Posts Tagged With: cassia

Kenyan Coconut-Milk Plantain Recipe

Kenyan Entree

COCONUT-MILK PLANTAINS

INGREDIENTSCocoMilkPlan-

4 completely ripe plantains
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1 3/4 cups coconut milk

PREPARATION

Peel plantains. Cut plantains in round slices no thicker than 1/4″ inch. Combine all ingredients (head ‘em up, move ‘em out) into soup pot. Simmer on low heat for 30-to-40 minutes or until the plantains are tender and have absorbed all the coconut milk. Stir occasionally to ensure that all the plantain slices get covered with liquid. Serve hot. If not, serve cold.

TIDBITS

1) Cinnamon is truly a happening spice.

2) True cinnamon comes from Sri Lanka. Powdered cinnamon sold in America is usually not true cinnamon. Instead is really cassia, a similar tasting spice. Fret not, the sky is not falling. You can buy cinnamon sticks and grind your own cinnamon. Take back cinnamon! Yeah!

3) Cinnamon smells great. Indeed, God told Moses (Exodus 30: 22-33). to make holy anointing oil out of cinnamon, cassia, olive oil, myrrh, and scented cane.

4) The ancient folks scurrying around the Mediterranean and points east believed in the Cinnamon Bird. The Cinnamon Bird lived in Arabia and built its nest with cinnamon which it got from parts unknown.

5) The Arabians left heavy chunks of meat on the ground. The Cinnamon Birds would take the meat back to their nest. The weight of the meat would cause the cinnamon nests to fall to the ground. Of course, they could have accomplished the same thing by throwing bowling balls in these birds’ nest, assuming the sons of the desert had bowling balls way back then.

6) The ancient Roman, Pliny the Elder, debunked the myth of the Cinnamon Bird. Nothing got past old Pliny.

7) Economist alert! One ounce of cinnamon could get you fifteen ounces of silver in Roman times. Kinda made having cinnamon toast a special occasion.

8) During the Middle Ages, your social level was determined by the number of spices you had. Hee, hee, I’m fabulously rich! Oh wait, I’m not living in the Middle Ages. Dang it, where’s my time machine?

9) For centuries, European nations fought wars over who would control Ceylon’s, Sri Lanka back then, supplies of cinnamon. A bit like Black Friday at WalmartTM.

10) For a long time I thought Marshall Crenshaw’s song, “Cynical Girl,” was really “Cinnamon Girl.” It changed the meaning somewhat.

– 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, humor, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Spice Substitutions

SPICE SUBSTITUTIONS

Not everyone has 100 bottles and bags of spices and herbs. Not everyone wants to drive five miles to a grocery store just to get one spice, particularly if the contents in your pan are about to burn. Dear harried chefs, this spice substitution list is dedicated to you.

Allspice – Cassia, cinnamon, ginger, mace, nutmeg, cloves (ground)BerbSpi-
Aniseed – fennel seed, anise extract (only a few drops)
Annato powder – turmeric
Cardamom – cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg
Cassia – allspice, cinnamon
Chili powder – cumin, hot pepper sauce, oregano
Cinnamon – allspice (use 1/4 as much), cassia, mace, nutmeg
Cloves, ground – allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg
Cumin – chili powder
Fennel seed – aniseed
Ginger – allspice, chili powder, cardamom, mace, nutmeg
Mace – allspice, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg
Mustard, powder – horseradish powder, wasabi powder (1/4 times as much), prepared mustard (3 times as much)
Nutmeg – allspice, cardamom, ginger, mace
Saffron – Only a dash for color of: annato powder, turmeric
Turmeric – annato powder, mustard powder

– 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, humor, international, recipes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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