Posts Tagged With: Arabian

Xawaash Spice Mix

Somali Appetizer



1½ inches cinnamon stick
3 cardamom pods
1 teaspoon cloves
4½ tablespoons coriander seeds
4½ tablespoons cumin seeds
1½ tablespoons peppercorns
3½ teaspoons turmeric

Makes ¾ cup. Takes 25 minutes


Put cinnamon stick in plastic bag. Hit cinnamon with something hard. Put cinnamon pieces, cardamom pods, cloves, coriander seeds, cumin seeds in pan. Toast at medium heat for 3 minutes or until these ingredients become aromatic. Do not burn. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.

Add toasted ingredients to spice grinder. Grind until you get a completely fine powder.. Add powder and turmeric to small mixing bowl. Mix with whisk or fork until well blended. Store in airtight jar. Should keep for 4 months.


1) In the 11th century an architect named Diotisalvi made plans for a tower in Pisa. Workers built his tower lying flat on the ground. It simply remained to put the tower upright. But Diotisalvi went home for lunch, suffered an attack of amnesia, and never came back. So the workers tried raising the tower with a catapult, a trebuchet, with their arms, and blowing underneath it. Nothing worked. Then they hooked up 1,000 horses with ropes and lifted the tower up. Hooray! But oh no, the workers let the horses go too far forward. The tower listed at a four-degree angle!

3) “It’s mighty hard to see if a tower hundreds of feet tall is at a 90-degree angle,” said the foreman. A surprisingly erudite peasant said, “He needed to compare the angle of the real tower with that of a miniature, 90-degree wax tower. It’s easy to see if a small wax tower is at 90-degrees.” After that, architects would check to see if he “has a wax tower.” This shortened to “has a wax.”

3) Pisan anagramists celebrated this discovery by naming the new Arabian spice, Xawaash. Now you know.


– 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

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

Pepper Jack Meatloaf Recipe

American Entree



1/2 white onion
1/2 red onion
3 garlic cloves
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon parsley
1 green bell pepper
1 green chile
1 14.5 can diced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon tarragon
2 teaspoons fresh cilantro
1 cup grated pepper jack cheese
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mince red onion, white onion, and garlic. Add this to olive oil and sauté on medium heat until soft or about 6 minutes.

Dice bell pepper and green chile. Combine red onion, white onion, garlic, ground beef, eggs, bell pepper, green chile, diced tomatoes, coriander, cumin, tarragon, cilantro, pepper jack cheese, and bread crumbs. You really need to use your hands to do a good job here.

(Better yet, get your nine-year old to mix this up. He’ll welcome the opportunity to be helpful while getting his hands messy. Take advantage of this willingness before he becomes a teenager.)

OR…dice and mince all the above ingredients and put them all into the oil to sauté at once. This will save six minutes.

(Saving six minutes is particularly useful if there is an accidental nuclear countdown near your home, you’re the only one with the key to abort the launch with the resulting global nuclear war, and you really don’t have the extra six minutes needed to perform this extra culinary step, eat this meal, and get to the missile silo in time.)

Spray 8″-by-8″ baking dish with no-stick cooking spray. Transfer the meat mix to this dish. Smooth the meat until it is a flat as the Kansan prairie. Bake for about 1 hour at 350 degrees. Let cool for 5 – 10 minutes.


1) According to The Tales of the Arabian Nights, coriander is an aphrodisiac.

2) We should all absorb the lessons of great literature.

3) Coriander is also mentioned in the Bible. The Bible does not mention any non-culinary benefits from Tarragon.

4) Indeed, The Good Book commands, “Do not commit adultery.”

5) Sometime in the 1600s, two English publishers came out with a Bible with the exciting command, “Thou Shall Commit Adultery.”

6) The King of England fearing for the morals of his people, outlawed this version of the Bible, and heavily fined the publishers.

7) Editing and correct spicing are musts.

– 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

Categories: cuisine, food, humor, international, recipes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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