Saturday, November 30, 2019

Zoey, Fish, Instant Pot

Matt and Zoey's rear end!!

Matt and Zoey - bit lopsided
Today, ladydog visited us with Zoey who went straight to Matt who already had some dog biscuits ready. He fed her a bag of biscuits in very short time even though we had a lunch break. Had to move them so Matt wouldn't feed her at the table. Once he would never have done that. Ah well. We had Subway sandwiches for lunch the smell of which Zoey found very interesting. They were very enjoyable, thanks ladydog.

On the way home, ladydog took me to Victoria St. Market. I particularly wanted to get some scallops and then I decided it was time I really learned how to cook fish, Matt always used to do it. I was astounded to discover that Haddock is the same price as Arctic Char which I think is an exceptionally expensive fish. Cod was much cheaper so that's what I bought. Now to decide what to do with it. I also bought some sausages as we had run out plus a sirloin steak. I didn't even buy bananas and I ended up spending quite a bit of money. For supper we finished up the coconut shrimp. I could eat them ad infinitum. I bought some scallops too today.

I am so excited, I have just received a recipe for Lava Cake which is one of my favourite desserts, but this is to cook in the Instant Pot. Matt used to make them very successfully but I tried them once in the oven and they were a bust. So now I want to try in the Instant Pot. This recipe is for a 6 or 8 qt. Pot, I can't remember but think I can get 2 ramekins in my Pot. See you can buy a 6 qt. for under $60 at the moment. Matt would kill me if I bought another, apart from which, I haven't got room in my little kitchen.

Instant Pot Chocolate Lava Cakes

Melt, Mix, Set Aside
4 oz Bittersweet Chocolate Chips, or Chocolate Bar, broken up (62% to 70% dark)
1/2 cup Unsalted Butter (room temp)
1/2 tsp Espresso Powder (or instant coffee) optional

Mix Together
2 Eggs (room temp)
2 Egg Yolks (room temp)
3 Tbs Flour
1 cup Powdered Sugar (Confectioners Sugar)
1/4 tsp Salt
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

1. Add 1 1/2 cups of water to a 6 qt or 8 qt electric pressure cooker. Set the trivet/rack in the bottom.

2. Spray the inside of the ramekins with cooking spray and set aside. Make sure you are using the 6 oz size.

3. In a microwave safe bowl, add the chocolate chips/chunks and the butter. Heat in microwave for 30 seconds. Then remove from microwave and slowly stir to combine. Heat again for 20 seconds and stir some more. Repeat again for 10 seconds if necessary. Stir until smooth and combined. Then stir in the espresso powder, if using. Set aside.

4. In a mixing bowl, add the eggs, yolks, flour, powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla. Using a hand mixer, mix on low speed until well combined.

5. Pour the chocolate mixture into the batter and mix on low speed to combine.

6. Pour the batter into the sprayed ramekins and distribute evenly between the four. The batter will be a bit thick.

7. Place the ramekins in the pot on the trivet/rack. 3 on the bottom, and 1 sitting on top of the 3. No need to cover them.

8. Place the lid on the pot and lock in place, setting the steam release knob to the Sealing position.

9. Press the Pressure Cook/Manual button or dial, then the +/- button or dial to select 7 minutes (High pressure).

10. When the cooking cycle is finished, turn the steam release knob to the venting position to do a Quick Release of the steam/pressure.

11. When the pin in the lid drops down you can open it. The cakes will be a little puffed up, but they will settle down.

12. Please use extreme caution as you remove the ramekins, as they will be very hot, and very slippery. Use some oven mitts and a small towel.

13. As soon as you are able to do so safely, invert the ramekins on individual small plates (or serve in the ramekin). Dust with powdered sugar, or garnish with ice cream, whipped cream, or some fresh berries.

14. Serve immediately.

Servings: 4

Author: Sandy Clifton
Source: Simply Happy Foodie

Have a great day

Friday, November 29, 2019

Lost Cane, Red Lobster, Zoey, Bowling, Christmas Cards,

There are times I worry about myself. This morning we were heading out to lunch with the bowling Travel League and I realised I hadn't got my collapsible cane, or any other cane for that matter. Taken my walker down to the car. Had a quick look in the back of the car but couldn't see it. Last I remembered using it was at the supermarket cafeteria yesterday (Wed). So went there and using Matt's cane, I went to their Customer Service, no cane (at least not mine), they said they might have it somewhere else. Went there and they didn't know what Customer Service was talking about, so no cane. I went across the hallway to the pharmacy and ended up buying myself a new collapsible cane. It wasn't cheap. Used it to get back to the car and as I got into the car I saw my older one on the back seat. Must be going blind or something. Anyway, we were running late so scooted off to the Red Lobster.

Not as many of  us as usual having lunch there but actually I found the smaller group better for general communication. Matt and I ordered Caesar Salads, NOT made with romaine lettuce because of the salmonella scare. Matt had shrimp on his and I had bay scallops on mine. I actually found the salad better with Iceberg lettuce and thoroughly enjoyed it although Matt wasn't as keen. No more Iceberg Caesar for him. His favourite is Yucatan Tilapia anyway. Whilst we were eating, the General Manager (Chris) came to talk to us and I told him that I hoped they would continue to offer this option. Had quite a chat and said that Red Lobster appeared in my blog frequently. Forgot to mention that one of our waitresses referred to Matt and I as regulars. He asked about my blog and what I wrote and I said anything that I felt like talking about. I then happened to mention the Knotted Gun and asked if anyone had heard of it, one of our party had done so. Chris said he would like to read about it so gave him my card, he gave me several of his. I just remembered there were a couple of their cheddar biscuits left and we put them in a bag to bring home for Matt who can, after all, eat anything he likes without gaining an ounce. (Told you I had considered divorcing him for cruelty). But they are still in the back of the car - along with my lost cane!

Zoey is coming for a visit tomorrow which will make Matt happy. Even if she only pays attention to him for cupboard love reasons. She is bringing ladydog with her and ladydog is bringing us a Subway lunch. Ladydog has been rehearsing like mad lately and also performing in various Christmas events. Lucky she has a bit of free time tomorrow.

Matt and I bowled on our own instead of being integrated with the rest of the bowlers. We are sufficiently slow that it keeps a whole team late, and in this case it would affect two teams. I had one very good game - when it doesn't  matter a damn of course - and one mediocre. However, I have asked that they be saved for any time we are not there. I also had a donut (only reason I go to the Travel League - free coffee and a donut) and got one for Matt which was supposed to be Rudolf. It was quite cute. It has a Timbit for a nose and some chocolate horns. Matt enjoyed it although I am not sure he realised what he was eating. Actually my donut was a little bit dry. I think, perhaps, that the Tim Horton's nearest the bowling alley doesn't get a very big turnover. Matt said his Rudolf tasted fresh enough.

It was nice to see everyone, haven't done so in a while as we haven't been with the Travel League since before I got sick last year. Of course everyone was wishing everyone Merry Christmas when they parted. Doesn't even seem like Christmas yet. I even got a Christmas Card. Haven't thought about those at all yet. Mind you, I mostly send out electronic cards these days. The postage, particularly overseas, amounts to a fortune and I just can't justify spending so much any more.

I just got an email with Quick and Easy Desserts for Thanksgiving. Presumably for 2020. However, I decided a dessert would be a good idea. This one is for a Pavlova and tells you how to make the meringue. These days I would just buy one from the store, much easier, except I haven't seen them there in a while. Certainly not since they started putting in Starbucks. You know, that expensive coffee bar.

Ambrosia Pavlova

Pineapple Curd
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp kosher salt
Grated zest of 1 lemon
1 large egg yolk
1/4 cup fresh pineapple juice
2 Tbs unsalted butter, melted

1/4 cup cornstarch
1 Tbs distilled white vinegar
1 Tbs vanilla extract
1 tsp kosher salt
2 cups sugar
8 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 cup very finely ground pistachios, toasted and cooled

1/4 cup sugar
Grated zest of 2 oranges
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 cup cold heavy cream
1 orange, peeled of its pith and cut into segments
1 grapefruit, peeled of its pith and cut into segments
1/2 cup candied cherries in syrup, such as Amarena Fabbri
Large dried coconut shavings, julienned lime zest and chopped pistachios, for serving

1. MAKE THE PINEAPPLE CURD In a small saucepan, whisk together the sugar, salt, lemon zest, and egg yolk until smooth. Add the pineapple juice and butter and stir until smooth. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring constantly. Once it begins to simmer, continue to cook and stir the curd until it is thickened and coats the back of a spoon, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool to room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.

2. MAKE THE MERINGUE Heat the oven to 350°. In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch, vinegar, vanilla, and salt until a thick paste forms. Put the sugar and egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and mix on low speed until smooth. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until soft peaks form. Add the cornstarch paste to the beating egg whites and continue to beat until very stiff and glossy peaks form, about 5 minutes. Add the pistachios and, using a rubber spatula, very gently fold until evenly incorporated.

3. Trace a 9-inch circle onto a sheet of parchment paper. Flip the sheet over and transfer it to a baking sheet; spray lightly with baking spray. Pile the meringue in the center of the circle and, using an offset spatula or small rubber spatula, form it into a 9-inch disk, smoothing the top and sides. Transfer to the oven and immediately lower the oven temperature to 215°. Bake until the meringue is dried on the outside and looks set, about 1 1/2 hours. Without opening the door, turn the oven off and let the meringue sit inside until completely cooled, at least 4 hours. (The cooling process allows the meringue to dry and cool slowly enough so that it doesn’t collapse on itself.) Once cooled, gently tip the meringue onto its side and peel away the parchment paper. Carefully place the meringue on a flat cake stand or serving platter.

4. WHEN READY TO SERVE, MAKE THE WHIPPED CREAM In a food processor, combine the sugar, orange zest, salt, and coconut milk in a food processor and process until the sugar is dissolved and the zest heavily perfumes the coconut milk. Pour into a large bowl, add the cream, and whisk until stiff peaks form. Pile the whipped cream onto the center of the meringue and gently nudge it to the edge of the meringue, leaving about a 1 1/2-inch border.

5. Arrange the orange and grapefruit segments on the cream and then drizzle with some of the pineapple curd. Dot the top with cherries, coconut, lime zest, and more chopped pistachios and serve immediately.

Servings: 8

Author: Ben Mims
Source: Food and Wine

Have a great day

Thursday, November 28, 2019

The Knotted Gun, Coffee Meeting, LCBO, Exercises, Scanning, Cooking,

I sometimes wonder where I have been - like today I read Viveka's post in My Guilty Pleasures and she talked about Non Violence, the Knotted Gun. Of which I had never heard.

Apparently it was originally designed as a memorial to John Lennon (one of the Beatles) who was assassinated outside his apartment. This should be everywhere in posters if not in statues. I think it is an excellent reminder of Peace. Checked with a few women in my exercise class and they had never heard of it either.

Funny how I can sit around doing damned all one day and the next it is go go go. Wednesday morning I went to my local Zehrs who owed me some sliced chicken. I sat in the cafeteria and phoned PC Express - they asked if I was going to pick it up, I said I was upstairs - he laughed and said he would bring it to  me. I then went and got a medium black coffee for $2.25 (Starbucks) and sat hoping someone would join me from the Alzheimer Society. As it happened, one person managed to turn up. We basically sat and talked cameras, he is an expert. The "new" cafeteria area is nice and they now have poinsettias on every table, but the chairs are metal and my bum was freezing.

I then went to the liquor store to get Matt some gin. Decided to get some more wine at the same time. The place is obviously stocking up for Christmas, they have masses of extra wine all over the place. That reminds me, forgot to tell you last week I went to the liquor store with the helpful young man who helped me again by getting something from the back of the store. I asked if they would take an order over the phone for me to just pick up, he assured me they would. They are very obliging at that store but it isn't the closest to me unfortunately.

When I got home I almost threw some lunch down my throat and went down to exercise class. I think I am doing a bit better these days although I hadn't been for a while.

Later my friend phoned to ask me if I could do another scan and email for her, so she came down and I did that. One benefit, I didn't have to take the dish back to her in which she had given us the cake.

I then spent a fair time in the kitchen cutting up veggies etc. etc. for supper which I am cooking in the Instant Pot.

Looking for a recipe which I think I would like to make, I came across this one from Kevin Lynch at Closet Cooking. My interest was immediately piqued when I saw the picture. However, as I have never thought much of Cottage Cheese on this continent, I figured I would use Goat Cheese.

Cottage Cheese and Egg Muffins with Ham and Cheddar Cheese

These cottage cheese and egg muffins are one of my favourite breakfasts and since I had some leftover ham I figured that it was a great opportunity to update the photos for this recipe which I originally posted back in 2008! I first came across the idea for these muffins on Kalyns Kitchen and
they reminded me of the cottage cheese muffins that my mother used to make when I was a kid so I had to make them. The primary ingredients of these muffins are the cottage cheese and eggs with a bit of flour to bind things together and from there you can add pretty much whatever you want! I particularly like the ham and cheese combo but I use other ingredients depending on what I feel like. Because of all of the moisture from the cottage cheese these muffins come out nice and light, fluffy and moist and what’s better is that with a minute in the microwave the leftovers from the fridge are just as good as freshly made so you can make a batch on the weekend and have quick breakfasts for the week. They also freeze really well so you can make them for later on when you know you will be busy. What a great way to enjoy some leftover ham, or a great reason to pick up some more ham!

1 cup cottage cheese
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup flour (gluten-free for gluten-free)
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 oz ham, diced
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
2 green onions, sliced

Mix the cottage cheese, eggs, flour, baking powder and salt followed by the ham, cheddar cheese and green onions, pour into a greased 12 muffin pan and bake in a preheated 400°F/200°C oven until golden brown and a toothpick poked into the centre comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes

Author: Kevin Lynch
Source: Closet Cooking

Author Notes
Instead of ham and cheese, use your favourite ingredients! (I like to add pickled jalapenos to these!)

These muffins freeze well!

Have a great day

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Cake, Coffee Morning, Spanish,

The other night I scanned and emailed a document for a friend in the building and she gave me a piece of carrot cake as a reward. We had a taste that night and finished it Tuesday night for supper. I christened it Poison Cake. It was absolutely delicious and just the kind of cake I should stay well away from. I could feel the inches piling on as I ate it.

Been a pretty quiet day today, sunny weather but of course fairy cold although maybe not that cold for this time of the year. I was told it was 8°C which isn't too bad. Or as I said to ladydog, a balmy summer's day. I did my Spanish this afternoon, I am beginning to get beyond stuff  that I learned some 50 years ago. Now my brain is really working overtime.

Well, being Wednesday, I am supposed to meet some or all of the Alzheimer Group, but as I haven't had any kind of reply from any of them, I guess I could be sipping coffee all alone. I am a little annoyed that nobody has bothered to reply. If something doesn't happen I will abandon the whole thing.

Amongst the many hundreds of recipes I am getting for Thanksgiving, this is a simple little appetizer or hors d'oeuvres.

Goat Cheese-Stuffed Roasted Figs

Simple, sweet, and totally indulgent, these figs will be the talk of your party... even though they will
be the easiest appetizer to make!

12 figs
Goat Cheese
Warmed honey

1. Quarter 12 figs, cutting three-quarters of the way down. Stuff the figs with goat cheese. Roast in an oiled pan at 425° for 12 minutes, until softened. Serve drizzled with warmed honey.

Yield: 12 figs

Source: Food and Wine

Have a great day

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Bowling, Groceries, Peeve, Movie,

Bowling wasn't baaad, but it wasn't good either. One consolation, my average stayed the same. Matt said he bowled so badly he was probably going to quit. Says that a lot. Last week he beat me hollow. 

Decided to do two small grocery orders this week (so there is a points offer if you spend $100, typical) anyway, we collected today's contribution but, annoyingly, didn't get the cold cuts Matt eats for lunch. The young lady I spoke to apologized but it wasn't really her fault. It was another person's. However, Wednesday I should be meeting up with some of  the Alzheimer Group, hopefully, so said I would pick it up then.

I have another peeve which I could have mentioned yesterday, 91 Thanksgiving Recipes, 45 Thanksgiving Desserts, etc. etc. Who on earth do they think has the time to plough through that many recipes. It's somewhat boring anyway. I have usually had it by about 5. 

As long as I can remember, I have heard about the movie Goodbye Mr. Chips. but I had never seen it. Actually it was made the year after I was born. Tonight I saw it on TCM and thoroughly enjoyed it. What a great movie. I am sure Birgit of BB Creations knows the movie and agrees with me. I only knew two of the actors, Greer Garson and John Mills who played a very young man. I hadn't realised John Mills was that old, I have seen him in many movies and we both love to see him in our DVD of Cats where he plays Gus the Theatre Cat, brilliantly I may say. I was in tears once or twice and especially at the end of Goodbye Mr. Chips. Now I would like to see it again. Not sure whether Matt enjoyed it or not.

I would love to try these, they would be idea for me, crispy base with smoked salmon and caviar. What could be more delicious. Only problem I don't have a waffle iron.

Tater Tot Waffles with Smoked Salmon and Caviar

Jen Pelka of The Riddler in San Francisco makes supercrunchy and delicious waffles using Tater
Tots. Here she tops the waffles with caviar and smoked salmon, creating a delicious and decadent dish that’s ideal with Champagne.

Nonstick cooking spray
8 cups thawed frozen Tater Tots (32 ounces)
Flaky sea salt
6 Tbs crème fraîche
12 thin slices smoked salmon
Dill sprigs,
caviar and fresh lemon juice, for serving

1. Heat an 8-inch waffle iron; preheat the oven to 200°. Grease the waffle iron with nonstick spray. Spread 2 cups of the tots on it; sprinkle with salt. Close and cook on medium high until nearly crisp, about 5 minutes. Open the waffle iron and fill in any holes in the waffle with more tots, then close and cook until golden and crispy, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a baking sheet; keep warm in the oven. Repeat with the remaining tots.

2. Top each warm waffle with 1 1/2 tablespoons of crème fraîche, 3 slices of smoked salmon, a few small sprigs of dill, a dollop of caviar and a squeeze of lemon juice. Serve immediately.

Yield: Four 8-inch waffles

Author: Jen Pelka

Have a great day

Monday, November 25, 2019

Thanksgiving and Elections, TV,

I must say I will be glad when Thanksgiving in the US is over. I am sick of all the Thanksgiving sides and desserts in the recipes I am getting. I didn't know there were so many ways to cook Brussels Sprouts, not to mention roasted asparagus (way out of season of course, unless you live in Ecuador or Chile). There there are Pecan Pumpkin Pies, never liked Pumpkin pie anyway, shh don't tell anyone. Of course talking of things "going on forever" we are also having to put up with American Electioneering with which we are being pounded every day from one source or another. Sadly a lot of our TV comes from the States. I have never understood why they can't have their elections over in a few weeks like Canada or the UK. Not that I have ever understood US elections anyway. I was talking to a woman from Philadelphia the other day, she doesn't really understand them either!!

Oops, it is already 11 - got engrossed watching The Chaperone with the lead part being played by Elizabeth McGovern who played Her Ladyship in Downton Abbey. It was an excellent play and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Based on fact apparently. So anyway, I am running late.

Roasted Filet of Beef with Whole-Grain Mustard and Herb Crust

If ever there is a time of year to treat your family to a whole beef tenderloin, Christmas is it. Don't be
intimidated by the size of the roast or the precise cooking times. A fillet of beef is easy to cook as long as you have a meat thermometer handy. Be sure to let the meat rest for at least 15 minutes before slicing to allow the juices and flavors to set.

1/4 cup whole-grain mustard
3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbs dried savory, finely crumbled
1 Tbs dried thyme, finely crumbled
1 whole filet of beef (7 to 8 lb. untrimmed or 5 to 6 lb. trimmed)
Vegetable oil for sautéing
Coarse salt
Freshly ground black pepper

1. In a small bowl, mix together the mustard, olive oil, savory, and thyme.

2. Trim the meat of all excess fat and silverskin. Cut the filet in half to make two equal pieces about 7 inches long. You’ll have one piece with the broad double-pieced butt portion and a thinner piece that tapers to a small tip. Tuck the tapered tip under and tie with twine to fashion two equally thick roasts. Tie each roast at 2-inch intervals.

3. Heat the oven to 450 degrees F. Heat a heavy-duty roasting pan or large Dutch oven or skillet over medium-high heat. Pour in enough vegetable oil to just cover the bottom of the pan. Pat the filets dry, salt them generously, and lay them in the pan; cook without disturbing them until the bottoms are a rich brown. Turn the beef and sear the other sides. It will take about 4 min. per side (there are three or four sides per roast) to get a good sear.

4. When the filets are seared, transfer them to a cutting board, brush them with the mustard and herb mix, and then generously grind fresh pepper over them. Put a rack in the roasting pan, lay the meat on the rack, and roast until the internal temperature reaches 120 degrees F for medium rare, about 20 min. (Check after 15 min.; roasting time will vary depending on searing time.) Remove the filets from the oven and let them rest in the warm spot for at least 15 min. before slicing. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Servings: 10

Source: Fine Cooking

Have a great day

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Friday, Mandarin, Kelp, Supper,

I'm really in the wars lately, I was just heading up the hallway to put on my coat and damned me if my hip (replaced one) didn't give out and I could hardly move.  Decided couldn't go to lunch. Staggered back into computer room to email ladydog. Came out and my hip was perfect. So I then phoned her and used her husband's number instead. Got her just having got out of the shower and cancelled my previous message. What a life I am leading. I persuaded Matt to bring his walker and cross the garage with me, just in case, but everything seems OK although a tad sore.

Got to the restaurant to discover the parking lot was crowded, however, managed to get a Wheel
Chair Spot. Couldn't get our usual table because there was a huge party (Christmas?) in that room so we were shown to a different part of the restaurant. I complained because the table was "round the corner" and a longish walk to the buffet tables, particularly for Matt, the hostess wasn't too happy but one of the waiters who has been there for years, said give them what they want, satisfy the customer or words to that effect. Eventually ended up in another room and still a bit of a walk, but not as bad as the first. I phoned ladydog to tell her where we were seated. Then got my soup, hot and sour of course, yummy. Eventually ladydog arrived carrying a flowering Amaryllis. It had started flowering early apparently so she brought me my Christmas gift sooner than intended. Lovely isn't it? I've never had an Amarylis before, always admired them.

Matt had forgotten it was a buffet so we dragged him off to get his food. I then did a plate for me with lots of mussels on, they are delicious and I always eat some. Only trouble is the shells take up a lot of room. I did get some kelp salad on my plate though, I love that stuff. Dunno why I don't buy some, there is an oriental store which sells it.

I have just been doing some Spanish, think I have finally sorted out the two forms of "to be". Don't know if I ever knew them before. One is permanent ( I am Jo), the other impermanent (I am angry). However, Japanese is much more difficult because they use the same word but the intonation conveys different meanings. Western ears are not usually tuned to such nuances. Tried to learn it once, managed a few phrases here and there but that was it. More interesting learning languages from countries you know. At one time I knew a section of Spain extremely well. Also I have a very good friend in Mexico and it would be fun to write to her in her own language. Mind you her English is excellent. I don't anticipate being able to get that good in Spanish. Ain't got long enough!

Never been so stuffed as I was today after Chinese food. Usually it dissipates quickly in my experience, but not today. I couldn't have been less interested in supper. Luckily I had planned coconut shrimp so all I had to do was put them in the air fryer and open a packet of sauce. I gave Matt an bunch of grape tomatoes and then two of my shrimp (unheard of). Poor soul didn't even get dessert, I completely forgot it. Even now, at 11 p.m., I still feel full. Most unusual. Forgot to mention, in passing, I mentioned it was ladydog's birthday when being seated. Before we left they brought her a cupcake with a candle and we all sang Happy Birthday much to her embarrassment.

So, being an idiot, I set off to find a recipe to share. I went to my email programme and received the draft of Liz Seckman's latest book. I assured her I would not start reading straight away, so what do I do, get started reading. Stopped myself and closed down the PC. As I was doing so, I remembered I hadn't chosen a recipe, duuh. I am typing on my laptop and I don't have any recipes here. Actually, just remembered I have a couple. Hm, I'd forgotten this recipe, wonder if I have all the ingredients for supper tomorrow.

Crispy Lamb With Cumin, Scallions and Red Chiles

The Dongbei restaurant in Queens, makes an elegant, tender version of a popular Dongbei stir-fry of lamb with dried chilies, made fragrant and crunchy with cumin seeds — a legacy of the nomadic Mongols who long ruled Central Asia, carrying spices on horseback along with their arrows. Lamb is considered a Northern taste and excessively “strong” by many Chinese cooks; it is always cooked with powerful aromatics, like chili peppers and garlic, to subdue it.

1 Tbs egg white
1 Tbs rice wine or dry sherry
2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp salt, more to taste
½ tsp black pepper
1 lb boneless leg of lamb or lamb shoulder, cut into strips about 1/2 inch by 2 inches
3 Tbs vegetable oil
2 Tbs cumin seeds, lightly cracked in a mortar or grinder
2 Tbs whole dried red chile peppers, about 2 inches long
4 scallions, white and green parts only, cut on diagonal into 1-inch lengths
sesame oil for seasoning

1. In a bowl combine egg white, wine, cornstarch, salt and pepper. Add lamb and set aside to marinate 1 hour.

2. Heat a large wok or skillet over high heat until a drop of water sizzles on contact. Swirl half the oil into wok and carefully add lamb, spreading it in a single layer. Let sear a moment, then stir-fry briskly just until lamb is no longer pink. Transfer to a plate. (If your wok is not large enough to hold all the lamb, do this in 2 batches, using extra oil.)

3. Swirl remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil into empty wok, add cumin seeds and chiles and stir-fry a few seconds until cumin seeds start to pop. Press chiles against sides of wok to char their skins.

4. Add scallions and stir-fry 1 minute. Then return lamb to wok and stir-fry 1 to 2 minutes more until lamb is cooked through. Turn off heat, sprinkle with salt and drops of sesame oil, and serve immediately.

Source: The New York Times

Have a great day

Friday, November 22, 2019

Unwell Again, Mandarin, Boo-Boo Plants, Cooking

Would you believe, having got over my stint with IBS, I then felt sick and dizzy most of the day. No idea why. I had a touch of a headache too and wondered if I was heading for a migraine but didn't thank goodness. Boring. So, of course, having intended to go bowling this afternoon for a while, I ended up sleeping the time away. Missed the exercise classes too this week. Will have to make up for it next week.

Friday we are going to lunch at Mandarin with ladydog for her birthday. Haven't been there for quite a while - think I mentioned. Had some onion soup today which was tasteless so am looking forward to Mandarin's Hot and Sour Soup. It is the best I have ever tasted.

By the way, I have been keeping up with my Spanish every day. Seem to end up doing it late at night.

Have you come across Boo-Boo Plants? I got an ad from them, in the mail I think. Looked them up today, they are cute. Thinking of giving some as presents. On their website you can see more of these tiny plants in their miniature terrariums.

Now I will have to do my chicken breasts dump and go recipe. Of course, we don't have Target any more (didn't catch on round here) so I just use a Barbecue sauce I can get here. I also used peppers and onions this time. We both enjoyed it and have leftovers for another day. This time I did rice, next time I may well to cauliflower rice. It is so very easy.


4-6 Boneless Chicken Breasts (mine were still frozen!)
1 Bottle Archer Farms Hawaiian Style Barbecue Sauce (from Target)
1 20 oz can Pineapple Chunks (do not drain - you need the juice so it will pressurize!)

1. Place frozen chicken breasts in the Instant Pot and cover with sauce. Empty can of pineapple chunks and juice on top. Close the lid and turn the knob to SEALING.

2. Set the timer to 25 minutes if your chicken is frozen or 18 if you chicken is thawed.

3. When it is done, turn the knob to VENTING. When the pressure is released, take the lid off.

4. Shred chicken and return to the Instant Pot so the chicken will be well coated with sauce. Serve over rice or cauliflower rice.

5. Sometimes I also throw in a chopped up green pepper and chopped onion . . . it tastes good with or without it.

 Source: Six Sisters

Have a great day

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Off Colour, Birthday Lunch, Family Tree, Supper,

Sorry no blog yesterday, was a tad under the weather and didn't feel like it. Not too much better this morning, my IBS playing me up I guess. As I said to my cleaner today, I now know what a pain in the ass is really like. I had to go to the grocery store in the middle of it all this morning. However, things were improved somewhat by then. The cleaner came and took the groceries upstairs for me. She is very good. At least the water wasn't turned off this morning leaving us with wet sheets. I used to have lots of sheets but they gradually wore out in one way or another and I have never bothered to buy more. When we had the Mobile Home in NC (before we moved down there) we had sheets there as well as in Canada. Amazing how we go through so many. Hadn't thought about that before.

I didn't make it to exercise class today either, not up to it. Won't get to go Friday either. Taking ladydog out for lunch as it's her 70th birthday on Saturday. A milestone. At this rate she might catch up with me! We are going to Mandarin where we haven't been for some weeks. Not since our other friends had their accident.

By the way, I received my family tree. It came in a long tube and I had no idea what it was. It is a large roll of paper. One thing I discovered was why my father was named Geoffrey Frederick Charles, he had an ancestor who's name was Frederick Charles. I need to study it a bit more. I always believed we had Danish ancestry. Nothing to tell us  that on this tree. I also believed one of my ancestors wed a Jewish woman from Portugal. These may only be stories of course, but our family name - Duttson - could well have been Duttsen. Wish I were famous I could go on "Find Your Roots" and they could do research for us.

Been having lousy dull weather the last couple of days, however this afternoon the sun is popping in and out. So much better. I am busy cleaning the coffee pot and then I am going to have a nap.

We had samosas for supper - no not home made, but they are delicious and so easy to cook in the air fryer. For a dipping sauce I decided to use the Gochujang. Worked very well. I also  made a Triple Spiced Cole Slaw. Not a pasta in sight. Have you noticed just how many recipes there are using one form of pasta or another. Not helpful if one doesn't want to gain weight. Especially in my case, I always enjoy pasta. I must have Italian blood in me or something.

This can obviously be served with pasta or rice, but I think I would just do vegetables. I don't use my air fryer nearly enough, especially since I got the Instant Pot.

Brazilian Chicken

Impress your friends and family with this delicious Brazilian Chicken recipe! Only you will know
how easy this air fryer chicken dish is!

1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp dried oregano leaves
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp black peppercorns
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 cup lime juice
2 Tbs oil
1.5 lbs chicken drumsticks

1. In a clean coffee grinder, blend together the cumin, oregano, parsley, turmeric, kosher salt, coriander seeds, peppercorns and cayenne pepper.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the ground spices with the lemon juice and oil. Add the chicken drumsticks and turn them, coating well with the marinade. Allow the chicken o marinade for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours in the refrigerator.

3. When you are ready to cook, place the chicken legs into the air fryer basket, skin side up.

4. Set your air fryer to 390°F for 20-25 minutes for meaty chicken legs. Halfway through, flip the chicken legs over.

5. Use a meat thermometer to ensure that the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165°F. Remove and serve with plenty of napkins.

Servings: 4

Source: TwoSleevers

Have a great day

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Bowling, Our Monday, Orkin Men

Sorry, but despite all the good wishes, I didn't bowl that well, not as appallingly badly as last time and at least I did get a few strikes and spares. I still dropped 1 point in my average which was a lot better than before. However, I enjoyed myself today. So did Matt, he had an excellent first game, 179. He used to be a very good bowler, so I guess this was shades of the past. Bowling against a team with a woman who hadn't ever bowled before this season. She is a hoot and we all had lots of laughs with her, especially when she got a mark. She was flabbergasted every time. Was quite funny. Was bowling against a friend who happens to have exactly the same bowling balls as I do. As I keep telling her, I hate bowling with her. Spend time figuring out who's balls are which. I did discover one big difference, they had been in her car and my hands froze every time I picked one up.

Forgot to mention, it was snowing this morning, or trying to. very light and almost rain. Got me worried at first.

After bowling, went to get some expensive bananas, well I went in for bananas and ended spending $44. Well, I replaced the flank steak and got some coconut shrimp - and I got bananas!!

Had to use up some peppers tonight, my excuse to make Sausages and Peppers in the Instant Pot. My current favourite dish I think. However, I do have things in my freezer I need to use.

The Orkin men are coming back in the morning so will have to get cracking. I hadn't even had breakfast when they came last time. We had overslept.

I thought this looked scrumptious - haven't made it yet, but I will.

Cauliflower Curry

This coconut-infused curry tastes fresh yet the flavors keep descending. And it’s endlessly variable:
swap in green beans, eggplant, carrots, potatoes or a mix for the cauliflower.

1 onion, chopped
3 small plum tomatoes
3 large garlic cloves
1 2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup coconut oil
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 head of cauliflower (1 1/2 pounds), cut into florets
1 long Indian green chile or Thai bird chile, sliced, plus more for serving
Kosher salt Pepper
Steamed basmati rice, plain yogurt, and lime pickle, for serving

1. In a food processor, pulse the onion, tomatoes, garlic, and ginger until a paste forms. In a large, deep skillet, heat the oil. Add the onion paste, and cook over moderately high heat,

2. stirring often, until the paste is thickened, about 10 minutes.

3. Add the garam masala and turmeric, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the cauliflower, chile, and 2 cups of water. Season generously with salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over moderately low heat until the cauliflower is just tender, about 10 minutes. Serve with rice, yogurt, lime pickle, and sliced chiles.

Servings: 4

Source: Food and Wine

Have a great day

Monday, November 18, 2019

Book Review, Princess Margaret, Bowling, Cooking,

You Beneath Your SkinYou Beneath Your Skin by Damyanti Biswas
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Horrifying. But at the same time a gripping story. From my perspective, the ending was unresolved, but then so was Gone with the Wind. I certainly would never want to go to Delhi. There is an abundance of corruption and I want to see people get their comeuppance, but that is only my feeling. The thought that a charity is needed for people, mainly women, who have acid thrown in their faces is also horrifying. Is Delhi worse than our western cities? I don't know. I blindly believe our society is more civilised, but is it? I highly recommend this book for two reasons, an excellent read and to support the charities Damyanti has chosen to donate the proceeds to, both of which assist women, the first, those who have acid thrown in their faces. The second underprivileged children. The Chanv Foundation and Project Why.

I'm not all that good at this book reviewing business.

Just watched a documentary about Princess Margaret. Most of her story occurred whilst we still lived in England although it appears some of the later relationships began just as we were emigrating. I wondered why I didn't remember anything about it. She certainly led a very different life from the rest of the royal family at the time although since her day, things have loosened up considerably. In a way she had a hard life, she was neither fish nor fowl as it were. It was an interesting documentary though.

Weather permitting we are, of course, bowling on Monday afternoon. I do hope I do better than the last couple of times. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Basically a quiet weekend and other than a bit of cooking, we didn't do much at all. Saturday I did a Pot Roast Flank Steak - cooked it before but this time I gave it less time and it wasn't overdone. It was delicious. Mind you, there is no way it came out pink. I used white wine vinegar too, don't have Apple Cider Vinegar.

 Instant Pot Marinated Flank Steak, Dump and Go Dinner

1 lbs Flank Steak
1/4 cups Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cups Olive Oil
2 Tbs Onion Soup Mix, Dried

1. Set Instant Pot to sauté.

2. Add flank steak and brown on each side.

3. Add vinegar, Worcestershire, olive oil and onion soup mix.

4. Lock cover into place and seal steam nozzle.

5. Cook on high pressure for 25 minutes.

6. Naturally release pressure for 5 minutes and quick release remaining pressure.

7. I poured off as much oil as I could to use the juices for gravy.

Servings: 2

 Source: Once a Month Meals

Have a great day

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Urologist, Service Ontario, Landlord letters, Cooking,

As I said, there was an appointment with the urologist, turned out it was for me and after a  bit of grousing from me, he changed one of my pills and I have to go back again in January for a test etc. Matt was almost disappointed he wasn't supposed to see the doc. On the way back, we dropped in for some gin for himself, I don't touch the stuff, and as I was close to the pharmacy, I phoned to make sure they had the prescription, if not I had a copy of it. They did so I didn't have to do the long walk to the back of the store. I hate that, sick people have to walk the furthest.

Afterwards, went to Service Ontario to order a new health card for Matt. Mind you his current one doesn't expire til next February, but... we had already been sent renewal forms. Went in and I approached one of the counters and explained about Matt and she dealt with us straight away. She also suggested he should have an ID card as he no longer has a driver's license. They copped me for another $35. Can't go in there without paying that amount of money. However, it will be a good thing for him to have. Had to have two pix taken, one for his health card and another for the ID. There was a long line up, people must have been wondering why we got attended to before them.

Earlier in the day, we got two letters shoved under the door by the super, I assume, one telling us that the ant people will be coming again next Tuesday. Didn't realise they were called Pharaoh ants. They attached a letter explaining about them and asking us not to kill the ants but leave them to go feed on the "stuff" they had put down so they can go feed it to their queen. Here you are your majesty, nice drop of poison for you. Only trouble is, one sees them on the kitchen counter and automatically want to end their lives. Or I do. However, I refrained. It says they feed on sweets and proteins (fat) and ask us to keep our counters, etc. spotlessly clean so they will eat the baits they have put down.

Also had another letter from the landlords about Pre-Authorised Debit. I have wanted them to get with it and arrange this so that I don't have to write 12 cheques every year, better if they take it direct from the bank, however, there are some rather odd conditions so discussed it with a friend, we were both about to go out though so going to talk about it today.

I made the Ginger Stir Fry with Shrimp and Snow Peas for Friday dinner. It was delicious, but needed a bit more zip. I will spice up the remainder a bit more when we eat it. However, do try it, I think you will enjoy it.

I came across this recipe whilst looking up the Ginger Shrimp and thought it sounded pretty good too. I do like stuff cooked in foil, saves such a lot of clean up.

Garlic Dijon Shrimp and Salmon Foil Packs

Bold and savory garlic dijon shrimp and salmon foil packs are loaded with your favorite seafood and
the most incredible tangy honey dijon sauce. Easy to make with no cleanup!

4 salmon fillets I used skin-off
1/2 lb large shrimp, peeled and de-veined I kept tails on, feel free to remove them before beginning recipe if desired
4 Tbs olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp dried Italian seasoning herbs see note

Garlic Dijon Sauce
8 Tbs butter, melted 1 stick or 1/2 cup
2 Tbs honey
2 Tbs dijon mustard
2 tsp whole grain dijon mustard
3 tsp minced garlic
salt and pepper, to taste I used about 1/8 teaspoon each
1 Tbs fresh chopped dill

1. Prepare 4 12x12 inch pieces of foil and set aside. Drizzle salmon with olive oil, rub over whole surface, then season with salt, pepper, and half of the Italian seasoning dried herbs. Repeat process with the shrimp.

2. To make the sauce, stir together all ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

3. Assemble foil packs by placing salmon in the middle, topped with 3-4 shrimp. Drizzle HALF of the sauce over the shrimp and salmon, RESERVE the other half for using later. Fold foil over the shrimp and salmon and pinch edges to seal closed so no juices leak.

These last two lines should be reversed.

4. Drizzle with the reserved sauce (you may need to microwave it for a few seconds first if the butter has cooled) and top with additional fresh chopped dill if desired and serve.

5. For oven cooking, preheat oven to 450°F - bake 16 to 20 minutes on a cookie sheet.

Servings: 4

Source: |

Have a great day

Friday, November 15, 2019

Lunch. Grocery, Nap, Friday Dinner, Jeopardy, Urologist,

Got to the Red Lobster at lunchtime and walked in to see a face peering at us from one of the window slots and the hostess saying people were waiting for us. I didn't recognise my friend's son at first and was rejecting him as the person we were lunching with. Haven't seen him in 3 or more years. Enjoyed lunch and it was nice to see our friend, haven't seen her in a while either and as she is moving, won't be seeing too much of her in the future. Although, as I said yesterday, maybe we will go to Stratford one of these days. I told her son not to be a stranger now she was moving.

I had placed a small order at the grocery store with things I forgot or didn't realise I needed. You can post a small order so long as it is valued at $30 or more. Popped in to collect that and then whizzed on home. Meant to do some other errands but missed out.

Spent the afternoon fast asleep. Well I was up fairly late last night. Had the remains of our Butter Chicken for supper. Tomorrow I am planning the Gingered Shrimp and Snow Peas which I haven't tried yet. Of course, having been asleep this means I will have to do my Spanish lessons tonight again, what a fool.

Been watching the Jeopardy Tournament of Champions, we are now down to the last two shows. James Holzhauer is a finalist as is the girl who supposedly beat him. Jeopardy James is doing very well in the first half of the match, got my fingers crossed for him.

Just realised we have an appointment with the urologist. No idea whether its for me or for Matt. Guess we will find out. Odd, I normally write it down. Maybe its for both of us.

This looked so good in the picture I couldn't help but post it. Maybe I will try it one of these days or make a simpler version. I do enjoy pork tenderloin.

Stuffed Pork Tenderloins with Bacon and Apple-Riesling Sauce

Debra Whiting, the chef and co-owner of Red Newt Winery Bistro in New York's Finger Lakes, loves
the fresh goat cheese from the local Lively Run Dairy so much that she always works it into her dinner menu. Here, she mixes the cheese with apple, sausage and greens, then stuffs it inside a bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin.

1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup minced onion
1/4 lb pork breakfast sausage, casings removed
1 Granny Smith apple—peeled, cored and cut into 1/3-inch dice
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp chopped thyme
1/2 tsp chopped sage
1/2 cup finely chopped collard greens (2 large leaves, stemmed)
4 oz fresh goat cheese, at room temperature
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 1-pound pork tenderloins
6 slices of bacon

1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 Granny Smith apple—peeled, cored and cut into 1/3-inch dice
3/4 cup apple cider
1/2 cup dry Riesling
1/4 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth
1/2 tsp chopped sage
1/2 tsp chopped thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

1. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the sausage and cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add the apple, garlic, thyme and sage and cook until the apple just begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Stir in the collard greens and cook until wilted, about 2 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and let cool to room temperature. Mix in the goat cheese and season the stuffing with salt and pepper.

2. Light a grill. Using a long, thin knife and beginning at a thick end, cut a 1-inch-wide pocket through the center of each pork tenderloin; use the handle of a wooden spoon to widen the pocket if necessary. Fill the pork tenderloins with the stuffing, poking it in with the wooden spoon. Season the tenderloins with salt and pepper and wrap the bacon strips securely around them; try to cover any exposed stuffing with the bacon.

3. Grill the pork tenderloins over moderately high heat, turning four times, until browned on every side, about 25 minutes, or the internal temperature reaches 140°. Transfer the pork tenderloins to a cutting board, cover tightly with foil and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes.

4. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil. Add the garlic and cook over moderate heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the apple, cider, Riesling, chicken stock, sage and thyme and simmer until the apple softens, about 7 minutes. Transfer the contents of the saucepan to a blender and puree until smooth. Strain the sauce back into the saucepan and boil until it coats the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Yield: 4

Author: Debra Whiting
Source: Food and Wine

Have a great day

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Card, Exercises, Stratford, Words for Wednesday,

Got our first Christmas Card today, a tad early, and I understand from it that I will be receiving a copy of my family tree at a later date and it is 60 pages!! It seems to have been compiled by a relative of mine who lives in Australia. I knew of his existence and that he had been working on the tree, but 60 pages! I guess he sent it to my cousin in England who is sending it to me.

Went to exercise class this afternoon, didn't fall asleep like I did on Monday. No bowling, no exercise either. Despite the inclement weather (I love that word), our instructor did turn up even if I didn't. Only three of us today, Wednesday is always quiet. One of the women is moving on Dec. 14, going into a retirement home, so Wednesday is going to be even shorter of participants. Wonder if they will end up cancelling the class. I hope not.

Today, Thursday, we are meeting a friend for lunch. She is moving to Stratford which is not that far away, but I am unlikely to see her as we don't go to Stratford - in fact have only been once as far as I recall in the 40 some years we have lived in Canada. The reason being that it is a town devoted to Shakespeare in particular and theatre in general and Matt has never been very interested in theatre for some reason. I went once with a friend, many, many years ago, and watched Twelfth Night sitting on the most uncomfortable seats I have ever encountered in a theatre. So bad in fact that it ruined my enjoyment of the play. I remember the seats more than I remember the performance. A very pretty town though. I would like to go back. Maybe I will now my friend is moving there. Of course the river running  through it is called the Avon. There are several theatres there.

Words for Wednesday as found in Elephant's Child - to add insult to injury it is already past my bedtime but now I have decided to try a small challenge. Well, nothing venturedthe object is to use one or both selections in your writing which I have now done. Maybe I will get  better as time goes by. You should be so lucky.

This is a somewhat different version of tomato soup and sounds pretty good to me. They  mention the benefits of cherry tomatoes, I wonder if that also applies to grape tomatoes which is what I buy. They are so much sweeter.

Roasted Tomato Soup

A pot of soup is the ultimate comfort food when the weather turns cold.  Chase away the November blues with our savoury roasted tomato soup recipe.  Warm and hearty, this soup is loaded with delicious, nutritious readily available ingredients.

Tomatoes are considered a superfood! This nutrient-rich plant food offers a range of benefits including: heart health, maintenance of healthy blood pressure, reduction of glucose in people with diabetes and, since they contain carotenoids such as lutein, they can help protect your eyes against the
risk of light-induced damages.

Did you know? Cherry tomatoes have a higher content of beta carotene than other tomatoes. Our bodies convert beta carotene into vitamin A which protects the cornea, or the surface of the eye.

2 ½ lbs fresh tomatoes, cored and halved (vine or cherry tomatoes)
6 to 8 garlic cloves, peeled
2 yellow onions, sliced
4 Tbs of olive oil
4 cups chicken broth (choose to make it vegetarian by using vegetable broth)
Freshly ground salt and pepper
Optional: add a splash of heavy cream and basil for a richer flavour

1. Preheat the oven to 450°F

2. Place the halved tomatoes, garlic and onions on a baking sheet. Drizzle the olive oil and generously season with salt and pepper. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, or until caramelized.

3. Remove the tomatoes, garlic and onions and add them to a stock pot with the broth. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes.

4. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until the consistency is smooth.

5. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Yield: 4 to 6

Source: CARP Lifestyle

Have a great day

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Camera, Shopping, Gochujang,

It's been an absolutely gorgeous day today. The park is glistening white in the sunshine. Tried to take a pic with my phone, but it looked somewhat grey and white. My camera is kaput, did I mention that before? The cover on the battery housing got broken, not sure how, but there is nobody who will or can repair it and I tried buying the cover on line, no luck. So, reluctantly, I have just ditched it. It has
taken me quite a few weeks to accept that I must throw it away. In fact, I need to throw Matt's camera away too, it is/was an excellent camera - for Matt when he was a keen photographer - but he preferred to load film and nobody uses film any more as far as I know. Matt preferred it, said he got better pix etc. he used to be very knowledgeable and interested. Not now. I just found the same camera as my old one at  - funnily enough didn't have one - so have ordered it. It is costing me roughly $60 - I don't remember what I paid for my original one - but it is a great little camera for camera idiots like me - virtually point and shoot. Thinking about it today, my original one must be around 30 years old so I guess it doesn't owe me anything but it tees me off to have to throw it away for something so minor yet nevertheless critical.

I have just been to the store with the CSC van. One of the drivers I know best. We talk cooking and also about his kids who live up north. One in the North West Territories which is really back and beyond.

I am now the proud possessor of Gochujang Sauce which I was recommended to use in chili so, as we have leftover chili from last night, Gochujang it will get. Actually, have come across that in several different recipes. Although I probably won't find any now. I tried some of it in the chili tonight, put in about 1 Tbs but didn't notice a lot of taste difference, guess I need to find recipes and see how much one is supposed to us - unless anyone already knows, do you?

I'm always looking for vegetable stuff. A lot of what I find doesn't particularly appeal to me, but this does. Reading the distructions instructions it seems to me the first part could easily be done in the air fryer. It is certainly what I will try.

Roasted Aloo Gobi (Potatoes and Cauliflower)

This classic potato-and-cauliflower dish, ubiquitous on Indian restaurant menus, makes for a great
make-ahead party dish. You can pre-roast the vegetables, and then whenever you’re ready, throw them in the pan with your spices and onions to finish the dish in 15 minutes.

2 medium russet potatoes, cut into 2"-long sticks
1 medium head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
5 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp ground turmeric
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 Tbs thinly sliced ginger
pinch of asafetida (optional, but really great)
pinch of red chili powder
1 tsp (or more) kosher salt
1 Tbs (or more) fresh lime juice
½ cup chopped cilantro leaves with tender stems

1. Preheat oven to 400°. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Toss potatoes and cauliflower with 3 Tbsp. oil on prepared sheet. Spread in an even layer and roast, tossing once halfway through, until cauliflower and potatoes are browned and slightly crisped, about 30 minutes. Let cool.

2. Meanwhile, heat remaining 2 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium-high until it begins to shimmer. Add cumin and cook, stirring frequently, until they turn a medium shade of brown, about 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium and swirl in turmeric. Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, until translucent, 4–6 minutes. Add ginger, asafetida (if using), and chili powder and cook, stirring, until heated through and well combined, about 1 minute longer.

3. Stir in roasted potatoes and cauliflower, including any charred bits from the foil, and gently mix (don’t overmix, or the cauliflower will fall apart). Add salt and cook, tossing occasionally, until potatoes and cauliflower are tender (but not soggy!), 5–6 minutes. Remove from heat and add lime juice. Taste and add more lime juice or salt, if needed.

4. Transfer potatoes and cauliflower to a platter. Top with cilantro.

Servings: 4

Source: Bon Appérit

Have a great day

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Snow, Memorial Day, Crock Pot, Supper

Woke up to snow although it didn't seem to be much but it continued to snow and snow, a very light but continuous fall. In the end the roads, locally, where white as anything and Matt was quite certain we shouldn't go bowling. He does seem to get in a tizz about driving in the snow, particularly because of other drivers. I was actually not feeling all that brilliant in the morning anyway, so we didn't go. Not the only ones, about 10 people didn't turn up we were told.

Poor ladydog, she belongs to a band (actually a couple of them), plays the French horn, and they were due to play in a local township for Memorial Day at their cenotaph. Outside of course, I have no doubt she froze as it would have snowed right through the time she was outside.

Later in the afternoon, one of the owners of the bowling alley called to pick up my crock pot for his son. I was glad to give it to someone we know. Apparently son and girlfriend work different shifts so it will be great for them to come home to a hot meal. He told us this morning there had been an idiot driving at 50 mph around a roundabout in the snow.

Made chili in my Instant Pot - so easy - and we enjoyed it for supper. Then, after Jeopardy we watched The Dirty Dozen which is a favourite movie of mine. Have you seen it, if not you should.

Easy Instant Pot Chili

Cook time
Total time
This Instant Pot chili is amazing! Just dump all the ingredients in the Instant Pot and have this mouthwatering chili for dinner 25 minutes later! EASIEST CHILI EVER!
Recipe type: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6 servings
  • 1 lb ground beef or turkey
  • 2 cans (15 oz each) black or pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (14 oz) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1½ tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ cup water
  1. Put all ingredients except water in the Instant Pot. Mix with a spoon until the meat is broken up and all ingredients are combined.
  2. With a spoon, make a well in the middle of the meat mixture so the bottom of the pot is exposed, and pour ½ cup of water there.
  3. Close the Instant Pot and turn the valve to a Sealing position.
  4. Press the "Pressure Cook" or "Manual" button and set the time to 20 minutes on High pressure.
  5. When the Instant Pot is done cooking, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes, then quick release (QR) the remaining steam.
If using frozen ground meat, dump all ingredients in the Instant Pot and skip the step of mixing them (since you can't mix a frozen solid block of meat). Add 5 minutes to the cooking time. After the chili is cooked, break up the meat into small chunks and mix everything together.

Have a great day