Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Our trip has resumed!

Our trip around the world took a significant break but we are back and ready to resume our virtual travels with a stop in Uganda!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

St. Kitts & Nevis

St. Kitts & Nevis

Our St. Kitts & Nevis Meal

We started our dinner with a salad with a dressing with a Caribbean flair.

Honey-Lime Dressing

Grey Poupon dijon mustard - 1/3 cup
Honey - 1/3 cup
Sugar - 1 1/2 tsp
Sesame oil - 1 tbsp
Apple cider vinegar - 1 1/2 tsp
juice and zest of 1 lime

Shake all together in a jar. 

 Marinated Grilled Chicken

3/4 cup vegetable oil
Juice of 3 limes
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1½ tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. Fiery Scotch Bonnet Hot Sauce (didn't have - replaced with Saracha/Rooster sauce)
2 tsp. oregano
1½ tbs. cilantro
3 pounds boneless chicken breast (used boneless, skinless thighs)

Cooking Method:

Combine the oil, juice, and seasonings.  Place the chicken in a zip top gallon bag and pour the marinade over the chicken.  Marinate in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours.  Grill chicken until done.

 Rice and Peas

4 cups cooked rice
1 cup coconut milk
4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 cup cooked kidney beans

Cook garlic in a small amount of oil for 30 seconds. Add coconut milk, thyme and beans and cook for 10+ minutes or until coconut milk is reduced by half. Remove thyme sprigs. Add rice and stir gently until heated through.

Sweet Potato Pudding
The highlight of dinner was this sweet potato pudding served with vanilla ice cream. Amazing. 

    * 4 cups of sweet potatoes
    * 1 tablespoon lime juice
    * 2.5 tablespoons dark rum
    * 3/4 cup sugar
    * 2 eggs
    * 2 tablespoons Earth Balance/butter
    * 1/2 cup coconut milk (canned)
    * grated rind of lime
    * 1/4 teaspoon salt
    * 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    * 1/2 teaspoon powdered cinnamon
    * 1 tablespoon raisins

Mash potatoes in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add sugar gradually and eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in butter and coconut milk. Mix in additional ingredients. Scoop in to a greased baking dish and bake at 350 for 60+ minutes or until a knife inserted comes out mostly clean. 

Next up... Vatican City!



Large flag with markers by William. Smaller flag made in Paint by Zachary.

  Icelandic Stories

We read "The Seal Woman" from "Through the Grapevine" - a great collection of world tales.

Sweet story with real photographs of puffins and their young on an island off of Iceland.

 Our Iceland Dinner

 Our Icelandic dinner consisted of fiskibollur (fish balls), red potatoes and salad. We had plans to make lace like Icelandic flat breads but the 100+ degree temps and our overworked and underworking A/C made for a minimal dinner experience. 

This picture is so entirely unappetizing! Ew.

Fiskibollur - Traditional Icelandic fish balls

Fish balls are one of the many ways in which Icelanders like to cook fish, and the recipes are numerous. When I was little I loved to eat fish-balls in pink sauce (see recipe below), mostly because of the colour of the sauce!
1 large fillet white fish (cod, haddock or saithe are traditional), skinned and de-boned
1 medium onion 150 ml. flour
50 ml. potato flour 1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs as needed milk

Finely chop or grind the fish fillet and onion. Mix together in a bowl (or just throw both ingredients into a food processor and let it do the work). Add the dry ingredients, mixing well. Add the eggs and then the milk (the fish-dough should be just thick enough to stick together when you form it into balls). Form small balls with two tablespoons or use your hands. Fry in oil or butter over low heat, until done. Serve with fresh salad and boiled potatoes. Ketchup also goes well with fish-balls.
-If you must have some sauce on your fish-balls, serve with melted butter, brown gravy or cocktail sauce,  or make pink sauce.

The family liked these. I wasn't a big fan, although it was fun to say we were eating 'fish balls' for dinner!

Jo's Icelandic Recipes http://www.isholf.is/gullis/jo/index.htm was a wealth of Iceland information!


Tuesday, September 21, 2010


William insisted on doing the Portugal page all on his own!

Caldo Verde (Portuguese Green Soup)

The kids liked it better blended but Carl and I enjoyed it as is.
14 ounces linguica sausage, cubed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 red onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
5 medium-large potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
2 quarts chicken broth
1 large bunch kale, rinsed, stemmed and julienned
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
 Brown linguica in a large, heavy bottom stock pot until just browned on the edges (5-7 minutes). Remove linguica from the pot and keep warm.
Add 1 tablespoon olive oil, onions and garlic and cook for 5-7 minutes until onions are translucent. Add potatoes and cook for 3-5 minutes more.
Add broth and bring to a rolling boil. Cook until potatoes are soft. Use an immersion blender to mash up most of the potatoes in to the broth, leaving some chunks. 
Add kale and linguica and cook until the kale is soft and bring green.

Serve with Broa (Portuguese cornbread). Recipe here.
Our Broa was very flat but still good. I am not sure what we did wrong. It doubled nicely but then the second rise it spread out vs. up.

Coming up next.... ICELAND!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Our visit to Poland!

The flag of Poland made out of Legos.

A Polish Tale
We read "The Jester's Last Trick" from "Through the Grapevine".

Polish Festival
Faworki and Pączki
What were the chances that the week we randomly selected Poland there would be a Polish festival just 15 miles away? We watched Polish dancers, listened to music and tasted some food. The kielbasa sandwich with sauerkraut was a hit. We also braved a couple of bites of dairy in some desserts.

Our Polish Sunday Monday Dinner

After the picture (Tofutti) sour cream was added to the soup. Very strange color!

The butcher at the Polish Festival was selling these packets of instant red borsch. . 
The soup was not a hit. It was quite startlingly red and a strange sort of sweet. It definitely tasted of beets. We like fresh beets and roasted beets but beet soup wasn't really our thing.

Kotlet schabowy - Pork Cutlets
  • 4 boneless center-cut pork chops or 1-pound pork tenderloin
  • Salt and black pepper
  • All-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg beaten with 1 teaspoon water
  • Bread crumbs or panko crumbs
  • Vegetable shortening or canola oil


  1. If using chops, trim off fat and gristle. If using tenderloin, trim off fat, remove silver skin and cut into 4 equal pieces. Pound pork between two pieces of plastic wrap to 1/4-inch thickness. Season both sides with salt and pepper.

  2. Dredge in flour, then egg, then bread or panko crumbs. Allow cutlets to dry for 10 minutes before frying.

  3. Heat shortening or oil to a depth of 1 inch in a large skillet. Fry one at a time by placing cutlets top side down into the pan. Fry 5 to 7 minutes per side until golden. Place on a heatproof plate in a warm oven (about 200 degrees) covered with foil and repeat with remaining cutlets. Alternatively, use two skillets to speed the process.
Original recipe - http://easteuropeanfood.about.com/od/polishmaincourses/r/porkcutlets.htm

My notes: I used panko crumbs and canola oil. The cutlets cooked much faster than the recipe suggested. They were a hit with the family but not a method I would use to make again any time soon because of the frying.

Chłopski Posiłek (Peasants' Bacon and Cabbage)
Chlopski is the Polish word for peasant, and literally translated this dish is called 'Peasants' Meal'. It's a dish which is most popular in the provinces like Lubuskie, in the far west of Poland.

1 medium green cabbage, coarsely chopped
6 slices fatty bacon, diced (is fatty bacon different than regular bacon?)
1 medium onion, chopped (used red onion)
1 large leek, chopped (omitted)
1/4  cup water
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 lb. Polish sausage cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 teaspoons salt and pepper
Cook bacon in a large skillet until crisp; remove bacon, reserving drippings in skillet. Crumble bacon, and set aside. Add all other ingredients except sausage to dripping; cover and cook 10 minutes over medium heat, turning cabbage once. Add sausage; cover and cook 5 minutes or until sausage is heated. Transfer to serving dish with a slotted spoon; sprinkle with bacon.
Makes 4 servings. Original recipe - http://www.krykiet.com/polish_food.htm

Notes: Maybe my "medium cabbage" was small? The ratio of cabbage to sausage really favored the sausage. I drained all but a tablespoon or two of the bacon fat and the dish still seemed plenty 'slick'. The kids loved the sausage and the bacon but didn't love the cabbage. Husband said it was edible. I liked it although I gave away most of my sausage pieces to the carnivores at the table.

Up next... PORTUGAL! 

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Paraguay: Bori Bori

Paraguayan Flags

Today we wrapped up our exploration of Paraguay with Bori Bori (Paraguayan Dumpling Soup). Paraguayan recipes seem to be heavy on the dairy which is a challenge with 3/4 of our family dairy free. Paraguay also has wonderful sounding cornbread-corn pudding type concoctions but once again they looked difficult to make dairy-free so we skipped them. The kids really enjoyed shaping the dumplings and throwing them in the soup.

Bori Bori - Paraguayan Dumpling Soup

I really need to put down my cell phone and break out a real camera.

Parmesan Dumplings
1/3 cup white or yellow cornmeal
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese (I used 2 tablespoons of flax meal to add some fat and stickiness)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 tbsp minced scallions, white portion only
1 tbsp canola oil

Beef Soup
2 tbsp canola oil or bacon fat
1 lb boneless beef shank (I used a cheap beef steak that was on sale)
Salt as needed
Freshly ground black pepper as needed
8 cups Chicken Broth, plus as needed
1-1/2 cups minced onion (I used 1 medium red onion)
3/4 cup small-dice carrot
3/4 cup small-dice celery
2 tsp minced garlic
1 bay leaf
1 whole clove (I didn't have any whole cloves so I used a tiny sprinkle of ground cloves)
2 or 3 crushed saffron threads (optional) - I had them so I included them
3 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (omitted)
Taking the job of beating eggs for the dumplings very seriously.

1. Make the dumplings: Combine the cornmeal, Parmesan, flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, egg, scallions, and oil in a mixing bowl. Cover the batter and let it rest at least 45 minutes and up to 3 hours before shaping and cooking the dumplings (see step 6).

1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Season the beef shank with salt and pepper and add it to the hot oil. Sear the beef on all sides, turning as necessary, until browned, 7 to 8 minutes.

3. Add the chicken broth and simmer over low heat until the beef is tender, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove the beef to a plate and let cool. Strain the broth through a fine sieve and reserve.

4. Return the soup pot to medium-high heat. Add the remaining oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic and sauté, stirring frequently, until the onion is tender and translucent, 8 to 10 minutes.

5. Add the strained broth to the soup pot along with additional chicken broth, if needed, to make 8 cups. Bring the broth to a simmer and add the bay leaf, clove, and saffron threads, if using. Simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and clove and discard.

6. Trim the cooled beef and cut it into medium dice. Return the beef to the soup. To form the dumplings, pinch off small pieces of dough (about 1 teaspoon) and roll them into balls. Add the dumplings to the soup and simmer until the dumplings are cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Stir in the parsley, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately in warmed soup bowls sprinkled with Parmesan cheese.

First taste. He liked the dumplings and then was done with it.

Yum?  He ate some but wasn't a fan of the onions.

Come up next... POLAND!

Monday, September 6, 2010


We watched a video of Paraguay - listening to the language and observing the images. We checked out a library book about Paraguay and practiced using the index to find facts to begin to fill out our country summary sheet.

We read through a variety of websites, looking for information about food and culture. We decided to try a Paraguayan version of the South American food empanadas and a dumpling soup called Bori Bori. The Bori Bori will hopefully make it to our table later this week. Here is our cheater version of Paraguayan empanadas.

Paraguayan Empanadas

note: Traditional Paraguayan beef empanadas usually include chopped hard boiled egg but for allergy reasons we limit our egg consumption. There were also many wonderful looking empanada dough recipes but dairy-free dough is really tricky so we made our empanadas with store bought pie crust (again for allergy reasons).

1/2 pound ground beef
3 tablespoons minced red onion
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
greens of one green onion
1 pkg store bought piece crust (enough for 2 crusts)
flour to dust work surface

preheat oven to 350
brown beef with red onion
drain excess fat
add cumin, paprika, parsley, green onion and salt & pepper to taste
let meat mix cool
flour work surface and use a cookie/biscuit cutter to cut circles approximately 3-4 inches in diameter, rolling excess dough together to get as many circles as possible
scoop about 1.5 tablespoons meat on to circle
fol in half, wet one edge and crimp with fork
lightly oil cookie sheet, place empanadas on cookie sheet and brush lightly with oil
bake until slightly golden brown, approximately 25 minutes

Kids - loved them
The Dad - thought they were ok but "bland"
Mom - I wasn't a huge fan of the pie dough - it was a little sweet which was disconcerting