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Posted in Food - Inside & Out, Food Fun Facts

Food, Inside and Out – – Is the Spice Right, # 2 being ‘Anise Seed’

Food – Inside and Out will be bits and pieces of information about food, recipes, ingredients and maybe even some food history!!

Here we work on a series we call ‘Is the Spice Right’, where we will discuss a spice you may or may not have in your kitchen, but can have an effect those cherished recipes you so love making for the tribe around you.

Everybody loves spices, but not everybody knows spices.  This is the reason for a series we will call ‘Is the Spice Right’, where we will introduce and discuss the inside and outs of a spice which when knowledgeable, even you can make use of in an upcoming recipe for family, friends or maybe just for you.

Is the Spice Right with ‘Anise Seed’?

Today we discuss ‘Anise Seed’ which is a native herb actively used in the cooking found around the regions of the Mediterranean and Southwest Asia.

A greenish-gray fruit or seed, it is part of the parsley family and can be found in either whole, extract or powdery forms and all will have an unmistakably sweet, aromatic licorice flavor.

The following would be some suggested amounts for use of the Anise Seed in many dishes, always adding a new unique flavor – –

¼ – ½ tsp. crushed, in 8-inch coffee cake recipe.

1 tbsp. sprinkled over tops of 2 dozen cupcakes.

½ – 1 tsp. crushed, to 6 apples – baked or stewed.

1½ – 2 tsp. in cookie recipe yielding about five dozen cookies.

¼ – ½ tsp. crushed, in 2 tbsp. butter for basting 1 lb. of fish.

¼ – ½ tsp. in 8-oz package cream cheese to spread on canapés.

Not a lot of insight to the ‘Anise Seed’, but enough information to now leave it up to you to see if the ‘Anise Seed’ will be the right spice to add to your recipes.

Until we cook again – Keep the Kitchen Busy, the Family Fed and Yourself Cared For!!

Prayers, Blessings and Happy Tummies to all – Papa Bill

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer – no part may be used without written permission.)

(Information gathered from various cookbooks and internet cooking sources.)

Posted in Food A-to-Z, Food Fun Facts, Food Fun/Facts

Food Facts A-to-Z – ‘E’ for Eggplant

Do you love food, all kinds of food?   Have you ever wanted to learn more about food?

I know I can answer yes to both those questions, so let’s combine them together and talk food in general and do it by going from A-to-Z.

‘E’ for today and that means ‘Eggplant’.

For those who love vegetables and are working on a weight loss or weight control diet, ‘eggplant’ can be a popular addition to the food regimen.

‘Eggplant’ was originally native of all areas around India and still is mostly cultivated in the far east regions.

When eaten raw, ‘eggplant’ is going to give a person a very bitter taste.

When the ‘eggplant’ is cooked, it will develop a very rich and complex flavor.

The entire ‘eggplant’ is edible including its soft seeds and thin skin.

‘Eggplant’ is popular because it is very low in fat, protein and carbohydrate content.

‘Eggplant’ is becoming more popular in the U.S. including such dishes as stuffed eggplant, eggplant pizza, eggplant salsa and more.

With the rich, complex flavor it can offer those watching their diet the ‘eggplant’ is deserving of the “E” in our “Food Facts A-to-Z”.

That my friend is also why we know our foods – so then we will know how to feed and care for our bodily machines.

With that we bid you well until another day when we look through foods from A-to-Z.

As always – prayers, blessings and happy eating, Papa Bill

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer)

(Images used cleared for use by bing.com and/or images.google.com)

(Information gathered for this article come from CrossDove Writer’s & Papa Bill’s collections of cookbooks and recipes.)

Posted in Food - Inside & Out, Food Fun Facts

Food, Inside and Out – – Is the Spice Right, # 1

Food – Inside and Out will be bits and pieces of information about food, recipes, ingredients and maybe even some food history!!

Here we work on a series we call ‘Is the Spice Right’, where we will discuss a spice you may or may not have in your kitchen, but can have an effect those cherished recipes you so love making for the tribe around you.

Everybody loves spices, but not everybody knows spices.  This is the reason for a series we will call ‘Is the Spice Right’, where we will introduce and discuss the inside and outs of a spice which when knowledgeable, even you can make use of in an upcoming recipe for family, friends or maybe just for you.

Is the Spice Right with ‘Allspice’?

Today we discuss Allspice, a spice which sometimes is referred to as Jamaica Pepper, Pimento or Jamaica Pimento and is native to the Western Hemisphere.

Allspice is a dried fruit of the Pimenta dioica plant.  Picked when unripe and green, the fruit will be traditionally dried in the sun which will turn them brown and give it a resemblance of a large peppercorn.

The whole fruit itself will have a longer shelf life than a powdered product and will produce a more aromatic product when you take the time to freshly ground it before using.

Allspice plays a major part in the cuisines found throughout the Caribbean and the Middle East.

The following are some suggested amounts to use for adding flavor to a variety of dishes – –

Ground Allspice:

  • > > ¼ tsp. to 1 tsp. in angel food cake or regular cake mixes.
  • > > 1/8 tsp. to ¾ tsp. in 2 cups of sweet potatoes.
  • > > 1 tsp. in 1 ½ to 2 cups graham crackers crumbs for a pie crust.
  • > > ¼ tsp. to ½ tsp. to 1 lb. of powdered sugar for frosting.
  • > > ½ tsp. to 1 cup of toasted coconut.
  • > > ½ tsp. to 1-inch thick slice of ham.
  • > > 2 tsp. to 2 cups waffle mix or recipe using 2 cups of flour.
  • > > 1/8 tsp. to 1 lb. of ground beef

Whole Allspice:

  • > > 3 in 2-3 cups pea soup
  • > > 4 to 6 for each 2 lbs. fish when being poached.

So, now you have just enough information to consider Allspice as a spice that may be right for you in an upcoming cooking adventure.

Until we cook again – Keep the Kitchen Busy, the Family Fed and Yourself Cared For!!

Prayers, Blessings and Happy Tummies to all – Papa Bill

(Information gathered from various cookbooks and internet cooking sources.)

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer – no part may be used without written permission.)

Posted in Food A-to-Z, Food Fun Facts, Uncategorized

Food Facts A-to-Z – ‘D’ for Dates

Do you love food, all kinds of food?   Have you ever wanted to learn more about food?

I know I can answer yes to both those questions, so let’s combine them together and talk food in general and do it by going from A-to-Z.

‘D’ for today and that means ‘Dates’.

While ‘dates’ may not be that popular here in the United States, ‘dates’ have been a staple food for those in the Middle East for thousands of years.

The fruit we call ‘dates’ comes from the date palm, a plant which is found in generous numbers throughout the Middle East.

‘Dates’ can be eaten out-of-hand or may be pitted and then stuffed with fillings.  The stuffed ‘dates’ are called ‘stoned dates’.

Many times, partially dried and pitted ‘dates’ may be glazed with some type of syrup for a sweet but healthy snack.  ‘Dates’ are also very common in the Middle East when chopped up and used in a wide range of sweet and savory dishes.

Health wise ‘dates’ provide a solid range of essential nutrients, including a large source of potassium.  While the sugar content of ripe ‘dates’ may reach 80%, the remainder will have protein and fiber with traces of boron, cobalt, copper, fluorine, magnesium, manganese, selenium and zinc.

The popularity in the Middle East is the reason why we say the ‘D’ in our “Foods A-to-Z” is ‘dates’.

With that we bid you well until another day when we look through foods from A-to-Z.

As always – prayers, blessings and happy eating, Papa Bill

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer)

(Images used cleared for use by bing.com and/or images.google.com)

(Information gathered for this article come from CrossDove Writer’s & Papa Bill’s collections of cookbooks and recipes.)

Posted in Food Fun/Facts, Recipes - Lunch/Dinner, Uncategorized

YumYum Time with a Low-Salt ‘Potato & Broccoli Soup’

Putting a bit of a twist to the taste of a comfort food – ‘Potato & Broccoli Soup’

Are you one that loves to wind down with comfort food like a good soup with crackers?

Once again, Papa Bill brings you a recipe that is a perfect fit for those with a need for a low or no-salt diet, while also giving you some quality comfort and yumyum time with soup and crackers.

Let’s get to cookin’.

POTATO & BROCCOLI SOUP

Ingredients:

10 lbs. peeled & chopped potatoes

1 pkg. frozen broccoli bits

1 can cream of celery soup

4 medium chopped carrots

1 ½ tsp. onion powder

1 tablespoon Mrs. Dash Italian Medley Seasoning Blend

1 quart of 1% milk

1/3 cup wheat flour

½ stick of margarine

2 tablespoons bacon bits

TO DO:

In a large pot add chopped potatoes, broccoli bits, cream of celery soup, chopped carrots, onion powder and Mrs. Dash Italian Medley Seasoning Blend.

Start pot simmering

Add quart of 1% milk

Add 1/3 cup wheat flour (to help thicken the soup)

Add water as necessary or until all ingredients are well covered

Bring to boil, then return to medium for 40 minutes

Check potatoes, if not done turn down to simmer for another 15-20 minutes

5-10 minutes before serving add ½ stick of margarine and 2 tablespoons of bacon bits

Top with a sprinkle of parsley and serve with homemade bread, garlic bread or just crackers.

What better way to relax or wind down than with ‘Potato & Broccoli Soup’.

Enjoy watching the smiles, while listening to hear those “yea, this is good eating”.

As the fancy cooks would say – – Bon Appetite!

Until we cook again – Keep the Kitchen Busy, Family Fed and Yourself Cared For!!

Prayers, blessings and happy tummies to all – – the cook in charge, Papa Bill

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer)

(Recipe is Papa Bill’s adaption of various recipes from his personal collection of cookbooks and recipes.)

Posted in Food Fun/Facts, Recipes - Meats, Uncategorized

YumYum Time with ‘Italian Sloppy Joes’

Putting a bit of a twist to the taste of a people favorite – sloppy joes.

The bit of a twist is to bring a little bit of Italy to the taste buds of you, your family and friends.

And, as always, Papa Bill brings you a recipe that is perfect for those with a need for a low or no-salt diet, while for families the cooking adventure is suitable to include the kiddos on the trip in the kitchen.

So, let’s get to cookin’.

ITALIAN SLOPPY JOES

Ingredients Needed:

2 lbs. lean ground turkey

1/2 teaspoon onion flakes

2 tablespoons Mrs. Dash Italian Medley Seasoning Blend

1 can cream of tomato soup, undiluted

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon vinegar

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

TO DO:

In a large frying pan, brown ground turkey and then drain excess fat

Add ½ teaspoon onion flakes, tablespoon Mrs. Dash Italian Medley Seasoning Blend, can of undiluted tomato soup, tablespoon brown sugar, tablespoon vinegar and teaspoon Worcestershire sauce in frying pan with browned ground turkey

Stir until well mixed together

Set to simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently

When done serve on bun or bread of your choice, add a slice of cheddar cheese if you would like and let the taste buds enjoy.

Enjoy watching the smiles, while listening to hear those “yea, this is good eating”.

As the fancy cooks would say – – Bon Appetite!

Until we cook again – Keep the Kitchen Busy, Family Fed and Yourself Cared For!!

Prayers, blessings and happy tummies to all – – the cook in charge, Papa Bill

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer)

(Recipe is Papa Bill’s adaption of various recipes from his personal collection of cookbooks and recipes.)

Posted in Food A-to-Z, Food Fun/Facts

Food Facts A-to-Z – ‘C’ for Cranberries

Do you love food, all kinds of food?   Have you ever wanted to learn more about food?

I know I can answer yes to both those questions, so let’s combine them together and talk food in general and do it by going from A-to-Z.

‘C’ for today will be for Cranberries.

Cranberries’ start out on low, creeping shrubs or vines and are initially white before becoming the common dark deep red in color.

While being a major commercial crop in both the United States and Canada, ‘Cranberries’ are very edible with an acidic taste that many times will overwhelm the sweetness of the berry itself.

Though they are edible as just a berry, ‘cranberries’ are more widely known and enjoyed from such processed items as cranberry juice, cranberry sauce, cranberry jam and of course sweetened dried cranberries.

Health wise many call ‘cranberries’ one of the “super-fruits” because they contain vitamin C, have dietary fiber, manganese and contain large antioxidant qualities.

‘Cranberries’ are highly recommended for those suffering from kidney stone and urinary health issues.

So, beyond the holiday dinner favorite of cranberry sauce, ‘cranberries’ carry so many natural, healthy reasons for keeping them on one’s regular diet.

Many, including this writer, will often throw a dozen cranberries into a smoothie where a person can get the health benefits without worrying about any taste.

Beyond the holiday favorite food, the health benefits alone make ‘cranberries’ the reason why they are a highly popular, which in turn makes ‘cranberries’ a solid pick for the ‘C’ in the food fun ride of ‘Foods A-to-Z’.

Stay tuned for the next round of ‘Food Facts A-to-Z’.

As always – prayers, blessings and happy eating, Papa Bill

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer)

(Images used cleared for use by bing.com and/or images.google.com)

(Information gathered for this article come from CrossDove Writer’s & Papa Bill’s collections of cookbooks and recipes.)

Posted in Food A-to-Z, Food Fun/Facts

Food Facts A-to-Z – ‘B’ for Bananas

Do you love food, all kinds of food?   Have you ever wanted to learn more about food?

I know I can answer yes to both those questions, so let’s combine them together and talk food in general and do it by going from A-to-Z.

‘B’ for today will be for Bananas.

Bananas are an elongated, curved, yellow colored edible fruit that grows in clusters.

Originally native to tropical Indomalaya and Australia, bananas are now grown in 107 countries, with most of those ‘banana’ plantations growing the fruit for eating than for the possible banana fiber, banana wine or even banana beer.

In 2013, bananas ranked fourth among world crops for financial value, right behind rice, wheat and maize.

Bananas can be eaten either raw or cooked and have even been made into jam.

Bananas do have some health benefits as it is an excellent source of vitamin B6, soluble fiber and moderate amounts of vitamin C, manganese and potassium.

In some testing, bananas have been found to be associated with reduced risks of colorectal cancer, breast cancer and renal cell carcinoma.

With the health benefits alone, especially those who need more fruit in their diets, having a couple of bananas should make for an excellent daily requirement.

Snack ability, sweetness and a variety of uses for your health would be the why that the ‘B’ in food fun has to be the banana.

Stay tuned for the next round of ‘Food Facts A-to-Z’.

As always – prayers, blessings and happy eating, Papa Bill

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer)

(Images used cleared for use by bing.com and/or images.google.com)

(Information gathered for this article come from CrossDove Writer’s & Papa Bill’s collections of cookbooks and recipes.)

Posted in Food A-to-Z, Food Fun/Facts, Uncategorized

Food Fun A-to-Z – ‘A’ for Animal Cracker/Cookies

Do you love food, all kinds of food?   Have you ever wanted to learn more about food?

I know I do and have to both those questions, so let’s combine them together and talk food in general and do it by going from A-to-Z.

‘A’ for today will be for Animal Crackers/Cookies.

We all know ‘animal cracker/cookies’ as they are the little ones shaped like an animal we would see at a zoo or circus like lions, tigers, bears, elephants or giraffes.  The most popular are the light-colored and slightly sweet ones although a darker/chocolate-flavored type is becoming very popular with the masses.

The ‘animal cracker/cookie’ goes back to the late 19th century when animal-shaped biscuits (British word for cookie) were brought to the United States from the United Kingdom.

Since 1902 a box of animal cracker/cookies have used 54 different animal shapes and currently each hand size box comes with 22 cracker/cookies in each box.  Among those 22 shapes you will find the current group which include the shapes of a bear, camel, crocodile, elephant, giraffe, monkey, horse, lion, seal, tiger and zebra.

Popular with infants for the being easy to handle and dissolvable, while their bite size stature makes them popular with all ages for their snack-ability, ‘animal cracker/cookies’ are selling at a pace of 40 million packages per year.

Snack-ability, sweetness and memories of childhood are the main reasons that for today, the “A” in food facts is represented by ‘animal cracker/cookies’.

Stay tuned for the next round of ‘Food Facts A-to-Z’.

As always – prayers, blessings and happy eating, Papa Bill

(Copyright@2017, CrossDove Writer)

(Images used cleared for use by bing.com and/or images.google.com)

(Information gathered for this article come from CrossDove Writer’s & Papa Bill’s collections of cookbooks and recipes.)