Category Archives: Uncatagorised

Life on The farm… Thai Potatoes, Rice and Banana leaf wrapped desserts…

Thai potatoes which in Thai are called Man sam Farang but are also known as Cassava, Yuca or Tapioca root. It is widely grown throughout the east and north-east Thailand as cattle food and also for starch and Tapioca flour.

SAM_8849

It is a very drought resistant vegetable and there are two main sorts sweet or bitter with a hard brown outer shell and yellow or white flesh. It is the bitter one which contains more of the chemical bound cyanide.

The smaller sweet rooted varieties which are used for desserts here in Thailand like the famous Khanom man sampalang where cooking is deemed to be enough to break down the cyanide.

There are a lot of warnings about eating raw roots and how they should be prepared carefully before eating as it can cause death.

Modern thinking is that it is not as dangerous as it was originally thought to be however it is always wise to err on the side of caution.

This root should NOT be eaten raw.

Cooking is said to cause the cells to break down and the cyanide to be broken down which renders it safe to eat.

Thailand is the world’s largest importer of dried Cassava.

Down here on the farm it is grown for animal feed and to make flour. The potato is harvested when it is around 3-4months and the roots 30-45cm, harvested by hand although now some farmers use mechanical means generally the lower part of the stem is raised and the roots pulled from the ground.

cassava-285033_1920 root

It is then cut into approx 15cm pieces and sun-dried for 2 days. As cattle feed, it is high in proteins and contains tannins and is valued as a good source of roughage for cattle food.

The cassava root which is going to be used for next season’s crop is soaked and treated for termites before planting prior to the next wet season.

The remainder of the outer shell from which the flesh is extracted is sometimes used for wood or just burnt as it has no further use. The picture below is the empty root with the flesh extracted.

SAM_8852

Other uses for the root  are:

To make starch for clothing.

To make tapioca, the tapioca beads are balls of Cassava. When fermented it is called garri.

Crackers for frying as in a previous post can be made from Tapioca flour. Thai pancakes

It is used in the making of MSG ..Monosodium glutamate.

Boiled as a vegetable it is similar to British potatoes.

Now for a recipe:

dessert-1549271_1920 steamed

Khanom man sampalang is a cross between a cake and a dessert and is very popular here in Thailand. It is thick, hearty, smooth and sticky. A steamed tapioca cake.

You will need:

  • 2   cups of grated Cassava
  • 6 tbsp of tapioca flour
  • 1 tbsp of mung bean starch
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 cup of shredded coconut.
  • Food colouring

Let’s Cook!

 

Put all ingredients except salt and shredded coconut in a bowl. Mix well for 5 minutes get your hands in there and work it until the sugar has dissolved.

Add the colour and mix well to combine. Add 1/2 cup of the shredded coconut and salt and mix together. Set to one side.

Put small cups into a steamer and pour some mixture into each cup. Steam for 15 minutes then either stir in the remainder of the shredded coconut or spread over the top of the cake. before serving. If you spread over the top then it is lovely when toasted before spreading over the top of the cake.

Enjoy!

It was also time to plant some more banana trees bananas we also have trees with bananas for frying and making Somtam…A Thai salad where banana is used instead of green papaya. These ones are for eating and the trees don’t grow as tall as the other banana trees the bananas are lovely eating ones and a nice sized banana.

The rice crop is growing well but it is hard work when it is farmed the traditional way …Weeding has to be done as if you don’t then your crop will not be as bountiful but it is backbreaking we also harvest it the old way and not by machine as again you don’t get as much rice…But it is all done with a smile and it is a real community event…

         Harvest time- Rice- rural Thailand

Sticky rice and banana parcels made by Tik’s mum…we couldn’t get a smile out of her still…But? I was allowed to take photos for my blog…These banana leaf-wrapped parcels are hand made and sold almost everywhere…Always check the filling though as it varies somewhat…

25075402_10155396952754865_661740917_o

Everything is ready to make these lovely sticky rice and banana parcels

Bananas cut into halves, uncooked sticky rice ( Khao niao), sugar pot, banana leaves cut into rectangles and bamboo strips to tie the parcels. These are then cooked in hot water for 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

The halved bananas are rolled in the sticky rice..which is uncooked with a little sugar added.

They are then wrapped in the banana leaves and made into a neat little parcel tied together with the bamboo.

The parcels are then stood upright in a pot of hot water and covered with some bamboo and cooked for 2 to 2/12 hours until the rice is cooked.

sticky rice and banana

When ready you have these lovely parcels of sticky rice …These type of sweet snacks are very popular here …

These ones are what we were given yesterday by one of our Thai neighbours…It is one of the things I love about living here as when I go out walking I see chillies, mushrooms, fish or meat drying in the sun…Like these little parcels below the coconut was hand grated from the drupe, the bean curd mixed in a bowl by hand and grandma was sitting in the shade cutting the squares from the banana leaves always a proper family affair…They are then steamed as the ones above were…Such a lovely pace of family life…

The brown you can see through the yellow outer is coconut mixed with tamarind the yellow is a type of bean curd which is slightly chewy…

I do hope that you enjoy my tales of life on the farm and can see how many things are still made and harvested the traditional way…

Until next time stay safe and laugh a lot …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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dogs are not our whole life but they make our life whole… Saangchai and Soi Dogs…

Having just returned from my few days away I am still playing catchup…So I thought as Saangchai missed me I would repost one of his earlier posts which also has a link to Soi Dogs the wonderful organisation where we got Saangchai from…Without them, there would be so many more stray dogs on the streets…I will now hand you over to Saangchai…

Yeah…I get to chat with you…Woof…First time in a while but hopefully my mistress will let me on here much more… For now, this is an earlier one I wrote when I was just a puppy… Now I am grown up I don’t chew any more…and I let her friends in now although I do give them the once over a little warning scowl( growl)…

 

SAM_7055

It just fell apart!

It seems like everything I just “lick” falls apart…….well maybe..just maybe I chew it a little bit……Hey, peeps welcome to my Monday blog… have you noticed that I don’t say ” woof ” so often?

It ‘s because my mistress…. she doesn’t like it and I think I am just going to have to do as I am told.

Her friends came round..again!……..So I barked… well I did growl too……but they came in any way and my mistress she got her…you will do as you are told voice on…and kept saying NO!

What’s a boy to do?  anyway I gave one last  ” woof ” and lay down beside her…but that lady seemed very nice, I slowly crept under the table towards her….she let me lick and smell her hand…she seems ok..maybe next time  I’ll be nice….she smelt of lots of other dogs so maybe she has forever dogs too..she must be ok…..my mistress is pretty cool so if she says it’s ok ….

Yehhhhh little master is here, we have so much fun…he plays and rolls about with me…today he is excited and keeps saying we are going to the beach..what’s the beach?

Anyway off we go in the truck… it wasn’t very far and I wasn’t sick..hehe…he is good fun!

Oh, this is nice and soft and I can dig holes! We run and run and went down to the water it was much bigger than that lake the other day…my mistress splashed me and it was fun…but then those things they call ” waves ” they chased me……I run off…  it scared me!

My little master and my mistress gave me lots of pats and told me it was ok…but..those waves still chased me…

SAM_7095 SAM_7096 SAM_7097 SAM_7098 SAM_7099 SAM_7100But It was fun we played ball and my little master can run really fast… just like me…my mistress wouldn’t let me off the lead…she said maybe next time…she is worried I might run off…but come on…would I?

My mistress has asked me if I can tell you my lovely readers about “Soi  Dogs”..she was watching something yesterday and she kept wiping her eyes ..these humans are silly sometimes ….she cuddled me and was really sad for a little while…

Ok..then I’ll do it……please read this and if you can give one of my furry friends a ” forever home”  like me or just……donate some money…what’s money?  I don’t use that!

BUT ANYWAY….here is the link…. please watch it as I don’t want my mistress to be sad…….and if you help…woof, woof…I won’t bark at you if you come to my home…..DEAL?

dog meat tradehttps://www.soidog.org/

See you soon…Thanks for reading…Saangchai…Woof

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!

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

Down on The farm… Thai Potatoes…

Thai potatoes which in Thai are called Man sam Palang but are also known as Cassava, Yuca or Tapioca root. It is widely grown throughout the east and north-east Thailand as cattle food and also for starch and Tapioca flour.

SAM_8849

It is a very drought resistant vegetable and there are two main sorts sweet or bitter with a hard brown outer shell and yellow or white flesh. It is the bitter one which contains more of the chemical bound cyanide.

The smaller sweet rooted varieties which are used for desserts here in Thailand like the famous Khanom man sampalang where cooking is deemed to be enough to break down the cyanide.

There are a lot of warnings about eating raw roots and how they should be prepared carefully before eating as it can cause death.

Modern thinking is that it is not as dangerous as it was originally thought to be however it is always wise to err on the side of caution.

This root should NOT be eaten raw.

Cooking is said to cause the cells to break down and the cyanide to be broken down which renders it safe to eat.

Thailand is the world’s largest importer of dried Cassava.

Down here on the farm it is grown for animal feed and to make flour. The potato is harvested when it is around 3-4months and the roots 30-45cm, harvested by hand although now some farmers use mechanical means generally the lower part of the stem is raised and the roots pulled from the ground.

cassava-285033_1920 root

It is then cut into approx 15cm pieces and sun-dried for 2 days. As cattle feed, it is high in proteins and contains tannins and is valued as a good source of roughage for cattle food.

The cassava root which is going to be used for next season’s crop is soaked and treated for termites before planting prior to the next wet season.

The remainder of the outer shell from which the flesh is extracted is sometimes used for wood or just burnt as it has no further use. The picture below is the empty root with the flesh extracted.

SAM_8852

Other uses for the root  are:

To make starch for clothing.

To make tapioca, the tapioca beads are balls of Cassava. When fermented it is called garri.

Crackers for frying as in a previous post can be made from Tapioca flour. Thai pancakes

It is used in the making of MSG ..Monosodium glutamate.

Boiled as a vegetable it is similar to British potatoes.

Now for a recipe:

dessert-1549271_1920 steamed

Khanom man sampalang is a cross between a cake and a dessert and is very popular here in Thailand. It is thick, hearty, smooth and sticky. A steamed tapioca cake.

You will need:

2   cups of grated Cassava

6 tbsp of tapioca flour

1 tbsp of mung bean starch

1/2 cup of sugar

1/2 cup of coconut milk

1 cup of shredded coconut.

Food colouring

Let’s Cook!

 

Put all ingredients except salt and shredded coconut in a bowl. Mix well for 5 minutes get your hands in there and work it until the sugar has dissolved.

Add the colour and mix well to combine. Add 1/2 cup of the shredded coconut and salt and mix together. Set to one side.

Put small cups into a steamer and pour some mixture into each cup. Steam for 15 minutes then either stir in the remainder of the shredded coconut or spread over the top of the cake. before serving. If you spread over the top then it is lovely toasted before spreading over the top of the cake.

Enjoy!

It was also time to plant some more banana trees as the land has been built up and there are lots of bananas for frying and making Somtam…A Thai salad where banana is used instead of green papaya. These ones are for eating and the trees don’t grow as tall as the other banana trees the bananas are lovely eating ones and a nice sized banana. The rice has just been planted also and it is fingers crossed that this last downpour didn’t wash all the rice away…Time will tell.

I hope that you enjoyed this trip down on the farm. Some more posts on life in rural Thailand can be found on my Niume posts.

I do hope that you enjoy my tales of life on the farm. This week’s post was going to be about our new baby turkeys which we went to collect on Saturday. Unfortunately, there was very high winds and very heavy torrential rains during this last week and the chicks got too cold and died. I was so sad as we were looking forward to getting them and settling them into their new home. The plus side was we got to see the baby calves one which had only just been born which will be our next acquisition. He was so very cute and beautiful.

 

Until next time stay safe and laugh a lot …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wat Pa Phu Kon, Issan, Northern Thailand

Standing proud on top of a hill in 400 acres of lush green fields and forests  surrounded by other hills  is this beautiful little known temple, unless you have a Thai connection or live in Issan many people are not aware that it even exists. It has a stunning aqua blue roof and literally sparkles in the sunlight and the blue of the roof reflect of the blue sky so there this is shimmering bright blue aura around the temple, it is sight to behold.

It is very popular with Thais and we arrived on one of the busiest of days a holy Buddha day luckily we had left early but even so the queue for the trucks to take us to the top of the hill was fairly long but we were shaded by the trees which surround this lovely temple.

You can drive to the top of the hill but on busy days like this they have trucks to ferry you upwards as the car park at the top is very small for the amount of cars there would be.

The dress code is very strict here. No sleeveless t/shirts or blouses, No shorts or skirts above the knee. Thai style skirts or trousers will be lent to you in the event your dress is unsuitable.

It is quite a new temple and very clean and bright it has spectacular views of the surrounding countryside and although very busy on this holy Buddha day has an aura of peace and calm.

Nga snakes guard the entrance to the main temple and inside is a stunning white marble reclining Buddha which is made out of 43 blocks of exquisite Italian Carrara marble each weighing 15-30 tons each block. The cost of building this  was in excess of 50 million baht and was a generous donation by an elderly Thai lady in honour of the king.This temple also houses  lots of carvings and numerous other Buddha images in gold and marble. The wall painting show a story of ten reincarnations of Buddha. It is beautiful to see.

We were met with the sight of many people holding prayer mats and walking and praying as they circled the reclining Buddha, it is lovely to see people laying bare their faith and love for Buddha it is something which always humbles me here wherever people feel the need to pray  they do…..

If you live in Issan or ever travel to here it is a beautiful temple and worth the visit.The isolation and peaceful natural environment makes this an ideal place for meditation so if you crave solitude and tranquility then this is the place for you.

I hope you enjoyed this little tour around this lovely temple.

Until next time stay safe and laugh a lot and if you want to share this post with your friends I would be honoured.

Willie Wonka…

GENE Wilder

The man who enthralled millions of children and adults has  sadly passed away aged 83.

One of our families favorite films and in fact it was only a few weeks ago that we watched it AGAIN for the zillionth time.

And not for the last. time..I couldn’t count how many times we watched it and even the luscious Johnny Depp was never Willy Wonka in our eyes there is only one Willy Wonka and that was Gene Wilder.

So rest in peace Mr. Gene Wilder because you sure must have had a golden ticket to get upstairs to see the big man.

Gene Wilder    11-06 1933 to 29-08-2016      You will live on forever in lots of children’s hearts and their childrens, childrens hearts.

R.I.P

 

A-Z Challenge “D”(People Edition) 4th Post.

Oh dear…

I spent a good part of yesterday stalking blogs and lo and behold without trying today this lovely lady appeared https://divyadeepakrao.com/

This blog https://divyadeepakrao.com/ is a dream not only does it have delicious  recipes that are Indian spicy and amazing..it is ad FREE. It is a mixture of travel, food and some amazing art.

Divya is  an artist, teacher and  blogger who at one time had three separate blogs and has now merged them into one. Her photographs are amazing and complement this lovely blog.

Divya is an amateur baker and cake decorator . She experiments as well as  using treasured family recipes from the  South India of her childhood. Her recipes are all vegetarian and egg free unless Divya states in the recipe.

Her blog …A love story of New York… is beautifully written, you must visit this lovely blog to appreciate the work of Divya…..her artistry is also beautiful and I love her table. Lovingly hand painted…

Divya Isn’t it beautiful?

 

so pop along and explore https://divyadeepakrao.com/  you will not be disappointed 🙂

 

While I have been researching blogs my two biggest bugbears have been ads, comments(grrrr) and Gravatar…yes folks it’s that word again! Boy is this list growing… it could be a seperate blog soon….No!

And ” Just Saying” my baby Luffa is doing great…. still growing at an amazing pace 😉

Thank you Divya for agreeing to help me with my blog challenge…..I hope people enjoy your blog as much as I do 🙂

Oh and nearly forget to mention Gary who is the cause of my headaches…lol..but love the challenge   https://gapawa.com/2016/05/24/a-z-challenge-people-edition/

Phew this like doing an Oscar speech…   😉

 

 

26 Week Letter Challenge “N”

It’s that time again just seen the lovely Lori’s ” N’ to view hers please click https://lumar1298.wordpress.com/2016/06/19/26-weeks-letter-challenge-n/

What have I got for ” N” am away to peruse my photos…back soon 😉

Nest” The baby birds nesting outside my lounge window. Mouths wide open calling mama bird….

nesting birds

Nam Doc Nua (Thai Beef Salad)

For the recipe click here https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2014/11/25/if-you-can-dream-it-you-can-do-it/

009

 

Noodles”

This is one of my favorite Thai dishes…yellow curry with soft noodles and topped with crispy noodles and plenty of chilli….It’s a hot one!

SAM_6957

Well I hope you have enjoyed my ” N ” as much as I have trawling through my photo albums..so until next time when it’s ” O ”