Category Archives: Cook from scratch

This week in my kitchen…Beets( week 2) and Kombucha…

Thank you for once again joining me in my kitchen…I am still making pickles as now my son is back he loves some pickles with his sundowner…Those Jalapenos are very nice but do bring a tear to one’s eye and leave the tongue tingling they are hot, hot, hot…

Beetroot is my new favourite at the moment and it is plentiful here so I am looking at all things beetroot…I love my beetroot and orange but I also love this …

Raspberry Protein Drink…it just has that earthy background not too pronounced ..just there but if you love beets like me then you will love this…I use Greek Yoghurt as the protein instead of using protein powders…All natural which comes out of this kitchen…

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup of coconut water
  • 1/3 cup of greek yoghurt
  • 1/2 cup of frozen raspberries
  • 1/2 medium beetroot(raw) peeled and diced.
  • 1 tbsp honey ( optional)
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds ( optional)

Raspberry Protein Shake

Let’s, Blitz!

Measure all the ingredients into your blender and blitz away… The colour was amazing a beautiful colour and it tasted very nice not too sweet and I did add honey.

Those of you who follow me know that I make my own Tahini for hummus…add some beetroot and not only is it a glorious colour but it adds another dimension to the taste…It makes a change …especially if you have visitors…

How to make your very own Tahini paste/butter..it is so quick and easy and the cost of a packet of sesame seeds is virtually pennies against the cost of a store-bought jar of tahini paste and no nasties….Looking at the date on that jar that was my very first Tahini….4 years ago…The initial reason was that it was so very expensive here and contained preservatives so now if I need Tahini I just whip up as much as I need…so easy…

Tahini Paste

Let’s Cook!

Into the kitchen, a quick toasting of the Sesame Seeds, then into the mini blender, 3 tbsp Olive oil, and a quick whizz, scrape down the sides, another tbsp Olive oil and another scrape, a  bit more oil and a quick whizz and viola your  Tahini Paste is now made and ready to use. How easy is that?

Beetroot Hummus.

beetroot hummus

To the Hummus recipe add 250 gm cooked beetroot and reduce tahini paste to  2 tbsp. You may want to add more seasoning as beets have quite a strong flavour but it makes a lovely change from a traditional hummus and looks so pretty.

Beetroot soup…

Red Beetroot with leaves and one cut beet

  • 250 g (1/2 lb) beetroot, grated coarsely
  • 250 g (1/2 lb) tomatoes, halved (or tinned tomatoes)
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped roughly
  • 1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 250 ml (8 fl oz) stock
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Let’s Cook!

Place the halved tomatoes in an ovenproof dish. Throw over the garlic and drizzle over half the olive oil. Roast them for 25-30 minutes at 190°C/375°F/Gas mark 5 until soft and pulpy. Rub through a sieve to remove the skin and pips.

Heat the remaining oil in a pan and sweat the onion for a few minutes until soft. Add the beetroot and the stock and bring to the boil. Season lightly with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Simmer gently for 7-10 minutes until the beetroot is tender.

Stir in the tomato purée, transfer the soup to a blender and process until completely smooth. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Reheat the soup until thoroughly hot but not boiling.

Divide between warm bowls and crumble over a little feta into each bowl. Serve with crusty bread or swirl with some natural yoghurt.

Once your tomatoes are roasted and prepared it is a quick soup to make it went down a big here and I didn’t get chance to take a photo next methinks as it was such a lovely soup…

Just a little warning if you are eating more beets like me it does have an effect on your bodily functions in that it can turn your wee pink or number two’s red but don’t worry it is the beets…

My kombucha scoby is rehydrating nicely…I am looking forward to having a lovely drink of Kombucha in a few weeks time…

Komucha Scoby

It is not the pleasantest looking thing it looks like a beige or white rubbery pancake…But it has definitely grown… got fatter so seems to be rehydrating nicely…

There are a few foods and beverages which require a similar mother culture i.e Ginger Beer, Jun…A drink similar to Kombucha, Keffir, Sourdough and Vinegar which to produce requires a mother of vinegar.

A symbolic culture of bacteria ( Scoby)

Is thought to have originated in the Far East probably China …The 1st recorded use was in China 221bc during the Tsin Dynasty it is known as the tea of immortality.

Scientists are also working on producing a workable bio-textile ( Vegan Leather) from Kombucha Scobies.

I am always experimenting on something in my kitchen which is a source of amusement to some in my family and their friends…However, they have been willing guinea pigs at times…Like these…

Teriyaki Chicken Drumsticks…

Teriaki drumsticks chicken

Quick and easy just mix some soy sauce, honey and lots of garlic…Make cuts in the chicken drumsticks and brush with the sauce…sometimes I marinade in the fridge or I just keep brushing during cooking depends on the time …A quick easy and tasty drums which Aston and his friends demolished in a heartbeat…But with a jacket potato and some salad make a nice summers meal.

I hope you have enjoyed this week in my kitchen if you have any recipe requests please let me know and I will be happy to find them and try them…x

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there will be more on this on my blog this year

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

More and more of my blogging friends have joined me on MeWe…A social media site which is fairly new and which promises much without the restrictions some other social media sites are choosing to impose on many of us…Join me if you will on  mewe.com/i/caroltaylor3 

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://carolcooks2.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have had a creative week and enjoy the weekend xx

Whimsical Wednesday… with Carol…

Welcome to Whimsical Wednesday’s when anything is on the menu…A cloudy day today temp 31 degrees feels like 36 degrees… only a slight chance of rain today…A good day for a walk…Yesterday I took two walks early morning and one to market in the afternoon…I fancied ginger tea…it was certainly heavy on the ginger but just as I like it…Freshly made…

Today is National Kittens Day…

kitten up a tree

Image by Kessa from Pixabay

Kittens who doesn’t love tiny, adorable kittens? …their big heads, giant eyes, tiny pink paws and noses, and the adorable mews they make…. Irresistible…Americans seem to like cats and kittens best: According to the American Humane Society, 95.6 million cats were owned, while 83.3 million households owned a dog. There is certainly nothing wrong with dogs, but a tiny kitten is just so irresistible! Look at that adorable face is it saying look at me or help I can’t get down?

On this day in 1940…The Battle of Britain began when Nazi forces attacked shipping convoys in the English Channel…My dad was 12 years old at that time…My mother was 10 years old and like many, that was when childhood as they knew changed and many brave men and women gave their lives.

battle of Britain monument

 

Time for some music…

music notes

1964 saw the Beatles release third 3rd studio album ( It’s a ) ” Hard Days Night” followed by the Rolling Stones who on 10th July 1964 scored their first US #1 single ” Satisfaction”

I loved Top of the Pops it was a weekly treat with Pans People who still dance by the way…My father took great delight in ridiculing all the bands and singers and telling me that they wouldn’t be around in years to come like his favourite singers…Well, he soon had to eat his words and I remember back in early 2000 when they released a compilation of their hits called 40 Licks…My father was very happy to receive a copy of that in his Christmas stocking…

For you dad …I hope you are listening up there…xxx Love you forever xxx

Kombucha…I love a drink of Kombucha the last time being a few years ago as my friend who lives in Phuket made her own…A fermented, slightly alcoholic, lightly effervescent black or green tea drink,,, Juices or spices can be added and often are to commercially brewed Kombucha drinks which can be high in sugar so I steer clear and decided to make my own…I am rehydrating my scoby which is going really well it is swelling and looking good for a very unattractive culture which can also be known as tea mushroom or tea fungus…More to come as she grows…

Latest Wimbledon News…

 

wimbledon logo in flowers

Young Corri Gauff reached the fourth round…For a15 years old that is a fabulous achievement.

Roger Federer is hoping to get his 100th match win at Wimbledon today when he plays Japans Kei Nishikori.

Rafael Nadal is playing Sam Querry will he win his match? Will all three of these guys win their matches to march on and maybe one of them will be Wimbledon Champion this year…

My favourite Novak Djokovic is also playing a Belgian player called David Goffin who he has beaten in 6 previous meetings although it all boils down to who plays the best Tennis on the day…My fingers are crossed for Novak…

Yesterday saw the awesome pair Murray and Williams win their game but I reckon they will be a hard pair to beat…

Time for a story…The Beach Bum…

The phone call in the middle of the night shattered our hearts our lives. Our beloved father was gone, the victim of a hit and run accident, never to return.

Lives were torn apart, my brother, my twin, my soul mate always so fragile retreated further into the recess of his mind.

Being the strong one I was thrust slap bang into the middle of corporate life. Now chair lady of the board at just 19 years old.

Such hostility I had never met in my life, I worked hard and become a daughter my father would have been proud of. My life, however, was not my own any more. My enemies always there, always ready for me to make one slip, one mistake, they were like vultures, circling.

man alone beach

My brother always the sickly one spent more and more of his time at this tiny, little known retreat in the heart of Thailand. Gradually he became better, more able to cope but always yearning for the simple life. There was not a corporate bone in his body although his mind, sharp unlike any I had ever known, he was also so like our mother gentle and fragile who left this world and us when we were only 5 yrs old.

10 years later.

A balmy, slightly hazy day, waves gently lapping on the white sand. Lovers walking hand in hand without seemingly a care in this world. Local fishermen casting their lines from the shore, long tail boats in the background. The only sounds are the waves and the soft murmur of indistinct words as they catch the gentle breeze. To an onlooker an idyllic life, the reality often so different.

Like life, appearances so deceptive.

Myself, beautiful I am told, the perfect woman with the perfect life…Ha Ha. Today was the day; everyone thought I was staying at a 5-star resort with every imaginable luxury to cosset madam.

Hammock palm trees beach

The reality is that once a year for a month I take my hammock, rucksack and board a plane to my beloved Thailand.

My suitcase goes to that 5-star resort; the staff given strict instructions that I am not to be disturbed. My meals are bought to my room, the empty dishes left outside my door. Inside the TV monitors are trained on a boardroom and its members.

My brother, my soul mate, my friend and confidant who walks the beach, sleeps under the stars, changes places with me.

For a month he watches and listens!

By Carol Ann Taylor.

Recipe Corner…

This is by far the best recipe I have eaten so far for ribs. I nearly didn’t eat them as I am not a fan of chewing on a rib, however, the meat on these was so moist and soft it just fell off the bone. We cooked it as one whole piece rather than cut the ribs into portions.

Pork-ribs-asian-flavours

Ingredients:

  • A 2-kilo piece of Pork Rib.

For the marinade:

  • 160 ml Hoisin sauce
  • 4 tbsp BLACK Soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp fresh orange juice and the grated zest.
  • 4 tbsp raw brown sugar
  • 10cm piece of fresh ginger julienned
  • 4 cloves of garlic crushed
  • 2 tsp Chinese 5 spice powder
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon
  • 4-star anise

Let’s Cook!

Mix all of the above ingredients together.
Then paint over the rack of ribs and put in the fridge for at least an hour to marinate and absorb all those lovely flavours.
Pre-heat oven to 190 degrees.
Cover the dish with foil and cook the ribs for 2 ½ to 3 hrs, basting the meat occasionally.
When nice and tender remove from the oven and portion up and those lovely leftover juices from the pan we drizzled over the ribs and served them with a mixed salad, potato salad, and beetroot.

As always a finger bowl and serviettes are required as ribs make for quite a messy and enjoyable experience but very enjoyable and we would definitely make them again.
Enjoy!

That’s it for this week …Enjoy Wimbledon all you tennis fans  …Thank you for reading my whimsical ramblings I do hope you enjoyed and it bought back some memories xxx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there will be more on this on my blog this year

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

More and more of my blogging friends have joined me on MeWe…A social media site which is fairly new and which promises much without the restrictions some other social media sites are choosing to impose on many of us…Join me if you will on  mewe.com/i/caroltaylor3 

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://carolcooks2.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a creative week ahead xx

Eat Smart! Eat Healthily!… Recipes, Wacky Diet Corner and some Commonsense…

Ahhhh…First drink of the day…Oolong green tea…It is quiet and peaceful…Aston has been packed off to school, time to check my e-mail and stuff…and then I write…

I write these posts as a way of focusing my mind on my diet although I have been helped by my smartwatch it focuses me by keeping a track of my steps, heart rate and sleep patterns for me I like it apart from my laptop it is the first personal piece of technology that I own and a good buy…

What helps focus your mind...Do you find it easy sticking to healthy eating? If not …Why not? What drives you is it your health and your families health.?.. Is it because you want to wear the latest clothes and look good?. Is it to attract that special someone? Is it so you can play ball without wheezing with your kids?

I have used those reasons over the years plus some…Have I tried quick fixes…Yes, I have…Have I failed miserably after starting off so well… Oh…Indeed I have…I have brought books ( South Beach Diet), subscribed to Weighwatchers, Slimming World,…None of those bad…Like my wacky diet corner and I would never do those..But all restricted or didn’t allow certain foods in some way or another…I don’t follow rules very well either…Well, I don’t…

Low fat…Well, I was reading a study just the other day and like all studies, they need to be long term…Low fat and telling us meat was really bad for us…All debunked…It didn’t work and the latest news is …Forget all that…Low fat generally means higher sugar…

The latest news is...don’t eat low fat, cut out or down the processed foods…Eat organic where possible or wash your food thoroughly…Grow your own…Shop local…Don’t cut out food groups unless you are medically advised…EAT MODERATELY…

I know many of you are probably sick of hearing that word…What would you rather I use? within reason, reasonably, temperately, conservatively, sparingly, economically, somewhat, slightly???

Or just say…Forget…Eat your heart out…..

heart-care-1040248_640

Our heart…One of our major organs…If it didn’t keep to the beat we would have a problem…It needs to be kept as healthy as we can keep it…How we do that? Read Sally’s post on Healthy Eating for a Healthy Heart…

It is a good, commonsense post and for me. a good read…Don’t tell anyone but as I have got older I have found commonsense…He has always been one step in front or behind of me and now we are synchronised and in harmony…But I still have a piece of chocolate or a doughnt..sometimes…A little of what you fancy does you good …Remember that…

Wacky Diet Corner…The Tongue Patch Diet…

 

It’s like a horror movie …Some people are eating clay…A tsp a day in water…I think they all need to read Sally’s post on cravings…

A new series on a sensation that has been blamed for our consumption or over-consumption of certain foods since we were old enough to make excuses! How often do we tell ourselves or others that ‘we crave’ chocolate, crisps, cheese, soda, fried food or even something non-food related… such as dirt or coal? AND CLAY!

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/07/03/smorgasbord-health-column-what-causes-your-cravings-part-two-need-chocolate-by-sally-cronin/

I think that it is good that we can attribute certain factors which cause our cravings and much of that is down to restrictive diets and it certainly makes me feel better that it is not just my lack of will power but a valid reason…

Recipe Corner...The cauliflower…

Cauliflower with leaves

Image by 1195798 from Pixabay

One of my favourite vegetables I love the white cauliflower and also the vivid green romesco cauliflower it is lovely just lightly steamed as a vegetable, roasted with some Indian spices or au gratin with a cheese sauce…I can now add cauliflower rice to that list and a cauliflower pizza base…Today I also saw a recipe using the cauliflower as a burger bun I haven’t tried and tested that yet…But I will…Below I have given the cauliflower rice recipe which is well tried and tested…

And all you need is a Cauliflower and an Onion.

A little Coconut oil to cook or other oil of your choice.

Sea Salt and a squeeze Lemon Juice.

Either grate or blitz in a food processor ( but not too fine) you want some texture.

Heat pan and keep pan HOT as you don’t want Cauliflower to steam and go soggy.

Use Tablespoon Coconut Oil and put in the desired amount of Cauliflower and onion mix.

Cook quickly and then season and add lemon juice.

All in all, it only takes a few minutes to cook….. a bit longer if more than one portion but keep pan hot.

cauliflower-rice-pork-thai basil-recipe

If you wish to vary the taste you can add 1 tsp of Cumin seeds to the oil before adding Cauliflower if you are eating Indian Food.

If you require colour if eating Mexican……. then add 1/2 tsp turmeric to oil and tsp tomato puree.

This is very versatile and just use your imagination and add any herbs and spices that you like.

To store...I make a batch and keep in the fridge for during the week but keep in a glass jar or zip lock bag…I think plastic containers may make it sweat too much…..Enjoy…. and if you are cutting the carbs it is an ideal and yummy substitute for rice and I love rice…… eat it all the time but happily substitute this as I am also a cauliflower lover.

Cauliflower Pizza Base…

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium head cauliflower.
  • 1 egg, large.
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning (dried oregano or basil)
  • 1/8 tsp salt.
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper.
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan or Mozzarella cheese, grated/shredded.
  • Cooking spray, I make my own spray I don’t do bought oil in spray cans…I have a little stainless steel one for oil.

Let’s Cook!

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F/190 C and line a baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper.

Rinse cauliflower, remove the outer leaves, separate into florets and chop into smaller pieces. Process in a food processor in 2 batches, until “rice” texture forms.

Transfer cauliflower rice on a prepared baking sheet and bake for 10 mins this just removes some of the moisture.

Remove cooked cauliflower rice from the oven, transfer to a bowl lined with a double/triple layered cheesecloth or linen towel, and let cool for 5 minutes.

Then squeeze the liquid out of the ball as hard as you can. Be patient and do this a few times until barely any liquid comes out.

Increase oven temperature to 4 degrees F/200 C. Then in a medium mixing bowl whisk the egg with dried herbs, salt and pepper for 10 seconds. Add cheese and squeezed cauliflower mix very well with a spatula until combined.

Line the same baking sheet with new parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Transfer cauliflower dough to the middle and flatten with your hands until thin pizza crust forms.

Bake for 20 minutes, carefully flip with a spatula and bake for a few more minutes. Top with your favourite toppings and bake again until cheese on top turns golden brown.

Slice and enjoy!

Let the kids help you can never second guess a child and what they will like.  Encourage them to help prepare their food…They are more likely to eat what they help prepare.

THE VERSATILE CAULIFLOWER… I love it! x

I hope that you have enjoyed reading this and that it proves helpful to you in your healthy eating journey xx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there will be more on this on my blog this year

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

More and more of my blogging friends have joined me on MeWe…A social media site which is fairly new and which promises much without the restrictions some other social media sites are choosing to impose on many of us…Join me if you will on  mewe.com/i/caroltaylor3 

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://carolcooks2.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a creative week ahead xx

 

 

 

 

 

The Culinary Alphabet …The Letter Q…

The culinary alphabet 11th June 2019

It is that time of the month when I am over @Esme’s Salon for my posts on the Culinary Alphabet…Have you visited her new look blog?…. I am trawling through the Culinary Alphabet and today it is the letter Q FOR quince ( they make) lovely jelly and quadriller…Have you heard of that culinary term ???

The quince looks similar to the pear and is bright golden when it is ripe although that creamy white flesh turns into a deep, dusky red colour when it is cooked.

quince jam-276805_640

The quince is high in pectin which makes it perfect for preserves and jellies and that is what I remember my mum making with quinces a lovely jam. Raw it has a tart, astringent taste and the smell is likened to that of a tropical fruit it is also packed with Vitamin C.

Quadriller

Is a term used for crosses cut on food for food presentation.

Queso

Queso Blanco is Spanish and is unaged fresh cheeses made from cows milk although sometimes goats milk is added to the mix it is also said that it is known in some cases to be the cause of food poisoning.

Quail

The Quail is a small ground resting game bird which is very popular in French cuisine and often seen on TV cooking shows looking very fancy. Part of the peasant family the Common Quail has been replaced by the domesticated Japanese Quail as the bones in a quail are small they are commonly eaten and not removed from the carcass. The quail is very popular in Thailand and often found on the street markets here…Roasting away and very delicious.

Quail’s Eggs

Quails eggs are something of a delicacy and often made into small scotch eggs on posh menus.  Here they are classed as street food and sold fried and served with fish sauce and are one of my favourite snacks.

To read the rest of the post Click Here

Thank you so much for reading my posts.  I do hope you have enjoyed them if you have please share on your favourite social media and thank you to Esme who hosts me every month. xxx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there will be more on this on my blog this year

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

MeWe

More and more of my blogging friends have joined me on MeWe…A social media site which is fairly new and which promises much without the restrictions some other social media sites are choosing to impose on many of us…Join me if you will on  mewe.com/i/caroltaylor3 

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://carolcooks2.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all are having a great weekend and have a creative week ahead xx

 

 

This week in my kitchen…Tried and Tested Recipes…

 

Welcome to this week in my kitchen…Still lots of tropical showers …Everything is growing like crazy …sun and rain has that effect…

I don’t buy tinned goods often mainly just baked beans which hubby loves and I have not made any to his taste yet..and tomato puree  I always do my own tomatoes fresh for spag bol and chilli etc…But the puree it is easier to buy a tin…However, tin openers here are the worst ever cheap and last 5 minutes…I saw this video as there have been occasions when the cheap can opener has died making no more than a minuscule opening and then hubby has dangerously resorted to knives and the like…This made me smile and I thought it was an ingenious idea…Not so hubby but you can’t please everyone all the time can you…haha

They make it look so easy, don’t they?

In my kitchen this week…Shepherds Pie an old family favourite…This recipe has been around forever… well a good few years and no two people make it alike… I change my recipe every time I make it …The term Shepherds Pie refers to a pie made with lamb and if it is made with beef it is known as a Cottage Pie …The topping is potato and not a pastry crust which one could be forgiven for thinking as a pie normally does have a pastry crust…Not in England or Ireland when it refers to this pie…My mother used to make hers with the leftover lamb from Sunday lunch which was minced and then she added carrots and onions, gravy and topped with potato.

The term cottage pie was in use by 1791, when the potato was being introduced as an edible crop and something the poor could afford… the term cottage meaning a modest dwelling for rural workers.

The term shepherd’s pie did not appear until 1854 and was initially used synonymously with cottage pie, regardless of whether the meat was beef or mutton. However, in the UK since the 20th century, the term shepherd’s pie is used only when the meat is lamb we do love to be proper us Brits…haha

As for a recipe just cook your mince with onions and add any vegetables you like i.e mushrooms, peas, carrots, sweetcorn and make a gravy just like when you make a stew cook it for about 10 mins then pop the meat mix into an ovenproof dish top with mashed potato and if liked add some grated cheese and or breadcrumbs to give it a crispy top when it browns  in the oven .

Home made Shepherds Pie

Serve with steamed vegetables or just some crusty bread…If you like to add a little gravy or sauce…Some people like ketchup and some brown sauce there is no right or wrong way just however you like it …Just get the name right if talking to a Brit…haha

This Orange Pork is a family favourite or you could use chicken although I was reading today that as regards to your cholesterol a new paper out said there was no difference between red meat and chicken and turkey in the tests they had conducted… What I love about this is the rice it is a way of getting vegetables into your diet by adding to the rice.

Orange Pork with Watercress Rice…

Orange Pork with Watercress Rice

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups of rice
  • 1 ¼ lb Pork tenderloin cut into cubes
  • 3 cups of coarsely chopped watercress reserving a few sprigs for garnish.
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 3 tbsp of oil
  • 3 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2/3 cup Orange marmalade
  • A ½ cup of finely julienned ginger
  • Salt and pepper to season

Cook the rice and toss in the watercress with ½ to 1 tbsp oil, cover and leave to stand for at least 10 minutes.

Season the pork and with the pan on medium heat add the oil and add half of the ginger and cook until the ginger is golden, drain and set to one side.

Add the pork and brown for 3-4 minutes and then remove from the pan. Add the remainder of the ginger and the garlic and cook for 30 seconds add the marmalade, fish sauce and lime juice bring to a slow rolling boil stirring until it is syrupy then return the pork to the pan simmer for 1 minute and serve over the rice.

Garnish with the crispy ginger and watercress sprigs.

This was very nice I wasn’t sure about watercress but the heat of the rice just wilted the watercress and it was very nice even hubby liked it….Me, I might add some chilli flakes next time…Just saying…

I love to eat fish and while we were shopping and having a mooch around the fish stalls I spied this beautiful fish with a broad yellow stripe down the middle one of my favourite fish is back in season…

The Yellow Tail fish or Amber Jack is native to the North East Pacific from Japan to Hawaii. It is also not related to the Yellowtail Tuna.

In Japan, this fish is eaten cooked or raw and known as Hamachi or Buri.

As you know I am firmly in the camp of eating healthily and choose my fish carefully …I steer clear of farmed fish and only eat locally caught straight off the boats or fish which is responsibly sourced. It doesn’t mean however that it is expensive which a lot of people seem to think …You can buy fish responsibly and at good prices by researching your local markets or even buying frozen.

This fish has extra lean, firm white meat and if you want a lighter meal then it is a lovely tasting fish with a mild flavour.

For two servings.

  • 2 x 150 g pieces of yellowtail fish.
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Sea salt to season…..I use a mineral salt which is farmed close to my home.
  • 1 egg white whisked until it is foamy.
  • 3 tbsp sesame seeds.
  • Oil for frying…I use coconut oil.

For chilli, lime and soy sauce.

  • 60 ml Soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp honey……
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 chilli, deseeded and finely sliced..guess who leaves the seeds in? Moi
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • A drizzle of  sesame seed oil
  • Fresh coriander leaves to serve

Preheat the oven to 180 °C.

Season the yellowtail fillets with a little salt and freshly milled black pepper. I cut the fish into steaks…BUT next time I will leave as a piece it will be easier for the Sesame seeding. I didn’t think it through when I cut the fish into steaks..yep I boobed. My sesame seeds didn’t all stay put.

Dip the seasoned fish into the egg white and coat both sides with sesame seeds.

Heat a little coconut oil( or oil of your choice) in a frying pan and sear the fish for about a minute on each side or until the sesame seeds are golden brown. Remove the fish and place in a roasting pan.

Cook in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the fish is just cooked through.

Meanwhile, make the soy sauce reduction. Place the soy sauce, honey, garlic, chilli, lime juice and sesame oil into a small saucepan and bring to the boil.

Put the soy sauce, honey, garlic, chilli, lime juice and sesame oil into a small saucepan and bring to the boil.

Cook for about 2–3 minutes or until the sauce has reduced slightly and has thickened so it coats the back of your spoon.

Remove the garlic clove and set to one side…

Once the fish is cooked, remove it from the oven and serve immediately, drizzled with a little soy sauce reduction.

Sesame crusted Yellowtail fish

Served with jasmine rice, steamed pak choi and fresh lime wedges.

Enjoy!

I do hope you have enjoyed these recipes which are all tried and tested in my own kitchen xx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there will be more on this on my blog this year

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

More and more of my blogging friends have joined me on MeWe…A social media site which is fairly new and which promises much without the restrictions some other social media sites are choosing to impose on many of us…Join me if you will on  mewe.com/i/caroltaylor3 

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://carolcooks2.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all are having a great weekend and have a creative week ahead xx

 

This week in my kitchen…Bread Pudding, Jalapeno Poppers and Coorg Mango Curry…

Here comes the rain again it is low season here and although the mornings are lovely and bright and sunny as the day goes on the clouds come in and the tropical storms start…This morning I was up bright and early so as to get to market before the rain descended…Hubby cleared the debris from last nights tropical storm it was quite windy and the trees took a bashing so he had some branches to dispose of but nothing serious and no plants damaged as they came down…I still haven’t got used to how very loud the thunder is here it always manages to make me jump at some point…

As it has been a bit dull and dreary hubby has been indoors and not in the garden so much he has been picking and routing through the fridge etc so I thought it was time to use up some of the bits of bread in the freezer…I save all the crusts and ends of a loaf and use to make either breadcrumbs or as was the case yesterday Bread Pudding. This recipe is one which has been passed down through the generations from my nan from her mum to her daughter etc, etc and you can make a small one or a big one in fact when I cooked the lunches on a local building site it was what attracted my hubby to our canteen…My bread pudding…40 years later he is still enjoying it…

bread-pudding-old -fashined recipe

 

Ingredients:

2/3 Ib of bread ( brown /white) or mixed.

1 tbsp Mixed Spice.

2 eggs beaten

3 oz butter melted.

12/16 oz  dried fruit (sultanas or raisins)

Let’s Cook!

Put bread in a large mixing bowl and cover with water or mix or milk and water to soak.

When soft I squeeze the bread out in a colander to get as much liquid out as I can. Normally I have my little helper( Lily) getting stuck in and squeezing the bread dry…Kids just love the mucky bits…lol

Nanny always pours the melted butter in and Lily adds the dried ingredients and gives the mix a good stir… I do miss my little helper…

bread-pudding-old fashioned-recipe

I like lots of spice and fruit so if I think it needs more at this point then I add it is one of those dishes where you can add what you like for example if I have had some other fruit left over as in cranberries or blueberries I would add them.

Put in hot oven 180 degrees for 1 hour if the top seems to be browning too quickly then reduce the heat a little. It should rise up a little by end of cooking. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with sugar.

This is when I invoke my rights to cooks perks and have the 1st bit..to try of course as it’s yummy hot and straight from the dish. But I gave up my cooks perks yesterday as I only have one stubborn pound to shift to get down to the next stone…

It is also great served with custard or cold if there is any left..haha. It also uses up all your bits of stale bread.

Today I made a new curry the recipe came from Trupti @ MyCulinary Saga...Called Coorg Mango Curry…Pop over and have a look Trupti has some lovely recipes…

Mangoes are very plentiful here and everywhere you go are all types of mangoes the squirrels are also enjoying the mangoes on our tree I just haven’t been quick enough or lucky enough to catch him on film yet…haha

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 semi-ripe mangoes
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp Red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp Coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp grated palm sugar
  • Salt to taste

For the seasoning:

  • 1 tbsp Oil(I used ghee)
  • 1/4 tsp Mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
  • a pinch of Fenugreek seeds ( I used fennel)
  • 4-6 Curry leaves
  • 2-3 cloves of Garlic, crushed or finely sliced
  • 1-2 Green chillies, slit and deseeded
  • 1 medium-sized Onion, sliced thinly

Let’s Cook!

The original recipe recommended washing the mangoes and cutting up leaving the skin on…The skin on my mangoes was quite marked so I removed the skin and cut up roughly.

To the mango add chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt. Mix well and let it marinate for 10 minutes.

Heat oil/ ghee in a pan on medium heat. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fenugreek (fennel)seeds to it and when it sputters, add the green chillies and curry leaves followed by garlic and sliced onions. Fry until the onions are soft and translucent.

Add the marinated mangoes and mix well. Then add about a cup of water and cook the mangoes with lid covered on a low heat for approx 5 minutes my mangoes took a little longer it depends on the ripeness of your fruit.

Add the palm sugar and cook until it thickens about 5/10 mins.

Coorg Mango curry

Serve hot with bread or rice…

N.B I fried some curry leaves for the top as a garnish…

I liked this curry ... I try to have a couple of meat-free days a week…Hubby wasn’t as keen he likes his protein so he had Thai green curry… Thank you Trupti a recipe I would make again…

I also was just in time to pick up a few bags of jalapenos when I went shopping they don’t come in on a regular basis and fly off the shelves at The Royal Project Shop so the boys struck lucky and snacks this week were Jalapeno poppers

A lovely crispy moreish little snack…

Stuffed jalapenos cooked

Back by popular demand was my Chicken and Prune Tagine/Stew…I am so pleased that the men in the house loved it and I don’t have to be sneaky about the prunes although I couldn’t get away with brown rice they are so fussy men at times aren’t they?

Ingredients:

• 4 large Chicken breasts, skinned and cut into cubes
• 1 tbsp Vegetable Oil I used coconut oil
• 1/2 tsp Ground Allspice
• 1/2 tsp fresh ground Black Pepper
• 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
• 2 tsp Cumin Seeds
• 1/2 tsp Ground Nutmeg
• 1 tsp Ground Turmeric
• 200g/7oz pitted Prunes
• 2 large Onions, sliced
• 1 tbsp freshly grated Ginger
• 3 Garlic Cloves, crushed
• Salt to taste
• 14fl.oz fresh Chicken Stock

Let’s Cook!

Heat the oil in a large heavy bottomed pan then add the chicken pieces and brown on all sides.

Add the spices, garlic, ginger and onions and cook stirring over medium heat until the onions have softened.

chicken and prunes tagine cooking gently

Add the stock and season with salt then bring to a slow rolling boil and reduce the heat to very low, cover and cook for about one-hour stirring occasionally.

At the end of the cooking remove the lid and increase the heat to reduce the sauce.

Chicken and Prune Tagine with rice

Serve with rice or couscous…

You would think being hot here that I would be making more salads, wouldn’t you? but not this week it must be all the rain and storms… It is making the men hungry…

Thank you for popping in I hope you enjoy the recipes…Until next time xxxx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there will be more on this on my blog this year

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

More and more of my blogging friends have joined me on MeWe…A social media site which is fairly new and which promises much without the restrictions some other social media sites are choosing to impose on many of us…Join me if you will on  mewe.com/i/caroltaylor3 

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://carolcooks2.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all are having a great weekend and have a creative week ahead xx

 

 

 

 

 

This week in my kitchen…Fajitas, Green Mango and Mackerel Salad…

Last week I was in Bangkok and what a lovely weekend it was…I am now back home..refreshed as I didn’t take my laptop so had a few days break which did me good…I came back renewed and invigorated…The weather here is typical rainy season lots of tropical storms and is that thunder loud…Still warm but the rain takes that edge off the searing heat…29C feels like 34C…Cloudy interspersed with tropical showers…Looks like it is set in for the day…

For a change, I thought I would make fajitas and my grandson has decided that it is his new favourite dinner…It is not very often that I make this sort of dinner I normally cook Thai, Indian or a good roast dinner…

Aston, of course, being a young foodie and a good little cook wanted guacamole, salsa, sour cream to go with his fully stuffed fajitas of which he ate 3 to my one…A growing lad with hollow legs as my mum used to say to us…

Guacamole.

guacamole

  • I avocado
  • 1 ripe tomato
  •  1 finely chopped shallot or green onion…I prefer shallots
  • I  birds eye chilli finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp of fresh coriander
  • Salt and black pepper for seasoning
  • Lime juice

Let’s Cook!

Peel and roughly chop the avocado stir in the chopped onion, chilli, tomatoes and the coriander. Season to taste with salt and black pepper and a generous squeeze of lime juice.

Cover the bowl with clingfilm and chill before serving.

Tomato Salsa.

salsa

Ingredients.

  • 1 med red onion finely chopped
  • 2 small cloves garlic (minced)
  • 3 large ripe tomatoes (peeled, chopped)
  • 1-2 red chilli peppers (hot or mild)
  • 2-3 tablespoons chopped cilantro.
  • 1 1/2-2 tbsp lime juice.
  • salt and pepper, to taste.

Let’s Cook!

Combine all the ingredients and season well…

Salsa is also Aston and Lily’s favourite snack so I think I have made it 3 nights out of 4 for the last week or two…Kids!

All of these dips are really quick to put together sometimes I use my little blender with the guacamole but am careful not to make it too smooth.

They can be served with my saltine crackers, pitta bread, Doritos, Fajitas or anything else of your choice…

Fajita mix.

• 3 tbsp Cornstarch…I use rice flour
• 2 tbsp Chilli Powder. ( I use dried chillies ground to a powder)
• 1 tbsp Salt.
• 1/2 tbsp Sugar.(optional)
• 1 tbsp Red Smoked Paprika
• 2 1/2 tsp Powdered chicken stock/seasoning.
• 1 1/2 tsp Onion Powder.
• 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder.
• 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper.
• 1/2 tsp Cumin Powder.

I always make my own mixes as I find that I can save money by buying larger packs of spices and also I have a quicker rotation so the spices stay fresh and not linger in the cupboard forever.

Chicken Fajitas.

fajita chicken cooked

2 chicken breast sliced into about 3 in pieces.

2/3 cloves of garlic crushed

1 onion chopped or sliced

1-2 tbsp Fajita mix

Half a red and yellow sweet bell pepper finely sliced…( optional)

I don’t cook them with my fajita mix as my family like their peppers uncooked in Fajitas this is purely personal taste and if you like yours in your mix then add near the end of cooking.

Let’s Cook!

Heat a glug of olive oil in your pan and add your onions and after a couple mins, the garlic then add your fajita mix and stir well then add your chicken, Cook for about 5-6 minutes until chicken is cooked. Add a little water if required.

 

To serve spread some sour cream on your wrap add some chicken, salsa, guacamole, raw bell peppers, grated cheese ( optional) then roll and enjoy!

 

Mackerel and green mango salad.

mackerel and green mango Thai salad

Ingredients:

  • 2 small mackerel or mackerel fillets
  • 1 green mango, julienned
  • 3 shallots finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp Fish Sauce
  • 2 tbsp Lime Juice
  • 2 -4 fresh red chillies sliced
  • 1 tsp red chilli flakes ( optional)
  • 1 handful of fresh mint picked and chopped
  • 1 handful coriander chopped
  • 2 tbsp unsalted roasted nuts.

Grill the mackerel unless you buy ready smoked mackerel and in that case break it into flakes.

Julienne your mango, slice your shallots and chop your herbs. Put all your chopped ingredients and the fish into a serving bowl and add your chillies, fish sauce and Lime Juice…Taste and if you wish to add a little sugar to balance the flavour or suit your palate then add it now.

Serve with noodles or some steamed plain potatoes.

N.B.

If you can’t get green mango then this salad would be lovely with mango which is just ripe but still firm which I think you could get almost anywhere in the world now…Or try a green apple which I think would be equally as good.

I hope you all enjoy these recipes until next time…Have a great weekend xxx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there will be more on this on my blog this year

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

More and more of my blogging friends have joined me on MeWe…A social media site which is fairly new and which promises much without the restrictions some other social media sites are choosing to impose on many of us…Join me if you will on  mewe.com/i/caroltaylor3 

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://carolcooks2.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a great weekend xx