Menu: Turkey

“In a flat country, a hillock thinks itself a mountain” Proverb from Turkey Friends, let’s knock the hillocks of life to the ground. And let’s do it with Turkish food. This week, I created a fun party menu – a Turkish meal that can be enjoyed on a balmy summer evening, under starlight, with a few close friends and family.  It’ll inspire laughter, some much needed spice, and full hearts. After all, isn’t that what we all need? A little time to chill out with our loved ones, and get some perspective on the bumps and bumbles (and hillocks) of life? All recipes and meal review will be posted throughout the week. Lamb Flatbread “Pizza” | Lahmacun [Recipe] Lahmacun is an incredible spiced lamb pizza. There are so many flavors, you might not be able to see beyond the fireworks in your mouth. Somewhere in that explosion of deliciousness, I promise you, there’s tomatoes, onion, paprika, parsley, mint, and more. Not to mention the DIY toppings: red onion, parsley, mint, lemon juice, and sumac. Yessss. Turkish …

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Menu: Tunisia

“If the full moon loves you, why worry about the stars?” Tunisian Proverb I never thought I’d compare tuna fish to the beautiful moon. But here we are. This week, there were so many beautiful recipes to choose from; I had a hard time choosing what best represented Tunisia. But then I read the proverb posted above, and realized maybe it was more important to showcase what made my stomach crawl. So I scanned the dozens of recipes for two dishes that could make my stomach growl. The first one? A grilled salad topped with tuna. I know funky tuna is not for everyone, but man, oh, man I love it (am I the only one that loves a good bit of tuna?). As for the dessert, I found something just as tantalizing. In short, I found a glittering menu, or moon, so to speak … so I didn’t worry about the stars I couldn’t get to.  All recipes and the meal review will be posted throughout the week. Tunisian Grilled Salad | Salata Mishwiyya [Recipe] A charred, …

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Menu: Trinidad and Tobago

Keith and I just celebrated five years of marriage. There’s an old saying from Trinidad and Tobago that sums up the depths to which I love this man: There’s more in the mortar than the pestle. In other words, there’s more to this man than meets the eye. He’s not just a pair of jaw dropping hazel eyes. He’s not just the funny one. He’s sure. Stable. All things committed. And I’m so lucky to have him. What better way to celebrate my husband than two of his favorite things? Spicy food and orange juice. Sweet and hot. Please and thank you. These recipes will be posted throughout the week along with the meal review. Orange Juice Rice [Recipe] Take ordinary rice on a tropical spin; cook it up with orange juice! This pale orange, fruity dish is a must-have on the side of any spicy food. Caribbean Stew Chicken [Recipe] Stew chicken is a celebration of the Caribbean. There are so many seasonings in here – a true melting pot of flavor characteristic of the West …

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Menu: Tonga

Apparently the fine people of Tonga have quite the sweet tooth. Whether it’s the coconut caramel sauce (which they put on everything from boiled taro to dumplings), or the watermelon chiller, Tonga serves up sweetness in all they do. I for one can appreciate the natural sweetness, especially in the drink. Try the sweet potatoes as a snack or on the side of grilled meats. The drink is great any time of day, but is a perfect alternative to punch or lemonade at your next gathering.  Oh, and, yay for an accidentally vegan menu. Because… why not? All recipes and the meal review will be posted throughout the week. Sweet Potatoes in Coconut Caramel Sauce [Recipe] Gussy up your candied sweet potatoes like they do in Tonga -with a totally vegan coconut caramel sauce and a dusting of shredded coconut. Pretty and easy! Coconut Watermelon Refresher | ‘Otai [Recipe] Mashed watermelon blended with coconut milk and shredded coconut. Don’t forget the twist of lime! P.S. As you enjoy your meal, consider sharing the Tongan greeting, which is …

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Menu: Togo

The last three people I’ve told that I’m cooking Togo have asked me what kind of food Togo is, not realizing Togo is a small west African country. So, friends, let’s learn together. Let’s put the Togolese spirit on our tables… along with a bit of their food. We’ll get to the menu we selected in a moment. First, let’s discuss the ‘spirit’ part of the meal. This week, I sought out some inspirational words from Togo. I had no choice. I’ve been feeling overwhelmed lately. For starters, I’ll be speaking in front of 3,000 people at the World Domination Summit in Portland, Oregon. No biggie (total biggie!!).  Second, I’m about to turn in the next 1/3 of my memoir (I foresee a few all-nighters to finish the pages up). Third, my daughter is about to turn four (when on earth did that happen?). Fourth, I’m about to celebrate my fifth year of marriage (seriously, where has the time gone?). Fifth, I just spent the weekend visiting with my BFF from high school. It’s been …

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Menu: Thailand

“Friends for a meal are easy to find, friends until end of life are difficult to find” (Thai Proverb) Summer is the time of easy friendships, where the only things that matter are cold drinks, fresh food, and a patch of shade. Dinnertime is less strict, and I find myself veering towards later, lighter meals. Like this one. So now all you need is to find someone to share it with (P.S. Speaking of which, I can’t decide if that Thai proverb is encouraging or discouraging, but there’s one thing I know for sure. Whoever you make this meal for will certainly be woo’d for the summer, if not for life.) The key to Thai food is balance. If you serve something hot and spicy, you must serve something sweet. Which is exactly what we did. All recipes and the meal review will be posted throughout the week. Green Papaya Salad | Som Tam [Recipe] One of the easiest Thai dishes, with an orchestra of flavor. Think spicy, lime-tastic, and salty. This is salad all grown …

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Menu: Tanzania

“The roaring lion kills no game” Tanzanian Proverb In honor of this all-too true saying from Tanzania, we’re going all veggie this week. Truth is, I’ve been doing my fair share of ‘roaring’, which leaves me with a deficit of time for anything but quick (but fun!) dishes. Veggies fit the bill rather perfectly. In fact, our menu feels like a bulletin from Smokey the Bear, but without fires… and lots of veggies… “Thanks to Tanzania, you, too, can prevent veggie boredom!”  Whether you’re tossing corn and peas in your mashed potatoes, or stirring peanut butter and coconut milk into your leafy greens, Tanzania definitely steps up with fresh ideas for your weeknight side dishes. All recipes and the meal review will be posted throughout the week. Greens with veggies & Peanuts | Kisamvu [Recipe] This vegan treat is inspired straight from the heart of Tanzania; enjoy spinach cooked with carrot, onion, pepper, and a creamy, tantalizing blend of peanut butter and coconut milk. Mashed Potatoes with Veggies | Irio [Recipe] Turn boring mashed potatoes …

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Menu: Tajikistan

This week’s theme is community and reunion. We spent the last ten days visiting my family, some of whom I haven’t seen in nearly three years. Tajik food is often enjoyed from one giant platter, so the timing was perfect. I made three giant platters of plov, and all 18 of us came together around them (The bonus? Only three dishes to wash!) Lamb Plov [Recipe] Plov is popular throughout Western Asia, and for good reason. This is rice cooked with carrots, turnips, a half ton of onion, and bits of lamb.  Bits of raisin and dried apricot add delightful sweetness. While it sounds ultra simple, plov is surprisingly flavorful and perfect for a large gathering. Yogurt Non [Recipe] Tajik folk love this highly ornate flat bread made with yogurt and some wheat flour… it makes a great dinnertime staple and would go with nearly any dish.

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Menu: Taiwan

This week, while we’re visiting family in Boston and New Jersey, I’m sharing one simple celebration recipe with you… afterall, what is visiting family, if not a celebration! It’s been more than a year since I’ve seen any family on my side (where does the time go?!)… the last time was when we cooked Maldives. Since one treat doesn’t feel like nearly enough to represent an entire country, I thought I’d flash back to an old favorite from an earlier Global Table. As I mentioned on Tuesday, the Taiwanese love Sushi, which we made when we cooked Japan. I thought we’d all benefit from a reminder on how to make the rice and the rolls. Especially with temperatures already hitting the nineties, there’s nothing better than cool meals. All recipes and the meal review will be available throughout the week. Veggie Sushi with Sushi Rice [Recipe] Learn how to make a beautiful roll at home (perfect for a small, interactive dinner party) AND see pictures of Ava from a couple of years ago (awww) when …

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Menu: Syria

“If your friend is honey, don’t lick him all.” Syrian Proverb If I’m going to be honest, I’d have to say I’m not exactly sure what this proverb means (or, more to the point, I’m not sure I should be visualizing my friends as honey bears). My theory: the proverb is not literal (so few are), but it does teach that good things should not be taken advantage of. Lest we lick them all up. But what a vivid picture the Syrians paint to teach this message. The food is just as vivid. There are bright punches of garlic (an entire head in our lentil recipe), an entire bunch of cilantro, and as many sour cherries as a girl can stand. So let’s get vivid. All recipes and the meal review will be posted throughout the week. Syrian Lentils [Recipe] An addicting (and vegan) blend of lentils, swiss chard, and entire head of garlic. Dont’ forget the lemon juice, pomegranate syrup and cilantro. A big punch of flavor for very little effort. Lamb kebabs with Sour …

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Menu: Switzerland

“Who doesn’t honor the Rappen isn’t worth the Franken” Swiss Proverb I’m not one to pass up a penny on the ground. If I were in Switzerland, I suppose I’d pick up a Rappen with the same thrifty care as any penny on our soil (Rappen are like Swiss Pennies). Apparently, I’m not alone. Enough Swiss people feel the same way, that they came up with the proverb at the top of this post: “Who doesn’t honor the Rappen isn’t worth the Franken” (100 Rappen make up a Franken). But this proverb isn’t really about money. This is about the seemingly unimportant details of our lives that we overlook in the hustle and bustle of day to day living. But these little details ARE important. So much so, that the Swiss tell us, if we don’t take the time to care for the small things in life, we aren’t worth the big. So what ‘Rappen’ have you been ignoring lately? Is it time to pick it up and give it some attention? And while we’re …

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Menu: Sweden

“Att våga är att tappa fotfästet en stund, att inte våga är att förlora sig själv.” “To dare is to lose your foothold for a moment, to not dare is to lose yourself.” (Strom, 1981)* Oh, this week. This beautiful week of Swedish cooking. As with all the “big hitter” countries, I entered this week with trepidation. It wasn’t because of the entree. I knew I’d make Swedish meatballs from the moment I began this Adventure. No, the main reason I was a bundle of nerves had everything to do with a cake. A cake! I really wanted to make a Swedish Princess Cake, but I feared I’d screw it up. I asked you all on our Facebook Page, and so many of you voted that you wanted to see the real deal.  Thank you for motivating me to go for it… for encouraging me to dare. The recipes and meal review will be posted throughout the week. Swedish Meatballs [Recipe] Beautiful, tiny meatballs made with pork and beef, seasoned with a grated onion, cream, and …

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