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BS: Recipes - what are we eating?

Jos 11 Mar 19 - 02:49 AM
leeneia 10 Mar 19 - 11:18 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Mar 19 - 08:02 PM
Jon Freeman 10 Mar 19 - 01:43 PM
leeneia 09 Mar 19 - 11:24 AM
leeneia 09 Mar 19 - 11:23 AM
Stilly River Sage 08 Mar 19 - 11:35 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Mar 19 - 06:38 PM
Mrrzy 08 Mar 19 - 10:50 AM
Jon Freeman 08 Mar 19 - 09:26 AM
Big Al Whittle 08 Mar 19 - 05:50 AM
leeneia 07 Mar 19 - 10:07 AM
Mrrzy 07 Mar 19 - 08:53 AM
Donuel 07 Mar 19 - 06:13 AM
Steve Shaw 07 Mar 19 - 05:09 AM
Stilly River Sage 06 Mar 19 - 09:17 PM
Big Al Whittle 06 Mar 19 - 02:21 PM
Charmion 06 Mar 19 - 12:53 PM
leeneia 06 Mar 19 - 11:57 AM
Stilly River Sage 06 Mar 19 - 11:45 AM
Stilly River Sage 05 Mar 19 - 01:07 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Mar 19 - 05:22 PM
Mrrzy 02 Mar 19 - 08:54 AM
Stilly River Sage 02 Mar 19 - 12:39 AM
Charmion 01 Mar 19 - 11:14 AM
Steve Shaw 28 Feb 19 - 05:13 PM
Donuel 28 Feb 19 - 03:36 PM
Jos 28 Feb 19 - 02:58 PM
Steve Shaw 28 Feb 19 - 01:35 PM
Donuel 28 Feb 19 - 08:23 AM
Donuel 28 Feb 19 - 08:10 AM
BobL 24 Feb 19 - 07:46 AM
Thompson 23 Feb 19 - 11:11 PM
Jon Freeman 23 Feb 19 - 11:34 AM
Stilly River Sage 23 Feb 19 - 11:24 AM
Jon Freeman 23 Feb 19 - 11:18 AM
Jos 23 Feb 19 - 11:02 AM
Jon Freeman 23 Feb 19 - 09:20 AM
Mrrzy 22 Feb 19 - 03:23 PM
Thompson 22 Feb 19 - 12:32 PM
Mrrzy 22 Feb 19 - 08:53 AM
Thompson 21 Feb 19 - 03:17 AM
Charmion 20 Feb 19 - 06:40 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Feb 19 - 11:30 AM
Jon Freeman 20 Feb 19 - 06:17 AM
Stilly River Sage 19 Feb 19 - 10:32 PM
Steve Shaw 19 Feb 19 - 09:10 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Feb 19 - 08:59 PM
Donuel 19 Feb 19 - 08:07 PM
Steve Shaw 19 Feb 19 - 07:47 PM
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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jos
Date: 11 Mar 19 - 02:49 AM

I think I might replace the 'smoke flavor' and the garlic powder (neither of which I have) with smoked paprika and with garlic.
I can't eat guacamole (much as I would love too) so perhaps a few slices of tomato instead.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: leeneia
Date: 10 Mar 19 - 11:18 PM

I think I'll try those fajitas. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Mar 19 - 08:02 PM

I had two beautiful organic bell peppers that needed to be used soon so I took ribeye steak out of the freezer, used the rest of an onion in the fridge, and made a batch of fajitas (served in tortillas that I buy from a bakery up the street and freeze a few hours after they were made). I didn't want to set up the grill outside so I added some smoke flavor, a little Hoisin sauce, and salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Saute the beef but take it out still pink, then fry the onions and peppers in the oil the beef seasoned. Add it all back together for a couple of minutes and it's dinner. (The term "fajita" is "skirt" in Spanish, and these are traditionally made with skirt state that is grilled then sliced thin. I didn't have that, but I did slice the steak very thin.) Everything is cut into long strips to cook and it lines up easily in the tortilla. I topped them with some Tapatio hot sauce and a couple of tablespoons of guacamole on each one.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 10 Mar 19 - 01:43 PM

I did my dad a “birthday treat” on Friday. It had been a long day for him as he had an appointment at the city hospital and (accompanied by mum) was away from about 2pm, getting back a while after 7pm. I suggested that as it was so late that some (deep fried frozen chunky) chips and I for one had snacked might be nice. I then learned that he’d asked on the way home in the ambulance if he could have chips when he got home! Sometimes the simplest of things are the best.


Another OT thing. One I was pondering a couple of months ago and don't think I've mentioned here... My basic attempts are in a fairly small but I’d think reasonably well equipped kitchen and based around cooking for three. I wonder how people do more of more with less.

I think the hardest kitchen we had would have been the original (I later managed to move the kitchen out to an existing extension) kitchen in the second house we lived when in N Wales. It was a long thin corridor of a room with a spiral ring radiant electric cooker at one end and the sink at the other. I don’t remember anything in the way of work top space other than a little around the sink side. Microwaves weren’t around (or at least not a common feature of a UK kitchen) then.

She’d still manage to present a 3 course Christmas dinner with all the trimmings (and touches like glazed carrots, etc. as well as something veggie for herself) probably for ten (six in the immediate family for starters) with everything served perfectly warm.

Maybe it’s easy to some but the juggling acts I’d think it must involve seem beyond me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: leeneia
Date: 09 Mar 19 - 11:24 AM

Big Al - about that ham. Was it pre-cooked or not? Sometimes it's hard to tell from the packaging.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: leeneia
Date: 09 Mar 19 - 11:23 AM

I love avocados. I don't peel them, however. I scoop the flesh out with a teaspoon. It's easy and leaves only a thin film of flesh behind.

I like the sound of your recipe for avocado toast, Steve.
============

Yesterday my Dear Husband hoisted himself into the dark, dusty attic of my old church to check for leaks and seal up new holes. I thanked him and asked, "Would you like something special for dinner as a reward?"

I had some possibilities in mind: roast pork with baked sweet potatoes, steak aux poivre, baked chicken with herbes de Provence... He had his own possibility; he wanted tuna and noodles.

the DH's tuna and noodles

Boil up some noodles or other form of pasta
While pasta is getting ready, drain one can of tuna in water
Make a cup of cream sauce
Chop or grate 3/4 cup cheddar cheese or other cheese of your choice Melt the cheese in the hot cream sauce
When pasta is done and drained, mix the drained tuna, cheesy sauce and noodles in a big serving bowl. Serve.

We haven't made this in 25 years. To me, tuna and noodles is a recipe for kids. The DH used to make it without the cream sauce. He simple threw the cheese onto the hot noodles, which clumped together in blobs. I like this way better.

It seems to me that some herb or flavoring ought to be added, but I don't know what.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Mar 19 - 11:35 PM

I wait till avocados are on sale then I let them ripen and make a large batch of guacamole and freeze it in ice cube trays. These are then stored in a freezer zip lock bag, and when needed I one or two cubes and let them defrost at room temperature or carefully zap them a few seconds at a time in the microwave. There is so much oil in them that it doesn't take long to soften. Don't put tomatoes in guacamole you're going to freeze, they are weird when it thaws.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Mar 19 - 06:38 PM

I told you about that stash of extra avocados I accidentally bought. Well I peeled a couple of them tonight (they were perfect) and mashed them up roughly with a fork. I added a good squeeze of lime juice, a small pinch of chilli flakes and some salt and pepper and mixed it all up. I set that aside for an hour. Then I took a good handful of some particularly nice cherry toms (I bought them in M&S and tried to ignore the fact that they were almost certainly grown in the plasticos in Almería province in Spain), chopped them into little pieces and put them in a bowl with a little bit of my very finest Tuscan extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt.

Next, I took a few slices of panna Pugliese, a lovely, elastic, gluten-rich toasting bread from Puglia (you can buy it in Waitrose). You could use a good ciabatta instead. While the grill was heating, I basted, very slightly, each slice with a garlicky olive oil of my own making (easy - just smash a garlic clove with your fist and soak it in a few glugs of olive oil for a bit). Grill the toast on one side, flip then baste the other side and grill again. Cut the toast into pick-uppable pieces and top some with the avo mix and the rest with the tomato mix. Sprinkle a bit of chopped cilantro or parsley (I used parsley out of my garden) on the avo toasts and, optional, some baby basil leaves on the tomato toasts. An extra drizzle of your best olive oil on the tomato toasts is a sine qua non.

I'll tell you what. This is SO easy. The whole thing took me twenty minutes (and I've never done it before). It's food fit for a king, it fills you up, it goes great with any wine of a Friday night and it's vegan to boot!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 08 Mar 19 - 10:50 AM

Help! Savoury pie for Pi Day ideas? Not sheperd's.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 08 Mar 19 - 09:26 AM

I remember when about 19/20, trying to grab every overtime hour on offer. I was setting and operating machines making ball pins for track rod ends then. I made a few mistakes including starting a machine up on myself and figured I was becoming a danger to myself and those around me.

More recently, my sleep has been erratic with nights with no sleep for quite a while. It does affect me but I don’t think it’s led to mistakes in cooking recently. That’s mum’s department lately. She stuck a load of sauce to the bottom of my favourite pan the other day. Yesterday’s casualty was MaMade and the big pan. A lot of the marmalade was salvageable but a bit discoloured. I think the remaining stuff should clean out of the pot with another go today. I think we put these down to another enemy, stress…

Onto food. I did try the Sag Aloo last week. A couple of changes: I opted to use a salad (said Jazzy on the packet) potato instead of the Maris Piper and didn’t bother peeling, mild chill powder (fearing the other might be to hot for here) and the whole packet (500 vs 400g) of spinach. The illustration seems to show small chunks of aubergine but mine (not that I mind this) wound up as part of the gravy. It was liked here and is one I’ll do again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 08 Mar 19 - 05:50 AM

I don't know why I'm screwing up.

1) I left a pasta bake in the oven so long the cheese top was like a frisbee. Couldn't get your teeth into it.

2) I basted a ham i honey/clove powder and brown sugar. Then to warm it up before serving. I microwaved it. The knife, I'd just had sharpened literally bounced off it. Another recipe that defied humam dentistry.

that's so far. I'm not sure its lack of sleep. I sleep, but I'm still on 'musician's hours'.. I was still gigging occasionally up to last month. Though its about six years since i did it as a full time job.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: leeneia
Date: 07 Mar 19 - 10:07 AM

Big Al, you say you are making mistakes. The first question is, Are you getting enough sleep? Think about it.
=========
I just read a book about the brain, and it said that brain states persist. I find that sleep persists in my brain. That is, after I wake up, I remain foggy for a while. I wait to take a shower (which requires good balance), take medication or drive until I know I am fully awake.

This would apply to cooking, too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 07 Mar 19 - 08:53 AM

Stilly River Sage, once the cilantro is in the bag, throw that nasty stuff away, bag and all. Parsley I preserve in garlic butter...

Yes, I have the genetic deficiency of Cilantro Is Repulsive.

Just kidding for you others.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Mar 19 - 06:13 AM

I like to make sweet and hot or sweet and sour chicken stews.
I start with pre cooked chicken.

The sweet is crushed and chunk pineapple and the sour is aa little vinegar.
The hot ingredient is up to you and the rest is all your favorite veggies. I use piquant hot sauce, sausage bits and a touch of ghost pepper.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Mar 19 - 05:09 AM

That's a good idea. I do the same thing with parsley, which is just as good out of the freezer as fresh as long as you don't need it for a sprinkly green appearance on top of the finished dish. I just had a breakfast of two mini-piada (Italian flatbreads), heated in a dry pan then used as a sort of sandwich with a squashed avocado in the middle. I didn't think I'd enjoy it as I was just using up excess purchases, but it was very nice. I suppose I could have manned up the avo with some seasoning and lemon. I'd needed two ripe avocados last night but Sainsbury's were selling off all their ripe 'n' readies half price. You do have to be suspicious of avocados at times (stringy, blackened middles) so, considering the cheap price, I bought extra. They are all perfect, so I now have a stash. I can afford another avocado brekkie tomorrow and I might make my chunky guacamole for Friday. Or we could have a tricolore salad, with slices of avocado, halved cherry tomatoes (the southern European ones have been good all winter) and chopped-up mozzarella, dressed with the finest extra virgin olive oil and a dash of freshly-ground black pepper. Tricolore because it has the three colours of the Italian flag. It's a bit like an insalata Caprese but with cojones...

I rarely bother with buffalo mozzarella. It's expensive and a bit too milky-sloppy for me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Mar 19 - 09:17 PM

Charmion, wash the cilantro, pull the leaves off of the stems, then fill a heavy-duty ziplock bag with the leaves. Zip it almost completely closed and then press down on the bag to remove as much air as possible and finish the zip close. Freeze that flat green bag, and any time you need some, go through the rapid operation of opening the bag and breaking off a chunk of the leaves. Put the bag in the freezer as soon as possible and before the chunk has thawed, give it a rough crumble with your fingers and palms into whatever you're cooking. It's as close to fresh as you'll get if you don't want to buy fresh and toss out 90% of it each time. The entire operation has to take about 20 seconds or the bag and the broken piece begin to rapidly soften.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 06 Mar 19 - 02:21 PM

I've made some really shit meals recently. Really sodding stupid mistakes.

I just do really stupid things sometimes! Idiot!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 06 Mar 19 - 12:53 PM

It’s Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. Every year, Himself and I undertake some form of dietary discipline during this season, and this year, as well as booze, we’re avoiding meat. So I brought Madhur Jaffrey’s “Vegetarian India” upstairs and turned out the pantry to see what we have in the way of lentils and beans — and it’s lots. We could go till summer.

On the other hand, I foresee a significant uptick in consumption of coriander leaf, most of 2hich ends up in the composted because Sobey’s sells it only in huge bunches. Parsley, likewise.

Phooey.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: leeneia
Date: 06 Mar 19 - 11:57 AM

I know what you mean. After a while, you long for something crunchy. Here's a recipe I got from my in-laws, RIP. It's good.

Chicken Piquant
Sauce: Whisk together 4 T lime juice, 2T veg oil, 2T dried tarragon, 1 t paprika.

Put parchment paper on a baking sheet. Put chicken thighs on sheet, spoon some sauce over.

Bake at 375 for 25 minutes. Turn pieces over and spoon the rest of the sauce on. Continue to bake 25-35 mins more, till well done.

Remove from oven, set on a rack 10 minutes to rest, serve.
==========
And while you have the oven going, why not cook squash or potatoes on the other rack? If squash, poke a hole in it with a corkscrew to let the steam out.
===========
The parchment paper may not be necessary, but it makes for easier clean up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Mar 19 - 11:45 AM

The horrible deep freeze has passed and now we can get on with spring. Perhaps this year I'll get seeds started early enough to get some beans and lettuce. Most of our gardening season is too hot for those tender plants.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Mar 19 - 01:07 PM

This week if the freezer died I could move the contents outside and they'd stay frozen. It's cooking weather, though I haven't decided what is for dinner? I don't want to eat stew every day.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Mar 19 - 05:22 PM

Stew it is. Defrosted enough 1-pound chunks of chuck roast (I freeze it that way because I typically use it to make my own ground beef and 1 pound is the amount I usually need.) I'll let it braise for a while and may not eat much today but it'll be ready for tomorrow and Monday when we're down to 21o.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 02 Mar 19 - 08:54 AM

I made a marvy roast pork loin by disobeying all instructions... Berbere spice, into hot oven, turn down to normal after 15 mn. So juicy!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Mar 19 - 12:39 AM

The best ice cream hands-down is Kroger's Private Selection Denali Extreme Moose Tracks variety. There's no off switch when it comes to "enough" of that. Alas, the container doesn't recycle.

We've had springlike weather, but we're about to be plunged into the deep freeze for a few days. Time for more soup. Or stew.

I made a batch of oatmeal cookie dough that was spreading out too much on the baking sheet on the first batch. I had to kind of peel them off, but the misshaped blobs still tasted great. The rest of the raw dough went into the fridge and I've decided my best bet is to make one large cookie (on parchment paper on the insulated tray) in my toaster oven in the morning to go with my cup of tea. I don't eat too many at one time that way.

These are particularly good - I made them with chopped dates and walnuts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 01 Mar 19 - 11:14 AM

I sympathize, Steve. Ambrosia Custard is not my poison, but I can be summoned from the depths of slumber by a sudden craving for butterscotch ripple ice cream. I'm not proud of this predeliction, but consider it a weakness. Fortunately, the best type of butterscotch ripple ice cream is available only in half-litre containers ...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 28 Feb 19 - 05:13 PM

There's comes a time, Jos, when one has to compromise...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 28 Feb 19 - 03:36 PM

Like Lemon meringue pie can be like a slice of sunshine, my dessert is like strawberry fields forever.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jos
Date: 28 Feb 19 - 02:58 PM

And you SHOULD be feeling guilty Steve. That can should have been recycled.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 28 Feb 19 - 01:35 PM

Become peckish after a glass of wine or three.

Wait 'til the missus goes to bed.

Seize can of Ambrosia custard and apply can opener.

Eat furtively straight from can, keeping clanking noises to minimum.

Rinse can thoroughly (don't forget lid) so that rubbish bin won't smell suspiciously of custard in the morning. Hide can in bin under at least six inches of rubbish.

Spend ten minutes utterly consumed by guilt and work out ploy to replace can in cupboard undetected at earliest opportunity.

Clean teeth before retiring. And no custardy belches in bed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 28 Feb 19 - 08:23 AM

PS
If you allow the liquid and the pot of fruit to cool overnight you can be sure of a thick enough consistency of both. If needed simmer more.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 28 Feb 19 - 08:10 AM

The ultimate Strawberry Tart or rhubarb Pie
The goal is to have a dessert that has a tart bite yet is still semi sweet.

Ingredients for four pies 1 inch deep
four pre made graham cracker crusts
1 pound frozen strawberries
10 frozen cherries ( for color)
1 lb. fresh Cranberries frozen
6 foot long stalks of rhubarb sliced 5-10 millimeters
10 ounces of strawberry preserves or spreadble fruit
corn starch to thicken liquid sauce as it boils down

Directions

Almost cover with water and boil strawberries in large pot until very soft
Cover ith water and boil cranberries cherries and rhubarb in another pot until Cranberries swell up and are soft.

With strainer pour combining contents so you save all the red liquid into a pot.

Add the spreadable fruit or preserves to the fruit and siimmer.
Boil the liquid down adding only enough corn starch to reach desired thickness of honey or thicker.

Place some thickened liqid into pie shells and combine the rest with the fruit. Put the fruit into the pie shells and chill or if you want to bake regular pie crusts se less hick liquid.

This turned out well for me and is on of my better inventions. For taller pies use three or even two pie crusts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: BobL
Date: 24 Feb 19 - 07:46 AM

According to a recent New Scientist article, the production of cheese is almost as bad for the environment as that of meat. In fact it's worse than chicken or pork.
Some vegan substitutes were tested, opinions being generally unfavourable and ranging from "inoffensive" to "resembling half-set PVA glue".


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Thompson
Date: 23 Feb 19 - 11:11 PM

My most farmer-like friend - “What??? No meat????” was raving about vegan food he recently had in a restaurant on a trip abroad; he thinks it was Korean or Chinese.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 23 Feb 19 - 11:34 AM

I had to look Spackle up. It appears Polyfilla is a reasonable UK alternative. So probably a fillers and sealants section over here.

The vegan alternatives have not sounded appealing to me but, I'm not sure I've ever got as far as trying say a "vegan cheese" to see how a find it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Feb 19 - 11:24 AM

You'll find vegan and/or fat-free sour cream, cream cheese, and yogurt on the Spackle aisle in the hardware store.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 23 Feb 19 - 11:18 AM

Vegans would not eat any dairy product but I gather there are so called "vegan yogurts" made using vegetable products.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jos
Date: 23 Feb 19 - 11:02 AM

I'll certainly be trying that curry - but I was a bit surprised that it introduced itself as a vegan recipe and then finished with
"Serve with chapatis or naan, yoghurt and a little lime or lemon pickle on the side." I thought vegans didn't eat yoghurt.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 23 Feb 19 - 09:20 AM

I’ve yet to try one but the Guardian seems to offer quite a few vegetarian recipes these days. One I’m planning on trying next week is a sag aloo with aubergine


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 22 Feb 19 - 03:23 PM

Take whole cauliflower and slice into 2-3 cm slices (1 inch-ish). Preheat oven to whatever is convenient for whatever else is cooking. Put some oil and any spices/herbs you like on the cauliflower "steaks" and pop into oven on big flat sheet. The time will depend on the temp but they are good under- and overcooked too...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Thompson
Date: 22 Feb 19 - 12:32 PM

Good thinking! I do make ratatouille occasionally but will make it a standard. I make a lentil-rich lamb stew; must find a way to use less or no lamb. No knowledge of roast portobello or cauliflower steaks, though.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 22 Feb 19 - 08:53 AM

Ratatouille? Portabello or cauliflower steaks, roasted? I will keep thinking.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Thompson
Date: 21 Feb 19 - 03:17 AM

Any truly delicious vegetarian main courses, not fatty or salty, for someone with high blood pressure?


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Charmion
Date: 20 Feb 19 - 06:40 PM

We are having spareribs for supper, with brown rice cooked in roast drippings. I cleaned out the fridge today.

The only kind of white rice I buy nowadays is Arborio for risotto. I’ll eat plain white rice at Asian restaurants, but at home I like the nubbly kind.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Feb 19 - 11:30 AM

The rice is usually in 10 and 25 pound cloth bags that zip and have a plastic liner. They're also stitched closed below the zip so you have to pull the string to get into the bag once you have it home. The rice comes from India, Pakistan, and various other nations and principalities in the region.

The Asian market also has large bags of rice, and while there is *mostly* Basmati at the Halal market, they have a few others such as the fragrant jasmine rice and some yellow rice. I buy a brown Basmati rice to get a bit more fiber from it. The Asian varieties are short, long, round, fragrant, all sorts of types and colors. They have the jasmine rice, pearl type rounder grains, long grains, grains meant for sticky rice, etc. What we see on the shelves in American mainstream grocery stores are maybe three varieties from a crop that has hundreds of varieties from around the world.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 20 Feb 19 - 06:17 AM

I don't know the reasons but basmati rice can seem to me to vary a bit. We changed from getting "supermarket's own" a few years ago and these days try to stick with the Tilda Pure. It might sound a bit odd but it's one we know where we are with.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Feb 19 - 10:32 PM

There are many basmati brands in this store, and I take time reading labels and comparing claims and pricing. Aged, extra long, fragrant, all things to consider. Never get parboiled. Cook it from the beginning yourself.

You should see the rice aisle at the Asian market - double the size and quadruple the types and brands (all in large bags.) It's a large grocery store, and this part of Texas has large Asian and Middle Eastern populations. Lucky all of us that their stores do such a great job with the import foods.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Feb 19 - 09:10 PM

You're not wrong. But basmati is just a big a minefield as olive oil.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Feb 19 - 08:59 PM

My olive oil is extra virgin and I buy 3-litre bottles at the Halal Import Market. They get oil by the pallet and I never seem to get the same label twice, but I always read them and select oil that comes from one place, usually a town in Palestine or Jordan or Israel. None of this commingled oil from all around the Mediterranean (and probably isn't all olive oil.)

The same store gets dates by the pallet, Basmati rice by the pallet, you get the drift - they import food for a large customer base, people who cook from scratch with ingredients from back home.

I tend to buy produce more at the Asian market across the street from the Halal market. They have a lot more to choose from in a lot better condition.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Donuel
Date: 19 Feb 19 - 08:07 PM

Your last post should be the introduction to every cook book.
Its all true


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Feb 19 - 07:47 PM

No-one ever taught me to cook anything. My countless mistakes have been visited on my poor family for decades, but by now almost everything I cook goes down well. I've learned a few golden rules:

Keep it simple. Recipes with twenty ingredients are designed to compensate for shortcomings, not for ingredients to complement each other, and every extra ingredient increases the risk of failure.

Don't be a slave to a recipe. If it says fennel seeds or coriander, and you don't like them, just leave them out. My guacamole is famous, but it has parsley instead of coriander. My idea!

Timings in cookery books are generally useless. Boil potatoes for fifteen minutes until soft my arse. I won't mash glue. I never time meat. So many minutes per pound and so many over? Recipe for disaster. A big chicken two hours, slathered in butter, all but the last half-hour under foil. An average turkey, three hours. Shoulder of lamb, whack it in the oven as is after breakfast at 110C and forget it until five o'clock. Pot roasts the same, maybe for not quite as long, though ox cheeks can take way over four hours. Never had ox cheeks? Loser! Braised steaks two and a half hours. Shoulder of pork with crackling, as with lamb but give it a very hot blast at the very start and the very end.
And never buy little joints. Waste of time and they don't cook nice.

Use the very best ingredients you can find. Insipid chemical golfball tomatoes do not a decent tomato sauce make. In fact, even Italians use canned tomatoes, even in summer. I once read somewhere that the most expensive rice you can find is still cheap. It's true. And a half-teaspoon of sugar in any tomato dish absolutely transforms it. Cheap chicken is not worth eating and it's cruel.

A tiny splash of Tabasco improves almost everything.

Never mince garlic. It turns a lovely, mellow ingredient into a harsh near-poison. I never want to think that if I eat this I'll be breathing out garlic for two days, and I do use a lot of garlic.

Simple Italian pasta sauces are ruined if onion is incorporated. Meaty ragus are the exception.

Strong herby flavours in a dish mean that you have failed. I love rosemary and sage (fresh, not dried) but they can be hooligans if overused. I don't understand anyone who puts mint in peas, though fresh baby mint leaves sprinkled on pea purée on crostini (with roasted garlic, butter and Parmesan as well as the peas) are fabulous. Dried oregano in a beefy tomato dish is super, but if I find a pot of dried basil in your cupboard that's the last time I eat at your house.

I enjoy cooking, especially if have have a large glass of white wine on the go, and as long as I can listen to The Archers and everyone keeps out of the kitchen.

If you have tuna in spring water, throw it in the bin unopened. Don't serve pink salmon to your guests. Don't buy olive oil that isn't extra virgin. It's bullshit that you can't cook with extra virgin. Buy something bog standard such as Napolina extra virgin for cooking but don't heat it too much. Buy a nice Italian estate oil for sprinkling on your pizza (do that in order to not be wrong), for salad dressing and for drizzling on your pasta dish or tostada. If you need to get oil very hot, for home-made oven chips for example, use groundnut oil.

And in less than ten minutes you can have a fish finger or bacon butty that, when you feel peckish and a bit miserable, outstrips by way of huge enjoyment any Michelin-starred poncy recipe.

I'm ducking now...


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