Posts Tagged With: anthropologists

Ecuadorian Fritata

Ecuadorian Entree

FRITATA

INGREDIENTS

1½ pounds pork loins
1 pound pork ribs
1 white onion
1 shallot or ½ red onion
2 teaspoons cumin
4 teaspoons minced garlic
½ teaspoon pepper
¾ teaspoon salt
4 cups water
1 cup orange juice
2 avocados

Serves 3. Takes 2 hours 30 minutes.

PREPARATION

Cut pork loin into 1″ cubes. Separate pork ribs. Dice white onion and shallot. Rub cumin garlic, pepper, and salt onto pork loin cubes and pork ribs. Cover and marinate in refrigerator for 1 hour 30 minutes.

While pork marinates, dice white onion and shallot. Add marinated pork, white onion, shallot, and water to large pan. Cook for 30 minutes at medium-high heat or until liquid disappears. Stir enough to prevent burning. Add orange juice. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes or until liquid disappears. Stir frequently to prevent burning and to ensure even browning of pork cubes and pork ribs.

Cut each avocado into 6 slices. Add pork to plates. Place 4 avocado slices to the side. Fritata is also often served with sides of: fried plantains, boil yucca, corn, potatoes, and banana.

TIDBITS

1) Pork cubes and avocado slices are natural enemies. The reason for this antagonism has long been lost in the mists of prehistory.

2) Culinary anthropologists, however, speculate that the demise of the dinosaurs 64 million years ago left a power vacuum on Earth. That led to an intense power struggle between pigs and avocados.

3) The Great Porcine-Avocado War ended when the pigs’ ribs decided they had no stomach for conflict and refused to fight anymore. This internal division curtailed the pigs’ desire for aggression. The war ended. And to this day, peace-keeping pork ribs have been placed between pork cubes and avocado slices on plates everywhere. Now you know.

 

Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D., and culinary historian

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

Norwegian Sour Cream Porridge (Rømmegrøt)

Norwegian Breakfast

SOUR CREAM PORRIDGE
(Rømmegrøt)

INGREDIENTS

2 cups sour cream
½ cup flour, wheat flour, or semolina (½ cup more later)
½ cup flour, wheat flour, or semolina
3½ cups warm milk
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cinnamon sugar
2 tablespoon melted butter

Serves 5. Takes 35 minutes.

* = This was part one to pin down. Outside of Scandinavia, most people would eat it for breakfast. It is mostly eaten in Norway as part of a day-long Christmas feast. It’s usually served with cured meats.

PREPARATION

Add sour cream to pot. Simmer at low-medium heat for 10 minutes. Stir frequently. Sprinkle ½ cup flour onto sour cream. Cook at medium heat for 5 minutes. Stir constantly. Use shallow spoon to skim off butter fat as it comes to the surface. Reserve butter fat. Add ½ cup flour. Stir constantly.

Slowly whisk in milk. Cook at medium heat for 10 minutes or until porridge thickens. Use whisk constantly to prevent lumps. Add salt. Stir enough to blend in salt. Add porridge to serving bowls. Ladle reserved butter fat and melted butter into bowls. Sprinkle bowls with cinnamon sugar.

TIDBITS

1) Just change the cinnamon sugar streaks in the above photo to red and you’ll see a lava flow through white rock. Culinary anthropologists believe this porridge reminds Norwegians of the days when their country was rife with active volcanoes. Indeed, culinary historians, a lively bunch if there has been one, say that constant lava flows made farming impossible. This left plundering foreign lands for precious metals and jewelry the only way to support themselves. Thus, the Vikings were born.

2) You might wonder why, until now, we’ve never heard of Norwegian volcanoes. That’s because Vikings didn’t adopt an alphabet for the entire populace, the Young Fouthrak runes, until 1100 AD. But the Norwegian volcanoes ceased erupting thirteen years earlier. And as our culinary historians are quick to point out, 1087 is the year of the last major Viking raid. Now you know. Volcanoes.

 

– 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

Cottage Pie

British Entree

COTTAGE PIE

INGREDIENTS – MASHED POTATOES

4 medium potatoes
⅔ cup milk
⅛ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon salt (½ teaspoon more later)
½ cup Cheddar cheese (¼ cup more later)

INGREDIENTS – FILLING

2 carrots*
1 garlic clove*
1 onion*
1 pound lean ground beef
2 tablespoons fresh parsley**
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary**
2 teaspoons fresh thyme**
2 tablespoons flour
1½ cups beef broth
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon tomato paste
½ tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup frozen peas*

INGREDIENT – FINAL

¼ cup Cheddar cheese

SPECIAL UTENSILS

potato masher
9″ round casserole dish
sonic obliterator (This gadget really is essential for the modern kitchen.)

Serves 6. Takes 1 hour 30 minutes..

* = There is a fierce controversy over what veggies go into a cottage pie. You are one your own on this one. Carrots and peas are the most popular. You’ll probably want a sonic obliterator on hand in case one of your guests argues with you over your vegetable choice. It’s okay to zap them with your sonic obliterator. There is indeed a legal precedent for this. (See M. Soult v M. Oudinot, 1809) Just remember, a cottage pie uses beef while a shepherd’s pie uses lamb.

** = If you don’t have fresh herbs handy, use 1 teaspoon dried herbs for 1 tablespoon fresh herbs.

PREPARATION – MASHED POTATOES

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Peel and cut potatoes into 1″ cubes. Add potatoes and enough water to cover them to large pot. Bring to boil using high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes or until potato cubes are tender. Drain water. Add milk. Mash potato cubes with potato masher. Add pepper, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ½ cup cheese. Stir with fork until well blended.

PREPARATION – FILLING

While potatoes boil and simmer, dice carrots, garlic clove, and onion. Add carrot, garlic, onion, and beef to large pan. Cook at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Briefly remove from heat. Dice parsley, rosemary, and thyme. Add parsley, rosemary, thyme, and flour to pan.

Add beef broth, ½ teaspoon salt, tomato paste, and Worcestershire sauce to mixing bowl. Mix with whisk or fork until well blended. Add contents from mixing bowl to pan. Return pan to heat. Simmer at low-medium heat for 20 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Stir frequently enough to prevent burning. Stir in peas.

PREPARATION – FINAL

Add filling to casserole dish. Smooth until level. Spread mashed potatoes evenly over filling. If you are adventurous, use fork to make swirly designs in the mashed potatoes. Sprinkle ¼ cup cheese over mashed potatoes.

Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes or until top turns golden brown. Serve to appreciative guests. Use sonic obliterator on the ungrateful ones.

TIDBITS

1) Cottage pie uses peas. Peas were likely eaten by Neanderthals 46,000 years ago.

2) Because peas help with: protein, blood-sugar management, digestion, your heart, and protects against cancer. But even so, the Neanderthals died out just 6,000 years later. Why?

3) We know that peas were eaten by modern humans, Cro Magnons 23,000 years ago. So apparently, they went 17,000 years without peas. Yet their branch of the human family tree prospered, Cro Magnon’s descendants walk among us today. I confess to being one of them.

4) Culinary anthropologists agree on the following explanation. From 40,000-to-23,000 thousand years ago, Neanderthals and Cro Magnons engaged in a life-and-death struggle. Both sides strove to gain control of the life-sustaining, wild-pea patches. Ultimately, the Cro Magnons prevailed. So, they lived. The pealess Neanderthals went extinct. Bummer.

5) The Romans ate peas. The built, by conquest, one of the greatest empires in history. The Saxons did not eat peas. The Normans did. This explains the Norman Conquest in 1066.

6) So when your parents told you to eat your peas, they knew what was at stake.

 

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

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 #3, Successful Anthropologists

The world of anthropology is a rough and tumble one. Heated discussions abound. It’s quite common to hear such charged phrases as “So’s Lucy of Olduvai’s mother” or “You look like a Neanderthal and think like a homonid” abound.

Sure, you could take up mathematics where everything can be proved or disproved. But where’s the fun in that?

Real men and women flock to anthropology where fossils are rare. Where painting on caves are rare. And don’t even get me started on the lack of cookbooks from the Cro Magnon Era. Either these early humans never learned to write or if they did, their recipes were written on media that just couldn’t survive hundred of thousands of years of exposure to the elements. We’ll just have to wait for a cookbook chiseled in stone by flint tools. In the meantime, we can only speculate what sides Cro -Magnon chefs served with their mastodon steaks.

Let’s face it, there isn’t a lot of evidence. Conjectures must be made. Some are brilliant, some are reasonable, some are demented. But who’s to say which theory is the best. Reasoned discourse only goes so far.

Eventually, you’ll have to fight for your view. You need to take up boxing. Every full professor in every major anthropology department across academia won his position by knocking out a weaker, slower hitting colleague.

It goes almost without saying that Nobel Prize winners in anthropology could turn pro in boxing.

Anthropology, it’s not for sissies.

 

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: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Steak Milanesa

Mexican Entree

STEAK MILANESA

INGREDIENTSSteakMilanesa-

2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 tablespoon butter.
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup bread crumbs
2 eggs
1 pound round steak (sliced 1/4″ to 1/2″ thick)
at least 3 tablespoons olive oil.
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 lemon

SPECIAL UTENSIL

kitchen mallet (if steaks not already tenderized. Useful for door-to-door salesmen as well.)

PREPARATION

Mince garlic. Add garlic, onion, and butter to pan and sauté on medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Remove garlic and onion. Add garlic, onion, oregano, pepper, and salt to mixing bowl. Stir with whisk until well mixed. Whisk eggs in separate bowl.

Tenderize steaks with kitchen mallet, if steaks are not already tenderized. Coat both sides of steaks in garlic/onion/spice mix. Dip steaks into whisked eggs, then into breadcrumbs, coating both sides. Add olive oil to skillet. Sautée each steak on medium heat for 1.5-to-2 minutes on each side, until breading is crispy and golden brown. Add olive oil as necessary for each steak sautéed. Place steaks on paper towels to drain Sprinkle with lemon juice. Slice lemon and put a slice with each steak. Goes well with rice.

TIDBITS

1) People have been grilling meat since the discovery of fire, about 500,000 years ago. This means cavemen could have been having lots and lots of barbecues. Anthropologists have been strangely mute on this, maybe due to the absence of prehistoric spatulas.

2) Grilling first became truly popular in the 1950s with the invention of the mass-produced barbecue cookbooks, spatulas, and barbecue sauces. We truly live in the best time ever.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

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

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