There is more to love and desire than just picking apples.
How boring one may think, a whole Food on Friday about apples! Well, leaving aside that apples are one of the most interesting, nourishing, tasty, and healthy ingredients you could add to a dish ~ an apple is the most mystical and spiritual of fruits.
Myths about the apple being the ultimate symbol of love, sex, and sin go much, much further back than the Bible’s Adam and Eve. The ancient Minoans had almost the same apple myth, and their civilisation goes back around 9,000 years. Most appropriately we are now in the star sign of Libra, and if you know your Myths of Libra you will also know that this is the time of Aphrodite, and her fruit is the apple ~ well it would be, wouldn’t it?
So to begin this week, from Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower we have apple cinnamon steel cut oatmeal. Now I’ve never liked oatmeal, mostly because I hate milk. But, this recipe appeals to me, and it uses almond milk ~ cool.
Apple Cinnamon Steel Cut Oatmeal
San Diego girl Averie Sunshine has this recipe for caramel apple sheet pan pancakes. Ready in 10 minutes for breakfast or brunch, or a dessert….. Oh Wow! (Perhaps I’d make the pancake mix from scratch.)
Caramel Apple Sheet Pan Pancakes
Some combinations are just meant to be, and this is one of the very best. From Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest we have apple butter and sage pork chops ~ perfect.
Apple Butter and Sage Pork Chops
Another main course, this time from Heather Christo, pasta with apples, bacon, sage, and chantrelle mushrooms ~ and this recipe is both gluten and dairy free. Never mind that so much, it both looks and sounds delicious. Apple and sage go so well together, and there is no truth in the rumour that apple is a female aphrodisiac….. sage is a different matter all together.
Pasta with Apples, Bacon, Sage, and Chantrelle Mushrooms
Lets move along to dessert, or something for afternoon tea and from Todd and Dianne, the White on Rice Couple there’s this spiced apple coffee cake. For me, this looks delicious. It’s a recipe I’d like to try, even though I can’t bake for love nor money…..
Spiced Apple Coffee Cake
And now a drink for those of us ho don’t want to get absolutely hammered on scrumpy, Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats has a cool post entitled; how to make an apple cider shandy. You know what? I don’t touch booze anymore , but if I did, I’d make a beeline for this at parties. Something else, you can cheat on this already alcoholic recipe and come up with something that’s almost as strong as scrumpy.
How To Make An Apple Cider Shandy
Finally for this week we have our recipe collection. From Country Living Magazine 60+ easy and delicious apple recipes to make this season ~ and amongst this cornucopia there’s this simple and easy garden tuna salad sandwich. You need not use white hot dog rolls if you want a healthier alternative such as a sprouted grain bread.
Garden Tuna Salad Sandwich
I have written a previous blog about apples.….
and one about the medicinal use of rosehips in apple cider vinegar
one of sour, two of sweet, three of strong, and four of weak
And that’s how to make Planters’ Rum Punch, an Englishman’s preferred drink to go along with a summer barbecue. The strong is Caribbean Dark Rum, (or try Woods 100), and the sour is fresh lime juice. You can guess the rest ~ (simple syrup and iced water).
Well now, this coming Monday, the 28th of May, is Memorial Day in the USA. It’s also the Spring Bank Holiday here in Great Britain. For some of us this is the first real day of summer, more or less ~ although the weather in most of England and America hasn’t been very summery of late.
Particularly in the USA, this coming Monday is the time to clean the cobwebs of that old barbecue, dust down the patio furniture, invite some friends overs, and hang out in the yard eating, drinking, and shooting the
So, for this week’s Food on Friday I’m going to feature stuff that goes well with kicking back outdoors.
I know a very nice American girl who really likes cilantro and lime. So, first to the BBQ this week is Jessica Merchant from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and her blog How Sweet Eats. Jessica has this cool recipe for Cilantro Lime Flank Steak, and while it will only take you 20 minutes to cook in the broiler, you need to start marinading the steak on Sunday. Make plenty and take the leftovers to work on Tuesday, (if there are any leftovers).
Cilantro Lime Flank Steak
From San Diego we have the sunshine girl Averie with her Grilled Steak Kabobs, (funny we call these things kebabs in England). You will want a good top sirloin steak for these rich looking skewers. Again, these will cook very fast on the grill, but you want to allow at least 4 hours for the marinade to work.
Grilled Steak Kabobs
If you don’t like steak, then what about these Honey BBQ Chicken Kabobs from Chungah at Damn Delicious. Again this dish will only take you 20 minutes to cook on the grill, but you need to allow a couple of extra hours for the marinade to do its work. Looks tasty to me.
Honey BBQ Chicken Kabobs
To go with all this meat you’re going to cook on your freshly cleaned BBQ, you’re going to need some salad, and from Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower, we have this good looking dish; Avocado Corn Caprese Salad, dressed with a honey balsamic vinaigrette. Looks so delicious and refreshing.
Avocado Corn Caprese Salad
From the Californian White on Rice couple we have a very different Grilled Romaine and Corn Salad, something you can make on your BBQ in under half an hour ~ while you’re grilling your other vegetables too. (If you’re cooking any vegetables…)
Grilled Romaine & Corn Salad
I know that most of you like the recipe collections I feature, and here’s another one. From Olive magazine we have the 32 Best Ever BBQ Recipes to help you enjoy the sunshine this coming Memorial Day. I particularly like this very quick and easy recipe for Miami-Style Blackened Fish Sandwich with Smoked Paprika Mayo ~ ready in just 20 minutes. Me, I’d use salmon, tuna, or swordfish to make a really top-notch blackened fish sandwich.
Miami-Style Blackened Fish Sandwich with Smoked Paprika Mayo
Should you want to make a dessert for your guests, then Elise Bauer at Simply Recipes has found us a collection of 9 Crowd-Pleasing Desserts for Your Memorial Day Party. I particularly like the look of this Lemon Poppy Seed Bundt Cake recipe by Cindy Rahe.
Lemon Poppy Seed Bundt Cake
And finally this Friday, for those of us who aren’t content just to suck back beers, we have another collection from Wide Open Eats, 20 Best Big Batch Cocktails for Backyard BBQs and Lazy Sundays. As a very practiced consumer of alcoholic beverages I particularly like the look of this Pitcher Hurricane Cocktail. this recipe is to make a gallon of the stuff. Personally I’d just tip in a whole bottle of both dark rum and light rum, (and I’d also miss out the metrosexual umbrellas), but that’s me for you.
Pitcher Hurricane Cocktail
the English version of Memorial Day is observed on Remembrance Sunday, as near as possible to November 11th
It’s a solemn occasion.
We may all be sensitive to gluten.
In yesterday’s post I wrote about how bad gluten can be for some people, and how bad modern American wheat is for everyone. Ergo, today’s Food on Friday features gluten-free recipes for those of us who don’t want to consume wheat flour, and for those of us who may have some degree of non celiac gluten intolerance.
Heather Christo’s website holds all allergen free, and mostly gluten-free recipes. Not only do they all sound delicious and nutritious, but all of Heather’s dishes look absolutely beautiful. Recently, as well as featuring grilled nectarine balsamic chicken, blackberry coconut oatmeal muffins, (both vegan and gluten free), and telling us everything we need to know about gluten free beer, Heather has a great recipe for grilled salmon, strawberries, and nectarine kebabs. Looks fantastic.
Grilled Salmon, Strawberries, and Nectarine Kebabs
San Diego cook Averie Sunshine has a great recipe for spicy baked eggs and hash brown casserole, a pumpkin and cheesy baked potato casserole, as well as this creamy and crispy hash browns frittata, and Averie says all of these are both vegetarian and gluten-free.
Creamy and Crispy Hash Browns Frittata
Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower has this really easy recipe for garlic shrimp spring rolls with tamarind vinaigrette, Vietnamese inspired and gluten-free. This should be ready in 35 minutes and would make a fabulous midweek dinner.
Garlic Shrimp Spring Rolls with Tamarind Vinaigrette
Todd & Diane, the White on Rice Couple have a stack of vegetarian and gluten-free recipes. But being a meat-eater, I really like the look of this sriracha roast chicken with sriracha gravy.
Sriracha Roast Chicken with Sriracha Gravy
From Group SOI, purveyors of Italian Food Solutions, we have a quinoa salad with cardamom and coriander extra virgin olive oil. Quinoa has become one of the most popular health foods, as it’s high in protein, has all nine essential amino acids, and is gluten-free.
Quinoa Salad with Cardamom and Coriander Extra Virgin Olive Oil
If you want to be gluten-free, but you must have noodles, then try Ramen Noodles. Ramen Noodles should be gluten free, but it’s always worth checking the labels. So, from Teighan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest we have these 15 minute garlic butter Ramen noodles. What could be easier for a midweek dinner?
15 Minute Garlic Butter Ramen Noodles
For those of us who like recipe collections, Woman’s Day has 40 delicious dinner recipes you won’t even realize are gluten-free, including this fantastic looking balsamic chicken with apple, lentil, and spinach salad. This very easy dinner should be ready in just 25 minutes.
Balsamic Chicken with Apple, Lentil and Spinach Salad
there are loads of gluten-free cookbooks
click on the book
Cricket is paradise in the summer sun.
Summer is upon us, in some parts of the world it’s Father’s Day this Sunday, and in England we’re playing summer sports; cricket, tennis, and gardening. OK, the English love gardening. However English Gentlemen mostly like sitting in the garden sipping something cool while we watch our Good Lady doing all the hard work. So, some summery drinks…
I really like the look and sound of this strawberry summer water from Jessica Merchant at How Sweet It Is. And, if you liked, instead of using fresh or sparkling water you could chose a very light white wine instead. (In passing Jessica says she’s only ever been to a spa once in her life!!!! Come on guy, pay for her to go to a cool spa!!!)
Strawberry Summer Water
The ever-artistic Heather Christ has these apricot gin and tonics. Heather says they are perfect for summer sipping, and I for one believe her.
Apricot Gin and Tonics
For some unknown reason, we English drink Pimms in summer ~ never did like the stuff myself. However, Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest has an interesting take on Pimms with her strawberry melon elderflower Pimms cup. Looks very nice indeed.
Strawberry Melon Elderflower Pimm’s Cup
This watermelon, fresh herbs, & sotol cocktail from Todd at Honestly Yum sounds very cooling. I suppose that if you’re all out of sotol you could get by with tequila instead.
Watermelon Fresh Herbs & Sotol Cocktail
Todd & Diane, the White On Rice Couple, have this great post about a great drink; the watermelon margarita. Want to know how to make the perfect watermelon margarita? Then just click on the link.
‘Inside a Watermelon’ Margaritas
Finally for now, from the lovely Averie Sunshine, I bring you grilled pineapple strawberry lemonade sangria. I ask you, what’s not to like?
Grilled Pineapple Strawberry Lemonade Sangria
a recipe book for you
Our Bodies Are Our Gardens
Busy people who have aspirations towards being fit and healthy in body, mind, and spirit have a problem. Eating well, eating clean and healthy, almost always means one should cook for oneself because buying ready-made meals, buying takeout, eating out, or eating out of cans almost always means you’re eating a fair degree of unhealthy junk. And, cooking for yourself takes up time and energy, which might be in short supply at the end of a busy day.
Ergo, busy people need fairly quick, easy, and healthy recipes. In last week’s Food on Friday we were talking about healthy salmon, which lends itself to eating well, and this week we’re doing chicken, which is also a good healthy staple. But, buy decent fresh, uncooked, healthy chicken, (and salmon), not the cheapest crap your supermarket has on special offer.
I know some of you like links to recipe collections, (some of you even pay good money to have people send you recipe collections and shopping lists), so from Cooking Light we have 50 healthy chicken breast recipes, including this sauteed chicken with sage browned butter.
Sautéed Chicken with Sage Browned Butter
And, from Chungah Rhee at Damn Delicious I can offer you 10 weeknight chicken breast recipes to use up all those nice pieces of chicken you have languishing in your refrigerator and freezer. I like the look of this easy grilled chicken, especially as our chef says we’ll never need another grilled chicken recipe after this 25 minute dish.
Easy Grilled Chicken
If all those ideas weren’t enough, Country Living has 64 of the most delicious things you can do with chicken for dinner. Wow! Originally from Jaclyn at Cooking Classy, one of the 64 dishes is this avocado caprese skillet chicken ~ so easy, and avocado is supposed to be very good for you.
Avocado Caprese Skillet Chicken
Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower has some interesting dishes in her 5 easy chicken recipes for a weeknight dinner. I especially like her honey chipotle shredded chicken, because even though it takes a while to prepare, once it’s dome you can save the prepared chicken and use it in so many cool ways.
Honey Chipotle Shredded Chicken
I have to remind myself that not everywhere in the world is suffering from an English winter. Not everyone is feeling cold, grey, and miserable and in need of winter comfort food. In that case Heather Christo offers us this gluten free fried chicken cobb salad ~ I may forget the drizzle and make this tonight.
Gluten Free Fried Chicken Cobb Salad
Francophile English lady, Amanda, of Chez le Rêve Français has a recipe for a wonderfully warming chicken and broccoli pasta bake. This looks quick, (30 minutes), easy, healthy, (broccoli is good). And, I like a good pasta bake.
Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake
You probably won’t remember, (why should you?), but in Food on Friday #33 we had a whole lot of cool and sexy chicken dishes, among which was Thai Larb Chicken Lettuce Cups from the White on Rice Couple. As a slight change on the healthy lettuce cups theme, I can give you a recipe video for easy chicken lettuce cups from the Best Recipe Box.
Easy Chicken Lettuce Cups
thanks so much to all the great chefs featured in this week’s Food on Friday
enjoy your cooking and healthy eating
email ~ email@example.com
Christmas Party Booze
‘Tis the season to be jolly.
Some people like parties, and some people like drinking. For people who like a lot of both, here are some drinks that should probably go down well at Christmas Parties. Good Grief!
Remember, anyone can make a really strong cocktail that will get people very drunk very fast ~ but how good a party does that make? So here are some more tastefully interesting drinks.
First up this week is a great looking cocktail I found on Jessica Merchant’s site how sweet it is we have this great recipe for rose champagne mojitos. I would serve these to my discerning guests.
Rose Champagne Mojitos
For a different take on the mojito, Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest gives us this brilliant looking White Christmas Mojito.
White Christmas Mojito
Maple Apple Cider
Here’s something for a Californian Christmas. Recovering pastry chef, the bojon gourmet has these rosemary, pomegranate and grilled meyer lemon vodka sparklers. Don’t try saying all that after drinking five or six of those things.
Rosemary Pomegranate and Grilled Meyer Lemon Vodka Sparklers
From Chungah at Damn Delicious there’s a simple and easy strawberry pineapple mimosa, although in England we call champagne and orange juice Buck’s Fizz, and we make it a lot stronger. Add a splash of brandy to that and you’ve got yourself a fresh juice Barbotage. Consume that Barbotage very carefully.
Strawberry Pinapple Mimosa
This recipe for holiday rum punch, by Tracy Shutterbean, (aka Tracy Benjamin), is straight from the San Francisco bay area. I’ve drunk rum punch in San Francisco, and I know that if you’re not careful this punch could get you very drunk. Nice.
Holiday Rum Punch
At some time during your own party, you may want to retire to a quiet corner, perhaps with a special friend, and enjoy a glass of the water of life. If you don’t know about whisky, here’s a post from Todd and Diane in LA, the White On Rice Couple, telling you all about the different types of whisk(e)y. Back in the day I drank Laphroaig ~ too strong and too sophisticated for most ordinary men.
If all that wasn’t enough, from Country Living magazine here are 28 Christmas cocktails that will make you forget all about the presents. These are are pretty easy, including this winter wonderland cocktail, originally from Nicole at the Marvelous Misadventures of a Foodie.
Winter Wonderland Cocktail
How about some appetisers to go with all this booze? Heather Christo has the ultimate vegan appetizer platter, Damn Delicious has cheesy garlic bread, and easy firecracker shrimp, Cooking up the Pantry has cheese and mustard puffs, Half Baked Harvest has a cheese fondue board, or you can check out Food on Friday # 25 ~ Bar Snacks.
Easy Firecracker Shrimp
just don’t be a crass American and serve beers in the bottle, give your guests a glass.
Don’t get me wrong, I like California, but sometimes the food there owes a lot to everywhere else. So, for this week’s Food on Friday I’ve tried to come up with some dishes that I think would go down well with my friend, ‘the girl riding shotgun’ and especially dishes that aren’t so Mexican or Spanish in flavour.
No, that didn’t make much sense to me either. But here are some great recipes from some great cooks.
First up this week, from we have this hoisin salmon with zucchini slaw from Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest.
Hoisin Salmon With Zucchini Slaw
Also from Tieghan there’s this great looking heirloom tomato and zucchini galette with honey and thyme.
Heirloom Tomato Galette With Honey & Thyme
Heather Christo makes the very best looking salads of all, and this grilled chicken, beet and cherry salad with honey balsamic dressing is no exception. Only in California.
Grilled Chicken Beet And Cherry Salad
Jessica Merchant, (aka How Sweet It Is), is from Pittsburgh PA, but I think this BBQ shrimp and lime avocado toast is quintessentially Californian. So sue me.
BBQ Shrimp And Lime Avocado Toast
Silicon Velley girl Elise Bauer created a lot of her recipes in Carmichael, but this very Califonian sauteed shrimp with warm tropical fruit salsa would go down well anywhere in SoCal. Check out all Elise’ dishes at Simply Recipes.
Sauteed Shrimp With Warm Tropical Fruit Salsa
I know, for a fact, that most Californians can’t even poach an egg, but this dish of wild fennel poached trout with courgette taziki would go down well at the end of a hot Californian day. Petra from Food Eat Love may be English, but the name of Petra’s blog is very Californian.
Wild Fennel Poached Trout With Courgette Taziki
Completely different from England the LA based White on Rice Couple, Todd Porter and Diane Cu have a great low carb chicken zucchini noodle pad Thai. OK, low carb is cool. Right?
Low Carb Chicken Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai
From the very Californian Chungah we have this seriously easy and seriously good dish of lemon dill salmon in foil. Really this great looking fish is a 30 minute dish, tops. And, I’m pretty certain anyone can make a great job of cooking this. damn delicious dish.
Lemon Dill Salmon In Foil
If you want something even easier, also from Chungah, we have these zucchini parmesan foil packets. This idea is just so, so very simple to do. Trust me, I’ve tried cooking like this, and it works.
Zucchini Parmesan Foil Packets
California is a great place for a long, long road trip, the road trip with no timetable and no destination.
Trust me, I know
Figs? FIGS!!! I used to believe figs only came in biscuits called fig rolls, (or cookies called fig newtons). Now I am more of a worldly-wise guy I know figs are delicious fresh, and in a load of cool recipes. I’m also given to understand that the warmer parts of the world are awash with ripening figs just now.
Figs are the original superfood. As well as being highly nutritious, they are also good for helping with constipation, (I knew that), indigestion, piles bronchitis asthma, and high blood pressure. There is a couple of millenia of anecdotal evidence that figs are an aphrodisiac too. (male or female or both?)
From the White on Rice Couple, Todd Porter and Diane Cu, we have this cool and very easy dish; baked figs with bacon, blue cheese, roasted nuts. Todd and Diane are based out of Orange County in SoCal, and I think my friend who lives out there will like this recipe.
Baked Figs With Bacon, Blue Cheese, Roasted Nuts
Teighan Gerard hails from Silverthorne, Colerado, and there must be a lot of figs there too. Teighan, (aka Half Baked Harvest), always has fabulous-looking salads, and this one is no exception; nectarine and fried mozzarella caprese salad, (there are figs too).
Nectarine & Fried Mozzarella Caprese Salad
For a cool mixture of sweet and savoury in an allergen-free recipe, Heather Christo has this couscous salad with currants, figs, and pistachios. Great to make too much and take the leftovers to the office for lunch.
Couscous Salad With Currants, Figs, & Pistachios
I don’t drink these days, but I still enjoy booze in cooking, and I think pork tenderloin is such a great cut. Add some figs to that and we have bourbon fig & gorgonzola stuffed pork tenderloin, thanks to Jessica Merchant at How Sweet It Is.
Bourbon Fig & Gorgonzola Stuffed Pork Tenderloin
This is such a classic dish, either as an appetiser, or as a party staple, and I’d forgotten all about it until I was writing this post. So, thanks to Andrea at Cooking with a Wallflower, we have bacon wrapped figs. (The good news is these are zero carbs and do your digestion the power of good.)
Bacon Wrapped Figs
I know a girl who will love this dish, and I promise her this is the most exotic easy appetiser ever, or a great snack. So from Cooking Without Limits I strongly recommend that ‘the girl riding shotgun’ tries these pears and figs with blue cheese.
Pears And Figs With Blue Cheese
Finally for this week, something classic and simple ~ from the Perth Hills in Western Australia, Ros at Cooking up the Pantry, has this great fig and macadamia salad with labne. (Labne is marinated yogurt balls.) ((I may try this with almonds instead of macadamia…))
Fig And Macadamia Salad With Labne
Thanks ever so much to all the great cooks featured in this week’s Food on Friday
Say No to wheat flour. A couple of days ago I bought a garlic baguette, the first bread I’d eaten in months. The anticipation was much better than the actuality. So, as an alternative to stodgy bread, (or other wheat products), why not try lettuce as a vehicle for meat / fish / protein? And in the hotter parts of the world, lettuce is so much more refreshing that carb-rich bread. Ergo, lettuce wraps and cups are on the menu today.
From Southern California, Todd Porter & Dian Cu, the White On Rice Couple, there’s these nice looking lettuce wraps with almond-basil chicken. This is a pretty easy 30 minute dish for a lighter dinner, and a great lunch to take to work the following day.
Also from Todd and Diane, (lettuce wraps are a great dish for hot and sunny Orange County), we have Thai larb chicken lettuce cups. (One reason I’m reposting this this is that I think I got the link wrong in a previous Food on Friday.)
Thai Larb Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Another cooling dish I think my American friends will love, from Jessica Merchant at How Sweet It Is, bbq chicken and pineapple lettuce wraps with cilantro yogurt sauce. There’s also a healthy serving of avocado in this recipe.
BBQ Chicken & Pineapple Lettuce Wraps with Cilantro Yogurt Sauce
I haven’t featured Ree, The Pioneer Woman, for a while. But, you have just got to look at this post for a step by step easy introduction to lettuce wraps. Cool
Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Teighan Gerard has a different recipe here, one that I must try because I love slow-roasted pork. Half Baked Harvest gives us Korean pineapple pork lettuce wraps ~ seriously good, and seriously good to take to work the following day.
Korean Pineapple Pork Lettuce Wraps
English girl Petra, (aka Food Eat Love), has these lovely little recipe for a salmon lettuce wrap with potato salad and wasabi peas. That should be a spicy wrap.
And, finally for this week, Chungah Rhee has a copy-cat recipe you can make in 20 minutes, Chang’s chicken lettuce wraps. These look damn delicious. ha ha ha ~ same old joke again. Jeez.
A big thank you to all the great cooks featured today.