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OT: What tickles your taste buds?

13 years ago

Since you make the stuff that tickles your taste buds in the kitchen, I figured this would be an OK place to post this ;)

I just finished my version of Dal Makhani. My mouth is burning SO good! I LOVE Indian food! It's like it was created JUST FOR ME! I love their exotic spices & the way they combine them.

What we Americans call 'curry' is such a sad, sad thing. That yellow stuff (turmeric) in the cans at the local supermarket is just one of their spices. YOU MUST discover curry in its entirety. A good starting place is a spice house called Penzeys. Their print catalog is a primer on all things spices & herbs. I'll link them below.

Dal Makhani uses "Beluga" Black Lentils that are so luscious...I just discovered them. The gal at the local health food store didn't even know they existed. I ordered some...I fell in love. They retain their texture unlike some lentils. They call them 'Beluga' because they are black and shiny. Some Indian recipes combine light red kidney beans in the recipe. That's the way I like them. They are more expensive than other lentils but oh, so worth it! :)

My journey started with a healthy packaged food called "Tasty Bite". My favorite of theirs is called "Madras Lentils" which is basically Dal Makhani, a toned-down version of what I like but still good. I was determined to find a recipe online so I could make my own. Buying the packaged food was kinda spendy & it goes against my frugal nature. We have 100's of pounds of grains, legumes, etc. and I need to add those luscious black lentils to my stock :)

Anyway...I found several recipes and combined, experimented until I came up with the one I like for now. I'm always trying to evolve so I won't get bored so here is the current favorite:

CREAMY SPICED BLACK LENTILS (Dal Makhani)

This recipe is for a 5½ to 6½-quart Crockpot (for a smaller Crockpot, just halve recipe):

3 cups Black lentils (picked through & washed)

1 cup Light Red Kidney beans (picked through & washed)

Add lentils & beans to Crockpot

Dry fry following spices…(heat skillet over medium high heat & ‘dry fry’ for a minute or so stirring constantly. This ‘blooms’ the volatile oils in the spices which greatly add to their flavors. Remove from heat immediately. This is different from frying in oil…the heat can get much hotter in dry frying so more flavor comes out.

1½ teaspoons ground cumin

1 Tablespoon coriander

2 teaspoons Garam Masala

1 Tablespoon Red Chili powder

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Remove from heat & empty spices into Crockpot.

Add to Crockpot:

2 to 8 Tablespoons butter (according to your taste) Indian cooking calls for “ghee” which is clarified butter �" I just don’t take the time to do it!

½ cup Half & Half (or you can use full cream which is more traditional)

12 cups water (use a little less if you want a thicker dal)

2 cans chopped green chilies

4” piece ginger (or 4 teaspoons ginger powder) guess which one I use? ;)

2 cloves garlic (or garlic powder)

1 Tablespoon Cholula Sauce (you can also use Sriracha Sauce (‘Rooster Sauce’). My addition.

1 medium red or yellow onion, diced (or onion powder). You can also add dehydrated minced, toasted onions. I get mine from Penzeys or My Spice Sage. I live in a remote Alaska town so I don’t have a local ready supply of a lot of ingredients.

1/3 cup Red Curry Paste (use less if you want less heat) More traditional recipes call for the whole pepper such as, Thai, Serrano & cayenne chilies…I just like easy

Tomato paste (about ¼ cup)

Freshly-ground black pepper to taste

1 teaspoon Asafoetida (Optional) This spice is used as a digestive aid, in food as a condiment and in pickles. Its odor, when uncooked, is so strong it must be stored in airtight containers; otherwise, the aroma will contaminate other spices stored nearby. However, its odor and flavor become much milder and more pleasant upon heating in oil or ghee, acquiring a taste and aroma reminiscent of sautéed onion and garlic. Asafoetida reduces the growth of indigenous microflora in the gut, reducing flatulence. Wikipedia

Cook on high for 8 hours.

Add at end:

Salt - 2 Tablespoons, or to taste

Add some acid. I add juice from 2 fresh limes but you can use anything you want. My addition. I’m a lime freak 

For each serving, garnish with cilantro & a splash of rich cream.

You can also serve it alongside Classic Saffron Rice

CLASSIC SAFFRON RICE

2 cups long-grain white rice (I use Basmati)

4 cups water or chicken broth

2 Tablespoons butter (real)

2 Tablespoons minced onion (optional)

2 small pinches of Saffron, crumbled (not powdered)

1 teaspoon salt

For regular Class Rice, omit the saffron.

Place butter and minced onion in heavy 3-quart saucepan. Sauté over medium heat until onion is transparent. Add rice and sauté an additional 2-3 minutes or until grains look translucent. Add water & saffron; bring to rolling boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until liquid is absorbed, about 18 minutes.

NOW...what tickles YOUR taste buds? :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Currys

Comments (47)

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Since you make the stuff that tickles your taste buds in the kitchen, I figured this would be an OK place to post this ;)

    I just finished my version of Dal Makhani. My mouth is burning SO good! I LOVE Indian food! It's like it was created JUST FOR ME! I love their exotic spices & the way they combine them.

    What we Americans call 'curry' is such a sad, sad thing. That yellow stuff (turmeric) in the cans at the local supermarket is just one of their spices. YOU MUST discover curry in its entirety. A good starting place is a spice house called Penzeys. Their print catalog is a primer on all things spices & herbs. I'll link them below.

    Dal Makhani uses "Beluga" Black Lentils that are so luscious...I just discovered them. The gal at the local health food store didn't even know they existed. I ordered some...I fell in love. They retain their texture unlike some lentils. They call them 'Beluga' because they are black and shiny. Some Indian recipes combine light red kidney beans in the recipe. That's the way I like them. They are more expensive than other lentils but oh, so worth it! :)

    My journey started with a healthy packaged food called "Tasty Bite". My favorite of theirs is called "Madras Lentils" which is basically Dal Makhani, a toned-down version of what I like but still good. I was determined to find a recipe online so I could make my own. Buying the packaged food was kinda spendy & it goes against my frugal nature. We have 100's of pounds of grains, legumes, etc. and I need to add those luscious black lentils to my stock :)

    Anyway...I found several recipes and combined, experimented until I came up with the one I like for now. I'm always trying to evolve so I won't get bored so here is the current favorite:

    CREAMY SPICED BLACK LENTILS (Dal Makhani)

    This recipe is for a 5 1/2 to 6 1/2 quart Crockpot (for a smaller Crockpot, just halve recipe):

    3 cups Black lentils (picked through & washed)
    1 cup Light Red Kidney beans (picked through & washed)

    Add lentils & beans to Crockpot

    Dry fry following spices (heat skillet over medium high heat & dry fry for a minute or so stirring constantly. This blooms the volatile oils in the spices which greatly add to their flavors. Remove from heat immediately. This is different from frying in oil, the heat can get much hotter in dry frying so more flavor comes out.

    1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
    1 Tablespoon coriander
    2 teaspoons Garam Masala
    1 Tablespoon Red Chili powder
    1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

    Remove from heat & empty spices into Crockpot.

    Add to Crockpot:

    2 to 8 Tablespoons butter (according to your taste) Indian cooking calls for ghee which is clarified butter, I just dont take the time to do it!

    One half cup Half & Half (or you can use full cream which is more traditional)

    12 cups water (use a little less if you want a thicker dal)
    2 cans chopped green chilies
    4 inch piece ginger (or 4 teaspoons ginger powder) guess which one I use? ;)
    2 cloves garlic (or garlic powder)
    1 Tablespoon Cholula Sauce (you can also use Sriracha Sauce (Rooster Sauce). My addition.

    1 medium red or yellow onion, diced (or onion powder). You can also add dehydrated minced, toasted onions. I get mine from Penzeys or My Spice Sage. I live in a remote Alaska town so I dont have a local ready supply of a lot of ingredients.

    1/3 cup Red Curry Paste (use less if you want less heat) More traditional recipes call for the whole pepper such as, Thai, Serrano & cayenne chilies, I just like easy

    Tomato paste (about 1/4 cup)
    Freshly-ground black pepper to taste

    1 teaspoon Asafoetida (Optional) This spice is used as a digestive aid, in food as a condiment and in pickles. Its odor, when uncooked, is so strong it must be stored in airtight containers; otherwise, the aroma will contaminate other spices stored nearby. However, its odor and flavor become much milder and more pleasant upon heating in oil or ghee, acquiring a taste and aroma reminiscent of sauted onion and garlic. Asafoetida reduces the growth of indigenous microflora in the gut, reducing flatulence. Wikipedia

    Cook on high for 8 hours.

    Add at end:

    Salt - 2 Tablespoons, or to taste

    Add some acid. I add juice from 2 fresh limes but you can use anything you want. My addition. I am a lime freak :)

    For each serving, garnish with cilantro & a splash of rich cream.

    You can also serve it alongside Classic Saffron Rice

    CLASSIC SAFFRON RICE

    2 cups long-grain white rice (I use Basmati)
    4 cups water or chicken broth
    2 Tablespoons butter (real)
    2 Tablespoons minced onion (optional)
    2 small pinches of Saffron, crumbled (not powdered)
    1 teaspoon salt

    For regular Class Rice, omit the saffron.

    Place butter and minced onion in heavy 3-quart saucepan. Saute over medium heat until onion is transparent. Add rice and saute an additional 2-3 minutes or until grains look translucent. Add water & saffron; bring to rolling boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until liquid is absorbed, about 18 minutes.

    NOW...what tickles YOUR taste buds? :)

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I couldn't find the butter, sugar or caffeine in that recipe! If you lived closer I'd ask for a doggie bag.

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  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    pinch_me

    You didn't see the butter? It's at about the 1/3 way down:

    Add to Crockpot:

    2 to 8 Tablespoons butter (according to your taste) Indian cooking calls for ghee which is clarified butter, I just dont take the time to do it!

    Hmmm, well, I guess you'll have to have a piece of pie & coffee for dessert for your sugar & caffeine! :)

    I'm thinking of having it again for dinner...it causes major cravings.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Oh, now I see it. And Half & Half, too! My eye must have skipped some lines.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    You must use the ghee! I also like to add a cinnamon stick and about 6 pods of coriander to each cup of rice; 1/4-1/3 cup raisins are nice if you like your rice sweet.
    You can place the rice in a special pot (I inherited one) and bake it to completion in the oven. The resulting buttery crust is very yum.
    Casey

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    6 cardamom pods, not coriander.
    Me=idiot.
    Casey

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    You've worked magic Melaska. You've tempted me when I feel yucky. :)

    There's about half of Indian food which feels like my soul was created from it, and half which seems to be from another planet. :)

    What does it for me? Just about anything roasted with peaches and onions. Or any good caramelized roast. (We just got in the first peaches! Yeah!!!) Sesame anything. Eggplant when it's been cooked right. Little heirloom tomatoes. Almond essence. Real strawberries. Butter lettuce. Mixed baby lettuces. Artichokes (no butter needed). Petits pois.

    What do I make by the kettle full? Spaghetti sauce. But there's no real recipe. Boil down some roma tomatoes. Add some salt. Saute onions and garlic, then add. Brown some meat, turkey and sausage. Add. Add oregano, basil, parsley, bay leaf, thyme. Pepper. Maybe some tomato paste, maybe a tiny bit of sugar, depending on the tomatoes. And whatever veg is in the fridge (sliced): carrots, squash, green beans, etc. Keep cooking until it turns toe curlingly yummy. Freeze in usable portions.

    You want a real recipe? It's been awhile since I made this. I remember the sauce being super delicious, but then I'm a sucker for anything sesame or almond.

    Lemon Amaretto Gnocchi with Chicken

    Chicken breast (previously cooked)
    gnocchi
    mushrooms
    scallions
    pressed garlic
    yellow bell pepper
    English peas
    baby spinach
    juice of two large but not huge sweet lemons
    Amaretto di Saronno
    chicken stock
    light olive oil
    whisking flour
    mixed peppercorns
    cardamom
    lavender salt

    Saute mushrooms, garlic, scallions and bell pepper in a little oil, add splash of amaretto, one large crystal lavender salt (or to taste).

    Start sauce with tiny bit of oil and flour, large slorp of Amaretto, juice of half lemon. Add flour as needed to thicken and cook to pleasing thickness. Add cardamom and peppercorns, juice of other half of lemon.

    Add peas and juice of half lemon to veg.

    Heat previously cooked chicken in sauce. Boil and drain gnocchi.

    Wilt spinach and add to veg.

    Add gnocchi to chicken. Heat awhile then stir in. Pour over veg and stir. Serve when well blended. Remove all from pot so it won't over cook.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Casey,

    What is it about ghee that is different than melted butter? I've always wanted to taste it but never had a chance. I know the stuff they take out is the milk fats that can burn.

    I'm always mixing up coriander & cardamom. The only thing I have with cinnamon is I can't use too much (especially of the sweeter variety) since I have a sweets aversion. Same with raisins. But, a nice addition for others.

    Do you have some favorite recipes you'd care to share? I'd love to see some!

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I love Indian food, too. I also really like Thai, Vietnamese, real Mexican (tacos de lengua being a favorite - I have two cow tongues in my freezer at the moment!), Ethiopian, Southern, Spanish, Greek, Moroccan, sushi/sashimi... Really, I like just about anything! Even with just our temporary kitchen to work in, we still eat our favorite foods pretty regularly. Tomorrow we're having Korean BBQ pork and stir-fried bok choy and peppers. Thursday is Ethiopian chicken t'ibs (a lemony, rosemary-y, pepper-y, tomato-y chicken stew served over injera - a sourdough flatbread). Next week is chicken tika masala and naan.

    melaska - if you like curry, and you like heat, you should try Ethiopian food (if you haven't already). Berbere, the spice blend that is in nearly everything, has a lot of similar flavors to those found in Indian curry mixes, but with super-intense heat. Mitmita is even hotter. They do a lot of dahl-like dishes - lentils, chickpeas, etc., lots of greens like gomen (collard greens) with cheese (a lot like spinach paneer), and different stews with lamb, chicken, beef, seafood. One of my favorite dishes is potato, cabbage, carrots and onion with lots of turmeric, ginger and garlic.

    Man, I really love food! ;o)

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Pl1log,

    Oh my...you are making my taste buds vibrate! It all sounds so good!

    I love anything roasted, too. Especially onions, potatoes, any veggie, really. With extra-virgin olive oil, and cajun seasonings.

    We eat a LOT of Red Salmon up here. My freezer is packed. So, I've been trying to use it up. Made salmon chowder yesterday.

    What's with all the cooking? I do a lot of bulk cooking but I'm in 'extra' mode since I'll be away from poor hubby for 3 weeks before he comes down to the states. Poor dear, he doesn't cook so I package up home-made meals for him so he can survive. :)

    Yesterday it was the Dal Makhani, today it was Split Pea w/Ham Soup. Tomorrow? I'm running out of containers!

    Do you make your own gnocchi? I've never done it - my daughter has, though. I don't eat much pasta (I know, very sad!) Just a little.

    Lavender salt - now, I've heard of that before so I will have to run off & find me some...hmmm...whooooo has it?

    I discovered a great Italian sauce called "Arrabbiate Sauce" - I had it downstates and scurried on up here to Alaska & found me a recipe online. I'll link it below. I LOVE it. Of course, I use more fresh basil than it calls for (do not use dried!) Click on the link for "Italian Meatballs" toward the end of the recipe if you want meatballs. Yours sauce sounds amazing, too.

    Thanks!

    Here is a link that might be useful: Arrabbiata Sauce

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wow worldmom - quite a palate you have there! What time is dinner??? How did you learn to cook all those different cuisines?

    Oh, I love authentic Mexican food, too. I went to the "Pink Adobe" restaurant in Albuquerque years ago & had an amazing lunch...nothing like the stuff you get at a traditional 'Americanized' Mexican restaurant.

    I've never had Ethiopian food...it sounds like something I'd like. What kind of chilies do they use?

    Found the ingredients for Berbere: sea salt, nutmeg, cloves, fenugreek, ginger, ajowan seeds, coriander, cumin, black pepper, allspice, cardamom, chili pepper. Is that right? Everything in that list is right up my alley.

    You must have quite a system set up if you're able to make all this great food. Thanks for all the ideas...gonna be clicking my little fingers away into the night looking for recipes, ingredients...g'nite world! :)

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Lavender salt isn't really worth buying. Some coarse sea salt or rock salt and a pinch of lavender will get you to the same place.

    Gotta admit that I don't bother to make my own pasta. I can get restaurant quality fresh. I LOVE arrabiatta sauce! More than fra diavolo. (I.e., chilies rather than cayenne, though a lot of recipes rather interchangeably call for dried crushed red pepper flakes, which tends to go bitter because of the seeds.)

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Funny, I was just thinking that I wanted to learn some Indian cooking. My neighbors had us over for such a meal recently, it was great, and I found out where the local Indian markets are, so . . .

    What's a good Indian cookbook? I was excited to find the ''Indian Market Cookbook'' on my shelf, but turns out it is some sort of Southwest adobo food - wrong kind of ''Indian''.

    Meanwhile, here's some recent stuff.

    Red-cooked chicken (Hong Shao Ji) and black rice

    Braised chicken and roasted pineapple

    Pan fried trout and roasted, minced grapes

    Ratatouille in progress

    Salmon, grapefruit vinaigrette, deep fried salmon skin

    I've been trying to eat light and lose weight, hence all the fish.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    pl1log - thanks for the lavender salt advice; by lavender, do you mean the plant itself? I don't have that readily available.

    I've made pasta before but I think I'd need one of those pasta roll out thingies if I were to ever get serious. Nope...not gonna get serious this late in the game being that I rarely eat it.

    John - those are some great photos! I love taking food pics. Yeah...fish is a great way to lose weight. I've drastically changed the way I eat now & Indian food has a lot of flavor that satisfies for sure!

    I'll post a couple pics that I took of foods I make all the time:

    Here's my fresh salsa - it's always in the fridge - cannot ever run out!

    Salsa

    Chili Rellano Puff

    Edamame Salad with Smoked Red Salmon

    Is that smoked salmon in your last pic? That looks really good. Ive never made Ratatouille - have always wanted to. I've never heard of Red-cooked chicken - what makes it red? And, what makes the rice black?

    I'll link a popular Indian cookbook below.

    I just got "The Indian Slow Cooker: 50 Healthy, Easy, Authentic Recipes" http://www.amazon.com/Indian-Slow-Cooker-Healthy-Authentic/dp/1572841117/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1300017431&sr=8-8

    Here is an Amazon list of favorite Indian cookbooks:
    http://www.amazon.com/Best-Indian-Cookbook-Authors-Book/lm/3FGB7TTUP0XUB

    Here's a website: http://www.food-india.com/ Take a trip on Google for lots more.

    Thanks for the pics!

    Here is a link that might be useful: Classic Indian Cooking

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Heavy red wine and a plate of great cheeses. Then good conversation.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Fish sticks, miricle whip, french fries and Heinz ketchup?
    There's not much for cusine here in the boondocks. Nearest McDonalds or Subway is 12 miles away, just for reference on how far I am from ANYWHERE!

    I don't suppose any of you are within a day's driving distance of me :-( I'd come for a free meal if you were. (and no, I don't eat fish sticks.)

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Melaska -

    That is regular salmon, ''lightly cooked''
    I've not made ratatouille before last month, our French exchange student made it for us and after she left I tried a version
    ''Red cooking'' is a traditional method of Chinese cooking that basically means braising in a liquid containing soy sauce. I suppose the food comes out red, with the addition of 3 tbsp of poetic license.
    I don't know what makes the rice black. It is a recent discovery for me. This particular variety is glutinous, also called ''sweet'', black rice.

    I'll go looking for those cookbooks, thanks! I'll also try the salmon-edamame salad, that looks tasty.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    FWIW, I think that clarified butter (ghee) has any remaining proteins and sugars rendered out(leftover whey), leaving only the fat.
    Casey

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I'm like pinch me, in the boondocks, and being in Canada I can't even get spices by mail from Penzeys, or sweet rice flour from Amazon.com; the nearest McDonalds, and Tim Horton's for that matter, are 40 miles away (we never go to either...). So I was very happy just recently to find a recipe for "emergency kimchi", which uses regular vs. Napa cabbage (unheard of at the one supermarket in the nearest town), no sweet rice flour, etc.

    www.maangchi.com/recipe/yangbaechu-kimchi

    Lots of other great Korean recipes at the website too.

    A few other things that tickle my taste buds,

    * homemade thin-crust pizza, with pepperoni brought home last month from Zabar's in NYC. That was dinner last night.

    * roast chicken using one of the organic chickens we raise, with roasted root vegetables from the garden

    But I am really looking forward to being able to make kimchi here on the prairies!

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Unfortunately, with DH out of town and me acting as the GC on our whole house reno with a week of he!! due to a horribly messed up fireplace install and a jerk of a installer, the only thing that has tickled my taste buds this week is a Melon Ball.

    Melon Ball
    1part melon schnapps
    1part vodka
    4 parts orange juice

    I SOOOO want to get my hands in Indian food in the new kitchen. I've got a great local spice shop that carries a huge number of Indian spices and spice mixes.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    florantha - SO with you on the cheese. I just finished watching "Say Cheese" from Alton Brown...very interesting. I can't do 'moldy' looking cheeses, though - I know; odd; I have other strange tastes...no shellfish, mushrooms or bugs. I saw a "Chopped" episode featuring softshell crabs & I about died...they eat the whole thing just fried up! ACK!

    pinch_me - I don't do fish sticks, either so you're safe! I see your 12 miles & raise you 288 miles. Yep - 300 miles from McDonalds, Wendy's, etc. I live in a small, remote Alaskan town that is at the end of the road. You have to drive to Valdez on purpose, it's not on its way to anywhere...we are at the 'end of the road'. So...you're a 'Micracle Whip' gal? Just let me know when you're coming so I can take the dog sled for a run to the store - it's only 14 miles down the road.

    John - here's the recipe I concocted - I had just discovered the loveliness of pre-shelled Edamame & used it a lot for a while:

    EDAMAME SALAD

    This is a very easy salad that is so colorful, fresh & low carb.

    2 bags shelled Edamame, (soybeans) cooked according to package directions, run cold water over to stop cooking. Note: You can buy shelled Edamame in the freezer section (highly recommend!)
    Toasted sesame seeds, if desired
    Roasted slivered almonds
    Fresh Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
    Red bell peppers, diced for color contrast
    Small cubes of cheese (Habanera Jack, etc.)
    Grape tomatoes
    Vinaigrette dressing of choice (I use Balsamic vinegar & Extra-virgin olive oil.)

    Option: Add some smoked Red salmon for a more main dish salad

    Mix all ingredients except nuts & chill.
    Add nuts just before serving.

    Have to ask: what is your 'poetic license'? Did your exchange student speak English? That must've been a great experience for you all.

    Casey - does it take long to clarify butter? Do you do a bunch at one time or only as needed?

    becky - I just started using My Spice Sage and I checked & they ship to Canada! It's a great site...I will link it below. Here's what they say about shipping to Canada:

    "We proudly ship our full product line of 300+ gourmet spices and ingredients to Canada. We ship via Purolator, the most trusted name in Canadian shipping. We offer an extremely low flat fee of only $15 and FREE shipping on orders $75+. This includes all shipping charges, duties and fees. Simply select the Canada Purolator shipping option from the drop down menu on the shopping cart page. In order to offer you such a low cross border shipping rate, we consolidate our Canadian shipping to a weekly pickup at our fulfillment center. Thus, you can expect your order to arrive anywhere from 2 business days to 12 business days depending on when your order is place and where you are located. We will notify you if an item is back-ordered and we are unable to deliver within the 12 business day time frame. We look forward to bringing you the finest and freshest hard to find ingredients to Canada. Please make sure to tell all your Canadian friends!"

    They ship a free sample with every order. PLUS, you get to pick another freebie. My first time last month I picked Virginia Peanuts. I was expecting an airline-sized individual bag but it was a POUND of really great tasting peanuts! They are cheaper than Penzeys in most cases so I'm going to use them along with Penzeys since I am partial to some of their things (plus, I've been using them for a very long time & I almost felt like I was 'unfaithful' when I opened the box from Spice Sage!) :)

    I grew up in a home that raised chickens. It was just a casual thing, not like a farm...they even had ducks (which scared me all the time...they'd chase me). I bet you get some good eggs!

    I've never had kimchi...does it have a pickled taste?

    breezygirl - Oh, you are so fortunate to have a local spice shop...it must be heaven walking into that store. Sounds like you are having lots of 'melon-coly' days ;)

    Here is a link that might be useful: My Spice Sage shipping to Canada

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    melaska, thanks so much for the spice info. This might well open up a new world for me here on the farm : ). Though in my neck of the woods, Purolator telephones us and we have to drive into town to pick up our packages.

    The eggs are wonderful, and so is the beef. I raise ducks and geese from time to time as well (here the ducks are sweet but the geese can have attitude), and my husband dreams of oven roasted potatoes in goose fat. And we grind our wheat for flour.

    Kimchi is pickled fermented cabbage, so yes, it has a pickled taste. And spicy!

    Becky

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I love Thai food, but unfortunately DH gives it a thumbs down, so I've never made it. Just have to have my fix at a local place called Pad Thai. And their Pad Thai is to die for! Drool!!!

  • 13 years ago
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    becky...how far is town? I used to grind my own flour, too. Along with sourdough bread, rolls, pancakes, waffles. It was from a starter that has been perpetuated since the Gold Rush days. I was so sad when I let it die. I can always get more from my friend but I just don't eat much of that anymore.

    Roasted potatoes in goose fat - I'll probably never get to taste that but I do love roast potatoes. At least his potatoes will have 'attitude' :)

    Joyce - I love a lot of Thai food, too. We even have a Thai restaurant here called "Mai Thai". I've only had a few things but I fell in love with their Red Curry Salmon Soup - yum!!! I love the leaves they put in it - I can't remember what they are called. I've tried replicating the recipe at home but, of course, haven't quite managed to hit the mark. I'll keep trying. I cannot believe how much fat is in regular coconut milk! No wonder it's so good. I got a bunch of low-fat coconut milk in Anchorage so I'll start the experimenting again.

    What's in Pad Thai? I've heard of it before.

  • 13 years ago
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    Melaska, you can get lavender dried from the spice merchant, but it's not necessary. I can't imagine it makes a big difference in that recipe. Just put in a little salt. I bet if you used table salt hardly anyone would know. The lemon and amaretto are strong enough flavors.

    Pad Thai is the most well known Thai noodle dish, and can be a greasy lump from a fast food joint, or the most delicate and delicious thing ever (if you like noodles--which you probably don't). There are all kinds of yummy things mixed in it, and the bestest part is the tamarind.

    You can buy tamarind paste in a jar. I've made it from tamarind pods, and it's an icky sticky mess.

  • 13 years ago
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    pl1log - My Spice Sage has lavender buds...is that what you mean? Now that I see the Pad Thai picture - I've seen this before. I could probably eat a few noodles but I'd eat the other ingredients more :) (Well, except shrimp!) I know...bizarre ;) Speaking of bizarre...tamarind is a very unusual ingredient!

    Dissecting a tamarind pod (it's the pulp that is used)

    From about.com:

    Definition: The pod of a tropical tree of the containing seeds in an acidic, juicy pulp that is used to flavor a variety of foods.

    History and Fruit
    A tamarind tree is very large (up to 100 feet tall) and grows very slowly. It is native to Africa but grows well in any tropical climate. It bears fruits that are around 6 inches in length and look like a large, curved bean pod. Young tamarind fruit has a pliable brown skin and the inside greenish with whitish seeds. As the fruit matures the greenish insides turn brown and the pod becomes more bulbous. As the fruit dries out, the pod becomes stiff and brittle,the insides become pasty and the seeds turn brown.

    Tamarind in Mexico
    Jalisco, Guerrero, Colima, Chiapas and Veracruz are the top tamarind producers in Mexico. Most trees are planted for the fruit, but some are planted as shade trees because they are so wide. Tamarind fruit flavor is very popular and is used to flavor many foods and candies.

    Preparing the Tamarind
    The quickest way to get to the pulp is to break the shell by hand and remove the sticky pulp with your fingers. For commercial usage, the entire pod is boiled to soften the outer shell, then it is ground up with water and strained so that the pulp is removed from the bits of shell and seed. The pulp is then canned for later sale.

    Flavor
    The flavor of the greenish unripened tamarind is very watery, acidic and very sour. The ripened sticky pulp has a musky flavor and is sweet and sour due to the sugars and the acid content.

    Cooking Applications
    The ripe tamarind pulp has many uses. Some recipes call for the pulp to be removed from the pod first, and others allow soaking in the cooking liquid and breaking the pod open in the liquid to release the pulp, then straining the mixture to remove the pieces of the outer shell. Tamarind can be added to soups, marinades or sweets.
    Pronunciation: Tam-uh-rind
    Also Known As: Tamarindo (in Mexico), Indian Date

    I'll also link another site about tamarind...

    Here is a link that might be useful: About Tamarind

  • 13 years ago
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    The closest town is about 10 miles away (one post office, one library, one supermarket, etc.), the nearest big city about 150 miles away, and between the farming and building business, and home schooling, we don't get to the big city more than two or three times a year. Some years not even that much. I am hoping that when we start building our new house in the spring, that will change : ).

    That's remarkable about the starter! As for the potatoes, if you ever decide to roast a goose or a duck, save the fat!

    Becky

  • 13 years ago
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    melaska - I've always been a fan of food from everywhere, as has my hubby been, but we're also parents to kids from Ethiopia, Haiti and China (plus our bio kids), so food is an essential part of keeping their unique cultures alive.

    I'm not sure what kind of chiles they use. They just look like the type of dried red chiles you see in Latino markets. They spread them out on huge tarps to dry, and then use a giant mortar and pestle to grind them up. They use probably 20 different spices, all ground up in the mortar and then mixed with the ground chiles on the tarp. I learned quickly it wasn't a good idea to be outside during berbere mixing! If the breeze picks up, you're in trouble quickly. Each day someone worked on the berbere, we'd hear at least one child shriek in pain and run to a tub of water to rinse out their eyes. It's brutal stuff!

    becky - we live in the boonies, too, but being able to order things from the internet helps me a lot. I have friends who live in big cities who send me things, and Chinese/Taiwanese friends who bring me back treasures from their trips. One friend packed home several pounds of glutinous rice flour for me in her checked baggage! ;o)

    If you (or anyone else) is interested, you can order berbere and other Ethiopian staples (including injera) at www.ethiopianspices.com

    john - I buy "Forbidden black rice" and use it to make that Thai dessert concoction of coconut milk/mango/rice because that's how it was served to us in Guangzhou. It is *yummy*, and our kids get a kick out of how it turns the milk purple.

  • 13 years ago
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    ...making reservations, LOL. Oh darn, you mean when I'm in the kitchen? That's different....

    My motto is, we eat out for things I don't want to make at home (either too complicated or don't want the leftovers). Living where we do - the San Francisco Bay Area - we have choices, choices, choices.

    I can make a very good curry, and every once in a while I do. But it's more fun to go out, choosing from Japanese, Burmese, Nepalese, Malaysian, Indian (northern or southern), Thai, Laotian, Cambodian, Pakistani, or Afghani.

    Periodically I yearn for sweetbreads, and so we are leaving in a couple of weeks for Monterey/Carmel, CA, where a fabulous French bistro makes the best sweetbreads DH and I have ever had the pleasure of sticking our forks in. They're even better than my mother's, and I never thought I'd be able to say that.

    Currently I'm using a lot of La Chinata pimenton, because I bought it in the 2.2-lb. size. Amazing in a cream sauce, BTW. Not just for BBQ and tapas - adds a wonderful depth of flavor to pasta and seafood.

    We've gotten sufficient rains this winter to avoid drought, and my three Meyer lemon bushes are producing bucketsfull. Discovered this recipe, and it's been a huge hit with my friends and family. I modified it to use on 2" cubes of chicken breast, which I threaded onto skewers and broiled - 7 min on one side, 3 min on the other, highest rack. Served with a spicy peanut sauce, yummy yummy yummy!

    Chicken with Garlic, Lemon & Mint
    From Roving Feast columnist Marlena Spieler to the SF Chronicle

    INGREDIENTS
    1 chicken, cut into serving pieces
    10 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
    1 cup fresh mint leaves
    Juice of 3 lemons, seeds removed
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    Salt and pepper
    1/2 cup dry white wine
    2/3 cup chicken broth
    3 to 4 ounces slivered almonds, lightly toasted

    INSTRUCTIONS: Combine the chicken, garlic, 2/3 cup of the mint, the lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste in a plastic container. Cover tightly. Refrigerate overnight, or up to 2 days. Remove chicken from marinade and wipe dry. Reserve marinade.

    Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet. Add the legs, thighs and wings; saute 20 to 25 minutes, turning several times. Add the breast pieces and saute for 10 to 15 minutes, turning occasionally. Remove chicken pieces and keep them warm.

    Discard the fat in the pan, then add the wine and cook over high heat until reduced by half. Add the chicken broth and reserved marinade and cook over high heat until reduced to 1/2 cup. Taste for seasoning, then pour the sauce over the chicken. Garnish with almonds and the remaining mint.
    Serves 3 or 4

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Okay, the pulp of the tamarind is the stuff in the third vertical that sticks together the strings and seeds in the fourth vertical.

    The "cooking" part of your post doesn't make sense to me. You don't put the shell in the cooking liquid! You break off the shell, which is easy, and put the pods in, straining off to remove the strings, seeds and hulls. If you aren't making a recipe, you can just use water. When it's all strained off (often takes a few rounds), you can use it as is, simmmer off the water to make paste for future cooking, or spread the paste so that it'll dry thoroughly, and when it's down to gummy, form it into a block that'll dry further and hold well. You can then cut off a piece and rehydrate to the consistency you want it.

    What also doesn't show in the picture is how sticky your hands, face, hair, clothes, stove and backsplash become. :)

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Melaska, I live an hour and a half from Burnett Co. Dairy in Wisconsin. It's an addiction for me. And if I can work up a field trip to Green County, Wisc. I'm in double heaven. So much cheese, so little time.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    becky - it was such a great starter...I used whole potatoes, cooked & blended, for the 'growing' for the next day's delicious delights! :) The waffles were insanely crispy & airy - it was like eating crispy air.

    worldmom - wow, your home sounds so much fun & tasty!

    jkom - you're so lucky to live in such a grand culinary treasure trove. We went out to dinner last night & I understand ordering things you don't make at home. I was looking at the Red Salmon & stopped myself. "Now, why get this when my freezer is full of it?!?" On to Filet Mignon which I do NOT ever make at home. YUM! Thanks for the recipe - I'm wondering - can you substitute the lemons for limes?

    pl1log - I didn't understand either probably because I didn't read it...I just copied it from about.com ;) Sounds like a lot of work & the reason I'd just buy a jar of the paste. So, you've done this before? Only once, you say?

    florantha - Cheese heaven! Lucky duck. What's your fave? My favorite hard cheese is Parmesan Reggiano Stravecchio from Italy. I also love aged cheddar cheese.

  • 13 years ago
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    Yeah, I've done it. :)

    You implying like climbing Mt. Fuji?

  • 13 years ago
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    Temperence Brennan speak: "I don't know what that means."

    :) Sooo...only once? ;)

  • 13 years ago
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    jkmom, I don't suppose you'd be willing to share your mother's sweetbread recipe? Please? I have memories of wonderful sweetbreads at a now-defunct French restaurant in NYC (Larr�'s).

    worldmom, living in Canada makes shipping either prohibitively expensive for companies that will ship here, or impossible for those that won't. And there are the odd few who won't even accept payment with a non-US credit card. I've been trying to get around this for the past 17 years. I like the idea of My Spice Sage shipping to Canada, but my frugal side finds $15 for shipping rather high, especially with a new house to pay for...

    Becky

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    melaska, I think you could sub limes for the lemons. I use Meyers, which are less acidic than standard grocery store lemons, and think they work just fine in the recipe. So using limes would just add a touch more sweetness. What surprised me about the recipe is that my DH is not a fan of mint, yet he really likes it in this recipe.

    beckysharp, I never saw my mother use a recipe, except maybe for Bisquick, LOL! From what I recall of her creamed sweetbreads, she did the standard blanching and trimming, then cut them into rough cubes, sauteed them in butter with sliced mushrooms, added some heavy whipping cream (that's all one used back in those days), simmered until slightly thickened, and then served with triangles of toast.

    The funny thing is, we kids were the usual uncivilized barbarians - we'd eat most things, but certain foods would just be 'icky' and we wouldn't eat it. For my sister it was milk, for me it was eggplant.

    Certain foods my father didn't like, and they were expensive delicacies that my mother loved - one being lobster, the other being sweetbreads. She would cook them at midnight, just for herself. The lobster was steamed and served with garlic butter; the sweetbreads were creamed with mushrooms.

    Of course we'd smell something cooking and sneak downstairs, and beg for a taste. She didn't want to share it, and would say, "No, you won't like it. This is just for grown-ups!"

    Well, those are magic words to any kid. "No, we want to try it! We'll like it, we really will!" we'd insist.

    So we were determined to like the forkful she'd grudgingly dole out....and to this day, we all LOVE lobsters and yes, sweetbreads!

  • 13 years ago
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    This thread is making me miss having a kitchen. Our kitchen remodel is almost done and hopefully within the next few days I'll be able to try some of the great recipe ideas you are all sharing.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Thanks to all for the great recipes and suggestions, they are great and I plan to try all of them!

    sandyponder

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    jkom - how funny...maybe we parents should use "No, you won't like it. This is just for grown-ups!" for veggies & such! :) I guess it just goes to show you that you love what you grow up with! :)

    Dreamweaver - are you going to show us your kitchen when it's done? Hope so :)

    sandy - let us know how it turns out...I love trying new recipes. I get so stuck with the way I cook sometimes...you just gotta do a jumpstart sometimes. The Dal Makhani was the one for me.

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    O.T. to Melaska, We're an equal opportunity cheese consumer here--I even seek out and buy Limburger, which is still made in Wisconsin but DH draws the line here. There are a number of very affordable gorganzolas and blues made in Wisc. and Minnesota. Also lots and lots of cheddars in Wisconsin. Wisconsin marketers produce a cheese-beer road trip map that is my guide. I love it. Have hit about a third of the dairies.

    I can get aged cheddars at Burnett Co Farmer Coop for no more than $7/pound, which has spoiled me. They've worked up some specialties also which we're really enjoying. They do a mail order business. Moozarilla is their yogurt cheese that is very white and gets a lot of comments. Alpha Morning Sun and the Wood River series are nicely done. I'm not sure their parmesan would be up to your standard, but maybe. They've won awards for provolone for a long time and for string cheese.

    "The Splendid Table" on NPR turned me on to Roth Kase's gruyere from Monroe, WI. Best quality gruyere made in USA.

    Prairie Breeze, made in Iowa, is also showing up in specialty stores here. A real hit at wine tastings.

    We send boxes of cheese and wild rice to family in Fairbanks in Priority Mail boxes. No California cheese need apply, despite all their marketing.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Burnett Dairy Cooperative in Alpha, Wisconsin near Grantsburg

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    lox

    Nutella

    vintage Champagne

    not necessarily in that order though!

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    LOL, antss, that would be a strange combo in one swallow!

    Oooh, Scottish lox, fresh blini, Sevruga caviar, a dollop of creme fraiche, and vintage champagne.....sign me up!! Yum!

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Where have I been?????

    Why didn't anyone tell me about baby kiwis???????

    Like, take all of your favorite fruit, and the very best candy, and wish them all into one with a decorator design and a thin, protective skin like a grape, and a darling little topknot like a kewpie doll.

    The most delicious thing I've eaten in months. Toe curling, ode inspiring, blast o' flavor amazingness. No cooking involved. Just wash, remove topknot and navel, and pop off the skin (it's edible, but a little bitter). OMG!!!

  • 13 years ago
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    Now pl1log - you have created a craving that cannot be satisfied! ACK! I've never seen them here in our rinky dink store. I love kiwis but I've never seen a baby. They're pretty small to begin with so these are smaller?

    florantha: Thanks for that link - I'm going to have fun poking around. Moozarilla...how cute is that? Have you tasted it? What's it like? Mail order, eh? I'll have to see if they'll mail to Alaska. Parmesan - I didn't even know about the Italian stuff until over a year ago so I'm sure it's fine. The longer it ages, the more crystals it forms. 24 months is good. Thanks for sharing that website!

    jkom - I've always wanted to taste creme fraiche - what's it taste like?

    Antss - my daughter & her son are nuts over Nutella. I've never had it - I know, GASP! lol I don't like sugar anymore but you can bet your sweet bippy that Nutella would've been high up on my grocery list way back when I was raising my kids & hubby! I cannot believe it escaped me all these years...Where have I BEEN???

  • 13 years ago
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    Yep. Smaller. No fuzz. They're a different plant, not underdeveloped kiwis, but the insides look similar. It's a much more intense flavor, and not as tart. About the size and shape of a gumdrop, but tastes a lot better.

    I might just have gotten the best box. Perhaps they're not all this good. They came from New Zealand, so could just as easily be in Alaska....

  • 13 years ago
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    Hmmm, I'll have to look for them when I'm "Outside" next week for 5 weeks.

    Ha ha...that reminds me of a saying we have here about the produce. Our market is owned & operated by Safeway...they go by the name Eagle Quality Centers in the smaller Alaskan towns. We are literally at the end of the road...Valdez gets the last of everything. When we get an especially good crop of produce in, we say "Oh my, we must've gotten Anchorage's shipment by mistake, Hallelujah!" :)

  • 13 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Creme fraiche is like a very mild sour cream. Less of a 'ripe' flavor, and not as thick either. You can actually whip creme fraiche, too.