Tag Archives: Cooking Clarified

Holiday Cookie Countdown: Burrebrede

One of my new favorite Christmas cookies is Scottish Burrebrede. It’s got a delicious flavor and flaky texture that is unlike many of the cookies you’re likely to encounter this holiday season – all the more reason to bake up a batch!

The Scottish today celebrate Christmas in much the same way as others do around the world. They decorate their homes with Christmas trees and many people like to use Scottish tartan ribbons as a garland on their tree.

On Christmas Day at 3 o’clock, many Scots gather to watch Queen Elizabeth II make her annual Christmas address.

Since the days are so short in Scotland at this time of year – the sun does not rise until nearly 8:30 a.m. and sets at 4:30 p.m. – Christmas  is a great way to break the gloom of winter.

You can break the gloom of winter wherever you are by baking up a batch of burrebrede from Cooking Clarified. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.

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Holiday Cookie Countdown: Russian Tea Cakes

Russian tea cakes are a delicious cookie that are commonly eaten at wedding and Christmas celebrations.

Many Russians celebrate Christmas on New Year’s Eve when Grandfather Frost arrives with his daughter, the Snow Maiden, to listen to children sing songs and recite poems before giving them presents and bags of candy.

Russian families decorate their homes with Christmas trees and pine leaves.

Orthodox Russians celebrate Christmas in early January. On Christmas Eve, they do not eat or drink until the first stars appear in the sky. Once the star is sighted – a reminder of the star that led the Magi to the Baby Jesus – the family eats a meatless dinner together, called the “Holy Supper”. The meal typically includes 12 dishes, which represent the 12 Apostles.

After dinner, the family does not wash the dishes right away (good idea!). Instead, they open presents and prepare to go to mass, which lasts several hours. Families usually do not return home until 2 or 3 in the morning.

It’s interesting to note that Russians had to adapt their religious traditions to New Year’s Eve after the Russian revolution in 1917 when religion was outlawed. So they moved their Christmas traditions to New Year’s Eve and re-characterized many of their customs in order to maintain their faith.

But since 1992, Russians have been free to celebrate as they wish. So, like them, you can enjoy some Russian tea cakes whenever you would like. Try this fantastic recipe from Cooking Clarified.

 

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Holiday Cookie Countdown: Besitos de Coco

Besitos de coco, also known as “coconut kisses,” are a traditional Puerto Rican dessert and are commonly served at Christmas (Navidad).

Christmas in Puerto Rico is a family-centric holiday. Some celebrations begin in early December and do not end until the Dia de los Reyes, the Feast of the Three Kings, or three wise men.

Singing also plays an important role in traditional Puerto Rican Christmas celebrations. A group of friends will gather, along with their musical instruments, and surprise another friend at home. They will sing songs and celebrate for several hours.

In addition, many families celebrate by roasting a whole pig on a spit. The pig is placed on the spit as early as four o’clock in the morning and two people have to watch it cook for hours to ensure that it does not burn. In the meantime, others prepare side dishes while children play games. Guests may bring desserts such as besitos de coco or flan.

Make some besitos de coco with your family using this recipe from Cooking Clarified and enjoy!

 

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Holiday Cookie Countdown: Anzac Biscuits

Anzac Biscuits It is so rare that the military inspires excellent food – but that’s exactly what happened with Australia and New Zealand’s Anzac biscuits. These rolled oat cookies were developed during World War I when mothers, wives, sisters, and friends wanted to send a delicious treat to their men in the military.

Even its name – Anzac – comes from the Australia New Zealand Army Corps.

Because of this close association, the Australian government closely monitors the use of name and the cookies are often manufactured and sold as a fundraiser for veterans.

Fortunately, the cookies are delicious and travel well so bake up a batch for your far-flung friends and relatives!

Get the recipe from Cooking Clarified here. We’ll be posting more holiday cookies from around the world as we count down to Hannukah and Christmas.

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New E-Book Blends Food & Culture

The Best International Flavors You're NOT Grilling With!I am so happy to announce that our e-book, The BEST International Flavors You’re NOT Grilling With! is now available from Amazon.com.

This is the first e-book my co-author, Chef Danielle Turner of www.CookingClarified.com, and I have put together. We share a love of other cultures (and food) and as mothers we want to encourage our children to be curious about people and places around the world.

In this grilling e-book, we’re expanding our outreach to parents, particularly fathers who are the stereotypical “grill masters” in their families. By encouraging dads to experiment with new foods and learn about new cultures, we hope that both mom and dad (and grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc.) will model the behavior we hope children will adopt.

For more information about the e-book, check out KidCulture’s Grilling page or visit Chef Danielle’s website, CookingClarified.

If you’re convinced that grilling with global influences is something your family would enjoy, we hope you’ll buy our book and support our efforts.

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Filed under Africa, Asia, Caribbean, Eat, Europe, Latin America, Learn, Middle East, Read

The Donut/Doughnut Project

DonutsRaise your hand if you need a pick-me-up. If you’re still recovering from:

  • A seemingly endless winter;
  • Stressful work load;
  • Agonizing semester of school;
  • Bad breakup;
  • Good breakup
  • Assorted life changes;
  • Parenting.

Take your pick of excuses to luxuriate in a 20 mouth-watering, decadent, and global donut/doughnut recipes presented to you in a special partnership between KidCulture and CookingClarified.com.

As moms, writers, and donut lovers, this is our April gift to you. Over the course of the Donut Project, I will be providing the global context for these fabulous donuts from around the world and Chef Danielle of Cooking Clarified will be testing and photographing the donuts.

This is a truly  heroic effort on Chef Danielle’s part – but she assures me it will be worth the sacrifice that she and her family will be making!

We’re eager to hear your comments, entertain your suggestions for other donuts you love from across the globe, and hear about your donut adventures.

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French Onion Soup

Although well-known in the United States (it even appears on the TGI Friday’s menu), French Onion Soup is actually an ancient soup that originated in France and is typically affiliated with the poor because it was cheap and simple soup to make.

This French Onion Soup recipe comes from Chef Danielle at CookingClarified.com.

Of all the soup’s we’ve covered so far, this is likely the only one my mother will make! French Onion Soup is one of her favorites. Bon appetite, maman!

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Can You Trust a Skinny Chef?

Paula Deen would say no and throw a stick of butter at you for asking, but with so many children and adults fighting obesity, high BMI’s, and the health conditions that follow, it seems irresponsible to reject healthier fare.

On www.howtoboilanegg.wordpress.com, Chef Danielle reviews Secrets of a Skinny Chef by Jennifer Iserloh. I happen to know Chef Danielle loves her butter, heavy cream, and French recipes, so if she can find something to love, it’s worth a shot.

Here’s a snippet of Chef Danielle’s review:

Jennifer even takes on popular takeout items, eliminating the fat in Just Like Takeout Sweet & Sour Chicken, which is a perfect storm of protein, vegetables and grains.

The Skinny Chef also serves up recipes for French onion soup, Mexican bean dip, nachos, sesame chicken, enchiladas, chicken marsala, and lo mein.

Read Chef Danielle’s entire review here.

If you’re interested, here’s the book and here’s the Skinny Chef’s website. Great tips and recipes here, too!

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