Tag Archives: Recipes

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Food Column – Carol Taylor – A – Z of Food ‘D’ for Dates, Dragon Fruit, Drupes, Durian and Dirty Rice.

Thanks to Sally for rerunning this series while I am concentrating on my writing…I have been so pleased with the comments for which I thank you…I love this series and love that many of you love it as well…Enjoy the letter D…

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to the series from Carol Taylor, the wonderful A – Z of Food and I am looking forward to expanding my knowledge of wonderful ingredients across the food groups, spices and herbs over the year.

Welcome today it’s the letter D …I have some exotic fruits for you and some lovely recipes I hope you enjoy!

Dates

I do have as pictured above a date palm in my garden but dates don’t fare well here they like hot, dry temperatures not hot and humid.

The dates that are on my tree are picked while young and unripe and we take them to Lily’s other grandmother who loves them…so they don’t go to waste as the village ladies like them unripe but unripe the texture in your mouth is like when you eat banana peel but a lot drier and sour and not something that I like to eat but…

View original post 2,512 more words

CarolCooks2…weekly roundup 16th -22nd February 2020…

Welcome it is a lovely sunny morning here…listening to the sound of drilling…Everyone around here is in D.I.Y mode methinks…I thought Sunday mornings were a quiet time so that one could reflect on the past week and what was planned for the coming week…Earplugs where are you???

I have wrapped up this week posts for you to enjoy…Green tea called for methinks…Let’s chill out with our favourite cuppa plus(earplugs) for moi….. Pam from Butterfly Sand shared her morning tea with us…A cup of Cream of Avalon which is a blend of caramel, vanilla bergamot and citrus sounds like one I would love to try…

Monday…Recycling and Climate Change…

I try to find as much good news and practises as I can…we cannot ignore the extremes of weather that some of you are experiencing some is of course nature which is always changing as the world goes through its cycles of life however we also cannot ignore man’s contribution and of course we must address those issues as much as we can as individuals…Every little helps as they say…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/02/17/recycling-and-climate-change17th-february-2020good-news-and-the-top-3-polluters/

Tuesday…

While I am busty researching and testing recipes I thought I would repost some of my older posts which still seem to be receiving some interest or ones which may need a little more love…Nam Pboon Sai is Slaked lime (lime + water = Ca(OH)2 ) or calcium hydroxide is traditionally made with burning shells at high heat and adding the burned shells to water. The water that you get is limewater. In  Thailand, the red lime paste is quite common because the paste is also used in making paan…To read the full post please click the link below…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/02/18/down-on-the-farm-what-is-lime-water-nam-pboon-sai/

Wednesday…Whimsical Wednesday…

Is one of my favourite posts to write…I start with something which has piqued my curiosity or a memory and go from there …which could be anywhere given how my brain is wired…it has a life of its own at times …even my dear my mum on reading one of my short stories said quite seriously I don’t know where this comes from…how do you think of these ideas…I still think she may think I was that child found under a gooseberry bush…haha.

whimsical rabbit-542554_640

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/02/19/whimsical-wednesday-with-carol-27/

Thursday…Shopping by Nutrient…

This is a great series from Sally clearly written, easy to follow and understand …No jargon…

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2020/02/20/smorgasbord-health-column-nutrients-the-body-needs-weekly-grocery-shopping-list-by-sally-cronin/

Friday…

Where I invite you to join me in my kitchen...Where I am baking far more than I normally do and also testing out new dishes…The store of frozen bananas is diminishing …today I will be baking yet another banana bread for Lily to take back to the village for her other Nannie..she loved the bread pudding I sent last time hopefully she will love my banana bread I may also send her a little bit of ginger cake for her to sample she does love a piece of cake…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/02/21/carolcooks2this-week-in-my-kitchencornbeef-hash-thai-crispy-pork-and-kale-and-chocolate-and-blueberry-cookies/

Saturday…A Saturday Morning Market…

Who doesn’t love a market..sadly in some parts of the Uk the markets have gone or declined there has been an increase in Farmers Markets which are lovely and you get some amazing local produce but a market to me…A proper market is where you can buy anything…food for table and tools to mend a leaky tap or a puncture or some new tea towels…

I adore the markets here…Lively and bustling and they sell everything from meat, fish fruit, vegetables, curry pastes, rice, clothing, garden pots and knives you name it it is sold here…On a Saturday I will share with you some goodies or new fruit or vegetable I have found…

This week it is the Kaffir Lime...A lovely vibrant green little fruit with lots of uses…A fruit that I knew very little or had used until I landed here in Thailand where it is used in many Thai dishes…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/02/22/saturday-morning-market-kaffir-limes/

Thank you for reading…I hope you have enjoyed this weekly roundup 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 are having a great weekend xx

 

CarolCooks2…This week in my kitchen…Cornbeef Hash, Thai Crispy Pork and Kale and Chocolate and blueberry Cookies…

Welcome to my kitchen...I have been baking more than I ever have for a long, long time…Come and join me…

This week in my Kitchen 21st Feb 2020

I have so many bananas in my freezer I need to use up before the next ones come along as looking at the tree they will be ripe very soon…I have updated my original version of banana cake…Why? I get bored and think of how I can change something it doesn’t always work but sometimes it is for the better… I prefer using oil for one dish cakes by that I mean cakes, where everything is mixed together and cooking fat is just not the same here and neither are the cakes…Many Thai cakes are fatless and rice flour is used so they are very, very light…Quite nice but I like a cake with a bit of substance to it…

What has been cooking in my kitchen then?

Corn Beef hash for one…I haven’t made corn beef hash for a few years…Earlier in the week, I visited a new shop on the hunt for some cheese…Proper cheddar can be difficult to find here and as is the case once again after Christmas and the New Year stocks of some goods take a few months to start coming in again…I wasn’t lucky on this occasion but the guy had come across some Brazillian corn beef and at a good price…Hence corn beef hash…

I do know that corned beef to the English is not the same as corned beef to my American cousins…What my American cousins call corned beef we call Salt Beef…It gets confusing at times, doesn’t it…sigh…but interesting as well…

Salt Beef …a sigh of pleasure as I remember how my mum served it with pease pudding and a lovely clear gravy…also known as pease porridge, is a savoury pudding dish made of boiled legumes, typically split yellow peas, with water, salt, and spices, and often cooked with a bacon or ham joint or Salt Beef…

Asa child it wasn’t my favourite although I got to like it as I grew older ..Does anyone remember the song Pease Pudding, hot, Pease Pudding, cold. Pease pudding in the pot 9 days old?

Back to Corn Beef Hash…

smart

  • I large onion chopped
  • 3/6 cloves of garlic we like lots of garlic
  • About a kilo of potatoes peeled and cubed
  • 1 1/2 tins Corned Beef.
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • Worchester Sauce (optional)

Parboil your potatoes until nearly cooked. In the meantime cook your onions and garlic until soft but not browned.

Heat your oil in a pan with a couple sprigs of rosemary(optional) Then drain and add your potatoes lightly crush then with a potato masher and cook as like roast potatoes turn halfway through cooking and about 15 mins before the end add your broken up corned beef and stir in gently…

If you are using eggs at this point you can make a small well in the mixture and crack your eggs in one per person into the wells made.

I didn’t add eggs this time as the family wanted cauliflower and broccoli in a cheese sauce.

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Once cooked add a shake or two of Worchester sauce over the top and serve either with crusty bread or a side of vegetables or salad.

Enjoy!

It seems everyone has a hankering for homemade cookies…These ones have blueberries and Chocolate in them…Oh and some oats…that’s the healthy bit or so I keep telling myself…lol

Carol’s Chocolate and Blueberry Cookies…

  • 1 cup of oats…I used rolled oats but quick oats are fine.
  • 3/4 cup of wholewheat flour…I did 1/2 cup wholewheat and 1/4 cup all-purpose
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts…the recipe said hemp seeds which I didn’t have…
  • 1 med banana mashed…I need to use these bananas
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil…mine is always liquid but if solid melt and cool
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence1/4 cup of honey or maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

Let’s Bake!

Makes 8 cookies.

Mix your dry ingredients together and then in a separate bowl mash the banana. Add the coconut oil, vanilla and honey to the banana and mix well to combine.

Add the banana mix to the dry ingredients I did mine in two batches stirring well to combine in between.

Gently add the blueberries, nuts and chocolate. Allow the mixture to sit for about 15 minutes.

In the meantime heat your oven to 180C /365F or gas mark 4.

Then spoon or roll the mix into balls place on the prepared baking sheet and flatten slightly with your hand. Leave about a 2′ space between the biscuits they didn’t spread that much.

smart

Bake for 12-15 minutes until the edges are slightly brown remove from the oven and cool down…my oven tends to run hot so 12 minutes was ample next time it will be 11 minutes. Biscuits always harden as they cool…

I prefered these to the chocolate ones I made last week they were not as dry…

The banana bread is still being tested you tell how hard I am trying to use all the bananas up…The first one I used nuts and the one I made a couple of days ago I added sultanas …This next one I am going to add lime zest and walnuts…Hopefully, I will get a picture before they dive in and eat it…I am also planning gingerbread which I love and haven’t had for ages.

Pancakes are also being tested as it is Pancake Day soon…To be precise it is Tuesday 25th…Lily is coming today for the weekend so I will make pancakes early… I am also planning to make some banana ones I am going to mash the bananas into the batter and see how they turn out…

Tonight we are having one of our family favourites crispy pork and Kale…

Kanaa Moo Krob ผักคะน้าหมูกรอบพิเศษ

This really is a lovely dish if you like crispy pork belly…

That’s all from me for this week I hope you have a fabulous weekend and if you are making pancakes and have some great recipes please share…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

Whimsical Wednesday…with Carol…

Good morning and welcome to Whimsical Wednesday…where I shamelessly indulge myself… I just go where my thoughts take me…It could be the distant past or the future…It could be serious or quirky…Over the centuries much has happened in the month of February …Here however I only concentrate on the happy events…it certainly is a real action-packed month of happenings… so far we have had Torville and Dean, the discovery of penicillin, Respect from Aretha, beautiful cakes… well it is cake month, the VW camper van so many lovely happenings…and there is much more to come…

Who remembers Dolly the sheep?… If you don’t…then Dolly was a female domestic sheep…She was the first recorded/reported mammal to be cloned from a specific adult animal. Why was there was so much excitement by the birth of Dolly? Prior cloning of mice, sheep, cows even a fish were cloned with DNA from embryos.

Though Dolly was born in July 1996, her existence was announced to the public on 22 February 1997. It instantly created a sensation with Dolly gaining much attention in the media. There was a special report on Dolly in the Time Magazine and Science magazine featured her as the breakthrough of the year. Since then Dolly has been widely called “the world’s most famous sheep”.

Dolly sadly died on February 14th 2003…Valentines Day…

Did you know though? Dolly is named after famous country singer Dolly Parton who is the composer of many well-known songs like “I Will Always Love You”, “Jolene” and “Coat of Many Colors”. The reason behind it in Wilmut’s words the scientist who cloned Dolly is that “Dolly is derived from a mammary gland cell and we couldn’t think of a more impressive pair of glands than Dolly Parton’s”.

Personally, I prefer this version of Jolene…Miley is the daughter of country singer Billy Ray Cyrus …Dolly Parton is also Miley’s godmother…

Time for a story…

The Charade…Chapter 23

By Steph Richmond.

Joseph went to the station himself to pick her up, his man was still out scouring the streets looking for her.  She was indeed still unconscious. He scooped her up in his arms and carried her to his car and carefully, so as not to disturb her, took her back to his house.

   Sometime later she began to wake up, she opened her eyes to find herself in her room. It must have been a dream, she thought something had happened to her but she must be wrong, she was still in her room, but she felt cold and was shivering. She could hear voices outside her room but not what they were saying. She staggered as she climbed from the bed, feeling a little light-headed. She knocked into the sideboard and a small vase tumbled to the floor and smashed. The door immediately opened and Joseph was beside her helping her back into bed. “You should stay there a while longer, you’ve had quite an ordeal” He smiled kindly at her.

   “What happened?”

   “Carl came looking for you, but you’re back now so just rest up .”

   “What was Carl doing here, in your house? I saw him in town too. What does he want from me?” The events of the day were coming back to her gradually. “Why was I outside sleeping?”

   “It appears he drugged you and left you at the station to be found, I don’t know what he’s up to but you can be sure I will find out.” His face told her that he really meant it too. “Now sleep a little longer, we can talk when you’re rested.”

   She let him go but knew there would be no more sleep for her today. If Carl had got into here once he may try again. In her mind, she kept thinking about George and was concerned for his safety, yet she didn’t know why she felt that way. Her hand strayed to her throat, her necklace had gone, after a moment’s panic, she realized that she had hidden it. Reaching below the mattress she felt around until finally feeling her finger come into contact with her precious jewel. She sighed and relaxed.

   Joseph left the house and went into town, he needed to find out where Carl was and find out what was going on, although he already had a good idea. He wanted to sort this before Robert arrived.

   Evening fell over York, she thought it was time she put in an appearance. Joseph had been so kind that she wanted to see him. She entered the drawing-room and was faced with Joseph and Mr James, chatting in front of the fire. They both turned towards her as she entered the room.

   “Hello, how are you feeling now?” Joseph asked. Mr James just smiled at her. She thought she had rarely seen him smile, it made him look quite handsome.

   “Hello.” She said unsure of what was going on. “I feel fine, thank you.”

   “Please join us, I think there are some things we should talk about.” Joseph ushered her towards the sofa. “I’m glad to see you’re wearing Elizabeth’s necklace too.”

   There it was the mention of her mother again. “Mr James, have you seen George?”

   “Please call me Robert, No I haven’t found your George, you should tell me about him.”

   “George… elderly, has a grandson who helps him in his shop?” Joseph chipped in.

   “Yes, that’s him… you know him?”

   “Yes, he was your Mother’s gardener. A lovely gentleman and a very good gardener, I hope he was a good shopkeeper too. How do you know him?”

   “I met him in his shop, I think Carl might have tried to intimidate him, my Mum had a gardener?” She sat down suddenly realizing that maybe her Mum was more important than she had ever thought. All of this attention, no protection.  Her head began to spin.

9a15bbcccf402180463cff95a6c0a40e-amethyst-jewelry-swarovski-jewelry

T.B.C

This week in music history…

Did you know?

On 18th February 1979, the Antiques Roadshow was first aired live on TV …My dads favourite Sunday night viewing …we all sat and watched and hoped we could find something valuable in our cupboards or lofts or lamented the fact that we had had some of the said magazines or toys and gave them away or never kept the boxes…

Who loves a G& T?…Who buys sustainable produce? Who cares for the environment?

Arbikie Highland Estate does...This Scottish Distillery has won many awards, made Vodka from potatoes and now has produced this gin using garden peas…It ticks all the boxes and this Gin is said not to taste of peas but to taste fruity and fresh…Served with ginger and a lime leaf it sounds the perfect tipple to me…

garden-pea-1355929_640

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/foodanddrink/foodnews/a-scottish-distillery-has-created-the-first-climate-positive-gin-out-of-garden-peas/

Japan the home of invention…

The Japanese love Kitkats so much so that you will see flavours of KitKats that you hadn’t dreamt of…The rest of the world just looks on and drools…

The Japanese have just taken the Kitto Katto aka KitKat to us…and made it more climate-friendly…they have replaced the packaging with origami packaging…

Next Tuesday 25th February is Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday or Shrove Tuesday, in other words, Pancake Day…I love my pancakes thin, a little crispy around the edges with lots of lemon and a touch of sugar…How do you like your pancakes? Feel free to share your recipes…

pancake with lemon and sugar

The most flips anyone has ever done with a pancake is 349 flips in two minutes. That’s ‘flipping’ good’!

banana maple syrup pancakes

For my simple pancake recipe or one with walnuts and maple syrup which is quite yummy then please click here…

Also on this day ...February 18, 1885, Mark Twain publishes his famous–and famously controversial–novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

mark-twain-391120_640

Image by skeeze from Pixabay

Twain (the pen name of Samuel Clemens) first introduced Huck Finn as the best friend of Tom Sawyer, the hero of his tremendously successful novel The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876). Though Twain saw Huck’s story as a kind of sequel to his earlier book, the new novel was far more serious, focusing on the institution of slavery and other aspects of life in the antebellum South.

The character of Huck Finn is based on Tom Blankenship, the real-life son of a sawmill labourer and sometime drunkard named Woodson Blankenship, who lived in a “ramshackle” house near the Mississippi River behind the house where the author grew up in Hannibal, Missouri.

A book that I have been meaning to read again as it is a favourite from my childhood…

That’s all for today …Thank you for joining me on my whimsical ramblings I do hope you have enjoyed this post…xxx

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

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

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

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 week xx

Down on the Farm…What is Lime water? Nam Pboon Sai…

Down on the Farm Nam Pboon Sai

While I am busty researching and testing recipes I thought I would repost some of my older posts which still seem to be receiving some interest or ones which may need a little more love…

I thought of this post as I purchased some more of the areca nut today and some fresh tobacco…The mother-law -law’s little store need replenishing…

I hope you enjoy!

 

Used in Thai cooking that firms up soft fruit for long cooking and makes crispy batter even crisper.

But you know me I couldn’t just leave it there…

When I wrote my post last week on Red Bananas I found out that all bananas that looked red were in fact NOT red bananas but bananas that had been cooked in Lime Water to turn them red… The plot thickens… I hope this doesn’t bore you but I just like to know I will say that when I was telling my son his eyes glazed over and he did say, mum, I really am not interested… But indulge me because I am…

Let’s start with the raw ingredients in making limewater (Nam Pboon Sai). Slaked lime (lime + water = Ca(OH)2 ) or calcium hydroxide is traditionally made with burning shells at high heat and adding the burned shells to water. The water that you get is limewater. In  Thailand, the red lime paste is quite common because the paste is also used in making paan.

What is paan?

The chewing of the product is part of the culture of Thailand. Cultivation of areca nut palm and betel leaves is common in rural areas and is a  traditional cash crop, and the utensils used for preparation are often treasured.

Now, many young people have given up the habit, especially in urban areas, but many, especially older people, still keep to the tradition.

These pictures show the fruit, the chewing tobacco, bits of wood and betel leaves and other bits and pieces which go into rolling up these cigarette shaped smokes.

Although actually illegal now a blind eye is turned in most cases it is generally the older people like my son’s partners mum who continue this tradition …You can tell as the teeth and lips are stained bright red…

Where does my red Lime powder fit in well it is sold here and apparently some of the powder is rubbed under the top gum of the mouth…I was warned( not) that I had any intention of doing that …To be careful it may burn!!!!!!!!

I was also getting a lot of surprised looks and smiles which translated I think meant what is this lady doing buying that… just as well I had Tik with me to translate that I wasn’t intending to smoke or rub it under my gums but cook…They still looked slightly bemused but I am used to that now.

Just in case you missed the post which led to this one here is the link:

Red Bananas (2)

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2018/07/27/fruity-friday-the-red-banana/

I just wanted to know and see what made this Banana dessert red…..

To make red lime, powdered turmeric is added to the mixture. Instead of turning yellow like turmeric, this pasty mixture turns bright red. Nam Pboon Sai or limewater is made when more water is added to the mixture. When the lime settles, the clear, pinkish water above is used in cooking.

Limewater is used in Thai cooking to keep fruit used in long cooking like a banana in syrup or breadfruit in syrup. The fruit is peeled and cut and let soak in the lime water.

The grandmother here stores her red lime paste in a jar filled with water. The heavier lime sinks to the bottom while the clear limewater floats above.  When she needs the limewater, it’s ready. She would pour the clear pinkish water out from the jar. She just tops up the limewater by adding more water to the jar. There is also no need to refrigerate limewater or lime paste.

Just a word of warning…

The powder I bought was available in red or white but apparently also comes as a red paste. If you get pickling lime from hardware stores, which often have canning materials available, make sure you get the food-grade quality. The lime building material may contain a metal such as lead.

This is where I began to get quite scared as I know that there are some who just mix whatever they have to sell with no regard for the consequences.

The bananas in this desert look bright and shiny and sweet but are not as sweet as they look… I have found a recipe and now need to find the right bananas…So that is for another day…

In the meantime on my travels looking for this red powder/paste, I also found… Some lovely squash…I hadn’t seen this variety before, Some large sweet radish which my plan was to pickle but hubby loves radish as it is raw and ate all except for the one pictured.

My red lime paste for my banana dessert and an assortment of foraged mushrooms from down on the farm which made a lovely soup for which I will have to get the recipe from my daughter in law. I have watched her make it and lots of herbs go into it with the mushrooms and it is very tasty… Don’t those whitish ones look just like flowers so pretty.

I hope you have enjoyed this little culture trip that gives you some insight into my life here…

Always interesting and I am always learning something new…If you have enjoyed it and I haven’t bored you then I am happy xxx

Thank you so much for reading this I hope you have a lovely week xxx

About Carol Taylor: 

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

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

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

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 are having a great week xx

 

 

Chocolate Cookies…

As it was Valentines Day I thought maybe I should make some cookies…Chocolate Cookies seemed like a good idea…I always use oil as often as I can unless I use butter as the cooking fats are not great here I haven’t found one I am happy with…

Recipe adapted from thefrugalsouth.com

smart

 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp coffee mixed with a little water
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup plus 6 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp good cocoa powder

Oven 375F / 180C

Lets Bake!

Mix the oil, coffee, sugars, egg and vanilla essence together until smooth.

In a separate bowl combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet mix I did this in batches. The original recipe said to chill for 15 minutes if required mine didn’t even in this heat although I had to cook in two batches as my oven only has one shelf and did chill the second batch while waiting to cook them.

Place cookies on ungreased baking sheet about 2 inches apart which is ample as they don’t spread like some cookie do…

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Bake 8-10 minutes depending on your oven mine took 8 minutes and that was ample…Be careful not to overbake as they will be hard..Cookies harden as they cool and I have done that before and trust me they are hard so use your timer.

The original; recipe said to roll the cookie dough in sugar before cooking I did half my batch which I also flattened a little before cooking.

The testers comments:

They prefered the first batch without sugar. I liked them but thought they were too dry my testers disagreed and said that they were cookies and they liked them.

I hope you enjoy!

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 are having a great weekend xx

 

Valentines Day… Is it roses all the way or Bah Humbug?

Valentines Day …Roses, hearts and flowers and maybe a cuddly toy…

It hasn’t always been like that…There are lots of tales surrounding Valentines Day but no definite actual this is really what happened…

The ancient Romans shall we start there?... The Romans celebrated the feast of Lupercalia between the 13th and 15th of February…Those Romans and their orgies are legendary the men sacrificed a dog and a goat and then whipped their woman with the hides from those poor animals. It seems the woman themselves were up for a beating and actually stood in line as they believed it would make them fertile…

It didn’t stop there as Emperor Claudius executed two men called Valentine on the 14th February on different years in the 3rd century A.D. The church then made martyrs of the two men…and honoured then with Valentines Day…A day of fertility and love…

Valentine’s day today is not quite so bloody it is more hearts and flowers.

Who still gets taken out on Valentine’s Day??

I never have as my husband has always said you are not my Valentine you are my wife…

Which again if you look at the original meanings he is right…Chalk that one up…I don’t often say that!

When the kids got older they used to nag him until he bought me something…haha…My first gift …A red devil complete with horns…and me so quiet, shy and retiring…haha

Fast forward to modern times and the marketing machine is running full pelt we are in Valentines Week…Yup…

Today is…February 11th…Promise Day…

The Promise day is celebrated for giving a true promise to your partners like you’ll love them and give the very best and satisfying life to partners. All lovers and couples can enjoy the Promise Day giving a true promise to your partner. This day can provide a true and healthy connection in your life.

https://visualhunt.com/re6/4b61dbd7

This so smacks of pure marketing..to which I say…Bah Humbug!

Let’s Eat!

 For everyone who is staying in either because of the weather or just because here are a few suggestions and recipes…

For starters,

if it is chilly where you live or because you love soup then a lovely bowl of tomato soup with heart-shaped croutons is just the thing.

Or do a lovely heart-shaped swirl with some soured cream which would look very pretty.

If you are seafood lovers then a lovely seafood platter is easy to do and looks quite spectacular.

seafood platter

 

Some smoked salmon, a few plump mussels, lovely grilled prawns, soft squid there is so much lovely seafood to choose from just a little of each arranged on a platter with maybe a nice drizzle of seafood sauce or a chilli sauce.

This quick little soy sauce is nice to drizzle …Finely cut a clove of garlic or two and a small piece of chopped fresh ginger, fry in a small pan , stirring to release the flavours add scant tbsp soy sauce and a half to one tbsp honey stirring and cook for 2 mins add a squeeze of lime..just taste and play with the flavours. Then drizzle as pictured…

Main course:

This chicken dish is one we make often and it is quick and easy and served with rice or potatoes and some lightly steamed vegetables it is very nice.

Lemon Chicken with caper sauce.

 

Ingredients:

• 4 Chicken Breasts (skinless)…Two if it is your special meal for two ♥
• 2/4 cloves garlic.
• 1 tbsp capers ( rinsed)
• 2 tbsp chopped parsley.
• Half lemon sliced.
• 1/4 cup lemon juice.
• 1/2 pint chicken stock.
• 5 tbsp Olive Oil.
• 2 tbsp Butter.
• Parsley for garnish.

Let’s Cook!

Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess flour.

In a large skillet over medium-high heat add 3 tbsp olive oil. When the oil starts to sizzle, add 2 pieces of chicken and cook for 3 minutes.

When the chicken is browned, flip and cook the other side for 3 minutes. Remove and transfer to plate. Add another 2 tablespoons olive oil. When oil starts to sizzle, add the other 2 pieces of chicken and brown both sides in the same manner. Remove pan from heat and add chicken to the plate, set to one side.

Into the pan add the lemon juice, stock, capers and garlic.

Return to stove and bring to boil, scraping up brown bits from the pan for extra flavour.

Check for seasoning and add lemon slices and parsley.

Return all the chicken to the pan and simmer for 5/10 minutes depending on the size of breasts. Remove chicken to a platter.

Add 2 tablespoons butter to sauce and whisk vigorously. Pour sauce over chicken and garnish with parsley.

Serve with boiled rice or potatoes of your choice and steamed broccoli and cauliflower.

Seriously if it is for two just adjust the sauce ingredients slightly and taste…Enjoy!

Valentines Dessert

This is where I am normally too full for anything else but if you fancy a dessert…Then chocolate covered strawberries are very nice…Or just a bowl of fresh strawberries like these ones I picked up at my local market…

fresh strawberriesSimple and delicious as they are or if you have a fondue set then go for it and dip them in chocolate at the table…

 

Or a lovely strawberry mimosa…Just blend 2 cups of strawberries with half a cup of orange juice and then strain through a sieve. Chill.

Pop a strawberry in the bottom of a champagne flute, half fill with the strained strawberries and carefully top up with your favourite champers…Garnish with a fresh strawberry and there you have it… Strawberry Mimosa…

Or using the same strawberry puree to make a lovely Daiquiri… I think will go down very nicely…My preference is a strawberry Mojito…

strawberry mojito

 

Happy Valentine’s Day…

What will you be cooking or does your other half cook???

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 is a definite shift towards 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 great week xx