jump to navigation

The Case of the Stolen Stollen October 24, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Humor, Word Play.
Tags: , , , ,
18 comments

Mystery Ride5bMy maternal grandfather loved puns, crosswords, and word play . . . like Toyota = Toy Auto.

He also loved Stollen Bread and received a loaf from my mother every Christmas for as long as he lived.

When I read Nancy Curteman’s post on Global Mysteries about The Isle of Guernsey, it struck me that the ingredients for a Guernsey Gache sounded like those for Stollen Bread.

I wondered whether the similarities stemmed from German occupation of Guernsey during World War II.

Could it be The Case of the Stolen Stollen?

There’s a mystery for Miss Marple!

Aah . . . that’s better!

ACK! I said the C-word and it’s not even half-past Halloween.

Puts fingers in ears and hums “LA~LA~LA~LA~LA” to drown out premature mention of the advent. :mrgreen:

Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookies October 16, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Humor, Vegetarian Recipes.
Tags: , , , ,
40 comments

This recipe comes to you courtesy of Nancy (“Keep moving!”) Tex:

They say it’s your birthday
Happy Birthday to Ya!

Happy Birthday NT!

* * *

As I read NT’s post, When Chickpeas and Chocolate Chips Collide, I knew I had to give these healthy high fiber cookies a try . . . with a few modifications because I am (a) a lazy cook who (b) loves rum:

* The recipe called for natural peanut butter.  I hate measuring peanut butter. With a passion.  It’s so S~T~I~C~K~Y!  I substituted 3/4 c. roasted salted peanuts (ground up peanuts => natural peanut butter).

* The recipe called for vanilla extract.  I’m not a baker and don’t keep vanilla extract in the pantry.   I do keep rum around.  Rum => Yum!

Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine 1 1/2 c. chickpeas (15 oz. can, drained and rinsed) with 3/4 c. roasted salted peanuts.  Pulse in your processor until almost smooth.

Add 2 tsp. vanilla extract (or rum), 1/4 c. honey (or agave or maple syrup), and 1 tsp baking powder.  Process until mixture forms a dough ball.

Toss the dough ball into a bowl.

2014-10-13 16-37-17_0015

Add 1/2 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips.

2014-10-13 16-37-30_0016

Fold the chips into the dough.

2014-10-13 16-38-47_0017

Form into 1 1/2″ balls and place on greased or parchment-lined cookie sheet.

2014-10-13 16-46-09_0019

Tip:  Use an ice cream scoop to scoop up the dough.

2014-10-13 16-40-50_0018

Press the tops down with a fork.

2014-10-13 16-47-16_0020

Bake for 10 minutes.  Try one to see if it’s done.

2014-10-13 16-59-21_0021

Press the tops down (again) and bake for 2 minutes more. Cool on a wire rack.

2014-10-13 17-05-31_0022

These are not quite as good as Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies BUT they are MUCH better for you.

They omit the empty calories (butter, white flour, and white sugar) and add in good-for-you protein and fiber from both peanuts and garbanzo beans.

Enjoy them.  Guilt free.

Aah . . . that’s better!

If you’re allergic to peanuts, you might try these with almonds and Amaretto or hazelnuts and Frangelica.

Multi-Grain Medley & Squash October 14, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Humor, Vegetarian Recipes.
Tags: , , , ,
27 comments

Minute Rice has a new Multi-Grain Medley of Brown Rice, Wheat, Quinoi, Rye, Oats, and Barley.

2014-10-13 18-01-38_0023

Intrigued, I picked up a packet ~ 6 grams of fiber per serving.  Awesome!  By way of comparison, plain white rice has a scant 1 gram of fiber per serving.

I haven’t bought Minute Rice since before Ronald Reagan was President, but I decided to give the Multi-Grain Medley a try because the idea of cooking up Brown Rice, Wheat, Quinoi, Rye, Oats, AND Barley seemed too time intensive.

In contrast, the Minute Rice Medley takes only a minute to heat and eat.

Multi-Grain Medley & Summer Squash

2014-10-13 18-08-22_0024

Saute onion, carrot, celery in olive oil.  Add sliced summer squash.  Cook until tender. Stir in 2 cups cooked grain (rice, barley, quinoi, or multi-grain medley).

2014-10-07 09-19-59_0001

Season with salt, garlic, and turmeric (or 1/2 c. of Tikki Masala).

Add a healthy splash of wine.  Toss in some raisins.  Let it simmer until the raisins plump.

If you have cooked green beans hanging around, toss them into the mix.

2014-10-07 19-03-51_0004

Sprinkle some peanuts on top to add crunch factor.

Aah . . . that’s better!

A Rooftop Happy Hour October 9, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Happiness, Humor, Travel & Leisure.
Tags: , , , ,
51 comments

On Sunday, as we headed back to our car, I snapped this inviting bench outside a local watering hole.

2014-10-05 15-31-07_0034

Caught up in the flow of the day, the bench caused an immediate craving for a cold adult beverage.  So we headed to the Chart House to enjoy Happy Hour under the impossibly blue sky.

2014-10-05 16-15-45_0035

Situated on the Rooftop Deck, we ordered a trio of appetizers and two drinks.

I planned to take a photo when they arrived, but I forgot.  So instead of a gorgeous presentation like this:

2014-06-16 12-23-23_0003

Or like this:

IMGP3195b

Or like this:

2013-11-14 17-38-02_0002

I snapped the last two Fried Artichoke Hearts with Lemon Basil Aioli:

2014-10-05 17-07-09_0037

And the tail end of the plate of yummy Hummus:

2014-10-05 17-07-14_0038

And the last few Truffled Fries and Friends (after the Friends got eaten):

2014-10-05 17-07-19_0039

So you’ll have to take my word for it ~ they looked as good as they tasted!

Aah . . . that’s better!

How NOT To Cook A Turkey October 5, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Fun & Games, Humor.
Tags: , , , ,
36 comments

In letters written by my grandfather to dad in the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s, my grandfather mentioned getting up early to dress the turkey for Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings.

Most years, his calculations resulted in a stuffed bird ready to be eaten at the appointed hour.

But not always.

In 1971, he wrote my dad the day after Christmas to say:

The Royces were here in time for the gifts.  Previously, I started the turkey at 5:45.  Let it rest in the oven during gifts.

When I took it out it was OK ~ OK but the meat was off the bone, in the bottom of the roaster, all ready to lift out with a fork.  Which I did and filled the platter with delicate hunks.

The dressing was contained by the skeleton and I could see right in to get it out fine.  The dressing was dry and well seasoned with sage from the garden.   They were so hungry by then it was a big success and they cleaned the platter.

It was a happy day.

In the same letter, he shared a moment about his wife Margaret’s Christmas:

She insisted she could not be happy with anything except a new toilet seat.  I tried to tell her what a good one the old one was.

No Soap.  It just had to be.

I dangled a new watch, diamonds, a few dresses, another coat ~ No, A Toilet Seat.

IMGP2057

I had Hi bring one down from Shepards.  I worked all one forenoon trying to remove the old.  It clung to its position till in desperation I cut the bolts with a hacksaw.

The new one went on better and Margaret got a new set of table linen for it.  It sure looks nice especially the bib about the base.

I don’t long for the old days and old ways.  I recall how the wind whistled in the olds . . . out in the shed.

Public Toilets ~ Wikipedia (in Public Domain)

Aah . . . indoor plumbing . . . that’s better!

Mint Juleps September 23, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Vegetarian Recipes.
Tags: , , , ,
32 comments

Although I’ve mentioned Mint Juleps in a number of posts, I’ve never shared the recipe ~ a fact I discovered when I offered to share it with Kate Shrewsday after her recent visit to Charleston.

2014-09-14 17-39-44_4

Mint Julep

1 jigger (more or less) Simple Syrup with Mint
1 jigger bourbon
crushed ice

Fill a tall glass or silver julep cup with crushed ice.  Add a jigger of Simple Syrup and a jigger of bourbon.  Stir.  Ice will melt and meld with the drink.

Garnish with 2-4 large sprigs of fresh mint.  Sip, don’t gulp.

Simple Syrup

Pour 1/2 cup boiling water over 1/2 cup sugar; stir until sugar dissolves.  Stir in 1/4 cup lightly packed fresh mint leaves (or, in a pinch, 1/4 c. dried mint).

Chill at least 4 hours.  Strain. Store covered in the fridge.  Makes about 3/4 cup ~ enough for 3-6 Mint Juleps.

2014-09-14 17-40-07_0004

Aah . . . that’s better! 

The Benjamin Franklin Diet September 22, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Books & Movies, Food & Drink, Vegetarian Recipes.
Tags: , , , ,
36 comments

While scouting the library stacks for inspiration, I stumbled upon an interesting diet book . . .

I added it to the stack of books in my arms, ignoring the oft quoted adage and admonition . . . “neither a borrower nor a lender be.”

At home, I settled down to learn about Ben’s diet.

* At a young age, Ben swore off meat and quaffing pints of ale so as to have more money to spend on books.

* In so doing, he noted that he felt better and had greater mental clarity after meals consisting of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.

* He also noticed that he felt better when he exercised for 15 minutes before each meal.  If the weather wasn’t being cooperative, he spent his 15 minutes leaping inside the house ~ forward and back or side to side.

In addition to the fascinating narrative of Ben’s life philosophy, the author, Kelly Wright, collected and shared a number of colonial recipes for grains, soups, stews, game, and sweet fare, including:  Hasty Pudding, Dauphiny Soup, Oatcakes, Classic Colonial Bread, Hoecakes, Tavern Bread, and Garlic and Herb Cream Cheese Spread.

Inspired, I whipped up a loaf of Mrs. Wright’s Beer Bread in minutes.

2014-09-19 17-55-47_0001

Combine 3 cups whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup raw sugar, 1 Tbsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. salt.  Stir in a bottle (12 ounces) of beer or ale.

Pour into a greased and floured 9 x 5 loaf pan.

2014-09-19 17-59-06_0002

Bake at 375 degrees for 35 minutes.

2014-09-19 18-48-28_0003

“Hunger never saw bad bread.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

Delighted with the result, I followed Ben’s lead and leaped and leapt about.

Aah . . . that’s better! 

To learn more:  The Benjamin Franklin Diet (Book) * The Benjamin Franklin Diet (Website)

Jalapeno Cornbread September 18, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Vegetarian Recipes.
Tags: , , ,
33 comments

2014-09-15 19-08-05_0005

Yes . . . we are continuing to carb load.

Man cannot live by bagels alone!

Jalapeno Cornbread

Heat over to 425 degrees.

Grease baking dish with butter or oil and place in oven to pre-heat. I use a round pottery baking dish but a 8-9″ square baking dish would work.

1 1/4 c. stoneground cornmeal
1/2 c. all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder (or 1 tsp. and 1 egg)
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2-4 tsp. sugar (or brown sugar)

Sift together dry ingredients in large bowl.

1 1/2 c. almond milk
2 T. butter (or 1 T. oil)
5-6 roasted jalapenos (or 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes)

Whisk wet ingredients. Combine wet and dry ingredients. Pour into heated baking pan. Bake 25 minutes at 425.

2014-09-15 19-21-40_0007

Aah . . . that’s better!

Bagels September 16, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Home & Garden, Vegetarian Recipes.
Tags: , , , ,
34 comments

2014-09-03 13-45-36_0001

1 cup warm water
1 1/2 Tbsp. honey or maple syrup
3 cups bread flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. yeast
1 1/2 tsp. oil

Mix and knead the dough (or let your bread maker do it for you).  Let it rise for 20 minutes.  Turn out onto a floured surface.

Divide the dough in 8-12 pieces.  [I made 12 the first time.  Too small.]

2014-09-03 14-31-23_0003

Roll each piece into a rope and form into a circle, pressing ends together.

2014-09-03 14-37-02_0005

Place on well-greased baking sheet, cover with a warm/damp towel and let rise for 15-20 minutes.

2014-09-03 14-47-14_0007

Heat oven to 450 degrees.  Admire your Pillsbury Dough Boys . . .

2014-09-03 15-23-00_0009

In a large non-aluminum pan, boil 3-4 inches of water.  Lower 3-4 bagels at a time into simmering water.  Cook 15-30 seconds each side.

2014-09-03 15-24-45_0010

Remove bagels, drain excess water.

2014-09-03 15-28-26_0012

Place bagels on a well-greased cookie sheet (or pre-heated pizza stone).

2014-09-03 15-32-01_0013

Bake 8 minutes.  [For larger bagels, turn bagels over and bake another 4-6 minutes until lightly browned on both sides.]

2014-09-03 15-58-58_0014

Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack.  Cool.

2014-09-03 16-03-59_0015

Yield: 12 small bagels (or 8 large bagels).

2014-09-03 16-14-55_0017

Yes.  One of the dozen is M.I.A. ~ wherever did it go?

Aah . . . that’s better!

Festivals of India September 9, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Fun & Games, Music & Dance.
Tags: , , , , ,
39 comments

On Saturday, we enjoyed Indian Dancing, Music, Costumes and Food in air-conditioned comfort at India Fest 2014.

2014-09-06 15-18-47_0032

The theme of the festival focused on eight major festivals in India:

Uttarayan ~ kite flying and rooftop picnics to celebrate winter’s end
Baisakhi ~ celebrated in different ways by Sikhs, Hindus, and Buddhists
Pongal ~ celebrants greet milk boiling over with shouts of “Pongalo Pongal”
Holi ~ marking the first full moon in Spring with clouds of colored powder
Ganesh Chaturthi ~ celebrating the birth day of Lord Ganesha
Onam ~ festival of rain, flowers, and rice harvest
Navratri ~ celebrated over nine nights around harvest time in October
Diwali ~ festival of lights illuminating the country with brilliance

2014-09-06 15-06-42_0019

After a brief history of each festival, lithe and limber dancers in elaborate and elegant costumes performed traditional dances to traditional music.

2014-09-06 15-12-47_0024

Each dance ended amid appreciative applause.

2014-09-06 15-13-54_0027

After the dancing and music, all performers returned to the stage for the singing of India’s national anthem.

2014-09-06 15-18-08_0030

A bejeweled Lord Ganesh watched over the festival.

2014-09-06 15-06-48_0020

POLICE watched over Lord Ganesh and his jewels.

2014-09-06 15-06-36_0018

After the music and dancing, attendees wandered the food stalls and the bazaar, stopping to gape at colorful plumage.

2014-09-06 16-16-16_0038

We  sampled Spring Rolls, Samosas, and Bhel Puri (a favorite street food in Mumbai featuring puffed rice, peanuts, tomatoes, tamarind sauce, potatoes, mint, cilantro chutney, onions, cumin, chili powder, lemon juice, chaat masala, sel, papdis, etc.).

2014-09-06 15-56-09_0033

Before leaving we stopped for a photo op with that gorgeous peacock we spied earlier ~> his plumage matched my skirt!

2014-09-06 16-14-46_0035

Aah . . . that’s better!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,055 other followers