Tag Archives: pumpkin and spinach soup

Fang-Tastic Recipes!… Halloween and Sweet Potatoes…

Halloween is drawing near and I am sure lots of you have decorated your homes already please send me some photos so I can share your marvelous or scary themes and decorations…We would all love to see them…

Or tell us your plans for a virtual Halloween or just a recipe…tried and tested a family favourite.

So don’t be shy share away and promote your blog on here…

Does China celebrate Halloween? 

There are several days and a whole entire month in China that are similar to Halloween. These are the Hungry Ghost Festival, the Qing Ming Festival, the last day of the seventh lunar month, and the Spring Festival. …

The UK celebrates Guy Fawkes …However not so widely celebrated by many although growing in popularity… the manufacturers are jumping on the commercial bandwagon.

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Did you know? The word “witch” comes from the Old English wicce, meaning “wise woman.” The plural for wicce is Wiccan. Wiccan were highly respected people at one time. According to popular belief, witches held one of their two main meetings, or sabbats, on Halloween night.

Owls are one of my favourite birds but in medieval Europe, owls were thought to be witches and if you heard an owl hoot then someone was about to die.

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Some Pumpkin facts…

Pumpkin flowers are edible and a pumpkin contains on average about 500 seeds which when roasted make a healthy and delicious snack… the flowers are so pretty and it looks like Mrs bee loves the pumpkin flowers as well…

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Even what I call the scraggy bits of the pumpkin which…hands up I have thrown in the bin…No longer… add it to your stock pot…waste not…want not…

Halloween Food…Pumpkin Soup or butter, Chilli con Carne and jacket potatoes are good for a chilly evening and easy to do but if you fancy a change I have some lovely recipes for  Sweet Potatoes.

I like something a little different… This recipe is a nice treat… A recipe that was given to me by a friend who used goat’s cheese… I use feta or ricotta if I can’t get goats cheese…

purple sweet potato

 

Sweet Potato with goat’s cheese, honey, and roasted grapes.

Ingredients:

• 4 sweet potatoes
• 2 cups of red seedless grapes
• 1 tsp of coconut or olive oil
• ¼ tsp salt and freshly ground pepper
• 4 ounces of goats cheese, feta/ricotta
• Cinnamon and nutmeg to taste
• 2 tbsp of honey plus additional to drizzle if required

Prick the sweet potatoes then wrap the sweet potatoes in foil and cook in the oven at 350F for about 35/45 mins until soft. Remove from the oven and leave to cool then take your cooled sweet potato and gently remove the flesh… the skins are not as hardy as a normal potato are they? So my advice is to leave some of the potato attached to the skin or you may struggle to fill them.

About halfway through cooking your sweet potatoes roast the grapes… put on a baking tray drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper then roast them for about 20 mins or until the skins just start to burst… Do check them as ovens vary and they can tend to burn…my oven runs hot so I have to be careful…

In a bowl mash the potato with 3 oz of the goat’s cheese, honey, a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg, to taste then put the potato back in the skins and crumble some more goats cheese on top …To serve: add the grapes and drizzle more honey if desired…

Enjoy!

Other sweet potato fillings:

How about a baked sweet potato filled with cooked black beans, corn, crispy bacon, sweet peppers topped with sour cream with some lime rind stirred through or sprinkled on the top and some chopped coriander.

Or the Thai way our sweet potatoes here are a bright purple we do get the orange but many are purple a really beautiful colour… Baked and topped with Thai Peanut sauce they are heavenly…

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup fresh dry roasted peanuts (unsalted)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 cloves garlic very finely chopped or minced
  • 1/2 tsp dark soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 to 2 tbsp. brown sugar (to taste)
  • 2 to 2 1/2 tbsp. fish sauce (for vegetarians: substitute 2 1/2 to 3 tbsp. regular soy sauce)
  • 1/2 tsp. tamarind paste (or 2 tbsp. lime juice)
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper (or 1/2 tsp Thai red chilli paste more or less to taste)
  • 1/3 cup coconut milk

Let’s Cook!

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend until the sauce is smooth. If you prefer a runnier peanut sauce, add a little more water or coconut milk.

Taste.... adding more fish sauce (or soy sauce) if not salty enough, or more red curry or cayenne if not spicy enough. If too salty, add a squeeze of fresh lime juice. If you’d prefer it sweeter, add a little more sugar.

This sauce tends to thicken as it sits–just add a little water or coconut milk to thin it out, as needed. Otherwise, it stores well if kept covered in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Add to your baked sweet potato and top with chopped red onion, green onions and coriander, and some crispy fried garlic…yummy if you love Thai flavours.

Enjoy!

Halloween Superstitions: 

I wonder if anyone still believes or carries out these traditions? What Halloween traditions have been passed down through your family???

  • If a person wears their clothes inside out and then walks backward on Halloween, they will see a witch at midnight.
  • Scottish girls believed they could see images of their future husband if they hung wet sheets in front of the fire on Halloween.
  • Girls who place the apple they bobbed for under their pillows are said to dream of their future love.

Some of these traditions seem a bit far-fetched to me I would imagine not very comfortable sleeping with an apple under your pillow…

But did you know that Agatha Christie’s Halloween Party Mystery Novel was about a girl who was drowned in the Apple bobbing tub ??

A Halloween quiz question for you…

Every Halloween, Charlie Brown helps his friend Linus wait for what character to appear?

Answers in comments, please …

Pumpkin was a cure for freckles? Another old wives tale methinks…

Koolkosherkitchen has answered my shoutout for recipes with a lovely Pumpkin and Spinach Soup served in the shell of the pumpkin..just the way I like it and with instructions for the Instant pot which on my wish list…

For the recipe please head over to Dolly’s say hello from me and enjoy this beautiful recipe…Pumpkin and Spinach Soup…Enjoy!  Thank you, Dolly xx

Time for a cocktail…

This weeks Halloween cocktail is by Martha Stewart ably assisted by Brendan Foster who measures spirits just the way I do…lol

I am just off to check out the poison Apple cocktails…Laters xxx

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Checked and very nice that cocktail was…That Brendan Foster has much to answer for…I followed his advice and nearly fell off my broomstick xxx

I hope you are enjoying these Fang-Tastic Halloween posts and please if you have any tried and tested Halloween recipes I will post them and credit you so please let me have them…xxx

That’s all for this week…see you next Tuesday for some more Halloween recipes and tales…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 that I cook with have 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 for reading I hope you all have a great week xxx