Smorgasbord Health – Cook from Scratch with Sally and Carol Taylor – Pumpkin Seeds


Welcome to the series where I provide the nutritional health benefits for a food and Carol Taylor works all week in the kitchen to provide delicious recipes to include in your regular diet. I hope you will go over to her new blog which she has just started: http://myhealthyretirement.com/welcome-to-orienthailiving-my-first-post/ and discover more about her beautiful home in Thailand.

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 20 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 and I also use 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.

Time now to hand you over to the creative Carol Taylor with some recipes that elevate these simple seeds into family favourites.

 Pumpkin Seeds a multitude of ways.

Packed with vitamins, minerals and lots of fibre is the Pumpkin seed, now how many of you just throw them in the bin, and don’t give it a second thought as to just what you are throwing away??? Me for one….

I can also hear you saying well they look different to the ones we see in a packet in the shops…Yes they do! The dark seeds we buy in the shops are the inner kernel and quite tricky to extract…I used to feed our African Grey Parrot on these and it was fascinating to watch him hook the end of his beak in the seed and he got inside… no trouble…He also did it very delicately I will add…

How to cook those seeds.

Wash all the pith and soft pulp off them, and then pick the small to medium size seeds, as the large ones can be quite tough to eat.

Boil the seeds for 5-10 minutes, drain and let them dry …I normally do mine either in the morning if I want to cook in the evening or vice versa.

When you are ready to cook then toss the seeds in 1-2 tbsp oil and season…

You can season them with paprika, chilli, cumin, rock salt and pepper, brown sugar and honey or olive oil and maple syrup then sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon…

I promise you, you will not be able to stop eating these they are scrumptious.

If there are any left then keep in an airtight container and eat within 2/3 days as they tend to lose their crunch.

Sprinkled over Salads or vegetables pumpkin seeds are healthier than nuts.

Fig, nut & pumpkin seed bread.

Ingredients:

  • 400ml hot strong black tea
  • 100g dried fig , hard stalks removed, thinly sliced
  • 140g sultana
  • 50g porridge oat
  • 200g self-raising wholemeal flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 100g mixed nuts (almonds, walnuts, Brazils, hazelnuts), plus 50g for the topping
  • 1 tbsp golden linseed
  • 1 tbsp sesame seed, plus 2 tsp to sprinkle
  • 25g pumpkin seed
  • 1 large egg

Let’s Cook!

Heat oven to 170C/150C fan/gas 3½. Pour the tea into a large bowl and stir in the figs, sultanas and oats. Set aside to soak.

Line the base and sides of a 1kg loaf tin with baking parchment. Mix together the flour, baking powder, nuts and seeds. Beat the egg into the cooled fruit mixture, and then stir the dry ingredients into the wet. Pour into the tin, then level the top and scatter with the extra nuts and sesame seeds.

Bake for 1 hr, then cover the top with foil and bake for 15 mins more until a skewer inserted into the centre of the loaf comes out clean. Remove from the tin to cool, but leave the parchment on until cold.

This bread is lovely cut into slices, spread with ricotta and serve with fruit.

It will keep in the fridge for 1 month, or can be frozen in slices which I do as hubby doesn’t like anything with seeds

Or you can make a lovely pumpkin butter like Sally has suggested in her section of this post and very nice it is…

Pumpkin seed, chocolate and cranberry Cookies.

 

Ingredients

  • 200 gm Butter, softened
  • ¼ cup Peanut butter, chunky style
  • 1 cup Brown sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking soda
  • 2 cups Rolled oats
  • 1 cup Dark chocolate, chopped
  • 100 gm Pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup dried cranberries

Let’s Cook!

Heat oven to 190C.

Beat butter and peanut butter together. Beat in sugar then egg and vanilla essence.

Sift in flour and baking soda. Add rolled oats, chocolate, pumpkin seeds and cranberries and mix to combine

Roll mixture in 2-tablespoon amounts into balls and place on an oven tray lined with baking paper.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on a wire cake rack.

Enjoy!

You can also sprinkle some seasoned pumpkin seeds over a lovely bowl of warming pumpkin soup… Very nice…

I hope you have enjoyed this post on the health benefits of pumpkin seeds and never ever, throw them in the bin again…

I know I won’t!

A huge thanks to Carol for providing these wonderful recipes this week, especially as she had a busy schedule. If you have a special way that you prepare pumpkin seeds then please share in the comments. thanks Sally

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 Health – Cook from Scratch with Sally and Carol Taylor – Bean, 12000 years of history.


Welcome to Sally and Carol Taylor Cook from Scratch.. Actually Carol Taylor does the cooking and I get to tell you about the health benefits of our featured foods.

Beans can be tricky so Carol has been working away in the kitchen to give you some fool proof recipes to try so that you can include this very nutrient dense food. And to start us off today here is my contribution to the dinner…

Mention the fact that you are an ardent bean lover and people automatically give you a wide berth. Unfortunately this very nutritious food group has developed a rather anti-social reputation over the years but prepared and cooked correctly beans can overcome their wind producing properties.

HISTORY OF THE BEAN.

There is evidence going back nearly 12,000 years that peas were part of the staple diet in certain cultures and certainly natives of Peru and Mexico were cultivating beans as a crop 9,000 years ago. It is likely that they were one of the first crops to be planted when man ceased to be nomadic and settled into communities.

There are many types of bean used as a staple food in different cultures around the world including Black beans, Chickpeas, Kidney Beans, Navy Beans and Soybeans. In Asia where consumption of soybean products is very high it is regarded as one of the best preventative medicines that you can eat.

WHAT ARE THE MAIN HEALTH BENEFITS OF BEANS?

For anyone suffering high cholesterol levels, blood pressure, heart disease, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, Diverticulitis, colon cancer, diabetes or iron deficiency, beans are definitely on the healing foods list. One of the main health benefits of eating beans is their high fibre content.

Although fibre is not exactly up there on everyone’s favourite foods list it is extremely important to our overall health. Fibre is carbohydrate that cannot be digested and there are two types, water-soluble and water insoluble. Primarily water-soluble fibre comes from oatmeal, oat bran, nuts and seeds, fruit and legumes that include peas, lentils and beans. The insoluble fibre is mainly found in wholegrains, wheat bran, seeds, root vegetables, cucumbers, courgettes, celery and tomatoes.

Fibre acts like a vacuum cleaner, travelling through the blood stream and intestines collecting cholesterol plaque, toxins, waste products from normal bodily functions and anything else that should not be there.

Provided you do not pile high fat sauces and butter onto this group of foods they can be a very healthy aid to weight loss as fibre has no calories and the foods containing it are generally low in fat and high in nutrients.

WHAT ELSE IS IN BEANS THAT IS HEALTHY.

Beans are packed with nutrients as well as fibre including Vitamin B1 (thiamin) copper, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus and tryptophan. The combination of nutrients will help boost your immune system, balance blood sugar levels, lower your risk of heart disease and help protect you against cancer.

Vitamin B1 (thiamin) is essential in the metabolism of carbohydrates and for a healthy nervous system. Every cell in the body requires this vitamin to form the fuel the body runs on, ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate).

Copper is an essential trace mineral needed to absorb and utilise iron and also assist in the production of collagen.

Folate is a B Vitamin essential for cell replication and growth. It is needed for our nervous system and heart health as folate helps lower homocysteine levels in the blood, a leading contributory factor in heart disease.

Magnesium is an essential mineral needed for bone, protein and fatty acid formation, forming new cells, activating the B vitamins, relaxing muscles, clotting blood and forming ATP. The secretion and action of insulin also needs magnesium as does the correct balance of calcium in the body.

Iron is an integral part of the oxygen-carrying haemoglobin in the blood, which is why a deficiency can cause fatigue and ill health.

Manganese boosts energy and the immune system and molybdenum another trace mineral helps detox the body of sulphites a commonly used preservative in processed food and one that many people have a sensitivity to.

Tryptophan is an amino acid that is critical in the manufacture of serotonin a neurotransmitter that affects our mental wellbeing.

PREPARING BEANS TO AVOID THE WIND FACTOR.

If you are not used to fibre then you need to introduce it into your diet over a period of days. This guideline applies to eating beans as people who eat them regularly seem to have less of a problem. There are a number of guidelines to ensure that you receive all of the benefits and none of the more anti-social side effects.

  • 1. Soak your dried beans for at least 6 hours before cooking. Change the water several times.
  • 2. Put the beans in a large pot and cover with cold unsalted water usually 3 to 6 times the amount of beans. Bring to the boil and reduce to a simmer. Drain the beans after 30 minutes and replace the water. Bring back to the boil and then simmer.
  • 3. Skim off any foam that rises to the surface of the water.
  • 4. When the beans have softened add some salt, as this will bring out there flavour. If you add salt at the beginning of cooking it can make the beans tougher. If you are on a low sodium diet then be careful about how much salt you add or use and alternative.
  • 5. When the beans are cooked you can prepare in a number of ways. Include in brown rice dishes; stir-fry with a little olive oil, seasonings and favourite spices.
  • 6. A lovely way to eat beans is in a casserole with tomatoes, onions, garlic, olive oil, carrots, potatoes, celery and vegetable stock.
  • 7. Make your own baked beans with homemade tomato sauce and serve on jacket potatoes or on toast.
  • 8. You can blend with other ingredients and make hamburgers, meatloaves and pates.

Now it is time to hand you over to the cooking expert who has created some wonderful ways to include beans regularly in your diet.  Here’s Carol…………

Full of Beans by Carol Taylor

Beans are such a versatile legume…it is the name used for the seeds of several plants that includes beans, peas and lentils and they are among the most versatile and nutritious foods available and if you have perused Sally’s writing before you got to my recipes you will know just how beneficial to our health and wellbeing they are.

Sally has even included a little tip which may make the air surrounding you be a little less sulphuric…ha ha…Methinks we have all been on the receiving end of that one!

Here in Thailand beans are included in most Thai diets and come in many guises some I had never seen or heard of before living here and have now come to love and one which is very aptly called the Stink Bean grew on me as after eating these your urine will smell very much like the smell you get after consuming asparagus.

Firstly my time in the kitchen over the last few days has been fraught to say the very least and also hilarious….My first effort at making Baked Beans ended in a culinary disaster…and I forgot to take pictures but trust me the pot was encrusted with burnt beans and the smell invaded everything…My other half who was left in charge while I went to the hairdressers…Big Mistake… went on the defensive…

When he managed to get his nose out of his book (why) after all those years of not reading anything did I encourage him to read??? He had a simple task og keeping an eye on the pot of beans… As soon as I walked in I could smell the burning. The answer to my “ Could you not smell the burning?” Was.. and I quote “I thought that was a cooking smell “

Those who know me don’t very often see me stunned into silence…..I was just speechless …If the volcano had erupted it would still be spewing forth…lol

Take 2.

As these beans have very little cooking juice they need constant stirring and watching (and folks) let me tell you I have made the mistakes so you will not…. See how good I am to you!
I set the timer on my phone to go off every 5 minutes… My office is in my bedroom and up 2 flights of a marble staircase… I forgot how quick I could get down and up to reset the timer and at my age…I was impressed and so was little Lily who turned it into a game…I got 2 hours of up and down the stairs which was good exercise …I felt invigorated..truly… I knew if I burnt these beans I would never ever live it down.

The result:

They were ok…took ages to soften and so next time I hope they will be just perfect and not take so long to cook so I have slightly rewritten the recipe…. And next time I make these baked beans I will not only pre-soak them but will be pre-cooking them in water before adding the ingredients…You live and learn don’t you???

Baked Beans:

Firstly, cover the beans with water and soak the beans overnight. Secondly cover the beans with fresh water and cook for at least 2 hours until they are nearly soft it will depend on the age of the beans as apparently the ones you buy of of the supermarket shelves can be years old so it is best to buy online or from a health food store as they have a bigger turnover and the beans are likely to be somewhat younger.

Now we can add our tomatoes and seasonings and cook for a further 2 hours or until soft.

Ingredients:

  • 250 gm Navy Beans or haricot beans
  • 200 gm passata or good chopped tomatoes
  • 20 ml Apple cider vinegar
  • 10 ml Soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp raw honey
  • 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 3-4 sprigs of fresh thyme or other herbs
  • A dash of olive oil
  • Salt to season (Don’t) add salt until near the end of the cooking time.

This was my basic bean recipe and I have also included underneath a few ideas for variations.

Let’s Cook!

In an oven proof dish mix all the ingredients except for the salt together and pour over your pre soaked and pre- cooked beans. Cover with the lid and cook at 175C for about 2 hours or until soft. Don’t forget to stir occasionally and add water if required.

Enjoy!

Oh! And a little cooking tip…
Never throw away the liquid you pre- cook your beans in it makes an idea base for soups.

Now for a few ideas for some additions to your basic bean mix…

Apple-Cheddar Baked Beans: Core and cut up 1 tart apple (such as Granny Smith) and stir it into the bean mixture before baking. Sprinkle the beans with 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded smoked cheddar cheese after baking.

Hawaiian Baked Beans: Stir one 8-ounce can pineapple titbits, undrained, into the bean mixture before baking. Bake the beans uncovered for the last 10 minutes.

Apricot Baked Beans: Substitute apricot preserves for the honey, and stir 1/2 cup coarsely chopped dried apricots into the bean mixture before baking.

Maple-Pecan Baked Beans: Substitute maple syrup for the honey. Sprinkle 1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans over the bean mixture before serving.

Another great idea for beans is a lovely mixed bean salad with my favourite feta cheese.

Mix black beans, kidney beans and great northern beans, dice some fresh tomatoes with green chilli peppers, feta cheese, red onion, Greek seasoning, and 2 cloves of garlic finely diced in a bowl. Whisk olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey mustard, and Worcestershire sauce in a separate bowl; pour over the bean mixture. Toss to coat.

This is lovely served with some grilled fish, a nice chicken breast cooked in garlic butter or a piece of medium rare steak.

This can be whipped up in minutes with ingredients you probably have in your fridge or store cupboard.

Ideal when you really don’t want to cook.

Hummus:

My home-made Tahini is now made and in the fridge. Click the link below for the recipe.
https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2015/06/16/happiness-often-sneaks-in-through-a-door-you-didnt-know-you-left-open/

Ingredients:

  • 3tbsp Tahini Paste
  • I can of chick peas or you can use soaked dried, cooked chickpeas.
  • 2tbsp fresh Lemon Juice
  • 2tbsp Olive Oil,
  • 1 clove Garlic,
  • 1/2 tsp ground Cumin
  • ½ -1 tsp salt

Let’s Cook!

Combine your tahini paste with the lemon juice and blitz. Add olive oil, cumin, salt and garlic and blitz. Add half the drained can of chick peas and blitz 1-2 minutes.

Add other half of Chick peas and blitz again for 1-2 minutes.

Put in suitable container or serving bowl drizzle with 1 tbsp Olive Oil and sprinkle with Paprika.

Voila it’s now ready to eat with Sliced pitta bread or cut up vegetables of your choice.

This will keep up to 1 week in the fridge.

Wing Beans:

This lovely fluted edged little bean (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus), Is also known as the Goa bean, asparagus pea, four-angled bean, four-cornered bean, Manila bean, Mauritius bean, and winged pea.

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

All you need is Wing beans, garlic, a small chilli chopped( optional) and some seasoning sauce I use Oyster sauce….Which I believe is available worldwide now in Asian stores.

Chop your wing beans in ½ inch pieces on the diagonal; chop your garlic and chilli if used.

Add a little coconut oil to a pan quickly stir fry the garlic and chilli add the beans and stir fry 1-2 minutes add 1-2 tbsp oyster sauce and stir fry for another minute and viola a lovely little dish which I eat for a quick lunch with some steamed rice or it can be served as an accompliament to a main meal.

Enjoy!

Stink Beans:

This recipe is for one of the most popular beans in Thailand called the Stink Bean it is often eaten raw with a spicy dip and also stir fried with prawns , chicken or Pork.

Ingredients

  • 400 grams shrimp (you can also make this recipe with chicken or pork)
  • 2 – 3 heaping tbsp Thai red curry paste
  • 1 cup of shelled stink beans (I used 6 pods, and you can use more or less)
  • ½ tsp shrimp paste
  • ½ tbsp oyster sauce
  • ½ tbsp sugar (This is the Thai way, but I use less or none)
  • 6 – 8 kaffir lime leaves
  • 2 tbsp oil for frying

Let’s Cook!

Prepare the shrimp by taking off the head and peeling the shell, and then devein them. If you want to prepare your shrimp Thai style, peel the body, but leave the tail on.

Stink beans grow in a long twisted hard pods, so the first thing to do is peel the stink beans out of the outer shell. The skin is quite tough so it’s easiest to take a sharp knife and slice the bean, almost in half first. Then peel back the skin and remove the stink bean inside. You’ll also see an inner, beige colored skin that coats the stink beans, and you want to remove that too.

Go through all the pods and remove all the stink beans – this will probably take a few minutes.

Put your wok or frying pan on a medium heat and add about 2 tbsp of oil. I normally like to use less oil when I stir fry Thai food, but with this stink bean curry recipe, you really need to add some oil so the curry paste gets nice and fragrant when frying and doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

When your oil is sizzling hot, add in the curry paste, first start with 2 tbsp. – you can always come back and add more later if it’s not flavourful enough. Then add about ½ tsp of shrimp paste.

Stir fry the curry paste, working it into the oil, and scraping it off the bottom of the pan. Immediately you should start to smell those beautiful chillies, the lemongrass and the turmeric. Keep stir frying for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, making sure the paste doesn’t burn, but is nice and fragrant.

Add the shrimp, and stir fry continuously for about 30 seconds. The shrimp should pretty quickly start to turn from transparent to pink orange in colour. If the curry paste starts to get dry, you can toss in a splash of water, and that should give you some liquid to work with as well as a little extra sauce.

Then toss in the stink beans, and stir fry for about another 30 seconds or so. You want to keep stirring hard so the curry paste doesn’t stick to the pan.

Season with ½ tbsp of oyster sauce and ½ tbsp of sugar (the normal Thai way is to use sugar, so I showed it this way in the recipe, BUT, when I cook it myself I normally omit the sugar or use just a tiny bit – so up to you how much sugar you want to add).

Again, if your stink beans ( goong pad sataw) get dry, add another splash of water, and then stir fry for just another minute.

The final step is to take 6 – 8 kaffir lime leaves, and tear them off the stems directly into the curry. When you tear the kaffir lime leaves, it will release their flavour. Stir fry for just 10 seconds, and then turn off the heat.

Immediately put it onto a serving plate, and you’re ready to start eating.

Serve with some steamed rice…

Enjoy!

Lastly we have a ..Chilli Con Carne of which there are many variations. Most of which I think are a generic chilli as a proper Mexican chilli is normally chunks of beef and no tomatoes and actually bears little resemblance to the Chilli Con Carne we know and love…

Ingredients

  • 500 gm lean minced Beef ( I use pork) as I can’t get minced beef here.
  • 1 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 red or yellow pepper chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped2 inch piece of fresh ginger finely chopped
  • 1-3 heaped tsp hot chilli powder (or 1 level tbsp if you only have mild)
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • 1 beef stock cube or 1 pt of fresh made beef or vegetable stock
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • ½ tsp dried marjoram
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 410g can red kidney beans, drained

Let’s Cook!

Put the olive oil in a large pan and heat add the chopped onions, garlic, ginger, bay leaves and cook for 5 minutes until the onions are translucent.I like to add my cumin seeds with the onions as it brings out their full flavour and we love cumin.

Add the minced meat and cook , stirring until nicely browned.Add the tomatoes, stock, peppers and tomato puree stirring in well and bring to a soft simmer.

Add the paprika, marjoram and sugar. Cook for 20 minutes now this is where I taste and add more chilli and usually more cumin seeds and then add the drained kidney beans and cook for a further 30 minutes.

Serve with steamed rice and sour cream dusted with a little smoked paprika.

Enjoy!

I hope you enjoyed these bean recipes and I would like to thank Sally once again for allowing me to add my recipes to her wonderful posts on the health benefits of the food we eat.

As always I am so grateful to Carol for the time and effort that she puts into preparing these recipes, including misunderstandings with her assistant!  She is a treasure.

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!

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Please feel free to share thanks Sally

If you have missed previous posts in the Cook from Scratch series you can find them here: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/cook-from-scratch-with-sally-and-carol-recipes/