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Newsletter #13 - June 2003
Welcome to the Recipes4us.co.uk free monthly newsletter. If you have any suggestions for additions to this newsletter, or if you wish to submit a culinary related article, please write to me at Newsletter@Recipes4us.co.uk .
Happy Cooking !
Florence Sandeman, Editor
Why did the student eat his homework?
Because the teacher told him it was a piece of cake
Q. Strange question but if you have any references for me re this I would be very grateful. What is the exact way to measure a half teaspoon? Is it half a level teaspoon exactly a level teaspoon or other?
A. It's not a strange question at all, in fact, I had to really think about it. Half a teaspoon = a level teaspoon divided in half from tip to base. Just scoop the 1st half into the recipe with a knife and return the remaining half to the package/container.
P-P-V for the perfect B-B-Q
Click the BBQ for lots of exciting recipes
Ok, it's not often that we can plan a BBQ days in advance, but barbecue food can be made into gastronomic wonders which are worthy of cooking in the kitchen (if the day gets washed out by rain). Just a couple of hours is sufficient time to prepare delicious and exciting food.
DO - use ingredients you may not have associated with BBQs. One very underused item is fish - fillets, steaks, whole - especially the firmer fishes such as swordfish, fresh tuna and monkfish
DO - Marinate fish, poultry and meat. Some people like their food plainly cooked. That's fine. But what a difference added seasoning makes, turning an everyday ingredient into something to tantalise the taste buds. With BBQs marinating is a God send. Not only does it add flavour, but with meat and fowl, it has the added benefit of tenderising it. Marinating for even an hour or so will benefit most meats. Most of us have the basic ingredients in our kitchens....oil, some sort of acid (lemon juice, wine or even a decent vinegar), seasonings such as onion, garlic, pepper and herbs....even dried herbs will do. USE THEM....EXPERIMENT ....BE BOLD! And if it rains, it's good enough to be cooked indoors.
DO - cook EVERYTHING on the
BBQ - 1st course, main course, vegetable accompaniments and desserts, especially good in foil parcels laced with butter or olive oil and a sprinkling of fresh herbs.
DON'T - stick to sausages, burgers and chicken drumsticks. There are too many other fabulous foods which taste great when barbecued.
I remember the very first BBQ I ever did. We decided to spit roast a whole chicken. We ended up eating it 4 hours later....under the parasol....in the rain. We may have got a little damp, but we didn't get food poisoning!
Think of the BBQ as an oven whose thermostat isn't working. The object is to get the middle part of the BBQ very hot, with the outer parts a little cooler, which, if one follows most manufacturers instructions is a doddle. Pile fuel in the centre, light it and WAIT until it's covered with white ash. Then spread it over the entire base, keeping the central third a little deeper, and the outer 2/3rds quite shallow.
Place the meat/fowl in the centre over the very hot coals and seal on all sides so it's a good colour but not too dark. By the time that's done, the outer parts of the BBQ have burned away enough to be further away from the grill enabling food to be moved to those
parts to cook through without charring.
A common mistake often made is to put the food on the bbq grill then leave it and go off to have a glass of wine and a chat for 10 minutes. 10 minutes is a lifetime in bbq-world. FREQUENT TURNING and REPOSITIONING. No-one would put a chicken breast under a very hot grill then leave it without checking how it's doing, probably lowering the heat at some point and turning and/or basting it. With bbqs it's even more important.
Make use of the various holes bbq manufacturers have provided to raise or lower the grill. They are there for a reason, primarily because charcoal has a mind of its own and once alight, will just burn away selfishly with no thought of temperature or the fact the cook wants to enjoy the sunshine and have a laugh with their friends. It's so easy just to transfer the partially cooked food to a plate, use oven gloves to move the HOT grill up or down, then replace the food. Only takes a couple of minutes....
BASTE....OFTEN...VERY OFTEN, with the marinade or other liquid such as olive oil or melted butter. Keeps the food moist and succulent.
What's New This month
Cooking by Country
Click the picture to find out about Belgium's culinary culture and history, present day cooking plus lots of recipe
Belgian cooking is one of the most underrated world cuisines. It's a country where northern Germanic culture melds with Southern French culture, both of which are evident in its traditional recipes.
Also in this section, we give you comprehensive information about a typical Belgian dish and a widely used ingredient.
The Belgian Speciality Dish MOULES ET FRITES
The Belgian Speciality Ingredient ENDIVE
Ingredient of the month
Click the picture to find out all about Sultanas plus lots of recipes
Seedless, succulent and honey sweet Sultanas are a natural choice for cakes, biscuits and desserts, but the sumptuous flavour goes remarkably well in savoury recipes, lending a warm rounded flavour to ingredients such as meat, fish, poultry and vegetables.
Recipe of the Month
Viennese Cherry Flan
There should be cherries galore this month so here's an impressive Austrian speciality dessert for you to try out.
900g/2lb Fresh Cherries
2 tbsp red Wine
4 tbsp Raspberry Jam
1 x 25cm/10-inch pre-baked pastry flan case
300ml/10fl.oz. Crème Patissiere (or thick custard)
50g/2oz Chopped Almonds
1 tbsp Icing Sugar
1. Stone the cherries and place in a saucepan together with the sugar and wine. Cook gently for about 20 minutes or until the cherries are just tender and the liquid syrupy. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
2. Preheat the oven to 220C, 425F, Gas Mark 7.
3. Spread the jam over the base of the pastry case then pour in the cherry mixture.
4. Spread the crème patissiere over the cherries, sprinkle with the almonds and bake for 10-15 minutes until the almonds are toasted.
5. Dredge with the icing sugar and serve hot or cold.
What's in season
Artichokes, Apricots, Asparagus, Carrots, Cherries, Cucumbers, Gooseberries, Green Beans, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Nectarines, Peaches, Pears, Peas, Radish, Raspberries, Sea Kale, Spinach, Strawberries
New and Featured Recipes
V = Vegetarian
DESSERTS, CAKES AND BAKES
SOUPS AND STARTERS
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