Category Archives: Ethnic and Tasty

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ANZAC Biscuits

I found out about ANZAC biscuits a few weeks ago while browsing through a kids international cookbook, but decided to seek out the real recipe and find out more about these Australian/New Zealander cookies. The cookie recipe was first published in the 1915 St. Andrews Cookery Book. Named ANZAC after the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, the biscuits originated from wives/mothers sending the cookies to their husbands/sons who were stationed overseas. Due to the ingredients and hardy nature of the biscuits, they were well suited to travel.

ANZAC biscuits ingredients are pretty straight forward. Lacking eggs and milk, these cookies are long-lasting and do not require refrigeration. The only ingredient that may be difficult to find pending your location is the golden syrup. Golden syrup is a sugar cane syrup easily found in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand. In Oklahoma City, the only place I found the syrup was at Whole Foods. I tasted the syrup to see what it compared to. If you are stateside, a cheaper alternative may be Cairo Syrup.

I stuck pretty close to the original recipe which had me melt the butter and syrup together and then add a mixture of boiling water and baking soda. One change I did make was swapping the sugar out for Splenda to make them a bit more diet friendly. In my oven, the cookies were done in 16 minutes rather than 18 to 20. The batter made about 20 cookies but they turned out a bit more round that ones in the book I saw.

I brought the finished product to Hubby’s office on Friday for lunch. Both he and the nursing staff enjoyed the lightly sweetened, dense cookie. They were gone pretty quick!

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Kiss Me, I’m (Cooking) Irish

I may not have students to cook for yet in Oklahoma, but I still have Hubby. We’ve made a pact to eat lunch together every Friday so I’m bringing back my Friday international lunch. This week I was cooking Irish. First I researched some Irish dishes and while doing so learned some interesting facts about traditional Irish cooking such as:

  • Traditional Irish recipes are simple. Because of a less affluent past as a country, most traditional dishes require few ingredients to keep the cost down.
  • Adding whiskey to a dish does not make it traditionally Irish. My guess is that if a dish is made with whiskey it is probably an American’s doing.
  • The traditional Irish cook does not let any of the pig go to waste. Tripe (pig’s stomach) and crubeens (pig’s feet) are commonly used in traditional Irish dishes.
  • One food has stayed a staple in Irish cooking for as long as they’ve been cooking – the potato.

On Friday, I decided to make an Irish dessert called Apple Amber a traditional sweet made from one of the few fruits that can survive the Irish climate. Unfortunately, my attempt at meringue was not too successful yesterday but I blame that on the lack of a mixer in my executive apartment. (Don’t worry, I’m going to buy one this weekend so I can try again.) However, the pie was pretty tasty and worth another go.

You can try your hand at Apple Amber by using this recipe on European Cuisine. If you’ve never made meringue before, I also highly suggest reading this tutorial by What’s Cooking America (super informative).

Ingredients for this pie are simple: 1 lbs apples, pie crust, eggs, lemon, and sugar

You have to grate the apples, a first for me, but kind of fun.

Ignore my miserable meringue but the pie was still pretty tasty!

 

 

Latin American Breakfast

When Hubby and I were in Mexico last month, I discovered Chilaquiles – a traditional Mexican breakfast made with chips. My favorite version was called the country breakfast and included chicken, a tomato-based sauce, and lots of queso fresco.

Traditional Mexican Chilaquiles courtesy of On the Road

So today when we went to Cafe Kacao, a Guatemalan breakfast place here in OKC, and I saw a similar dish, I had to try it. What they called Migallas, was almost a perfect replica of the breakfast dish I thoroughly enjoyed in Mexico. A combination of chips, eggs, jalapenos, queso fresco, and red and green peppers, Migallas was was well flavored and filling.

Migallas served with fruit in a sweet cream, fresh tortillas, & delicious black beans.

Look good?

Check out this recipe from Simply Recipes for the basic Chilaquiles. Feel free to add eggs, chicken, pork or steak to make it a hearty dish.

A little Guatemalan coffee made breakfast perfect!

London Calling!

Only 3 days until Opening Ceremonies! I was in the grocery store yesterday and saw this display. I couldn’t help but take some pictures and make one small purchase for Friday.

I just had to get the London Lollies to celebrate on Friday. Unfortunately we’ll be watching the Opening Ceremonies from LAX but at least we’ll do it in style!

Molcajete Recipes

When Hubby and I got married two years ago my cousin got us a molcajete from Williams Sonoma. We had recently discovered that we loved guacamole and were so excited to make it “the real” way. That is all I’ve ever used my molcajete for. As far as we were concerned, molcajete = guacamole maker. But now that we’re in Mexico, we’ve discovered it has a lot more uses than to just make awesome guac. In addition to having guacamole made at our table, we’ve also enjoyed freshly-made salsa and stew made and served in a molcajete. Newly aware of its additional uses, I thought I would do some recipe research to share.  Here’s what I’ve found:

Rudy’s Molcajete Mixto Recipe – a mixed grill of carne asada, nopales, chicken, shrimp, jalapenos, and chorizo sausage served with queso fresco, avocado, and lime

Mexican Style Meat and Vegetable Stew – a chicken, flank steak, and bacon in a tomato based broth

Seafood Molcajete Recipe – shrimp, scallops, and chicken sausage  served hot and spicy in the molcajete

Currently our molcajete is in a storage unit in Augusta, Georgia but once it’s out, I promise to try these and share how they go.

Have any molcajete recipes to share?

Courtesy of davedworkin.com. My own pics are still to come!

It’s All Greek to Me Friday Lunch

For this week’s Friday no-kitchen lunch, we went Greek. Our menu included grilled eggplant, a Greek salad, humus and pita, and grapes. Simple but delicious.

For an easy eggplant recipe, here’s what I did:

  • Cut eggplant in long slices
  • Dip each piece in olive oil and sprinkle with season salt and ground pepper
  • Place on griddle heated to 350 degrees or in a frying pan on medium high heat
  • Heat approximately 4 minutes on each side or until color darkens and eggplant becomes soft

Eggplant cooking on the griddle

Yummy Greek salad with tomatoes, feta, and olives

My Greek Plate

In addition to great food, we had a fantastic group of students on Friday. These students have either returned from abroad or are headed out to one of the following: Spain, Italy, Hungary, England, New Zealand, Japan, Panama, or Costa Rica. Quite the international group and I think they are all pretty wonderful.

Our rising sophomores

Yep…Friday is still Hawaiian shirt day in the Chemistry department

A couple of our great study abroad alums

Pura Vida! No-Stove Costa Rican Lunch

Costa Rica seems to be one of those hot destinations right now for study abroaders, honeymooners, and anyone looking for an affordable, fun vacation. I have never been but thought I would give their cuisine a try for Friday lunch.  Here was our menu all done without a kitchen stove:

  • Gallo Pinto (done via microwave)
  • Fried plantains (via toaster oven)
  • Roasted Chicken (via grocery store)
  • Pineapple
  • Chips and salsa
  • Coconut, chocolate chip cookies – ok, not quite Costa Rican and definitely made with a stove thanks to a recent alum that came by.

GALLO PINTO

Ingredients

  • 2 cans black beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 3 boi-in-bag rice
  • 1/2 cup diced onion with 1 tsp oil
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • season salt to taste

Directions

  • microwave rice according to directions
  • microwave beans for 2 minutes in bowl
  • microwave onions in oil for 2 minutes
  • mix all ingredients and add salt for taste

Gallo Pinto

FRIED PLANTAINS

Ingredients

  • 3 plantains cut length-wise and in half
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • season salt to taste

Directions

  • spread olive oil on roasting pan
  • set toaster oven to 425 degrees
  • brush plantains with olive oil
  • sprinkle with salt
  • place plantains down on roasting pan
  • cook in toaster oven for 15 to 2o minutes; skins should come off easily

Cut plantains in half by length and width

Brush with oil and sprinkle with salt

Lay flat on toaster pan and bake at 425 for 15 to 20 minutes

The final product!

Some real Costa Rican salsa

My Costa Rica plate…yum!

These are my great students!

I had to put this one in…we thought we had an earthquake during lunch but it was actually a military maneuver too close to the coast. At least I got to practice my earthquake preparedness!