Fun Fact Friday: Belarus (Poll)

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At traditional Belorussian weddings guests chant "Gozko" after the groom drinks from his glass. "Gozko" means bitter. The chanting urges the groom to kiss the bride, an act which should make his drink sweeter. If you catch a cold in Belarus, they might offer you any of these remedies: - vodka with salt and pepper - milk blended with raw egg yolk and honey - raspberry jelly - raspberry tea Much of Belarus cannot be farmed because of falloff from Chernobyl (70% of the … [Read more...]

Technique Thursday: Tornadoes and a video

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Dear readers, Our regularly scheduled programming has been interrupted by severe weather and tornado warnings. I do apologize, but all my brain power has been consumed by "fear of the tornado."  My husband claims I have a particularly irrational "fear of the tornado." Irrational? How can my fear of instant, windy death be irrational? I mean look at this: [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fbcm6TZNxcA&feature=related] Irrational? No, I don't think so. The method of death … [Read more...]

Menu: Belarus

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I went to the mall yesterday for mixing bowls and came out with a Belorussian! Yes, you read me right! One of the lovely women who work in Dillard's home department hails from Belarus. In fact, she only got to the United States 8 months ago! After I picked my jaw up off the floor, I invited her to come over, cook, and share her secrets with me. She said yes! Now if that's not a lightning bolt of good fortune, I don't know what is! Anyway, this menu is heavily influenced by her recommendations. I … [Read more...]

About the food of Belarus

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This week is going to be interesting. Simply put, my husband hates mushrooms, rye bread, sour cream, beets, and cabbage... which puts his taste buds in direct opposition to the lovely people of Belarus. Not one to be beat down by pickiness, I've resolved myself to be the cheerful, but broken record: "Honey, if an entire country eats it, then it can't be that bad!" And I'm going to ask (beg) him to eat his entire meal. We'll see. Located in eastern Europe, Belarusian culture blends … [Read more...]

Monday Meal Review: Barbados

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5 a.m. The tornado sirens sound. I bolt up in bed and stare, bug-eyed out the window. The trees are sideways. Sideways. Side. Ways. Practically laying over, playing dead. "This is it. I'm going to die," I mutter. My husband wakes up and groggily wanders out of the bedroom. I'm still frozen in bed. "Where are you going?" I whisper-yell, barely audible over the wailing wind and sirens. "I'm checking the weather on the computer," he says. I can barely hear him. I run into … [Read more...]

Recipe: Bajan Peas n’ Rice

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Serves 4 Peas n' Rice really is "beans" and rice. This savory side will go with almost anything - chicken, pork, fish, vegetables - especially grilled or roasted. In Barbados Peas n' Rice is often served with fried fish. Ingredients: 2 Tbsp vegetable oil 1 onion, diced 1 Anaheim pepper, minced 1 habanero pepper, minced (optional) 3 cups water + extra as needed 1/2 cup dried black eyed peas, soaked overnight 1 1/2 cups rice 1 tsp salt 1/2 tsp pepper 2 Tbsp fresh parsley Method: 1. In a … [Read more...]

Recipe: Bajan Sweet Potato Fish Cakes

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Makes about 7 average fish cakes Two kinds of fish cakes are popular in Barbados: deep-fried balls and pan-fried patties. This recipe makes lovely golden pan-fried patties. The sweet potato in these Bajan Fish Cakes is subtle and provides a great variation for those who don't like a lot of heat. Serve with hot sauce for those who enjoy it! Ingredients: 1/2 lb cooked sweet potato (about 1/2 an average sweet potato) 1/8 cup milk (only add as needed) 1/2 onion, grated (about 1/8 … [Read more...]

Recipe: Spiked Coconut Water

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Makes 1 drink Although I came up with this name, the drink idea came to me from Jimmy Buffett. He recommends this refreshing blend for the slightly tropical, headache free, sipping pleasure it provides. He probably doesn't use coconut rum, but I like my drinks sweeter than stout, so I went for the Parrot's Bay. Go with your instincts when making yours. Ingredients: 1 shot chilled coconut rum or plain, Caribbean rum 2 shots chilled coconut water (available at whole foods) 1/2 a lime, … [Read more...]