Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Carol Taylor’s – Culinary A – Z Rewind – Almond Milk, Arrowroot, Aubergines dip #Thai and Avocado Guacamole.


Welcome to a repeat of the series from Carol Taylor, the wonderful Culinary A – Z and a reminder, not only of the amazing variety of food we have available to us today from around the world, but delicious recipes to showcase them. Carol also introduces to cooking methods and kitchen equipment that assist in creating meals for all occasions.

Hello and today is the first post in the repeat of my culinary journey through the alphabet.  

The foods or recipes which I choose will all be made from scratch..from foods readily available and if they are not I will suggest substitutes…Some of the foods or recipes will also be alternatives to some standard foods either because it is what I prefer to use or to offer you a healthier option.

Today I have chosen to start with Almond Milk…

Why? Well, I know many people whether it is choice or because of health reasons are looking for alternatives to cows milk.

Before you make the Almond milk you must ensure that you do the following:

Very Important: First sprout the almonds to get rid of the enzyme inhibitors that impede digestion. To do this simply soak the almonds overnight in water, then in the morning let them dry on a plate.

When the almonds are dry you are ready to use them to make your almond milk…

Almond Milk.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups raw sprouted almonds
  • 1 cup pitted dates (use more or less to control desired sweetness)
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1½ cup of raw coconut water

Let’s Cook!

  1. Blend all ingredients in a vita-mix or blender until thick and creamy.
  2. Line a fine strainer with a “nut milk” bag or cheesecloth and strain.
  3. Put your Almond milk in the refrigerator for several hours to cool and enjoy.

Arrowroot powder …is fast gaining in popularity in the western world as people are looking for substitutes and alternatives to cornstarch either because they have corn allergies/sensitivities or they want to avoid anything GMO and laden with pesticides.

A starchy substance which is extracted from the root of a tropical plant known as Maranta arundinacea which is cultivated to produce Arrowroot it is also known as Prayer Plant due to the way the leaves close at night they also when harvested look very similar to cassava or underground tubers.

Arrowroot, however, does not go through the same extraction process as cornflour by using high heat or harsh chemicals it is extracted using simpler traditional methods.

It is simply a white, powdery starch that is naturally gluten and grain-free. I used to use cornflour which has a slight taste and a cloudy appearance Arrowroot, on the other hand, is much better as it has no taste and leaves food glossy and clear…It is a great thickener and can easily replace cornstarch.

Arrowroot powder is also great mixed with dried herbs and used to coat chicken or fish before frying and produces lovely crisp and crunchy food.

Asparagus Pea or wing bean as I call them are pretty beans with four winged edges very unusual looking beans.

Winged beans are nutrient-rich and all parts of the plant are edible. Leaves can be eaten like spinach, flowers can be used in salads, the tubers can be eaten raw or cooked and the seeds used in similar ways to the soya bean.

Sliced and cooked with garlic, oyster sauce and a little magi (Thai) seasoning sauce they are delicious as a light meal with rice or as a side dish.

Simple and easy and quick to cook…

Aubergines nice just sliced, seasoned and put on an oiled baking sheet in a hot oven for 5-7 mins then brushed with a mixture of herbs of your choice and popped under the grill for 30 seconds. Serve immediately. Nice as an accompaniment to chicken or fish with a nice salad on a summers evening.

Fancy a quick dip for unexpected guests…

  • 2 aubergines
  • 100ml natural yoghurt
  • juice ½ lemon/lime
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 green chilli, chopped
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • Olive oil, to drizzle

Let’s Cook

  1. Char the aubergines over a flame or cook in the oven and remove the skin.
  2. Tip into a food processor with the yoghurt, lemon juice, garlic, chilli, coriander and olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Blend until smooth tip into a bowl, and drizzle with more olive oil.
  4. For a chunkier dip, the aubergine, garlic and chilli can be chopped by hand and mixed with the other ingredients.

Enjoy!

Aubergine dip the Thai way.

  • 1 medium eggplant
  • 2-4 chillies
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 med shallots
  • 1-2 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • Big handful coriander

Let’s Cook

  1. BBQ your eggplant, shallots, chilli and garlic the chilli and garlic will be done first, pop the chillies into a sealed plastic bag to cool it makes it easier to remove seeds and skin.
  2. When eggplant is soft then scoop out the flesh and add all the ingredients to your food processor or just a pestle and mortar like it is done here.
  3. Taste and adjust seasoning if required more fish sauce or lime juice.
  4. Serve with noodles or raw vegetables.

Lastly on my culinary trip through the letter A is the Avocado

Guacamole.

homemade guacamole

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 ripe tomato
  • 1 finely chopped shallot
  • 1 birds eye chilli finely chopped
  • 1 -3 tbsp fresh coriander
  • Lime Juice
  • Salt & Pepper for seasoning.

Let’s Cook!

  1. Peel and roughly chop the avocado stir in the chopped onion, chilli, tomatoes and the coriander.
  2. Season the guacamole to taste with salt, black pepper, and a generous squeeze of lime juice.
  3. Cover bowl with clingfilm and chill before serving.

Thank you for reading I hope you have enjoyed this little trip through the Culinary alphabet…Until next time when it will be the letter B.

About Carol Taylor

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetables ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use have to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: Amazon US

Connect to Carol – Blog: Carol Cooks 2 – Twitter: @CarolCooksTwo – Facebook: Carol Taylor

 

My thanks to Carol for creating this wonderful series and we hope that you have enjoyed. As always we are delighted to receive your feedback and if you could share that would be great.. thanks Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Health Column – Food Therapy Rewind – Pumpkin Seeds Nutrient Packed snack on the go


There are certain foods that bring more than taste to your diet, rich in nutrients and energy they are worth including in your weekly shopping.

Food therapy is a broad term for the benefits to the body of a healthy, varied and nutritional diet of fresh foods.

Most of us walk through the fresh produce departments of our supermarkets without really paying much attention to the individual fruits and vegetables. This is a great pity because the vast majority of these foods have been cultivated for thousands of years, not only for their nutritional value but also for their medicinal properties. If you eat a healthy diet you are effectively practicing preventative medicine. A robust immune system, not only attacks external opportunistic pathogens, but also works to prevent rogue cells in the body from developing into serious disease.

NOTE If you are on any prescribed medication do not take yourself off it without consultation with your doctor. If you follow a healthy eating programme and lose weight and are exercising you may not need the same dose and with your doctor’s agreement you may be able to reduce or come off the medication all together.

This week we are going to be featuring pumpkin seeds which are not only delicious but contain some very important nutrients that make this a snack that every man should eat once or twice a day.

When I was researching my men’s health book I came across some interesting statistics with regard to the very common problem of an enlarged prostate. In fact if you live to the age of 90 – 9 out of 10 men will have the condition! Any man over the age of 50 who has a reduction in testosterone is likely to experience mild symptoms that are worth dealing with early.

Here is a link that you might find useful if you are a man in your 50s, or a partner of a man in his 50s, as I have found it is often the person closest to you who notices the changes to your body and behaviour. Enlarged Prostate

As with any alternative therapy it is not permitted to claim that it works unless there is official permission to do so. However, after 24 years of working in nutrition and herbal therapies I have certainly seen some benefits clearly in myself and those I have worked with.

This includes today’s featured food. Pumpkin Seeds will offer a great many benefits to the whole body but they may also have a therapeutic effect on an enlarged prostate.

Thankfully enlightened scientists are researching the properties and benefits of many of our foods and hopefully in the future their use will be considered as part of any treatment plan. And as I always say, 1000’s of years of natural medicine across the world cannot be all wrong! Certainly it is unlikely that eating pumpkin seeds regularly will do as much harm as perhaps taking long term medication.

But, if already taking a prescribed medicine for any condition do not suddenly stop without the knowledge of your doctor.

Pumpkin seeds.

When you look at a handful of pumpkin seeds it is very hard to imagine that each flat dark green ‘pepita’ is packed full of nutrients. Normally eaten roasted these nutty seeds contain protein, fibre, iron, copper, magnesium, manganese and phosphorus, all nutrients that provide essential ingredients for good health. They also contain trace amounts of calcium, potassium, zinc, selenium, folate and B3 as well as Linolenic acid a property that prevents hardening of the arteries.

They also contain the amino acids arginine and glutamic acid that are also included in the nutrients directory in the link beneath the post.

The therapeutic origins of Pumpkin Seeds.

As with many of our natural remedies, pumpkin and their seeds played a vital role in the diet and health of the American Indian. Not only were they used for male health but also for urinary tract infections and in China they are regarded as a remedy for depression probably due to the presence of good levels of tryptophan and B3.

As with the melon, cucumber and squash the pumpkin belongs to the gourd or Cucurbitaceae family but pumpkin seeds are the most adaptable for consumption in their own right.

Pumpkin seeds and Prostate health

The reputation enjoyed by pumpkin seeds may be thousands of years in the making but modern research is backing the long held health claims.

It is thought that the oil containing cucurbitacins in the seeds may reduce the hormonal changes from testosterone to dihydrotestosterone that damages and increases the number of prostate cells that results in an enlarged prostate. It is also thought that they may well reduce the risk of developing prostate cancer.

Zinc in the seeds is also an important mineral as it helps to maintain semen volume and health as well as adequate levels of testosterone necessary for a healthy sex drive. The prostate gland actually contains the highest concentration of zinc in the body and certainly foods containing zinc may relieve symptoms of an enlarged prostate.

Apart from its effect on the health of our arteries, it is thought that the Linolenic acid in pumpkin seeds may also improve urine flow among men with enlarged prostate glands.

The selenium in the seeds has many functions in the body but importantly in the case of the male reproductive system it is also believed to improve sperm motility and mobility. It is interesting that nearly 50% of a man’s selenium is found in his testes and it is lost through ejaculation in the semen. Selenium also may protect against enlargement of the prostate as well as reduce damage to the cells that might develop into prostate cancer.

As an antioxidant, selenium may prevent oxidative damage to fats, vitamins, hormones and enzymes involved in normal prostate functioning.

Bone Health

Zinc in the seeds is also an important mineral that promotes bone density an often overlooked factor as men get older. It is often assumed that it is post-menopausal women who are most at risk of hip fractures but in fact nearly a third of these fractures are suffered by men. Declining hormone levels effect men as they reach their fifties and sixties and osteoporosis of the hip and spine are becoming more common as our modern lifestyle results in nutritional deficiencies.

Cholesterol

Another side effect of modern life is the increasing levels of unhealthy oxidised LDL (low density lipoprotein) cholesterol in our bloodstream. Although 80% of our cholesterol is manufactured by our livers, if we consume a high sugar, processed food diet full of trans fats we end up with far more than our overworked systems can cope with and process. It then is subjected to free radical damage and forms plaque in the arteries, blocking them and resulting in high blood pressure and ultimately heart disease.

As in the herb Saw Palmetto, phytosterols in pumpkin seeds actively work to reduce the levels of unhealthy cholesterol in our blood stream and eating a handful every day is much healthier in my opinion than eating the very expensive and hydrogenated alternative spreads to butter currently touted in our supermarkets. This also applies to sesame seeds, which has the highest phytosterol content as well as unsalted pistachios and sunflower seeds.

Other health benefits

I consider pumpkin seeds to be a must for everyone’s shopping list due to the nutritional density supplied by just one handful.

In addition to prostate, bone and the health of our arteries, eating pumpkin seeds may well help reduce the inflammatory diseases such as arthritis. In recent studies it was shown that not only did pumpkin seeds work as well as some prescribed medication but it did not have the unwelcome side effects and long term potential to further damage the lining of the joints.

  • My advice to my male clients is to have a handful of pumpkin seeds everyday as a mid-morning snack.
  • They are also delicious sprinkled on salads
  •  Included in fresh baked bread.
  • A really tasty way for the whole family to enjoy the taste of pumpkin and other seeds is in the form of a butter. There are a number of recipes online but basically you toast the seeds for about 15 minutes in the oven on a baking sheet and then put into a food processor adding a little virgin oil or coconut oil to the mix to provide a smooth butter finish.

Delicious and good for you.

©sally cronin Just Food for Health 1998 – 2022

A little bit about me nutritionally. .

About Sally Cronin

I am a qualified nutritional therapist with twenty-four years experience working with clients in Ireland and the UK as well as being a health consultant on radio in Spain.

Although I write a lot of fiction, I actually wrote my first two books on health, the first one, Size Matters, a weight loss programme 20 years ago, based on my own weight loss of 154lbs. My first clinic was in Ireland, the Cronin Diet Advisory Centre and my second book, Just Food for Health was written as my client’s workbook. Since then I have written a men’s health manual, and anti-aging programme, articles for magazines, radio programmes and posts here on Smorgasbord.

You can buy my books from: Amazon US – and:Amazon UK – Follow me :Goodreads – Twitter: @sgc58 – Facebook: Sally Cronin – LinkedIn: Sally Cronin

 

As always I look forward to your comments and if you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask them.. thanks Sally.

 

 

Smorgasbord Health Column – Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiency with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Phosphorus – Dairy, Poultry, Pork, Nuts, Wholegrains


Welcome to the rewind of this series from 2019 where we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

We wanted to share with you what happens if your body is deprived of individual nutrients over an extended period of time.

In this series we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

Thankfully most of us eat reasonably well, with plenty of variety, but if you take a look at a week’s worth of meals, do you find that you are sticking to a handful of foods, all the time.

Variety is key to good health, to provide your body with as broad a spectrum of nutrients as possible that the body needs. Taking a supplement or relying on shakes and bars to provide your daily allowance of vitamins and nutrients is not in your body’s best interest. Giving it foods that the body can process and extract everything it needs is vital.

Over the next few months we are going to be working our way through the most essential of these nutrients and I will share the symptoms that you might experience if you are becoming deficient in the vitamin or mineral and list the foods where you can find the nutrient.

Carol Taylor is then going to provide you with some wonderful recipes that make best use of these foods… Cooked from Scratch.

Phosphorous is a mineral that you will not find in your multi-vitamin and mineral supplement because it is considered that we obtain sufficient through our diet.

Phosphorus and bone health

However there are some interesting facts about phosphorus that makes it worth taking a closer look at. Many women as they approach the menopause will begin to supplement with additional calcium to prevent bone loss and take up weight bearing exercise such as walking and yoga. However, very few women realise that phosphorus is also very important for bone health and without it calcium is less effective.

Clinical studies have shown that calcium supplementation without enough phosphorus may actually lead to bone mass reduction. Although most calcium supplements are combined with Vitamin D to assist absorption, trials have shown that with the addition of phosphorus bone fractures in high-risk patients was reduced by 43% within 18 months.

What is phosphorus?

Phosphorus is an essential mineral usually combined with oxygen as a phosphate. Most phosphate in the body is found in our bones. But, phosphate containing molecules, (phospholipids) are also important components of cell membranes and lipoprotein particles such as HDL (healthy cholesterol) and LDL (lousy cholesterol). A small amount of phosphate plays a role in many of our biochemical reactions including the production of our essential fuel ATP (adenosine triphosphate) and the formation of red blood cells.

What are the causes of a phosphorus deficiency?

Deficiency is rare in a person with a normal diet. Alcoholics however are at risk as are people who are constantly taking antacids because of the aluminium content in some brands.

Osteoporosis sufferers who are heavily supplementing with calcium are also at risk of deficiency and it is usually recommended that they take phosphorus at the same time.

The far bigger risk with phosphorus is the amount we are consuming in processed foods such as soft drinks. A diet high in phosphorus may decrease the absorption of other minerals such as iron, copper and zinc.

Phosphoric acid for example in soft drinks has been linked to kidney stones in some trials and certainly people with kidney disease should avoid taking in any food or drink that contains large amounts of phosphorous.

Some symptoms of a phosphorus deficiency

  1. General weakness and loss of appetite.
  2. Spikes in energy levels particularly associated with cravings for caffeine and sugar.
  3. Tingling or numbness in fingers and toes.
  4. Bone and joint pain.

What are the best food sources of phosphorus?

  • Sufficient phosphorus is found in a diet that includes plenty of protein rich foods such as turkey and other poultry and meats.
  • Dairy products are rich in the mineral and eating beans regularly will also provide good amounts.
  • Vegetarians need to include plenty of whole grains and nuts in their diet to ensure that they obtain sufficient phosphorus.

 

Time to hand you over to Carol Taylor who has been creating dishes that include ingredients that are healthy sources of phosphorous.

Today I will be giving you some recipes which contain Phosphorus…Sally has explained the importance of phosphorus in our bodies and I have tested some recipes which if you have a deficiency then these will help you ensure you are getting enough phosphorus in your diet.

Roasting or cooking with a dry heat preserves most of the phosphorus in foods.

I have chosen to use the two meats which have the highest amounts Pork tenderloin and chicken livers…

Pork Tenderloin with peppercorns.

Ingredients:

• 1lb Pork Tenderloin.
• ¼ cup maple syrup
• 3tbsp balsamic vinegar
• 2 tsp dijon mustard
• 2 tsp vegetable oil divided
• Salt and pepper to season meat
• 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
• 2/3 stems fresh peppercorns

Let’s Cook!

  1. Combine the maple syrup, balsamic in a small pan cook over a medium heat until the liquid reduces about 2/3 minutes remove from the heat and whisk in the Dijon mustard.
  2. Slice your pork into about 8 pieces then put between two layer of greaseproof paper and pound to flatten to about ¼ inch.
  3. Heat tsp of the oil in a non stick pan, add the garlic and stir then add your seasoned pork.
  4. Cook for a minute and a half and turn and cook the other side. Repeat with your remaining fillets.
  5. Return the cooked pork to the pan and add your sauce stir and heat for one minute.

Your pork is now ready to serve either with rice or potatoes and some steamed vegetables. I served mine with roasted fennel.

It is a dish which was quick to make and the sauce was nice although I didn’t think there was much sauce it actually was enough…

Spicy Chicken Livers.

This lovely spicy chicken liver dish is very easy and quick to make…..In Thai it translates to Pad Ped Kuang Nai Gai Tua Fuk Yaao … try saying that after a few vino’s.

This dish is a family favorite.even hubby eats it and he doesn’t really do spicy but I think his love of liver takes over …Although we prefer chicken liver to lambs or pigs liver is is softer and has a milder flavour.

Ingredients:

• 350 gm Chicken Livers
• 4 or 5 long green beans.
• Tsp Red curry paste….. depending on red curry paste you use you may need to add more…I use a locally made one which blows your head off …so only use a tsp and it is still hot!
• 1-2 tbsp Fish Sauce.
• 6/8 Lime leaves very finely shredded.
• 4 tbsp Coconut Milk.
• Small amount of coconut oil.

N.B You can use oil of your choice I just always cook with Coconut oil.

Let’s Cook!

  1. Clean and cut up chicken livers..I do bite size pieces.
  2. Cut up long beans into half-inch long pieces.
  3. Finely shred lime leaves…..I roll them and shred.
  4. Heat Pan over fairly high heat, add a small amount of oil, add chilli paste and 1 tbsp Fish sauce stir until paste is liquid, add finely sliced lime leaves and chicken livers , stir until just cooked.
  5. Add green beans and coconut milk and cook gently for 2/3 mins.
  6. Taste and add more fish sauce if required…I generally add about another half tbsp.

It is now ready to serve…Serve with rice and additional vegetables if desired.

This is quite a dry dish so can be served with a small bowl of miso soup with chopped spring onions if liked.

If you are vegetarian and have a phosphorus deficiency Whole grains and nuts are high in phosphorus therefore I would advise making a lovely wholegrain loaf with nuts or making a crumble topping. This crumble topping could be used to top fruit or yoghurt either as a dessert or breakfast. You can use any choice of nuts…

Crumble Topping.

Ingredients:

• 1 cup Pine Nuts
• ½ cup cashews
• ½ cup of pecans
• 1.5 cups of coconut either fresh shredded or desicatted…I used fresh toasted coconut
• 3 tbsp coconut oil
• 3 tbsp maple syrup
• 1 tsp cinnamon
• Pinch salt.

Method

  1. Blitz your nuts in short bursts I left mine smallish pieces a little smaller than I wanted so short sharp bursts or it may be too fine.
  2. Then add the cinnamon, salt , coconut oil and maple syrup and mix tocombine then spread on a greased tray and cook for about 20 mins on 180…
  3. Check a few times just to ensure they don’t burn and give a little stir halfway through cooking.
  4. Allow to cool or if you want a hot pudding then layer with fruit of your choice.

I had a few mangoes so cooked them down with a little raw sugar and a few cumin seeds.

I then layered the mango with the nut crumble… You could use any fruit apples, blackberries, raspberries even bananas if you sliced them and added some spices or maple syrup. Play with your flavours…

My thanks to Carol for these recipes that will bring Phosphorus into your diet deliciously…and all the great recipes in the series.

About your hosts…

About Sally Cronin

I am a qualified nutritional therapist with twenty-four years experience working with clients in Ireland and the UK as well as being a health consultant on radio in Spain.

Although I write a lot of fiction, I actually wrote my first two books on health, the first one, Size Matters, a weight loss programme 20 years ago, based on my own weight loss of 154lbs. My first clinic was in Ireland, the Cronin Diet Advisory Centre and my second book, Just Food for Health was written as my client’s workbook. Since then I have written a men’s health manual, and anti-aging programme, articles for magazines, radio programmes and posts here on Smorgasbord.

About Carol Taylor

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetables ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use have to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: Amazon US

Connect to Carol – Blog: Carol Cooks 2 – Twitter: @CarolCooksTwo – Facebook: Carol Taylor

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up – May 23rd -29th – Crows, Aretha Franklin, Chart Hits 1995, Curacao, Manganese, stories, reviews, health and humour


Welcome to the round up of posts on Smorgasbord that you might have missed this week.

I hope you are well and had a good week. It has been busy here as we continue the redecoration but the dining room is now completed and we will be moving all the furniture back in over the next couple of days. I will share some pictures next week of the before and after. Because of the comings and goings this week I did not have a chance to do the podcast but Tales from the Irish Garden will be back again next Sunday.  Instead a short story that I wrote recently as one of the new collection slowly being written and hopefully out later in the year.. It did appear earlier in the year on Allan Hudson’s blog.

Charlie Update

In the spring we rescued a crow who had probably been injured by a car and was unable to open his beak very far and appeared to have some brain damage. Whilst there might have been an option to put him to sleep humanely, we decided to see if we could rehabilitate him.  For six weeks he lived in a hutch David built and I hand fed him pureed chicken for the first few days which was messy but he seemed to get the idea. He then was able to move his beak sideways and moved on to bread and butter, tuna, enriched fat balls and other soft foods. He couldn’t fly and would fall over if he tried to walk but this too improved over the weeks until he began to flutter short distances.

He got used to drinking from the bird bath on the ground and even copied the starlings who use it as a bath several times a day.

Here he is enjoying his bread and butter

Eventually he was able to fly further and and seemed to regain his balance. He would sit and look up at the sky watching the many crows who fly around us from the neighbouring woods and he would try to launch himself up to join them. Eventually one day, he did and we didn’t see him for about a week, fearing the worst.

However, he did return and we know it is him because he still is unable to eat normally so uses the sideways movement to grasp bird seed and demolish his favourite fat balls. He loves Basmati cooked rice too. He is much smaller than the other crows and he is still a bit of a loner as I guess being disabled he may not be as accepted by the others, but we notice he is in the company of a larger crow much of the time which is great.

He knows when I put out the breakfast for the birds and is always first on the scene and when I shoo off the other crows he stays and gets on with eating but he looks over as if to say.. ‘you don’t scare me missus’.  He still enjoys the bird bath to wash down his food.

As always a thank you to the amazing contributors who share their expertise and entertain us every week.

On the blog front

This week on the series by guests are Sandra Cox, Debby Gies and Balroop Singh and I am sure you will find them as fascinating as I did..

William Price King joined me on The Breakfast show this week for the second part of the hits from 1995 and for the next part of the series on Friday featuring the legendary Aretha Franklin. You can also find William – Blog– IMPROVISATION– William Price King on Tumblr

Debby Gies took us on a visit to Curacao..a wondeful island.. and of course found some funnies and a video to share with us this week. Over on Debby’s blog you can enjoy a Q&A with author Jan Sikes very interesting and entertaining..Catch up with other posts in her archives D.G. Kaye

Carol Taylor joined me on Wednesday with amazing recipes to ensure that we get sufficient Manganese in our diets… and as always an informative and entertaining week on her own blog including store cupboard basics, food reviews, The Bon Bon fruit, Chicken Kebabs and her Saturday Snippets

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 22nd -28th May 2022-Monday Musings, Health, Food Review “Real food v Processed Food” and Saturday Snippets where “Dance” is my one word prompt.

Thank you too for the support during the week and your wonderful comments that always gives me a boost.

On with the show

Chart Hits 1995 Part Two – Tom Petty, TLC, Annie Lennox, The Rembrandts

William Price King meets the Music Legends – Aretha Franklin – The Rise to Fame.

The Travel Column Rewind with D.G. Kaye – #Caribbean Welcome to #Curacao #Lesser Antilles

Manganese – Spinach, Chicken, Tomato and Basil

#Romance, #Humour – Chapter Twelve – Advertising Sales by Sally Cronin

Chapter Thirteen – Makeover and the art of buying a car by Sally Cronin

On the Run by Sally Cronin

Colleen Chesebro’s Tuesday Weekly Challenge – #Themeprompt – #TankaProse – Useful by Sally Cronin

Main-parts-of-the-Brain-72dpi

The Dynamics of Change – Part Two – Our Mental Approach to Life by Sally Cronin

Food Therapy – #Walnuts – Not just any nut… by Sally Cronin

#Poetry – Life & Soul (Book 2 in the Soul Poetry series) by Harmony Kent

#Flashfiction – Tell Me A Story in 99 words by Annette Rochelle Aben

#Goodnews John Howell, #Steampunk Richard Dee, #Poetry Robbie Cheadle & Yvette Calleiro, #Characters Gwen Plano, #Reunion Pete Springer & Jennie Fitzkee, #Interview Marcia Meara & Mike Allegra

I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! #Life by Terry Tyler

#Wedding – I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! by Alex Craigie

I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! #Letter to my younger self by Dorothy Grover-Read

– Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Vet Care and Pirates

Another Open Mic Night with author Daniel Kemp – Out of the mouths of Babes and Church Notices

 

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will join me again next week… Sally.

Smorgasbord Health Column – Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiencies with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Magnesium – Coleslaw, Pumpkin Seeds, Tom Yum Soup, Morning Glory


Welcome to the rewind of this series from 2019 where we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

We wanted to share with you what happens if your body is deprived of individual nutrients over an extended period of time.

In this series we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

Thankfully most of us eat reasonably well, with plenty of variety, but if you take a look at a week’s worth of meals, do you find that you are sticking to a handful of foods, all the time.

Variety is key to good health, to provide your body with as broad a spectrum of nutrients as possible that the body needs. Taking a supplement or relying on shakes and bars to provide your daily allowance of vitamins and nutrients is not in your body’s best interest. Giving it foods that the body can process and extract everything it needs is vital.

Over the next few months we are going to be working our way through the most essential of these nutrients and I will share the symptoms that you might experience if you are becoming deficient in the vitamin or mineral and list the foods where you can find the nutrient.

Carol Taylor is then going to provide you with some wonderful recipes that make best use of these foods… Cooked from Scratch.

Magnesium – Calcium’s BFF and a deficiency alert

One of the minerals that most people focus on is calcium (the last column) but it is in fact magnesium or the lack of this mineral in our diet that may be the contributory factor in many of the diseases that we suffer from, particularly as we get older.

Deficiency alert

It is believed that the availability of magnesium in drinking water and in our soil is now greatly decreased.

Not only is the soil depleted but the plants that we eat are also becoming more and more magnesium deficient for two reasons. There is less magnesium in the soil that nourishes them, and the use of potassium and phosphorus-laden fertilisers, alter the ability of the plant to absorb the mineral.

When we cook food we lose magnesium and if we restrict our calories during a diet and remove specific food groups such as whole grains; it can create an imbalance.

pH balance – Acidity and Alkalinity

It is important that our bodies have a pH level that maintains the correct balance being too much acid or too alkaline. Major organs and our blood have their own healthy pH level and this also applies to our intestines. Our modern diet of high sugars and processed foods compromises the pH balance in our gut creating a high acidity environment, leading to malabsorption of not just magnesium, but of all the nutrients the body needs to maintain health.

It is staggering how many diseases are linked to a deficiency of this mineral including:

• Alzheimer’s disease
• Angina
• Asthma
• Autism
• Auto immune disorders
• Congestive heart failure
• Depression
• Diabetes
• Eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia
• Heart disease
• High blood pressure
• Insomnia
• Kidney stones
• Headaches
• Multiple sclerosis
• Muscle weakness
• Parkinson’s disease
• Osteoporosis.

How Magnesium works with Calcium (the most abundant mineral in the body) and Vitamins D and K – Nutrients that need to work together.

  • Magnesium works with calcium in a number of ways but fundamentally the absorption of calcium is severely compromised if there is not sufficient magnesium.
  • Calcium is stored in the body including in our bones and teeth. Magnesium however is not stored and we therefore need to include in our diet daily.
  • Humans now consume more dairy than they have in the past and although magnesium is present in dairy in small amounts the amount of calcium is ten times more. If there is not sufficient magnesium, calcium is not absorbed into the bones as it should be and instead it collects in soft tissue, including around our joints leading to inflammation and arthritis.
  • Because it is not being absorbed into the bones, that leads to loss of bone density over time leading to osteoporosis.
  • Muscle contraction is made possible by calcium but muscles also need to relax and that requires magnesium.

Magnesium has a critical role in the health of our major organs and systems including:

  • Brain health- Magnesium lowers the risk of heavy metal poisoning and deposits in the brain leading to dementia. This is turn will corrupt nerve transmission and the secretion of hormones such as insulin.
  • Reproductive health. As magnesium is essential for the transmission of oestrogen a deficiency in young women’s diets can result in irregular periods and other PMS symptoms. This is particularly relevant to cramps due to a calcium (contract muscle) magnesium (relax muscle) imbalance.
  • Apart from our bones magnesium is needed in the formation of protein and fatty acids, new cells throughout the body, activating the B vitamins, clotting blood and helping form the ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) fuel that we run on.The good news is that by consuming magnesium in high quality fresh products (not necessarily organic but not the cheapest) daily is usually effective provided you are not over consuming calcium rich foods every day in excess.

The best food sources for magnesium are to be found in dark green vegetables such as spinach also in fish, meat, seafood, apples, apricots, avocados, bananas, whole grain cereals such as brown rice, beans and nuts.

Welcome to this week’s food column where I am looking at incorporating magnesium in the diet.

As Sally has stated as the quality of much of our soil is depleted it means plants are becoming more and more deficient in Magnesium…

Magnesium is also lost during cooking processes…There is much debate about cooking processes and although I eat a fair amount of raw vegetables and herbs purely for the taste some foods need cooking and in some cases heating can enhance some vitamins…

I eat a varied diet and don’t exclude any food group and believe that is the best way to get the nutrients my body needs.

Personally I don’t use a microwave and although I steam some vegetables it does leave them bland tasting and that’s when we pile on the butter or dressing…

I tend to favour stir frying most of my vegetables as I can add chilli, garlic, herbs and other aromatics.

Today…I am giving you a lovely slaw recipe which is loaded with lots of vitamins as well as its share of Magnesium…

Appetizer, Background, Bowl, Cabbage, Carrot, Chopped

Ingredients – Coleslaw

• 12oz broccoli, cabbage, salad mix, shredded carrots are a nice addition..one of my favourites as it always brings back memories of the very odd occasion when I was allowed as a child to have a school lunch and the grated carrots were a big favourite of mine…But really just use your favourite veggies…Shredded finely…Sometimes I even add an apple.
• 1/2 cup cooked bacon, crumbled (vegans can omit or use coconut bacon)See below.
• 1/2 cup blueberries
• 1/4 cup dried cranberries or craisins
• 1/4 cup sunflower seeds (roasted)
• 2 tbsp. balsamic or red wine vinegar
• 1/4 cup plain kefir yogurt (can use plain yogurt too)
• 1 tsp smoked paprika or chilli flakes
• 1/4 cup chopped nuts .again pick your favourite…I love walnuts and almonds.
• 1/2 tsp mustard powder (optional)
• Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1 tbsp olive or avocado oil

Preparation

  • Place your vegetables in mixing bowl.
  • Add in your kefir/ yogurt and vinegar. Mix well.
  • Then add seasonings. Mix again.
  • Finally, add the remaining ingredients, berries, seeds, bacon, onion, etc. Mix and chill in fridge until ready to serve.
  • This is also great to mix into wraps, as a topping for your jacket potato or as a side dish
  • Makes 3-4 servings.

N.B…Coconut Bacon…

Did you know?

1 ounce of pumpkin seeds will give you 37% of your daily value of magnesium. However if you have heard that dark chocolate will provided 100% of your daily magnesium…Yes it does contain magnesium …There is always a but isn’t there? You would need to eat at least 2/3 of a big bar…Not your best source of Magnesium if you are watching the weight.

A take on Tom Yum Soup… This is one of my favourite Thai soups and so easy to make from scratch. Adding a portion of salmon and you are on your way to topping up your magnesium.

Ingredients

• 2 litres of water
• 4 stalks of lemon grass
• 1-inch chunk of galangal
• 10 kaffir lime leaves
• 10 Thai chillies
• 5 cloves of garlic
• 85 gm salmon per person
• 100 gm noodles of your choice per person
• 300 grams of oyster mushrooms
• 2 medium tomatoes cut into quarters.
• 5-6 shallots halved if really small if a little bigger quartered
• 1 and a half tsp of sugar
• 7 – 10 tbsp of fish sauce (depending on your taste)
• Juice of 5 -8 limes.
• A handful of cilantro ( Coriander)
• Half hardboiled egg per person…optional

N.B I recommend using the lowest amount of limes and fish sauce and Taste! Adjust if necessary as everyone’s taste varies.

Let’s Cook!

  • The first thing to do is put about 2 litres of water in a large pot to boil.
  • Then I like to start by squeezing my limes. This is not the first step of the recipe, but it’s best to have your limes squeezed so when you need them later, you don’t need to rush to squeeze them all.
  • Take your stalks of lemongrass, and first tear off the outermost leaf and throw it out. Then, I like to use a rolling-pin or the handle end of a knife to lightly pound the lemongrass to release the flavours. Then just slice it diagonally into 1-inch strips or so.
  • Take about 1 thumb-sized chunk of the root part of galangal, and chop it into slices.
  • Coarsely break about 10 kaffir lime leaves – no need to cut them, just tear them – which is going to help release their flavour.
  • Peel about 5 cloves of garlic.
  • I used about 10 Thai birds eye chillies for this recipe, but you can use however many you’d like. First, take off the stem, and then you can either just slice them in two pieces, or give them a little pound on your cutting board like I did (just be careful of flying seeds). You can also remove the seeds if you still like the chilli flavour but not as much heat.

  • Throw the lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaves, garlic and chillies into the water.
    You can put the lid on just so it starts to boil which releases the herb flavours quicker.
  • Boil your soup with all the herbs in it for about 10 minutes.
  • Then add your mushrooms, which you should pre-rinse beforehand.
  • Cook for 4-5 minutes. .Add the tomatoes and onions.
  • Cook for further 6-8 minutes.
  • Now add your noodles and after 2 mins add your salmon and cook for a further 5 mins until salmon is just poached…
  • Remove from heat and gently stir in fish sauce, lime juice, sugar and cilantro.
  • Taste and adjust if necessary.

This delicious soup is now ready to serve. Garnish with half a boiled egg and some coriander…

Enjoy!

Another source of Magnesium are dark greens simply just stirfried…If you want you could add a few almonds…

Stir-fried Morning Glory or Pad Pak Boon Fai Daeng is also known as water spinach…It is a very popular vegetable dish in Thailand and one I have for breakfast/brunch quite often with rice.

This is a very quick dish to cook once you have all your ingredients prepared..5 mins at the most.

Ingredients:

• 1 bunch of Morning Glory
• 4-6 cloves of garlic
• 3 or more Thai Chillies
• 2 tbsp of Oyster Sauce
• 1 tbsp of Thai Fish Sauce
• 1 tbsp of fermented soybean paste or oil with soya beans ( optional)
• 1 tsp sugar
• 1/2 to 1 tbsp of oil
• 1/4 cup fresh veg or pork stock

Let’s Cook!

  • Wash and cut your morning-glory into 4-6 inch pieces.
  • Bash the chillies and garlic in a pestle and mortar
  • Heat the oil in a pan until very hot.
  • Add the garlic and chillies and stir-fry (stirring) for 15-20 seconds be careful not to let the garlic burn.

  • Add morning-glory and all other ingredients except for the vegetable stock.
  • Stir-fry for 40 seconds and add vegetable stock and stir-fry for another 10 seconds.
  • Serve with steamed rice or as a side dish.

Enjoy!

This is a lovely vegetable dish and you could use any dark greens and cook the same way I sometimes shred kale and the stems or broccoli and again I take of the outside and used the stem either cut in slices or julienne depends on what I am cooking but any dark greens are lovely cooked this way it is quick way to cook and retain as many of the vitamins as possible.

Until next time…xx Thank you for reading xx

My thanks to Carol for these recipes that will bring magnesium into your diet deliciously… and that coconut bacon looks interesting..

Next time.. we turn our attention to another of the essential minerals in our diet.. I hope you will join us.

About your hosts…

About Sally Cronin

I am a qualified nutritional therapist with twenty-four years experience working with clients in Ireland and the UK as well as being a health consultant on radio in Spain.

Although I write a lot of fiction, I actually wrote my first two books on health, the first one, Size Matters, a weight loss programme 20 years ago, based on my own weight loss of 154lbs. My first clinic was in Ireland, the Cronin Diet Advisory Centre and my second book, Just Food for Health was written as my client’s workbook. Since then I have written a men’s health manual, and anti-aging programme, articles for magazines, radio programmes and posts here on Smorgasbord.

About Carol Taylor

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetables ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use have to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: Amazon US

Connect to Carol – Blog: Carol Cooks 2 – Twitter: @CarolCooksTwo – Facebook: Carol Taylor

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – April 25th – May 1st 2022 – Ella Fitzgerald, Chart hits 1993, St. Kitts, Calcium, Poetry, Book Reviews, Guest Posts, Health and Humour


Welcome to the round up of posts on Smorgasbord this week you might have missed.

I hope all is well with you and in your neck of the woods.. Still busy in the house and garden and all the potting done now the frosts seem to have finished. This week I get moved out into the dining room as David gives our office a facelift… Luckily he has networked through the house so it does not cause too much of an upheaval.

We are still having issues with the Internet, and it is not giving us the speeds it should and dropped out completely at the beginning of the week. Because I schedule well ahead the posts are not impacted but fingers crossed it behaves better this coming week.

I have been invited to join the hosts Beem Weeks and Stephen Geez on Wednesday on the popular Voice of Indie Podcast and I am looking forward to meeting them both.

As always I must thank these three amazing contributors as the blog would not be the same without them.

William Price King joined me on The Breakfast show this week for the second part of the hits from 1993 and for the next part of the series on Friday featuring Ella Fitzgerald. – You can also find William – Blog– IMPROVISATION– William Price King on Tumblr

Debby Gies is recovering from Covid thankfully, but you know that it wasn’t going to stop her sharing so many of our posts on social media, and also publishing her own posts, including the third part of her adventures over the winter months.  If you are heading to Mexico for a vacation and in particular Puerto Vallarta, let Debby Gies​ be your guide.. in the last of her posts on her latest excursion, she shares how to get the best for your money in stores, trading at the beach, in the supermarkets and at the bar.

Puerto Vallarta, #Mexico Part 3, Fun, Sun, Shopping and Friends

Debby also took us to St. Kitts this week in the Travel Column... and if you head over you can also catch up with Debby’s other posts during the week .D.G. Writes

Carol Taylor shared her amazing recipes this week to ensure we are getting sufficient amounts of the vital mineral calcium, and she also shares some amazing Salmon recipes to complement the food therapy post this week.  As always Carol has been very busy on her own blog and you can catch up with all the action in her weekly round up including Food reviews, thoughts on what is going on in the world, recipes and health.

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 24th -30th April 2022-Monday Musings, Health, Food Review “Salmon” and Saturday Snippets where “Blue” is my prompt.

As always my thanks to you for your visits, comments and sharing of posts to social media.. it is appreciated.. ♥

On with the show

The Breakfast Show with William Price King and Sally Cronin – Chart Hits 1993 Part Two – UB40, Mariah Carey, Meatloaf, The Proclaimers

William Price King meets the Jazz Icons – Ella Fitzgerald Part Three – The Eight Songbooks

The Travel Column Rewind with D.G. Kaye – Welcome to Saint Kitts #Caribbean

Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiencies with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Calcium the most abundant mineral in the body

Chapter Four – The Dental Practice

Chapter Five – Hair Pieces and The Shoe Department

Chesebro’s Tuesday Weekly Challenge – #Choka – Origins

ales from the Irish Garden – Chapter Five – The First Banquet in the new Palace

Food Therapy Rewind- Salmon – Omega 3 on a Plate by Sally Cronin

#Crime #Thriller – Wings of Mayhem: The Mayhem Series: #1 by Sue Coletta

Book Reviews Round Up – April 2022 – #Psychological #Thriller Terry Tyler, #Biography S. Bavey, #1920s #Jazz Beem Weeks, #Shortstories Simon Van Der Velde, #Crime Sue Coletta

I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! by Christopher Graham – The Story Reading Ape

I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! by Toni Pike

#Children’s – Tina Lost in a Crowd by Miriam Hurdle

Host Malcolm Allen – Street Golf and Shopping

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Funnies and Weird Facts Part One.

 

Thank you for dropping in and I hope you will join me again next week… Sally.

Smorgasbord Health Column – Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiencies with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Calcium the most abundant mineral in the body


Welcome to the rewind of this series from 2019 where we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

We wanted to share with you what happens if your body is deprived of individual nutrients over an extended period of time.

In this series we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

Thankfully most of us eat reasonably well, with plenty of variety, but if you take a look at a week’s worth of meals, do you find that you are sticking to a handful of foods, all the time.

Variety is key to good health, to provide your body with as broad a spectrum of nutrients as possible that the body needs. Taking a supplement or relying on shakes and bars to provide your daily allowance of vitamins and nutrients is not in your body’s best interest. Giving it foods that the body can process and extract everything it needs is vital.

Over the next few months we are going to be working our way through the most essential of these nutrients and I will share the symptoms that you might experience if you are becoming deficient in the vitamin or mineral and list the foods where you can find the nutrient.

Carol Taylor is then going to provide you with some wonderful recipes that make best use of these foods… Cooked from Scratch.

Calcium, the most abundant mineral in the body

Calcium is the most abundant and essential mineral in the body. There are about two or three pounds of calcium, which is mainly found in the teeth and the bones. Apart from the more obvious role in their formation it is also essential for the efficient functioning of many essential systems in the body.

There is also some evidence to suggest that women cannot absorb calcium prior to menstruating and that there may be an accumulative deficiency that contributes to PMS and menopause symptoms and also degenerative diseases such as osteoporosis. Certainly women who take in additional calcium have reported a reduction in those symptoms.

Our bones are not static and are constantly being broken down and formed. They are a living tissue made primarily from collagen which forms the framework whilst the calcium hardens the structure. After 40 years old more of the bone is broken down and less is manufactured; which is why it is important to make sure that you are consuming the right balance of dietary calcium to prevent osteoporosis. Other vitamins such as D and K and minerals are involved in the structure of bone and those have been covered in The skeleton, Bone health Vitamins D and K

There are a surprising number of symptoms associated with a deficiency in calcium and here are the key ones to look out for:

  • Frequent feeling of dizziness leading to fainting
  • Chest pains (can lead to heart failure)
  • Numbness or tingling in fingers and toes
  • Frequent muscle cramps in legs particularly.
  • Difficulty swallowing,
  • Shortness of breath and wheezing
  • Fatigue
  • Very dry skin
  • Consistent tooth decay
  • Eye problems leading to cataracts
  • Muscle weakness
  • Reduced bone density (osteoporosis)

Word of warning about supplementation

If you are at risk from kidney stones you need to be careful about taking in calcium supplements and this also applies when taking in additional dietary calcium in the form of dairy products if you are suffering from prostate cancer. One of the reasons for this is that excess calcium depletes the body of Vitamin D, which is essential for our immune systems and may also protect against prostate cancer.

If you are supplementing choose a formula that includes Calcium and Vitamin D to aid absorption. As it is rare for a complete deficiency of calcium in our western culture it is important to ask the advice of a qualified sales person in the health store or the pharmacist. Keep a food diary for a week and take with you so that they can see what you are currently consuming.

Calcium is one of the nutrients that works more efficiently in conjunction with others including Magnesium for better absorption.

The best dietary sources of calcium are through eating moderate amounts of dairy products such as milk, cheese and butter. If you find that cow’s milk does not agree with you then try goat’s milk products from time to time as the different antibody does not usually cause an intolerance.

Eat fish such as sardines and canned salmon with the bones, green leafy vegetables such as spinach, watercress (more calcium than milk) and soy products such as tofu.You will also find good amounts in dried apricots, figs, kiwi fruit and oranges.

Time to hand you over to Carol Taylor who has been creating dishes that include ingredients that are great sources of Calcium.

Today marks the start of the next Cook from scratch to avoid deficiency of minerals in the body we begin with – Calcium…the most abundant and essential mineral in the body.

I am happy to be working with Sally on this…she is the expert on everything to do with Calcium… I have great fun researching and trying out the recipes on my ever happy band of guinea pigs…haha…They are my harshest critics trust me…They do not consider my feelings what so ever if it is not good I get told… I also get suggestions on how I can improve the said recipe…But that is good…I like that as that is the only way to get a better dish…I trust their judgement as they know food and always…well, nearly… offer what I consider good alternatives or additions to a dish…My role was to teach them and I consider it a job well done…

This first dish is a pasta one as although pasta is not a particular favourite with me… I prefer rice…My taste testers love pasta dishes and I know many of you do…

Pasta with spinach pesto and sardines…

Ingredients:

• ½ lb spaghetti…I used bows
• 15 cherry tomatoes
• 2 tbsp capers
• ½ cup pesto (see below)
• 1 can pacific caught wild sardines in olive oil…
• Fresh ground black pepper to taste
• Parmesan or crumbled feta for topping.
• Pesto
• 4 cloves garlic
• Zest and juice from 1 lemon
• 4 cups greens (I used 3 cups spinach and 1 cup basil)
• ½ cup walnuts or almonds
• 1 cup grated parmesan
• 1 tsp salt
• ¾ cup olive oil

Let’s Cook

  1. Using the back of your knife crush the garlic…The peel should come right off.
  2. Add all ingredients except olive oil and cheese in your food processor. Puree while drizzling olive oil in. The consistency should be slightly chunky, but the garlic shouldn’t be in large pieces.
  3. Once you get that right consistency, add the Parmesan and pulse until combined.
  4. Reserve ½ cup pesto for the pasta and freeze remaining or store in the fridge if you plan on using it within a week on say eggs, pizza or salmon…Salmon and pesto is one of my favourites and so quick to do…
  5. The next step is to cook the Pasta, bring large pot of water to boil with about 1 tsp of salt.
  6. While waiting for the water to come to the boil…slice tomatoes in half lengthwise. Slice extra if you ate some like I did….Cooks perks…haha…either that or my smallest tester is pinching one or two as I slice…
  7. Add pasta to boiling water and stir so it doesn’t stick. Cover pot and bring water back to a boil then remove the lid.
  8. Cook pasta until al dente, about 5-7 minutes. It should still have a little bite to it since it will cook more with the pesto. Before draining, reserve 1 cup of pasta water. The starchy pasta water along with the pesto will create a nice saucy coating on the spaghetti.
  9. Drain pasta, but do not rinse. Rinsing cools the pasta and prevents it from absorbing the sauce.
  10. Return the pot to a medium heat and add 2 tbsp olive oil.
  11. Add sardines and break up with spoon or tongs.
  12. Add about half of the pesto and then add the pasta. Stir until coated and drizzle in ¼ cup of the cooking water.
  13. Add the remaining pesto and drizzle in ¼ cup more water. Toss until well coated and pesto and water have created a sauce. If needed, add more pasta water.
  14. Toss in tomatoes and capers right before serving. Serve with parmesan cheese or crumbled feta which I did…

Enjoy!

My second dish is a dish which I have been craving for a long time and just never got around to making it…When I got to thinking about foods which contain Calcium like milk, cheese and butter…I got to thinking about rice pudding again…I love a baked rice budding with nutmeg which is how my mum always made it…The skin we would fight over as we all wanted the lions share…haha…

I am also very lucky to be able to get fresh goats milk so Rice Pudding it is with just a few tweaks…

Rice Pudding, Rice, Cute, Sweet Dish, Dessert, Yummy

Baked Rice Pudding…

Ingredients:

• 750 ml of goats milk
• 100 gm pudding rice
• 75 gm sugar
• 25 gm grass fed butter
• Grated Orange zest..reserve some for decoration
• Grated nutmeg

Let’s Bake…

First wash and drain the rice then grease a 1.5 litre oven proof dish with all the butter.

Stir together the rice, milk, sugar and orange zest leaving some for decoration when serving.

Pour the mixture into your greased oven proof dish and sprinkle the top with the grated nutmeg and just smell that aroma it is one of the best smells I adore nutmeg…

Bake the pudding at 150C/ Gas mk 2 for approx 2 hrs depending on your oven. Stir the pudding gently after about 20 minutes then cook until the rice is thick and creamy and the top golden brown.

My thanks to Carol for these two recipes that will bring calcium into your diet and for reminding me about homemade rice pudding… on the list.

Next time.. we turn our attention to another of the essential minerals in our diet.. I hope you will join us.

About your hosts…

About Sally Cronin

I am a qualified nutritional therapist with twenty-four years experience working with clients in Ireland and the UK as well as being a health consultant on radio in Spain.

Although I write a lot of fiction, I actually wrote my first two books on health, the first one, Size Matters, a weight loss programme 20 years ago, based on my own weight loss of 154lbs. My first clinic was in Ireland, the Cronin Diet Advisory Centre and my second book, Just Food for Health was written as my client’s workbook. Since then I have written a men’s health manual, and anti-aging programme, articles for magazines, radio programmes and posts here on Smorgasbord.

About Carol Taylor

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetables ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use have to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: Amazon US

Connect to Carol – Blog: Carol Cooks 2 – Twitter: @CarolCooksTwo – Facebook: Carol Taylor

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up – 11th – 17th April 2022 – Twitter fakes, Hits 1992, Ella Fitzgerald, #Caribbean, Vitamin C, Stories, Poetry, Reviews, Health and Funnies


Welcome to the round up of posts you might have missed this week on Smorgasbord.

It seems that winter is dragging on for many this week including places that hve been seeing some unseasonal cold weather and frosts such as South America, with some crops at risk at this critical stage in their growth. By this time I usually have my planters full of flowers but last week we had several severe frosts but hopeful it will be warmer this week. Apart from the colour in the garden.. the exercise would be welcome, especially after we shared a box of luxury chocolates for Easter instead of eggs… a little of what you fancy does you good!!.

 

On another note. This week someone decided to use my name and photograph and open an account on Twitter. One of my contacts alerted me to it early in the week as they had been approached but she saw it was a different twitter tag although it was my name and picture. Also there was no profile to indicate who and what this person was nor where there any tweets made.

I reported and blocked them. This is important as they are usually after your connections and all they have to do is click on Followers in a profile and then keep clicking the follow button without much limitation.

Many people follow back automatically when a notification appears in their timeline without heading over to check who it is they are following. This means that this fake person can end up with potentially thousands of followers who they can then target for one purpose or another. For example book promotion sites who claim to have 250,000 connections and ask for £50 a promotion!  Or it may be direct messages promoting their goods or even asking donations for a charity etc.

Anyway.. my twitter is @sgc58… and it is Sally Georgina Cronin

They are using twitter.com/germaine_ellen  and it is a good idea to block them to stop them mining your followers and if you feel like reporting them then that is a good idea too.

I did report to twitter and told them they were impersonating me but they wanted me to upload my passport or driving licence to prove who I was. I am not doing that as most social media sites as as leaky as my kitchen colander.

It is best to check before following back anyone.. if they are genuine they will have at least some form of profile to indicate who and what they are and they have tweeted.

There is always something to be grateful for, including these three amazing contributors.

My thanks to William Price King for joining me on The Breakfast show this week and for the first part of the new series for Friday featuring Ella Fitzgerald.  – You can also find William – Blog– IMPROVISATION– William Price King on Tumblr

Debby Gies has been busy this week with her catch up posts following her two months away from her blog including some highlights from her trip to Puerto Vallarta in #Mexico… of particular interest to anyone going there for a vacation with regard to food, drink and restaurant service…

You will also find a packed Writer’s links post and her Sunday book review for Alex Craigie – Means to DeceiveD.G. Writes

Carol Taylor has had another interesting week on her blog and she has wrapped them all up in one terrific round up. Including Monday Musings, Chicken with Shitake Mushrooms and Tarragon, World Cuisine featuring the eclectic food to be found in Canada, Spring Cleaning the Spice Cupboard and her usual entertaining Saturday Snippets.

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 10th -16th April 2022-Monday Musings, A-Z World Cuisine, Canada , Food Review “Spring Cleaning” and Saturday Snippets where “Squeak” is my prompt.

Thank you for all your support during the week and always lovely to receive your comments… have a lovely rest of the weekend.

On with the show…

 

Chart Hits 1992 Part Two – George Michael and Elton John, Boys II Men, Shakespears Sister , Bruce Springsteen

William Price King meets the Jazz Icons – Ella Fitzgerald – The Early Years

The Travel Column Rewind with D.G. Kaye – #Caribbean- Welcome to St. Martin – Two Countries – One Island

Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiencies with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Vitamin C (ascorbic acid and L-ascorbic acid) oranges, grapefruit, cauliflower, eggplant

Just an Odd Job Girl – Serialisation – #Romance, #Humour – Chapter One- Reflections on the Past

TankaProse – Verse Envelope – Seasons – text and audio

Memories, Music and Movies – 1997 – Belgium, road trip, Dublin, Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman, The Full Monty

Smorgasbord Podcast – Tales from the Irish Garden.. A Place of Sanctuary

Food Therapy Rewind- #Asparagus #VitaminK2 – Nutrient Packed and Delicious by Sally Cronin

#Biography #WWI, Queen Victoria, #Adventures, Lucky Jack by S. Bavey

Guest Post – I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! by John W. Howell

New Book on the Shelves – #Western #Paranormal Mateo’s Blood Brother by Sandra Cox

#Fantasy #Adventure – The Ferryman and the Sea Witch by D.Wallace Peach

#Family, #Dementia, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me by Abbie Johnson Taylor

Personal Recommendations – #Family Allan Hudson, #Children’s Sue Wickstead, #Children’s Bette A. Stevens

The Senior Team pass the the funnies along – Pearls of Wisdom Part Two – Sunbathing and Scarecrows

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Fish Bait and dating columns

 

Thank you very much for joining me today and I hope you will drop by again next week.. Sally.

Smorgasbord Health Column – Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiencies with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Vitamin C (ascorbic acid and L-ascorbic acid) oranges, grapefruit, cauliflower, eggplant


Welcome to the rewind of this series from 2019 where we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

We wanted to share with you what happens if your body is deprived of individual nutrients over an extended period of time.

In this series we look at cooking and your diet from a different perspective. Usually we emphasize the health benefits of food and how they can be incorporated into your diet. But, what happens if you do NOT include them in your diet.

Thankfully most of us eat reasonably well, with plenty of variety, but if you take a look at a week’s worth of meals, do you find that you are sticking to a handful of foods, all the time.

Variety is key to good health, to provide your body with as broad a spectrum of nutrients as possible that the body needs. Taking a supplement or relying on shakes and bars to provide your daily allowance of vitamins and nutrients is not in your body’s best interest. Giving it foods that the body can process and extract everything it needs is vital.

Over the next few months we are going to be working our way through the most essential of these nutrients and I will share the symptoms that you might experience if you are becoming deficient in the vitamin or mineral and list the foods where you can find the nutrient.

Carol Taylor is then going to provide you with some wonderful recipes that make best use of these foods… Cooked from Scratch.

Vitamin C (ascorbic acid and L-ascorbic acid) is probably one of the best known of our nutrients. It is rightly so as it has so many important functions within the body including keeping our immune system fighting fit.

The best way to take in Vitamin C is through our diet, in a form that our body recognises and can process to extract what it needs. For example a large orange a day will provide you with a wonderfully sweet way to obtain a good amount of vitamin C, but to your body that orange represents an essential element of over 3000 biological processes in the body!

.
Vitamin C is water-soluble and cannot be stored in the body. It therefore needs to be taken in through our food on a daily basis. It is in fact the body’s most powerful water-soluble antioxidant and plays a vital role in protecting the body against oxidative damage from free radicals.

It works by neutralising potentially harmful reactions in the water- based parts of our body such as the blood and within the fluids surrounding every cell. It helps prevent harmful cholesterol (LDL) from free radical damage, which can lead to plaque forming on the inside of arteries, blocking them.

The antioxidant action protects the health or the heart, the brain and many other bodily tissues.

Vitamin C is an effective agent when it comes to boosting our immune systems. It works by increasing the production of our white blood cells that make up our defence system, in particular B and T cells. It also increases levels of interferon and antibody responses improving antibacterial and antiviral effects.

The overall effect is improved resistance to infection and it may also reduce the duration of the symptoms of colds for example. It may do this by decreasing the blood levels of histamine, which has triggered the tissue inflammation and caused a runny nose.

It has not been proven but certainly taking vitamin C in the form of fruit and vegetable juices is not going to be harmful. Another affect may be protective as it prevents oxidative damage to the cells and tissues that occur when cells are fighting off infection.

This vitamin plays a role along with the B vitamins we have already covered in the conversion of tryptophan to serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the brain that helps determine our emotional well being.

Other areas that Vitamin C is vital to our health.

Collagen is the protein that forms the basis of our connective tissue that is the most abundant tissue in the body. It glues cells together, supports and protects our organs, blood vessels, joints and muscles and also

Our hormones require Vitamin C for the synthesis of hormones by the adrenal glands.
The cardiovascular system relies on Vitamin C that plays a role in cholesterol production in the liver and in the conversion of cholesterol into bile acids for excretion from the body. The vitamin also promotes normal total blood cholesterol and LDL (lousy cholesterol levels) and raises the levels of the more beneficial HDL (Healthy cholesterol) It supports healthy circulation and blood pressure, which in turn supports the heart.

The other areas that Vitamin C has shown it might be helpful to the body is in the lungs reducing breathing difficulties and improving lung and white blood cell function. It is recommended that smokers take Vitamin C not just in their diet but also as

Many studies are showing that Vitamin C can protect the health of the eye by possibly reducing ultra violet damage. .

Research is ongoing with Vitamin C and certainly in the fight against cancer there are some interesting developments.

Vitamin C works as part of a team helping in various metabolic processes such as the absorption of iron, converting folic acid to an active state, protecting against the effects of toxic effects of cadmium, copper, cobalt and mercury (brain health).

One word of warning if you are on the contraceptive pill. Vitamin C in large supplemental doses can interfere with the absorption of the pill and reduce its effectiveness.

What are the symptoms of a deficiency of Vitamin C?

A total deficiency is extremely rare in the western World. A total lack of the vitamin leads to scurvy, which was responsible for thousands of deaths at sea from the middle ages well into the 19th century. Some voyages to the pacific resulted in a loss of as much as 75% of the crew.

The symptoms were due to the degeneration of collagen that lead to broken blood vessels, bleeding gums, loose teeth, joint pains and dry scaly skin.

Other symptoms were weakness, fluid retention, depression and anaemia.

You can link these symptoms back up to the benefits of vitamin C and understand how many parts and processes of the body this vitamin is involved in.

In a milder form a deficiency has also been linked to:

  • increased infections
  • male infertility
  • rheumatoid arthritis
  • and gastrointestinal disorders.

Best Food Sources.

The best food source of vitamin C is all fresh, raw fruit and vegetables. Avoid buying prepared peeled and cut vegetables and fruit, as they will have lost the majority of their vitamin C. If you prepare juices at home, always drink within a few hours preferably immediately. Do not boil fruit and vegetables, it is better to eat raw whenever possible preserving all their nutrient content, but at the very least only steam lightly.

Researchers believe that taking in adequate amounts of Vitamin C is the best private health insurance that you can take out.

The best food sources is of course fresh fruit and vegetables but the highest concentrations are in:

Blackcurrants, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, cherries, grapefruit, guavas, kiwi fruit, lemons, oranges parsley, peppers, rosehip, potatoes, tomatoes and watercress.

Time to hand you over to Carol Taylor who has been creating dishes that include ingredients that are great sources of Vitamin C.

Vitamin C…To me it is the sunshine vitamin as all the fruit and vegetables which are high in this vitamin are the most glorious colours.

Eaten raw or cooked although lightly steam or roasted as this retains most of the vitamins… Of course depending on where you live there will be other fruits/veggies which are high in Vitamin C…For me here that includes Pineapple, Mango, Papaya and even my favourite, the chilli.

The easiest ways to get your vitamin C is of course to eat the fruit raw, you could also add some spinach to your cooked rice and just let the heat of the rice wilt the spinach, Raw peppers sliced and eating with hummus or which we love here just chop some peppers all three colours, shallot stir into some cooked rice add some sweet corn if liked and I just make this little Italian dressing.

Ingredients

• 3 tbsp olive oil
• 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
• 1 tbsp fresh parsley chopped
• ½ tbsp fresh lime/lemon juice
• 1 clove garlic finely chopped
• 1 tbsp dried basil crumbled
• Pinch oregano

Whisk together and chill until required and then add to rice and stir through this recipe is also easy to double up.

This rice salad is easy to make with leftover cooked rice and eaten with some grilled fish or meat. It is also lovely with all the colours of the peppers and if like me you want to up the garlic just chop some extra cloves of garlic and add…

Grapefruit is also high in vitamin C…Here the Pomelo is more common it is just like a bigger grapefruit…

Pomelo Salad or as it is known here Yum Som O is a wonderful light refreshing salad made with Thai Grapefruit( Pink Grapefruit) can be substituted and there is very little difference in flavour.

Ingredients:

• 2 Pink Grapefruit or 1 Pomelo.
• 12-16 peeled shrimps.
• A sm cucumber diced.
• 1/4 cup finely sliced shallots.
• 1/4 cup fresh Thai Basil or Mint.
• 1/4 cup Fresh coriander.
• 1/4 cup unsalted peanuts/cashews.
• 2 tbsp shredded coconut.
• 1 Red Chilli finely sliced.

Dressing:

• Half to 1 lime.
• 3 tbsp Fish Sauce.
• 1-2 tbsp palm sugar.
• 1 -2 red chillies finely sliced.
• Kaffir Lime leaf very finely sliced for garnish.

Let’s Cook!

  1. Set a pot of water to boil on the stove. Add shrimp and boil for just a few minutes, until the shrimp turn pink and are plump and firm to the touch. Drain and set aside to cool.
  2. Place shredded coconut in a dry frying pan or wok over medium-high heat and stir until coconut turns light golden brown and fragrant. Tip coconut into a small bowl to cool and set aside. Repeat with shallots frying in a little oil until golden and crispy tip into small bowl and set aside to cool.
  3. Prepare your grapefruit or pomelo, removing as much of the white peel as possible from the fruit. Break into bite-size pieces – 3 to 4 cups is a good amount. Set prepared fruit in a salad bowl.
  4. Add to the bowl: cucumber, basil/mint, coriander, and fresh chilli.
  5. Combine all dressing ingredients together in a cup, stirring well to dissolve the sugar.

To put the salad together: Add shrimp to the salad bowl, and then pour over the dressing. Toss well to combine. Add most of the toasted coconut, shallots and nuts, reserving a little for garnishing, then toss again. Taste-test the salad for a balance of sweet/sour/spicy/salty. Adjust to your liking, adding more sugar if too sour. For more depth of flavour, add a little Fish Sauce. Your salad is now ready to serve. Top with reserved coconut, nuts and shredded lime leaf.

Enjoy!

Tip: Like most Thai salad dressings, this is an oil-free dressing, so it doesn’t appear to ‘cling’ as well as oil-based dressings, naturally collecting at the bottom of your salad bowl. This isn’t a problem – just be sure to toss a little more than you would for a regular salad in order to saturate ingredients with the dressing.

This salad is better served and eaten immediately, the fresher the better. If preparing for a party, keep the dressing apart from the salad until you’re ready to eat, and then toss them together just before serving.

I do hope you enjoy as this is one of my favourite salads, I do shred my Pomelo much finer though rather than having too chunky. But as with anything it is personal preference.

Cauliflower is one of my favourite vegetables it can be lightly steamed and if you make a cheese sauce then it makes a lovely side dish sometimes I also mix the florets with broccoli florets and make a broccoli and cauliflower cheese…

You can turn the cauliflower into rice which is very popular now…

And all you need is a Cauliflower and an Onion. A little Coconut oil to cook or other oil of your choice. Sea Salt and a squeeze Lemon Juice.

Let’s Cook

  1. Either grate or blitz in a food processor (but not too fine) you want some texture.
  2. Heat pan and keep pan HOT as you don’t want Cauliflower to steam and go soggy.
  3. Use a tbsp of Coconut Oil and put in the desired amount of Cauliflower and onion mix.
  4. Cook quickly and then season and add lemon juice.

All in all, it only takes a few minutes to cook….. a bit longer if more than one portion but keep pan hot.

If you wish to vary the taste you can add 1 tsp of Cumin seeds to oil before adding Cauliflower if you are eating Indian Food.

If you require colour if eating Mexican……. then add 1/2 tsp turmeric to oil and tsp tomato puree.

This is very versatile and just use your imagination and add any herbs and spices that you like.

To store...I make a batch and keep in the fridge for during the week but keep in a glass jar or zip lock bag…I think plastic containers may make it sweat too much…..Enjoy…. and if you are cutting the carbs it is an ideal and yummy substitute for rice and I love rice…… eat it all the time but happily substitute this as I am also a cauliflower lover.

The cauliflower is truly versatile… I love it! X

How about making a cauliflower Pizza base?

I love this more than my family do but then I am not a huge pizza fan I don’t really like pizza bases so tend to just pick of the topping so this cauliflower base suits my taste and I can crisp it up a bit..and viola something I really like…

Ingredients:

• 1 medium head cauliflower.
• 1 egg, large.
• 1 tsp Italian seasoning (dried oregano or basil)
• 1/8 tsp salt.
• 1/4 tsp ground black pepper.
• 1/2 cup Parmesan or Mozzarella cheese, grated/shredded.
• Cooking spray, I make my own spray I don’t do bought oil in spray cans…I have a little stainless steel one for oil.

Let’s Cook!

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F/190 C and line a baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper.
  2. Rinse cauliflower, remove the outer leaves, separate into florets and chop into smaller pieces.
  3. Process the cauliflower in a food processor in 2 batches, until a “rice” texture forms.
  4. Transfer cauliflower rice on a prepared baking sheet and bake for 10 mins this just removes some of the moisture.
  5. Remove cooked cauliflower rice from the oven, transfer to a bowl lined with a double/triple layered cheesecloth or linen towel, and let cool for 5 minutes.
  6. Then squeeze the liquid out of the ball as hard as you can. Be patient and do this a few times until barely any liquid comes out.
  7. Increase oven temperature to 4 degrees F/200 C. Then in a medium mixing bowl whisk the egg with dried herbs, salt and pepper for 10 seconds.
  8. Add cheese and squeezed cauliflower mix very well with a spatula until combined.
  9. Line the same baking sheet with new parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
  10. Transfer cauliflower dough to the middle and flatten with your hands until thin pizza crust forms.
  11. Bake for 20 minutes, carefully flip with a spatula and bake for a few more minutes. Top with your favourite toppings and bake again until cheese on top turns golden brown.

Slice and enjoy!

This recipe was one that intrigued me because individually I loved the ingredients except for the egg plant and even though I eat egg plant it is not my favourite.

It is an Indian spiced egg plant salad with mango, tomatoes and lentils … It turned out to be one of the nicest salads ever and had a few ingredients which my hubby doesn’t eat ever like egg plant, tomatoes and lentils and he liked it…

Spiced Egg Plant Salad with tomatoes, mango and lentils.

• 4 tablespoons peanut oil or olive oil, divided
• 2½ teaspoons chilli powder, divided
• 2½ teaspoons curry powder, divided
• 2 medium eggplants ( ¾ pound each), trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
• ⅓ cup lemon or lime juice, plus more if desired
• ¼ cup prepared salsa
• ¼ cup honey
• ¼ teaspoon salt
• ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
• 1½ cups cooked lentils or one 15-ounce can, rinsed
• 2 bunches spring (green) onions, coarsely chopped (reserve 2 tablespoons for garnish)
• 4 cups torn romaine lettuce or white cabbage
• 2 large ripe mangoes, peeled and diced
• ¼ cup coarsely chopped roasted walnuts or cashews
• ¼ cup chopped fresh coriander

Let’s Cook!

  1. Preheat oven to 500°F.
  2. Combine 1 tbsp oil with 2 tsp each chilli powder and curry powder in a large bowl. Add eggplant and toss well. Spread the eggplant on a large, rimmed baking sheet. Roast, stirring halfway through, until tender, for about 15 minutes.
  3. Thoroughly combine the remaining 3 tbsp oil, remaining ½ tsp each chilli powder and curry powder, ⅓ cup lemon (or lime) juice, salsa, honey, salt and pepper in a large bowl.
  4. Add the roasted eggplant, lentils and spring onions; gently toss to combine. Taste and season with more pepper and/or lemon (or lime) juice, as required.
  5. Serve the salad on a bed of romaine, topped with mango, nuts, cilantro and the reserved 2 tbsp of spring onions.
  6. I used white cabbage and we ate by adding some salad to the cabbage and eating them both together…
  7. To cook the lentils: Put ½ cup red or brown lentils in a medium saucepan add 1 ½ cups water then bring to the boil over a medium heat, reduce the heat, cover and cook, stirring occasionally until the lentils are tender…12-20 minutes( red lentils ) cook quicker. This makes 1 ½ cups lentils.

I actually think this would go equally as well with pineapple or even orange…It is a lovely recipe with your vitamin C coming from your fruit and tomatoes even egg plant contains some Vitamin C as do chillies and of course you are getting fibre from the egg plant and the lentils so overall a very healthy dish to which you could add some chicken or fish…

Our verdict… I made half the recipe which is what I always do when I am testing a recipe. I just made a small amount of fresh salsa but all together the flavours complemented each other nicely much better than I originally thought and the honey just brought it all together. I used japans egg plants the long purple variety as I don’t think they are so bitter as the Thai green egg plants.

I hope you have enjoyed these recipes showing how you can include fruit and vegetables into your diet to ensure you get adequate Vitamin C.

My thanks to Carol for preparing these delicious dishes to ensure you and your family are obtaining adequate amounts of vitamin C..

Next time.. we turn our attention to essential minerals.. I hope you will join us.

About your hosts…

About Sally Cronin

I am a qualified nutritional therapist with twenty-four years experience working with clients in Ireland and the UK as well as being a health consultant on radio in Spain.

Although I write a lot of fiction, I actually wrote my first two books on health, the first one, Size Matters, a weight loss programme 20 years ago, based on my own weight loss of 154lbs. My first clinic was in Ireland, the Cronin Diet Advisory Centre and my second book, Just Food for Health was written as my client’s workbook. Since then I have written a men’s health manual, and anti-aging programme, articles for magazines, radio programmes and posts here on Smorgasbord.

About Carol Taylor

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetables ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use have to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: Amazon US

Connect to Carol – Blog: Carol Cooks 2 – Twitter: @CarolCooksTwo – Facebook: Carol Taylor

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up – March 28th – April 3rd 2022 – Oscars, Chart Hits 1991, Cruising, B12, Book reviews, Podcast, Humour


Welcome to the round up of posts from the week that you might have missed on Smorgasbord.

I hope everyone is doing well. There seems to be little change in the main headlines in the last week, apart from celebrities behaving badly which considering all that is going on in the world seems very ill advised.

I love movies and I used to look forward to the Oscars and would stay up late to watch the whole red carpet and award ceremony. The last few years however, it seems to have become a traversty of its origins, which were to honour those within the industry for their excellence.

Although I have to say that many of the fashion designers seem to be getting their own back for previous slights or insults from certain celebrities and dressing them in some appalling outfits, and no doubt charging a fortune for them.

I also think the $140,000 gift bags sent to 28 of the top nominees for Oscars did not send the right message any year let alone this one – The Academy does not send the gift bags but since it has become a tradition, they seem to condone it.

If you would like to know what the selected nominees received here is a list courtesy of CNBC.com

The most expensive item in this year’s bag is a $50,000 three-night stay at Turin Castle in Scotland, inspired by Denzel Washington’s “Best Actor” nomination for “The Tragedy of Macbeth.” Guests who accept the offer will have full access to the 17th century castle, complete with butler service and a bagpiper welcome when they arrive.

The bags also include 52 other items and experiences. Here are a few highlights:

  • A $12,000 “Celebrity Arms” liposuction procedure from cosmetic surgeon Dr. Thomas Su
  • The title of “Lord” or “Lady of Glencoe,” along with a small plot of land in Scotland
  • $25,000 worth of home renovations from Los Angeles-based Maison Construction
  • An assortment of “flavor wrapped” popcorn packages from Opopop
  • Up to $10,000 worth of “treatments and rejuvenation procedures” from Dr. Konstantin Vasyukevich
  • A $15,000 four-night stay for two at the Golden Door luxury resort and spa in Escondico, Calif.
  • A small batch tea gift set from Oprah-approved The Chai Box
  • A $1,200 life coaching session with wellness expert Kayote Joseph 

Clearly many of the celebrities will not be availing themselves of all the gift items but the total worth is almost $4 million. Having said that some of the gifts require a high tolerance to pain! Perhaps some of the recipients might auction their gift bags off for a good cause!

There is a sting in the tail as those who do accept and use the gifts will have a price to pay as they are liable for tax…

Anyway… enough griping…

My thanks as always to William Price King for the music, Debby Gies who shared her excellent tips for enjoying a cruising holiday and Carol Taylor for her wonderful recipes to ensure we are getting sufficient B12 and Vitamin E.

Debby Gies has returned to the frozen north from Mexico and has shared one of the reviews from books she read on her break…

Sunday book review Flowers and Stone by Jan Sikes

Carol Taylor has had a packed week and here is the link to her round up with something for everyone…

Monday Musings, Health, A-Z World Cuisine Bulgaria , Food Substitutes and Saturday Snippets where “Bluebell” is my prompt.

On with the show…

Chart Hits 1991 Part Two – Extreme, Lenny Kravitz, Whitney Houston, Bryan Adams

William Price King meets the Music Legends – Dionne Warwick – Into the 1970s

The Travel Column Rewind with D.G. Kaye – #Cruises Part Two – Ship Tips, Deals and Dining

Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiency – Vitamin B12 combined with Vitamin E – Beef, Broccoli, Eggs, Bananas and Wholegrains

1993 – 40th, MR2, M People, Mrs Doubtfire

East London on Flipboard | East London, Croydon, Fraud

1994 – New Responsibilities, Toronto, family loss, Celine Dion and Four Weddings and a Funeral

Food Therapy Rewind- Beans – 12,000 years of history that we know about by Sally Cronin

-#Fantasy – A Threat from the Past (The White Dragon Saga) by Paul Cude

Book Reviews Round Up March 2022 – #Romance Jan Sikes, #Scifi Richard Dee, #Thriller Stevie Turner, #Africa Wilbur Smith, #Poetry Frank Prem, #Fantasy Paul Cude

#Spotlight Sharon Marchisello/ Marie Sinadjin, #Refugees John Howell, #Writers Gwen Plano, #Countrymusic Jan Sikes, #Peekytoecrab New Vintage Kitchen

#Fantasy – Good Liniment (The Hat Book 5) by C.S. Boyack

Share an Extract from your latest book – #YA #Fantasy – Golden Healer (The Curse of Time Book 2) by M. J. Mallon

Personal Recommendations – #Children – #Travel Darlene Foster, #Safety Miriam Hurdle, #Mystery Elizabeth Merry

Personal Recommendations -#Paranormal Jan Sikes, #Historical Ailish Sinclair, #Poetry Balroop Singh

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Car Expenses and The Ostrich

– Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Dog owning and Clever Cats

 

Thanks for all your support and I hope you will join me again next week… thanks Sally.