Tag Archives: Beetroot Tartare

Christmas Special #A traditional Christmas Menu…

Thank you to everyone who made such lovely comments on my vegetarian Christmas menu it was a menu of dishes I cook at home but apart from devising a menu for home, I don’t publish a menu as a general rule.

This week’s menu is a mix of the traditional with a couple of other dishes thrown in…I always like to make at least one new dish every Christmas some I never make again as they were ok…Just not that memorable…You know what I mean, don’t you…?

Prawn Cocktail

As far back as I can remember Prawn Cocktail has been a must-have for our Christmas starter…..One year I fancied a change and we had a fantastic fresh seafood platter with Oysters, Langoustines everything you could think of and some Thai dips made by the daughter in Law…The only way to…eat Oysters.

But we also had to have Prawn Cocktail….I think I would get lynched if I didn’t make it and the sauce has evolved over the years. This is one of our family traditions a topic which Norah was talking about on her blog today…How as we enjoy another Christmas we trot out the traditions some of which are passed down through the generations like the prawn cocktail…my mother used to make it and now I do and my children, of course, the recipe has evolved we also make new traditions as our children grow up and our families evolve…

I now add horseradish for that extra bite. Some add Tabasco or Worcestershire sauce but we like it with just horseradish and I use Salad cream instead of mayonnaise. Sometimes I mix the two it just depends on how I feel on the day. But as with anything it is personal taste so play with the sauce and find how you like it best.

Ingredients:

• 500gm of Cooked Prawns, peeled.
• 4 tbsp Tomato Ketchup
• 5 tbsp Salad Cream or mayonnaise or a mixture of both.
• 2-4 tsp hot Horseradish Sauce.
• Salt and freshly ground Pepper.
• 3 tsp Lime Juice.
• Shredded Iceberg lettuce

To Garnish:

Tomatoes sliced, Paprika pepper, Extra prawns …I leave the tails on these.

Let’s Cook!

Mix tomato ketchup, salad cream together. Add horseradish sauce, lime juice, salt and black pepper.

At this stage, I taste and adjust the seasoning and add more of whatever I need to…. generally horseradish.

Chill in the fridge until ready to serve.

To serve: Put some shredded lettuce in individual serving dishes with cucumber if using. Put a generous serving of the cocktail sauce on top. Sprinkle with Paprika. Garnish the dish with Prawns, A slice of lemon and tomatoes if using.

Crab, Coconut, Chilli and Coriander Soup.

I use fresh crab for this soup as it is readily available and picked here but you could use tinned crab.

Ingredients

• 500 gm crab meat
• 4 cups of crab or fish stock
• 1 large tomato chopped and peeled
• 1 cup of coconut milk
• 1 onion finely chopped
• 1 celery stick chopped
• 2 cloves of garlic crushed
• 1 fresh red chilli, chopped and seeded ( if req) I don’t
• 2 tbsp of olive oil
• Juice of 1 lime
• Salt to taste
• 3 tbsp of freshly chopped coriander
• Lime wedges and hot chilli oil to serve.

Let’s Cook

Heat the oil in a pan over low heat. Stir in the onions and celery and saute for about 5 mins until the onion is soft and translucent.

Add the garlic and the chilli stir to combine well and cook for a further 2 mins.

Add the tomato and half of the coriander and turn up the heat and cook stirring for 3 minutes then add the stock. Bring to a soft rolling boil and simmer for 5 minutes.

Stir in the crab and the coconut milk and simmer for a further 5 mins.

The soup should be thick but not too thick so add some water if required.

Stir in the lime juice and remaining coriander and season as required with salt.

Serve in hot bowls with the chilli oil and lime wedges on the side.

Beetroot Tartare.

Ingredients:

• 160 gm of cooked beetroot.
• 1 tsp of extra virgin olive oil
• 1 tbsp of double cream

For Fried Capers:
• 10 capers
• Oil to fry about 3 tbsp.

For the crispbread:
• 2 very thin slices of stale bread
• 1 tbsp of olive oil.

Let’s Cook!

Make the crispbreads by cutting the bread into squares allow 3 to 4 squares per person.

Heat the grill on its highest setting and put the bread on a tray and drizzle with the oil. Grill on each side for 1-2 mins until crisp and golden being careful not to burn (like I did)

To make the tartare, finely chop half the beetroot and blitz the other half with the olive oil to make a rough paste, and then combine with the chopped beetroot and cream and season to taste.

Rinse the capers and pat dry then heat the oil in a frying pan over a high heat add the capers and fry for 30 seconds until they have started to open up then drain on kitchen paper.

To serve: Place a 6-8cm ring on a plate and put in some beetroot mix then remove the ring.
Garnish with capers and the crispbread.

Pigs in Blankets. – Christmas dinner would not be complete without them, would it?

• 8 thin slices smoked bacon
• 16 chipolata sausages
• I tsp Worcestershire Sauce
• 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
• 2 tbsp clear honey.

To prepare

Mix honey, thyme and Worcestershire sauce in a small bowl, add sausages and make sure they are coated in the mix. Cut bacon down the middle longways. Wrap bacon around sausages.

To freeze now put in a container and separate the layers with greaseproof then remove from the freezer on Christmas morning and cook as below

Put sausages on a baking sheet well spaced apart.

Cook on 180 for about 30 minutes until nicely browned and bacon is crispy.

Crispy Roast Potatoes.

I always parboil my potatoes and give them a good shake before putting them into a hot pan with some duck fat and roast…Basting and turning every 30 minutes until nice and golden.

To jazz your roasties up a little add some herb butter, garlic and or rosemary sprigs.

Brussel Sprouts.

Christmas dinner would not be the same without a bowl of Brussel sprouts and there are many ways you can cook these lovely little cabbages and even people who don’t like sprouts …Love them!

My spicy pan-fried Brussels come very close or top depending on whether you are bacon or a chilli fan…

I love just plain little Brussels lightly steamed or boiled with my Christmas dinner. Sautéed with bacon they are to die for…

This recipe serves 4 people.

• 1lb of Brussel sprouts trimmed and halved
• 1 tbsp of olive oil
• 1-2 garlic cloves
• 1 tbsp of cumin seeds
• 2 tsp of balsamic vinegar
• 6 shallots peeled and quartered
• Chilli flakes and chopped fresh chives to garnish.

Let’s cook!

Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, add the garlic and shallots and stir fry for 3-4 minutes until the shallots just start to turn golden.

Sprinkle in the cumin seeds and add the sprouts. Stir fry for 3-4 minutes over medium heat then reduce the heat and cover the pan, cook for a further 4-5 minutes or until the sprouts are almost tender.

Sprinkle over the balsamic vinegar and let it cook just for a few seconds. Season the sprouts to taste with salt and cracked black pepper.

Garnish with chilli flakes and chopped chives.

A beautiful side dish with your Christmas dinner.

Broccoli with red chilli and anchovies.

Ingredients:

• 300 gm tender stem broccoli, trimmed and cut lengthways
• 3 tbsp Olive Oil
• 1 Onion finely chopped
• 2 cloves of garlic crushed
• 2 anchovy fillets drained and finely chopped
• 1 red chilli finely chopped
• Juice of half a lime
• Parmesan shavings

Let’s Cook

Blanch the broccoli for 3 minutes in boiling water and then drain. Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat add the chopped onions and cook for 5 minutes or until the onion is golden brown.

Add the garlic, anchovies and red chilli and cook for 1 minute.

Add the blanched broccoli and fry for 2-3 minutes or until broccoli is tender.

Squeeze over the lime juice and season to taste with salt and pepper and toss together.

Top with parmesan shavings

Bacon, Chestnut and Cranberry Christmas Stuffing.

Ingredients:

• 450g sausage meat
• 2 rashers unsmoked back bacon, cut into strips
• 100g dried cranberries
• 50ml ruby port
• 1 small onion, chopped
• 50g butter
• 2 garlic cloves, chopped
• 140g fresh white or brown breadcrumbs
• 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
• ½ tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
• 140g peeled, cooked chestnuts, roughly chopped
• 1 medium egg, beaten

Let’s Cook!

Soak the cranberries in the port for an hour.

Fry the onion and bacon gently in the butter, until the onion is tender and the bacon is cooked.

Add the garlic and fry for another minute or so.
Cool slightly, and then mix with all the remaining ingredients, including the cranberries and port, adding enough egg to bind I find it easiest to use my hands so get those hands in and mix thoroughly.

Next, I do a little tester; in fact, I generally do that with all my stuffing as it is the only way to tell if the seasoning is correct. Fry a knob of stuffing in a little butter, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

This stuffing can be baked in a dish or rolled into balls that will be crisp on the outside and moist inside.

Bake in a greased dish at 190C/gas 5/fan 170C for about 40 minutes, until browned and, in the case of sausage meat stuffing, cooked right through.

Alternatively, roll into balls that are about 4cm in diameter. Roast the stuffing balls in hot fat (they can be tucked around the turkey or done in a roasting tin of their own) for 30-40 minutes, until crisp and nicely browned on the outside.

Cranberry Sauce.

Ingredients

• 3 cups or 12oz of cranberries.
• The juice of 2 large Oranges.
• A cup of sugar.
• 1 stick of cinnamon.

Let’s Cook

Put all the ingredients in a heavy-bottomed pan, bring to the boil and turn down so it is still a rolling boil and cook for 10 mins if ( using) frozen berries or 20 minutes if using fresh cranberries as they will take a bit longer to pop.

Allow mixture to cool and put in an airtight container and refrigerate.

Bread Sauce

Freeze the breadcrumbs ready to use (I always) keep a bag of frozen breadcrumbs in the freezer. The sauce can be made the day before and reheated on the day… I have been surprised living here that many people have not heard of bread sauce my mum always made it at Christmas we couldn’t have turkey without bread sauce…

Ingredients:

About half loaf of good quality stale white bread either broken into smallish pieces or can blitz into breadcrumbs if you like a smoother sauce.
• I brown Onion peeled and studded with cloves.
• 2 bay leaves.
• Salt & Pepper.
• About half-pint of milk.

Let’s Cook!

Pour milk into a saucepan and add the clove-studded onion. Slowly bring to boil and turn down and let gently simmer for 5 minutes.

Remove from heat and allow to cool.

When cool remove Onion and bay leaves. This can be reheated to serve or made the day before and kept covered in the fridge. It is quite a thick consistency so if too thin add some more bread if too thick some more milk.

If it was down to me and there were only two of us for Christmas Dinner then I would have something like this lovely quail with Juniper Sauce.

Juniper Berry Sauce:

Ingredients:

• 1 banana shallot peeled and finely chopped.
• 8 juniper berries very lightly crushed.
• 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped.
• 1/2 tsp sugar
• 200 ml white burgundy or a dry white wine.
• 4 tbsp white wine vinegar
• 40 gm butter
• 25 gm flour
• 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves.
• 3oo ml venison stock
• 100 ml double cream
• Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Let’s Cook!

Put the shallot, garlic, sugar, white wine vinegar, juniper berries, white wine and the fresh thyme in a pan and bring to the boil.

Lower the heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes this needs to reduce to about 2 tbsp.

In another pan melt the butter and whisk in the flour to make a roux. Strain your wine reduction through a fine sieve and still whisking…we don’t want a lumpy sauce now do we? Add the wine reduction….keep whisking!

Pick out the juniper berries from the strained mix in your sieve and add to the sauce. Keep whisking and add the stock slowly ….to the sauce a ladle at a time. Cook the sauce for 10 minutes or until it coats the back of a spoon.

Finally, pour in the cream and bring to a very slow simmer. Remove from the heat and season. The sauce can be used immediately or reheated when it is needed.

This is a beautiful sauce over when poured over a luscious piece of beautifully cooked venison or my favourite quail… if you have guests for dinner or just for the two of you for that special occasion.

Enjoy!

Christmas Pudding

Christmas Dinner would not be complete without a little bit of Christmas Pudding and I love to see the Christmas Pudding flaming as we pour over the brandy it looks so nice.

For those of you who don’t like Christmas pudding or want a lighter dessert this lovely crème caramel fits the bill perfectly.

Crème Caramel.

For the caramel
• 160g/6oz sugar
• unsalted butter for greasing the ramekins

For the custard
• 4 free-range eggs
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
• 25g/1oz caster sugar
• 600ml/1 pint full-fat milk
• pouring cream, to serve ( optional)

Let’s Cook!

Pre-heat oven 150C/300F/Gas 2.

Warm the ramekins in the oven, so they are warm when the caramel is poured in.

First, make the caramel. Pour the sugar and six tablespoons of water into a clean stainless steel pan.

Dissolve the sugar slowly, stirring with a wooden spoon over low heat.

When there are no sugar granules left, stop stirring and boil until the sugar turns a dark copper colour.

Remove immediately from the heat to ensure the caramel does not burn. Quickly pour the caramel into the warmed ramekins.

Set aside to cool and become hard. (Do not put in the fridge because the sugar will absorb moisture and go soft and tacky).

Once hard, butter the sides of the ramekins above the level of the caramel.

For the custard

Whisk the eggs, vanilla extract and caster sugar together in a bowl until well mixed.

Pour the milk into a saucepan, gently heat over low heat until you can still just dip your finger in for a moment, then strain the milk through a fine sieve onto the egg mixture in the bowl.

Whisk together until smooth, and then pour the mixture into the prepared ramekins.

Stand the ramekins in a roasting tin and fill the tin half-way with boiling water from a kettle.

Cook in the oven for about 20-30 minutes or until the custard has set.

Do not overcook the custard – check around the edges of the dishes, to make sure no bubbles are appearing.

Take the crème caramels out of the oven, remove the ramekins from the tray and set on a cooling rack. When cool, transfer to the fridge overnight so that the caramel is absorbed into the custard.

To serve, loosen the sides of the custard by tipping the ramekin and loosen with a small palette knife around the edges. Place a serving dish on top of the ramekin and turn upside down. Serve with pouring cream or decorate with some fruit…

I hope you find something to like about this menu and that one of these dishes will be your new addition to your Christmas menu xxx

 

CarolCooks2…Weekly roundup… week ending 24th Nov 2019…

Welcome to this week’s roundup and do I have some goodies for you…Lots of things going on in the world …The election in the UK is gathering momentum…I have watched a few live clashes between the leaders of the parties and to say I am not impressed by much is an understatement…Here all is well and sunny …We had some aftershocks from the earthquake in neighboring Laos the other day…my bed shook somewhat and made me jump out rather quickly but that’s all nothing major…

Let’s see what I had for you this week….Enjoy!

Monday…Recycling and climate change…

circular recycling the world and a green leafAll good news though and there is a lot of that… it is not all doom and gloom…but we have to have hope and there is a lot to make us hopeful for but please remember there is a lot we can do to bring hope to many more around the world who maybe have no hope and just maybe we can help give them hope.

https://carolcooks2.com/2019/11/18/recycling-and-climate-change-the-good-no-the-great-news/

Tuesday…Mistletoe and Wine…

 

In the run-up to Christmas, you will find everything here from recipes to trivia and traditions…I would also ask that when you are shopping for presents, food, and decorations that you think about its origin and how it was produced…carbon footprint, child labour…Please think about can the packaging be recycled or reused…Do you really need it? Every little helps…x

https://carolcooks2.com/2019/11/19/mistletoe-and-wine-christmas-cheer/

Wednesday…Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Food Column with Carol Taylor – #Thanksgiving/#Christmas Traditional Menu…

This week Sally very kindly republished my Christmas Menu which is also ideal for Thanksgiving…Lots of choices for all the courses and no I don’t make them all for our Christmas Meal may be a choice of two starters and desserts but just one main course…I hope you find something which tickles your tastebuds…

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/11/20/smorgasbord-blog-magazine-the-food-column-with-carol-taylor-thanksgiving-christmas-traditional-menu/

Wednesday…Whimsical Wednesdays with Moi…Carol Taylor…

The Christmas adverts have started I think the adverts are sometimes better than the TV programs… every year they seem to get better and better…I use u tube a lot and based on U tube views….Mogs Christmas is tops…I wonder if any of this year’s ads will knock it off its top spot…? That little dragon is cute… I just loved him…

https://carolcooks2.com/2019/11/20/whimsical-wednesday-with-carol-19/

Wednesday…Sally very kindly added my post to her daily blogger where she promotes bloggers from around the world…Today I was with one of my favourite bloggers who has cooked a wonderful blueberry pie and Debbie the dog lady with a wonderful heartwarming tale…I was in excellent company and of course my teammate Sally…xx

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/11/20/smorgasbord-blogger-daily-wednesday-20th-november-2019-christmas-carol-taylor-dogsitter-debbie-the-doglady-odessa1941-blueberrypie-by-dolly-aizenman/

Thursday…Christmas and more recipes and trivia…

I love Christmas and all the glitz, kitsch and trivia…BUT…I also remember the little things, the traditions and Christmas here is not so frantic…Thais do not celebrate Christmas…I am the only one where I live who has a tree and lights but my Thai neighbours always bring me a little gift and honour our Chrismas as we honour their festivals…I was very touched when they did that on our first Christmas here…

https://carolcooks2.com/2019/11/21/christmas-tis-the-season/

Friday…The Culinary Alphabet…The letter V…

You will find me once a month over at Esme’s where I work hard to find unusual foods and cooking methods on my trawl through the culinary alphabet…This month I started with food which could be a dessert or a savoury meal…Which is Vacherin which is a beautiful French meringue dessert or it is a cheese to read more please click the link below…

https://esmesalon.com/the-culinary-alphabet-the-letter-v/

Friday…Christmas …in my house…

Where I took you down to the farm and told you about our black chicken one of which will be part of our Christmas dinner …I also discussed whether or not stuffing is what you call it or dressing…an interesting debate and lastly I gave you some recipes for starters for either your Thanksgiving dinner or Christmas dinner which I hope you will enjoy…x

https://carolcooks2.com/2019/11/22/christmasin-my-housetraditions-treats-and-a-touch-of-trivia/

Lastly, I reblogged a post from Sally…which disturbed me greatly…It is about the debate on whether or not to vaccinate your child and the fallout from those decisions…New statistics out show that as many as 6 children per hour are hospitalised in the UK with pneumonia…That is appalling and scary and the result of not having vaccinated your child…#recommended read.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/11/18/smorgasbord-health-column-pneumonia-pneumonia-appalling-statistics-six-children-per-hour-hospitalised-in-the-uk/

I read Jane’s blog this morning and it resonated with me so I would like to share it with you…It puts Christmas into perspective ...It is only a short read but very pertinent please if Christmas makes you frantic …Pop over and have a read and remember there are always unicorns…x

Image by Stefan Keller from Pixabay

That’s all for now ..Enjoy your weekend xxx

Lastly, remember not everyone is fortunate and some people dread this time of year be aware and if you can add a little cheer please share your joy but also remember the other 364 days of the year pass your smile around and be kind… 

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.

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 great weekend 🙂 xx

Whimsical Wednesday…with Carol…

Welcome to my world and whimsical Wednesdays…

The battle of the Christmas ads has started…and every year they seem to get better and better…I use u tube a lot and based on U tube views….Mogs Christmas is tops…I wonder if any of this year’s ads will knock it off its top spot…? That little dragon is cute…

I love this because of the safety aspect…dodgy Christmas lights, it promotes reading and that is always a good thing and mainly…Kindness…

We should remember those less fortunate than ourselves at Christmas …BUT …That old saying of Christmas comes but once a year is also true …What about the other 364 days?

Please be kind and take it a step further…Social media is wonderful but it can also be so very cruel…Please think before you comment and before you share…Or better still do what I did the other day…

More and more I am seeing cruel, nasty comments on FB…There are many things we see which we may like, we may agree with, it may not be our opinion BUT we live in a democracy and I was brought up to keep it buttoned if I didn’t have something nice to say…Above all if you do have something to say don’t make it personal especially in these upcoming elections…I also see it on celebrity pages people get personal to me that is not on …Have your say everyone has a right to have a say whether we agree or not…Be nice and don’t get personal…

If we all did that the trolls couldn’t and wouldn’t prosper...Nuff said…

Did you know? The first artificial Christmas tree was made of goose feathers…Originating in Germany over 100 years ago and was meant to replicate the snow-covered fir trees in the forests…Now they come in all shapes, sizes, and mediums, we have leaves and glitter and so many colours…Nothing beats a real tree though especially if you can dog it up and replant it again my dad used to do that and they were pretty resilient they came up bigger and better the next year…He did that until they got too big and then started again.

I even love just a twig or a branch decorated quite simply they look stunning and with all this wind and rain I am sure on your travels you might see a small branch which has broken off which would be ideal…

When my children little we used to make our own chocolate decorations it was good fun…This video shows you how to make chocolate Christmas trees, simple and easy to do and they look lovely…

 

Time for some music…

I am taking a trip down memory lane here…I remember quite clearly singing along with What do you want to make those eyes at me for…Moon River…Return Sender…I love me a bit of Elvis…

1959 WHAT DO YOU WANT TO MAKE THOSE EYES AT ME FOR? EMILE FORD & THE CHECKMATES
1960 I LOVE YOU CLIFF RICHARD & THE SHADOWS
1961 MOON RIVER DANNY WILLIAMS
1962 RETURN TO SENDER ELVIS PRESLEY
1963 I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND THE BEATLES
1964 I FEEL FINE THE BEATLES
1965 DAY TRIPPER/WE CAN WORK IT OUT THE BEATLES

Each week until Christmas I will pick my favourite. from the chart I publish..The Beatles are in town three years on the trot…on this chart…Out of all these my favourite? It has to be Moon River followed by Elvis…I liked the Beatles but I wasn’t an out and out fan…there were no, out and out Christmas tunes in the early ’60s or if there were any they didn’t top the charts…

Time for a story…

The Charade

 Chapter 12

 by SC Richmond

 

download-3the-charade

Carl hurried towards her and swept her into his arms.

   “You look lovely, so beautiful, that dress, is it one of George’s grandson’s designs?”

   She wriggled free, blushing “Yes” she stammered. She was about to tell Carl about her wonderful discovery but something stopped her. Something wasn’t right… Carl sounded strange, something was up. He always seemed to appear, no matter where she was, she was beginning to feel as if he was watching and waiting for her. It was beginning to make her feel uneasy.

“What time shall I pick you up tonight Cinders?

He laughed at his own joke. The girl was no longer excited about going but knew she had to make the effort.

‘Is seven ok?”

   Carl nodded and smiled “seven it is.”

   The girl wandered home her thoughts all in a whirl… who was he? She also decided that she would visit the shop in the morning to collect her clothes and see if she could persuade George to tell her more,,, What was he afraid of?

   The night passed in a whirl. Carl was very thoughtful and attentive, she had so many thoughts going round and round in her head that she really didn’t notice. Maybe she would find her parents. At last, she felt there was some hope. Something she hadn’t felt before.

Carl had noticed a change in her, she was preoccupied and no longer hanging on to his every word. He also noticed the admiring glances she was getting from other men and he didn’t like it one bit.

   Home, at last, she kicked of her shoes and slipped out of her dress. She hung it on a hook on the outside of the wardrobe door. She fell asleep dreaming about her dress and the young man who made it and also about what an adventure she had today and tomorrow she may find out a bit more about her mother.

For the first time in a long time, she slept like a baby, a small smile playing on her lips she dreamed about what she may find out and tonight those nightmares didn’t appear.

   The day dawned and she was up and dressed in no time at all. She left the flat and almost skipped to the shop she was so happy. Rounding the corner she noticed that all the shutters were still down. As she drew closer she could see a bag propped against the door. It was her clothes.

There was also a note from George telling her how beautiful she had looked in the dress and how like her mother she was but also mentioning that due to a family crisis the shop would be closed for a while. It was almost as if he was saying goodbye to her. She stood and burst into tears.

  Out of sight across the road, stood Carl… watching.

 

Tommy Steele...I can still see those twinkling eyes…He was Britains 1st rock n Roll star discovered in a coffee bar in Central London way back in the early 195o’s…

Tommy Steele was also a guest on the Six-Five Special does anyone remember that show which was presented by Pete Murray? Petula Clarke my dad liked her…Lonnie Donegan all the stars I was brought up listening to…

Like a smile kindness is infectious…xxx

A recipe… I can’t go without leaving you a recipe can I?

Music and food are an integral part of who I am…

A Christmas Starter…Beetroot Tartare…

Beetroot tartare with capers

Note my Christmas plate the tartare hides the father Christmas…The recipe can be found here …xx

That’s all from me today on Whimsical Wednesday… I hope you have enjoyed reading this post…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 are now regular columns on my blog this year. It is important that we are mindful of the world we live in…

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

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Food Column with Carol Taylor – #Thanksgiving/#Christmas Traditional Menu

I am rather proud of this menu as it was the first time I put anything like this in print…The beetroot tartare I will be making again as we loved it…I hope you enjoy reading it and find something that you love as well…Thank you, Sally, for reposting this menu…Hugs xxx

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

I little bit earlier than last year, but with Thanksgiving not until 28th of November, I thought those of you having Turkey for that celebration might enjoy some of the dishes Carol Taylorcreated for this menu.

Traditional Christmas Menu (and some ideas for Thanksgiving)

This menu is a mix of the traditional with a couple of other dishes thrown in…I always like to make at least one new dish every Christmas some I never make again as they were ok..Just not that memorable…You know what I mean don’t you…

Prawn Cocktail

As far back as I can remember Prawn Cocktail has been a must-have for our Christmas starter…..One year I fancied a change and we had a fantastic fresh seafood platter with Oysters, Langoustines everything you could think of and some Thai dips made by the daughter in Law…The only way to eat Oysters. But we also had to…

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This week in my kitchen…Beets… Buttermilk Bread…

I am so pleased you have joined me once again for a peek into my kitchen…Welcome…I am still pickling… almost run out of fridge space. I think I need a third fridge maybe one like a wine cooler would be good for pickles and things…What do you think? Bearing in mind I live in tropical climes so much has to be refrigerated…

I have always loved beetroot but it has only been since living here that I have used beetroot in different ways…I had only ever eaten it pickled with a salad…

Beetroot grows here which is good it seems that only the root vegetables that need a frost or cooler which don’t, Beetroot is also very healthy and my new favourite smoothie is Beetroot and Orange…

Red Beetroot with leaves and one cut beet

A little about the beetroot before I show you some recipes…Packed with essential vitamins, minerals and plant compounds, some of which have medicinal properties. They are low in calories and high in vitamins and minerals…

Beets have high water and low-calorie content. Both of these properties are beneficial for weight loss. I wonder if drinking the juice is what has helped kickstart my weight loss now I am drinking it regularly…

What’s more, they are delicious and easy to add to your diet.

Beetroot Chutney…I first made this when we lived in Phuket and had a request from one of our customers who was an Australian who love beets and even have beetroot in their burgers…I mean I love beetroot but in a burger but customers come first so my first foray into beetroot chutney was born and it was a hit and from that day forward on the menu at Sugar Reef…

Homemade beetroot chutney

 

 

Beetroot Chutney:

Ingredients:

  • 1.5k Beetroot.
  • 3 Brown Onions.
  • 3 Apples (Granny Smiths)
  • 450ml Balsamic vinegar.
  • 80ml Fresh Orange Juice.
  • 350gm raw sugar.
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves.
  • 2 large sprigs Rosemary.

Let’s Cook!

Set oven to 200c. Wrap Beetroot in foil and bake for 1 hour. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Chop Onions and Apples finely, chop cooled Beetroot and put in large pan.

Add remainder of ingredients. Except for Rosemary.

Stir until sugar dissolves, add Rosemary, reduce heat and simmer for at least 1 hr or until mixture thickens slightly. When ready, remove Rosemary and spoon into sterilised Jars.

Store in a cool, dark place and once open refrigerate…Can be added to your burger or eaten with cold meats…

Beetroot Tartare. The first time I made this was for Christmas last year I now make it if we feel we want a light starter or if I want just a starter and a pudding…

Beetroot tartare with capers

Ingredients:

• 160 gm of cooked beetroot.
• 1 tsp of extra virgin olive oil
• 1 tbsp of double cream or horseradish cream( our preference)

For Fried Capers:
• 10 capers
• Oil to fry about 3 tbsp.

For the crisp bread:
• 2 very thin slices of stale bread
• 1 tbsp of olive oil.

Let’s Cook!

Make the crispbreads by cutting the bread into squares allow 3 to 4 squares per person.

Heat the grill on its highest setting and put the bread on a tray and drizzle with the oil. Grill on each side for 1-2 mins until crisp and golden being careful not to burn (like I did)

To make the tartare, finely chop half the beetroot and blitz the other half with the olive oil to make a rough paste, and then combine with the chopped beetroot and cream and season to taste.

Rinse the capers and pat dry then heat the oil in a frying pan over high heat add the capers and fry for 30 seconds until they have started to open up then drain on kitchen paper.

Our favourite bakery is still not open it went from opening April to now opening soon and it is July…

So time for me to get baking…Buttermilk Bread…

Homemade Buttermilk bread

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups of lukewarm water.
  • 1 cup of Buttermilk.
  • 1 tbsp quick yeast.
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 6 1/2 cups of unbleached bread flour.

Let’s Bake!

Mix water, buttermilk, yeast, salt, sugar in a bowl. Add the flour. No need to knead..lol

Just combine all the ingredients  together..lightly cover the bowl and leave to rest/rise for 2 hrs.

The bonus of living here is dough rises quickly...I love using yeast now.

You can use the dough immediately, store covered in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 weeks.

If you are using now preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Dust the dough with flour and very lightly knead, shape into a round. Cover and rest for 90 minutes.

Oh, and I made a cut into the top of my dough just like a cross.

Bake in the middle of the oven for approx 40 minutes until golden brown and delicious.

Remove from the oven and brush the top with melted butter.

Leave to cool before slicing.

Enjoy!

I am now going to sort out my Kombucha and get this starter going…More on that next week…

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