Sunday, May 13, 2018

Chickpea Curry

Well...International Chickpea Day is upon us!

PHOTO : Dan Diego Magazine

Originally cultivated in the Mediterranean and the Middle East, chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, have spread their culinary influence across the world.
The most common type of chickpea appears round and beige, other varieties can be black, green, and red. Like other legumes, such as beans, peas, and lentils, chickpeas are high in fiber and protein, and contain several key vitamins and minerals.

The lowly Chickpea also comes with a wide range of potential health benefits.
Behold :

chickpeas in a bowl1) Diabetes
Chickpeas are particularly high in fiber. Studies have shown that people with type 1 diabetes who consume high-fiber diets have lower blood glucose levels.
For people with type 2 diabetes, higher fiber intake may improve blood sugar, lipid, and insulin levels.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends a minimum of 21 to 25 grams (g) of fiber per day for women and 30 to 38 g per day for men.

2) Bone health
The iron, phosphate, calcium, magnesium, manganese, zinc, and vitamin K in chickpeas all contribute to building and maintaining bone structure and strength.
Though phosphate and calcium are both important in bone structure, the careful balance of the two minerals is necessary for proper bone mineralization - consumption of too much phosphorus with too little calcium intake can result in bone loss.
Bone matrix formation requires the mineral manganese, and iron and zinc play crucial roles in the production and maturation of collagen.
Adequate vitamin K consumption is important for good bone health because it improves calcium absorption and may reduce urinary excretion of calcium, making sure that enough calcium is available for building and repairing bone. Low intake of vitamin K is associated with a higher risk for bone fracture.

3) Blood pressure
Maintaining a low-sodium (low-salt) intake is essential for maintaining a low blood pressure, however increasing potassium intake may be just as important because of its vasodilation effects. According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, fewer than 2 percent of United States adults meet the daily 4,700-milligram recommendation.

4) Heart health
The high fiber, potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin B-6 content all support heart health. Chickpeas contain significant amounts of fiber, which helps lower the total amount of cholesterol in the blood, thereby decreasing the risk of heart disease.
In one study, those who consumed 4,069 milligrams of potassium per day had a 49 percent lower risk of death from ischemic heart disease compared with those who consumed less potassium (about 1,000 mg per day).

5) Cancer
Although the mineral selenium is not present in most fruits and vegetables, it can be found in chickpeas. It helps the enzymes of the liver to function properly and detoxify some cancer-causing compounds in the body. Additionally, selenium prevents inflammation and decreases tumor growth rates.
Chickpeas also contain folate, which plays a role in DNA synthesis and repair, and so helps prevent the formation of cancer cells from mutations in the DNA. Saponins, phytochemicals present in chickpeas, prevent cancer cells from multiplying and spreading throughout the body.
High-fiber intakes from chickpeas and other legumes, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables are associated with a lowered risk of colorectal cancer.
Vitamin C functions as a powerful antioxidant and helps protect cells against free radical damage.

6) Cholesterol
Research shows that including chickpeas in the diet lowers the amount of low-density lipoprotein, or bad cholesterol, in the blood.

7) Inflammation
The choline in chickpeas helps with sleep, muscle movement, learning, and memory. Choline also helps to maintain the structure of cellular membranes, aids in the transmission of nerve impulses, assists in the absorption of fat and reduces chronic inflammation.

8) Digestion and regularity
Because of their high fiber content, chickpeas help to prevent constipation and promote regularity for a healthful digestive tract.

9) Weight management and satiety
Dietary fibers function as "bulking agents" in the digestive system. These compounds increase satiety (a feeling of fullness) and reduce appetite, making people feel fuller for longer and thereby lowering overall calorie intake.
Consuming fruits and vegetables of all kinds has long been associated with a reduced risk of many lifestyle-related health conditions. Many studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like chickpeas decreases the risk of obesity, overall mortality, diabetes, heart disease, promotes a healthful complexion, healthful hair, increased energy, and overall lower weight.

10) Irritable bowel syndrome
Although chickpeas do not ease the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, they can be helpful to people affected by the condition. Patsy Catsos, a registered dietitian and author of "IBS - Free at Last!" suggests that increasing fiber consumption in individuals who have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can be a challenge. However, chickpeas offer a source of fiber that is well-tolerated by some IBS patients.Unfortunately, people with IBS who are following a low-FODMAP diet do have to restrict chickpeas.

One cup of cooked chickpeas contains:
    raw chickpeas
  • 269 calories
  • 45 g of carbohydrate
  • 15 g of protein
  • 13 g of dietary fiber
  • 4 g of fat
  • 0 g of cholesterol

Additionally, chickpeas contain vitamin K, folate, phosphorus, zinc, copper, manganese, choline, and selenium. Besides being an excellent vegan and gluten-free source of protein and fiber, chickpeas also contain exceptional levels of iron, vitamin B-6, and magnesium.

Photos and research courtesy : MNT

WOY was that a lot of info. Guess Chickpeas aren't just for Hummus anymore!
Recipe after the JUMP

Monday, December 18, 2017


As the Holidays are upon us, and, as if we really need more to eat, I present you with... 

National Roast Suckling Pig Day!


Unless you're Muslim, Hindu, or Vegan, just about all world cultures have a love affair with the roast Piggy (to be fair, though, some Muslims and Hindus also eat pork). Whether it's the South Americans, the Europeans, the Pacific Islanders, the Filipinos, and, especially the Chinese, all of these cultures have zillions of ways to roast this lovely beast.
So. on December 18th we celebrate the Piggy with this recipe :

or Roast Suckling Pig

PHOTO : Tadgh O Maoildearg

  • 1 Suckling Pig, about 5kg. (11 lbs.)
  • 100g (3.5 oz.) Sweet Sauce
  • 150g (5.8 oz.) Sweetened Vinegar (for Suckling Pig Sugar)
  • 65g (2.3 oz) Spiced Salt
  • Sesame Paste
  • Mashed Garlic
1. Knife open the abdomen of the suckling pig, remove the intestines, retain the kidney. Make a gash from its mouth to tail and chop open the backbone. Clean it and drain off water.

2. Coat the spiced salt and sugar on the surface of its inside to pickle for about 30 minutes. Keep the inside open with wooden sticks. Pour boiling water on the back first and then the sweetened vinegar for suckling pig.

3. Bake the pig with a weak fire to be half done. Coat its outside with peanut oil. Then bake it with a strong fire until it looks scarlet.

4. Mix up the sesame paste and mashed garlic into the seasoning for the dish.

Recipe from NetCooks

Now, all of this may seem a little vague. Would our Chinese brethren steer us wrong? I think not. However, I dare ya to try this one out. Just make sure you send me photos.


 ©2017 L. M. Sorré

Saturday, September 16, 2017


PHOTO : A Muse For Food

For Guacamole Day, I won't even begin to go into my own recipe and variations. Everyone has their own style and tastes

So, who am I to argue.

Check out All Recipes for their list of their Top 20 recipes for Guac.

Hit it!

Thursday, January 19, 2017


It’s hard to think of a more purely American food than popcorn. Whether it’s salted and buttered at a movie theatre, kettle corn at a state fair, or a caramel popcorn ball at holiday time, we devour the stuff.

But where did the concept of popped corn come from?
Corn or Maize is strictly a new world crop. It didn't exist in Europe, Africa, or the Far East.

"Smithers…I want some of this 'Popped Corn' everyone is talking about."

Well, blame the Mexicans. Maize is an indigenous crop that fueled all of the Native American cultures, Mayan, Aztec, Olmec, and Incan. This was a staple crop both for trade and for sustenance, including snacking. Which brings up popped corn. Archeologists have even found traces of popcorn in 1,000-year-old Peruvian tombs. Clearly, the ancients knew what they were doing despite the lack of a wheel.

Cut to, the first Thanksgiving feast, in Plymouth Colony in 1621. According to myth, Squanto himself taught the Pilgrims to raise and harvest corn, and pop the kernels for a delicious snack. Unfortunately, this story contains more hot air than a large bag of Jiffy Pop. While the early settlers at Plymouth did indeed grow corn, it was of the Northern Flint variety, with delicate kernels that are unsuitable for popping; roasting or boiling or animal feed were the best options for this product. 

So how did popped corn come about? Let's go back to the Native Americans, they know so much. French explorers wrote of Iroquois popping tough corn kernels in pottery jars filled with heated sand. The Iroquois nation spread throughout the Great Lakes region, so it is likely that settlers to upstate New York, Vermont and Quebec were the earliest European-American popcorn makers. By the mid 1800's, popcorn was beloved by families as a late-night snack in front of the fire, or at picnics and sociables. But mass consumption of the treat didn’t take off until the 1890's, after a Chicago entrepreneur named Charles Cretors built the first popcorn-popping machine.

Cretors was a candy-store owner who purchased a commercially made peanut roaster so he could offer freshly roasted nuts at his shop. But he was unhappy with the quality of the machine, and began tinkering with it. A few years later, Cretors had designed entirely new machines, powered by steam, for both nut roasting and popcorn popping. The steam ensured all kernels would be heated evenly, for the maximum number of popped kernels, and it also enabled users to pop the corn directly in the desired seasonings. By 1900, Cretors introduced a horse-drawn popcorn wagon, and the era of the popcorn eaters began.

Image : BSA

These days, the majority of Americans get their popcorn from a microwave, not a horse and buggy. The first patent for a microwave popcorn bag was issued to General Mills in 1981, and home popcorn consumption increased by tens of thousands of pounds in the years following. Today, Americans eat about a million pounds worth of (unpopped) popcorn a year.

"I like My Popcorn Bags!"
Image : Jill

So, on National Popcorn Day check out all these recipes for Savory and Sweet styles of popped corn.

Here's a favorite :

 Garlic Cheddar Popcorn Balls
Image courtesy : Kirbie's Cravings

Two (2) Large Glass Mixing Bowls
A Microwave that will hold one of the bowls
A sharp Knife or Food Processor
Parchment or Wax Paper
Your Manicured Hands

  • 50 cloves fresh Garlic (Yes, you read that right)
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • 4 cups (900g.) shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 5 quarts (20 cups) Popped Corn

Peel the Garlic and mince using a sharp knife or a few pulses of a food processor along with the Kosher Salt. Try not to create a pureé. This prevents sticking and absorbs all of the yummy Garlic juices.
Combine the minced Garlic/Salt mixture in a large mixing bowl with the shredded Cheddar Cheese.
In another large glass or plastic bowl, make alternate layers of Popped Corn and garlic-Cheese mixture, coating the Popped Corn as evenly as possible, especially at the edges of the bowl.
When layered, place the  bowl into the Microwave and cook for one (1) minute on High. Shake the bowl gently; rotate the bowl 180 degrees and cook for one (1) more minute. Do not overcook.
Immediately turn the gooey mixture out onto cookie sheet, and quickly shape into plum-size balls.
Place the balls onto sheets of Parchment or Wax Paper to set.
If the popcorn mixture gets too hard to mold, just zap it in the Microwave for a few seconds to keep it pliable.

Makes about 4 dozen popcorn balls, but that's up to you.

Recipe adapted by Wait At The Bar

Image Courtesy : Noble Popcorn

And, in case you're wondering, the world's largest popcorn ball was unveiled in Sac City, Iowa in 2009. It contained 900 pounds (408 kg.) of popcorn, 2,700 pounds (1225 kg) of sugar and 1,400 pounds (635 kg.) of Dry syrup mixed with water. It held the record until later that year when a group at the Indiana State Fair, built a 6,510 pound (2953 kg.) popcorn ball, beating Sac County’s record by 1,510 pounds (685 kg.), but the Indian ball was pulled apart to feed livestock at the end of the festivities. Sac City’s ball remains the largest popcorn ball still intact.

© L. M. Sorré

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Hot Buttered Rum Day

Nice and toasty on those cold winter nights. But what exactly is it??

Well, Kenneth Roberts, author of the 1937 bestselling historical novel Northwest Passage, says “After a man’s had two—three drinks of hot buttered rum, he don’t shoot a catamount. All he’s got to do is walk up to him and kiss him just once, then put him in his bag, all limp.”

"Dang! It's cold." - Kenny Roberts, Hell's Kitchen, NYC c. 1911

That notwithstanding, in the United States, hot buttered rum’s history dates back to the colonial days.  It was in the 1650's when the island of Jamaica began exporting molasses, a byproduct of sugar cane production, to Colonial America. Using the molasses, the New England Colonies began opening distilleries where they began to add distilled rum to hot beverages such as toddies and nogs, creating such beverages as hot buttered rum, eggnog, and many others.

"Hmmmm. Not enough Rum."

Traditionally, a hot buttered rum is made by blending a buttered rum batter with dark rum.  Dark rum is rum which has been barrel-aged for a long length of time to retain a deeper, molasses flavor.  Those that prefer a milder or a spicier taste may choose the option of using light rum or spiced rum mixed with the batter.

So, how do we do this in our modern over-technological age??

Well, the good folks over at CDKitchen have us all covered…


Slow Cooker Colonial Hot Buttered Rum

Photo : CDKitchen

Yes, you read that right. Hot Buttered Rum in a Crock Pot!

What better after a crumby day at the office and having to shovel out your car twice that day??

Here it is :

Your favorite Slow Cooker or Crock Pot
Some large Coffee Mugs
Spoons (you must have these somewhere)
A Ladle


  • 2 cups (450g.) firmly packed Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Sweet Butter (that means no salt, lunkhead)
  • 1 pinch Kosher Salt
  • 3 whole Cinnamon Sticks
  • 6 whole Cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
  • 2 cups (475ml.) of Dark Rum (your hangover favorite)
  • 2 quarts (1.9 l.) Hot Water
  • Heavy Cream, whipped, for topping
  • Additional Ground Nutmeg, for topping

Combine the Brown Sugar, Butter, Salt, Cinnamon Sticks, Cloves, and Nutmeg in the Crock Pot or Slow Cooker. Add the Hot Water. Stir well. 

Cover the pot and cook on LOW for five (5) hours. (Again, you read that right.)

After five (5) hours, add the Dark Rum; stirring to blend. 

Ladle from Crock Pot in warm Coffee Mugs with a scoop of Whipped Cream and a dusting of Nutmeg.

Slurp and enjoy!

Recipe courtesy CDKitchen
Adapted and Copyright by L.M. Sorré

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Raisin Bran….And A Return!

It's finally time…

To get back on track…



I know that I have forgotten this site due to other obligations which have now gone by the wayside.

However, Wiki has this to say, if you believe them….

"Skinner's Raisin Bran" was the first raisin bran brand on the market, introduced in the United States in 1926 by the Skinner Manufacturing Company.[2]
The name "Raisin Bran" was at one time trademarked by Skinner, however in 1944 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit found:
The name "Raisin-BRAN" could not be appropriated as a trade-mark, because: "A name which is merely descriptive of the ingredients, qualities or characteristics of an article of trade cannot be appropriated as a trademark and the exclusive use of it afforded legal protection. The use of a similar name by another to truthfully describe his own product does not constitute a legal or moral wrong, even if its effect be to cause the public to mistake the origin or ownership of the product." [2]

IMAGE SOURCE : runningwithspoons

So, now, it's time to get back to the kitchen and explore all of the things from the back cupboard….

Here is a blatant recipe that I stole from

So, that YOU too can make your own version.

2 quarts US

  1. Preheat oven to 350*. Combine bran, flours, powdered milk and salt in a mixing bowl.
  2. Mix the water, oil & honey together and stir into the dry ingredients. Use a large fork to mix well.
  3. Divide the dough in 4 pieces. Place one portion on a piece of floured waxed paper. Cover with another sheet of waxed paper.
  4. Gently roll out dough to a 12" x 15" rectangle.
  5. Remove top piece of waxed paper and invert the dough onto a greased cookie sheet. Remove the other sheet of waxed paper.
  6. Bake @ 350* for 16-18 minutes.
  7. Cool and break into pieces in a paper bag. Make smaller pieces using a rolling pin.
  8. Repeat with the other portions of dough (roll out & bake a portion whle one cools).
  9. When all cereal is cooled and broken up, combine with raisins. Store in a covered container.

I've never tried this mixture, so it's up to you and your GI tract to see if it works.

Now that that's over, please keep coming back. There are three (3) cookbooks in the works and I need all of the moral support and all the Olive Oyl that I can get.


©L. M. Sorré 2016

Saturday, March 17, 2012

St. Paddy's....

Just in time for Saint Patrick's Day,

Guinness Marshmallows

This recipe makes about three (3) dozen marshmallows, the first few will be neat but you'll be tempted make giant marshmallow blocks by the end, so your results may differ.

For the Bloom:
  • Three (3) tablespoons (1 ounce or 4 packets, 28 g.) Unflavored Gelatin
  • Four (4) teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  • 2/3 cup (148 ml.) flat Guinness Stout

For the Sugar Syrup:
  • 1 cup (237 ml.) flat Guinness Stout (basically, dump whatever is left in the bottle....unless you've been drinking it, in which case... Come on! It's flat beer!)
  • 1.25 cup (296 ml.) Corn Syrup or Sugar Cane Syrup
  • 1.5 cup white granulated Sugar
  • pinch Salt

Powdered Sugar for coating and a bit of Vegetable Oil for coating the pan

To flatten the beer, open the bottle and let it sit overnight. If you're in a rush, pour the beer into a bowl and stir with a whisk to release as much of the carbon dioxide as possible. Do not, and I repeat, DO NOT attempt to "whirr" the beer in a blender to de-fizz it. You will have Beer and foam everywhere, which could be fun if you're with that "certain" friend, but not today.

Line an 8x8-inch or 9x9-inch (23x23-cm.) square cake pan with parchment paper and brush it lightly with vegetable oil. I usually use two pieces of parchment, one going one way and the other crossing it, making sure to leave some extra length flopping over the sides of the pan to make "handles" for easy removal of the future Marshmallows.

To make the "Bloom", sprinkle the Gelatin into the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the Vanilla and flattened Guinness. Install the whisk attachment to your mixer and go to town until no lumps remain. If you don't have a stand mixer, a hand held mixer works just as well. If you don't have any power tools, a plain old whisk will do the job too, and give you a good workout. The important thing here is no lumps; so, how you get there is up to you.

For the Sugar Syrup, dump the flat Beer into a large six (6) quart heavy bottomed saucepan or enameled cast iron dutch oven, like Le Creuset, and place over medium heat. Simmer the Beer until it's reduced by half, then add in the Corn Syrup, Sugar, and Salt. Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the saucepan with the bulb in the simmering liquid. Turn the heat to high and bring the Sugar mixture to a boil. As the Syrup heats, it will foam up to nearly fill the pan. Keep an eye on it so it doesn't boil over. When the mixture is between 225°F and 230°F (107°C~110°C), let it bubble for about five (5) minutes and then remove it from heat. Don't just turn the burner off, physically move the pot onto a cool burner. You want the syrup to reach somewhere between 240°F- 250°F (115°C~121°C), any more and you have caramel, which is delicious, but not what we want. If you're having a hard time getting a read on the thermometer but think you're almost there, turn off the heat, stir down the bubbles really quickly using a wooden spoon and take a reading. You'll lose a degree or two of temperature, but you'll know for sure where you're at.

With the mixer on low speed, carefully pour the hot molten Sugar Syrup down the side of the bowl into the Gelatin Bloom. You may need a significant other or third hand with this step as handling molten sugar syrup can be dangerous. Slowly rev the mixer up to high once all the syrup has been added and let it whip for about eight (8) to ten (10) minutes, until it looks like glossy meringue and is very thick. For those of you not using power tools, this is where your forearm workout begins.

Now you've got Marshmallow! Pour the Marshmallow into the prepared cake pan and let it cure, uncovered, out on the counter for ten (10) to twelve (12) hours or overnight.

When the Marshmallows are cured, rub the top with a little Powdered Sugar and turn the Marshmallow bloc out onto a cutting board using the parchment paper handles. Peel the parchment paper off and rub the bottom, now top,  with more Powdered Sugar. Cut the Marshmallow bloc into 18-22 squares of equal size. Marshmallows will keep in a covered container for several weeks.

Chocolate. And Pretzels.
Yes, you read that right. After the Marshmallows have cured and have been cut up into cubes, you can then dip them in melted chocolate and then roll them around in crushed pretzels. Personally, I find that this overpowers the flavour of the Guinness, but I leave this up to you.

Adapted from The Kitchn.