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Bay Salt Prawns – Jamie Oliver

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on March 4, 2010

Great video of chef Jamie Oliver preparing some fresh and tasty prawns on the grill. Healthy and beautiful.

jamie oliver – my online videos.

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Posted in cooking, diet, food, grilling, recipes, Uncategorized, video | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

How-to Build a Small-space salad box

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on January 28, 2010

Enjoy easy access to fresh greens with this easy-to-build raised planter box.

How to grow vegetables at home – from Sunset.com. Learn how to build an easy-access planter via Small-space salad box – Main – How to grow vegetables – Sunset.com.

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Hulu – The Future Of Food – Watch the full feature film now.

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on January 28, 2010

The Future of Food

Hulu – The Future Of Food – Watch the full feature film now.

I found this film quite eye-opening. It’s surprising to see the sometimes devastating effects that farmers face as a result of the introduction of theses foods and suppliments.

The description reads: “The Future Of Food offers an in-depth investigation into the disturbing truth behind engineered foods that have quietly filled U.S. grocery store shelves for the past decade.”

What do you think?

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Feel-good foods for 2009 – Almonds

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on January 24, 2009

Throughout this year I will be posting articles inspired by a list published in the January 2009 issue of Sunset Magazine called “Feel-good foods of 2009.”  It speaks about good eats to incorporate into our diet for a healthier new year. First on the list – Almonds. Here is a brief background, along with nutritional benefits. The bulk of the information will be provided by Practically Edible – “The web’s biggest food encyclopaedia.”

http://www.practicallyedible.com/edible.nsf/list/Almonds?opendocument&keyword=Almonds#almonds

Almond blossom. Taken in Swifts Creek, Victoria in September 2008

Almond blossom. Taken in Swifts Creek, Victoria in September 2008

Almonds are members of the peach family. The tree blossoms in the spring before it grows leaves.

There are two kinds of Almonds, sweet and bitter. An Almond, technically, isn’t a nut — it’s the pit of a fruit related to peaches, plums and apricots. The Almond fruit is small, green and has soft, velvety fuzz on it; the fruit isn’t any good for eating, as it is tough and fibrous.

Sweet Almonds are usually blanched before use as the outer brown skin can in some people irritate their digestive tube. Some ground Almond packages sold may contain ground peach kernels to lessen the cost to the producer. Sweet Almonds are used both in meals and in desserts. If a recipe calls for Almonds, chances are it means Sweet Almonds.

Bitter Almonds are extremely poisonous when raw and untreated; it is illegal to sell them in their natural state in North America, though their sale remains legal in the European Union. Only the oil and extract is sold. Their oil is mixed with hydrous ferrous sulfate, which reacts with the prussic acid in the Bitter Almonds and causes it to form calcium ferrocyanide crystals, which can be filtered out of the oil, making it safe.

Blanched Almonds have the brown skins removed from the nuts. The Almonds are scalded in boiling water, plunged into cold water, then put through rollers that rub the skin off. The nuts are then dried and packaged. Blanched Almonds cost more than unblanched because of the extra processing required, but not much more, and it’s almost always worth paying the extra to save yourself the fiddling at home.

If you are buying unshelled Almonds, ones that rattle a lot inside the shell have shrunk from aging, so you don’t want those.

Even if you have access to Almond trees, it’s not recommended to pick your own unless you truly know that they are sweet Almond trees and not ones that produce the bitter, poisonous Almonds. California now provides 60% of the world’s Almond production. In China, apricot kernels are often used instead of Almonds.

Cooking Tips
If your whole Almonds came with the skin on, or if you had to shell them, to remove the skin pour boiling water over them and let them soak for two minutes. Then drain, and rub the skin off. These are called Blanched Almonds.

To toast Almonds, spread them out on a baking sheet and then place on middle rack of oven preheated to 350F. You can toast slivers, halved or whole Almonds. If toasting sliced or slivered Almonds, watch them very closely as they can burn quite quickly. Toast about 5 minutes, then take out, toss, and return to oven until they are just turning a golden brown, about 15 minutes total, tops. Play close attention to them after about 12 minutes, as they can go from golden to burnt in a flash. Remove from oven, turn out onto a plate and let cool.

Almonds are often eaten on its own, raw or toasted. Along with other nuts, they are often sprinkled over desserts for an added crunch. Sweet almonds are used in marzipan, nougart, French macaroons, Financiers, baklava and other wonderful sweets.

Substitutes
Other nuts or seeds.

Nutrition
Almonds contain as much calcium as milk.

Bitter Almonds, when mixed with water, let off cyanide gas. For this reason, it is illegal to sell them as is in many parts of the world; you are restricted to selling only a treated extract from them.

Sweet almonds contain almost no carbohydrates, so they can be made into flour for cakes and cookies for low-carb diets. Almonds are also rich in Vitamin E and monounsaturated fat. Recent research shows that including almonds in the diet elevates the blood levels of high density lipoproteins (HDL) and lowered levels of low density lipoproteins (LDL).

Equivalents
1 pound unshelled Almonds = 1 to 1 1/4 cups shelled = 5 to 6 oz shelled = 150 -170g shelled
1 pound shelled Almonds = 450g shelled Almonds = 3 cups whole or halved = 3 1/3 cups chopped = 4 cups slivered or sliced

Storage
Packaged Almonds can be stored at room temperature for up to two years; even longer if refrigerated right from the start. Once opened, refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 months. If your Almonds turn yellowish, taste one: they may be getting quite old and rancid, in which case offer them to your neighbourhood birds or squirrels. Toasted Almonds can be frozen for up to 6 months.

History
The Almond tree is a native of western Asia and North Africa. Almonds were grown in ancient Egypt, and in Israel: they are mentioned in the Old Testament. The Greeks and Romans both grew Almonds and made oil from them. A Greek myth has the gods changing a disconsolate woman (Phyllis) into an Almond tree (probably the bitter kind). The Romans introduced the Almond tree into England during their settlement there.

Almonds
Mixed blanched almonds
– © Denzil Green

The Romans and Greeks believed that Bitter Almonds helped prevent you from becoming drunk, and this belief carried through the middle ages. This theory (noted by the writer Plutarch) may have led to the now out-of-fashion practice of serving salted Almonds with dinner.

Almonds have been found at Pompeii and under the Knossos palace in Crete.

During the Middle Ages, Almonds were an important trade commodity — Almond Milk was used in a great deal of cooking. It wasn’t until about 1562 that people in England began deliberately growing Almond trees, largely as garden plants for their blossoms. Yet Almonds were widely known. At the time of Shakespeare, “An Almond for a parrot” meant the height of temptation, perhaps bad temptation, as they must have noted that Bitter Almonds were not good for birdies.

Almond trees were brought to Spain and Portugal by the Moors; Spanish monks brought Almond trees to California.

Literature & Lore
Almond < Almande (Old English) < amande (French) < amandela (Latin) < amygdalus (Greek)

And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded Almonds. Numbers 17:8

Would I could meet that rogue Diomed! I would croak like a raven; I would bode, I would bode. Patroclus will give me any thing for the intelligence of this whore: the parrot will not do more for an Almond than he for a commodious drab. Thersites. Troilus and Cressida, V, 2. Shakespeare.

Also called: Prunus dulcis (Scientific Name) Amande (French) Mandel (German) Mandorla (Italian) Almendra (Spanish) Amêndoa (Portuguese) Badam (Indian)

Posted in baking, cooking, culture, diet, food, foodie, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Food-related Business Ideas

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on August 19, 2008

I have a bit of a dilema, and I could use some help.
I love food  Grin  I’ve gone to school for the Culinary Arts and have worked in the field for a few years. I currently own a gourmet gift business. I love my business, however, recently I’ve been feeling a bit unfulfilled.
I Love Baking! I Love Cooking! I love seeing the joy and satisfaction on people’s faces as they enjoy what I’ve created. That’s when I feel fully expressed and self-actualized. Unfortunately it’s hard to establish a food-related business in the State of Florida (lots of hoops and red tape and money 😦 ).
Does anyone have any ideas regarding food businesses I could look into? I don’t have a lot of resources to invest in starting something big like a restaurant, but, I welcome all suggestions.

Thanks so much. Look forward to hearing from you.

Posted in baking, cooking, food, foodie, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

The History of Butter

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on April 23, 2008

The word butter comes from the Greek word “bou-tyron”, which seems to mean “cowcheese.” It is also thought to be borrowed from the language of the Scythians, a northern tribe of horsemen. According to ancient histories, the Scythians considered butter so important that they employed blind slaves to produce it because they wouldn’t be distracted while churning the cream needed to make it.

Some historians believe that by the time the Scythians were traveling across the plains of Central Asia hundreds of years before Christ, butter had already been in existence for millennia. Abraham, went visited by the three angels and told he would have a son named Isaac, served them butter and cakes and meat [Genesis 18 v 1-8]. It was used to flavor the breads of the Pharaohs in Ancient Egypt. It was also used to treat wounds and burns by the Romans. The first documented mention of butter making occurred around 1,500 – 2,000 BC in the sacred writings of Asiatic India dwellers. Back then, butter was not only used as food, but also as an illumination oil, for medicinal purposes, and as a coating for the skin to protect tribe members from the bitter winter cold.

In India, clarified butter is called ghee. According to Hindu mythology, and mythologies the world over, butter symbolizes semen; and churning represents both the sexual act and the formation of a child in the womb. To make ghee, butter is melted and simmered long enough to extract all the water, leaving the anhydrous butter fat. During the process, it takes on a buttery taste. By removing the albuminous (simple heat-coagulable water-soluble proteins which occur in milk and other animal substances) curd and water that favor the growth of organisms that promote spoilage, ghee does not become rancid as easily or readily as butter. It can also be stored unrefrigerated for several months.

Butter is made by churning cream until it reaches a semi-solid state. By U.S. law, butter must be at least 80 percent milk fat. It may be artificially colored with annato and carotene; it may also be salted. Unsalted butter contains absolutely no salt. Salt acts as a preservative and, because unsalted butter contains none, it is more perishable than salted butter and should be stored in the freezer section. To store butter, wrap airtight and refrigerate for up to 1 month (regular butter) or up to 2 weeks (unsalted). It can also be frozen for up to 6 months.

I am currently searching for relevant pictures to include with this post. Please bear with me.

References:

http://webexhibits.org/butter/

The Butter Board –

http://www.naturalandtasty.co.uk/history_butter.htm

Food For Life Global –

http://www.ffl.org/ffl_pf_real_milk.php

Epicurious.com –

http://www.epicurious.com/tools/fooddictionary/search?query=butter

Posted in baking, cooking, food, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

Temptation – Evil!

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on October 24, 2007

Temptation comes in the sweetest disguises with the sweetest of intentions, doesn’t it. For example, someone I work with just brought back some leftover baked goods from a meeting she just attended. I am currently on Weight Watchers and I know that I shouldn’t indulge in this kind of food. Then again, WW does allow us the 35 extra points if such a situation like this occurs. Hhmmmmm what do you think? Should I succomb, just a little bit? They look so good, too! Mmmmmm. Help!

Posted in diet, food, foodie, Uncategorized, weight watchers | 1 Comment »

6th Annual Jamaican Jerk Festival

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on September 27, 2007

This year’s Jamaican Jerk Festival was held on Sunday, Sept. 23rd at Markham Park in Sunrise, FL. It featured activities and attractions for the entire family.

The main attraction was the Food Court, which featured a wonderful variety of jerk foods from an array of vendors. Options included jerk chicken, pork, lobster, fried fish, even jerk ice cream! The versatility of this wonderful seasoning is endless.

       Boston Jerk       Jerk Shack      New Flavor

One of the Caribbean’s favorite pastimes, cricket, was also on display. Jamaica vs. Barbados 20/20 teams, lead by former West Indian cricket stars, engaged in competition organized by the South Florida Cricket Alliance.

Cricket match          More cricket

Air Jamaica, one of the event’s sponsors, brought its champion netball team to compete against the all-star Florida team. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to stay long enough to hear the results.

The Jerk Cook-off was also very popular. It featured top chefs creating innovatve jerk recipes; competing for cash and bragging rights, not to mention a chance to win the coveted Gold Dutch Pot trophy.

Cook-off awards

Celebrity judges included local television anchor Dwight Lauderdale, Food Network’s Throw Down winner Nigel Spence, and the Gleanor’s Barbara Ellington.

Jamaicans are not only talented at preparing wonderful food, they’re also very talented at presenting folk and oral performances. There was poetry presentations, familiar folk songs, book readings, and live music. The most impressive performance for me was that of Ms. Nadje Leslie, a world champion violinist. She performed classic Jamaican tunes with a great new twist.

           Nadje Leslie         Nadje Leslie2

The Main Stage featured the red hot sounds of Byron Lee and the Dragonaires, an absolute legend and ambassodor of Jamaican for over 40 years. Other performers included soca singer Allison Hinds, Jazz & Reggae guitarist Eugene Grey, up and coming artistes and more.

There were rides and games for the kids, local radio stations providing the latest dance music as well as classic hits, and I certainly can’t forget about the Domino competition in the Island Bar. And when it comes to Jamaicans, dominoes is always hot!

Jerk Bar      Domino Competition        Domino 2

Looking forward to next year’s Festival. Until then, here are some more pictures from the event.

Crowds at the Fest      More crowds     Folk Revue  

Khrisan Grant - Little Miss Jamaica Florida 2007

     

 

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Florida Restaurant & Lodging Show

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on September 13, 2007

On Saturday Sept. 8th, I attended the second day of the 3-day Florida Restaurant & Lodging Show at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando. The venue was packed with over 14,000 attendees and showcased 550 exhibiting companies spanning almost 100,000 square feet.

Dubbed as a “must-see” event for professionals in the southeast restaurant and lodging industry, the Show launched a number of new features this year. The newest was the Ferdinand Metz Foodservice Forum, admission to which was included in your pass. The Forum sessions educated restaurant owners on all aspects of running a successful foodservice business – uncovering new trends, increasing revenue and customer loyalty, lowering costs, delivering optimal customer service, minimizing risk, and much more.

Another exciting event was the PMQ’s Orlando Pizza Show. It served as a showcase for all pizza-related products and services and attracted owners, managers, and other restaurant professionals. It also hosted the annual U.S. Pizza Team Trials competition. Each year pizza makers and acrobats compete to represent the industry in the World Pizza Championships in Salsomaggiore, Italy. America’s “best” pizza maker was selected at the Orlando Pizza Show.  

Returning to the Show was the Ultimate Barista Challenge USA, organized by Whole Cup Coffee Consulting. The audience was treated to an exhibition of coffee creativity as the barista presented personally inspired espresso beverages to a panel of highly qualified judges. A barista is someone who demonstrates his/her knowledge of and passion for coffee to customers on a daily basis in cafes, restaurants, and coffee bars around the world. This was a challenging and exciting competition that impressed both chefs and attendees alike.

The Florida Restaurant & Lodging Show was organized by Reed Exhibitions, and sponsored by the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association. Photos of the event will be uploaded soon.

Update:

Photos from Florida Restaurant & Lodging Show

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Hello world!

Posted by culinarydelightsgb on August 26, 2007

I’m excited to be a part of WordPress.com. I’m new to blogging but I’ll try to bring interesting, informative and even entertaining articles to the site.

My passion in life is the culinary arts – learning about food, experimenting with recipes, trying new ideas, but most of all sharing really good food and drink with really good people.

Thanks for stopping by and keep checking for new material. 🙂

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