Pickled Beets

Pickled Beets

Summer is the season for canning and preserving the fruits and vegetable abundantly available in our home gardens, or in markets.  I tried my first pickled vegetable, with my favorite vegetable, beets.  There are a lots of steps that you most follow for making this a safe procedure protecting the food that you intend to eat in a six month period.  Because I`m a newbie in canning and preserving, I read some blogs posts, from bloggers with canning experience and how to pickle vegetables.  I recommend that you read this or any other information available on the steps and procedures to canning, and if you will like to do so, please read these blogs posts here, here  and here.

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Beets ready to can in pickling liquid

This is the recipe I used, is a combination of traditional pickling seasonings and some others that I had at hand.

For two bunch of beets, or 6 really big beets, these are the ingredients you will need for the pickling liquid: Boil all these ingredients together for 10 minutes. Reserve

1/4 C of  sea salt

1  1/2 C of sugar

1 1/2 C of white vinegar

2 bay leaves

1 T tarragon

3 garlic cloves

1 T black & pink peppercorns

2 cinnamon sticks

1/2 inch fresh ginger

4 whole cloves

6 C of water

Procedure: Boiling water, or boiling bath

1. Cook the beets in abundant water until soft. Cool, peel and slice.

2. Sterilized the glass containers and the lids in hot water.

3. Fill the jars with the sliced beets, and the pickling seasoning liquid,  leaving two inches at the top, cover.

4. Put jars in the pot  *presurre  canner,  with at least 2 inches of water over the jars, cover.

5. Boil for 10 minutes, remove from stove, and ** leave in the counter for 24 hours.

 

* I do not own a pressure canner,  for this recipe I used a pressure cooker without sealing the lid. This is not recommended for canning meat, fish or poultry.  Follow the instructions from the pressure canner manufacturer for safety.

**Because one of the lids from one jar, was not tightly closed, when I remove it from the heat, I decided to put my 3 jars in the cooler, and use them in a 3 week period as recommended, “just to be in the safe side”.

Linking to:

 

Miz  Helen Country Cottage

Dragonfly Treasure

My Foray Into Food Storage

Do you know how to pickled vegetables?, or are a newbie like me?.  If you like this post,  please leave a comment, it will be really appreciate. Thanks, Fabiola Garcia

 

 

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Roasted Pork Loin with Guava Sauce

WP_20140727_008Pork Loin a very tender, easy to prepare cut of meat.  Cooking time varies as the weight of the meat, these two pieces took only, 1 hour and 15 minutes including resting time.

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Roasted for one hour at 350.F, and let is rest cover for 15 minutes

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Ingredients for the guava sauce:

1/4 c guava paste at room temperature

1 tablespoon of floor

1 cup of any sweet wine

1 cup of chicken stock

drippings and grease from the baking pan

salt & black pepper to taste

Heat the drippings and grease of the meat in a pot, add the flour and cook until is light brown, add and dissolve the guava paste by constantly moving and mixing the ingredients. When the guava is dissolve, add the chicken stock, and wine mixing all together until you get a sauce consistency.  Season to taste.  Serve over the slice pork loin. Enjoy!!.

 

 

It Only Took Me 23 Years To Make My Husband’s Favorite Childhood Dish

Otra receta interesante para hacer con cerdo. De el blog de Laurel Nguyen, My Foray Into Food Storage!!.

My Foray Into Food Storage

I love my husband, but, yes, it really took me 23 years of marriage to make my husband’s favorite childhood dish, Thịt Kho (Vietnamese Braised Pork with Eggs).

Vietnamese Braised Pork With Eggs Vietnamese Braised Pork With Eggs

Poor man!  In my defense, it is a bit intimidating to make someone’s favorite dish, particularly when it is not the cuisine you grew up eating, and you have to match your husband’s mother’s recipe.  So waiting 23 years was to my advantage.  It had been so long since he’d had it, he couldn’t truly remember what his mother’s recipe tasted like!  I made it for the first time about a month ago, and it was a hit.

Seriously, this is an issue I struggle with a bit.  I can follow a recipe just fine, but I cannot taste Vietnamese cuisine and know what it’s missing like I can with the foods I ate growing…

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Pickled Green Bananas – side dish

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Side dish with green bananas

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Grenn bananas “no gas”

Green Bananas versus “almost green bananas”

Last week I show you a sneak peek of green bananas with a promise of a post for a side dish. But what really move me to write about “green bananas”, is the huuha going around the blogosphere about the healthy characteristic of eating green bananas including the peeling, to do healthy smoothies or to eat it raw.  Let me be clear a real green banana cannot be eaten raw or in a smoothie, it can only be eaten cook by any method that you choose, boil, mash, fry. Here is a little explanation between a green banana and a greenish banana.

Green banana is a staple in the Caribbean, Asian and African cuisine. This is the green banana that you find label in a market as; !No Gas!. What this mean is that this banana was not gassed and it will ripen naturally, having a longer shelf life. This is the banana that you would cook any way, shape or form. Its hard very starchy, and not very easy to peel.  Do not get confuse with a plantain, they are from the same family, but different.

The other so-called “green banana”, is the same banana that was gassed to accelerate the natural ripen process. This is the banana that you find in the market that ranges in color from light green to yellow, completely yellow, or yellow with black spots. And because of the gas procedure, this one will have a shorter shelf life.  They are soft, sweet, easy to peel making them an ideal snack.  Most people will discard the bananas when they get to soft and with dark spots, but this is the ideal banana for doing ice cream, cakes or banana bread, because all the sugar concentration in the fruit is at top level. That`s the reason why people with diabetic, should only eat half of one banana a week. You can read more about green bananas here.

That aside let me show you a side dish made with real green bananas, and the procedure to peel and cook them. You can only use this peeling method, if you are going to cook the banana, if not you need to peel one by one by hand.

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Wash, cut the ends, and boil for 5 minutes to soft the peel

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Remove the peels

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Have another pan ready with boiling and season water to finish the cooking procedure

After they are cook, let them cool down, and cut in small pieces.  Saute  and add the following ingredients. Onions, cilantro, ham or crispy cook bacon, green olives with red peppers (alcaparrado).  Prepare a vinaigrette withe olive oil, apple cider vinegar, salt and pepper, and add to the green bananas.

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ENJOY!!

Polenta Cakes w/Chicken Salad

Mini Polenta Cakes w/Chicken Salad.  I had try this recipe multiple times, and always is a favorite of my family and friends.  Maybe is the delish combination of sweet from the dried cranberry and the salty kick from the parmesan cheese and  the polenta. Very simple and stress less when you use a chicken from the supermarket Deli.  This is an original recipe from Giada De Laurentiis with some variations.  Enjoy!!

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Polenta ready to cool with parmesan cheese on top

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Polenta Cakes

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Frying then without oil, to get a little crust and color

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Flake and Shredded Chicken

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Chicken Salad in pipping bag

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Polenta Cakes w/ Chicken Salad

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Quinoa Salad

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The Quinoa  is a seed, not a grain, but is refer as a “super grain” or “the mother of grains” . It is a staple in the South American cuisine, and comes from a  plant related to the spinach, beets, and Swiss chard.  It can be can be use as a substitute for rice or pasta.  High in unsaturated fats, protein and lower in carbohydrates, very easy to cook, and cooks in half the time of rice, and it multiply by 4 times in volume.

Ingredients:

2 cups Quinoa grain + 4 1/2 cups of chicken stock, and 2 tablespoon of olive oil

1 cups chick peas (garbanzo)

1 small green pepper small dice

1 small onion small dice

2 stalks of celery small dice

1 small carrot small dice

1/4 cup raisins

Salad dressing

Olive oil, Vinegar, lemon juice, yellow mustard, salt & pepper

How to do it:

Wash and rinse Quinoa. Moving constantly pan fry the Quinoa in a saucepan with 2 tablespoon of olive oil for about 3 minutes.  Add the chicken stock, salt and pepper and cook cover, until fluffy and the grain change the original white color.  Let it cool, and add the rest of the ingredients. Season to taste.

Ensalada de Quinoa

A pesar de que no es un grano, es una semilla, la Quinoa, es tambien llamada el “super grano” o la “madre de los granos.  Es un alimento muy importante de la cocina de Sur America y relativamente nueva en America del Norte.  Pertenece a la familia de las remolachas, espincas, y el Swiss chard.  Se puede utilizar como sustituto del arroz o la pasta.  Es alta en grasas no saturadas, proteinas y baja en carboidratos.  Es muy facil de cocinar y se cocina en menos tiempo que el arroz y su volumen es 4 veces mayor.

Ingredientes:

2 tazas de Quinoa + 4 1/2 tazas de caldo de pollo, y 2 cucharadas de aceite de oliva

1 taza de garbanzos

1 pimiento verde pequeno picadito

1 cebolla pequena picadita

2 ramitos de celery

1 zanahoria pequena picadita

1/4 taza de pasas

Aderezo:

Aceite de oliva, vinagre, mostaza, jugo de limon, sal y pimienta

Como se hace:

Lava y escurre la Quinoa.  Sofriela en sarten con el aceite de oliva por 3 minutos.  Anade el caldo de pollo, sal y pimienta y cocina tapado hasta que el grano se abra y cambie de color.  Anade el resto de los ingredientes y verifica la sason.