Posts Tagged With: Louis XVI

Pumpkin Seed Meatballs (Kanda)

Central African Entree

PUMPKIN SEED MEATBALLS
(Kanda)

INGREDIENTS

3½ cups shelled, lightly toasted pumpkins or squash seeds
6 garlic cloves
1 medium onion (1 more later)
1¼ pounds ground beef
½ cup water (if needed)
1 medium onion
4 tomatoes
1 cayenne chile pepper or chile pepper
6 tablespoons palm oil or peanut oil
½ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup water
1 cup fresh parsley

SPECIAL UTENSILS

food processor
mandoline (optional)

Serves 6. Takes 1 hour 50 minutes.

PREPARATION

Add pumpkin seeds to food processor. Grind seeds until they become a powder. Mince garlic and 1 onion. Add pumpkin-seed powder, garlic, and onion to large mixing bowl. Blend with hands. (If needed to form a moist round meatball, gradually add up to ½ cup water, blending each time water is added.) Form mix into 1″ meatballs and chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

While meatballs chill, use mandoline to cut 1 onion into ¼” strips. Dice tomatoes. Seed and mince cayenne pepper. Add palm oil to large pan. Heat oil at medium-high heat or until a little bit of onion in oil starts to dance. Add onion slices, tomato, and cayenne chile pepper. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion slices soften. Stir frequently. Add pepper and salt. Stir.

Add 1 cup water. Bring water and sauce to boil using high heat. Stir occasionally. Gently add meatballs to pan. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir gently and occasionally. Reduce heat to warm-low and simmer for another 30 minutes. Stir gently and occasionally. Dice parsley. Garnish meatballs with parsley. This entree goes well with rice.

TIDBITS

1) Pumpkins are round. Balloons are also round.

2) This similarity is no coincidence; Louis XVI loved pumpkin seeds.

3) What the king of France wanted, the king of France got.

4) So great merchant fleets set out from France to import pumpkins from the Spanish territory of Peru. These Peruvian pumpkins cost the royal treasury a million francs every year.

5) Disaster struck in 1777. Pirates based from British Jamaica captured the French fleet bound for Peru, along with its many chests of gold. This loss proved such a blow to French finances that its treasury wouldn’t recover until the next tidbit.

6) King Louis hired Jacques Necker to handle France’s money matter. For Monsieur Necker knew how to get the best price for everything, centuries before AmazonTM even. Many even said he’d able to count up to six billion if given enough time. And that is how many francs he borrowed.

7) The French navy could now buy enough ships to escort their pumpkin fleets to and from France. Then boom! The American Revolution started. France went to war with the British. The French fleet helped America gain its independence.

8) However, French naval expenditures trained the French treasury. Its navy wouldn’t put to sea for decades. This left King Louis’ annual pumpkin fleets unescorted, easy prey for British ships of the line.

9) What to do? Louis XVI having scooped out all the pumpkin seeds, looked down at the empty pumpkin and had an epiphany. Why not carry Peru’s pumpkins seeds back using giant, balloons made from empty pumpkins?

10) Well, of course, the Peruvian pumpkins of 1781 were not big enough to make balloons or even the baskets beneath them. So France bought up an enormous pumpkin farm in Peru dedicated to making enormous pumpkins. No franc was left unspent in pursuit of the venture.

11) By 1789, Louis XVI had no money. His finance minister asked the French nobility if it would accept new taxes. It said, “Na, na, na, poo, poo.” So Necker asked all of France for a gigantic weenie roast to discuss ways to raise revenue. Fine suggestions were made, then disaster struck. A nobleman cut in front of a long line of peasants waiting for weenies. Words were said. Knives with drawn. Before you could say François’s your uncle the French Revolution began.

12) King Louis would lose his head in the ensuing kerfuffle. Napoleon would seize power and discontinue the bigger-pumpkin experiment in Peru. So bummer.

13) However, so good came out of Louis’ misfortune. America borrowed the idea of France’s Great Weenie Roast of 1789 to celebrate every Fourth of July. And Peru’s big pumpkins are still the envy of the world.

– 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.

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

Quiche Lorraine

French Entree

QUICHE LORRAINE

INGREDIENTSQuiche Lorraine-

1 pastry pie shell (follow instructions)
8 ounces bacon (leanest is best)
4 ounces Gruyère cheese
4 eggs
1½ cups heavy whipping cream
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
⅛ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon salt

SPECIAL UTENSIL

pie tin

Makes 1 quiche. Takes 1 hour. A quiche is not a quickie.

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Trim excess fat from bacon. Fit puff pastry into pie tin. Use knife to trim all pastry that goes beyond the top edge of the pie tin. Add bacon to pan. Fry bacon using medium-high heat for 10 minutes or until bacon is cooked but not yet crispy. Remove and put on towel-covered plate to remove grease. Cut bacon into ½ squares. Sprinkle bacon squares onto puff pastry in pie tin. Grate cheese. Sprinkle cheese over bacon squares.

Add eggs, whipping cream, nutmeg, pepper, and salt to large mixing bowl. Blend thoroughly with whisk. Pour the egg/cream/spice mix over the cheese. Bake quiche in over at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the middle of the quiche comes out clean. Let quiche cool for about 10 minutes.

TIDBITS

1) In May, 1789, inmates of L‘Andouille Prison in Lorraine, France petitioned the Supreme Court to stop whipping, because it hurt even more than a stubbed toe. The judges, having lost their heads in affirming the use of the guillotine against jaywalkers, decided a bit of mercy wouldn’t be amiss. They ordered that prisoners be coated with cream before being whipped to take out the sting.

2) Whipping the cream coated convicts made whipping cream. Pierre Le Fou added this whipping cream to his daily ration–French prison life was not all bad–of bacon, Gruyère cheese, eggs, nutmeg, pepper, and salt and made the fist quiche Lorraine. Next time, he poured the mix not on his hand, but in a pastry pie shell. This was the first quiche Lorraine. The recipe spread to the Bastille prison. On July 14, food lovers stormed the Bastille for the convicts’ quiche Lorraines. King Louis XVI repressed the mob with muskets. The Parisians reacted with fury. The French Revolution was born. Blood would flow. Excesses would happen, but quiche Lorraine became available for all.

– Chef Paul

LutheranCookbook

My cookbook, Eat Me: 169 Fun Recipes From All Over the World,  and my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, are available in paperback or Kindle on amazon.com

The cookbook is also available as an e-book on Nook

or on my website-where you can get a signed copy at: www.lordsoffun.com

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