Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Out of Stock. Medical,

I am NOT a happy camper. I finally got permission from the lab to order my cannabis and, guess what, they are out of the product prescribed for me until, hopefully, the middle of August. There are other labs around but I don't know if I can switch or anything, probably not. I am really teed off although from what he said, that meant there were people in worst case than me.  Yes, well.

I told you all about Matt's pill strength and the argument I was having with the family doctor regarding the strength he had been taking and the strength which is apparently recommended. We ended up at the Cardiologist's clinic today and Matt was punched, pricked and prodded. He did a treadmill much better than I thought he could manage. He has to go see the cardiologist next Wednesday for his opinion, etc. Meanwhile they are sending him for a glucose test which takes 2 hours!!! Just to sort out the correct strength of a pill which he has been taking for at least two years!!!! We were going along quite happily until a week or so ago.

I spent a fair amount of time in Greece but don't remember Pastitsio. However, it is reputed to be a widespread dish and I do like the sound of it. Also, I have some ground lamb to use up. Looks a  bit like Moussaka with which I am familiar.


For the meat sauce:
4 Tbs (60 ml) butter
2 medium onions, chopped
1 lb (450 g) ground beef
1 lb (450 g) ground lamb
2 cups (500 ml) tomato sauce
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup (60 ml) chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp (2 ml) dried oregano
1/2 tsp (2 ml) cinnamon
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

For the bechamel sauce:
4 Tbs (60 ml) butter
1/4 cup (60 ml) all-purpose flour
3 cups (750 ml) milk
6 eggs, thoroughly beaten
A grating of fresh nutmeg
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1 lb (450 g) bucatini or elbow macaroni
1 cup (250 ml) freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1. To make the meat sauce, heat the butter in a skillet over moderate heat and saute the onion until tender but not  brown, about 5 minutes. Add the beef and lamb and saute until browned. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer. Cook covered over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, to make the bechamel sauce, heat the butter in a saucepan over moderate heat. Stir in the flour and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the milk and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and stir some of the milk for 3 minutes. Stir in the milk and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and stir some of the milk mixture into the beaten eggs. Stir the egg mixture into the milk mixture and season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper.

3. Cook the pasta in salted water until slightly under-done, about 8 minutes. Drain and place half the cooked pasta in a greased 3-quart (3 L) baking dish. Sprinkle with half the cheese and spread all of the meat sauce over the top. Add the remaining pasta, all of the bechamel sauce, and the remaining cheese. Bake in a preheated 350F (180C) oven until the top is browned and bubbling, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes before cutting into serving portions

Servings: 8

Source: WW Recipes

Have a great day

Cannabis, Cornish Pasties, Toaster,

Monday morning I went to the Marijuana company and had an interview, over the internet, with an extremely nice doctor. He figures the pain in my legs is due to my back problems? He was quite positive. I wonder why no-one else figured that? Anyway I then came home and had to register with an actual supplier. It will, apparently, be around 5 business days before I can hope to receive any.

On the way home I stopped at the Rising Dough to buy some Cornish Pasties and some scones. I recently heard a story, on TV about Cornish Pasties. Apparently they were first made this way for the tin and copper miners in Cornwall who didn't have time to come back up the mine to have lunch and they used to take these "complete meals" with them and because their hands were dirty and full of copper or tin they would hold the pasty by the crimped pastry, eat the rest and throw away the crust. By that time the  crust was somewhat poisonous and the rats would eat the crusts and die. In the bakery today they told me that the pasties originally were made with apple pie filling too, in other words there were 3 sections in the one pie, meat, veg, pie.

Whoopee my toaster oven has arrived. I had forgotten they said they would be sending one with a rotisserie too. Unlikely I will ever use it mind you.  It toasts something like 9 slices of bread. Can't see me needing that either. I find the rotisserie chickens from the store are excellent although no doubt it is not the cheapest way to buy them. I guess I might do it just for the hell of it, once, then again I might not - clean up comes to mind. Still I can now do myself a cheese on toast, which I didn't want to try in the air fryer.

Corn is coming into season in Ontario at the moment so this is an appropriate recipe if you want to use fresh ingredients. Of course fresh shrimp from the sea would be nice but beggars can't be choosers.

Brined Shrimp with Charred Corn Salad

Seared shrimp with a quick spice rub pairs with pan-charred summer vegetables in this simple dish
that pops with fresh flavor. A little white wine vinegar balances the sweetness of the caramelized veggies and also complements the shrimp.

1 Tbs kosher salt
1 quart water
1 lb large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 cups fresh yellow corn kernels (from about 4 ears)
1 cup thinly sliced baby red bell pepper rings
1 cup vertically sliced red onion
2 Tbs chopped fresh chives
2 Tbs white wine vinegar
1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp chili powder

1. Combine salt and 1 quart water in a medium bowl, stirring until the salt dissolves. Add shrimp to brine; cover bowl with plastic wrap. Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

2. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Add corn, bell pepper, and onion; cook 5 minutes or until vegetables are lightly charred and tender. Place corn mixture in a large bowl. Stir in chives, vinegar, and oil.

3. Wipe skillet clean; return to medium-high. Remove shrimp from brine; pat dry between paper towels. Sprinkle shrimp with chili powder. Add shrimp to pan; cook 1 minute on each side or until done. Serve shrimp with salad.

Servings: 4

Source: Cooking Light

Have a great day

Monday, July 30, 2018

Tigers, Pork,

Did you know that Sunday the 29th was Global Tiger Day? There are about 3,000 tigers left in the wild and they are very important to the environment. In one instance they keep down the deer populations so  that the deer do not denude the forests of plants and trees which they are eating. Another interesting fact I learned this weekend. Tiger pee smells like hot buttered popcorn!!! Whoever came up with that piece of information? World Wildlife Fund are working to preserve tigers and to increase their numbers. If you can help, please do.

Saturday dinner I decided to do a pork loin dish which I have done before, Apricot Glazed Bacon
Wrapped Cajun Pork Tenderloin - one of Kevin Lynch's recipes (Closet Cooking) I have done it a couple of times before and it is fairly easy and fairly quick but quite delicious. I was making up my online grocery order and discovered that I can buy two pork tenderloins for less than the price of two pork chops. Needless to say I went for the tenderloins. Not sure why chops are so expensive by comparison. They also have the frozen, peeled shrimp I like at $4 off again. I counted the ones I got the other day, there were 34 large shrimp in the bag for $6.99 and I didn't even have to peel them. No, they are not pre-cooked.

I love raspberries, be interesting to try this combination.

Grilled Salmon Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette

Homemade raspberry dressing? You bet. Prep it a day ahead and this easy salmon salad will come together in no time.

2 cups fresh raspberries
3 Tbs red-wine vinegar
1 Tbs sugar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
½ tsp lemon zest, plus more for garnish
¼ teaspoon salt
1/3 tsp ground pepper

4 4- to 5-oz skinless center-cut salmon fillets, 1 inch thick, thawed if frozen
Cooking spray
¼ tsp salt
1/3 tsp ground pepper
6 cups lightly packed fresh baby spinach (4 oz.)
2 cups fresh raspberries
½ cup crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese (2 oz.)
¼ cup chopped toasted walnuts

1. To prepare vinaigrette: Combine 2 cups raspberries, vinegar, sugar and mustard in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until the berries have broken down and the mixture is slightly thick, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool slightly. Press the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve set over a bowl; discard seeds. Stir in lemon zest, ¼ tsp. salt and ? tsp. pepper. Let cool completely. If desired, thin with a little water. To prepare salad: Preheat grill to medium. Oil the grill rack. Pat salmon dry, lightly coat with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill the salmon, covered, turning once, until it flakes easily, 7 to 10 minutes. Combine spinach and half the vinaigrette in a large bowl; toss to coat. Divide among 4 plates. Top with the salmon, raspberries, feta and walnuts. Drizzle with the remaining dressing. Garnish with lemon zest, if desired.

Sugar Substitute: We do not recommend a sugar sub for this recipe.

Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

Have a great day

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Cave Men, Spicy Food,

There was a segment on GMA this morning talking about some people who have adopted a diet eating nothing but meat. They say it was good for the cave men and they are really healthy on it. However, as the TV doc, Jennifer Ashton, pointed out, cave men also ate berries. The women also used to forage for edible greens, roots and shoots.

Just read an article that says the only other mammal that eats hot, spicy peppers is the tree shrew and even then they are not sure the shrew does it for the capsaicin or just for the nutrition they can obtain. Apparently if you want to keep squirrels away from bird feeders, sprinkle the feed with hot pepper - the birds won't notice it but the squirrels hate it. Since writing this I have come across another article about the tree shrew and its liking for spicy. It has an extremely high tolerance for such foods apparently. They don't think it eats such foods for the spiciness though. Unlike the human mammal.

For our Friday night supper I did the Thai Pineapple Shrimp Curry which I posted on July 19. We both enjoyed it very much. I can highly recommend it. The recipe doesn't call for it, but I served it over rice. 

I am too lazy/tired to hunt for a recipe tonight, so I will leave you with this recommendation.

Have a great weekend

Friday, July 27, 2018

Toaster Oven, Dosage, Bowling,

Grrr. Unbelievable. I just phoned about my toaster oven. The one I had is obsolete so they had called for another, turns out that too is obsolete and nobody had bothered to inform anyone else, so the order for my replacement was just hanging out there!!!! I have agreed to accept a slightly smaller unit. So I am supposed to get an email next week with the tracking number.

Now I am having a problem with some pills Matt has been on for blood thinning for about 3 years or so. The doctor has suddenly reduced the dosage. Sorry, no, these were originally prescribed by the cardiologist because Matt is prone to TIAs or mini strokes. Why she never said anything about it when I was in her surgery getting the refills I can't imagine.

Went bowling this afternoon. Disaster. I am blaming the pain in my legs. Yesterday I bowled an average of 157 over three games, today the highest I got was 121 and that was a struggle. I told the son running the alley that I would probably not bother to bowl on Thursdays until I got this marijuana I am going on about. At least during league play, there are 4 of us on the team and one gets a bit of a break each time.

This was not the first Beet Salsa I found, but the website would not let me copy without registering, I proceeded to do so and guess what, they wanted a Zip Code and would not take a Postal Code. Got news for you, there are countries outside the US.

Roasted Beet Salsa

4 medium beets
4 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
2 tsp shallots, finely diced
2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp jalapeno, finely diced
1/2 tsp garlic clove minced
1/4 cup fresh mint, minced
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, minced
2 tsp lime juice

1. To roast beets:

2. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

3. Trim the tops off the beets and drizzle with the olive oil. Season the beets with salt and pepper, wrap them in aluminum foil individually and roast until tender, about 40-60 minutes(depending on how large they are). When cool enough to handle, peel the beets.

4. While the beets are roasting, place the shallot, jalapeno, ginger, garlic, mint, cilantro, lime juice and 6 tablespoons of olive oil in a small bowl and stir to combine.

5. When the beets are done, carefully remove the foil. Let cool, and then peel the beets by slipping the skins off with your fingers. Dice the beets and add salsa mixture, stirring to combine. Taste for seasoning.

6. Great served with fish or eaten alone as a salad! Another suggestion is to eat it with Goat Cheese and Crackers or to use it as a topping for Brie baked in phyllo.

Servings: 4

Source: Genius Kitchen

Have a great day

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Bowling, Medical Marijuana, Rip Tides,

We did go bowling today and I am delighted to report that I bowled well and maintained my average. I was rather surprised as I wasn't feeling 100%.  Not only that our team took all 7 points too. We were in 2nd place when we started, won't know until Thursday where we stand now.

Was talking to a team member who's wife is on medical marijuana. By the sound of it, I won't get any on Monday when I go, I have to have it mailed to me? Seems somewhat odd. So it could take yet another week before I get it.

Just heard a headline about someone drowning in a rip tide at Emerald Isle, NC.  That was almost our back yard when we lived in NC. They had formed human chains pulling people out of the rip currents. I remember being caught in a rip current myself once, on the island of Malta. Very frightening. I learned then that one should always try and swim across and not against. But I didn't know at the time and was very lucky a chain managed to save both me and my friend. Neither my husband of the time nor my friend's wife could swim anyway and it took them a bit to realise we were in trouble.

I have had a bit of a craving for ice cream lately and I have, in the past, made ice cream with frozen bananas, but this sounds a pretty good version.

Dairy-Free Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Ice cream equals summer. But for those that can’t enjoy dairy versions, there’s an extremely healthy solution to satisfy your ice cream cravings.
This vegan peanut butter chocolate chip ice cream uses frozen bananas as its base, creating the smooth and creamy texture of regular ice cream, just without the cream (and calories!). You’ll think
you’ve died and gone to heaven after you try this.

Ingredients (1 serving):
2 sliced and frozen bananas
2 Tbs natural peanut butter
3 Tbs raw cacao nibs
pinch sea salt
Drizzle of agave (or maple syrup), optional

1. Place frozen banana slices in a food processor and run the machine until it resembles a crumb like consistency.

2. Add peanut butter, cacao nibs, sea salt and agave, and whiz a little longer until you get a soft-serve ice cream consistency.

3. Tip: You can add many other things to this frozen banana ice cream base. Try candied nuts, almond butter or another favourite nut butter, cinnamon, frozen blueberries, chopped dates, candied ginger… The options are endless.

Author: Lauren Toyota and John Diemer

Have a great day

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Toaster Oven, Bowling, Weather,

Having originally purchased a Black and Decker Toaster oven which went kaput. I ended up in touch with Spectrum Appliances in Ohio who promised to replace my toaster oven. On July 2 they said they would email me when they had dispatched the appliance. I have emailed them once since this time, but at present, nothing appears to have happened and they still say they will email me when they have sent the replacement. I am getting a tad fed up with this. I'm thinking I should start doing some phoning instead of emailing.

Wednesday is bowling league day and as we have missed bowling for two weeks running, we are both looking forward to going. Just keeping my fingers crossed that nothing will prevent us this time.

Having heard so much about flash flooding in North Carolina lately, I have been enquiring of my friends if  they are doing OK. Seems as though they are. Things seem to be pretty bad everywhere, I hear from Viveka that Sweden is "on fire" and that there is such a drought that farmers are unable to feed their cattle and having to slaughter them because of it. And yet, people maintain global warming isn't happening!!!

It seems I have posted this recipe before but I still haven't got round to try it. For some unknown reason I have never cooked Cornish Hens. Odd really, because I enjoy them. The first time I ever had them they were made as a birthday surprise dinner for me by a really good friend in North Carolina - he is no longer with us unfortunately. I never knew exactly how he cooked them which is a pity because they were really delicious and I know he used a bread and milk stuffing, but that is all. This recipe says it is for four but every time I have eaten Cornish Hens I have been served a whole bird. I suppose it depends on the size of  the hen.

Herb-Roasted Cornish Hens with Root Vegetables

2 1- to 1-1/2- pounds Cornish game hens
4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch lengths
4 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 2-inch lengths
2 small turnips, peeled and cut into wedges
1 medium onion, cut into wedges
3 Tbs olive oil or cooking oil
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
2 tsp dried oregano, crushed
1/2 tsp salt

1. Skewer neck skin of hens to back; tie legs to tail. Twist wings under back. Place hens, breast up, on a rack in a large shallow roasting pan. Place carrots, parsnips, turnips, and onions around hens in pan. Combine oil, garlic, rosemary, oregano, and salt; brush onto hens and vegetables.

2. Roast, uncovered, in a 375° F oven for 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours or until hens are no longer pink and the drumsticks move easily in their sockets.(Internal temperature should be 180° F with an instant-read thermometer.) During roasting, turn vegetables occasionally. Transfer hens from roasting pan to serving platter. Cover and keep warm. Remove rack from roasting pan. Stir vegetables. Increase oven temperature to 450° F. Continue roasting vegetables for 15 to 20 minutes more or until tender and browned.

3. To serve, using a slotted spoon, spoon vegetables around hens on platter.  .

Servings: 4

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Have a great day

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

My Pickles, Driving Tests, Online Groceries

Because I wanted to find out what they were like, I opened a jar of my pickled asparagus. It has worked very well and they were good. However, having finished one jar, I didn't want to waste all that lovely pickling liquid so I sliced up some bell pepper and some cucumber, and am working my way through it with pleasure. Matt has never been a 'pickle' person. It also occurs to me, several people have recommended pickle juice for cramps too so worth keeping.

Because I am 80 in September I have to have a special driver's test, written and lecture. Waste of time in my opinion. Doesn't tell them whether I can actually handle a car safely!!  My test comes 10 days before my birthday when my license runs out. Monday I received a temporary license which expires on my birthday!!! Somebody isn't paying attention.

Tuesday I pick up our groceries but much as I like this system, they seem to be having a lot of trouble with their web site. I do hope they get it fixed. Not insurmountable problems but a pain in the butt.

These are the two fairly easy recipes I made on Saturday night. I reduced the quantities in both cases and it turned out very well.

Steak a la Moutarde

Mustard is not just for hot dogs anymore. This steak is fast and easy to prepare and would go well
with most any side dish. Once the mustard has been added, do not allow to boil or the sauce will become unpleasant.

24 oz sirloin steaks (I used fillets)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbs vegetable oil
2 Tbs butter
2 Tbs shallots, finely chopped
1/4 Cup cognac
1/2 Cup   heavy cream
1 Tbs Dijon mustard

1. Season steaks on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large heavy skillet over high heat until almost smoking. Add steaks and cook 4 to 5 minutes and turn. Continue cooking another 4 or 5 minutes.until desired doneness. Remove steaks to a platter and keep warm.

2. Pour off fat from skillet. Add butter, then shallots. Add cognac and carefully ignite it. Add cream and bring to a boil, cook while stirring about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the mustard. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve over steaks.

Servings: 4

Source: Food.com

I accompanied it with

Fried Cabbage and Egg Noodles

Recipe by: judi "This is a German recipe from my Grandmother. It's cabbage that is lightly browned
in butter and mixed with egg noodles and browned lightly for a wonderful, hearty, and fast dish."

1 (16 ounce) package egg noodles
1 stick butter
1 medium head green cabbage, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook the egg noodles in the boiling water until the pasta is tender yet firm to the bite, about 5 minutes. Drain.

2. While the noodles cook, melt the butter in a large skillet over low heat. Add the cabbage to the melted butter; season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook until the cabbage begins to brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir the drained noodles into the cabbage; cook and stir until the noodles begin to brown, about 5 minute

Servings: 4

Author: judi

Have a great day

Friday, July 20, 2018

Trivia, Health, Saturday Dinner,

Now here's something I would never thought of or that hadn't occurred to me Fish eggs can stick to the feathers and legs of aquatic birds, which is one way that previously fish-free natural or man-made ponds and lakes can become stocked with fish got this from How to Geek this morning.

I decided this morning that it has taken 80 years for them to get me to have a colonoscopy and it will be another 80 before I have another. The colonoscopy itself wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, but my insides haven't felt "good" for a week now. Just about back to normal today. Can you believe I haven't really enjoyed chocolate in all this time!! Now if I could just get my legs right, life would be great. We haven't bowled for 2 weeks either but I think, come hell or high water, we will be going this week.

Saturday night I was looking for something easy to do with steak and made Steak a la Moutarde and Fried Cabbage with Egg Noodles. I will post the recipes later this week. Not too much work but quite enough thank you. One thing I/we do not want to do is rely on Meals on Wheels. I may be totally wrong but suspect we personally would not enjoy their food. Sunday night we had Kung Pao Chicken which is a favourite and in fact my recipe is enough for us to have for two nights.

Right I now have to go add some things to my online shopping list.

I discovered Aioli many, many years ago in France, but this is a different version which I thought sounded good.

Aji Verde Aioli (Jalapeno Avocado Mayo)

1/2 cup Canola Mayonnaise
1 Avocado raw
2 cups Cilantro fresh chopped
2 peppers - Jalapeno, deseeded and roughly chopped
1 lime juiced
1 clove garlic minced
1 Tbs Canola oil
4 Tbs water
1/4 tsp coarse Kosher Salt

1. Combine avocado, cilantro, peppers and garlic  in a food processor. Pulse for 10-15 second bursts, scraping down sides, until you have a paste. Add Mayonnaise, lime and oil. Pulse for 20 seconds until creamy and well mixed - Cilantro and jalapeno should now look like small flakes. Aioli will be thick add 1 tbs water - pulse and check for consistency you want.

 Source: Fruit and Veggies - More Matters.

Author Notes
Thick aioli is good for sandwiches and spreads

Thin is good for salads, veg and a sauce

Have a great day


Thursday, July 19, 2018

Useful Tip

I came across this the other day. When cooking ground meat, i.e. beef or chicken, the instruction is usually to make sure the meat is cooked through and broken up. Always something of a pain. The tip is to use your potato masher whilst frying the meat in order to help break it up.

Unfortunately the last 24 hours haven't been good for me. Didn't sleep well because of nausea then when I got up spent most of the morning asleep. I didn't realise before that it is possible to suffer after effects from a Colonoscopy. My stomach area, particularly at the top, feels as though someone has been beating me. Inside of course. We didn't go bowling, I just wasn't up to it. Will try again tomorrow perhaps. Must admit I have been asleep most of the day. I called the office of the gastroenterologist and never got a reply!!! I have never heard anyone complain of after effects before but did some googling and it is not unknown.

This is the dish I hope to prepare on Friday, I have all the ingredients. I thought I had posted this before, but seems I was wrong.

Thai Pineapple Shrimp Curry

Green curry paste is the base of the flavorful sauce—look for it in the Asian foods aisle of your

3 Tbs canola oil, divided
2 Tbs green curry paste
1 13.5 oz can light coconut milk, well shaken
2 Tbs granulated sugar
2 Tbs fresh lime juice
1 Tbs lower-sodium soy sauce
1 1/4 lbs peeled and deveined tail-on raw medium shrimp
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion
1 1/4 cups chopped red bell pepper
2 cups fresh pineapple chunks
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided
3 Tbs thinly sliced scallions
3 Tbs chopped unsalted roasted peanuts

1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high. Add curry paste; cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Add coconut milk and sugar; bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer; cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in lime juice and soy sauce.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over high. Add shrimp; cook until opaque, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove to a plate. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan. Add onion and bell pepper; cook, stirring often, until tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Add curry mixture, shrimp, pineapple, and 1/4 cup cilantro; cook until sauce is thickened, about 1 minute.

3. Divide shrimp mixture evenly among 4 bowls. Top with scallions, peanuts, and remaining 1/4 cup cilantro.

Servings: 4

Source: Cooking Light

Have a great day

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Mandarin, Cannabis, Shrinking Me, Bowling,

The Mandarin are still celebrating Canada Day - they do so from July 1 to July 31. We went there for lunch today with the friends who had helped us driving us from the hospital. Much to my surprise, with my painful legs, I managed to serve myself at the buffet quite easily. I got a few slices of chocolate dipped bacon but was a little disappointed this year. I was also very disappointed in their Hot and Sour Soup today. Tasted as though there were something missing. Great pity, it is one of my favourite things to eat there. The Maple Glazed Salmon, one of their Canada Day specials, was delicious. I must say their spring and egg rolls made mine look a bit pathetic LOL

We then went straight to the grocery store and collected my order - Matt always collects the car and puts it back in the garage for me, long walk for me. I took the trolley full of groceries into the front lobby but couldn't get them any further. I need my cannabis, not going til July 30. Hopefully I won't have to reschedule again.

Forgot, Monday I also went for a bone density test. Went for one a long time ago, don't remember how long, and I had gone from 5 ft. 6 in to 5 ft. 5 in. Now I am 5 ft. 3 1/2 in. I am shrinking. Don't know the results of any of the other tests of course.

Matt keeps saying we won't go bowling tomorrow. Oh yes we will, I am quite determined. If I sit at the scoring table I don't have much walking to do and should manage OK. I know we took all 7 points last week although we weren't there, but what our standing is at the moment I don't know. We were at #1.

Just came across this article about getting rid of fruit flies. I know we are plagued with them, more some summers than others. Thought you might find  the article of help as well.

I thought this sounded delicious. I have never been a fan of canned tuna although I do enjoy fresh tuna. However, lobster is probably my favourite food. For most of you I would suggest buying your lobsters cooked. I also haven't a clue what Fresh Express Veggie Lover's Salad Blend is, something one would have to guess at I think.

Lobster Niçoise Salad

Steamed lobster is a luxurious swap for tuna in this otherwise-classic, veggie-loaded Niçoise salad. In a pinch—or if you don't want to deal with a giant pot of boiling water on a steamy summer day—
many supermarkets have freshly picked lobster meat at their seafood counter or in the freezer case. Serve with a warm baguette for lunch or dinner.

11 oz Fresh Express Veggie Lover's Salad Blend
3  1 1/4-1 1/2 pound live lobsters
1 lb small new potatoes
1 lb green beans, trimmed
4 cups mixed baby salad greens or arugula
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
½ cup Niçoise olives or other black olives
2 anchovy fillets, chopped
? tsp salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1 ½ tsp grated lemon zest
¼ cup lemon juice
3 Tbs minced fresh chives
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1. To prepare lobsters: Bring 4 inches of water to a rolling boil in a very large pot. Add lobsters, claw-side down; cover and cook until a leg pulls out easily, 14 to 16 minutes. Remove from the pot. When cool enough to handle, remove the tail and claws from the body. Cut open the tail with kitchen shears. Insert a fork into the tail on an angle and pull out the meat. Crack open the claws with a lobster cracker or nutcracker and remove the meat from the claw and knuckle. (The body is delicious to snack on: pull off the legs, crack open the body and eat the bits of meat inside.) To prepare potatoes & green beans: Bring 1 inch of water to a boil in a large pot fitted with a steamer basket. Add potatoes, cover and cook until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove to a cutting board to cool. Add more water to the pot, if necessary, so it's at least 1 inch deep. Add green beans to the steamer basket, cover and cook until bright green and just tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Rinse in a colander with cold water until cool. Drain thoroughly. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, cut in half, if desired. To prepare vinaigrette: Mash anchovies and salt in a medium bowl using the back of a spoon. Stir in pepper, lemon zest, lemon juice and chives. Whisk in oil in a slow steady stream until well combined. To assemble salad: Arrange greens on a serving platter. Top with the lobster meat, potatoes, green beans, tomatoes and olives. Spoon about ¼ cup of the vinaigrette over the top. Serve the remaining vinaigrette on the side.

2. To make ahead: Refrigerate cooked lobster, green beans, potatoes and vinaigrette separately for up to 1 day.

Servings: 6

Author: Kathy Gunst
Source: Eating Well Magazine

Have a great day

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Boring Medical, Rain, Bear Joke,

Well I am sick and tired of all this stuff so I am quite sure you must be. Went to family doc, she is sending me back to vascular surgeon. Will see what happens when that happens. Went for bone density as well, have shrunk another 2 1/2 inches - honey I shrunk myself LOL.

We got some more rain this evening (Monday) we have not been over indulged with the wet stuff this summer. Got plenty of it today.

Don't think I mentioned the student pharmacist I was interviewed by last week. Really nice young woman called Emma. Our topics ranged all over the place. Told her about the lions eating the poachers and the idiot man who got out of the car to take close ups of lions. She mentioned the bears which were in the news being fed. I said "you do know what to do if a bear charges you?" her response, jump about and yell etc. No, said I, if a bear charges you just pay him. She cracked up. I was surprised she had never heard it before, it is an oldie after all. She really had great problems stopping laughing.!!

Threw together some stuff I had in the freezer with some veg. Not a very exciting day. Right now too lazy to find a recipe, sorry.

Going to Mandarin for lunch Tuesday.

Have a great day

Monday, July 16, 2018

Mercury Retrograde, Hospital Visit,

The way my life has been going lately, I thought it must definitely be Mercury Retrograde. In fact that doesn't begin until July 26. First it was the car then Thursday morning I had a really debilitating attack of diarrhea and at the same time my lower legs went totally numb. I already had knee problems for no reason I was aware of and could hardly walk I finally called for an ambulance. On the way to the hospital one of them put an IV into my hand in case they needed to pump something into me, turned out he did it wrong!!!!! So later I had to have another one. The one done in the ambulance was damned painful. Anyway, they are all checking me over when I had to go to the bathroom. What I saw in the pan made me call the nurse, lot of blood. They decided to admit me and give me an endoscopy. Had that done and they didn't find anything, next decision, a colonoscopy, just what I wanted!!!! Everyone has always assured me the preparation is the worst part. I was having terrific trouble feeling warm in the hospital, even Matt had to ask for a warm blanket whilst he was sitting there. Luckily I had my heavy sweater with me (I was still in my nightdress) am I glad I grabbed it on the way out. Once we realised I had to stay the night, I called friends who live within walking distance of the hospital and they took Matt home. I called the garage and said I had no clue as to when we would be picking up the car. He assured me it was fine and he would store it away at night.

I was telling my cleaner that I seem to attract sassy nurses. She assured me that was because I am sassy anyway!! She should know, she is another sassy one.

Friday afternoon I had the pleasure of my first colonoscopy. As I was concerned about Matt and wanting to get home, the surgeon suggested I did without sedation, so I did. Am I nuts or what? I told him I had a double length colon (was told that  40 some years ago) I don't think he believed me, he did by the time he finished. I watched every minute on TV. Yes, it did hurt now and again, but really wasn't too bad. Now I know what my colon looks like, LOL. Got home just before supper on Friday having had little or nothing in the way of food for 2 days. Wasn't feeling like jumping the moon so didn't have our usual Friday night drinks before supper. Basically had Chicken Noodle Soup from a packet and some cheese and crackers. Went to bed early and slept like the proverbial log. I still don't know anything more about my legs. They X-rayed my kneee and said nothing about it. I am going to phone Monday morning and see what I can find out.

Saturday morning, as I described it to the garage, got up feeling like a spring chicken and by 10 ish felt like an old boiler.. I notice a lot of typos in this, please excuse them if I miss them. Later, on Saturday, a neighbour in the building asked me for some photo/PC help which I gave and then, having told her about everything, she took me to the garage to get my car. At least we are mobile again now, if we want to be anyway. I must admit I am still not feeling 100%. Monday afternoon I have to go for a Bone Density test too. Had to put if off once before.

I cooked a Pork Tenderloin Diablo for supper, pretty good dish. I've made it once or twice and it is fairly quick and easy to do as well. A friend told me to take it easy and not try and be chef of the week. Easier said than done, I am a pretty particular eater I guess. I have plans later this week, I hope, to make the following recipe. You must admit it does sound easy.  I remember my mother used to make something similar when I was a kid. Never heard of churns in those days.

Easy No-Churn Oreo Ice Cream

2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
20 Oreo cookies coarsely crushed

1. In a stand mixer (or in a large bowl with a hand mixer) beat the cream until stiff peaks form. While continuing to beat, slowly add in the vanilla and sweetened condensed milk. Mix until combined. Gently fold in the cookies with a spatula. Transfer the mixture to a freezer safe container with a lid and freeze for at least 4 hours. Scoop and enjoy!

Source: Southern Bite

Have a great day

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Karma, Car, Radiation

What goes around certainly comes around I have lifted a quote directly from Care2Karma can be pretty amazing. A group of poachers who broke into a South African game preserve with the apparent intention of killing endangered rhinos for their horns instead became the victims. A pride of six lions attacked and ate them. I think that is definitely just deserts. I have linked the article if you wish to read it. Couldn't resist this picture of the lion looking as though he has just finished eating .. something. If only they could make sure lions were close to all the elephants and rhinos. Fully reading the article, this took place on a Game Reserve and they have the lions to help protect the rhinos as well as dogs for the same purpose.

I was somewhat teed at lunchtime on Wednesday to discover our car would not be ready after all, probably not until Thursday. Means we have to miss bowling. Might even have to miss out on Thursday bowling and even my Cannabis appointment. The problem is finding the right part for our aged jalopy. This made me wonder, these people who buy antique cars, where do they get their parts from?

Must be my day for finding interesting tit bits. Apparently the notebooks from Marie Curie, who pioneered research on radioactive materials, are so dangerously reactive today, they have to be kept in lead lined boxes. She died in 1934 of an illness caused by radiation.

Like everyone else in the world, I think, I was delighted to hear they got all the kids out of the cave system. What a horrifying saga for the kids and their coach. Went to our coffee klatsche this morning and everyone was talking about it. There is talk of charging the coach. I think he has had enough punishment already.

This recipe is right up my street. My only problem might be getting Matt to part with the gin.

Low Sodium Gravlax

Our herby salt-and-sugar mix offers big cured-salmon flavor with half the sodium of store brands. Be sure to use Morton kosher salt here. Diamond kosher weighs about half as much and will give you
dramatically different results. Gin’s botanical flavorings subtly season the fish.

1 cup loosely packed fresh dill leaves
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup Morton kosher salt
1 tsp caraway seeds
1 Tbs dry gin
1 1 lb  skin-on salmon fillet

1. Combine dill, sugar, salt, and caraway seeds in a food processor; process until bright green, about 1 minute.

2. Brush gin over flesh side of fish; rub both sides of fish with dill mixture to cover completely. (Use more dill mixture on thicker portions of fish and less on thinner portions.) Wrap fish tightly in several layers of plastic wrap, and place in a baking dish; place another baking dish on top of fish, and refrigerate. Flip fish twice a day; allow fish to cure until it’s firm to the touch but not leathery, 1 to 2 days. Scrape dill mixture from fish; rinse fish well with cold water. Pat completely dry with paper towels; cut into very thin slices. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Servings: 12

Source: Cooking Light

Have a great day

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Lunch, Car, Shopping,

Went to lunch at the Red Lobster as I said. Enjoyed it and it was great to see my friend - haven't seen her in a while. Crab Fest has started but Matt was the only one who had crab - Crab bites which he said were good. I don't think he touched the sauces though, I could be wrong. I had two of their "tasters". Both shrimp dishes. Very good. One with a really spicy sauce which I want to hunt for on the internet. I think it would be great for egg rolls etc.

Then we left to come home, I was planning to go to the store and pick up groceries but unfortunately the car started making very nasty noises. Went straight to the garage. Turns out it is broken springs and coils (old car of course) gonna cost $1,000 - however, I am beginning to be glad we do have an old car as everyone, including the garage today, says how solid a car it is. It has certainly been a good one for us. Will get the car back tomorrow morning, in time for bowling!!

Then I phoned the grocery store and Ghupal - one of the click and collect people - offered to bring the groceries to us after her shift. Really nice of her. Then I realised our shopping trolley was in the car so borrowed one from a neighbour. Ghupal arrived around 9:20 or so and we unloaded everything into the borrowed trolley. She lives fairly close to us apparently which was convenient. I was very grateful to her.

Guess I need to get up early in the morning, not sure what time they said the car would be ready, so...

This recipe is from Mushrooms Canada. I would not use Miracle Whip personally, but each to their own.

Cheeseburger Quesadillas
Recipe developed in partnership with Ontario Beef.
Prep Time: 10 mins. | Cook Time: 15 mins. | Serves: 4


8 oz (227g) fresh crimini mushrooms
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 lb (225g) lean ground beef
1 clove garlic, minced
8 (8 inch) flour tortillas
2 cups cheddar cheese
½ small red onion, sliced
2 small roma tomatoes, thinly sliced
¼ cup (60 mL) dill pickles, sliced
1 cup (250 mL) shredded lettuce

Burger Sauce:
½ cup (125 mL) Miracle Whip
2 tbsp (30 mL) ketchup
2 tbsp (30 mL) yellow mustard
2 tbsp (30 mL) relish
2 tbsp (30 mL) onion, finely diced
1 tsp (5 mL) white sugar


1. Place mushrooms in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse until finely chopped.

2. In a large saucepan, brown mushrooms until moisture has been released, approximately 5-6 minutes. Add onion, beef and garlic, continue to cook for 10 minutes or until ground beef is cooked through.

3. Meanwhile, combine all burger sauce ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.

4. Place one tortilla in the bottom of a dry grill pan. Sprinkle with cheese, red onion, tomatoes, and dill pickles. Spoon on meat mixture. Top with the second tortilla. If your grill pan comes with a Panini press (lid) place preheated press on top of tortilla. If no press is available, carefully flip the quesadilla over using a spatula.

5. Remove from skillet and cut into wedges. Serve topped with fresh shredded lettuce and burger sauce. 

Have a great day

Monday, July 9, 2018

My Week.

Quiet day today, not much doing all round. Meant to take the car in for its emissions test but didn't get round to it.

For supper I did the chicken dish from the air fryer booklet again. It is pretty good and this time I used paprika which was better.

Tuesday is going to be busy, Foot Nurse in the morning, lunch with a friend at the Red Lobster and then of course picking up my groceries. Wish they could bring 'em back and put 'em away for me too.

Having made an appointment with the Cannabis lab for Thursday afternoon, they sent me a video to watch which gave me some information I was unaware of. I didn't know I couldn't drive for 4 hours after having a dose. That could be rather inconvenient I think. I still don't really know if I can afford it anyway although I certainly have enough aches and pains. Not that it is likely to occur, but of course one cannot travel outside Canada with it either. Even if it is legal here, it isn't elsewhere yet. Or, not when the video was made. There are quite a few methods of taking it too. I knew of some but not all. Certainly no intention of smoking it, I don't want that nonsense again. I quit smoking once after all, plus it isn't good for one's lungs apparently.

Of course Wednesday is bowling league day. Our team is sitting at #1 at the moment. I wonder how long we can keep that position. I am not hopeful, or trying not to be too much so anyway.

I am often on the lookout for something different for breakfast. This recipe serves 6 but I am sure it would freeze and be reheatable (is that a word). Looks pretty good.

Mushroom, Bacon and Onion Tart

1 refrigerated pie crust circle (from a 15-ounce package)
6 strips bacon
8 oz fresh white mushrooms, sliced (about 2-1/2 cups)
1 cup sliced onion
1 container (8 ounces) sour cream
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp oregano leaves, crushed
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
4 large eggs

1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Following package directions, place pie crust circle in a 10-inch tart pan or 9-inch pie plate; trim or flute edge. Bake until just golden, 5 to 7 minutes; cool slightly; set aside. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until crisp, about 5 minutes.

2. Remove to paper towels; crumble; set aside. Pour off bacon drippings from pan. Add mushrooms and onion; cook, stirring frequently, until mushroom liquid evaporates, 6 to 8 minutes; cool. In a large bowl beat until smooth sour cream, eggs, salt, oregano and black pepper.

3. Pour over baked crust; top with cooled mushroom mixture; sprinkle with bacon. Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 300°F; bake until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, 5 to 7 minutes longer.

Servings: 6

Source: The Mushroom Council.

Have a great day

Egg Rolls

So Saturday I made my egg rolls. Made a couple of errors which I realised in hind sight so will know what to do next time. They did end up a lot crispier than they should have been.

But as Ivy Shorts said, there is a learning curve. I made the dipping sauce from the recipe I posted and it was pretty good.

I'm sorry that is it tonight. For some  reason I feel as if I haven't slept for weeks.

Have a great day

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Migraine, Great British Baking Show,

Having had a migraine today (Friday) I recalled that we had watched a documentary about them the other day and thought I would remind my self. I went to the Mayo clinic page and reading it many of the symptoms seemed the same as a stroke which made me think how does one know which is which. I didn't know one could get tingling or numbness in one's arm or leg when one is "coming on".  Really didn't know much about them even though I have had them as long as I remember. My mom had them too, she called them sick headaches and had no idea they were migraines. Neither of us had/have ever been treated for them - I just use Tylenol 3 these days, in the UK I took codeine, basically the same thing.

Watching The Great British Bake Show again, I really enjoy that show. I wouldn't like to take part though, I am not a baker per se. One of the challenges tonight was to make a several layered meringue cake with fillings. What I would call a Pavlova and not sure why they didn't. I have actually done that, many years ago now, but I built a tall basket of meringue and then filled it with whipped cream and fruits etc. Much the same as I do with the Pavolva rings I buy these days. I also discovered there were three different types of meringue, French, Swiss and Italian. The Italian looks like the easiest to me. I must remember that in future.

I made my filling for the Egg Rolls today but must admit I think it needs some salt. The recipe calls for soy sauce, but I don't think that's enough. Will see what I feel tomorrow when I make the actual rolls. For our Friday supper I made Shrimp Creole which I haven't made for a long time. My recipe is a combination of recipes I have used over the years so can't attribute it to any source in particular. By the way, it is pronounced as a cross between Wuster and Wooster Sauce. Non Brits seem to have a problem with that. I actually came across a recipe the other day where the ingredient was typed as Worchester - shudders.

Shrimp Creole

1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/2 cup celery
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3 tsp peanut oil
flour for thickening
ground black pepper
2 cup fresh tomatoes or canned tomatoes drained
1 6 oz can tomato paste
1 Bay leaf
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp chili powder (or Tabasco sauce) and/or fresh chillis
1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup sherry
1 lb shrimp cleaned and deveined
cooked white rice, basmati for preference

1. Sauté onions, peppers, celery and garlic in hot oil until tender. Make a roux with a little flour. Add tomatoes, paste, sherry and seasoning. Simmer 45 minutes. Add shrimp and simmer for 10 mins. Just before service add Worcester sauce. Serve over rice and sprinkle with Parmesan.

Servings: 4

Have a great day

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Fireworks, Bowling, Cleaner, Medical Marijuana,

I know at least one person who did not like the fireworks on the 4th. Apparently someone (a neighbour?) chucked fireworks in the garbage and set their house on fire. Amazing how stupid people can be. I was surprised to read recently that more accidents are caused by sparklers. I thought those were supposed to be pretty harmless, obviously not.

Bowling was not a success today, both of us were hurting and neither of us were bowling worth a damn. I was getting 190s on Wednesday and 128 on Thursday!!! It started to rain later in the afternoon not much, but I wondered if it was the pressure change which was making us hurt more.

Our cleaner came today, another client had requested a swap. She showed me pix of herself in an obstacle race. Oh to be that fit. She is considerably younger than I am of course. She was proud she had kept up with a group of friends who were all somewhat younger than her. If it had been me I would have been proud to keep up with a 90 yr. old. My cleaner also took away the kaput toaster oven for me to get rid of it. Nice of her. Don't tell her I said that mind you. I have finally got round to making an appointment with the cannabis lab next week. Gotta do something about this pain.

Friday I am thinking of doing the filling for my egg rolls which I plan to have on Saturday. Will have to see how it goes. This is a long recipe but there are lots of options and advice plus I am not sure I will bother with the sauce, never have it in the restaurant. Of course I won't be frying them in the accepted sense of the word but doing them in the air fryer.

Spring Rolls! (aka Egg Rolls)

Homemade spring rolls are nothing like the ones at suburban Chinese takeout joints with unidentifiable mushy fillings and overly greasy. These are delicately crispy and golden, just like they should be, and you will actually be able to taste the filling. ?? Watch the VIDEO below for the
wrapping technique. Fry them for the best results, or bake them (Note 5). Also see Note 7 for explanation of terminology differences re: Egg Rolls and Spring Rolls! Feel free to sub the Filling ingredients with similar vegetables.

1 Tbs oil
2 garlic cloves , finely chopped or minced
13 oz pork mince (ground pork), or chicken or turkey
6 dried shiitake mushrooms soaked in boiling water OR 8 fresh (Note 1)
1 1/2 cups shredded carrot (1 large or 2 small)
1 1/2 cups (heaped) bean sprouts
1 1/2 cups (packed) shredded green cabbage (any type is fine)
1 tsp cornflour / cornstarch
1 1/2 Tbs Oyster Sauce
2 tsp soy sauce (light or all purpose is best, dark is also ok)

Spring Rolls:
15-20 spring roll wrappers, defrosted (21.5 cm / 8” squares) OR 35 - 40 small spring roll wrappers (Note 2), or Egg Roll wrappers to make Egg Rolls (Note 6)
2 tsp cornflour (for sealing rolls)
1 Tbs water (for sealing rolls)
Oil for frying (I use vegetable) OR oil spray for baking (I use canola)
Sweet and Sour Sauce (makes ~ 2/3 cup):
2 tsp cornflour/ cornstarch
2 Tbs water
½ cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup brown sugar (adjust to taste)
2 Tbs tomato ketchup
2 tsp soy sauce


2. Heat oil in a skillet or wok over high heat. Add garlic, stir quickly, then add pork. Cook, breaking it up as you go, until it turns white.

3. Add carrot, bean sprouts, cabbage and mushrooms. Cook for 3 minutes or until vegetables are wilted. Add cornflour, soy sauce and Oyster sauce, cook for 1 minute until the liquid is gone. The Filling should not be watery, it should be kind of sticky (watery filling = soggy spring rolls = ?? ).

4. Cool Filling (super speedy: spread on tray, refrigerate 5 minutes). (Hot filling = spring rolls burst open = ?? )


6. Mix cornflour and water in a small bowl (for sealing the rolls).

7. Carefully peel off one spring roll wrapper, keep the others covered under a damp tea towel.

8. Place the wrapper with the SMOOTH SIDE DOWN (Note 3) in a diamond position. Place a very heaped dessert spoon of filling on the bottom. Roll up halfway, fold sides in, then finish rolling. Use cornflour sludge to seal. They should be about 5" long, 1" wide once wrapped.

9. Pour enough oil in a wok or large saucepan (Note 4) so it is double the height of the spring rolls. Heat on medium high until hot - stick a bamboo chopstick or wooden spoon handle in, if rapid bubbles appear, then it's hot enough.

10. Carefully place spring rolls in the oil (about 4 - 5 at a time) and cook, turning occasionally, until deep golden - around 1 1/2 - 2 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

11. Repeat with remaining spring rolls. Serve while hot with Sweet and Sour Sauce!

12. BAKING option:

13. Place spring rolls on a rack and place the rack on a tray. Spray very generously with oil all over (use canola or other natural oil). Bake at 200C/400F (standard) or 180C/350F (fan / convection) for 20 to 25 minutes until golden and crispy - no need to turn.


15. Combine ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to simmer, stirring regularly, then simmer until it thickens to taste (about 3 - 5 minutes).

16. Recipe Notes

17. Shitaake Mushrooms: Soak dried mushrooms in plenty of boiled water for 20 minutes or until rehydrated (don’t do this step if using fresh mushrooms). Drain, squeeze excess water out of the mushrooms (like they are a sponge), then finely chop.

18. Dried Shitaake mushrooms are available at Asian grocery stores and in the Asian section of some supermarkets. They are whole dried mushrooms and, like porcini mushrooms, the mushroom flavour is more intense so it brings a great savouriness (“umami”) to anything it is added to.

19. If you make this with fresh mushrooms instead, finely chop them and add them before the carrot to give them a head start on the cooking, to ensure all the moisture inside cooks out (because wet filling = spring rolls burst open).

20. You can get spring roll wrappers at the supermarkets. Frozen section, Spring roll wrappers are made of wheat. You can also make this with rice paper spring roll wrappers (that are used to make things like Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls) but will need to be soaked first before wrapping, and the spring roll will come out crispy with a bubbly surface and kind of see through.

21. Look closely at the wrapper and you’ll notice one side is slightly rough, one side is smoother. You want the smooth side on the outside of the spring roll – looks prettier. Not a deal killer. ??

22. Because of the shape of woks, the oil usage is more efficient than using a saucepan or skillet. i.e. With a wok, there is more surface area with less oil usage.

23. FRYING vs BAKING: they look very similar! Frying makes spring rolls that are more delicate, crispy and flaky as they should be. With baking, the wrapper is still very crispy, but it is not quite the same delicate flaky texture. Also with baking, the wrapper flavour is slightly more dominant. Tip for baking is to SPRAY VERY WELL with oil!! If you don't use a rack, then turn the spring rolls at about 15 minutes.

24. MAKE AHEAD / FREEZING: Freeze before cooking them cook from frozen. Best to serve freshly cooked so don't try to store cooked ones. ??

25. EGG ROLLS vs SPRING ROLLS: Egg Rolls are an American-Chinese dish, they are not found in Asia. Fundamentally, they are the same - flaky, crispy pastry enclosed around a filling. Use Spring Roll Wrappers to make spring rolls, and Egg Roll Wrappers to make egg rolls (and make them larger, if you want).

26. Egg Rolls are typically larger than spring rolls found in Asia and the rest of the world (no surprises there! ??) The pastry for spring rolls tends to be thinner and a bit more see through, so it's got a more delicate flaky wrapper. The wrappers for egg rolls are typically thicker and therefore oilier. BUT having said that, I have ordered Egg Rolls numerous times in the US and they were spring rolls.

27. I prefer Spring Rolls. The wrapper is more delicate, flakier and doesn't absorb as much oil - an all round better eating experience! Plus they are a good size - I find that most Egg Rolls are too large i.e. too much filling, falls out too easily.

Yield: 15 - 20

Author: Nagi

Have a great day

Oops, Bowling, Air Fryer again,

I backed into someone's car in the parking lot at the bowling alley. I was in a bit of a tizzy at the time and I didn't think it was much so didn't stop. However, having looked at the back of our car which was unmarked, I figured I had better phone the bowling alley and let them know it was me. The woman who owned the car phoned me later and said she would get an estimate. She did so, came to our building and showed me the estimate and the damage. I would have called it minor but not the garage apparently. They wanted $800 including a rental. I said I wanted a second opinion and she said she would talk to her husband. I then phoned my insurance company for advice. Basically they said all she had to do, because we have No Fault insurance here, was to contact her insurance company who would take care of everything and then get in touch with my people. And, as this is my first accident, I have accident forgiveness which means it will not affect our premium although that only works once. Matt was seething.

Pity, rather ruined a good afternoon bowling as I pushed my average up by 4 points and as a team we had won two games before we left.  Our team was standing alone in second place!!!

I had planned to air fry chicken breast for supper and so, in the middle of all this hoo ha with the car, it was getting late so I kind of rushed around and threw everything together. Surprisingly it worked. I had some broccoli which I cooked with it and followed with Strawberries and Cream. Having eaten, and enjoyed it, I can now think of all kinds of other flavourings one could use. But talk about quick and easy.

Basic Chicken

2-4 chicken breasts
2 tbs all purpose flour (I used that much for only 2 breasts)
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
melted butter or cooking oil (I used olive oil) butter might have tasted pretty good, but no time to melt it)

Preheat the air fryer to 400°F. Combine all dry ingredients in a small bowl (I used a plastic bag). Lightly brush the chicken with the melted butter or cooking oil and roll in the mixture of flour and spices. Cook for 8 - 10 minutes, turn them over and cook for an additional 8-10 minutes.

Have a great day

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

July 4, Asparagus, Bambi,

To all my American friends, and relatives, I wish you a Happy 4th.

I actually now have two American relatives. Both cousins, and their spouses and children too of course. I know at least one friend who will be wearing earplugs over the majority of this holiday. I must admit we suffered a bit on Sunday as although there were official fireworks, there was some idiot setting off really loud banger which sounded close enough to have been on our balcony. Matt was already in bed and it woke him up. This was gone 11. More were lit around midnight.

Rushed over to the asparagus farm this morning and got a large load of the green stuff, weeds as Matt has taken to calling it. He does eat it but not with the same enthusiasm. This time this is definitely the last this year. However, I have now bought the ingredients to make some Egg Rolls so that will be my next project, in the air fryer of course. I also got an avocado for my other recipe.

Nothing much on TV tonight for us, so I put Bambi on and was informed it was a movie for children and not for someone Matt's age. I enjoyed it, I guess being 3 years younger makes a difference!! I am still in touch with my inner child!

Won't give you a recipe today, the majority of my readers will probably be barbecuing.

Have a great day and a super holiday.