Newsletter #28 - November 2004
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Happy Cooking !
Florence Sandeman, Editor
What's the definition of... An Oven?
"A compact home incinerator used for disposing of bulky pieces of meat and poultry " (But hopefully not if you use this site!)
Don't forget - our new Cookery book or one of our Spice Packs would make a great Christmas Gift. Order early - one less thing to think about !
This Book May contain Nuts is more than just a cookbook. As well as the 80 recipes (from carnivore to vegetarian, starters to desserts, simple to elegant, featuring many traditional dishes from global cuisines) it's gastronomically and educationally informative, A real gem of a cookery book worthy of adding to any collection. To read a review about it click HERE.
ISBN 095483240X Also available from Amazon.co.uk
Each themed pack comes with a selection of individual "serves 4" Cuisine Select herb/spice packs plus LAMINATED A5 recipe cards punched with two-holes so you can use them, abuse them, wipe them clean, file them and use them again and again and again.
Our current themes are African, Asian, Cajun/Caribbean, European, Oriental and Globetrotting. To read more about them click HERE
Click HERE to order any of these items Online or Mail Order
It's getting chilly
....at least over here in good old England. When it's cold and miserably outside, what better way to get a warming glow than with a steaming bowl of homemade soup.
Soup has been an integral part of peoples diet the world over ever since we discovered cooking over a fire. When you think about it, it's the easiest way of cooking all manner of foods in such a way as to preserve most of their nutritional values.
Traditionally, soup was always served as the main and sometimes the only meal of the day. Although the word soup derives from sup (drink) it is also the origin of supper.
It was only in the 18th century that soups started to be considered as a first course rather than a meal in itself.
Today as with days gone by, soup provides a good way to use whatever you have to hand, particularly useful when there's a glut of seasonal ingredients.
So, to extol the virtues of of making your own soup from scratch (or as scratch as you wish):-
1. They can be as light or as filling as you want: suitable as a starter, light lunch or a hearty main course.
2. Most can be made in advance and reheated and even frozen and with the advent of the microwave that means you can have a nutritious tasty homemade soup within minutes, especially if you freeze it in individual portion sizes. Oh, a word of warning. In general, soups such as bisques and chowders which contain cream don't freeze that well.....so eat/ drink them fresh.
3. Many are very simple to prepare and quick to cook and can be made without having any specialised equipment. A blender is handy but not essential.
4. You can use just about anything to make soup. They can be raging carnivore to the most vegan of vegan, made with raw ingredients or previously cooked ingredients, cheap or less perfect ingredients or
more exotic ingredients such as artichokes or lobster.
5. They can be as simple or as fancy as you want.
6. Purely on a personal note, I can eat/drink soup whilst watching the TV without fear of dropping any on my lap....or the coffee table....or the floor.
There are over 140 soup recipes on the site, so there's bound to be something to tempt you. Browse through the whole list (divided into vegetarian and non vegetarian or use the search form if you have specific ingredients to hand. Here's a couple of unusual to get your taste buds going
What's New This month
I'm cheating a little this month as both the Country and Ingredient of the month were posted on the site back in April 2002 and December 2001 respectively. However, even if you've visited these pages before, do re-visit as they have both been updated with extra recipes....including desserts in the Thailand section which weren't featured on the page before.
Cooking by Country
Click the picture to find out about Thai culinary culture and history plus lots of recipe
Whilst Thai cooking has evolved due to cultural influences from other countries, it has still retained its unique qualities of combining hot, sour, sweet and salty flavours, which makes it an altogether tempting and exciting culinary experience to most westerners.
The Thai Speciality Dish Nam Prik
The Thai Speciality Ingredient Lemon Grass
Ingredient of the month
Click the picture to find out all about Chestnuts plus lots of recipes
As you will soon be seeing fresh chestnuts in your greengrocers and supermarkets (if they are not there already) I thought I'd resurrect this page to bring to your attention all the superb dishes you can use them in.
There are also basic for roasting, boiling etc., if, like me, you just like eating them in their natural state. Personally, this is one ingredient which brings back happy childhood memories for me....I just wish I could buy them fresh all the year round!
Fruit and Vegetables in Season
Apples, Artichokes, Beetroot, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chestnuts, Courgettes, Figs, Leeks, Onions, parsnips, Pears, Potatoes, Pumpkin, Perpetual Spinach, Squash, Turnips, Vegetable Marrow, Walnuts, Watercress
Celebrate St. Andrew's Day (patron saint of Scotland) on 30th November. Click the flag to find out more about St. Andrew and for some traditional Scottish recipes.
Recipe of the Month
Citrus Baked Beetroot
This is a different way of serving beetroot... as a hot vegetable accompaniment. Excellent with game such as pheasant or grouse.
Serves 4 30 Minutes
4 small/medium Raw Beetroots
1 tbsp freshly chopped Oregano
1 fat Garlic Clove, cut into slivers
The grated rind and juice of 1 Orange
Salt and Black Pepper
Greek Yoghurt to serve
1. Preheat the oven to 180C, 350 F, Gas mark 4 and well grease 4 large squares of aluminium foil.
2. Wash the beetroots but do not trim, dry with kitchen paper and place them on greased foil.
3. Sprinkle over the oregano, garlic, orange juice, rind, salt and pepper then wrap quite tightly making sure the parcels and well sealed.
4. Place in a baking tin and bake for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until tender. You can tell when the beetroots are cooked as the skin will slide off easily.
5. To serve - unwrap the parcels and place a dollop of yoghurt on each beetroot. Serve warm.
Whether you're looking for everyday, exotic or unusual food and drink, visit
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