookie ever. I do like to add some fresh ground pepper to mine as well, for a little extra zing.

Oh, and here's the before pics of the kitchen, and finally - my dream kitchen!
there ae two great things about remodeling. 1 getting to choose what colors/features etc. and 2 getting to have a kitchen that is all done and just how you want it.

i have been eating toasted and cooked millet and quinoa with various toppings. sooooo yummy!
A lady at work brought me like 7-8 pounds of tomatoes from her garden and I'm trying to use them before they go bad. It helps that Ben and I are trying to lose a lot of weight so we're eating more veggies, but my goodness. So many tomatoes. I think tonight we'll have fresh tomato sauce over angel hair.

We also had a tomato salad the other night out of Bourdain's Les Halles cookbook. It was tasty.

Does anyone here have any experience baking with Spelt?

I can do fine with it if I make pasta or pizza dough with it, or just use the grain in its kernel form to make a kind of cereal...but trying to find a way to make bread or the traditional foccaccia with it is just not working out.

I appeal to your much more refined and capable and knowledgeable baking abilities! Because my baking skills just suck.
zoya, fresh salsa! tomatoes, onion, garlic, cilantro, jalapeño pepper, lime juice, salt and pepper to taste. i have used many fresh tomatoes this way.
xposted in the general knowledge thread but want to get opinions:

i have some tilapia filets in the freezer that i'd forgotten about. it's been in there since april, wrapped in plastic and then in butcher's paper. it's been at the back of my freezer all this time. think it might still be safe to eat? i'm not sure of the shelf life of fish, as it usually doesn't last that long here...

thanks in advance!
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