Tag Archives: Scotland

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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Global Recipes for Easter Eggs

Whether you have hard-boiled Easter eggs to use up or not, spring is the perfect time to look at how different cultures around the world enjoy hard-boiled eggs.

In Ethiopia, hard-boiled eggs are a traditional part of the meal. Dishes such as doro wat call for a hard-boiled egg for each person. Most Ethiopians are live in rural areas and can raise their own chickens and collect their own eggs. In fact, livestock such as chickens are an important investment for most Ethiopian families.

Many Swedish children love eating a sandwich that combines hard-boiled eggs with cod roe caviar (kalles kaviar) for a salty and delicious snack. Other variations include shrimp and creme fraiche. KidCulture has already answered the question, “Can you feed a kid caviar?” in this blog post.

Scotch eggs are hard-boiled eggs, wrapped in sausage, rolled in bread crumbs and then deep-fried. I’m not sure how likely your children are to eat it so try it out on some willing grown-ups first! Here’s a Scotch egg recipe from Epicurious.com and a YouTube video that shows you how to do it.

In the Philippines, egg sarciado is a boiled egg recipe in a tomato and onion sauce. Here’s an egg sarciado recipe you can try.

If you love Filipino food, check out Ang Sarap, a blog with recipes from the Philippines and other parts of the world.

And for more amazing egg ideas ranging from omelets to soft-cooked eggs and more, check out Around the World in 80 Eggs from Smithsonian magazine.

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Countdown to a New Year

Just as one holiday ends, another begins. Before the wrapping paper has been recycled (but long after the first toy has been broken), families around the world are gearing up to celebrate one of the most popular holidays – welcoming the New Year.

For the next week, KidCulture will look at how the new year is ushered in around the world and how you can adopt – or adapt – new practices for your family.

Although different cultures and religions celebrate the New Year on different days, the idea of celebrating the new year is universal.

In many cultures, the old year (2010 for us) is considered evil and has to be banished in order to properly set the stage for a happy and successful new year (2011).

One practice that most moms and dads would probably love to adopt is the idea of cleaning the house before the end of the year to present a clean, organized, and ready-for-anything mentality.

Scotland is one of the many cultures that encourage cleaning house in preparation for the new year.

In addition, fragrant branches are burned inside the house to erase old odors and leave a sweet smell.

If you can convince your children to celebrate the new year the Scottish way, hand them a dustpan and broom and a bottle of Febreze and see if they get into the spirit of things! Extra points if you teach them the lyrics to “Auld Lang Syne” and you sing while cleaning.

Auld Lang Syne

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne!

For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne.
We’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.

 

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Cookies 17: Burrebrede

burrebredeBurrebrede, or Scottish shortbread, is a delicious treat that was supposedly favored by England’s Queen Elizabeth I.

This burrebrede recipe is from AllRecipes.com.

Burrebrede (Scottish Shortbread)

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup superfine sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup butter, softened

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, allspice and salt. Divide into two equal parts, and set one aside. Add the flour and butter to the other half, and stir until blended. It should be slightly grainy.
  3. Press the dough evenly into an 8 inch square pan. Cut into 1×2 inch pieces using a knife, and prick with the tines of a fork. This will keep the shortbread from warping while baking. Sprinkle the reserved sugar and spice liberally over the top, brushing into all of the cuts and holes.
  4. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until firm and golden at the edges. Do not brown. Cool completely in the pan, and break into pieces along the lines to serve.

 

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Are You Safe From April Fool’s Day Pranks?

images-1Here’s a short list of places NOT to go if you’re averse to tomfoolery:

England

Scotland

United States

France

Mexico

Portugal

India

However, having lived in West Africa, I can tell you that former colonies of any of these countries are extremely likely to maintain the practice of April Fool’s jokes.  In Burkina Faso, it was known as the “poisson d’avril,” which means “April fish.”  This turn of phrase stems from the young and naïve fish spring fish who were easily caught on April 1.  

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