Tag Archives: Pickled watermelon rind

CarolCooks2…This week in my kitchen…Pickled Watermelon rinds, Chicken Jalfrazi, Orange Peel…

Hello and welcome to my kitchen…From having a glut of green bananas for the last two weeks it seems watermelon is now on the menu this week…Although I like watermelon I don’t love it…It tends to be too sweet for me…which is why I love the pickled watermelon rinds the best…

This week in my Kitchen 7th Feb 2020

Who knew you could pickle watermelon rinds…? Ronit did and that was where I first discovered how to pickle them…

I am all for using the whole part of a vegetable or fruit as although yes you can compost fruit and vegetable peelings I  however much prefer to use what I can before I do that…

Did you know? You can dry and grate an avocado pit?

Kitchen Waste Tip ( 1)

Avocado pits are dried then grated with a fine grater and used in enchilada sauce. This is a traditional ingredient in parts of Northern Mexico. Don’t use too much about 1 1/2 teaspoons should do the trick or you will make the sauce bitter.

Why? The health benefits of avocado and its pit are legendary and manyfold…

avocado showing pip -1238257_640

Prefer a smoothie? 

1/2 a dried pit(enough) for 2 persons, the flesh of the avocado, green apple and cucumber and blitz for a healthy smoothie…

Prefer tea? 

Dry the pit and break it down using a spice blender. Add a tablespoon of this powder to a cup of hot water and drink it slowly.

We love Indian Curry as much as we love a Thai curry…This week we thought as we had some bell peppers to use we would make our version of a Jalfrezi.

Chicken Jalfrezi.

Ingredients:

500 gm of chicken skin removed and cut into cubes.

For marinade:

  • 2-inch piece of fresh ginger peeled and either grated or as I do I blitz it together with the garlic.
  • 4-6 pieces of garlic peeled and grated.
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp of garam masala powder
  • Salt to taste.

For the vegetable mix:

  • 200 gm of onions peeled and thickly sliced or chopped
  • 1-2 green chillies sliced
  • 250 gm fresh tomatoes quartered
  • 2 tbsp ghee/oil
  • Salt to taste.

For cooking curry gravy:

  • 2 tbsp Ghee/oil
  • 1/2-1 tsp curry powder
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste

Mix the ginger, garlic turmeric, garam masala powder and salt together. Coat the chicken and marinate for 2-3 hours.

To cook the jalfrezi heat your ghee in a wok then add your sliced onions, chillies, peppers and salt and stir fry for 5 minutes.

Add your tomato wedges and cook until the onions are translucent and the tomatoes half-cooked about 10 minutes. Lift out with a slotted spoon and set to one side.

Add 2 tbsp of ghee and heat then add your chicken pieces..sometimes I use legs or thighs. Cook on high heat for 5 mins, stirring.

Add the chilli powder and the tomato puree. lower the heat and simmer until the chicken is cooked. If it is too dry add some water we prefer a thinner sauce rather than thick and dry. Add the vegetables and cook for 5-10 mins.

smart

Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary…You can also add yoghurt/cream if using…If using a low-fat yoghurt rather than full-fat yoghurt then make sure the yoghurt is at room temperature or add some of the sauce to the yoghurt before adding back to the pan. Low-fat yoghurt can curdle.

Garnish with chopped coriander and serve with rice, mango chutney and flatbread or nan bread.

Enjoy!

Kitchen Waste Tip(2)

orange peel-1403256_640

 

Orange Peel Marinade

Dry your orange peels and then blitz to a powder…

For chicken…mix some of the powder with soy sauce and honey.

For a stew…mix some orange powder with cinnamon, rosemary and thyme.

For crumble… Add some orange powder to your topping before cooking or add to the fruit mixture.

N.B… Make sure you only dry the zest/rind remove the white pith as it will make your powder bitter.

You can also make powder with lemon or limes…great with fish marinades…

We are now in February…Did you opt and participate in Veganuary? Many people did and it was far more successful than originally thought…I didn’t although I did cut down on meat …we already eat a lot of fruit and vegetables …I have increased my purples though, Purple sweet potatoes, purple carrots, aubergines, beetroot and red cabbage and added some blueberries to my bread pudding…

The dairy industry is much maligned and is fighting back…They have decided to up the ante and we now have Februdairy…

cow-grazing

https://www.bbc.com/news/newsbeat-42990941

Of course, we could take the middle ground and look at becoming a flexitarian …Personally, that is more me and us as a family…After all, we need a healthy balanced diet and cutting out a whole food group doesn’t stack up as regards to our health.

What are your thoughts?

I am throwing this out here and inviting comments but ask that you remain polite and factual at all times…xx

Thank you for reading I invite your comments as always 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.

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 fabulous weekend xxx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This week in my Kitchen…Pickles…Thai Duck Larb…

I am so pleased you have joined me once again for a peek into my kitchen…Welcome…I pickle almost everything as we all love pickles and everything seems to have run out at once I had to eat my curry last week with no mango chutney now that to me is a crime…I was brought up in a household where every meal had its accompaniment…With lamb it was a mint sauce, with ham it was mustard, with Pork it is Apple sauce you get my meaning so you understand that curry without mango chutney is just wrong on so many levels…

Of course, I make my own pickles...Two reasons...They are imported here so expensive or I just can’t buy them here…Well, three reasons really but knowing me you know the third…Don’t you????

They are being eaten much faster lately as after living here for seven years I have finally found a source of cheese which doesn’t break the bank…As a cheese platter or cold meat, mashed potato and pickles are among hubbies favourite foods…The pickle mill is working at top speed…

Mango Chutney… Mangoes of all varieties are so plentiful here it would really be remiss of me to not make my own and it tastes so much better than some of the sweet sugary varieties which are in the supermarkets…

Ingredients:

  • 4 under-ripe Mangoes.
  • 3cm Fresh ginger finely diced.
  • 3 cloves garlic finely diced.
  • 500 gm sugar.
  • 1tsp salt.
  • 1/2-1 tsp dried chilli.
  • 1tsp cumin seeds.
  • 2 cardamom plus 4 cardamom seeds.
  • 7cm cinnamon stick.
  • 5 whole cloves.
  • 250 ml vinegar I use Apple cider but have used white vinegar and malt vinegar.
  • 5 black peppercorns crushed.

Let’s Cook!

Peel mangoes and cut in small strips.

Place mangoes in large pot Crush diced ginger and garlic in pestle and mortar and stir into mangoes.

Stir in sugar,salt,chilli,cumin,cardamom,cinnamon and cloves.Stir to blend. Cover and leave overnight at room temp. N.B. We are prone to ants here so put water into a shallow tray and put the bowl in the centre and cover  the ants won’t swim the moat..ha ha

Mango cooking in pan

Mango chutney

Next day place mangoes in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Cook stirring occasionally until the mix starts to thicken about 30-45 mins. Stir in vinegar and crushed peppercorns and cook for a further 3 minutes.

Put into warm sterilised jars. Once cooled I keep in the fridge where if you live in cooler climes a cool larder will be fine. This makes 3 medium-sized jars.

Watermelon is well in season now and freshly picked from the farm they are beautiful ..not so red as the ones you purchase in the stores but they are treated to enhance the red colour down on the farm we do not use any chemical treatments…

 

READY TO PICK WATERMELON

How often have you bought a watermelon and thrown away the rind?? Hands up! I have or I did until I discovered a lovely recipe for Pickled Watermelon Rind.

Now I make a lot of pickles and this one thing I hadn’t thought of pickling… you live and learn, don’t you?

Ingredients:

  • 4lb of Watermelon
  • 1 chilli thinly sliced
  • 1-inch piece fresh ginger finely sliced or diced
  • 2 Star Anise
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 4 tsp salt I use fresh mineral salt dried here
  • 1 cup of rice vinegar
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 tsp tamarind pulp ( optional)

Let’s Cook!

Using a vegetable peeler remove the outer green rind and slice the watermelon into I inch slices. Cut away all but 1/4 inch of the flesh (it is) the white part we are pickling. The red flesh I keep for smoothies or ice cream or a nice salad with feta cheese.

Then cut the rind into 1-inch pieces.

pickled watermelon rind

Add the chilli, ginger, star anise, salt, pepper, rice vinegar and sugar plus a ½ cup of water together in a pan, bring the mixture to a rolling boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar then turn down the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the watermelon rind and bring back to a rolling boil and then again reducing the heat to a simmer for 5 mins or until the rinds are just tender. Remove the pan from the heat, and leave the liquid to cool down. You may need to weigh the watermelon down with a plate or lid, as it needs to stay submerged in the liquid until cool.

Once cooled then transfer to a container with a well fitting lid and refrigerate for at least 12 hours before you eat…This will keep refrigerated for about 2/3 weeks if it lasts that long…lol

My daughter in law took some of this to her village and they loved it …I thought maybe it would be too vinegary for them but no although they did suggest that next time I made it add some tamarind which I think( as) I love Tamarind is a great idea.

Another great idea which I only saw today on Masterchef when the challenge was to cook and not waste anything…Larissa made a beautiful Tiramisu French toast with a passion fruit compote…That ticked all my boxes and something I will be making…She used the whole of the passionfruit just cut it in half and blitzed it…Just like this…It was a beautiful red colour it looked glorious…topping that French toast…The only thing missing was some crispy bacon…

  • For the Passionfruit Compote, cut the passionfruit in half place the whole halves with 70ml water into a high-speed blender and process on high speed until smooth.
  • Pour into a small saucepan, add the sugar and place over low heat. Simmer gently for 20 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in the lemon juice, to taste and set aside.

 

Lastly, Pickled onions …

Ingredients…

  • 2 lb Pickling Onions, peeled.
  • 11/2 pints pickling vinegar…I use white vinegar or a mix of apple cider and white vinegar.
  • 2tbsp Pickling spices or your mix…again I mix black, white peppercorns, coriander seeds.

Method2 days before mix 2pts water with 4 oz salt pour over onions, cover and keep in a cool place. I keep in the fridge due to the heat here.

Home made pickled onions

Then drain onions and pat dry. Pack into sterilised jars layering pickling spices as you go then pour vinegar over the onions making sure they are completely covered. Store for 4-6 weeks and they ready…They are the crispest onions I have eaten, far better than shop bought and generally don’t get to 4 weeks let alone 6 weeks as they get dipped into …men!

Recycling Corner… Crayola Crayons/Markers/Felt tips

coloured markers

Dead markers NEED NOT end up in landfills or our oceans. Did you know that Crayola has a program called ColorCycle? Crayola ColorCycle will accept all brands of plastic markers, not just Crayola markers.

That includes dry erase markers & highlighters. If you collect the dead markers, they’ll send you a free shipping label & you can ship them back to Crayola to be recycled!

Great idea whether you have kids or not or you could start a communal box among you closest neighbours or friends and ship them for free…

My last recipe is a version of Thai Larb made with duck…

Thai Duck Larb

Ingredients…Serves 1-2 people.

  • 200 gm Duck (Pork or chicken mince.)
  • 3 shallots finely sliced.
  • 2 spring onions finely sliced green tops as well.
  • A handful of fresh Mint, pick the leaves from the stem and tear the leaves into large pieces( mine is a big handful)  I love mint.
  • A handful of fresh coriander chopped.
  • A few Thai Basil leaves for the decoration.
  • I Lime.  use half to a whole lime juice depending on personal taste.
  • Dried chillies..dry roasted in a pan and grind in pestle and mortar.
  • 1 large tbsp toasted rice.( recipe below)
  • 1-2tbsp Fish Sauce.
  • A small amount of palm sugar….I use it sparingly.
  • Mint, whole dried chillies and sliced cucumber to garnish

Let’s Cook!

Using a small saucepan dry cook the mince, I add a small amount of water to stop it from sticking.

Stir until cooked, remove the pan from the heat.

Stir in toasted rice, sm amount palm sugar, chilli( as desired) start with 1 tsp and once all ingredients added ..taste and add more if required.

Stir in the mint and coriander, shallots and spring onions, stir well but carefully.

Add fish sauce and half of the lime juice.

Taste! if required add more chilli, fish sauce and or lime juice and Taste again as lime and chilli. Put in a serving dish.

Garnish with Mint leaves, dried chillies and cucumber slices as pictured here we would also add any other raw herbs that we had available or picked.

Traditionally here in the North of Thailand the duck livers will be fried and thinly sliced and added to the larb, As duck has a gamey taste then I think the livers are a nice addition.

NB: To make the dried rice mix, take a thick bottomed pan put it on a medium to low heat, cover bottom with uncooked sticky rice( if you don’t have) normal rice will do. Stir until rice turns a golden brown colour, tip into pestle and pound until powdery but slightly coarse.

N.B. Glutinous rice is gluten-free. The misleading name simply comes from the fact that glutinous rice gets glue-like and sticky when cooked. … It all comes down to starch content.

You can store the rice in a small container and it will keep for 6-8 weeks…

Kitchen Disasters…

If anyone was under any illusions that everything I cook comes out perfect then you are sadly wrong…I have kitchen disasters and generally, they are the worst kind like this one when I took my eyes of the mango chutney…I was writing and got carried away until I heard hubby…I mean he is downstairs so why he doesn’t smell it until it gets to that stage I haven’t a clue…

Burnt mango chutney

This batch was well and truly burnt as was the bottom of my saucepan…

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!

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

 

 

 

Fruity Fridays…On A Sunday! Watermelon.

Fruity Fridays Watermelon Collage

 

The Watermelon is very plentiful here at the moment and on a fresh fruit platter is very nice and refreshing. Fruit is generally always served after a meal here in Thailand and generally fruit in season a lovely end to a meal.

watermelon platter

At the moment it is very plentiful here but not only is it a lovely fruit but it is also packed full of goodness.

Originating in Africa watermelons are pretty much available world wide , prized not only for it water content in many countries it is also used medicinally and records show used as far back as the Egyptians.

Packed with vitamin C it is like the tomato packed with Lycopene which is a powerful antioxident.

It is also lovely either as a shake on its own or with other fruits.

I am really getting into this smoothie making and today I think is one of my favourite smoothies. I am learning to get the right amount and what I do is take the glass I am going to drink it from and fill the glass with my fruit that way I make just enough and if I am making more than one glass then I double up but it eliminates the guesswork.

Today’s smoothie was a mixture of fruit and vegetables.

Water melon shake

 

I used a large chunk of  Pineapple, Watermelon, yellow melon and dragon fruit. A slice of tomato, a slice of beetroot, a piece of carrot and a little ice.

Then into the liquidiser and a blitz for a minute and voila a lovely smoothie.

Now how often have you bought watermelon and thrown away the rind?? Hands up! I have or I did until I discovered a lovely recipe for Pickled Watermelon Rind.

Now I make a lot of pickles and this one thing I hadn’t thought of pickling… you live and learn, don’t you?

Ingredients:

  • 4lb of Watermelon
  • 1 chilli thinly sliced
  • 1-inch piece fresh ginger finely sliced or diced
  • 2 Star Anise
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 4 tsp salt I use fresh mineral salt dried here
  • 1 cup of rice vinegar
  • 1 cup of sugar

Let’s Cook!

Using a vegetable peeler remove the outer green rind and slice the watermelon into I inch slices. Cut away all but 1/4 inch of the flesh (it is) the white part we are pickling. The red flesh I keep for smoothies or ice cream or a nice salad with feta cheese.

Then cut the rind into 1-inch pieces.

Add the chilli, ginger, star anise, salt, pepper, rice vinegar and sugar plus ½ cup of water together in a pan, bring the mixture to a rolling boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar then turn down the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the watermelon rind and bring back to a rolling boil and then again reducing the heat to a simmer for 5 mins or until the rinds are just tender. Remove the pan from the heat, and leave the liquid to cool down. You may need to weigh the watermelon down with a plate or lid, as it needs to stay submerged in the liquid until cool.

Pickled watermelon rinds

Once cooled then transfer to a container with a well fitting lid and refrigerate for at least 12 hours before you eat…This will keep refrigerated for about 2/3 weeks if it lasts that long…lol

My daughter in law took some of this to her village and they loved it …I thought maybe it would be too vinegary for them but no although they did suggest that next time I made it add some tamarind which I think( as) I love Tamarind is a great idea.

Lastly, I have a lovely sorbet for you packed with goodness and made with watermelon and tomatoes…

Watermelon and Tomato Sorbet.

Watermelon and tomato sorbet

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups (1-inch) seeded ripe watermelon chunks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 cups freshly blitzed tomato pulp.
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • Coarse salt (optional)

Let’s Cook!

Combine first 3 ingredients in a large bowl; stir well. Let stand 30 minutes.

I used 3 cups of my tomato pulp…I always make my own fresh tomato pulp to use in curries and spag bol etc..I don’t buy tinned tomatoes…I freeze it in portions it keeps well in the freezer and I just take a portion out as required.

Process half of tomato juice and half of the watermelon mixture in a blender until smooth. Repeat with remaining tomato juice and watermelon. Stir in lemon juice. Pour mixture into freezer container of a 2 1/2-Qt. electric ice-cream maker, and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions. (Instructions and times will vary.) Or as I did and froze my metal container for 12 hours and strained mixture into the tin and returned to the freezer. Once ready serve as desired I sprinkled  each serving with coarse salt.,

It was then that my Kitchen Nightmare began!

Oh yes…I have had a week of all weeks I have had NO internet since Tuesday evening ( Thank you) Windows for your update…So Fruity Fridays is now A fruity Funday Post …No fun here just hysterical laughter…and it culminated with a Watermelon sorbet and guess who forget to add the lime juice??? Moi!

Take 2

Re-blitz the aforementioned sorbet in a blender which didn’t like it too frozen so if you could have seen the mess in my normally orderly kitchen…Watermelon everywhere as I tried to mash the watermelon sorbet with my potato masher…  my sorbet now has lime and some coconut milk to aid the re-blitzing…However…I think it tastes better…Smoother taste and takes the edge of the sweetness of the Watermelon.

So the motto is No one is perfick... Least of all this Culinary goddess…Lolzzzz

Normal service will continue very soon…

Have a lovely weekend and for all of you who have had a week like me…You have my sympathy xxxx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Down on the farm….

My turkey babies are not babies anymore….

 

He is just such a handsome boy, isn’t he? They love just love wandering about the farm and eating the greens and picking bits here and there….They are a joy to keep and have really lovely natures…..One got attacked by a dog a while ago but let himself be picked up and his leg cleaned so placidly he is lovely….The dog..banished we cannot have an animal which attacks the other animals…The turkey he is alive and well after his little skirmish and none the worse for wear thank goodness. Our chook who thinks he is a turkey is still living with the turkeys he doesn’t want to be with the chooks…

He even speaks like a turkey now…

The banana trees are bearing fruit how is this for a bunch of bananas…..

It is a shame they all ripen at once so if anyone has some nice green banana recipes please let me know…I have shared with the neighbours..even the tuk-tuk driver but know we will be having lots of smoothies and banana bread and chutney and Banana splits have been mentioned…lol

Watermelon

Watermelons are now to be found in abundance and if you need any recipes then Carol and Sally have a treat for you Health Benefits and recipes just in case you missed it!

Today I am busy pickling some more Watermelon Rinds which are a lovely thing…Try them you will be so pleased you did…

Harvesting the rice.

Rice feilds down farm

The early rice is now being harvested and I tell you such hard work and for 200B ( 6 US) DOLLARS a day such long hours  8-5 and back-breaking work.

The main rice harvest is not until November but some people plant a bit earlier and can also harvest it cheaper as in November as it is busy the rate goes up to 300 baht a day…. still a pittance for the work as if the farmers have not weeded the rice regularly then it is harder to harvest…Our rice is always weeded regularly which makes the harvest a little easier…

That’s all for Down on the farm for today I hope you enjoyed the updates and below are links to previous down on the farm posts in case you missed them.

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2017/08/17/down-on-the-farm-sesame-plantngaa/

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2017/04/16/down-on-the-farm-thai-potatoes/

 

Thank you for reading and if you loved anything you read please share as sharing is caring…xx

 

 

 

 

Smorgasbord Health – Cook From Scratch with Sally and Carol Taylor – Wonderful Watermelon.

Wonderful Watermelon is the topic of the Sally and Carol cook from scratch this week …Sally is giving you all the benefits healthwise to this lovely fruit and I follow with recipes which I hope you enjoy…

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to Sally and Carol Taylor Cook from Scratch.. Actually Carol Taylor does the cooking and I get to tell you about the health benefits of our featured foods. This week it is the turn of the Watermelon to get the Sally and Carol Treatment. We would eat regularly as watermelons were sold both on the side of the road and in supermarkets very inexpensively. We would eat, but I also used to blitz the flesh as a base for smoothies and also cocktails… it lasted longer with a touch of vodka!!  Without alcohol it is a refreshing and hydrating treat for the whole family.

naughty-mischievous-baby-boys-01It took me a while to get around the pips in watermelon and learn the knack of spitting them out delicately rather than shooting them at the dog by accident. Once you master this quite simple dexterity you will have access to not only…

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