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Monday, 2 March 2015

Pies in the Desert - Sour Cream Strawberry and Rhubarb & Apple Crumble

Making pies on holidays can be a little bit of a challenge but not impossible. A full bottle of wine improvised for a rolling pin...Carl carefully removed the label for me which made for cleaner rolling.
Please click here to go to the original pie recipe.

pastry made with self rising flour

sour cream filling

improvised rolling pin...

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Pier Market at Pier 39, Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco

We waited in line perhaps 3 minutes and then we were seated at a window table over looking San Francisco Bay and Alcatraz. We had a lovely view and Mark, our waiter served us immediately. Nice young man, very attentive and polite. Perfect lunch when visiting Fishermans Wharf and Pier 39.
Raoul grills all the fresh catch of the day

We enjoyed steamed curry muscles, fish & chips to die for and clam chowder...delicious!

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Fresh Oysters and Crab in Bandon, Oregon on Valentines Day

Carl and I enjoyed the most delicious, fresh, local crab and oysters on Valentines Day thanks to 'The Loft' and Tony's Crab Shack right on the warf in Old Town Bandon.  
Great little town with very friendly people and great food.

delicious crab cakes from 'The Loft' 

and a delicious glass of Cab Franc 2012...can it get any better?

fresh grilled Oysters in the half shell
yummy crab bisque from 'The Loft'

We arrived in Bandon after a full days drive and didn't have a reservation for Valentines Dinner.  We sat at the bar in 'The Loft' and had the best time and the staff were so friendly.

Friday, 13 February 2015

The best Mexican dessert....light, chilled and a real palate pleaser in Oregon

Black Ball ferry taken from Victoria Harbour to Port Angeles
After a long drive from the Black Ball Ferry in Victoria to Port Angeles we finally arrived in  McMinnville, Oregon. We stopped at the El Primo Mexican Restaurant and had the most delicious soft corn taco with chicken and all the usual fixings...beans, rice and salad. Absolutely perfect until the small complimentary desert arrived... Bunuelos is a deep fried corn tortilla with honey and cinnamon topped with pineapple sorbet, whip cream and a drizzle of strawberry coolie.  Wow..what a treat.

Lemon Meringue Pie for Kevin, my brother-in-law

Yield:  2   X  9 inch lemon pies
There is nothing more satisfying than a delicious, home-made lemon meringue pie. Today in Metchosin, BC (outside Victoria) it is a dull, chilly, damp day and to cheer everyone up and to thank my brother-in-law for all his help with our technology I have made some pies.
Now, I cannot take credit for this filling recipe as I truly believe there is no sense ‘re-inventing the wheel’. There are so  many delicious lemon pie filling recipes out there that I simply opened one of my favourite cookbooks ‘ Joy of Cooking, (Irma S. Rombauer and Marion Rombauer Becker)’ pg. 657 and used their fabulous lemon meringue recipe. 
As is sometimes the case, if you don’t have all the ingredients for a recipe you may have to go out to the grocery store. But today, my sister Marie-Terese doesn’t have enough lemons on her Meyer  lemon tree and I don’t want to venture out into the cold

Marie-Terese's tree with only one lemon left
I couldn't take the last lemon! 
so I am substituting ‘True Lemon’ (a  crystallized lemon essence) to make up for the fresh lemon juice I don’t have (please see pic of this product below).
Here is the lemon filling from ‘Joy of Cooking’ (pg. 657)
in a heavy pot add:
3 cups sugar
12 tbsp. corn starch
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup cold water
1 cup lemon juice (today I used the juice of 1 1/2 Meyer lemons and made up the remaining 1 cup with cold water and 12 packages (they are very small) of ‘True Lemon’ which is a crystallized lemon essence.
6 egg yolks (save the egg whites for the meringue on top of the pie
3 cups boiling water
4 tbsp. butter  (put this in at the very end)

Combine sugar, cornstarch, salt, cold water and lemon juice in a heavy pot. Turn on the heat to medium, add the beaten egg yolks and bring this mixture to a boil,  stirring constantly. When it comes to the boiling point slowly incorporate the boiling water. Continue to cook until the mixture boils. Remove from the heat and add the butter and allow it to melt. Stir well.
The butter gives the lemon filling a glossy look and a great taste.
Pour the warm lemon filling into 2 baked pie shells. 
Top with meringue and bake in a hot oven for 2-3 minutes to slightly brown the meringue tips.

Ingredients for Pastry.
PASTRY (enough pastry for 4-5 pie shells)

5 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. salt
1 egg
1 lb. shortening
2 tbsp. white wine vinegar or white vinegar
1 cup ice water
1 tbsp. brown sugar

1.     Mix together flour, salt and brown sugar. Whisk together to remove the lumps.
2.    Cut up shortening into small cubes, return to cooler to keep cold.
3.    Add vinegar and egg to liquid measure cup. Beat with a fork.
4.    Add enough ice cold water to egg/vinegar mixture to make a total of 1 cup of liquid.
5.    Place measured dry ingredients in a large bowl if mixing by hand.
6.    Add shortening and with a knife or a pastry blender start cutting the shortening in to the flour until all the shortening is dime size and mealy.

Miriam's Time Saving Tip♥ If using a stand mixer in pastry making do not multi-task. Stay at the mixer and pulse the machine on and off until the flour and shortening are slightly mixed but not totally combined. There should still be big size chunks of shortening showing and plenty of loose flour. Do not be alarmed at this because if you go too far at this stage you will ruin the pastry.
7.     Add liquid to mixing bowl and with a fork mix liquid in. Do not over mix at this stage or your pastry will be tough. Gently form into a ball with your hand.
8.    Roll dough up into a disc and wrap in parchment paper and then in a clean plastic bag and store in cooler until needed.
Miriam's Time Saving Tip♥ Making this pastry ahead is a great time saver. It keeps well for over a week in the fridge as long as it is wrapped well. After making pies freeze the remaining pastry for use later.
6 eggs whites
1 cup white granulated sugar
beat the egg whites until soft peaks. Add sugar and continue to beat until the meringue has stiff peaks, but do not overheat or the meringue will be lumpy and dry. 

Chef Miriam Borys, B.Ed., MA.
'Cooking Uncovered'

Friday, 23 January 2015

Swimming Rama Chicken for Sheila Maggie’s Birthday Dinner

Original Recipe: Graeme Moorhouse

Adapted by: Miriam Borys

Servings: 5-6

1 lb. chicken breast or thighs - thinly sliced 
2 tbsp. butter
1 large yellow onion 
8 cremini mushrooms - cleaned & sliced
2 tbsp. red curry paste 

2 cans coconut milk
2 tsps. each brown sugar (or honey), fish sauce, lime juice 
8 kaffir leaves (lime leaves) 
2 tbsp.  peanut butter
4-5 large carrots (I use yellow and orange carrots) - peeled and chopped into 
large chunks
15 small new potatoes - cut in half 

2 cups basmati rice

Par boil the prepared carrots and potatoes for 5 minutes. Turn off and drain immediately so the vegetables don’t overcook. Hold to use later.

Rinse under cold water and then slice chicken breast or  thighs into thin slices. Set aside to hold until the curry sauce is in the pan and simmering.

Heat a heavy sauce pan on medium heat and melt the butter. Add diced onion and cook until slightly transparent. Add the mushrooms and continue to saute until slightly cooked. Remove pot from the heat and hold.

Now put the rice on to cook. Add rice to another sauce pot and rinse under cold water several times until the water runs clear.
Add one cup of the coconut milk and 2 cups of water to the rice. Add 3 kaffir lime leaves and bring up to the boil and turn down to low to slowly cook while you put the chicken on.

Place the onion/mushroom pot back on the heat and add curry paste and stir to blend with the the vegetables. Add 1 cup of the remaining coconut milk from the can to help blend the curry paste. Continue to stir until the curry paste is well blended and is heated. Add remaining coconut milk and stir in brown sugar, fish sauce, lime juice and remaining kaffir leaves (remember these leaves are for flavour only and not to eat).
Add chicken slices to the hot coconut curry sauce and stir well. Cook for 5 minutes.
Add peanut butter, par boiled potatoes and carrots, stir well and bring up to the boil.  Reduce the heat to simmer and cook until chicken reaches the internal temperature of 170 degrees F (approximately as long as it takes for the rice to cook).
Thank you to my brother-in-law Graeme for the original swimming rama recipe on this blog.

Chef Miriam Borys, B.Ed., MA.
'Cooking Uncovered'

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Healthy Turkey Chili

Recipe Title: Healthy and Quick Turkey Chili  

1/4 cup olive oil
2 onion- diced small
2 cup celery - diced
1 cup bell peppers - red & yellow were used for this recipe
6 garlic cloves - peeled and diced
.5 kg. lean ground turkey

1 tsp. red chilli flakes
1 tbsp. smoked paprika
1 tbsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 cup + chilli powder 
1  can tomato sauce (398ml can)
1 large can diced tomatoes 
2 cups canned roma tomatoes (in the jar)
1 can 398ml brown beans of choice (14oz.) 
1 can 540ml black beans - rinsed well first (19 oz.)
1 can 540ml chick peas - rinsed well first (19 oz.)
1 can 540ml kidney beans - rinsed well first (19 oz.)
1 cup clamato juice or water
salt & pepper

In a large sauce pot sauté onions, celery, garlic and bell peppers.
When onions are slightly transparent add spices, herbs and salt and pepper.
Add ground turkey.  Sauté while breaking apart the  turkey until the turkey is semi cooked.
Add the rest of the ingredients on the list. 
Bring up to the boil, stirring and then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 - 45 minutes to allow time for the spices and herbs to infuse the beans.
Serve with fresh bread.

Chef Miriam Borys, B.Ed., MA.
'Cooking Uncovered'