Oct
05
2010
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Why is Egypt such a good resource for vegan and vegetarian recipes?

egyptian vegetarian coptic churchFor centuries after the closing of the last Pagan Egyptian temple and the coming of Islam, Greco-Roman Egypt was absorbed as part of the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire and was Eastern Orthodox (Coptic Orthodox) Christian.  All branches of early Christianity, Eastern and Western developed a system of ‘fasting’ on certain days of the week and [more...]

Sep
30
2010
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how do you make cardamom pudding?

making cardemom puddingHere is a fine dessert from Central Asia, mainly Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, and parts of India where it is known as Firnee, a sweet, cardamom-scented pudding that is usually reserved for holidays and special events.   And while it’s not traditional, I like to serve the pudding topped with fresh seasonal fruit such as strawberries or sliced [more...]

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Sep
28
2010
2

How do you make cardamom custard?

custardCardamon custard is a traditional dessert from North Africa to the Persian Gulf and on into South Asia.  In Saudi and Gulf recipes, rose water may be added.  Cardamom is the third most expensive spice in the world and used frequently in East Indian, Scandinavian, Arabic and Central African cuisines. It is an essential ingredient [more...]

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Mar
17
2010
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Do lingonberries have a traditional English name?

lingonberries or cowberriesOver the last few years lingonberry has become a fairly familiar English word. Thanks to a well-known Swedish furniture store putting lingonberry jam, jelly, and cordial on its shelves, and a few foody articles in lifestyle sections of the newspapers, many of us have a general idea that this small red berry is from Scandinavia, [more...]

Mar
17
2010
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How do you make Swedish bacon pancakes like Stieg Larsson's?

swedish bacon pancakeMillions of people in 32 countries have read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson. In its homeland, Sweden, enough books have been bought for more than a quarter of the population to own a copy. There's a Swedish film version called Men who Hate Women, and talk of a Hollywood movie in [more...]

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Oct
25
2009
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Is corned beef and cabbage really Irish?

Happy St. Patrick's Day - courtesy mccun934 - CC-BYIs corned beef and cabbage really Irish? Well, the short answer is that corned beef and cabbage is about as Irish as spaghetti and meatballs. The dish was actually invented in the United States in the mid 1800's, though it was developed by Irish immigrants. Since cattle were used for milk rather than meat in [more...]

Oct
24
2009
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Did the ancient Romans have a healthy Mediterranean diet?

Mushrooms for lunch! (photo by orsorama - CC-BY)The Ancient Romans were known for their highly evolved civilization, and for their inventions like the aqueduct. They were also known to love food and eating, and they often threw elaborate banquets to impress their friends with their knowledge of food and wine and to show off their wealth. That wasn't how they ate all [more...]

Jun
07
2009
3

Is a bilberry different from a blueberry, or a whortleberry, or a wimberry?

Bilberries - tiny - but a big choice of names (Photo by mwri - CC-BY)Bilberries grow wild in Europe. Blueberries look similar but bigger, and are native to North America. That’s the short answer, but the longer truth is that there are quite a few different varieties – all cousins related to one another. It’s usual to call dark blue members of the European branch of the family bilberries, [more...]

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May
27
2009
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Can you use flowers in food and drink?

Nasturtiums on colourful composed salad  (Photo by Sancho Papa - CC-BY)The first flower salad I ever saw was covered with bright nasturtiums like the visual treat in the photo. It impressed me with the idea that some garden flowers are not only edible, but look wonderful on food. You can grow them as well as the better-known herbs to add interesting colours and flavours to [more...]

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Feb
14
2009
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How do you grow strawberries?

Strawberries - courtesy *clairity* - CC-BYStrawberries are an ideal fruit for the home garden. They are easy to grow, fairly pest free, require little space and are fun. Twenty-five plants should provide enough berries for a family of four. There are many varieties available. Be sure to purchase certified, virus-free plants. They may cost a little more but will produce [more...]

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