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Nova Scotian Hodge Podge with Tuna

Nova Scotia’s Hodge Podge, with Tuna

Nova Scotia’s Hodge Podge is a homey one-pot supper of fresh potatoes, carrots, peas and green beans. What takes it over the top? The addition of heavy cream and butter, along with a few pearl onions for mild sweetness. A gardener’s delight While there are different ways to go about making Hodge Podge, one thing is for certain: it’s best made straight from the garden, when vegetables are fresh and abundant, just as in the eastern Canadian province that lends its name to this dish. Fresh is fresh. In my research I discovered locals prepare Hodge Podge with baby potatoes just 50-60 days in the ground and the gangling carrots pulled to thin the garden bed. This is a foreign concept to someone who doesn’t grow their own vegetables, but it makes sense in verdant Nova Scotia. When a garden does well, it can produce so much food, it has to be used up throughout the growing season, not just in a final harvest. Farm life is common in the province, as are farmer’s markets – …

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Salad Niçoise

There’s nothing like a mid-winter picnic, especially if Salad Niçoise is part of the equation. The other day my daughter asked if we could eat dinner outside. It was sunny, the temperature in the mid-sixties. My answer? Most definitely. We bundled up – each in a cozy sweater – and set up our colorful spread on the scraggly winter landscape. For the Salad Niçoise, I took my inspiration from Julia Child and piled on delicately steamed French beans, hard-boiled eggs, tomatoes, and everything deliciously funky: Tuna, olives, capers and a few anchovies (for salty chew). A handful of crackers with cheese completed dinner (though a hunk of crusty bread would be nice, too). My husband flashed us all back to his “Mr Picky” days as he struggled to down one solitary anchovy. He did the work but remains unconvinced of their merits. My daughter escaped the challenge since she’s a self-proclaimed vegetarian, focusing her efforts instead on the vegetables and cheese (for protein). As for myself, I ate everything. While we enjoyed our meal, the sun sunk behind our neighbors’ rooftop (taking the warmth with …

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Green Papaya Salad | Som Tam

Whomp. Womp. Womp. Everything worth doing takes a little bit of work. And so it is with Som Tam. The mortar and pestle crushes the garlic, mashes a Thai bird chili peppers,  and wooshes the fish sauce and lime juice into the green beans and papaya. I put the bowl on the table, dotted red with tomatoes. Ava thinks the papaya is spaghetti. The pale green shreds curl around her fork. “It’s something like that…” I say, hoping she believes me. She takes a bite, then another. Soon the forks on plates are the only noise. While I adore Thai food, I’d never had green papaya salad before this week. When several readers suggested I try it on our Facebook Page, I listened. First, I tried to order it at a local restaurant called My Thai Kitchen, just to see what all the fuss was about, but it wasn’t on the menu. So, instead, I went to our local  Asian market, Nam Hai, and picked up what I needed, including some palm sugar, a green …

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Mixed Vegetable Salad with Coconut Dressing | Goedangan

Introducing Geodangan, your answer to healthy munchies. (Honestly, I’m not sure if there’s such a thing as healthy munchies. But if there were, then this is it.) This Asian-style salad that is incredibly popular in Suriname. And for good reason. Don’t be shy. Geodangan is everything spring has to offer – crisp green beans, giant cabbages, golden yolked eggs… with the addition of a coconut, lime, yogurt dressing. (The dressing could also be coconut sambal, a spicy shredded coconut condiment.) Either way, you’ll feel like your in Suriname… by way of Indonesia. And that’s definitely a good thing. Today’s recipe for Goedangan is adapted from Holidays of the World Cookbook for Students; they suggest serving the salad for a traditional Surinamese lunch, which I think sounds just lovely. Serves 6 Ingredients: For the salad: 1 small head cabbage, cored, shredded and blanched 1 lb French green beans 1/2 lb mung bean sprouts 1 hard boiled egg per person 1 cucumber, sliced shredded coconut or coconut flakes, optional For the dressing: 1/2 cup coconut milk 1/2 cup yogurt …

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Autumnal Veggies in Spiced Coconut Milk

“I would eat that” says Mr. Picky, after taking a nibble off of my wooden spoon. I take a bite off the same spoon and let my eyes flutter shut. My mouth is filled with the most comforting, savory goodness. These coconut veggies taste exactly like a delicious hug on a rainy day… or a steaming hot shower after a rough and tumble game of basketball… or that happy dream you have after finishing a really, really great book (or show) – the kind of dream that lets the world of the characters continue on in your imagination. Good stuff. There’s nothing so softly seductive as sweet potatoes, butternut squash, potato, and green beans, simmered in creamy coconut milk with a touch of ginger and garlic. This is the quintessential Papua New Guinean meal – one you’ll often see ladled over white, somewhat mushy rice. Why mushy? Well, according to Caroline Leigh who has been to Papua New Guinea, rice cooked in thin aluminum pots is always mushy. Since  almost all pots in Papua New Guinea …

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Green Bean Soup | Bouneschlupp

As a teenager in Luxembourg, I never really thought about high class cuisine. We spent a lot of time over at Quick, the aptly named fast food place. If we weren’t there, we were eating a the local pizzeria, bar, or patisserie. It’s a shame, really, because the world’s first and only female winner of the Bocuse d’Or, a highly competitive culinary competition, is from Luxembourg and has two restaurants right around the corner from where we hung out. Talk about missed opportunities. The chef’s name is Lea Linster and her impeccable dishes show that country food can be just as classy as city food. As I watched her speak about this traditional green bean soup, I knew I had to try it. With a few simple flourishes, she turns a country-bumpkin dish into something I’d be willing to serve at any dinner party. Especially because she insists on inlcuding the same special ingredient I do: lots of love. Serves 4-6 Ingredients 1 1/2 pounds fresh green beans, diced (about 5 cups) 1 onion, diced 1 …

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Smoked Ham & Green Bean | Jollof

I’m that girl who orders the same thing over and over again at restaurants. I know – not what you’d expect from someone cooking the world. But I can’t help it. I like knowing what to expect. Plus, there’s nothing worse than wasting hard-earned money on a dish that I could possibly end up hating. After all, it’s not like I can send the food back just because I don’t like it. Now, to be fair, I’m a completely different person at home. Without the burden of outrageous restaurant bills, I’m a free spirit.  I play with food. Experiment. Get all MacGyver on it. If things begin to head south, I’m quick on my feet. A dash of this and a squirt of that will usually bring the meal back into edible form. I rarely make the same thing, the same way, twice. Well, today we’re revisiting Jollof – a dish we made a few months ago with such success that I thought I’d make another popular variation for Liberia, a country that loves Jollof as much as any …

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Indonesian Salad | Gado Gado

Nope. That would be weird. No, this is peanut sauce, the perfect complement to Gado Gado. And what is Gado Gado, you ask? The coolest way to stay cool in Indonesia. Made from an assortment of tofu, tempeh, young jack fruit, cooled boiled potatoes, eggs, and green beans, Gado Gado is a dream-come-true for those of us who like to use leftovers. Of course, to keep things fresh and crunchy, most Gado Gado salads also add a blast of cabbage and sprouts. If that sounds too healthy, no worries. While I went light on the peanut sauce, I’ve read that many salads are swimming in the stuff. I got the same effect by dipping each bite until totally coated in peanut sauce. It was brilliant. What are we waiting for? Let’s hit up a floating market and make some Gado Gado. Ingredients for 2-4 2 handfuls green beans, steamed and cooled 4 small red potatoes, boiled, cooled, and quartered 4 eggs, hard-boiled, cooled, and halved 1/2 package tempeh, pan fried in oil 8 oz tofu, pan …

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Guyanese Chow Mein

Serves 4 Hello. I realize it’s summer, but let’s shut our eyes for a moment and daydream about winter. In Guyana. Are you ready for Christmas? Shall we deck the halls? (do people really do that?). Ready or not, today’s recipe is going to take you to December 25th, Guyanese-style. Read this: The kids got their little presents, got their pictures taken on my lap, and everyone ate fried rice, chow mein, and chicken curry. You know, traditional Christmas food. From Mark Hejinian’s travel blog Guyanese Mark My first reaction? I want to spend Christmas in Guyana. Immediately. It doesn’t help that it’s a zillion degrees here, but a nice cool winter day would be welcome right about now. And that menu? Yes, yes, yes. So let’s dig into what this dish is all about. While Chow Mein might sound like a stretch for the South American dinner table, Guyanese love this dish with a passion. It’s not a straight up copycat operation, however – they add plenty of unique touches, to make Chow Mein …

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Green Beans with Speck can be made ahead and heated in the oven right before serving.

Green Beans with Speck | Schinkenspeck

Serves 2-4 Speck, technically called Schinkenspeck, is a dry aged prosciutto product. Bacon or ham can be substituted if your grocer does not carry this Austrian favorite. Enjoy Green Beans with Speck with chicken, fish, or pork Ingredients: 1 lb of green beans 2 ounces schinkenspeck, minced Method: 1. Simmer green beans in a large pot of salted water until just cooked. Drain and set aside. 2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add speck and cook until the fat renders (much like bacon). 3. Add green beans and toss with speck. Serve hot.   Votes: 0 Rating: 0 You: Rate this recipe! Print Recipe Speck, technically called Schinkenspeck, is a dry aged prosciutto product. Bacon or ham can be substituted if your grocer does not carry this Austrian favorite. Enjoy Green Beans with Speck with chicken, fish, or porkGreen Beans with Speck | Schinkenspeck CourseSides & Salads Lifestyle5-ingredients or less, Potluck Friendly Food TypeCasseroles, Miss Ava’s Favorite Recipes, Vegetables Servings Prep Time 2-4 people 10minutes Cook Time 20minutes Servings Prep Time 2-4 people …

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Algerian Spiced Green Beans

Algerian Green Beans

Serves 4 Algerian green beans, called Loubia, are a nice side dish to almost any meal. Make them ahead and reheat in the oven at the last minute. Ingredients: 1 lb fresh green beans 3 Tbsp peanut oil 2 cloves garlic, crushed 1/2 tsp ground cumin 1/2 tsp paprika a hefty pinch ground cloves 3 Tbsp slivered almonds Method: 1. Steam green beans until tender, about 15 minutes (or if you like them firmer, that’s okay too). 2. In a small skillet over medium heat, combine oil, garlic, cumin, paprika, and cloves. Saute until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add slivered almonds and cook for 1 minute more. 3. In a large serving bowl toss green beans with seasoned oil. Serve hot. Votes: 3 Rating: 4.33 You: Rate this recipe! Print Recipe Algerian green beans, called Loubia, are a nice side dish to almost any meal. Make them ahead and reheat in the oven at the last minute.Algerian Green Beans CourseSides & Salads LifestyleGluten-Free, Potluck Friendly, Quick, Vegan, Vegetarian Food TypeVegetables Servings Prep Time 4people 10minutes Cook …

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