Posts Tagged With: China

Cantonese Ginger Beef

Chinese Entree

CANTONESE GINGER BEEF

INGREDIENTS – MARINADE

¾ pound sirloin steak or flank steak
2 teaspoons sesame oil or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon mirin or rice wine
1 tablespoon light soy sauce or soy sauce
2 teaspoons cornstarch

INGREDIENTS – SAUCE

¼ cup chicken stock
4 teaspoons oyster sauce or hoisin sauce
¾ teaspoon light soy sauce or soy sauce
1 teaspoon cornstarch

INGREDIENTS – FINAL

1½” ginger root
3 scallions or green onions
1 cup peanut oil or vegetable oil

SPECIAL UTENSILS

wok (optional, not to be confused with an EwokTM. Although having an Ewok would be cool.)

Serves 4. Takes 45 minutes.

PREPARATION – MARINADE

Cut steak against the grain into as thin as possible slices. Cut these slices into 1″ squares. Add all marinade ingredients to large mixing bowl. Stir with hands until cornstarch is no longer visible and steak squares are well coated. Let sit for 20 minutes.

PREPARATION – SAUCE

While steak marinates, Add all sauce ingredients to small mixing bowl. Stir with fork until cornstarch is no longer visible.

PREPARATION – FINAL

Peel ginger root. Cut ginger root into thin strips or rounds. Cut scallions into ½” long pieces. Add peanut oil and marinated steak squares to wok. Sauté at medium-high for 3 minutes or until steak squares brown. Stir enough to ensure even browning. Remove steak squares and drain on paper towels. Remove all but 1 tablespoon oil from work.

Add ginger strips and scallion pieces to work. Sauté for 30 seconds. Stir frequently. Return steak squares and add sauce to wok. Stir fry using medium-high heat until liquid starts to boil and steak squares are cooked through. Stir frequently.

TIDBITS

1) America has the Easter Bunny. It is both a symbol of the Resurrection and of fertility.

2) Britain also has the Easter Bunny.

3) The Easter originally came to America from Germany.

4) But Germany hasn’t really celebrated the Easter Bunny for a long time.

5) Germany also started two world wars.

6) Coincidence? Perhaps.

7) Australia doesn’t have an Easter Bunny either. In 1859 or so, someone released rabbits into the wilds. The rabbits bred like rabbits. Soon, rabbits were displacing all sorts of native critters and munching acres upon acres of crops. Farmers hated that. So, Australia periodically wages a campaign against the rabbit hordes. But the rabbits keep coming back. Farmers still hate them.

8) Thus, the land Down Under doesn’t have an Easter Bunny. It has the Easter tilby. A tilby looks a bit like a rabbit. The tilby has great sex, producing eight babies a year. This number is apparently, less than what the rabbit can do. But even so, the Easter tilby isn’t as celebrated as the Easter Bunny is in other lands.

9) America, Britain, Germany, and even Australia aren’t the only nations with a rabbitish animal celebrating fertility.

10) Oh no, the Cantonese region of China honors fecundity through cattle.

11) What is the singular form of cattle? Technically, there isn’t one. However, extensive research –Watching hours of the TV show Rawhide–gives us “beeves” as an alternative word for “cattle.” “Beef” is the singular form of “Beeves.” There you go.

12) It might seem strange for a beef to symbolize fertility. Would a bee have been a much better representative for reproduction?

13) Yes, it would have. Except that in 1884, a British newspaper, The Lion, wrote an article about Canton’s annual Bee Festival. Only The Lion didn’t say that. A misprint turned the celebration into the Beef Festival.

14) Hundreds of thousands of tourists thronged Canton to honor beef., spending millions of pounds while there. The Cantonese government knowing a good thing when they saw it, officially renamed the event, The Beef Festival. Local restaurateurs developed this dish to serve their British guests. 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 amazon.com.

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Finnish Hot Dog Sauce (Nakkikastike)

Finnish Entree

HOT DOG SAUCE
(Nakkikastike)

INGREDIENTS

1 pound hot dogs or sausages
1 medium onion
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons flour
1¾ cups beef broth
¾ cup cream
3 tablespoons ketchup
½ teaspoon pepper

Serves 4. Takes 30 minutes.

PREPARATION

Cut hot dogs into circles ½” thick. Dice onion. Add onion and vegetable oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Add hot-dog circles. Stir until well blended. Sauté for 3 minutes or until hot-dog slices brown.

Lower heat to medium. Add flour. Fry until flour turns browns. Mix until well blended. Add beef broth. Stir with whisk until there are no lumps. Bring to boil using medium-high heat. Stir frequently. Add cream, ketchup, and pepper. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally. Goes well with mashed potatoes.

TIDBITS

1) Culinary historians tell us this Finnish dish actually came from China some thousands of years ago and that it was originally called Yin Yang. Indeed, culinary philosophers maintain that Yin Yang is a Chinese philosophical concept that describes how apparently opposite forces may actually be complementary and interconnected in the culinary world. Later Chinese philosophers extended this concept to the entire natural world. Now everybody, not just chefs, can have big thinks about how things fit together.

2) Just so you know, it’s extremely windy outside my window.

3) For some 217 years, 9 months, and 26 days, Chinese debated on what were the grand universal twin powers from which flowed all opposite and complementary forces. Then Chef Tai Chi Pei piped up, “The twin universal powers are Hot Dog Sauce and Mashed Potatoes.” All the philosophers agreed at once. It’s just one of things that had been hard to see, but became incredibly obvious once presented. This revolutionary idea made its way to Finland via the Silk Road. Inner-truth seeking Finnish chefs gave culinary shape to this philosophy with this dish. 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 amazon.com.

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Brown Sugar Honey Mustard Smoked Ham

American Entree

BROWN SUGAR HONEY MUSTARD SMOKED HAM

INGREDIENTS

10 pounds ham
⅓ cup barbecue rub
no-stick spray
1⅓ cup brown sugar
1 cup honey mustard
2 cups orange juice

SPECIAL UTENSILS

smoker
apple or cherry wood chunks
meat thermometer
disposal aluminum pan
sonic obliterator

Takes 7 hours 30 minutes. (Times vary with smoker.) Serves 15.

PREPARATION

Preheat smoker to 250 degrees. Add wood chunks to smoker. Rub barbecue rub onto ham. Score ham in a diamond patter ½” deep. Spray disposal aluminum pan with no-stick spray. Let ham sit out at room temperature for 1 hour. Add ham to aluminum pan. Cook for 1 hour

While ham cooks for 1 hour, add brown sugar, honey mustard, and orange juice to mixing bowl. Mix with fork or whisk until well blended. This is the glaze. Cook until temperature registered by meat thermometer reaches145 degrees. Baste ham with glaze every 45 minutes until done. Remove ham and let sit for 20 minutes

TIDBITS

1) Sometimes, ingredients can be hard to find. Once I looked for a specific herb for a Mongolian dish. However, this herb could only be found in a remote part of northwestern China. You need to get permission from the Chinese authorities to go there. Chinese police will probably start to tail you when you start looking all over the land for this rare herb. And even then, it’s seasonal. I opted for a substitute herb.

2) Then there are instances, like for this recipe. I wanted a 7-pound ham. My local supermarket did not have a ham in the refrigerated aisles. They did not have one on display at the butcher. They did not have one there. They did not have one anywhere. I asked the butcher if there might be one at the back. He said no. He added there were no hams in all of Poway, my fair city. I eventually found a ten-pounder 30 miles away. So if your guests give you any guff about the meal you created, zap them with your sonic obliterator. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your kitchen.

 

– 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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Zambian Chicken Stew

Zambian Entree

CHICKEN STEW

INGREDIENTS

1 garlic clove
1 medium onion
1 large tomato
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (2 more tablespoons later)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 pounds chicken pieces, bone-in, skin-on
2 cups chicken stock
½ cup spinach
⅓ cup peanuts, unsalted
½ teaspoon ginger powder
1 teaspoon seasoned salt

SPECIAL UTENSIL

Dutch oven

Serves 5. Takes 50 minutes.

PREPARATION

Dice garlic, onion, and tomato. Add garlic, onion, and 2 tablespoons oil to Dutch oven. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion and garlic soften. Stir frequently. Remove garlic and onion. Add 2 tablespoons oil. Add chicken pieces. Fry chicken pieces for 10 minutes until they turn completely gold brown on both sides. Turn enough to ensure even browning.

Add back garlic and onion Add tomato and chicken stock. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir occasionally. While stew simmers, dice spinach and grind peanuts until they form a paste. Add ginger powder, seasoned salt, spinach, and peanut paste. Cover. Simmer for 5 minutes or until chicken pieces become tender. Stir occasionally.

TIDBITS

1) As you can see, the next recipe is Chicken Stew. That stew is from Zimbabwe. Other nations have chicken stew recipes including: America, South Africa, India, and China.

2) Some people say aliens came to prehistoric Earth and gave the recipe for Chicken Stew to cavemen on every continent. Mainstream archeologists discount that theory, noting there are no cave recipes to be found on any cave wall nor even paintings of the necessary ingredients. Culinary archeologists assert that the recipe was spread when Lucien, Lucy of Olduvai Gorge’s brother, told the recipe to all he met. Setting out to China, he found himself in Zambia and Zimbabwe. Lucien’s wife then asked for directions and so, the recipe-spreading family continued on its trek.

 

– 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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Fun Festivals – Swamp Soccer World Cup

Love soccer? Lover a shorter game? Love mud?  Head on over to Finland and Scotland.* The last Swamp Soccer World Championship (SCWC)  I could find took place in Finland. It might have even been held in Hyrynsalmi, Finland  At any rate, the SCWC is usually held in Finland in the middle of June (Sorry, you missed it this year.) 200-to-300 teams from all over the world compete. The SCWC which has been organized by the so-called Swamp Barno Jyrki Väänänen** since 1998. There are five different ways to compete: men’s, women’s, mixed, men’s hobby, and Masters of Swamp.

The Soccer World Cup is usually held in Scotland on the last weekend of June, just after the World Championship in Finland.. There are rumors of it being held in China, India. and Turkey.

Six players are on each side. Each half lasts for 12 minutes. There are no offside penalties. This is fantastic for all those who never understood the rule in the first place. Other little rules abound. As of about 2018, no Polish team had ever competed.

For my Italian readers, these four sentences translate as Ami il calcio? Ami un gioco più breve? Ami il fango? Dirigiti verso Finlandia e Scozia.

For my English speaking readers, this translates as Swamp Baron Jyrki Väänänen who got the whole thing started. Yay Jyrki!

Swamp soccer arose from the practice of Finnish cross-country skiers to train in swamps.

Mud soccer is lots of fun. Be sure to register for the next Swamp Soccer madness, whether in Finland, Scotland, or whenever. Let me know how it turns out.

 

– 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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Fun Festivals – Tossing Tomatoes at La Tomatina

The world’s best tomato festival, La Tomatina, is held in Buñol, Spain. The festival starts with the eating of many different tomato-based dishes. Yum! However, dining on the tomato is not the reason for La Tomatina’s extraordinary popularity. The festival hosts the world’s biggest tomato fight. Yippee.

Strangely enough this fun festival grew out of parade where musicians and people dressed up as giants and big heads. The local youth, decided to join the parade, as who would not? I mean giants and big heads. The teens got rambunctious. One of the marchers lost his fake head in the commotion. He became angry and started hitting all the young folks that came near him.

The teens took offense at this battery. As fate would have it, the young ones were next to a vegetable cart. The local youth grabbed tomatoes and other veggies and threw them at the battering marcher. Well, the aim of most people is rather poor and most of the hurled tomatoes missed their target. The people hit by these errant missiles got angry. So, they hurled tomatoes back. And missed. Hitting still others. Soon, the tomato tossing became general, just like all those bar fights in Western movies.

The following year, Buñol’s youth commemorated the event by staging a fake argument that deteriorated into a tomato-throwing free for all. The authorities, not foreseeing the tourist draw this tomato hurling would become, broke up the fight. But the tomato-hurling came back the next year. Now la Tomatina happens every year. Why? Because it’s such great fun. Locals hose down the participants. Authorities hose down the streets. So much citric acid, from the tomatoes, gets everywhere that the washed streets will sparkle.

I want to go to La Tomatina. So let’s go there some time. We’ll arrange a meeting. Stay tuned.

Authorities banned this tomato tossing once. Possibly to honor my birth. Possibly because police traditionally look askance at anything resembling a riot. Anyway, devotees of the festival protested this by carrying a huge tomato in a coffin through the center of town. Buñol’s authorities relented and from then on allowed the La Tomatina Festival to continue. Really! Is that all it takes to make the authorities relent? Just carry a tomato-laden coffin through town. (Writes this down for future reference.)

La Tomatina increases in popularity every year and occurs on the last Wednesday in August. Up to 100,000 people attend. It’s so popular that you must buy tickets to attend. Now, the world has finally taken notice. Similar events take place in Colorado, Nevada, Colombia, Costa Rica, China, and India. La Tomatina has made its way in to movies around the world and even into a Mickey Mouse(tm) episode.

Unfortunately, the festival was not held in 2020 and will not be held this year, because of the Covid pandemic. Let us strongly hope that we can soon, and safely, engage in boisterous fun once again.

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

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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Peanut Butter French Toast

Hong Kong Breakfast

PEANUT BUTTER FRENCH TOAST

INGREDIENTS

4 slices thick white bread*
6 tablespoons condensed milk
¼ cup smooth peanut butter
3 eggs
½ cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons butter
½ cup golden syrup or maple syrup

* = Really should be milk bread, but it’s powerful hard to find outside an Asian bakery.

Serves 2 or 4, depending if you want to skip the next meal. These really are calorie bombs. Takes 30 minutes.

PREPARATION

Spread 1st bread slice with 3 tablespoons condensed milk. Spread a 2nd bread slice with 2 tablespoons peanut butter. Place 2nd bread slice, peanut butter side down, on 1st bread slice. Gently press the bread slice together to make a sealed sandwich. Repeat for 2nd sandwich..

Add eggs to mixing bowl. Whisk eggs until well blended. Dredge the sandwiches through the eggs until they are well coated, but not soggy. Add vegetable oil to pan. Fry at medium-high heat for 1-to-2 minutes on each side or until golden brown. (The 2nd sandwich is likely to take less than the 1st.) Remove sandwich. Add 1 tablespoon butter to the middle of the top slice. Drizzle ¼ cup golden syrup over sandwich. Cut in half, if desired. Repeat for remaining sandwich.

TIDBITS

1) Asphalt roads are built with asphalt.

2) The Yellow Brick Road was built with yellow bricks.

3) The Silk Road was built with silk. Silk is strong. This is why construction crews prize silkworms so highly. Look up how many silkworms were employed building the Empire State Building.

4) The recently completed Peanut Butter French Toast Road (PBFTR) was built with peanut butter French toast. Of course, Of course, newly cooked peanut French toast while tasty is completely unable to support the weigh of a big-rig truck or even a bicycle. You have to let the toast dry out. In the meantime, workers can be fed using the same peanut butter French toast. Name one other road-building material that’s edible. Not concrete, let me tell you. The closest thing America has to China’s culinary engineering is its famed Tobacco Road.

Chef Paul

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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Pabellón Criollo

Venezuelan Entree

PABELLÓN CRIOLLO

INGREDIENTS – PULLED MEAT

3 garlic cloves (2 more cloves later)
1 medium onion
1 tomato
2 pounds flank steak
1 bay leaf
¼ teaspoon cumin (¼ teaspoon more later)
1 teaspoon oregano
¼ teaspoon pepper (¼ teaspoon more later)
3 quarts water (or enough to cover ingredients)

INGREDIENTS – BLACK BEANS

2 garlic cloves
1 small onion
¼ cup olive oil or oil (¼ cup more later)
1 green bell pepper
1 15-ounce-can black beans
¼ teaspoon cumin
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt

INGREDIENTS – RICE & PLANTAINS

1⅓ cups rice
2 plantains or bananas
½ cup olive oil or oil

SPECIAL UTENSILS

3-quart pot
4 plates with 3 sections. These are mighty hard to find if you’re looking for them at the last moment.
sonic obliterator

Serves 4. Takes 2 hours 50 minutes.

PREPARATION – PULLED MEAT

Dice 3 garlic cloves, medium onion, and tomato. Add diced garlic, onion, tomato, flank steak, bay leaf, ¼ teaspoon cumin, oregano, ¼ teaspoon pepper, and enough water to cover ingredients. Bring to boil using high heat. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 2 hours 30 minutes or until meat is tender to the fork. Remove and discard bay leaf. Remove meat and place on plate. Pull flank seat apart with forks. Save stock for future soups.

PREPARATION – BLACK BEANS

While flank steak simmers, mince 2 garlic cloves and small onion. Seed and dice green bell pepper. Add garlic, onion, green bell pepper, and ¼ cup olive oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Add black beans, ¼ teaspoon cumin, ¼ teaspoon pepper, and salt. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir occasionally.

PREPARATION – RICE & PLANTAINS

About 30 minutes before flank steak should be ready to be pulled apart, cook rice according to instructions on package. Peel plantains. Cut plantains into slices 1″ wide diagonally along the length of the plantain. Add plantain and ½ cup oil to pan. Sauté slices for 3 minutes on each at medium heat or until plantain softens and browns.

PREPARATION – FINAL STEP

This step is much easier if you have a plate that is divided into 3 sections. Carefully add enough pulled flank steak to make a pie wedge that takes up ⅓ of the plate. Carefully add enough beans next to the flank steak to make a pie wedge taking up ⅓ of the plate. Carefully add (Yes, you are doing things carefully here.) enough rice to take up the remaining ⅓ of the plate. Add ¼ of the plantain slices to the outside of the rice pie-wedge.

Zap, with your sonic obliterator, any guests who fail to appreciate just how much heart and soul went into the preparation of this dish.

TIDBITS

1) This dish, pabellón criollo, is enormously popular, among Venezuelans. So much so, that Venezuelans will bring the ingredients for this dish wherever they travel or migrate.

2) And boy, they sure have migrated. On May 1, 16,870 BC priests revealed to the proto-Venezuelans that their gods would be having a millennium-long jamboree in a land beyond the Great Mother Sea. Of course, everyone knows the best time to petition gods is when they’ve been drinking, eating pulled beef, and dancing and singing up a storm.

3) So, all the proto-Venezuelans took to their rafts and floated and paddled their way down the east coast of South America, suffered ice storms in the Straights of Magellan, endured fresh-water deprivation, and got eaten by gigantic sharks and whales.

4) All of which sucked, especially when compared to jamboreeing with the gods. So once there, the proto-Venezuelans stayed and planted rice. This is how rice came to India, Vietnam, China, and Japan.

5) The proto-Venezuelans were pretty happy. Then the gods’ beer ran out. The deities became surly and hurled thunderbolts and really hard bread rolls at the humans.

6) Life sucked again. Enough to brave the perils of an ocean voyage back home. This is how peoples from Asia settled the Americas, not by the headline hunters who crossed the land bridge from Siberia to Alaska.

Chef Paul

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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Bad Advice Friday + 1, 08-11-17

I am ready. I am able to dispense with stupendously bad advice. It’s one date late because:

1) I was serving on the Neighborhood Plate Tectonics Watch.

2) I was wondering where all my orphan socks went to.

3) I spent all afternoon thinking it would be way cool to be able to walk on the ceiling.

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TLR asks: Should I put a nasty note on this truck?

Dear TLR: No, as tempting as that might be, you can’t out puswad a puswad. Unless, of course, you have access to a particle accelerator. First, rent a large tow truck. Put the puswad’s truck on the tow truck. You might need to buy and speed read, The Complete Freaking Moron’s Guide to Operating a Tow Truck. You should also buy, The Complete Freaking Moron’s Guide to Speed Reading. Okay, the offending truck is ready to be towed.

Drive your tow truck to a site with a large particle accelerator. Ask to be let in. Note: your chances of success go up if you say please and thank you. If they say no, you can probably bash down the gate with your heavy tow truck. One inside, get the mean person’s truck into the particle accelerator. You will have to work quickly if you bashed down the gate. Press the button marked, “Accelerate,” and whoosh, the meanie’s truck will soon reach a velocity close to the speed of light. Any collision between the truck and particle accelerator’s walls will disintegrate the truck. Sweep up the atomized bits of truck–cleanliness is always in style–and go back to the parking lot. Place the back of atomized truck pits where the truck originally took up four spots. Add a sign that reads, “Next time it will be you that gets atomized if you park like a jerk.” Now that will get the jerk’s attention.

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KD asks: Will it ever be acceptable to openly roll one’s eyes when one sees someone do something ridiculous like hold up entering the bus to finish a text? O_O

Dear KD: Oh yes, it already is. However, just rolling your eyes is no longer enough. The texting doofus needs to be taught a lesson. Simply throw a loosely wrapped package of lutefisk, five pounds should be heavy enough, at the texter. The force and stench of the hurled lutefisk will knock him backwards and onto the sidewalk. He’ll a nasty bump on his head that he’ll never forget. Don’t worry about the people on the bus. They’ll be happy that the bus will no longer be delayed. They’ll also never have to smell that lutefisk again. It’s a win-win outcome for everyone.

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CA asks: What is the sound of one hand clapping?

Dear CA: The metal thingy hanging from the metal of a giant six-foot high church bell is called a clapper. This is your clue. Simply climb up the side of a church–the Spanish missions in California are good places to try–and get inside. You’ll need to wear clothes that match the color of the church’s walls or you’ll be spotted and stopped. Once inside the bell, smash your hand into the side of the bell. The sound you’ll hear before becoming permanently deaf will be the sound of one hand clapping.

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CC asks: What’s a good date plan for a couple that have been married for over 30 years?

Dear CC: After 30 years, you’ve probably done every possible type of date there is. Except, sky diving over an active volcano. Hire a pilot to fly you over the center of the lava spurting volcano. You might have to ask around a lot before you find one willing to do this. Be persistent.

Simply strap on your parachutes and jump out the plane. Be sure to wait for the pilot’s signal. Safety, as always, is important. When the time is right, pull the cord and your parachute will deploy. Did you take parachuting lessons? I hope so. Twist so that at the last moment you will veer away from the death-vomiting volcano.

Is this dangerous? Yes, it is. But if all goes well, you and your sweetheart will have drawn closer together, your love forged even stronger by fire. And sitting close to each other on a couch looking longingly into each other’s eye will be just what you’ll want to do for the rest of your lives.

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MA asks: If you write a book about failure and it doesn’t sell, would it be a success?

Dear MA: I’m not equipped to answer such a deep philosophical question. But the Tibetan monks would be. Now, the Chinese government is really a super huge dictatorship. Millions of members are in the ruling Communist party. I wouldn’t be surprised at all, really, if Guinness Book of RecordsTM lists the Chinese government as the biggest dictatorship ever.

Anyway, being a dictatorship and all, the Chinese government tries real hard to suppress all discontent against them. They are indeed very thorough about this. And it’s an atheistic ruling body as well. So, it’s real hard to believe they’d let you see a monk. So you’ll have sneak your way to one.

Two possibilities exist. First, fly to Shanghai. Slip by customs without being noticed. May I suggest pointing at the sky and yelling, “Look, Halley’s comet!” Continue to be invisible as you ride trains and busses to a monastery. Ask a monk. Get an answer. Revel in the enlightenment before sneaking your way back home. Second. fly to Bombay, now Mumbai. Take the train to the Tibetan border. Hire a Sherpa guide. Bring oxygen canisters to help you breathe as you cross the Himalayas. Oh and a warm fur parka will help you with the intense cold. Don’t forget to watch for bullets. The Chinese and Indian armies are currently skirmishing with each other. As above, get your answer and come back home.

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– 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: bad advice Friday | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Paul’s Banana Strawberry Nut Bread

American Breakfast

PAUL’S BANANA STRAWBERRY NUT BREAD

INGREDIENTS

3 bananas (overripe ones are better)
5 ripe strawberries
½ cup pecans
½ cup butter (softened or melted)
½ cup raisins
2 eggs
½ cup sugar
2¾ teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
⅛ teaspoon salt
¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
2¼ cups flour
no-stick spray

SPECIAL UTENSILS

spice grinder
electric beater
9″ x 5″ loaf pan

Makes 1 loaf. Takes 1 hour 20 minutes.

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel bananas. Put bananas and strawberrues in large mixing bowl. Mash or smoosh with potato masher or fork. Chop pecans or grind with spice grinder until all the pecan bits are quite small. Add butter, pecan bits, raisins, eggs, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla extract to mixing bowl. Blend with electric beater set on medium or “cake.” With electric beater running, gradually add all the flour. Blend until the batter is smooth. Spray loaf pan with no-stick spray. Pour batter into pan. Put pan in oven. Cook for 45 minutes or until a toothpick or fork inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool for 20 minutes. Turn loaf pan over onto a plate.

TIDBITS

1) This is a moist and tasty bread. However, it would surely harden like a brick if left out under a hot, summer Sun and forgotten. Indeed, the Great Wall of China, built to keep out northern invaders, was constructed with banana-strawberry-bread bricks. These ingredients arrived via caravan along the great Banana Strawberry Road, stretching from Bananistan to Peking. The fruit bricks of Great Wall did their job until the advent of the Mongols, fierce fruit lovers who ate their way through. No country has a built a culinary wall ever since.

– 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 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

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