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Cauliflower Salad “Madras”

Cauliflower Salad “Madras”

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Before  anybody get’s their knickers in a twist about “real” Curries, let me explain something.
Many years ago, whenever we used commercially available, pre-mixed curry powder in Europe, more often than not, the name of the dish included the moniker “Madras”. This made it clear to everyone and all that the dish contained stock, curry powder, cream, some fruit, and flour. There were also salads and cold appetizers using curry powder, which mostly also used to end up being called “Madras”.
Almost nobody had ever tasted a real curry, much less cooked one, so the “classique” French way of preparing “curry sauce”, (sauce au curry à l’indienne) was usually utilized.
Hence – “Madras” or Indian Style. 🙂

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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here to read about  Commercial Curry Powder  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here to learn how to cook  Authentic” Curry Sauce  on  ChefsOpinion
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Cauliflower Salad “Madras”

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Cauliflower Salad “Madras”

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Cauliflower Salad “Madras”

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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One For The Kid’s # 6 – Banana/Walnut Cake With Figs, Raspberry Jam & Nutella

One For The Kid’s # 6 – Banana/Walnut Cake With Figs, Raspberry Jam & Nutella

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“ONE FOR THE KIDS”  is a series of Goodies which are wonderful treats for kids of all ages . They are super easy to prepare so you can ask your little ones to give you a helping hand in the production, which will make them proud and add even more happiness to a wonderful treat 🙂
(Here I used a store-bought banana walnut cake, because you don’t want to have the little ones to labor over the elaborate cake preparations).
In my area, there are many grocery chains and bakeries who sell great banana walnut cake. However, if you prefer to make your own, below is a link to a super easy recipe I’ve used in the past and which I found to give excellent results.
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !

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One For The Kid’s # 6 – Banana/Walnut Cake With Figs, Raspberry Jam & Nutella

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One For The Kid’s # 6 – Banana/Walnut Cake With Figs, Raspberry Jam & Nutella

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Schnitzel vom Schweinerücken „Zigeuner Art“

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One of my first childhood memories involving food is about Schnitzel. When visiting a restaurant with my parents in my earliest years, more often than not at least one person of the family/group at the table ordered a schnitzel, sometimes everybody. There was a wide variety of schnitzel available, even in the most simple and down to earth “Gasthaus” (Inn), served with spaetzle, noodles, knoedel, potato salad, rice, mashed potato, mixed salad, rolls or just plain farmers-bread.
It could be sauteed or fried; with elaborate garnish (Hollsteiner Art), complicated or simple sauce, or breaded (Wiener Art).
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Excerpt from Wiki:
“A schnitzel is meat, usually thinned by pounding with a meat tenderizer, that is fried in some kind of oil or fat. The term is most commonly used to refer to meats coated with flour, beaten eggs and bread crumbs, and then fried, but some variants such as Walliser Schnitzel are not breaded. Originating in Austria, the breaded schnitzel is popular in many countries and made using either vealmuttonchickenbeefturkey, reindeer, or pork. It is very similar to the French dish escalope, and the milanesa of Uruguay and Argentina.”
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P.S.
Read more (a lot more 🙂 ) about Schnitzel at the bottom of this page !
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Preparation :
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Excerpt from Wiki:

Worldwide schnitzels

The English term schnitzel means in general all types of breaded, fried flat pieces of meat. Due to the similarity between schnitzel and escalope, in many of the countries listed below, people sometimes refer to schnitzels as escalope, and vice versa.

South America

In the countries of ArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileParaguayPeruUruguay, and Venezuela, this dish is called milanesa.

Australia

Beef (which may be veal) and chicken schnitzel are both very popular dishes in Australia, particularly in pubs where they are among the most widely available meals. Chicken schnitzel (less so beef) is also sold at many take-away establishments.

Schnitzel in Australia is often served in the form of the parmigiana, which is a schnitzel topped with Italian tomato sauce, cheese, and occasionally ham.

At pubs, schnitzel is typically accompanied by chips (French fries), salad, and sometimes bacon. Plain and parmigiana schnitzels are sometimes respectively known by colloquial names “Schnitty”, “Schnitter”, and “Parma” or “Parmie”.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

In Bosnia and Herzegovina, the dish is called Bečka Šnicla or Bečki Odrezak (Bečki = “Viennese”; Šnicla = transliteration of German Schnitzel) and is made of veal or beef and usually served with mashed potatoes. Common garnishes include a slice of lemon or some lettuce.

Brazil

In Brazil, such preparations, designated à milanesa (Milanese-style), are quite common, especially in the more European-influenced southern half of the country. The meats of choice are beef or chicken, while veal and pork are relatively rare.

Bulgaria

Called шницел (shnitsel), it is made from ground veal, formed as a thin patty, seasoned with salt and black pepper, then breaded and fried. The dish usually is served with a choice of mashed or roasted potatoes, French fries, or simply a tomato salad. It is common at truck stops, and it is usually ordered à la carte, coming with a lemon wedge, but one can also find it in the frozen sections in supermarkets or premade and ready to cook.

China

In Shanghai, 炸猪排 (pronounced “Zha Zhu Pai” in Mandarin, “Za Zi Ba” in Shanghainese), literally a fried pork chop, is made by a piece of pork, beaten, floured and breaded then fried. It is usually served with Worcestershire Sauce, 辣酱油 (“La Jiang You”). Although originally a western cuisine, it is widely available as a street snack in Shanghai.

Colombia

Schnitzel presentations are called chuleta in Colombia. They are composed of flat pieces of chicken, veal, or mostly pork, covered with flour, and then deep-fried. The chuleta is a traditional dish of the Valle del Cauca region.

Croatia

In Croatia, the dish is called Bečki odrezak (šnicl) (Bečki = “Viennese”; šnicl = transliteration of German Schnitzel) and it is made of pork and served with French fries. Common garnishes include a slice of lemon or some lettuce. A similar dish is called Zagrebački odrezak (šnicl) (a variation on cordon bleu).

Czech Republic

Schnitzel is also very popular in the Czech Republic, where it is known as a smažený řízek or just řízek, and is made of pork, chicken, or veal. It is often served with boiled or mashed potatoes or potato salad. It also used to be—and to some degree still is—a typical packed lunch for day trips, when it was consumed with bread (often between two slices of bread as a sandwich). During the communist period, a deep-fried breaded hard cheese called smažený sýr (literally, “fried cheese”) became popular, mainly among the youth and students, especially served with tartar sauce, a slice of lemon, and boiled new potatoes with melted butter and parsley greens.

Denmark

In Denmark, the dish is called skinkeschnitzel when made of pork and wienerschnitzel when made of veal, and is usually served with fried potatoes, gravy, green or snow peas, and a “boy” (dreng in Danish) consisting of a lemon slice topped with capershorseradish, and a slice of anchovy.

Egypt

In Egypt, the dish is called Boftek. It is made of veal, and is usually served with pasta, rice, or greens.

Finland

In Finland, the dish called Wieninleike (“Viennese cutlet”), is almost always made of pork, breaded and fried like the original. It is usually served with French fries, potato mash, or wedge potatoes. A slice of lemon, a slice of anchovy, and a few capers are placed on top of the cutlet. Usually, the dish also includes a small amount of salad made from fresh vegetables. The dish was extremely popular between the end of the Second World War and the 1990s, when it could be found in virtually any low-end restaurant across Finland. In the past decades, its popularity has been dimmed by the rise of fast food.

However Wieninleike and its different variations remain a staple of menus in virtually any non-ethnic or fine dining restaurant in Finland. Lunch restaurants, different highway resting places and restaurants attached to gas stations are most prominently associated with this type of menu in Finland.

  • Wieninleike served typically with slice of lemon, anchovy, and caper
  • Floridanleike served with fried peach and served with Béarnaise sauce
  • Havaijinleike served with fried pineapple
  • Holsteininleike served with egg, anchovy, and caper
  • Metsästäjänleike served with mushroom sauce
  • Oskarinleike served with choron-sauce, shrimps or lobster, and asparagus
  • Oopperaleike served with fried egg
  • Sveitsinleike is filled with smoked ham and Emmentaler cheese

Typically all dishes above are prepared out of pork.

Germany

In GermanySchnitzel is usually made of pork, although turkey and veal are also common. It is usually served with French fries, potato mash, or wedge potatoes. The dish has been extremely popular since the end of the Second World War.

In German-speaking countries, the term Schnitzel means cutlets in general, not just breaded, fried ones.

  • Jägerschnitzel (hunter’s schnitzel) is a schnitzel with mushroom sauce. Depending on the region of Germany and personal taste, it may or may not be breaded. (Jägerschnitzel may also refer to an eastern German variant made of Jagdwurst, which originated in the former East Germany.)
  • Münchner Schnitzel (Munich schnitzel) is a variation on the Wiener Schnitzel prepared with horseradish and/or mustard before coating in flour, egg and bread crumbs.
  • Naturschnitzel (natural schnitzel) is a peppered and salted schnitzel with no sauce or only a simple sauce (e.g., pan drippings, to which sour cream may be added).
  • Pariser Schnitzel is similar to a Wiener Schnitzel but is floured and fried in an egg batter without breadcrumbs.
  • Rahmschnitzel (cream schnitzel) is a schnitzel with a cream sauce, often containing some mushrooms.
  • Vegetarisches Schnitzel (vegetarian schnitzel) is a meatless pattie made from soytofu, or seitan.
  • “Walliser Schnitzel” is a variant most popular in Switzerland in which the meat is not breaded, but is fried in oil and then coated with tomato sauce and raclette cheese.
  • Wiener Schnitzel (Viennese schnitzel) is a veal schnitzel thinned with a meat tenderizer, dusted with flour, battered with beaten eggs, and coated with bread crumbs and then fried.
  • Zigeunerschnitzel (gypsy schnitzel) is a schnitzel with a zigeuner sauce containing tomato, bell peppers, and onion slices. This schnitzel is also called Paprikaschnitzel (bell pepper schnitzel).
  • Kalb Schnitzel (Veal schnitzel) is a veal schnitzel pounded flat with a meat tenderizer, dusted with flour, battered with beaten eggs, and coated with bread crumbs and then fried in butter.

Hungary

Hungarian schnitzel with nokedli

Due to the strong Austrian influence of the Austro-Hungarian era, Wiener schnitzel is very popular in Hungary, known as bécsi szelet (Viennese slice), borjú bécsi(Viennese veal) or rántott hús (breaded meat). It is served in restaurants, and is a common meal in Hungarian homes, prepared often on Sundays or for festivities with spätzle, French fries, mashed potatoes, or rice. Alternatively, green peas or other vegetables can be used as side dish. Bread and salad (or pickles) often accompany the meal. Some restaurants offer the cordon bleu variant, a slice of schnitzel rolled and filled with cheese and ham.

India

In India, it is simply known as Kabob, meat that is beaten and layered in flour and masalas and pan seared.

Iran

Schnitzel is popular in Iran, where it is known as shenitsel (Persianشنیتسل‎‎). Thought to have been introduced in Persia during the World Wars, shenitsel is usually thicker, bigger, spicier, and fried with a more crispy breading than the standard schnitzel. It is customarily served with lemon, French fries, and a variety of boiled vegetables.

Another Iranian dish, kotlet (Persianکتلت‎‎), should not be confused with shenitsel. They are small, oval-shaped patties made by deep-frying a mix of ground meat, onion, potato, and herbs.

Israel

Israeli schnitzel

In Israel the dish is called Schnitzel (Hebrewשניצל‎‎, shnitsel, or rarely as Hebrewכתיתה‎‎, ktita). It is a very popular food in Israeli cuisine. The meat is typically chicken or turkey breast, in conformance with dietary kashrut laws, which do not allow pork to be used. Additionally, clarified butter, the preferred cooking fat for Austrian Wiener Schnitzel, is impermissible for kosher use, as it is a dairy product forbidden from use with meat; vegetable oils are therefore preferred. Before frying, the schnitzel is coated with a mixture of beaten eggs and bread crumbs, sometimes spiced with paprika or sesame seeds. The Israeli schnitzel is usually served with mashed potatoes, French fries, rice, or pasta, accompanied by ketchuphummus, or vegetable salad.

The schnitzel tradition was brought to Israel by Ashkenazi Jews coming from Europe, among them some of German origin. During the early years of the state of Israel, veal was not obtainable,[citation needed] and chicken or turkey proved to be inexpensive and tasty substitutes. Packaged schnitzels are widely available from the frozen food section in most supermarkets. Some frozen schnitzels are breaded patties made from processed chicken or turkey meat, not whole poultry breasts.

Schnitzel is also sold inside a pita, alongside hummus, French fries and vegetable salad, in a similar way to falafel. Many falafel stands also offer a schnitzel in a pita.

Japan

Tonkatsu

Japanese tonkatsu (豚カツ lit. “pork cutlet”) consists of a flattened pork loin, lightly seasoned, coated in flour, dipped in beaten egg, coated with panko crumbs and finally deep fried. Tonkatsu is often served as an accompaniment to ramen or udon or featured with curry and rice.

Pork tonkatsu was invented in Japan in 1899 at a restaurant called Rengatei in Tokyo.It was originally considered a type of yōshoku—Japanese versions of European cuisine invented in the late 19th and early 20th centuries—and was called katsuretsu (cutlet) or simply katsu. Variations include the use of pork fillet (hirekatsu), chicken (chicken katsu), beef (gyūkatsu), ham (hamukatsu) and minced meat (menchi-katsu).

Korea

In Korean cuisine, pork (donkasu, from Japanese tonkatsu), chicken (chickenkasu), and beef (beefkasu) cutlets are popular. The most common types of donkasu are “kyeongyangsik”(경양식; Western-style) and “ilbonsik”(일본식; Japanese-style).

Republic of Macedonia

In the Republic of Macedonia, the dish called шницла (shnitzla) is a piece of beef seasoned with salt and black pepper, breaded and fried. Typically, it is served with mashed or fried potatoes with green salad garnish.

Mexico

Mexican milanesa

In Mexico, this dish, called milanesa or carne empanizada, consists of a thin slice of beef, chicken, veal, or sometimes pork, and even eggplant or soy. Each slice is dipped into beaten eggs, seasoned with salt, and other condiments according to the cook’s taste (like parsley and garlic). Each slice is then dipped in bread crumbs (or occasionally flour) and shallow-fried in oil, one at a time. Some people prefer to use very little oil and then bake them in the oven as a healthier alternative.

Namibia

Schnitzel, both chicken and pork, is common in Namibia due to the German colonial history. A majority of the restaurants in Windhoek, Walvis Bay, and Swakopmund offer it on their menus, often topped with a fried egg and accompanied by potato salad. It is often eaten in a Brötchen (German sandwich roll) with tomatoes, cheese, and other dressing.

Netherlands

In The Netherlands (and Belgium) the schnitzel, mostly made of pork is very popular. Mostly served with fries and vegetable salad. Also very popular is the ‘Zigeunerschnitzel’, served with paprika. A typical Dutch variant is the ‘gehaktschnitzel’, a schnitzel made of minced meat. Very popular too is the ‘Cordon blue’ (Blue ribbon). In Holland every butcher has his own variants.

Poland

Kotlet schabowy is a classical and most popular recipe for boneless pork chop or pork tenderloin. It is also made from chicken.

Portugal

In Portugal, schnitzel is called bife panado or just panado (“breaded”). Different varieties of panado can be made with chicken (panado de frango), turkey (panado de peru), pork (costeleta panada for pork chop, febra panada for pork without bone), or veal (escalope de vitela panado). The meat is usually seasoned with black pepper, garlic, and lemon juice. It is commonly served with spaghetti, fried potatoes, or rice (plain or with beans). It is also popular as a sandwich, served in a bun with lettuce (sandes de panado).

Romania

Romanian șnițel (pronounced [‘ʃni.t͡sel]) is very common in restaurants, fast-food places, and homes across the country. Normally served simple and unadorned, the fast food version is differentiated by being served sandwich/burger style. Cordon bleu șnițel (made from pork loin stuffed with cheese and ham) is also very popular. The Romanian șnițel is made in the same manner as the Austrian one, but as a local characteristic is made of almost any type of meat (chicken, pork, veal or beef).

A specialty from western Romania is the mosaic șnițel made of two thin meat layers (usually each layer of different meat) and a vegetable (usually mushroom) filling. Also a recipe for șnițel de ciuperci, a mushroom fritter, is common.

Russia

In Russia, the dish is called отбивная (otbivnaya), which literally means a piece of meat that has been beaten. Russian cuisine includes recipes of schnitzel prepared from pork, as well as beef, veal, and chicken.

Serbia

In Serbia, the dish is called bečka šnicla (Viennese schnitzel). A local urban legend states the dish originated in Serbia and not in Austria, but no one can say why. In Serbia, word Schnitzel is used to describe for any cutlet, not just breaded meat.

Slovakia

Schnitzel is highly popular in Slovakia, a country bordering Austria, where it is referred to as vyprážaný rezeň. or simply rezeň (in the Western parts colloquially also schnitzel). It is often made of pork or chicken, and is typically served with fried potatoes (not peeled), boiled potatoes, mashed potatoes, fries (especially in canteens), potato salad, or rice.

Slovenia

Schnitzel is called dunajski zrezek, meaning Viennese-style cutlets (Vienna is Dunaj in Slovenian). It is served with sauerkraut and boiled potatoes. Restaurants serving the dish can be found throughout the country, though typically it is made of pork or chicken. In Slovenia, a similar dish is called ljubljanski zrezek (after Ljubljana, the country’s capital).

South Africa

Schnitzels are popular in South Africa, due to the European heritage in the country. Chicken schnitzels and cordon bleu schnitzels are a common item on most restaurant menus and hospitals, and in recent years, beef and pork schnitzels have also become widely available.

Spain

Schnitzel in Spain is escalope empanado and is usually made with veal. For generations it was enjoyed, together with potato omelets, on family picnics in the countryside.

Sudan

In Sudan, the dish called buftek is made of veal or fish, and is usually served with rice and salad or as a sandwich.

Sweden

In Sweden, the dish is called schnitzel or Wienerschnitzel, and is made most commonly of pork, and is often decorated with a caper-filled circle of either genuine anchovies or the Swedish “fake” ansjovis (made of brine-cured sprats). It is served with rice, fries, or boiled potatoes, and green peas.

Switzerland

Schnitzel, Schnipo, Wienerschnitzel, and Rahmschnitzel are all popular dishes in Switzerland. Schnipo (a schnitzel and fried potato combination) is quite popular.The Rahmschnitzel version is made with either veal or pork and topped with a cream sauce, sometimes including mushrooms. The cordon bleu variant of schnitzel – two slices of schnitzel (or one with a pocket) filled with cheese, typically Emmentaler or Gruyere, and a slice of ham – is also popular in Switzerland.

Turkey

In Turkey, the dish is spelled schnitzel, şinitzel, or şnitzel, and pronounced in a similar way to German. It is made of chicken, and is usually served with rice, French fries, or pasta. Sometimes, it may have grilled cheese in it. It is often cooked at home, as it is an easy-to-do kind of food, but most restaurants have it on their menus.

Ukraine

In West Ukraine (former Habsburg Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria), it is known as шніцель shnitsel′; in the rest of the country, it is called as відбивна vidbyvna. It is usually made of pork, or sometimes chicken.

United States

The pork tenderloin sandwich, popular in the Midwest, is made from a breaded pork tenderloin and is very similar to schnitzel. Chicken fried steak, similar to country fried steak, is another name for schnitzel, especially in the southern states. It is usually served with white gravy (“country gravy”), which is the type of gravy used in “Sausage Gravy over Biscuits” but without the sausage in it.

Similar foods

Other variants of the schnitzel, not all necessarily made with a bread crumb crust, include:

  • Escalope: A piece of boneless meat that has been thinned out using a mallet, rolling pin, or beaten with the handle of a knife, or merely ‘butterflied’. Although it is usually a thinner cut of meat than found in a schnitzel, the meat of an escalope is also usually coated with flour, beaten eggs and bread crumbs, and then fried.
  • Cordon bleu: “Blue ribbon” is a thinly pounded piece of meat stuffed with cheese and ham.
  • Valdostana: Very similar to the cordon bleu, but cheese and ham are not inside but on the top, this dish is from an alpine region in Italy, the Val d’Aosta.
  • Chicken Kiev is unpounded chicken breast rolled around butter and sometimes garlic, then breaded and cooked in a manner similar to Cordon Bleu.
  • Milanesa Napolitana: This River Plate variant, very popular in Argentina and Uruguay, is made from a beef schnitzel topped with ham, marinara sauce (tomato and garlic), and local mozzarella, then grilled to melt the cheese, usually served with French fries (British – chips).
  • Singapore Hainanese pork chop: Served in a gravy with tomatoes, potato wedges, onions and peas, it can be enjoyed with steamed rice and chilli sauce.
  • Piccata is breaded meat like schnitzel.
  • Chicken fingers are chicken breast strips breaded and fried similar to schnitzel.
  • Chicken fried steak is a piece of cube steak coated with seasoned flour, and pan-fried. Popular in the southern United States, it is typically served covered in white gravy.
  • Parmo is popular in north-east England, particularly Teesside; it is covered in bechamel sauce and served with chips and salad.
  • (Cotoletta alla) Milanese A dish very similar to the Wiener Schnitzel, but fried in butter instead of vegetable oil.”

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Tlaxcaltotopochtl Y Ensalada De Camaron Con Aguacate

Tlaxcaltotopochtl Y Ensalada De Camaron Con Aguacate

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“Totopos With Shrimp And Avocado Salad”.
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The name  totopo  comes from the Aztec word tlaxcaltotopochtl. It is a combination of the word for a tortilla, tlaxcalli, and the word for thunder.
Combined, it means “tortillas that are noisy to chew”.
Originally, totopos are prepared with corn tortillas. They can be fried, as I have done here, or baked or toasted.
However, I sometimes make totopos with flour tortillas, which makes them lighter and, of course, results in a different, more delicate flavor.
They pair perfectly with this refreshing shrimp and avocado salad and make for a wonderful, tasty snack or appetizer.
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Tlaxcaltotopochtl Y Ensalada De Camaron Con Aguacate

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Tlaxcaltotopochtl Y Ensalada De Camaron Con Aguacate

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Tlaxcaltotopochtl Y Ensalada De Camaron Con Aguacate

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Tlaxcaltotopochtl Y Ensalada De Camaron Con Aguacate

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Preparation :
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Faux Chicken Biryani


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It looks like biryani.
It tastes like biryani.
It smells like biryani.
Alas, it’s not biryani.
As usual when I cook for Bella and myself, a few days ago I cooked too much jasmin rice. The next day, my usual train of thought at first led me to either one of two leftover dishes – fried rice or congee. But I did not really feel like either one of those, so my next choice was this very easy to prepare “faux biryani”.
While a “real biryani is easy enough to prepare, this one was even easier and of course, with the pre-cooked rice at hand, this was the perfect way to utilize the rice and at the same time get a dish that is wonderful, flavorful and beautiful. Naturally, the texture of the rice was different from the real deal, (not inferior, just different), but nevertheless, the dish was a great success, fully enjoyed by Bella and myself 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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P.S.
Usually, one would steep the saffron in ghee, but because of the relatively high-fat content of the chicken skin which will render into the dish, I replaced the ghee with milk.
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Faux Chicken Biryani

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Faux Chicken Biryani

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Faux Chicken Biryani

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Faux Chicken Biryani

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Preparation :
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Baby Octopus In Black Bean/Oyster Sauce On A Crisp Egg Noodle Pillow

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Baby Octopus In Black Bean/Oyster Sauce On A Crisp Egg Noodle Pillow

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Visiting my Asian food store is such a great food shopping experience. I usually go to stock up on sauces, Asian noodles, special veggies and the occasional specialty item I can’t find at my regular hunting grounds.
However, as it is usually the case when I go shopping for “just a few things, necessities”, I always end up buying too much stuff I did not set-out to get. That’s how I ended up with 2,5 lbs flash-frozen baby octopus, without a plan (yet) how to prep them. Alas, it really does not matter for me how baby octopus (or any other octopus, for that matter), is prepared, I love them any which way – so, or so, or so 🙂
Lately, I ate grilled steak and sautéed meat cuts with potatoes and rice quite often, so it was time to go back to pasta and lots of good sauce. Here now is how these tiny, frozen, beautiful creatures transformed into a most lovely dish, served over a heavenly  “crisp on the outside, soft on the inside”  egg noodle pillow 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Crispy Noodle Pillows  on  ChefsOpinion
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P.S.
I like my noodle pillows “crisp on the outside but soft on the inside”. If you prefer more crispness towards the center, cook the pillow in 3 cups of oil instead of the two tblsp I used here, and raise the temperature of the oil so the noodles are actually frying instead of sauteing, as I did here. (Either way, good stuff)  🙂
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Baby Octopus In Black Bean/Oyster Sauce On A Crisp Egg Noodle Pillow

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Baby Octopus In Black Bean/Oyster Sauce On A Crisp Egg Noodle Pillow

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Baby Octopus In Black Bean/Oyster Sauce On A Crisp Egg Noodle Pillow

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plate the crispy noodle pillow, top the pillow with the octopus and sauce, garnish with chives

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Soupe à l’oignon gratinée (French Onion Soup)

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Soupe à l’oignon gratinée (French Onion Soup)

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Onion soup is a vegetable soup made of sauteed onions and stock. Onion soup was traditionally served in poorer households and lower-class restaurants.
Onion soup is, and was, found in many countries, prepared in many different variations. What all recipes have in common are the onions and stock. From there on, anything goes……….:
Added red or white wine, beer, egg yolk, flour, cream, cheese, herbs, bread, vinegar, sugar, caramelized onions, sauteed but kept-white onions, puréed onions, sliced onion, diced onions, shallots, sausages, sherry, carrots, and probably another thousand different additions, depending on where in the world you encounter your onion soup.
Names/variations include “Pfälzer Zwiebelsuppe”, “Soupe Soubise”, “Schwaebische Zwiebelsuppe”, “Cipollata”,  “Cherbah”, and countless more.
And then, of course, there is the queen of all onion soups! –
Known and loved most everywhere in the world, it is “French Onion Soup” (Soupe à l’oignon / Soupe d’oignons aux Halles/ Soupe à l’oignon gratinée)
What makes this variation so special is the addition of bread and gruyere to the top of the onion soup, then it get’s some time in the oven or under the broiler until the top is a bubbly, fragrant, addictive, gooey mass of melted bread and cheese.
Each heavenly spoonful should contain some of the bread and cheese, some soup, and some onions.
Voilà, now you know why “French Onion Soup” is the best onion soup in the world 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Soup  on  ChefsOpinion
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Soupe à l’oignon gratinée (French Onion Soup)

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Soupe à l’oignon gratinée (French Onion Soup)

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Soupe à l’oignon gratinée (French Onion Soup)

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Soupe à l’oignon gratinée (French Onion Soup)

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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Vanilla Crepes With Caramelized Blackberries & Pomegranate Seeds

Vanilla Crepes With Caramelized Blackberries & Pomegranate Seeds


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One
has to wonder:
Why are sweet or savory crepes not on everybody’s table at least once a week ???
I can’t recall to ever have met anybody who’d claim not to like crepes, either in its sweet or savory form, or both.
Crepes can be prepared easily by anybody, even by a child or somebody with two left hands. Even if one does not like to cook, these babies need all of a few minutes to prepare, are very economical and, have I said this already? – are easy and quick to prepare.
In its sweet, plain variation, just sprinkle some castor sugar on top and maybe a bit of whipped cream, and you have a great dessert or sweet snack.
It’s savory, plain version will make a quick meal by drizzling a bit of butter on top and serving them with a small salad on the side.
And then, you have the more elaborate stuff 🙂
Savory crepes can be filled with creamed or buttered mushrooms, vegetables, seafood, chicken, game meats, spicy sausages and a myriad of other, more or less fancy goodies.
Sweet crepes will be happy to be married to caramelized fruit, creams, chocolate sauce, puddings, cream cheese (blintzes anyone?), nutella, yogurt, nuts, etc, etc, etc.
I myself have prepared just about any combination of crepes and “stuff” under the sun. I don’t really have a favorite per se, I love ’em all 🙂
So here is a version of crepes with caramelized fruits. I have to admit that the blackberries and pomegranate are rather expensive, especially when you cook for a large family. But be assured, caramelized apples, pears, oranges, bananas, strawberries, or any other more economical fruit will be just as wonderful – yummy to taste and pretty to look at 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Vanilla Crepes With Caramelized Blackberries & Pomegranate Seeds

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Vanilla Crepes With Caramelized Blackberries & Pomegranate Seeds

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Vanilla Crepes With Caramelized Blackberries & Pomegranate Seeds

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Steak Salad – Recipe # 1379

Paintings below, including all the paintings displayed in the living room, are by Hans Susser (Soupi)
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Since I got old, occasionally my mind starts wandering aimlessly all over the place, sometimes I’ll get these “WOW” moments, when I realize the obvious………. 🙂 .
Such as this bonbon :
“When I create a dish I have not seen, prepared or eaten previously, it feels nearly the same as when I used to create a beautiful painting”.
I utilized canvas (the serving dish), paints (the ingredients), garnish/final-touch (the varnish) and, most important, a picture of a finished painting in my mind (a picture of a finished dish in my mind).
And there you have it – creativity, skills, and experience, applied to very different mediums 🙂
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(I used to paint in my spare time and was rather successful at selling my art for rather good $$$. Maria used to gold-, silver- and bronze-leaf the raw-wood frames for these paintings, as well as bespoke frames for other artist’s paintings.
For a few years, this provided us with a handsome, additional income, until I started my web business and, later on, this blog). 🙂
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But back to the present time and the dish at hand.
This steak salad recipe makes for a super delicious entrée for lunch or dinner, a light snack or anything else you want it to be (Buffet, anybody?).

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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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P.S.
Instead of the more traditional croutons, I used tarallini  (Small  Taralli , (sometimes marketed as “Italian Love Knots”)

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Duck and noodles – what’s not to like about that ? 🙂
Since I prepare roast duck often, duck soup is naturally on the menu just as much. Even just a few bones, skin, scraps, innards and the neck from one duck, added to chicken or vegetable stock and seasoning, is enough to prep a rich, tasty soup. Any veggie, pasta, even rice thrown-in, and you’ll be rewarded with a tasty and economical meal. You can also strain the stock and use it to fix a great congee for breakfast, just add some scallions and fried shallots and voilà, another satisfying quickie. ( Meal, that is ! ) 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for  ROAST DUCK – PART ONE – “DUCK WITH DIRTY NOODLES”

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Click here for more  Duck  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for  Congee  on  ChefsOpinion
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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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