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My Recipe contribution to BloggerAid CookBook: Eggplant Mousse with Butifarra negra

In Snacks Appetisers & Starters On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on My Recipe contribution to BloggerAid CookBook: Eggplant Mousse with Butifarra negra
My friends Val, Ivy and Giz at BloggerAid are such fantastic and generous people! They are assembling a Cookbook to help ease the world’s hunger!!!!

In Ivy’s words: we will be publishing a cookbook with 100% of the profit from sales being directed to our chosen agency. The funds we raise will be directed to specific programs of The World Food Programme (WFP), the United Nations frontline agency. The needs are great and choosing a specific effort is currently being negotiated.

Who will contribute to this cookbook?

The cookbook is targeted for sale on Amazon by November/December 2009. There is a great deal of work involved in delivering this project and we will rely on you to help in any way you can. We will keep you informed every step of the way on Bloggeraid !!!!

I want to collaborate!!! Do you want to join too? Head to Ivy’s blog for more info.

I chose an appetizer with basic ingredients and easy recipe instructions. This is one of the dishes I had in my table during the Christmas holidays and it was an absolute hit!!!! I cannot publish the recipe here because it can only be shown in the Cookbook, but I will tell you that it has eggplant, garlic, extra virgin olive oil, salt and butifarra negra… Mmmmm. Remember to buy the book next Nov/Dec 2009 and get all kinds of gorgeous recipes!!! I’m getting mine reserved ;D

All ingredients can be found all over the world except the Butifarra negra that is a traditional Catalan pork blood sausage, but you can substitute it for something similar typical from your country.

I hope that the Cookbook will be a great success and we will contribute in making this world a better place to live 😀
On a separate note, I’m trying to make my blog look nicer, but will take me some days to get things right… please, be patient… it will hopefully be for good! Año Nuevo, Vida Nueva! New Year, New Life!

Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

In Snacks Appetisers & Starters On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Sautéed ground chicken thighs, shiitake mushrooms and water chestnuts seasoned with Asian spices are served in a crispy cold lettuce leaf with a spicy hoisin dipping sauce. I can’t think of a more playful appetizer to celebrate the Year of The Dragon!

Some of you probably know how much I love using lettuce leaves as a wrap for everything from Turkey Taco Lettuce Wraps to BLT Lettuce wraps. They are the perfect low-carb solution and don’t interfere with the flavors of the filling. This recipe is no exception, you can taste all the Asian goodness… pure delight in every bite!

This recipe was ever so slightly adapted from my friend Bee, of Rasa Malaysia’s first cookbook, Easy Chinese Recipes: Family Favorites From Dim Sum to Kung Pao. Whether you are celebrating The Chinese New Year, The Superbowl, or just having some friends over, I highly recommend making these… double or triple the recipe for a large crowd!

And speaking of Chinese New Year, I have a new cookbook giveaway this week! Two lucky winners will have a chance to win their own copy of Easy Chinese Recipes: Family Favorites From Dim Sum to Kung Pao. For a chance to win, visit Skinny Bits and leave a comment there (US residents only)!

Oh and one more thing I want to mention, if you want to turn this into a main dish, make some steamed rice and serve each wrap with rice and chicken, it’s very good! Enjoy!!

Click Here For The Recipe…

Banana Split Bars

In Snacks Appetisers & Starters On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on Banana Split Bars

The heart-healthy power bars have all the ingredients one might have on a banana split: made with quinoa, rolled oats, dried cherries, nuts and honey plus antioxidants from the cinnamon and chocolate – and they taste good too!

I got a copy of the Power Hungry: The Ultimate Energy Bar Cookbook and couldn’t decide which recipe I wanted to make first, they all look so good. Such a fun book, I asked them if they wanted to give some away to my fans and they said YES! So, three lucky winners will have a chance to win this cookbook, with loads of recipes for protein bars, granola bars, endurance bars, and even knock-offs of many store bought bars like Luna bars, Clif bars, and Kind bars to name a few. All the recipes are healthy, easy to make and use all natural ingredients. For a chance to win, visit Skinny Bits and leave a comment there.

These make a great snack, perfect to pack in your lunch bag, or great for powering up a workout or post-workout. While these bars weren’t a big hit with my picky 3 year old, I thought these were tasty (I think she’ll love the chocolate chip protein cookies). For variations of this, you can make a Maple Blueberry Bar, swapping out the cherries and honey for maple syrup and dried blueberries, or she suggests a Peanut Chocolate Banana Bar omitting the cinnamon and cherries and adding 2/3 cup of dry roasted peanuts in place of the walnuts.

To store, wrap them individually with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 3 months, keeping them airtight. 

Click Here To See The Full Recipe…

The Tuscan Sun Cookbook

In Main Course On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on The Tuscan Sun Cookbook

Friends of ours, Greg and Cathy, came for a visit and brought me an amazing cookbook, The Tuscan Sun Cookbook.  They have met the author, Frances Mayes, when they were on vacation in Italy.  Frances Mayes just happens to be the author of the …

One Ingredient February 2014

In Snacks Appetisers & Starters On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on One Ingredient February 2014

We are now into the shortest and what can sometimes be the coldest month of the year. February can bring snow and the garden is not yet awake so the flowers and colours of spring are a way off yet. But, we are lucky enough to be in the Seville orange season. I have made 15 jars and one has been sent off to the Marmalade Awards. There are also blood oranges and rhubarb as well as leeks, kale, purple sprouting broccoli and jerusalem artichokes. But the ingredient I have chosen for this month’s One Ingredient  is not any of these. I have decided to go for………………..

one ingredient february 2014


Fresh, zingy, aromatic and equally at home in both sweet & savoury dishes. 

If you are cooking with limes this month then both Nazima and myself would love you to link up your recipes here. There will be a round-up of all the entries at the beginning of March. 

Happy Cooking!

This monthly family friendly cooking challenge is hosted by Nazima at Franglais Kitchen and Laura at How to cook good food.

There is a monthly theme ingredient which we ask you to make, and blog a recipe around.

The rules are as follows:

  • The recipe does not have to be showy or complicated – just family friendly

  • It can be sweet or savoury  (depending on the ingredient and your taste!)

  • You can use an old blog post if you wish but please let us know and please add the monthly one ingredient logo – we will create an appropriate logo for each month!

  • Feel free to enter the recipe to other challenges as well.

  • Please give credit if you use other people’s recipes and link to the source as appropriate.

  • Please enter by using the “Linky” tool which will vary according to which one of us is hosting. The “Simply Linked” widget can be found at the bottom of this post.

  • Please include a link to our websites as the challenge hosts.

  • If you tweet your recipes and use the hashtag  #oneingredient we will retweet all those that we see.

We hope you feel inspired to enter!

Laura and Nazima


Soya Baingan Bharta/Baingan Kheema Bharta

In Side Dishes, Vegetables & Salads, Vegetarian Ideas On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on Soya Baingan Bharta/Baingan Kheema Bharta

Baingan bharta is my all time favourite dish, every time i search for a different bharta recipe. While going through my cookbook collection, finally i got an interesting baingan bharta from Sanjeev kapoor book.Sanjeev Kapoor the famous Indian chef who …

Orange Duck – Orange You Glad I Didn’t Call It Duck a l’Orange?

In Main Course On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on Orange Duck – Orange You Glad I Didn’t Call It Duck a l’Orange?

I don’t think I’ve made Duck “a l’Orange” since culinary school, nor tried to pronounce it, but thanks to a rather enticing photo in a friend’s cookbook, I decided to go full culinary time machine, and I’m so glad I did.

That friend would be award-winning food blogger and author, Hank Shaw. He’s recently published a cookbook called Duck, Duck, Goose: The Ultimate Guide to Cooking Waterfowl, Both Farmed and Wild, which was the inspiration for this gorgeous, and very easy dish. Still looking for a sexy Valentine’s entrée? You could do a lot worse.

This is one of those classic dishes that somehow became a cliché, and people stopped making it for fear of looking un-cool, which is too bad, since it’s really good. This is traditionally done with a whole roasted duck, but by using breasts we get pretty much the same results, in a lot less time.

My version is very close to Hank’s, except I don’t use orange juice. I prefer the flavor of the sauce with just marmalade, zest, and Grand Marnier. Speaking of the Grand Marnier, other than other orange liquors, I’ll be offering no alternatives. That’s what literally gives the sauce its soul.

By the way, if you want to raise your “game” game, I encourage you to check out Hank’s cookbook. I think it’s very well done, and gets basically all 5-star reviews on Amazon. So, check that out, check this out, and as always enjoy!

Ingredients for 2 portions:
2 duck breasts
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp duck fat or vegetable oil
1 tsp flour
2 tsp grated orange zest
2 tbsp Grand Marnier (orange liquor)
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
pinch of cayenne
1 rounded tbsp orange marmalade (preferably Seville orange marmalade)
1 cup chicken broth
1 tbsp butter
extra zest for garnish
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Lunch! Chicken Poppy Seed Salad

In Uncategorized On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on Lunch! Chicken Poppy Seed Salad

Chicken Poppy Seed Salad(adapted from “Home Cooking with Trisha Yearwood” Cookbook)1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and diced2 celery stalks, chopped2 C seedless grapes, cut in half1 C slivered almonds, or chopped pecans1 C mayonnaise1/4…

fennel, radish & apple salad

In Vegetarian Ideas On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on fennel, radish & apple salad

Yesterday was one huge Thanksgiving dinner, cooked by moi.

My sister Shamu and her man, Tombolina, came over and I spent the entire day preparing for the feast.

It was one of those cooking days where everything just fell into place. I cooked recipes simultaneously based on time and need, and managed to balance pie pastry with turkey brining, yam basting with dressing prep, cocktail making with vegetable slicing.

I even managed to completely clean the kitchen before Jonas got home and my guests arrived (Jonas was particularly pleased he dodged that bullet).

To be honest, it was the first time in my life when I managed to be so zen and organised when cooking a huge meal. I was very, very proud of myself.

Gold star please!

A “Spiced Scrumpy” cocktail kicked the evening off, then the menu combined Americana favourites, modern twists and some Thanksgiving classics:

Pear & Scallop Squash Soup
Texan BBQ Turkey Shanks
Sausage & Sage Dressing
Fennel, Apple & Radish Salad
Maple, Bourbon & Sesame Candied Yams
Greens Simmered in Chicken Stock w Onions & Garlic
Chocolate Pecan Pie & Vanilla Ice Cream

Every recipe was new – untried, untested – and every single one was a great success. I was so pleased with the way the food turned out.

Today I’m going to share with you one of the recipes: this autumnal salad of pretty pinkish hues and fresh, tangy flavours.

The original recipe used Jerusalem artichokes (aka sunchokes), but I was unable to source them in the Sydney spring weather. Nonetheless, the salad added a perfect refreshing balance to some of the other heavier dishes.

Fennel, Radish & Apple Salad

Based on a recipe from The Flexitarian Table by Peter Berley. Serves 4-6 as part of a buffet.

4 radishes, trimmed
2 gala apples, peeled and cored
2 small fennel bulbs, trimmed
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
1 teaspoon chopped fennel fronds
Salt and pepper to taste


1. In a bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar and lemon juice to make a smooth vinaigrette. Season vinaigrette with salt and pepper to taste.

2. With a super sharp peeler or mandolin, shave radishes, apples and fennel into wafer thin slices.

3. Toss vegetables in vinaigrette then cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 day, to allow the flavours to come together.

4. Just before serving, add in chives and fennel fronds. Taste, then season with salt and pepper as required.

Pasta in Black and Pasta in White. Black Linguini versus White Spaguetti.

In Pasta & Pizza On 30/11/-0001 Comments Off on Pasta in Black and Pasta in White. Black Linguini versus White Spaguetti.

Last week, after lunch and while watching TV, we bumped into the wonderful film: Gone with the Wind. I cannot help it, I must watch it… no matter how many times I cried with it… I have to cry and cry again and wonder how life and people has changed from those days to nowadays.

That famous sentence rumbles in my brain: “A Dios pongo por testigo que nunca más volveré a pasar hambre”, when Scarlett is at Tara’s garden and claims to God that she will never be hungry again. As far as I know, many of my ancestors suffered from hunger… I cannot imagine how horrible that could be. Me and my family have been lucky enough to have plenty of food and comfort in life. I feel really grateful and wish everybody could have 3 meals a day.

So, this is my Christmas wish: No more hunger in the world! Do you want to put your little sand grain too? Then, make a dream come true. Get your own BloggerAid CookBook, enjoy the recipes and give kids a hand ♥. Just a click away from you.
The BloggerAid Cookbook
If you want to save some money to order the book, here you have 2 cheap, healthy and easy recipes to help you! Black Linguini with artichokes and  green garlic and White Spaguetti with mussels and red pepper.

I’m sending over both recipes to Kevin from Closet Cooking, who is hosting Presto Pasta Nights this week. Don’t forget to send your recipes and take a look at the round up… there’s always wonderful new ideas! PPN is Ruth Daniels’ famous and “old” event… this will be the 142 serving!!!

Black Linguini with Artichokes and green Garlic.
Ingredients for 4 servings: 400 grs of Black Linguini, 4 Artichokes, 6 green garlics, 2 small dried red chillies, olive oil and salt.

  • Pour some olive oil in a big sauce pan and heat. Cut and peel the greener artichokes leaves; discard. Place inside the sauce pan the artichokes hearts cut in thin slices. Put the 2 chillies and cook at low heat until the artichokes are tender. Add the green garlic cut in slices and stir for 1 minute. Taste and add salt if necessary. Strain and reserve.
  • Get some salty water boiling and add the Linguini. Follow package instructions and once cooked, strain and mix with the artichokes.
White Spaguetti with Mussels and Red Pepper.
Ingredients for 4 servings: 500 grs of fresh Mussels, 400 grs of White Spaguetti, 1 red pepper, 1 small glass of white dry wine, 1 onion, 2 garlic cloves, a spring or two of fresh parsley, olive oil, salt and black ground pepper.
  • Clean and steam the mussels. Discard the shells and keep their meat.
  • Peel and chop the onion. Prepare a sauce pan with some olive oil. Pour the onion in and cook until transparent. Then add the cleaned and chopped red pepper, when tender add the peeled and chopped garlic. Stir until fragant and add the wine, stir until the alcohol evaporates and add the mussels.
  • Sprinkle with some salt, black ground pepper and the minced parsley, taste and reserve.
  • Get some salty water boiling and add the Spaguetti. Follow package instructions and when done, strain and mix with the mussels.
Enjoy the PASTA dishes ☺☺☺