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Turkish Stuffed Apricots – Sweet Fairy Food

These golden morsels are inspired by a place where giant fairy chimneys rise above yellow brick roads, leading travelers past a network of underground cities. It sounds like fantasy. But this surreal scene lives – as real as you and me – in Cappadocia, Turkey. What are Fairy Chimneys? The fairy chimneys of Turkey (Peri Bajası) are geological remnants created by volcanic debris. These colossal outcrops can be as tall as the Christ the Redeemer statue in Brazil and almost as tall as the Statue of Liberty on the eastern US coastline. But unlike those human made structures, fairy chimneys were sculpted over millions of years by rain and wind, in the end weathering the elements better than the dinosaurs. This not to say humans never set chisel to chimney; over the last millennia humans carved into the fairy chimneys to create secure homes and places to worship. These weren’t basic dugouts – many of the cave dwellings are connected with a network of tunnels and vent shafts, and decorated with mosaic floors and frescoes. The underground …

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Argentine Beef Stew in a Pumpkin | Carbonada en Zapallo

In 2011 a young Argentine man went viral in a 6-second video when he laughed about the cost of a burger at a soccer stadium. His exact words were: Con quince peso me hago alto guiso.pum For 15 pesos I could make quite the stew. To put this young man’s remarks in perspective, 15 Argentine pesos is just under $2 USD. It seems as though, relatively speaking, overpriced stadium food is a shared phenomenon – as common as rainy days and sunny dispositions. What is remarkable – and what made the young man’s comment go viral – is the assumption that good, homemade stew can be made for the cost of an overpriced burger. I looked into his logic: here in the USA an overpriced stadium burger in Silicon Valley goes for $12. Surely, I could make a soup for less than $12, even shopping at costly American grocery stores. Testing the theory… Curious (and inspired), I began looking into Argentine stews – sending me down a delicious rabbit hole of beef and root veggie based bowls. I finally emerged …

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Coronation Chicken Finger Sandwiches

Let’s be real. Any chance I get to play dress up with my daughter, I take. Like last week, when we wore fancy hats and had a British tea party, complete with coronation chicken and coronation egg salad sandwiches.  Coronation chicken was invented in 1952, for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth. She was twenty-five years old. Her coronation was the first one to ever be televised, and she dressed for the occasion. Her amazing gown was embroidered with symbols of the commonwealth, including food, flowers, and more. Elizabeth’s coronation gown was commissioned from Norman Hartnell and embroidered on her instructions with the floral emblems of the Commonwealth countries: English Tudor rose; Scots thistle; Welsh leek; Irish shamrock; Australian wattle; Canadian maple leaf; New Zealand silver fern; South African protea; lotus flowers for India and Ceylon; and Pakistan’s wheat, cotton, and jute. (Wikipedia) Fact: no tea party is complete, if the queen isn’t in attendance. If not in person, then at least in spirit. The royal wave adds just the right flair. Even when served as dainty “finger” sandwiches, coronation chicken salad is big, bold, and curried. You’ll find it worthy of any …

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Lamb Plov with Dried Apricots & Raisins

I’m an awkward girl; I’m not up on fashion trends, my slang is two decades passe, and I’d rather drink wine at home than be surrounded by 100 people I don’t know. Dinner parties can really put me to the test, especially when I’m the hostess. I want everyone to have a good time, but I’m never entirely sure how to bring everyone together. That’s where Tajikistan can help. You know that moment, right as everyone sits down to eat? I refer to it as the calm before the storm. It’s a little bit awkward; there’s a pause while everyone gauges the mood of the room. What follows this quiet determines the success of every dinner party. In Tajikistan, where there’s a crowd, there’s Plov. Pulling up to a giant communal platter of rice brings a natural closeness.  By forcing yourself to dip hands into a communal platter breaks down any barriers and is a natural conversation starter. If your guests are unfamiliar with communal eating, the best thing to do is to give them …

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Iced Fruit Drink | Kompot

Makes 3-4 liters Many eastern European countries enjoy Kompot all year round. This sweet, chilled drink is refreshing on a hot summer’s day and, in the winter, Bulgarian children enjoy kompot as part of the Christmas celebration. Feel free to use your favorite fruit to make this recipe your own. Mint could even be added for fresh flavor. When serving, be sure to give everyone a few bits of fruit at the bottom of their glass! Ingredients: 10 cups water 1 cup sugar 6 oz prunes 4 oz currants (about 3/4 cup) 3 oz dried apricots 4-8 cups ice 1. Add all ingredients, except ice, to  a large pot. First the prunes – not just for old ladies, you know! I keep prunes in my fridge door for snacking on. I can only get Keith to eat them if I call them dried plums. Go figure. Next, the dried apricots. This particular brand is organic. I’ve never seen such dark, sultry apricots before – they look like fireplace embers, right before they burn out. Then, …

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Apricot Fruit Leather | Quamar-el-Deen

Makes about 8 strips Feel free to play around with this recipe to make flavors and combinations that you like. Be sure to check out the tips in Technique Thursday. Time may vary on when this is done, depending on your oven. Please check multiple times so as not to overcook this! Ingredients: 12 ounces dried apricots, quartered 1 cup water 2 Tbsp honey 4 cardamom pods Method: 1. In a small pot, simmer dried apricots with water, honey, and cardamom pods. Simmer about 20 minutes. 2. Carefully remove cardamom pods. Using an immersion blender, puree mixture. The mixture should be a bit thicker than applesauce. 3. Line a baking sheet with silpat (or microwave safe saran wrap). Pour apricot mixture over silpat about 3/8″ thick. Spread evenly. 4. Place baking sheet in a warm oven for 6-8 hours, or until apricot leather is just tacky to the touch. Store, covered in a cool, dry place, refrigerate or freeze.   Votes: 0 Rating: 0 You: Rate this recipe! Print Recipe Feel free to play around …

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Bil Zbib (Sweet Couscous)

Serves: 4 Bil Zbib is eaten for breakfast or dessert in North Africa.  Serve this sweet couscous warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Ingredients: 1/4 cup golden raisins 4 dried apricots, diced 2 prunes, diced 1 1/2 cups water 1 1/8 cup dried couscous 2 tablespoons melted butter 2 tablespoons sugar 1 tsp cinnamon 1/8 cup powdered sugar Method: 1.  In a small pot combine the raisins, apricot, prunes, and water. Heat until boiling. Add couscous, cover, and turn off heat. Let sit 5 minutes. 2.   Add butter, cinnamon and granulated sugar. Gently fluff the couscous; pile in a mound on a small shallow platter. Dust with powdered sugar. 3. Serve warm or cool. Votes: 0 Rating: 0 You: Rate this recipe! Print Recipe Bil Zbib is eaten for breakfast or dessert in North Africa. Serve this sweet couscous warm in the winter and cool in the summer.Bil Zbib (Sweet Couscous) CourseSweets LifestylePotluck Friendly, Vegetarian Food TypeFruit, Random Carbs & Grains Servings Prep Time 4people 5minutes Cook Time Passive Time 5minutes 5minutes Servings Prep Time 4people 5minutes Cook Time Passive Time 5minutes 5minutes …

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