Monday, November 1, 2010

Toilet Rolls, Rolled Ribs, Mexico, Magic.

Toilet RollsI heard a snippet on the radio yesterday, in the States, very soon, they are going to be producing toilet rolls without the cardboard centre. There is a new way of rolling the paper which keeps the centre firm until such time as the roll is ended. This is an environmental improvement. I guess the next thing will be paper towels. I wonder, will all toilet rolls be tubeless or only some makes? In that case do you choose for the environment or for your preference in roll? A dilemma!

Saturday night we went to dinner at the home of some friends and were served rolled ribs which is a favourite of mine. For some unknown reason, I have never tried making them. One of these days I must have a go. Apparently that is going to be a problem, I have just hunted all over the place and cannot find a recipe although they are made in several places which originate in Germany. Basically they are baby ribs stuffed and rolled then baked, I think. But that is the limit of my present knowledge. I have asked for my friend’s recipe, but don’t know if she will share.

Yet another visitor, a Canadian businessman, has been found murdered in Mexico. Matt has been saying he would NOT go there on vacation no matter what, it certainly seems a heck of a lot of tourists have been murdered there. I suppose as a ratio to the amount of tourists that visit Mexico it is probably not a large proportion, but guess what, we don’t want to risk being one of the statistics, however small. It makes me think of the book I read the other day, Burning Water by Mercedes Lackey, where an Aztec god was trying to “come back” and his devotees were murdering people. This took place in the States although the devotees were mostly Mexicans and they were driven back to Mexico. Maybe they are still at it????

I am reading a very enjoyable book at the moment, Spellwright by Blake Charlton. It is his first book and well worth reading. Bearing in mind that as a child he was severely dyslexic I think its fascinating that he managed to write a book at all, let alone one I am enjoying so much. What fascinates me is all the magic systems authors think about. For instance Glenda Larke has a different magic system in each of her trilogies, Brandon Sanderson has at least two different magics that I know of, now this guy has another quite different magic. I don’t know how they think them up, but I guess that’s why I am not an author.

This recipe sounded absolutely delicious and suitable for all the parties which will be coming up in the near future, either for US Thanksgiving or for Christmas.

Baked Brie with Cranberries

Source: The Cranberry Cookbook

Serves 4


For the Baked Brie:Baked Brie

1/2 cup toasted fresh bread crumbs

1 tablespoon chopped parsley

1 teaspoon chopped thyme

1 tablespoon dried cranberries, finely chopped

4-by-2 ounce pieces of Brie

1 egg

For the Relish:

2 cups cranberries, defrosted, if frozen

3 tablespoons grated orange zest

1/3 cup orange juice

1/2 inch piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and grated

1/2 cup sugar

To serve:

Arugula or assorted lettuce leaves

4 thick slices French bread, toasted

1 garlic clove, cut in half lengthways snipped fresh chives


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Grease a baking sheet.

FOR THE RELISH: Place the cranberries together with the grated orange zest and juice, ginger, and sugar, in a blender or food processor and process to a coarse purée. Leave to stand for 1 hour before serving.

FOR THE BAKED BRIE: Mix the toasted bread crumbs with the parsley, thyme, and dried cranberries. Dip each piece of Brie into the beaten egg and then coat evenly with the bread crumb mixture.

Place the pieces of coated Brie on the baking sheet and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 8 minutes. Remove the Brie from the oven and leave to cool briefly.

Arrange the arugula or lettuce leaves on 4 plates. Spoon some cranberry relish on to the plates and place the warm Brie on slices of toasted French read, that have been rubbed with a garlic half and extra cranberry relish. Garnish with chives.


  1. Hi Jo,

    Thanks so much for the shout out about Spellwright! So glad it worked for you. If you're keen, I should have the sequel Spellbound coming out late this summer / early this fall! :)

    Take good care,


  2. So glad to hear that Blake. I really am enjoying the book, just got a few pages to read now. Thanks for commenting.

  3. YUM, with cranberries? sounds so good Jo. I'd love to see the rolled rib recipe when you get it.

    I'll have to check out Blake's books. I haven't heard of him until now.

  4. So far he has only published the one althought as he says, another is due out next year. I will look forward to it. Maybe you should choose him for one of your coffee klatches. I am sure he would have a different perspective.

    Marilyn Z. Tomlins might be another good interview, she has just published a true life crime story Die in Paris. Her link is on my blog.

  5. Jo, I'm copying out this recipe because it sounds a terrific starter.

  6. Baked Brie or Camembert are often served on this side of the pond. Very often inside puff pastry. Delicious. Cranberries are good for you too.