Quick like a bunny

Quick like a bunny

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Rooibos tea with Orange peel powder and dried Goji berries (Recipe)

I got these Goji berries as an extra from Nutsonline.com. I tasted them plain and think they taste horrible. I read online people make tea with them. So, I thought to give it a try. I came up with this recipe from ingedients I had on hand.

1/2 tsp. Rooibos loose tea or tea bag (Any tea will do, I chose a non-caff.)
1/2 tsp. dried ground Orange peel ( fresh peel will do. I guestimate a chunk.)
1 tsp. Goji berries dried

I put these all in my teapot strainer basket. You could put these ingredients in a small muslin bag or into another tea strainer. Add one cup of boiled water and steep 5-10 minutes.

1/2 tsp. Rooibos.

1/2 tsp. dry ground Orange peel. O.K. it is not a perfect measurement, but neither is life.

1 tsp. Goji berries dried.

One cup of boiled water added to teapot.

Steeped 5 minutes or 10 if you are not in a hurry. Add some sweet if you like.

That was good. You see I do not care for Rooibos that much and Goji berries were not any better. Combined them with the wonderful flavor of Orange rind and it became a healthy, nutritious and tasy drink. A must try. If you do not have the Goji berries try it with just some Tea and Orange peel.

Have a beautiful day.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Spicy Okra Snack Recipe (Dehydrated)

I bought a small bag of Okra from the Farmers Market and decided to dehydrate them. I cut them up.

Added a T. of Emeril Spice (home made). Updated note: I think less spice would of worked for this estimated 1/2 lb. I bought a pound of Okra at the store recently and 1 T. spice blended better for the 1 lb.

Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning) from foodnetwork.com

2 1/2 T. Paprika
2 T. Salt
2 T. Garlic Powder
1 T. Black Pepper
1 T. Onion Powder
1 T. Cayenne Pepper
1 T. Dried Leaf Oregano
1 T. Dried Thyme

Mix all ingredients and store in an airtight jar or container
Yield: about 2/3 cup
Recipe From "New Orleans Cooking" by Emeral Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William Morrow, 1993

Mixed the spice onto the Okra and laid it out on a dehydrator rack. Dried at 135 for about 10 hours. Or  for others attempting this, dry until crisp. Drying times can vary for many reasons.

They shrunk quite a bit. They are very tasty and better stored on a glass jar. I just did a ziplock. I think I need a closed cabinet for more food storage. Will have to check out the Salvation army nearby. These are great for soups or gumbo to, and maybe something I have not thought of. You could try using just salt or another spice mix of choice.

I saved some seeds and attempting to dry them, or I may end up buying a packet. Maybe I can grow Okra next year. I hear they grow well in Texas, and "when in Rome" do/live as the Romans/Texans live. O.K. Maybe not to much. I think; if you grow what grows best in the climate and terrain you are living in, doing so is a more productive and logical choice.

Update: I am new to everything. I bought some more Okra from the store and found a big one that was stringy and tough, but their seeds are brown and very firm. These must be the ones to use for next years garden. Will try and sprout both next year and see what happens.

Baking a pumpkin whole

I have this little pumpkin that needs baking. I read online you can bake them whole. That sounds much easier than what I have been doing. (This pic. is slightly off, your eyes are O.K.)

I pre-heated the oven to 400 and placed the Pumpkin on a cookie sheet. Then put the pumpkin on the cookie sheet in the oven for 60 minutes.

Beautiful. you know it is done when you smell a sweet pumpkin aroma in the house. I put the flesh into a Food mixer this time. Which blended the pumpkin flesh so nice. Will have to use that machine for pumpkin flesh more.

Now you can put it in a freezer container or freezer ziplock bag, or dehydrate it. I chose to dehydrate so I can blend the pieces in the blender and store in a mason jar.

Looks good. My last pumpkin I baked had a tiny sliver of a hole in it and after baking and then halfway through drying at 135, it molded on me. Lesson learned. A pumpkin is bad if it has any size opening to it. The opening is just a breeding ground for mold and bacteria.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Ginger Chicken with Cumber recipe

My Cucumbers are producing and the thought of making pickles or soaking in Vinegar and sugar is just not up my alley.

I found a great recipe for a lunch or dinner meal that even my husband liked. Found at BBC website.

Garlic Chicken with Cucumber

1 lb. boneless/skinless chicken of choice
1 lb Cucumber
1-2 tsp salt
1 T. veggie oil
1 1/2 T. diced Garlic, and 1 T. green onions or other onion diced
1 T. Soy sauce
1 T. Rice vinegar
2 tsp. Chili Powder
2 tsp. Sesame oil

Cut chicken into one inch cubes and set aside.

Peel Cucumber, half it and cut into cubes, sprinkle with salt (I just sprinkled a few fingers full on and mixed). Put the cucumber in a colander and let sit and drain for 20 minutes. This removes excess water from Cucumber.

While that sits, I get the rest of the ingredients prepared.

After about 20 minutes. Rinse Cucumber cubes in running cold water and blot dry. Heat a wok or large frying pan until very hot. Add the  1 T. veggie oil or a little more and add chicken cubes. Stir-fry them for a few seconds.

Add all the ingredients except Cucumber and continue to stir-fry for another 2 minutes. Now add the Cucumber cubes and keep stir-frying the entire mixture for another 3 minutes. Serve at once.

This is a quick and easy meal to prepare. Most of the work is in the preparation.

So, I used less meat because it was just 2 of us eating this food. I used one 10.5 ounce Cucumber to. I think 2 cucumber that size would be great for 4 and of course about 1 lb. meat or more. I did not worry about the Cucumbers water content to much or the whole salting and sitting time.

The meal was very unique and good. I served it with NAAN bread and I am sure this would go just fine over rice and or with other breads, tortillas, rolls, or biscuits.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Dehydrating Orange Peel and uses

When I prepared Orange Marmalade, I skinned and cut up 10 oranges and made 2 cups thin sliced orange peel. I was still  over whelmed with left over orange peel. I remembered watching how to videos from Dehydrate2store and new that you could dehydrate orange, lemon, lime peel. Grind it up and save it. Well I had lots of Orange peel. Why not dehydrate it.  First I had to put the orange peel in a ziplock and in the fridge because my dehydrator was busy drying Pumpkin and Cucumber.

 I dehydrated it on 135 until crisp.

Put some of the dry Orange peel into the blender and blended well. It took 2 blending batches. I did not want to overwhelm the machine.

First batch filled my pint canning jar half way.

Second batch filled (with some tamping) all the way. So I put the lid on and in the dark, dry, cool pantry it went. Now I had to do some research. What do I do with this stuff.

I found that it is used in Chinese cooking; like stir fry's with orange flavor. it is ancient Chinese secret. Hee. Not really. Many countries all over the world utilize dry orange peel in  much of their cooking. It adds flavor to drinks, jams/conserves, salads, dressings, soups, and baked goods. There are many recipes out their that use orange peel and you can use the O.P.P.(Orange Peel Powder).

 Mandarin Orange/or regular Orange Tea, Mandarin being another dried skin option.
Add 1 T. dry orange peel ( does not have to be ground) to teapot of hot water. I estimate 4-6 cups. ?
1 T. loose tea leaves of choice. Let it steep for about 5-10 minutes and serve strained.
It is said to lower cholesterol and help with diabetes and heart disease.
This was from a site called Wandering Chopsticks. Vietnamese recipes

Orange peel is a Mosquito and fly repellent. I am thinking to you could put some orange peel fresh, dry or ground dry on a muslin bag tied and soak it in some hot water. Then take the cooled water and put it in a spray bottle. spray it on your skin for the biter bugs. I am just brain storming here. Will have to try it first and see.

Dry orange, lemon, lime peel is a good fire starter.
 It has an ingredient called Limonene that scientists are studying for its possible other uses like fuel.

O.P.P. for bathing
O.P.P. or just orange peel steeped in a cup of warm water for ant killer.

Dehydrating Pumpkin for storage and (Hot Pumpkin Drink Recipes)

My Sugar Pie Pumpkins have been vey productive this season. Running out of freezer space and found an online site called dehydrate2store that had how to videos, that gave great info. on how to dry Pumpkin and Butternut squash. It is under the title, "Pumpkin pie wih dehydrated Pumpkin". I baked the Pumpkin at a pre-heat of 350 for about 45-90 minutes, then scraped out the flesh and mashed it in a bowl. Layed it out on my fruit roll dehydrater sheets and onto the racks. I dehydrated at 135 until crisp. Half way through the process I flipped the Pumpkin on to the dehydrater racks.

I broke them into smaller chunks.

Then I placed the dried Pumpkin into a blender and blended well.

I placed it into a canning jar. Thats is one whole Pumpkin in a pint jar. Awesome. If you keep this in a glass sealed jar and in a dark, dry, cool place it will stay fresh longer. How long? I am not sure. I estimate at least  6 months and maybe to a year.

If making baked goods, add 1 part dry ground Pumpkin to 4 parts boild water and let sit about 15 minutes. (updated note: I recently made a pie and used 1 part dry ground pumpkin and 3 parts boiled water and this made me 1 1/2 cups equaling 12 oz. pumpkin puree to my like). So, feel free to change or re-arrange water measurements to suit your likes and needs.

I love to make hot drinks with this stuff. Add 1 T. to your hot coffee/decac with milk or cream/creamer of choice and sweetener of choice, with a pinch or 2 of Cinnamon or Pumpkin spice and you have a Pumpkin Latte'.

Or add 1 T. dry ground Pumpkin to mug, add hot milk of choice with some sweetner of choice, and a pinch or 2 of Pumpkin spice or Cinnamon. Stir, sip and enjoy.

((My favorite recipe is: 1T. dry ground Pumpkin placed in a mug. Now add 1 tsp. cocoa powder, 1 T. sweetner of choice and 2 T. dry plain creamer. Add boiled water and mix. If to hot add some cold water. Sip and enjoy.))
Yes there will be some bigger chunks at the bottom and end of your drink. I spoon those out and eat it after I finish my drink. Very tasty end of a hot drink. The nutrition and fiber is well worth having a spoon handy.

Note: 1 T. dry ground pumpkin equals an estimated 1/4 cup rehydrated pumpkin puree.

You can also add 1-3 tsp. to smoothies as a boost.