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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

The India-Africa Cooking Connection

For me, a hearty stew has always been the ultimate family-style comfort food. Prepare a big pot, fill the bowls of family, friends and honored guests, break bread, and chow down!! Such a meal can unite family and friends, make strangers feel welcome, and connect countries.





Indians love curry. Africans like peanuts. This tidbit of info gleaned from researching world cuisine, global flavors, and food history . 


* Michael Tracey is another one of my discoveries.

He hails from Johannesburg, South Africa , publishes a newsletter called "THE TASTE OF AFRICA", and is the author of "AFRICAN RECIPES", an ethnic cookbook .

The link below is to a Tanzanian recipe that links the #cultures of India and #Africa in every delicious spoonful.

CURRIED SPINACH AND PEANUT BUTTER STEW

clipartpanda.com







(FYI: This is NOT an affiliate referral or commercial advertisement. The recipe is one of 260 recipes published in the cookbook which the author made available online. No purchase is required.)


This content first appeared on Aug 5, 2015 at Persona Paper

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Indian cuisine South Africa style blends Indian and African foods


Indian cuisine South Africa style blends Indian and African foods

South African Indian diaspora cuisine is deliciously distinct from that found in India itself. South Africans of Indian origin are generally descended either from South Indian people who arrived in the 1860s to work on the KwaZulu-Natal sugar plantations or from subsequent businessmen who came to service the retail needs of the farm workers.

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Africa's 20 most popular foods: Biltong, fufu, injera, couscous, ugali anyone?


Africa's 20 most popular foods: Biltong, fufu, injera, couscous, ugali anyone?

African cuisine is as diverse as the hundreds of different cultures and groups that inhabit the continent. This diversity is reflected in the many local culinary traditions in terms of choice of ingredients, style of preparation and cooking techniques.

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Indian Food - Myth or Fact

Do you like Indian food? I do! Although must admit, had to acquire a taste for it. My first time trying a so-called authentic Indian dish was at one of those American mall-type food courts, where there are all kinds of restaurants for you to choose from. That probably wasn't the best place for me to get my first taste. Was taken aback by some sort of flavor or spice that my palette was clearly not expecting. It threw me off!


Later on, when cooking channels became so popular on television, started learning how to prepare Indian dishes. There was the one lady who referred to herself as a “spice goddess”.  Because really it comes to cooking, Indians do know their spices.  No argument.  Her recipes always seemed so simple, easy to prepare, and she explained the herbs and spices she used for flavoring and showed you how to incorporate them into the recipes.  Crush these seeds.  Warm this spice in the pan.  Sprinkle these herbs.  Decided to try Indian food again and was very pleased with the tasting tests.

Below is a link to a blog post that eliminates common myths about Indian food. Didn't know there were myths but good to know they can be ignored. What were some of the myths?

  • All Indian food is spicy.
  • All Indian food is vegetarian.
  • All Indian food is overloaded with curry.

Discover the Truth behind the Indian Food Myths



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Content first published Mar 21, 2015 via Persona Paper


5 Things You Thought You Knew about Indian Food


5 Things You Thought You Knew about Indian Food

By Petrina Verma Sarkar Come on, be honest. What are the first things that come to your mind when you think of Indian food? Hot, spicy, oily, rich, fatty, bad for you, difficult and time-consuming to cook, curry powder....


15 Interesting Facts Related To Indian Food You Should Know


15 Interesting Facts Related To Indian Food You Should Know

Facts that will blow your taste buds


20 unbelievable facts about Indian food


20 unbelievable facts about Indian food

Before it turned into an art that involved culinary expertise, food in India was about rasas and doshas. Taste or rasa in Sanskrit guides the tongue and it is a balance or misbalance of these rasas that cause or correct the doashas in body.


Known and unknown facts about Indian cooking


Known and unknown facts about Indian cooking

It is about experimenting with different spices and ingredients and to come up with your own secret recipes. Then just go for it, Visit Masala Fry! Enjoy!


Indian ladies: glitter-graphics.com

Monday, December 26, 2016

3 Spices That Hold the Secrets of Longevity Per Mao Shing Ni (Dr. Mao)

Mao Shing Ni (Dr. Mao), who is a board-certified anti-aging expert shares information about the 3 best spices for a longer life.

Before you click the link (below) to the original article, give yourself 3 chances to guess the right combination of 3 spices that have been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine and other Eastern traditions to cure common illnesses and maintain good health.  I only guessed one of the spices.  1 out of 3 is lower than a Grade F!!

But now that I know what they are, I'm glad they're common, inexpensive and very easy to find.  So I don't travel over land and sea in search of the 3 mythical spices from the lost country of "Where Did You Get that?!"




primary_spices
Photo: Rev Dan Catt/Flickr 
 
 
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"Garlic is as good as ten mothers."
 - Ancient Telugu proverb from India





Saturday, December 24, 2016

History Lesson : English Tea

Tea in England

Author: AnutaVasil



The English primarily drank coffee and wine as their staple drink, and tea was unknown in England till as late as 1662. In 1662 Charles II married Catherine of Braganza of Portugal, and it was his new bride who brought with her a preference of tea. She served tea instead of wine, ale and spirit. Tea soon acquired the status of royal drink and a social nicety for the rich.

However, tea's acceptance by British masses was quite slow. It was in late 1700 that tea's popularity picked up. As tea came from British colonies, it came to be viewed as a national drink, with patriotic sentiments attached to it. Another reason which contributed to its popularity was the ease of its preparation technique. While coffee grounds could be brewed only once, and reusing the same ground yielded a much inferior flavour, tea leaves could be brewed several times without any significant drop in the quality of liquor. As tea was a high class drink and hence expensive, the British masses bought second hand, brewed leaves and brewed them longer to compensate. Tea was thus gradually finding place in British everyday life.

Soon, tea began to be sold in London coffee houses. Tea was heavily advertised as a medicinal drink which helped maintain health and beauty. The coffee house owners charged heavily for a cup of tea, as much as 6-10 pounds per cup. The government soon imposed various taxes, regulations and restrictions on sale of tea, with a view to cash in on the growing tea trend. This even led to tea being smuggled into England. Finally the taxes were waived off to stop this illegal smuggling.

Tea, meanwhile, continued to grow in popularity. Around 1800, there developed an "Afternoon tea" culture, wherein rich ladies invited their friends for a cup of tea in the afternoon. They also served pastries, sandwiches or some snack along with it. It was accompanied by social graces, refined conversation, sweet gossip and polished etiquette. Yet another popular tea trend was serving tea in tea gardens. Pleasure gardens like Vauxhall or Ranelagh Gardens provided lush lawns for public to stroll and enjoy a hot cup of tea. The working class, however, took a break from work in the evening, and relaxed with tea.

The most well liked and sought after teas were English breakfast tea and Earl Grey. English breakfast tea, as its name, was consumed mostly in the morning as its strong caffeine helped shake off sleepiness and start the morning energetically. It blended sumptuously with milk and sugar, and could be enjoyed anytime of the day. The Earl Grey provided a classic blend of fine black tea with bergamot essence. It was considered more sophisticated a tea.

In 1875, Thomas Lipton aggressively advertised tea. He replaced the coffee gardens in Ceylon with tea plantations, and opened his first tea shop. By the end of 19th century, he had almost set up his Tea Empire and laid the foundations of modern tea trade. The Indian and Ceylon blends, Brooke Bond and Lipton found a firm place in British everyday life. Tea had finally "arrived" in England.


About the Content Provider
History of Tea and Tea Shops

Article Source: www.articlesbase.com/tea-articles/tea-in-england-4328476.html

***
BLOG PUBLISHER'S COMMENTS:   Hope you enjoyed this article.  Do you also enjoy tea?  Before you leave this please click the link to visit.





http://shantiriiessence-blog.tumblr.com/post/12471507737

Five Exotic Spices (Guest Post Submitted by Melisa Marzett)

Even though many herbs and spices are now readily available in local grocery stores all around the world or can easily be purchased online, most of us don't know know the history of these marvelous cooking ingredients and which country is responsible for introducing these exciting flavors to the global community.  Sharing a brief introduction to five (5) exotic spices:


1. Asafetida. This is an Asian spice made from the roots of certain species of Ferula. It is a gum-like spice with a very strong and unpleasant smell.  Actually, the name of the spice has a Latin origin, which means “evil-smelling gum”.  Asafetida is common in Indian vegetarian cuisine and is often a main ingredient in rice and bean dishes. Additionally, it has a wide range of medicinal properties and is beneficial for people with digestive disorders, high cholesterol, and/or nervous disorders.  Asafetida is rich in minerals and nutrients, such as iron, calcium, phosphorus, and protein.  Although most chefs and cooks rarely prepare a dish without onion and garlic, some people do not eat onion or garlic.  Certain people are allergic to onions and for some people garlic causes extreme heart burn.  Asafetida is an ideal spice for those people.  In fact, its smell is similar to both onion and garlic.






2. Dried Avocado Leaves.  This spice (or herb) originated in Mexico. It is one of the most popular spices in Mexican cuisine.  Avocado leaves have an aniseed fragrance; however, these dried leaves are odorless and have pungent taste. Dried avocado leaves are added to bean or meat dishes. Regarding health benefits, they are useful for people who have kidney stones and hypertension. Noteworthy:  Only certain varieties of avocado leaves are to be used in cooking or for medicinal purposes because some kinds of avocado leaves can contain toxic substances.

Additional References:

Avocado Leaves: A Secret Mexican Ingredient

Avocado Leaves: A Secret Mexican Ingredient

Avocado Leaves: A Secret Mexican Ingredientby Victoria ChallancinLove at First Bite. Like any motivated foodie, I almost made myself sick sampling, musing, and guessing what unknown ingredient I was tasting in what appeared to be an ordinary black bean dip.


3. Epazote. This is another essential spice used in Mexican cuisine. Its extraordinary (or strange) scent can be described as a combination of kerosene, mint, and citrus. Epazote is made from the leaves of Mexican herb called dysphania ambrosioides (aka "Mexican tea").  It is used with bean and meat dishes. Additionally, it can be used in soups.

Additional Reading and Recipes:




4. Grains of Paradise. This delicious spice is an integral part of West African cuisine. It is obtained from flower called Aframomum melegueta. Africans believed that this flower grew in Eden. Grains of paradise look like seeds and have jasmine, citrus, and hazelnut odor. It can be added to meat, fish, and potato dishes.

Link of Interest:
Find spices ordered according to the region:
GEOGRAPHIC SPICE INDEX


Ras El Hanout (4.0 Oz) By Zamouri Spices

Ingredients include over 30 different herbs and spices, such as: 

 Grains of Paradise, Lavender, turmeric, ajawan seeds, kalajeera, ginger, galangal, oris root, rose buds, monk's pepper, cinnamon and more!



5. Juniper Berries. Actually, juniper berries are more likely to be cones than berries. It has the smell of fir and is used for cooking meat dishes, especially stewed rabbit or beef. These “berries” grow on the juniper tree, are common throughout Europe,  included in ancient Greek recipes, and have been found in the Egyptian pyramids.  A wide range of German traditional dishes are cooked with juniper berries.


SPICE Spotlight: Juniper Berries

http://everydayspices.webs.com/apps/blog/show/6664512-spice-spotlight-juniper-berries



♦  Hope you enjoyed this intro.
About the writer:  Melisa Marzett works for: bigpaperwriter.com.  She does excellent research and can pen articles and supply blog publishers or website owners with quality content on almost any topic.  View the About tab on her Google+ profile for more samples of her work.



Friday, December 23, 2016

Honey Chai Cake Recipe | Arabic Food (Reblog)

Are you curious about global flavors?  You have wanderlust but can't wander too far because your travel budget is extremely limited?  Describing myself, of course.  My travel adventures are accomplished mainly through the Internet and television.  Was watching a TV cooking show and the host asked one of his guests who was a world traveler, which part of the world had the "best food" (in his opinion).  He said he enjoyed food prepared in the Middle East.  

Image credit:  Arabic Food I, photo by Victor Maia, found at Flickr.com
Arabic Food I

Connecting the dots.  

Several months back, began using the Google+ collections feature to maintain a collection of posts and links related to World Cuisine.  In the process, stumbled across the Arabic Food Recipes blog.  My husband and kids are turned on to chai tea. Even though I am a coffee fiend, having been encouraged by them to try a cup, it's very easy to understand why they are chai tea lovers.  At the aforementioned food blog found a cake recipe and thought to myself:

  • 'Chai tea is delicious. Why not chai cake?'  
(See link shared below.)

Here is another thing to note about this blog.  When many of us are enjoying the holiday season, we say "Happy Holidays" to others.  Why?  It's not to be anti-Christmas.  America is a diverse nation.  Some folks do not celebrate Christmas.  But they do celebrate a holiday!  This blog has holiday recipes for Christmas, EID, and Ramadan.  Cool huh?



Honey Chai Cake Recipe

Honey Chai Cake Recipe

A delicious honey cake with tea, covered with vanilla and white chocolate icing, no one can resist it! Shaikha - founder of "When Shaikha Cooks" blog - prepared for you this unique recipe, to prepare it easily, especially for when you're expecting friends.




Slow-roasted lamb shoulder with flavours of shawarma recipe


“There’s nothing worse than being stuck in the kitchen on Christmas day while all your guests are enjoying themselves outside, so this DIY lamb shawarma recipe is the perfect solution. ...”

Slow-roasted lamb shoulder with flavours of shawarma recipe

The Arabic Food Recipes Kitchen (The home of Delicious Arabic Food) invites you to try Slow-roasted lamb shoulder with flavours of shawarma recipe. Enjoy the Arabic cuisine and learn how to make Slow-roasted lamb shoulder with flavours of shawarma.




Eid Kaak with Dates Recipe


Eid Kaak with Dates Recipe

Cooking time: 20 minutes servings: 100 Ingredients Dough: 2 cups very hot margarine7 cups flour2 tsp smell of kaak (special kaak spices)2 tbsp toasted sesame1/2 cup warm water1 tbsp yeast 1 tsp sugar1/2 cup milk Stuffing: 500 grams Ajwa (dates)1 tsp cinnamon For garnish: Fine powder sugar Directions 1.




Eggplant With Lamb, Tomato and Pine Nuts Recipe


“ … this traditional Lebanese dish is made for celebratory meals and gatherings.

Eggplant With Lamb, Tomato and Pine Nuts Recipe

With its layers of golden eggplant, cinnamon-scented lamb, and sweet tomato sauce topped with melted cheese, this traditional Lebanese dish is made for celebratory meals and gatherings. Even better, it's just as good served warm or room temperature as it is hot from the oven.




Sunday, December 18, 2016

Food Bloggers Keep on Blogging!

2016 is winding down.  Food Ways was started in November.  Taking the opportunity to spotlight food bloggers who have been actively publishing throughout the year and even in previous years.  Their persistence motivates me.  Sharing a link to their blogs below.  It's my way of wishing them a joyful, healthy and safe holiday season, and continued success and prosperity in the upcoming new year.  

Some shares may not be "typical" of the traditional western Christmas celebration, but I also have an interest in world cuisines and global flavors.  There's no rule that says a traditional menu can't be modified with the addition of new, different and tasty recipes.  After all, when it comes to food and family, we make our own rules and traditions!  Don't we?  Enjoy!

Happy Blogging Food Bloggers!
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Sour Cream Pound Cake Poinsettia Cookies

Sour Cream Pound Cake Poinsettia Cookies

There comes a point every holiday season where you realize you cannot do it all. You cannot make homemade lip balm and vanilla extract for everyone on your list, you cannot stand in a 3-hour line at the post office for Christmas stamps, you cannot be 17 different places on Christmas Eve, you cannot scrub the baseboards before company arrives, and you cannot make homemade cookies and icing when your child tells you he needs cookies the next morning.

  

Sprite and The Refreshing Truth About Korean Food


Sprite and The Refreshing Truth About Korean Food

Traditional Korean cuisine uses fresh ginger, garlic, green onions, sesame oil, chili flakes, soy sauce and fermented chili paste to create bold and distinctive flavors we can't help but crave. Salty, spicy and tangy flavors are often tempered and balanced with sweeter notes.

  

Crispy Spicy Arbi

Crispy Spicy Arbi

This is one of my favourite fries and it can be done quicky , very crispy as well and goes very well with steamed rice or can be had as a starter also....so try this spicy dish....am sure u all will just love this flavourful and yummy dish 1/2 tsp red chilli powder, 1/2 tsp coriander powder, 2 tbsp oil + oil for shallow frying Pressure cook the arbi till one whistle or till it gets cooked.

  

Cassoulet - The World's Most Complex Simple Recipe

Cassoulet - The World's Most Complex Simple Recipe

There are so many reasons not to make cassoulet. You need lots of ingredients, some of which take effort to find. There are many steps, and even some of the steps have steps. It will also seem like you used every pot and pan in the kitchen, which will be trashed by the time you're done.

  

A Christmas Tree Bento

A Christmas Tree Bento

We're keeping holiday bentos simple right now as we finish unpacking boxes, but that doesn't mean the food can't still be festive! I found my favorite big box of cookie cutters, complete with my very favorite simple Christmas tree cutter.

  

Yalda Night (Winter Solstice) 2015 and Shami Haveej - Carrot Shami Kabab with Sweet & Sour Tomato Sauce

Yalda Night (Winter Solstice) 2015 and Shami Haveej - Carrot Shami Kabab with Sweet & Sour Tomato Sauce

شب چله/شب یلداShab-e Yalda/Shab-e Chelleh, the ancient Persian celebration of the longest night, dates back thousands of years ago to the birth of میترا Mithra the god of light who was born on the eve of yalda (winter solstice).After the longest night of the year the days will gradually become longer symbolizing the victory of light over darkness.

Friday, December 16, 2016

#FoodieFriday : Pesto Around the World

Going to take aim at pesto for my foodie Friday topic.  Another wonderful delight for enlivening salads, adorning sandwiches, dressing pasta … you name it! Always sing the praises of salsa. This time, doing a song and dance routine for pesto.





Hear the word pesto and one usually always thinks Italian. Right? But different cultures have their own version of pesto. Africa. Mexico. Australia. This link is an awesome foodie find! Not only does it tell you the main ingredients in everybody's version but it introduced me to a new word. “Permaculture”.

Content first appeared at Persona Paper on July 27, 2015.

Preserving With Pesto – It’s Not Rocket Science




Preserving With Pesto - It's Not Rocket Science


Wheatgrass Pesto Recipe | inSpiral


Wheatgrass Pesto Recipe | inSpiral

Here is a quick recipe for Raw Wheatgrass Pesto, using our premium, organic, raw super food powder. This will m ake your taste buds go wild! Adds a good dose of vitality to any diet. Made in a blender there is virtually any preparation to do! Just the way we like it!

Carrot Greens Pesto Recipe




Mexican Pesto Recipe by emilie_ 1 - Key Ingredient


Mexican Pesto Recipe by emilie_ 1 - Key Ingredient

Place the pumpkin seeds in a food processor or blender; pulse until coarsely chopped.

Thai Basil Pesto


Thai Basil Pesto

This one's for my Thai lovers. But before I even start talking Thai basil pesto, I feel moved to have a little rant about how much I love Thai food. It's like an instant exotic vacation right in my kitchen.

Raw Macadamia Pesto | Vegan Semi-Dried Tomato Pesto | The Blender Girl


Raw Macadamia Pesto | Vegan Semi-Dried Tomato Pesto | The Blender Girl

This raw vegan semi-dried tomato and macadamia pesto is super easy and seriously delicious. Just throw everything into your food processor.

African Blue Basil and Lavender Pesto


African Blue Basil and Lavender Pesto

Combine all ingredients, except cheese, in bowl of food processor. Process, adding additional oil or water, until desired consistency is reached. Stir in cheese. Use immediately or store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. (Tip: pesto can also be frozen in ice cube trays.)

Chimichurri Pesto Sauce - Culinary Envy


Chimichurri Pesto Sauce - Culinary Envy

Chimichurri Pesto Sauce combines Italian parsley, cilantro and basil with jalapeño and parmesan cheese. It is vibrant, nutty and tangy. Perfect for pasta. I will never forget the first time I tried Chimichurri Sauce. It was at my incredibly talented friend Bibi's home. She had me over for dinner and prepared the most mouth-watering steak.




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Amore Pesto Paste - $5.75

Amore Garlic Paste - $5.75

Amore Italian Chili Pepper Paste - $6.15

Amore Italian Herb Paste - $6.75

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Home Cooking Presented by Hilda's Touch of Spice

Spotlight on another awesome food blog. This one has been save in my bookmarks for forever! It's called “Hilda's Touch of Spice”. The blog is published by Hilda Mascarenhas. Her recipes include a wonderful sampling of European, Asian and American cuisines, and categories are for holidays, by countries, vegetarian versus non-vegetarian, desserts, side dishes, soups and salads, and more! The best way to describe her blog is using her own words:

"Mouth watering recipes & essential cooking advice, helping you to add the right Touch of Spice to make simple home cooking special!"

That's the description from her Facebook page.  In 2013 her page reached 1,000 Likes.  As of today (2016), it has over 5,000 Likes!  Isn't that marvelous?

Since it's the holiday season you're going to love this share. It's her Christmas Special menu, followed by a few more selected blog posts that I like. Enjoy!


Christmas Special Menu - Hilda's Touch Of Spice

(Click here to view all of Hilda's Christmas recipes.)

Christmas Special Menu

This year Christmas is going to be filled with traditional sweets at our home.

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Japanese Cheesecake


Japanese Cheesecake

Popularly known as "Japanese Cotton Cheesecake" due to its cotton texture this beautiful baked cheesecake is delicately soft. Very famous years ago on the net, you will find several recipes to this delicious cake.

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Steamed Momos


Steamed Momos

The weather in Pune is chilly & cold in the nights.

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Carrot Coconut Ladoos / Gajar Nariyal Ladoos


Carrot Coconut Ladoos / Gajar Nariyal Ladoos

Two of my eternal favorites... Carrots and Coconut. Just can't do without them! 🙂 They bind beautifully to form into gorgeous,sweet and yummy ladoos. A perfect ball of melt in the mouth goodness to satiate that sweet craving.

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Chicken Handi (Murg Handi)


Chicken Handi (Murg Handi)

Rustic and full of flavor this delectable Chicken/Murg Handi is so succulent. Like many who love this dish, we are no exception. There are many good restaurants in Pune who prepare this dish really well. Making an almost authentic, traditional Murg handi at home is an experience to be savored.


Other food bloggers highlighted by Food Ways:




Monday, December 5, 2016

How to Cook Italian : Easy Recipes from CiaoFlorentina

Many people love Italian food. Although my husband says he doesn't. Even though he watches and sometimes records the cooking shows of Lidia Bastianich on Create TV. When we subscribed to cable TV, he rarely missed an episode of Giada De Laurentiis on Food Network. (O.o)


https://eeschannel.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-fall-neapolitan-style-dinner.html

I heart most things Italian, with food being at the top of my list. There are so many Italian food bloggers out there. In fact, my third post for this blog shined the spotlight on one of my favorite blogs: JovinaCooks Italian.

Here is another one of my faves: Easy Italian Recipes – CiaoFlorentina.  Cooking advice is provided and many recipes are gluten-free, paleo, and vegetarian. A few selected posts appear below to ignite your curiosity to know more and whet your appetite for some tasty Italian cuisine.

Chocolate Covered Oranges with Red Pepper Flakes * Christmas Recipes


Chocolate Covered Oranges with Red Pepper Flakes *

The ultimate Chocolate Covered Oranges: tangerine and orange slices dipped in dark chocolate and sprinkled with red pepper flakes for a nice kick . It is that time of year ago, when our orange trees are so loaded the branches started breaking. Which means there are oranges and tangerines all over our kitchen.

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Replace potato chips with a healthier alternative. How to Make Brussel Sprout Chips (Crispy) *


How to Make Brussel Sprout Chips (Crispy) *

Crispy and light baked Brussel sprout chips with just a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of sea salt. Easy to make and loved by all! Who is as excited as me about fall and baking trays upon trays of these Brussel sprout chips ?

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Vegetarian Calzone Recipe *


Vegetarian Calzone Recipe *

Italian vegetarian calzone, pizza pockets stuffed with veggies and cheese and grilled in a cast iron skillet, a vegetarian's dream ! First of all, you absolutely gotta make this vegetarian calzone you guys ! I had them for breakfast and I'm not even ashamed to admit it .

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Do you know your thyme? Thyme Varieties For Cooking *


Thyme Varieties For Cooking *

There are quite a few thyme varieties for cooking out there. Thyme is one of my favorite herbs to cook with and plant in my containers, but in all honesty I stick to 2 maybe 3 varieties in my herb garden.

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Crushed Red Pepper 4 oz - $4.75

from: OliveNation


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