Monthly Archives: July 2021

Solomon Islander Chilli Taiyo- New Tidbits

Solomon Islander Entree

CHILLI TAIYO
(Spicy Tuna Casserole)

INGREDIENTS

½ pound thin noodles (Chinese or Italian)
2 garlic cloves
1 onion
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 12-ounce cans tuna*
4 ounces chili paste*
2 tablespoons lime juice.
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon salt
8 fresh basil leaves

* = If you are willing to order from Australia, you can buy cans of chilli taiyo instead of getting the first two ingredients. You can also substitute the chili paste with 6 very small but quite spicy hot peppers. Do you feel lucky?

Serves 4. Takes 40 minutes.

PREPARATION

Cook noodles according to instructions on package. Drain and reserve noodles. Mince garlic cloves. Dice onion. Add garlic, onion, and vegetable oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until garlic and onion soften. Add tuna and chili paste to pan. Stir with spoon until well blended. Flatten the tuna. Cook at medium heat for 15 minutes. Stir frequently enough to prevent burning. Add lime juice, pepper, and salt. Stir until blended. Cook for an additional 7 minutes or until tuna reaches your desired level of crispiness. Stir frequently enough to prevent burning.

Add noodles to tuna in pan. Simmer at low-medium heat for 3 minutes. Stir frequently enough to prevent burning. Garnish with basil leaves.

TIDBITS

1) This recipe asks for thin noodles. How does one get thin noodles? Most supermarkets in decent size towns sell them. Many of the supermarkets in my fair city, Poway, California, carry thin noodles.

2) Or you can order them online. But what if you need the thin noodles right now? What if your Solomon Islander boss and her husband are coming over tonight and you promised Chilli Taiyo?

3) There exists only one more way to get thin noodles. Simply use your carpentry planer on a thick noodle until you’ve shaved the thick noodle down to a thin one. Patience and precision are musts as rushed planing make the noodle shatter, particularly if use an electric planer. Repeat for each noodle.

 

Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: cuisine, how to use, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Favorite Serious TV Shows – Part One

These are the ones that first occurred to me. There should be many more. There is some greatness in TV land.

Alfred Hitchcock Presents
Bonanza
Borgias
Bletchley Circle
Cisco Kid
Columbo
David Letterman
Doctor Who
Edwardian Farm
Grand Tour
Gunsmoke
High Chaparral
Hill Street Blues
Kitchen Nightmares (UK version is a bit better than the US one.)
Last Week with John Oliver
Late Night with Conan O’Brien
Medici
Midsomer Murders
Monk
Myth Busters
Peter Gunn
Poirot
Rawhide
Rockford Files
Star Trek
Star Trek, Next Generation
Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
Tudor Monastery Farm
Tudors
Twilight Zone
Upstairs, Downstairs
Versailles
Victorian Farm
Vikings
Whitechapel

 

Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D., critic

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Fun Festivals – Elvis Impersonator Festival in Collingwood, Ontario

Perhaps the best Elvis impersonator festival in the world occurs in the summer at the Collingwood Elvis festival which thank goodness, is held in Collingwood, Ontario. It’s usually held the last weekend in July. Dang! That’s only two days from now. I don’t now if there will Covid restrictions. Sorry, there’s only so much the King can do.

This festival draws a variety of people . . . Oh heck, no it doesn’t. Only lovers of Elvis’ music will go. Oh, and Elvis impersonators. Expect to see lots and lots of Elvis impersonators. This is a good thing, however, if you love Elvis’s music and if you don’t love his songs, then why are you attending an Elvis festival?

And eat the food the King ate. See how many fried banana and peanut butter sandwiches you can devour during the festivities. Take a break and go to the nearby beach. With your Elvis batteries recharged, come back and see how many Elvises you can spot. Will he be wearing a leather jacket or a white jumpsuit? Will you see him by a goat? Will you see him on a boat? Will you see him in the park? Will you see him in the dark? Will you see him, oh so fair? Will you see him everywhere? Yes.

Elvis impersonators should note that applications are taken on a first come, first served basis. Also, don’t wear sequins. The judges know the King never wore sequins. So you will be marked down. Your so scored will be lowered enough that you’ll have no chance of winning the impersonation contest. You will return home, a broken man. Come to think of it, I don’t if a woman has ever competed. I imagine there’s been female Elvises, but I don’t know if they’ve competed here. If you do go to Collingwood to see the Kings, please let me know. At any rate there are four competitions: Canadian professional, Canadian nonprofessional, international nonprofessional and international professional.

The rest of us should put on our blue suede shoes and rock on at the Awesome Street Dance. Conclude your dancing with the midnight vigil for Elvis. Then get up in time for the Hunka Hunka Pancake Breakfast by the town hall. Bring your King size appetite. And Hell or high water won’t keep the true Elvis devotee from attending the Classic Automobile , Viper and Corvette Elvis Parade. Scads of impersonators will swarm in the cars and around them, swiveling their hips and singing away.

Get tickets well in advance for An Evening of Elvis Champions Past entertainers. You’ve spent a lot of money getting here, spending money on food, and souvenir. You deserve the best impersonators.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: fun festivals, things to see and do | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chakalaka

Lesotho* Entree

CHAKALAKA

INGREDIENTS

1 red or green bell pepper
2 red chiles
2 carrots
1 red onion
1 yellow onion
2 tomatoes
¼ cup vegetable oil
½ teaspoon curry powder (optional)
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt

Serves 4. Takes 30 minutes.

* = Technically, the adjective for Lesotho is Basotho. Would you have guessed that a Basotho entree was from Lesotho? I wouldn’t have.

PREPARATION

Seed and dice bell pepper and red chiles., Dice carrots, red onion, yellow onion, and tomatoes. Add carrot, red onion, yellow onion, and vegetable oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or yellow onion softens. Stir frequently. Add bell pepper, chile, tomato, curry powder, pepper, and salt. Sauté at medium heat for 10 minutes or until tomato bits lose their shape and become a stew. Stir occasionally. Goes well with corn meal cooked in water.

TIDBITS

1) As far as I can tell, there exist 23 songs containing the word chakalaka. Most of them do a variant on “chakalaka boom boom.” Culinary musicians, however, believe there are 33 varieties. 27 of them are excellent or at least passably good. The other six not so much. 33 recipes for chakalaka can be found. 27 are tasty. Six are meh. 27 amendments to the United States Constitution passed and became law. Six other amendments did not.

3) Clearly every time a chalaka recipe get written so does a chakalaka song.

4) Although it is not well known, American politicians like to write chakalaka songs and to prepare scrumptious new chalaka dishes. Everytime enough politicians get to write and cook chakalaka, they feel so happy and full of good will that they write an amendment to make life better for all Americans. In 1781, so many American lawmakers made enough such quality songs and meals that they up and wrote ten amendments, which would be become known as the Bill of Rights.

5) Sad to say, the ten recipes and songs that accompanied the first ten amendments have been lost to history. We shall have to console ourselves with the freedoms enshrined by the Bill of Rights.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: cuisine, history, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fun Festivals – Icelandic Festival in Manitoba

Embrace your inner Northern European spirit by raiding your way to the Icelandic Festival in Gimli, Manitoba. You’ll find tasty Icelandic food to eat. You can ever preorder a box of yummy Icelandic desserts, bread, and a bit of Icelandic cured lamb to take home. See the Icelandic fashion show. Visit musicians and artists who offer up Icelandic music and Icelandic crafts. People who like to run will want to participate in all sorts of races.

But really the most exciting part of the festival is the Viking Village. Walk around. See people dressed up a Viking warriors. Talk to them. Ask questions. Look at the weapons. Then go to every single Viking Combat Demonstration. These occur six times. If you don’t go to them all, I’ll be disappointed.

And oh my gosh, oh my gosh, don’t, just don’t, let your children miss the half-hour long Kiddie Shield Wall event. Children under thirteen learn how to form and work together in a shield wall. They’ll march, shout, and terrify the onlookers. How cool is that? Way, way, way, way, way cool. This is the best festival event ever.

Don’t forget the crowning of the Fjalkona, the Maid of the Mountain. The Fjalkona is held to be the female incarnation of Iceland. Heavy responsibility, you bet! This is festival is so cool. The festival runs, this year, from July 30 to August 2. That’s right around the corner. Book your travel and hotel reservations right now. I mean right now. This festival is your destiny.

 

Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: things to see and do | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Great Arctic Eats, Tromsø, Norway

Tromsø, Norway

Do you love to eat in a town with just the right amount of people, that is 68,000? Do you crave an bustling town with an invigorating night life? Do you absolutely need art, history, and fantastic scenery? Do you want to take classes at the world’s northernmost university? Are you okay with learning Norwegian to get free tuition? Do you want it all by being above the Arctic, yet experiencing a sub-Arctic climate? Is it essential that you dine on tasty food? Then, oh my gosh, Tromsø, Norway, is the place for you.
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Let’s visit Tromsø’s five best restaurants as TripAdvisor(tm).
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The must-go-to restaurant is Restaurant Smak. I want to go there. I want to go there. If you dine at Smak, please enjoy a meal for me and do let me know how you liked it. True, it’s a bit pricy, but I have never, no not ever, seen an Arctic restaurant with more glowing reviews than this establishment. People rave about the attentive servers and the high quality of their fresh food. The restaurant ensures the freshness of their ingredients by buying only food from the neighboring farms. It’s not surprising then, that Restaurant Smak gets a perfect 5.0 rating. Do try their Jerusalem artichoke soup, white asparagus, wild lamb, cod cheek and hot dogs. And for dessert, try their dill and caramel sorbet. Meals run from three-to-five courses and can take two hours, but the time will fly because everything at Restaurant Smak is good as it can be. I really want to go here.
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Winning the silver medal on our restaurant tour is Raketten. It is a hot-dog kiosk, but what a hot-dog kiosk! This small building serves such good food and has been such a mainstay to the community over the decades that the powers that be designated it an Important Cultural Monument. Can your local fast-food joint boast of a distinction like that? No, I didn’t think so. Keep a sharp lookout on Raketten as the outside line of dedicated hot-dog lovers can be over a hour. Sit by the nice, cozy fire and enjoy some gløgg, a hot punch made with red wine, brandy, sherry, almonds, raisins, and orange peels. What more do you need?  Or perhaps you prefer a delicious hot chocolate topped with marshmallows? Be sure to try their reindeer sausage. Is this a great town or what?
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Third place on our dining tour is Svermeri Kafe Og Redesign. The atmosphere is cozy and the staff is friendly and attentive. It serves delicious fish cakes and desserts. They really, really make fantastic soup and cakes. The number of reviews praising their soups and cakes is legion. I think I’d order their wild-blueberry pie. They even make gluten-friendly cakes. Don’t miss this place.
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We now visit Art Cafe. This is an all around good restaurant with pleasant lunches and fine dining at night. Art Cafe possesses a super cozy atmosphere and a friendly staff. The restaurant is decorated with authentic artistic decor which you may purchase. The jazz bar sounds nice as do the reasonable prices. Many tantalizing dishes abound including: reindeer stew, king crab soup, shrimp, mussels, Norwegian cheese, beef bourguignon, and Greek salad.
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We finish our culinary adventure at Mathallen. It’s named after Allen, the local high-school math teacher. No, not really. It does serve great Scandanavian and European dishes. Mathallen’s uses fresh ingredients from local sources. The waitstaff is pleasant and knowledge. All the food is brilliantly presented. Mathallen gives good value. Restaurant goers praise the seafood especially the herring, cod, salmon, and whale. Fans of meat really should go for their deer and reindeer steaks. And who could resist trying their ice cream made from sour cream and hazel/plum sauce? Don’t forget their satisfying local beer.
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Tromsø’s restaurants
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By far, the best two way to reach Tromsø are by plane and by car. (Although motoring can get exciting when the fog rolls in.) You could visit the town by cruise ship as well. However, you’d have to be extremely patient if you wish to get to there by train. The Norwegian government has been debating extending the rail network to Tromsø for decades. You’d do much better riding reindeer and even then who knows if they know the way?
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Go on the Fjord Excursion by RIB. For how could you possibly travel all the way to northern Norway and not visit the nation’s fjords up close. The guides on the speed boats are quite knowledgeable and the fjords spectacular. If lucky, you can see orcas, sea eagles, reindeer, and seals come near your boat. Well, maybe not the reindeer, they tend to stay on land. Dress warm, it can get cold and rainy out there. You might even experience a blizzard. Astoundingly, many  people really want to experience a blizzard on the sea. At any rate, hot chocolate and cinnamon buns await you at the end trip. Mmm.
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Be sure to go on Night Reindeer Sledding with Camp Dinner and Chance of Northern Lights. Well, the name tells you what to expect, doesn’t it? So don’t think the tour guides can guarantee you the Aurora Borealis. Ahem. The trip is organized even to the point of having lasso tossing and other activities before the tour even starts. Or maybe just drink hot chocolate they serve. Until you go to where it’s really cold, you won’t appreciate how wonderful hot chocolate can be. But this excursion really is tailor made for reindeer lovers. Reindeer pull your sled! Your feed the reindeer! The reindeer feed you! Wow! Wow! Sure, the reindeer feed you from a limited menu, but they feed you! Okay, enough exclamation points. Dinner is a traditional reindeer stew served at major celebrations. Can you get that amazing dish at your local drive through? No, I didn’t think so. And learn about Swami history and culture from the pleasant Swami guides. I want to go on this one.
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People with not enough time to get out of town should make their way to the Polar Museum. There might be no better place in the world to learn about legendary polar leaders and expeditions. Learn about fishing and hunting expeditions to even farther north Svalbard. (Warning to animal right activists, this really isn’t a place you’d want to visit.) Others will want to see a trapper’s hut and the objects needed for Arctic survival. You can even learn the truth about polar bears wandering the streets of Tromsø. Egad, that sounds ominous. Probably isn’t though. Probably. At any rate, I want to head out to Tromsø even more
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Tourists with not much time, especially seal lovers, will want to visit Polaria. It’s a cozy place with the emphasis. See seals frolic up close. Try to get there for the seal feedings. Spend the money and feed the seals yourself. What fun! Polaria fills their aquariums with fishes and plants you won’t find anywhere else.
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As always, “Good eating. Good traveling.”

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Arctic eats, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lebanese Chicken Kebabs

Lebanese Entree

CHICKEN KEBABS

INGREDIENTS

3 boneless chicken breasts
7 garlic cloves
1 green bell pepper
1 small onion
¼ cup lemon juice
6 tablespoon Greek or plain yogurt
3 tablespoons olive oil
¾ teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon white pepper or pepper
2 tablespoons red vinegar or apple cider vinegar
¾ teaspoon tomato paste
6 pita loaves

SPECIAL UTENSILS

outdoor grill
6 skewers (If wooden, soak in water for 20 minutes.)

Serves 6. Takes 3 hours.

PREPARATION

Cut chicken into 1″ cubes. Crush garlic cloves. Seed and chop green bell pepper into 1″ squares. Chop onion into 1″ squares. Add all ingredients to large mixing bowl. Mix with hands until chicken cubes are well coated. Cover and let marinate in refrigerator for 2 hours.

Thread chicken cubes, bell pepper squares, and onion squares onto skewers. Turn heat on grill to medium. Add skewers to grill. Heat all sides for 3 minutes each. Place skewers in large pot and cover. Let rest for 10 minutes. (This step helps keep the chicken cubes moist.) Serve on skewers or if using pita loaves, remove all ingredients from skewers and place on pita loaves.

TIDBITS

1) Lebanese chickens do extraordinary things. Amal Rooster designed the tunnel connecting Britain with France. Zaina Hen organized the first mobile, military hospital. Haasim adapted golf clubs for use with chickens. Barbara Chicken or “Babs” played keno. She was so brilliant at it, that she bankrupted the casino at Monte Carlo.. A Lebanese chef created this dish, Chicken Kebab, in honor of her. However, human beings being a foul lot, they always steal the credit from the worthy chickens.

 

Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: cuisine, history, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dear Readers

Thank you for reading my blogs. I’m grateful.

 

 

 

 

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

 

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Motivational Poster #11, Be an Editor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This really happened. An early edition of the King James Bible urged the faithful to commit adultery. King James was not amused and fined the publishers rather heavily. If only they had hired an editor. Be an editor! Keep the world moral.

 

Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: motivational | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Madagascan Rice Bowl

Madagascan Entree

RICE BOWL

INGREDIENTS

1 cup rice
3 garlic cloves
1 green onion
1 small yellow onion
1 carrot
1 zucchini
¾ pound beef steak or round
⅓ pound peel, deveined shrimp
2 tablespoons butter
4 eggs
¼ cup olive oil
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1½ tablespoons oyster sauce, fish sauce, hoisin sauce, or Worcestershire sauce

Note: This is a very chef friendly dish. Really any combination of chicken, beef, pork, or shrimp may be used as well as any veggie you have in your pantry or crisper.

Serves 4. Takes 1 hour.

PREPARATION

Cook rice according to instructions on package. While rice cooks, dice garlic cloves, green onion, and yellow onion. Slice carrot into thin rounds. Julienne zucchini; that is, cut it into thin sticks. Cut beef into short, thin strips. Cut shrimp in to ½” cubes.

While rice cooks, add butter and eggs to large pan. Fry eggs at medium heat until done to your liking. Remove from heat. Add olive oil and beef strips to large pot. Sauté strips for 5 minutes at medium-high heat. Stir enough to prevent burning. Add carrot, garlic, green onion, yellow onion, zucchini. pepper, and salt. Reduce heat to medium and sauté for 5 minutes or until yellow onion softens. Stir frequently. Add shrimp, soy sauce and oyster sauce and sauté for 3 minutes or until shrimp turns pink or orange. Stir occasionally.

Place 1 fried egg in each bowl. Add equal amounts of veggie/beef/shrimp mixture to each bowl. Top each bowl with equal amounts of rice. Place plate on top of each bowl. Gently turn each bowl and plate over. Gently lift bowls. Veggie/beef/shrimp/rice mixtures should keep the shape of the bowls.

TIDBITS

1) As of press time, Rice Bowl was in Witness Protection and could not give interviews.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: cuisine, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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