Irish Stew
Community

Winter in South/Autumn in North

 

When you have had a series of rainy days there is nothing better than a good hearty stew, and we can thank the Irish for the basis of the stew that I cooked this week, which satisfied 8 teenage appetites.

We can also thank the Naxon company in Chicago for first developing a rudimentary slow cooker or Crock pot which has since been refined to the wonderful appliance we have today. This means the ingredients can be placed inside and albeit forgotten until hours later when the slow cooker has worked its magic and produced a tasty and nutritious meal completely without supervision. In the current supercharged world, this is a wonderful advantage and fantastic alternative to fast food dinners.

“Ever since man first tamed fire, slow cooking was discovered as a way to soften up and tenderize those tough slabs of meat and fibrous ‘root vegetables. In prehistoric times, indigenous peoples often cooked wild root plants in a slow burning fire pit for a full 24 hours. This released the nutrition locked into the bulbs and made them much more tender and tastier to eat. Tough meat cuts especially benefit from slow cooking. Slow cooking these chewy cuts broke down the collagen in the meat and turned it into a gelatinous broth. As the fibers of the meat separated and shrunk during slow cooking, the juices would moisten the meat and turn even the toughest cuts into a mouth watering meal.” (click here to read more)

Family Stew Recipe

♠ Place a selection of diced vegetables in the base of the cooker, including:

3 sticks celery

3 onions

3-4 carrots

1 capsicum (green)

3-4 small new potatoes

I also add the following for flavour:

1 swede or rutabaga

1 turnip

1 parsnip

2 zucchini

You can also throw in any leftover vegetable you have in your fridge; Spinach or Silverbeet leaves or corn kernels might be nice.

♦ On top of the vegetables place diced Mutton chops or Blade steak (I use blade myself)

(trimmed of excess fat)

♦ 2-3 cups of beef or chicken stock (I use chicken to avoid Mad Cow Contamination – but then I may be too paranoid)

♦ seasoning of your own choice

♦ 1 teaspoon thyme

♦ a few celery stalks with leaves intact

♦In the morning, set the Slow cooker to Auto for 6-8 hours, or Low for 8-10 hours. (Auto setting will simply adjust the cooking time from high initially to low in the later stages of the cooking time)   Cover and let it cook. When you come home in the evening, add:

♠1-2 cups frozen peas (or beans)

♦ 3 tablespoons cornflour mixed with 1/3 cup cold water (and a little stock from the pot)

Cook on high till thickened ( about 10-15 minutes)

Voila! Dinner is done…

Serve with rice or noodles, and it will feed at least 8 people comfortably.

Something Delicious to Ponder About

 

baking recipes
Community

Lingonberry/ Cranberry Slice – Tantalizing Tuesday

Well known in Scandinavia, the lingonberry is related to the cranberry, bilberry and blueberry. Berries are a great addition to one’s diet. Why? Because they contain powerful antioxidants  and provide many health benefits when we eat them. And why not enjoy them in a delicious dessert slice. This slice can be served hot or cold.

Tantalizing Tuesdays

More information on the health benefits is given below but here is the Scandinavian recipe:

Lingonberry  / Cranberry  Slice

 

Base:

4 1/2 dl (almost 2 cups) Plain white flour
1/2 dl (2/3 cup) Sugar
1 tablespoon Baking powder
150 g(5 ounces, almost 2/3 cup)
Unsalted butter
1 Egg
2 dl (3/4 cup) Lingonberry  or cranberry jam/ plum filling/ or your favourite preserves

Streusel topping:
1 1/2 dl (2/3 cup) Oatmeal
3 tablespoons Butter
1 dl (1/2 cup) Sugar
1 teaspoon Vanilla sugar (1/2 teaspoon extract)

Pre – heat the oven to 200 degrees C (400 degrees F).
Combine flour, sugar, and baking powder then cut in the butter.
Add the egg and mix well. Spread into a greased 20×30 (8×12″) pan.
Spread the preserves quite thickly over the batter.
Bake 25-30 minutes, until golden.

Cool in the pan and slice while still warm.
Enjoy served warm or cold. Yumm!!!!

 

Animal studies have shown how the lingonberry can lower inflammatory molecules, block oxidants from destroying tissue, and also help the body replace important antioxidants, like glutathione, which is a master antioxidant in our body. Lingonberry has also been shown to increase red blood cell and liver enzymes needed for antioxidant protection. We need antioxidants to protect vessels and nerve tissue, and also to help decrease the damage from inflammation. Proanthocyanidin extracts from lingonberries were also found to be effective against the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus, which can cause a wide variety of infections.

[Credit: http://www.doctoroz.com/article/superfruit-lingonberry%5D

Something nutritious and delicious to Ponder About

baking recipes
Community

Oh so Light Cinnamon Cake

Cinnamon cake
If you want to bake a cinnamon Cake that is as light and fluffy as a sponge follow this recipe

If you want to bake a cinnamon Cake that is as light and fluffy as a sponge follow this recipe and you will be in for a real treat! And check here for another great cinnamon recipe and to find out Why Cinnamon is so good for you.

Cinnamon Cake Recipe

Mix the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.

Cream the sugar and butter till light and fluffy in a separate bowl, and then add the flour mix .Add milk vanilla and eggs, one at a time, beating very well after each addition.

Pour into prepared kugelhof tin, ring or small loaf pans, or both, ( it makes a large mix and could well make a standard cake and 2 small loaf tins, 1200 x500mm)

NB – the cake is light and will take longer to cook in the centre, hence my use of the ring cake tin!

Bake 180 degrees for 40 – 45 minutes (25 mins for small loaf pans)

Lay out to cool and decorate with icing of your choice, or cinnamon sugar and melted butter

 

*NB. Tip: Be careful turning out as it is so light, it can easily break. After cooling for 10 minutes on a wire rack,  I invert a plate on the top of the cooked cake whilst it is still in the tin,  then flip over and carefully lift off the kugelhof tin.

Tantalizing TuesdaysGood luck and Enjoy the taste and texture whilst pondering the problems of the world

Save

Save

Save