could anyone please explain why balching the garlic is a good idea? or more to the point, what does it do to help / change the flavor? and/or how does it change / help the flavor?
Roast Cornish Hen with Sautéed Blueberries and Garlic
Here's a stunning dish using fresh Oregon Jurassic Blueberries; and as always pre-heat your oven to 420 and turn up the live Grateful Dead Music.
Peace on Earth, Love Each Other and Eat Massive JurassicBlueberries
• 2 Cornish game hens or squabs, halved (about 3 pounds)
• 2 tablespoons Balsamic vinegar
• 1 teaspoon Salt
• 1/4 teaspoon Ground black pepper
• 16 Garlic cloves, peeled
• 2 tablespoons Unsalted butter, divided
• 2 tablespoons Honey
• 6 Thyme sprigs
• 1/3 cup Minced shallots
• 2 cups Fresh blueberries
• 1 tablespoon Red wine vinegar
lower Preheated oven to 375ºF. Rub hens with balsamic vinegar; season with salt and pepper. Place on a rack in a roasting pan; roast until thigh juices run clear, about 35 minutes.
To prepare garlic: Blanch cloves in boiling water.
In a skillet, combine 1 tablespoon of the butter, the honey, thyme, garlic and 1/2 cup water. Simmer until liquid is reduced to a syrup and garlic turns golden brown, stirring often, about 20 minutes; remove thyme sprigs.
To prepare sautéed blueberries: In a skillet, over medium heat, melt the remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Add shallots; cook and stir until tender, about 3 minutes. Add blueberries; cook until they soften, about 4 minutes. Stir in red wine vinegar; simmer until mixture has a saucy consistency, about 2 minutes.
To serve: Arrange each hen half on wilted escarole, if desired. Spoon sautéed blueberries and sweet garlic cloves around hens.
YIELD: 8 portions (about 2 cups sauce)
just had to look that one up
"Where was pesto 10 years ago??"
Marye just requested this so here it is.
SOUPE AU PISTOU (French Pesto Soup)
Learned to make this when I was 14, helping out in a restaurant in Provence. Never written it down so not sure about quantities and don’t understand US cups, but this should work
STEP 1. MAKE PISTOU (can do while making soup)
Big double handful of fresh basil (2 cups?).2, 3, 4 or more garlic cloves as you wish. 100g of tomato paste plus a squirt of tomato ketchup. Black pepper. Put it all in a blender and slowly add olive oil till it becomes a paste. You can buy jars of pesto but French Pistou does not normally have parmesan or pine nuts and this soup for me is better without. Some delis sell jars of just the basil, garlic, olive oil paste.
STEP 2 MAKE SOUP
2 x medium leeks 2 x fresh sweet carrots, 2 x stems of fresh celery, 1 x Courgette, 1 x Medium waxy potato all diced all into ¼ - ½ inch pieces. Small handful of fine green beans (½ inch pieces).
Sweat veggies in a big heavy pan on a low heat with a good big splash of olive oil and the lid on for 10 minutes or so, stirring now and then. Then add enough chicken stock (home made is best) or good veggie stock to cover everything plus an inch or so (around 2 pints maybe). Add 2 bayleaves, sprig of thyme lots of black pepper.
Gently boil with lid off for 10-15 minutes or so till veggies just cooked but not mushy. Do not overcook.
Add one 20oz drained can of white haricot beans (or well cooked ones prepared from dry).
Top up with more stock or water if necessary, enough for it to be soup, but still quite packed with veggies. Add a bunch of chopped oregano if you want (I do) . Bring back to the boil just till the white beans are heated through (a few minutes only). Do not overstir or mush up the beans and veggies. Check salt (stock can be quite salty enough already).
Remove the soup from the heat. You can then stir the pistou into the pot and serve immediately, or it can be fun to put the bowl of pistou in the middle of table, serve the soup good and hot and everyone can stir in a big spoon of pistou into their bowls. I serve with garlic croutons (cubes of stale bread dry fried with chopped garlic).
not my origianl writing, but interesting and who knows if it is true??
A professor at CCNY for a physiological psych class told his class about bananas. He said the expression "going bananas" is from the effects of bananas on the brain. Read on:
Bananas contain three natural sugars - sucrose, fructose and glucose combined with fiber. A banana gives an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy.
Research has proven that just two bananas provide enough energy for a strenuous 90-minute workout. No wonder the banana is the number one fruit with the world's leading athletes.
But energy isn't the only way a banana can help us keep fit. It can also help overcome or prevent a substantial number of illnesses and conditions, making it a must to add to our daily diet.
Depression: According to a recent survey undertaken by MIND amongst people suffering from depression, many felt much better after eating a banana. This is because bananas contain tryptophan, a type of protein that the body converts into serotonin, known to make you relax, improve your mood and generally make you feel happier.
PMS: Forget the pills - eat a banana. The vitamin B6 it contains regulates blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood.
Anemia: High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in cases of anemia.
Blood Pressure: This unique tropical fruit is extremely high in potassium yet low in salt, making it perfect to beat blood pressure. So much so, the US Food and Drug Administration has just allowed the banana industry to make official claims for the fruit's ability to reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke.
Brain Power: 200 students at a Twickenham (Middlesex) school were helped through their exams this year by eating bananas at breakfast, break, and lunch in a bid to boost their brain power. Research has shown that the potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils more alert.
Constipation: High in fiber, including bananas in the diet can help restore normal bowel action, helping to overcome the problem without resorting to laxatives.
Hangovers: One of the quickest ways of curing a hangover is to make a banana milkshake, sweetened with honey. The banana calms the stomach and, with the help of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels, while the milk soothes and re-hydrates your system.
Heartburn: Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from heartburn, try e ating a banana for soothing relief.
Morning Sickness: Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness.
Mosquito bites: Before reaching for the insect bite cream, try rubbing the affected area with the inside of a banana skin. Many people find it amazingly successful at reducing swelling and irritation.
Nerves: Bananas are high in B vitamins that help calm the nervous system.
Overweight and at work? Studies at the Institute of Psychology in Austria found pressure at wor k leads to gorging on comfort food like chocolate and crisps. Looking at 5,000 hospital patients, researchers found the most obese were more likely to be in high-pressure jobs. The report concluded that, to avoid panic-induced food cravings, we need to control our blood sugar le vels by snacking on high carbohydrate foods every two hours to keep levels steady.
Ulcers: The banana is used as the dietary food against intestinal disorders because of its soft texture and smoothness. It is the only raw fruit that can be eaten without distress in over-chronicler cases. It also neutralizes over-acidity and reduces irritation by coating the lining of the stomach.
Temperature control: Many other cultures see bananas as a "cooling" fruit that can lower both the physical and emotional temperature of expectant mothers. In Thailand , for example, pregnant women eat bananas to ensure their baby is born with a cool temperature.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD): Bananas can help SAD sufferers because they contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan.
Smoking &Tobacco Use: Bananas can also help people trying to give up smoking. The B6, B12 they contain, as well as the potassium and magnesium found in them, help the body recover from the effects of nicotine withdrawal. < BR>
Stress: Potassium is a vital mineral, which helps normalize the heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain and regulates your body's water balance. When we are stressed, our metabolic rate rises, thereby reducing our potassium levels. These can be rebalanced with the help of a high-potassium banana snack.
Strokes: According to research in The New En gland Journal of Medicine, eating bananas as part of a regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%!
Warts: Those keen on natural alternatives swear that if you want to kill off a wart, take a piece of banana skin and place it on the wart, with the yellow side out. Carefully hold the skin in place with a plaster or surgical tape!
So, a banana really is a natural remedy for many ills. When you compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and minerals. It is also rich in potassium and is one of the best value foods around So maybe its time to change that well-known phrase so that we say, "A banana a day keeps the doctor away!"
PS: Bananas must be the reason monkeys are so happy all the time! I will add one here; want a quick shine on our shoes?? Take the INSIDE of the banana skin, and rub directly on the shoe...polish with dry cloth. Amazing fruit !
"What's the point of calling shots, this cue ain't straight in line
Cue balls made of styrofoam and no-one's got the time"
yeah, it is hard to find the proper ingredients, outside of big American cities that have large Asian or in particular, Thai / Lao / Cambodian populations. We were "cheaters" in cooking Thai food for many years, using the pastes or mixes that you can buy in any Thai supermarket or many Asian markets in the west. But you are only cheating yourself, as my third grade teacher used to say as she chided me for using a cheat sheet on spelling tests. The difference in taste is astounding. It is a damn shame that many Thai cookbooks published in the west all too often steer people to obtainable ingredients rather than the 'proper' ingredients; like substituting ketchup (loud SHHHEEEESH!!) instead of what it should be...
Many of the Thai restaurants in the US are in fact run by Cambodians, since the refugee populations could get to America while it remains really hard for Thais to get Visas to visit America - let alone, try to emmigrate there. Funny thing is, Cambodian food is quite different, but certainly not as popular in the US as Thai food.
oh, to THE MAN with the pistol on his belt and absolutely NO CIVIL LIBERTIES for anyone in that 'no man's land' of customs and immigration. Legally (?) officially, they can do just about anything they want to, searching, x-rays, keeping you locked up for hours if not days on end as they 'investigate' While I respect folks who have a serious job to do, it is a bad place to be especially after being trapped in a tin can of a plane for 20 hours or more.
I'm on a first name basis (not by choice) with a lot of people in Customs since we get the secondary soft search almost everytime we travel back and forth. Luckily, we've never had to endure the 'hard' search into body cavities or x-rays; but our profile fits, so they hassle us. Only Hawaii seriously restricts importing veggies / plants / fruit etc. so we have to be careful about the routing and such. It is kind of funny, because most of the dogs you see in Honolulu / Hilo / Kona are trained to smell fruit. One friend had a gift of some dried fruit or something, the cute little pooch trotted right over to her and sat down -- she, being a dog lover, knelt down to let him smell her hand and pet him, and then she was taken behind the green door.
this was the place, and my old lady was really happy with the whole deal. several hundred dollars in cost, only about 7 or 8 students in her class which was taught in Thai language and English (my old lady's Thai ain't that good) all of her classmates were Thai people who hope to work in a fancy hotel in Thailand or open their own restaurant at home or abroad. As Thais are generally an easy going, fun bunch of folks; she really, really had a grate time--
but people kept asking her "what are those little bears and turtles on your apron??"
next trip she wants to do the Thai dessert course, and who am I not to say 'absolutely! fucking do it!!' ??
One good thing about the Bay Area is that it's probably easier to get a lot of those ingredients here than in many other places in the U.S. But probably not all of them. Good luck with customs and good luck with future agricultural efforts!
without a doubt, Thai food is my all time fave among Asian cuisines, and (brag brag) my old lady just graduated (certificate in hand) from her Intensive Thai Cooking Course in what is the Culinary Institute of Bangkok. She would cook up all sorts of delicious stuff from scratch-- none of that "add green curry paste" shit, she was pounding those chillis until they begged for mercy from her mortar and pestle (sic) and then bring it back to our crib for dinner. mmm mmm good.
when SHE gets her act together (be prepared to wait a while -- in other words) and when we get somewhere with some tech equipment, we'll try to scan the recipes and post them up... but be prepared to go on a scavenger hunt for the ingredients -- half of that stuff I've never even heard of. We packed a bag full of LEGAL Thai herbs, roots, seeds, spices, etc. to take home.
think we'll have trouble at Customs back in the world??!!