Posts Tagged With: cro magnons

Motivational Poster #6, Become A Chemist

Humanity has always been doggedly slogging away from the primordial ooze from whence it came. The advances from hominids to the first human, Lucy of Olduvai Gorge, came slowly. Then we evolved into Neanderthals, next Cro Magnons, and finally to our current state, the Modern Human. Along the way, we learned to hunt, raise crops, and build settlements. All of these advances were pretty darn exciting. People buzzed about the new achievements for decades.

But that was also a problem. The advances did take decades, if not millennia, to occur. Then chemists got involved. And Bam! Boom! The ideas and inventions kept coming, faster and faster. Before one could take down the year’s calendar, a new breakthrough in chemistry had occurred. And those new achievements were whizz-bang ones as well. Thanks to chemists we now have: distillation, gunpowder, pharmaceuticals, chemical batteries, petroleum, and plastics. “Those chemists have done it all,” I hear you say. “There’s no more breakthroughs to be had.”

But you’d be wrong. Why just recently, after extensive research, chemists came up with sliced peanut butter. Yes, no longer must we labor excavating peanut butter out of its jar and then, and then, spreading it painstakingly over a fragile slice of bread. Now, thanks to those visionaries we can simply peel off a slice of peanut butter and place it easily on a slice of bread. Life is good! Life is truly good. We are living in a golden age. Life couldn’t possibly improve.

But you’d be in error once more. That is if we don’t run out of chemists. A world without chemists is a world without blessed innovation. We need new chemists. Will you be one? The current and future generations will be ever so 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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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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Frito Pie In a Bag

American Entree

FRITO PIE IN A BAG

INGREDIENTS

2 green onions
1 pound ground beef
1 30-ounce can chili beans (no meat)
1 10-ounce can diced tomatoes and green chiles
6 1-ounce bags Fritos(tm)
6 tablespoons sour cream
1 cup grated cheddar cheese

Serves 6. Takes 20 minutes.

PREPARATION

Dice green onions. Add ground beef to pan. Fry at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until browned. Stir enough to ensure even browning. Add chili beans and diced tomatoes and green chiles. Cook at medium heat for 5 minutes or until thoroughly warmed. Stir enough to blend and keep from burning.

Cut out most of one side of each bag or simply open the bag at the top. Top the Fritos in each bag evenly with pan contents, followed by sour cream, and then cheddar cheese. Garnish with green onions.

TIDBITS

1) Frito Pie In a Bag is also known as a “walking tacos” in America’s Midwest.

2) Tacos, of course, cannot walk. Cannot. This means that at one time tacos could walk.

3) Indeed, for according to culinary archeologists, the huge hard-shell* taco grazed the Indianapolis Gorge in 3,199,978 B.C,. They proved this by unearthing the bones of a young woman, Mabel, who held a fossilized four-legged Taco.

* = Proof that tacos are meant to be crunchy.

4) Unfortunately, this discovery never became common knowledge, because the Leakys had already discovered the bones of Lucy. Lucy’s remains are 3,200,000 years old. Just 22 years older than Mabel’s, but enough to get all the glory. Now no one remembers reading about Mabel and her taco.

5) But we do recall Mabel’s taco in a way, For Mabel’s DNA got passed down from Midwestern homonids to Neanderthals to Cro Magnons, and finally to Modern Humans. Inheriting Mabel’s genes, naturally means current Midwesterners love Walking Tacos. Now you know.

 

Paul De Lancey, concerned citizen and 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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Chilli Taiyo (Spicy Tuna Casserole)

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 can 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 entree is served in a round bowl.

2) Have bowls always been round?

3) No, although culinary archeologists have found many round bowls in Cro-Magnon burial grounds, the evidence shows that Neanderthals used rectangular bowls.

4) Moreover, when experts say that Neanderthalic bowls were rectangular, they were being generous. Not a single bowl fashioned by a Neanderthal boasts of having a straight edge. It’s almost as if the neanderthals didn’t care if their bowls made a fashion statement. In fact, the Neanderthals often made bowls with more than four angles, with hardly any of them being 90 degrees.

5) Please refer to the definitive study on this matter: von Kartofflen, Otto, Ph.D., “Lack of Geometric Precision in Neanderthalic Bowls, Indifference or Straight-Edge and Right-Angle-Tool Technology Deprivation, Prehistoric Research, August, 1973.

6) Many culinary researchers believe possession of round bowls enabled the Cro Magnons to overcome their Neanderthal cousins. Perhaps the round bowls could be hurled farther, like a discus.

7) This discus-bowl theory is gaining more and more credence. One only has to look at Ancient Greek paintings on vases. The earliest depictions show the athletes flinging round bowls. As time went on, discuses supplanted the bowls.

8) In 1673 B.C., geometricians of Sumer-Akkad develop the first straight edges and right angles. People could now dine out and eat off tables! It was the first golden age of dining out.

9) But this golden age of eating, did not last for ever. For in the times of legend, knights all wanted to be seated nearest to the king while feasting. The closer you were to your liege lord’s chair, the more prestige you had. If you sat far away, the more prestigious knights would laugh at you and say “Na na na poo poo” to say and you would hang your head in shame.

10) But then the quite possibly fictitious ruler, King Arthur, thought why not make a round table? With such a table, there is no specific king’s chair, so no one will know how far, in advance, how much or little prestige they have when sitting down to sup. This idea worked marvelously well. Jockeying for position and status by the knights in the feasting hall disappeared.

11) Hundreds of years later, a knight noticed that you could count how many spots you sat away from the king. War, born out of rivalry, would have broken out but for the soothing round shapes of their soup bowls. It was a near run thing. This is why bowls, to this day, are always round.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Round shape brings peace.                                                                       Rectangular shape brings war.

 

– 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: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Beef Rendang

Indonesian Entree

BEEF RENDANG

INGREDIENTS

4 red chiles
1 inch galangal or ginger root
5 garlic cloves
¾ teaspoon peppercorns
6 shallots
1 inch turmeric root
1 stalk lemongrass
2 pounds beef tenderloin or top round
2 tablespoons oil
1 inch cinnamon stick
½ tablespoon salt
3 kaffir lime leaves or ½ teaspoon lime zest
1 salam leaf or bay leaf
3 13-ounce cans coconut milk

SPECIAL UTENSIL

spice grinder

Serves 4. Takes 2 hours 45 minutes.

PREPARATION

Seed red chiles. Add red chile, galangal, garlic cloves, peppercorns, shallots, and turmeric to spice grinder. Grind until these spices become paste. Remove and discard upper ⅔rd of lemongrass stalk. Remove and discard the three outer layers. Dice remaining lemongrass. Cut beef into 1″ cubes.

Add spice paste and oil to work or large pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 2 minutes or until paste becomes fragrant. Stir constantly. Add all remaining ingredients to wok. Bring to boil using high heat. Stir frequently. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 1 hour. Stir enough to prevent burning. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes or until the milky part of the liquid is gone, leaving a little bit of coconut oil. (Most of the liquid should be evaporated.) Stir enough to prevent burning. Simmer on low for another 15 minutes or until beef and sauce turn brown. Remove cinnamon stick, bay leaf, and kaffir lime leaves. Goes well with rice.

TIDBITS

1) The dish into the above picture is served on, well, a dish. The dish is round.

2) Why is it not square?

3 )Because you cannot roll something is square

4) Why does it matter if you can roll a dish? After all, if you rolled the above dish before you ate, you lost the food.

5) Clearly, the round shape was designed for something else in mind.

6) What was that?

7) One theory, advanced by culinary, archeologists, is that primitive caveman invented the stone FrisbeeTM.

8) They didn’t call it the Frisbee, of course. It’s named after the Frisbee Pie Company which sold its wares in round pie dishes.

9) Culinary historians believe most prehistoric companies were called Ogg, Inc. because nearly all cavemen were named Ogg. Cavewomen were called Ogg.

10) Therefore, these ancient humans probably named their invention the OggTM.

11) Isn’t surprising early humankind possessed the knowledge to incorporate and trademark things?

12) Alas though, the Ogg proved a dismal failure. If you didn’t catch it, it hit you in the head and that was that.

13) Indeed, culinary historians believe widespread Ogg playing extinguished the Neanderthals.

14) After a much briefer fling with the sport, the Cro Magnons abandoned Ogg tossing.

15) Tossing the Ogg around was supposed to be a fun leisure time activity. But making the circular Ogg took up all their free time. So, what was the point of making Oggs?

16) None, the Cro Magnons concluded. So, they went on to make spears, axes, animal skins, and the like. Humanity went on not quite a talc age, which is a bit below a golden age.

17) Throwing round things became a popular sport in Ancient Greek Olympics. Physically fit from throwing the much lighter and metallic Ogg–by then called the discus–Greeks explored the entire known world.

18) The Romans, inheritors of Greek civilization, conquered the entire Mediterranean and much of northwestern Europe. The Roman built roads to facilitate rapid deployment of legions from crisis point to another. And we all know, the Roman legionnaire loved to throw the discus.

19) The Roman army passed on discuss throwing to the natives wherever they went. The natives became buff as well. So, the Roman conquest proved to be quite the good thing for the locals once everybody got past the initial wholesale slaughter-and-enslavement phase. And ever since then we have lived in a round-thingy-throwing golden age.

20) But it’s sobering to think how the Cro Magnons, the last remaining branch of humankind, came to throwing themselves into extinction.

– 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

SPAM Fried Rice

Guamanian Entree

SPAM(TM) FRIED RICE

INGREDIENTS

1 cup rice
2 garlic cloves
1 small onion
1 12-ounce can SPAM
2 tablespoons oil
3 eggs
¼ cup soy sauce

Serves 4. Takes 35 minutes.

PREPARATION

Cook rice according to instructions on package. Mince garlic cloves and onion. Cut SPAM into ½” cubes. Add garlic cloves, onion, and oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Remove garlic and onion and set aside. Keep any oil. Add eggs to pan. Scramble eggs at medium heat for 2 minutes or until eggs are done to your liking. Remove scrambled eggs and slice any large bits into ¼” wide strips.

Add SPAM cubes to pan. Cook at high heat for 3 minutes or until SPAM starts to brown. Stir occasionally. Add garlic, onion, and eggs back to pan. Add rice and soy sauce. Cook at medium heat for 2 minutes or until all is warm and the rice is brown.

TIDBITS

1) Guamanian is the adjective for something from Guam. Ché Guevarra–If this is spelled correctly, it is purely by chance–was a revolutionary.

2) A Guavanian is someone from Guava. Well no, it isn’t. Guava is a bush. The guava bush’s fruit is a guava. No, people live in or around a guava bush. Thus, there are no Guavanians. Indeed, there is no guavanian anything. The adjective for guava is guava.

3) Indeed, this has been the case since prehistoric times. Exactly sometime ago, Cro Magnons switched from herding mastodons and sabertooth tigers to herding the rather more stationary and easygoing guava bush.

4) Che Chevarra–How the heck do you spell his name?–loved sedentary guavas. You can tell he was direct descendant of Cro Magnons. However, Ché didn’t know how to spell guavas. So, if he couldn’t spell guavas, you can’t really expect people to spell his last name correctly. It’s kinda like spelling Benadryl(TM) Cumberbund’s name correctly, who by the way also descends from Cro Magnons.

Chef Paulcookbookhunks

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with 180 wonderful recipes is available on amazon.com. My newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, is also available on amazon.com

Categories: cuisine, history, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Golumkies)

Polish Entree

STUFFED CABBAGE ROLLS
(Golumkies)

INGREDIENTSstuffedcabbage

1 medium cabbage head
½ cup rice
3 garlic cloves
1 small onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 egg
1 pound ground beef
½ pound ground pork
¼ teaspoon sweet basil or basil
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon parsley
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon sugar
1½ cups tomato sauce
½ cup diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar or vinegar

SPECIAL UTENSILS

9″ x 13″ casserole dish
8-quart pot
x-ray vision
kitchen scissors

Makes 12 cabbage rolls. Takes 2 hours.

PREPARATION

Add cabbage head to 8-quart pot. Add enough water to cover cabbage. Bring to boil using high heat. Boil for 15 minutes or until leaves are soft and pliable enough to be removed easily. Remove cabbage from pot. Let sit until leaves are cool enough to be removed by hand. Drain cabbage. Remove and reserve damaged outer leaves. Carefully remove 12 leaves. Snip off the top part of the large spines on the cabbage leaves. This will make folding the cabbage rolls easier.

While cabbage boils, cook rice according to instructions on package. Dice garlic and onion. Add garlic, onion, and olive oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until garlic and onion soften. Beat egg in small bowl with whisk.

Add garlic, onion, rice, egg, ground beef, ground pork, sweet basil, paprika, parsley, and pepper to large mixing bowl. Mix ingredients with hands until well blended. Place 1/12 of the rice/meat mixture in the lower, middle part of a boiled cabbage leaf. Fold the sides of the leaf over the rice/meat mixture. Roll up the leaf from the bottom to make a cabbage roll. Repeat for the other 11 leaves.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add sugar, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and white wine vinegar to mixing bowl. Mix with whisk. Place damaged outer cabbage leaves on the bottom and on the sides of casserole dish. (This helps prevent the cabbage rolls from burning.) Place cabbage rolls seam side down in casserole dish. Pour tomato sauce/crushed tomatoes over cabbage rolls. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until meat is done.

(The doneness of the meat is difficult to assess without x-ray vision. If for some reason you don’t possess that capability, may I suggest discretely sampling one? Okay, okay that cabbage roll is yours.)

Place cabbage rolls on plates. Ladle tomato sauce from casserole dish onto cabbage rolls.

TIDBITS

1) There is only one way to spell “taco.” That way is “taco.” However, this are multiple ways to spell this entree, “golumkies.” They are: golumpkies, golabkis, and galumkies. There are probably many other spellings used by underground culinary cultures.

2) There are many, many taco trucks in America. But there aren’t many golumki trucks. This goes back to tidbit 1. All hungry eaters know what they’ll be enjoying when they go up to a taco truck.

3) What if you grew up thinking the correct spelling was golabki?. What if you saw a golumki truck on your street corner? What if you also suffered from dyslexia? You might think the vendor was selling “K gum oil.” You wouldn’t buy that, certainly not the “K” variety. You’d scurry down to the other corner where a truck owner sold tacos. The word tacos is so well known that even dyslexics won’t confuse it with any other word.

4) Lefthanders are much more likely to suffer from dyslexia than are northpaws.

5) There was a time way back when people walked hunched over. Half of them were cro magnon and the others were neanderthals.

6) We know now a right-handed cro magnon named Bartolomeo Diaz killed the first elk. It was delicious, especially cooked that new-fangled way with fire. In fact Bartolomeo routinely won all the caveman chef contests. Bartolomeo, being a kind hearted soul, rushed to all the neighboring caves and wrote, “I so gum elk.” Cavemen, notorious for bad dental hygiene, usually lost all their teeth by adulthood. So their word for “eat” was “gum.”

7) The right-handed cro magnons read Bartolomeo’s words and hunted elk. Elk meat is high in protein. The cro magnons grew in strength and stature. They would conquer the animal kingdom and rule the world.

8) Neanderthals were all lefthanded dyslexics. They interpreted the cave-wall writing as “golumkies.” They stopped all hunter-gatherings and searched for golumki trucks. There were no prehistoric golumki trucks. There are none now. The neanderthals died out. Bummer.

– 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: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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