Posts Tagged With: military

Flags of the World – Red and White

How many times has this happened to you? You’ve been scrupulously observing quarantine regulations. But you’re finding abiding them harder and harder to take. You find yourself developing a serious case of cabin fever. Finally, you can stand it no longer, so you rush outside. But before you know it, you’ve somehow organized a massive military uprising. Your forces, armed men and women who were drawn to you by your animal magnetism, have conquered a large part of a large country.

You find yourself filled with rebellion remorse. You try to give back your conquered lands, but the brave lads and lasses who fought for you won’t have any of that. “Go back to school,” you say to them. They say, “We missed our deadlines for turning in our essays. No teacher is going to accept the excuse ‘I couldn’t get term paper done as I was participating in a rebellion. ‘Begone,” the teacher will say, ‘like I haven’t heard that one.’ So, we will all get Fs. Our GPAs will plummet. We’ll lose our scholarships. We’ll have to drop out of university. But we won’t be able to get a job anywhere because taking part in bloody insurrection is such a resume stain.”

So, there you have it. You’re stuck with your new country. But won’t the old country that still exists be angry at you? You betcha! Won’t they be chomping at the bit to reconquer their lost lands? Absolutely. Can they do it? No, you inadvertently overpowered their armed forces earlier. Remember? What happens if they ally with some powerful nation and attack you?

That is the nightmare scenario. The only way to stop this international coalition from forming against you is to fool the world into thinking your country isn’t a new, that it’s really part of an old and peaceful nation. How do we do this?

Simple, pick a flag that looks like the one from another country. How do I do that?

May I suggest limiting the colors of your new flag to red and white? There are simply scads of countries that use only red and white in their banners. Look at the Polish flag.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poland is at peace with everyone. Adopt this flag and the foreign armies will think you’re at peace with everyone. If you don’t want to use the Polish flag, possibly for copyright reasons, you flip it on its side, like this. And add a little cross and you get . . . Malta.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Malta is a tiny and peaceful land. But choices for your flag still abound. Remove the cross and rotate the flag one more time and you get . . .  Monaco’s and Indonesia’s flags.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monaco is far too tiny to invade anyone and Indonesia hasn’t tried anything like that decades. And now, if you still want a flag that’s guaranteed to confuse your fledgling nation’s with those of more-established countries but is a little bit more stylish, may I suggest that your peruse the following red-and-white flags.

 

 

You don’t even have to draw your flagian, not really a word, from a real country’s banner. Look at the Swiss and Red Cross flags.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They’re almost the same flag! One of the two entities just switched colors with the other. Is this okay? And if you stare at the Swiss flag long enough will you see the Red Cross flag and vice versa? Something to think about.

Other countries have red-and-white flags, but didn’t make the cut for displaying their flags.  Anyway, honorable mention goes to:  Denmark, Georgia, and Japan.

So now you have many, many red-and-white flags to choose from. You new nation needn’t fear invasion, secure in the knowledge that the rest of the world will confuse your country with another. And that’s a good feeling.

 

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

Sweet and Sour Shrimp

Thai Entree

SWEET AND SOUR SHRIMP

INGREDIENTS – SAUCE

3 garlic cloves
1 small onion
2 tomatoes
1 tablespoon corn starch
2½ tablespoons water
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (1 cup more later)
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon fish sauce or Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce or ¼ teaspoon cayenne
1 cup vegetable oil or enough to cover shrimp

INGREDIENTS – SHRIMP

1 egg
⅔ cup fine bread crumbs
1 pound shrimp (24-to-32 count), peeled and deveined
1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Serves 4. Takes 40 minutes.

PREPARATION – SAUCE

Mince garlic cloves, onions, and tomatoes. Add corn starch and water to cup. Mix with fork until well blended. Add garlic, onion, and 2 tablespoons vegetable oil to pain. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Add tomato, sugar, fish sauce, and white wine vinegar. Bring to boil. Stir frequently. Reduce heat to low-medium and simmer for 10 minutes or until sauce reduces by one-fourth. Add corn starch/water and Sriracha sauce. Mix with whisk or fork until well blended. Remove sauce and set aside.

PREPARATION – SHRIMP

Add egg to small bowl. Beat egg with whisk or fork. Add bread crumbs to medium bowl. Dip shrimp in egg. Dredge shrimp through breadcrumbs. Repeat for all shrimp. Add 1 cup oil to pan. Heat oil using medium heat. Oil is ready, when a bread crumb will dance in the oil. Add shrimp. Deep fry at medium heat for 4 minutes or until shrimps are golden brown.

Add sesame seeds to pan. Toast sesame seeds on medium heat for 4 minutes or until they start to brown. Ladle sauce over shrimp. Garnish with sesame seeds. Goes well with rice.

TIDBITS

1) Sweet and sour shrimp is one of the world’s tastiest dishes.

2) If you are served this in America, you are a valued guest indeed. If your boss invites over and cooks sweet and sour shrimp for you.

3) However, If you’re served this in Thailand, you might or might not be asked to formally unite your family and their family in a marriage alliance. That’s how tasty this entree is.

4) Of course, people and nations change their outlooks all the time. Nowadays, a repast featuring this shrimp might just mean, “Wow, you are the best folks we’ve ever met. We’ll buy the neighboring house for you so we can all play bridge on Fridays and race elephants on Sunday.”

5) Then again, it might mean that marriage pact. In this case, your family and theirs will naturally try forming a new ruling dynasty.

6) Are you ready to rule Thailand?

7) Think it over carefully. Thailand already has a king and a military that is tied in closely with the monarchy. You will have to defeat them.

8) This means overcoming the King’s hundreds of thousands of supporters.

9) You and your Thai family allies will number ten to hundreds, depending whether on not you count all those in-laws that you don’t really like.

10) You will have to count heavily on the element of surprise.

11) All in all, it seems a rather risky endeavor just for the sake of one meal, no matter how tasty.

12) This is why I’ve written this recipe for you.

13) For serving sweet and sour shrimp in America simply means, “You seem nice. Enjoy my hospitality.”

14) In Britain, it means, “What ho, you’re a splendid sort.”

15) This is why a million Thai tourists travel the US and the UK. It’s just so relaxing to eat your food without the worry of fomenting revolution or making your host thinking you’re gauche in some other way.

16) As Sigmund Freud once said, “Sometimes sweet and sour shrimp is just sweet and sour shrimp.”

17) I know, I know, many people thought he said a “banana” instead of “sweet and sour shrimp,” but that is just a typo. An extraordinary typo, yes, but still a typo.

18) It’s a lot to take in. May I suggest reading What to Serve If You Don’t Want to Start Wars by Raymond Burr Ito.

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.

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

Codfish Cakes

British Entree

CODFISH CAKES

INGREDIENTSCodfishCakes-

1 pound cod fillets
2 large potatoes
½ teaspoon salt
1½ tablespoons butter
1 small egg
1½ tablespoons minced onion
1 teaspoon parsley
⅛ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon tarragon
1 large egg
¼ cup vegetable oil
½ cup breadcrumbs

Makes 6 codfish cakes. Takes 2¼ hours, more if you spill the bowl with beaten egg on yourself and you need to change clothes and beat another egg.

PREPARATION

Cut cod into 1″ squares. Peel potatoes and cut them into fourths. Add potato and salt to large pot. Add enough water to cover. Bring to boil using high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes or until potato fourths are almost tender. Drain water. Mash potato fourths with potato masher or fork. Remove from heat.

Add cod to pan and cover with water. Simmer on low heat for 5-to-10 minutes or until cod becomes soft and begins to flake. Stir frequently. Drain water.

While cod simmers, beat small egg. Add cod, potato, butter, beaten small egg, onion, parsley, pepper, and tarragon to large mixing bowl. Mix with hands until well blended. Form mixture into 6 round, flat cakes.

Add large egg to second mixing bowl. Beat with whisk. Add breadcrumbs to plate. Dredge codfish cakes through breadcrumbs until completely coated. Dip coated codfish cakes into beaten egg. Refrigerate codfish cakes for 45 minutes or until they are firm.

Add oil to pan. Heat on medium-high heat until a little breadcrumb starts to dance in the oil. Add as many codfish cakes as possible to pan. (You might need to cook the cakes in batches.) Sauté cakes for 3-to-5 minutes on each side or until golden brown. (The time needed to cook the codfish cakes tends to go down with successive batch.) Serve via catapult or, more traditionally, on a plate. Goes well with tartar sauce.
TIDBITS

1) The codpiece was a bag, or piece of clothing, that was sown into men’s pants. Men kept their lunch in it. Most of the time, the lunch was the ever popular cod. Hence, the codpiece.

2) Pause and reflect how amazing that tidbit 1) is true. I thought I had made something up but no, it’s all factual.

3) Renaissance women, having noses, objected to the foul smell emanating from their husbands’ fish-laden groins. It got so bad, that women went on a sex strike in 1454. This was a great opportunity for the porn industry to start. However, the lack of hand-held cameras, the internet with its downloading capabilities, and DVD daunted even the most entrepid entrepreneurs.

4) The DVD-deprived House of York favored giving into their spouses’s demands. The House of Not York favored keeping their fish lunch near their manhood. Tempers rose. Thing were said and soon civil war broke out between the two houses. From 1455 to 1485. Biff! Biff!

6) Thank goodness, that bloody civil war is over. The House of Not York won. Men everywhere cheered.

8) Not so, with their wives. Fishy groins still stank. Intimacy between spouses remained intermittent.

9) However, the husbands still wanted their bed dancing. This need proved to be an opening for enterprising prostitutes. And so, prostitution became a thriving industry along with chocolate chip cookies. Such cookies placed on the bordellos’s window sills lured customers in again and again. Kinda like S&H Green StampsTM during the 1950s and 1960s or even like frequent-flier miles now.

11) How did these horizontal entrepreneurs stand the codfish stench of their customers? By smoking tobacco. Smoking deadens the sense of smell.

12) The wives soon found out this secret and took up smoking as well. Men came back to their wives. Relations were resumed. Babies were born. The population soared. The supply of jobs didn’t. Men became restless and rioted. Monarchs fear revolutions. Monarchs feared losing their heads.

13) Kings everywhere enrolled angry, aimless youth into their military. Armies expanded. So, did the opportunities for conflict. Soon, vast armies of armed, cod-stuffing youths fought each other all over Europeans for centuries.

14) Refrigeration came to America in 1911. American men no longer needed to keep cod in their shorts. Men and women no longer need to deaden their noses with cigarettes. People could smell flowers again. Gardening became America’s national pastime. All was well in the USA.

15) Tragically, refrigeration did not come to Europe until 1915, too late to stop World War I. Nasally impaired leaders all over the continents sent an entire generation to its doom. If only they had been able to stop and smell the roses.

16) Thanks to refrigeration and the calming ability to smell roses there has not another major conflict to speak off aside from the Unpleasantness of 1939-1945 and a few other spats. Yay.

– 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: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Caesar’s Salad

Mexican Entree

CAESAR’S SALAD

INGREDIENTSCaesarsSalad-

1 head romaine lettuce
4 bread slices
2 garlic cloves
1/4 cup olive oil (1 tablespoon more later)
2 ounces anchovies, cut in half (optional)

1 egg
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

PREPARATION

Separate romaine lettuce into leaves. Tear leaves into 1″ squares. Remove crusts from bread slices. Cut bread into ½” cubes. Cut one garlic clove into four pieces and rub them along the salad bowl. Discard. (Oh no, no, discard the garlic pieces, not the salad bowl. Goodness, careful sentence structure matters.)

Add the other garlic clove and 1/4 cup olive oil to pan. Sauté at low-medium heat for 5 minutes or 300 seconds. Discard garlic clove. (It’s a bad day to be garlic.) Add bread cubes to pan. Sauté at medium heat for 5 minutes or until bread cubes are crisp on all sides. Stir frequently. Remove crisp bread crumbs or croutons and place them on paper towels to drain.

Add romaine squares and croutons to salad bowl. (Add optional anchovies here.)

Add egg, Dijon mustard, pepper, salt, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, olive oil, and red wine vinegar to blender. Use mix or middle setting to blend ingredients for 30 seconds. Pour this dressing into salad bowl. Lightly toss salad. Sprinkle salad with Parmesan cheese.

Note, pregnant women and small children should not eat raw eggs.

TIDBITS

1) Anchovies are a happening item. Italian prostitutes of the 18th century used anchovies when making their famous “spaghetti alla puttanesca” for their customers.

2) The Romans used anchovy entrails to make an aphrodisiac, to reduce ulcers, to cure dysentery, or to season their food.

3) So if you were a Roman woman and a man had you over for dinner and he served anchovy sauce, you might want to wonder about him.

4) On the other hand, we could dramatically cut the cost of health care by requiring all pizzas to come with anchovies. We wouldn’t need hospital or medical insurance, just a large anchovy with extra cheese.

5) And the aphrodisiacal–whoa spell check is okay with that–qualities of anchovy pizzas would mean we wouldn’t have to see those ViagraTM ads on T.V. anymore.

6) But PlayboyTM would sport ads about anchovies all the time.

7) The entire economy would be directed to processing anchovies.

8) Military spending would fall to zero.

9) Our anchovy-driven sexual frenzies would leave us wide open to conquest by our enemies.

10) But anchovies also contain a toxin called domoic acid whichcan drive a seagull insane if ingested in too large a quantity.

11) Which is why the United States Army has warehouses full of anchovies. Within 15 minutes of an enemy invasion, the roofs of all these warehouses retract to reveal millions of vats just brimming with anchovies.

12) America’s heroic seagulls would then gorge themselves on their favorite food, became crazy and attack the invaders, just like in Alfred Hitchcock’s, The Birds.

13) America cannot be conquered.

14) But then any country with sufficient anchovies and pelican couldn’t be conquered.

15) Countries would have an incentive to stockpile these items.

16) I fear an anchovy-and-pelican race between nations.

17) But if worse comes to worse, we will blast the Barney-the-Dinosaur song at our enemies until they cry uncle.

18) Let us banish this frightening scenario by sipping on a wonderful, ice cold root beer. Ah, life is good again.

19) Caesar’s salad, anyone?

– 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: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Almond Pork Stir Fry

Chinese Entree

ALMOND PORK STIR FRY

INGREDIENTSAlmondChicken-

1 pound pork loins
½ red onion
2 scallions
½ cup blanched, silvered almonds
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 ½ tablespoons chicken stock
1 tablespoon sherry
1 teaspoon sugar
1 pound bean sprouts
1 teaspoon Chinese five spices
1/2 tablespoon freshly grated ginger

PREPARATION

Cut pork into ½” cubes. Dice red onion and scallions. Rinse bean sprouts. Add almond, red onion, scallion, and soy sauce to wok or pan. Sauté on medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently.

Add pork, chicken stock, sherry, sugar, bean sprouts, Chinese five spices, and ginger to pan. Cook for 5 minutes on medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until pork is no longer pink inside. (X-ray vision would be useful here. If you aren’t a super hero, it’s okay to slice open a pork cube and look.)

TIDBITS

1) In 1764, Spain worried about Russian encroachment on the west coast of America planted almond trees along El Camino Real (The Royal Road) from San Diego to San Francisco.

2) These trees did not significantly deter the Russian military which was generally equipped with ships, horses, cannon, and muskets.

3) The Spanish then tried planting all manner of cacti in Arizona. This failed as well. The Russians weren’t interested in Arizona and the cacti proved remarkably vulnerable to flanking maneuvers.

4) In 1769, the governor of California, Don Antonio Pico de Gallo, came up with the happy idea of building missions along El Camino and staffing them with priests and soldiers. The Russians saw that the price of conquering the Golden State would be too high and left.

5) President Clinton ate almonds at both his inaugurations. Some say he did this to send a message to the Russians, but it is more likely he just like to eat them.

6) Eat the almonds, not the Russians, for goodness sake.

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

Egg Foo Young

Chinese Entree

EGG FOO YOUNG

INGREDIENTS 

VEGGIE-CHICKEN MIX

1/2 chicken breast
1 medium white onion
2 stalks green onions
1 stalk celery
1 garlic clove
1 cup bean sprouts
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper

2 tablespoons peanut oil
8 eggs (2 at a time)

no-stick spray

SAUCE

4 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon dry sherry
1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons cornstarch

PREPARATION

Dice chicken breast, white onion, green onion, celery, and garlic clove. Put sesame oil in frying pan or skillet. Add onion, green onion, celery, clove, and sprouts. Heat on medium for about 5 minutes or until veggies are tender. Stir frequently.

Add chicken breast, cornstarch, soy sauce, salt, and white pepper. Cook for about 3 minutes on medium or until chicken bits have all changed color. Remove veggie-chicken mixture from frying pan and set aside.

Beat eggs. (This should be easy as your grasp of mixed-martial arts exceeds that of the genial egg.) Spray pan with no-stick spray. Heat peanut oil on medium. Add 2 eggs and cook on medium until eggs begin to set. Flip over egg patty. (You might want to use two spatulas. I wonder if any chefs use crossed spatulas as their coats of arms.) Or could use a spatula to cut the big patty into four manageable patties each time you add a layer of eggs.

Add about 1/3 of the veggie-chicken mix to the top of the patty. Add 2 more eggs and cook on medium until eggs on top begin to set. Flip over the whole patty. You should now have 2 layers of eggs and one mix. Repeat this step 2 more times until you have 4 layers of eggs and 3 of the mix. Watch the egg layer each time you flip the whole patty. Be careful that they don’t burn. Lower the heat, if at any time, the egg layer browns.

Remove the patty, or patties, from the pan and set on serving plate.

SAUCE

Put soy sauce, dry sherry, and water in frying pan. Bring to boil then immediately turn off heat. Add cornstarch and mix until sauce thickens. The sauce add flavor, texture, and enhances the appearance of this entree.

(This is especially true if you went the “one big patty” route and it fell apart during cooking. Refrain from cussing in Swahili. Simply cover the broken patty completely with sauce. Nobody will ever know there’s a break in the patty after you’ve divided the patty into two, three, or four pieces.)

Just smile and serve.

TIDBITS

1) Untying knots becomes easier when you sprinkle it with cornstarch.

2) While Alexander the Great was busy conquering the Persian empire he came across a two ropes tied together at Gordian. A prophet told him if could separate the ropes he would win many victories. People pooh poohed the idea that anyone could untie the intricate knot, but Alexander simply slashed the knot into two with one mighty sweep of his sword. To this day, the Gordian knot is a metaphor for not having cornstarch on ones person.

3) Alexander did indeed conquer quite a few exotic lands, even unto India. But he never quite reached China.

4) So, the Great one never got to taste egg foo young.

5) Did China have egg foo young in the time of Alexander the Great, some 2,300 years ago? Would he have like it?

6) We just don’t know. There just weren’t any many alternative military cuisinal historians around.

7)Is “cuisinal” even a word?

4) See above for 4).

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

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