Category Archives: Fruity Fridays

Fruity Friday…Thai Fruits…

Fruity Friday Thai Fruit

Fruity Friday and today I am going to post about fruit which is common or uncommon to find where we live here in Thailand…..

The first fruit, in particular, is a  fruit that is not a common fruit and quite rare.

With its prickly outer shell which is NOT edible this fruit grows on climbing vines. Going from green to a dark orange when it is ripe this fruit has a short season of only 2 months from December to January. It is quite a rare fruit and found on local markets in Southern Thailand. It is the soft pulp surrounding the edible seeds which you eat. The seeds are not only edible but used in traditional Chinese medicines.

It is used to treat eye conditions, burns, skin problems and wounds.

The juice makes a healthy drink which is said to be good for the eyes, immunity, skin and heart health.

The taste is a cross between a tomato and a ripe papaya it is also commonly called the Gac fruit.

Its other names are  Chanbada Fruit or spiny bitter gourd.

Today the Gac fruit extracts are used in very popular skin care supplements around the world.

Rich in antioxidants and beta-carotene it is said to contain 70 times more than in tomatoes or zeaxanthin.

It has the highest concentration of beta-carotene than any other known fruit or vegetable as much as 10 times more than the carrot.

Once in the body, it converts to Vitamin A and is said to have a variety of protective properties.

Due to the fruits magnificent orange hue, it is often grown as an ornamental plant.

It is also used to make a delicious deep fried sweet cooked in coconut batter. You will only find this sweet in the south of Thailand as the fruit is quite rare which also makes it expensive. It also tends to be found in local gardens and not really grown commercially.

Its brilliant orange colour is very attractive and it is also cooked in  Khao Soi( Sticky Rice) flavoured with cinnamon and served at New Year Celebrations and weddings.

Gac fruit

Image Credit: James Morris a friend who has given me a free licence to use this picture.

Thank you, James 🙂

The next fruit is:-

The Matum fruit which has a very hard shell and you wouldn’t want one dropped on your head from a great height.

It comes from a gum bearing mid-sized subtropical fruit tree. It has many other names such as golden apple, Indian quince, and holy fruit. It is said to have many medicinal benefits.

The fruits medicinal purposes are very high when the fruit has just ripened. It has a high tannin content which makes it suitable for the treatment of cholera and dysentery.

A hot poultice of the fruit leaves are said to be an effective treatment for various inflammations, a leaf decoction is also used as an aid for asthma.

The root, leaves, and bark are also effective when used on a snakebite.

More often than not the fruit is sliced, dried and a thirst quenching tea can be made by steeping the dried slices in hot water, it is a very popular drink in Thailand.

The fragrant flesh is also eaten with Keow Neow…sticky rice. The young leaves and shoots are eaten as a vegetable here in Thailand and used to season food in Indonesia.

It is also a prototype of today’s Orange.

matum tree

Images: My own.

The Mangosteen Garcinia Mangostana has a very hard outer shell and is a widely eaten and available fruit here in Thailand.

When open it is similar with its segments to an Orange. It has a thick outer skin which is about 1/4 of an inch thick. If picked straight from the tree it is easier to open because as the fruit ages it dries and loses water thus the outer shell quickly hardens.

Keeping it in a bag in the fridge slows down the moisture loss.

It grows naturally in South East Asia and is known for its sweet peachy tasting flesh. Its seeds are bitter and should not be eaten.

When young ..freshly picked from the tree the seeds are white but turn brown as the fruit ages so it is a good indication of how fresh your Mangosteen is.

To open the fruit using a thin sharp serrated knife carefully cut around the circumference of the fruit. Then twist to open.

mangosteen-showing cut fruit half

Warning: Be very careful not to cut yourself as the shell is very hard which may cause the knife to slip.

Low in calories and high in fibre with a high Potassium content the Mangosteen also has healthy amounts of manganese and magnesium which is good for intestinal health.

It is known as one of the 5 not so typical fruits noted for its life-changing potential. Scientists believe that an antioxidant in Mangosteen can cause cell death in cancer.

But as with everything we consume moderation is key. Its high fructose levels can be harmful to humans.

Thai-style Mangosteen Clafoutis recipe:

  • 5 fresh Mangosteen opened and segmented( leave seeds in)
  • 1/2 cup sugar plus 1 tbsp.
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup rice flour ( all purpose flour) can be used.
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup coconut milk.
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 tsp grated lime/lemon zest.
  • 1tsp of vanilla and coconut essences.
  • Icing sugar to finish when serving.

Let’s Cook!

Pre-heat oven to 350F.generously grease a 1 1/2 qt casserole dish or you can use individual ramekins.

Prepare Mangosteen by removing from the outer shell and dividing into segments(leave the stone in)

Toss the fruit with 1 tsp cornflour and 1 tbsp of sugar. Arrange the fruit in the bottom of the dish/dishes.

In a large bowl or food processor whisk eggs with salt and sugar. Then whisk in flour. Add coconut milk, lime zest, vanilla and coconut essences and whisk to blend together.

Pour the mixture into the prepared dish/dishes, the fruit may float but that ok.

Place dish in the oven, if using ramekins they need to be placed in a tin/dish containing water which goes 1/3 way up the Ramekins.

Bake for 55-60 minutes until the middles are set and the top is lightly browned.

Serve warm with a light dusting of icing sugar with ice cream or whipped cream.

Warning: Advise guests to be aware that there are stones in the fruit.

Enjoy!

Thai Cherry and pickled Thai cherries 

thai cherries 1

The Thai cherry or mountain cherries as they are also called are found in East Asia, South Asia and South East Asia. They are from the family Rosaceae and the genus Prunus.

To me, they also look very much like a tomato but there the resemblance ends

The name in Thai is naang pha yaa suea khrong which translated means Tiger Queen. It sounds so pretty, doesn’t it?… I love some of the Thai translations.

Trees flower in autumn and winter and produce a yellow fruit which turns red as it ripens.

The fruit can be eaten raw or cooked as can the seed of the cherry.

This recipe is for pickled cherries. 

  • 6 cups of pitted and washed cherries.
  • 1 lime
  • 2 stalks of lemongrass crushed
  • 4 pieces of dried ginger( galangal)
  • 10 dried birds eye chillies
  • 2 cups of  white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of rice vinegar.

Either one large mason jar which holds 4 cups or 2 smaller jars sterilised.

Zest your lime and add to a mason jar with lemongrass, ginger and chillies.

Put both kinds of vinegar, sugar and juice of the lime into a pan and on a medium heat, stir until the sugar has dissolved when the vinegar is warm add the cherries and cook for 4 minutes.

With a slotted spoon put the cherries into the jar, then strain the vinegar and pour over the cherries any remaining vinegar put in a clean bottle and use for salad dressings or marinades.

Seal the jar and leave for 4-6 weeks to allow the flavours to develop.

Enjoy!

Further information on the uses of the bark and leaves.

Gum is obtained from the bark and chewed also the juice from the bark if applied externally to the back is said to give some relief from the pain of a backache.

Both the fruit and leaves also produce a green dye.

The seeds are used in the production of necklaces by the ethnic tribes in Northern Thailand.

This tree has hard, strong aromatic wood which is glossy and the branches are used for walking sticks.

A little warning: 

This fruit belongs to a genus where most if not all its members produce hydrogen cyanide which is a poison which gives an almond taste to their characteristic flavour.

The toxin which is found mainly in the leaves and the seeds is easily detected by its bitter taste. The quantity is too small to do any harm but a very bitter seed or fruit should not be eaten.

On the plus side in small quantities, it has been proved to stimulate respiration and improve digestion. It is also claimed to be of benefit in the treatment of cancer.

Which brings me to what I always say ..moderation is key and as always  I can’t say it enough ” check” what you are eating before you eat it if it is unknown and you have just picked it because it looks pretty and because you have heard you can use other flowers. Not all flowers are edible.

Please always check and stay safe.

I hope you have enjoyed hearing about some of the fruits which we have here in Thailand if you have and you think any of your friends would love to read about them then please share on your favourite social media or to Pinterest.

Connect to Carol( Moi)

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

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Thank you  for reading until next time stay safe, laugh a lot and enjoy your weekend  xxx

 

 

 

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Retired No One Told Me!..Weekly Roundup… It’s all about the Flavour…

Welcome to my weekly roundup …you know the procedure by now..comfy chair, a drink relax and enjoy!

lady relaxing kindle-1867751_1280

My first post week was one which bought back memories of a lovely holiday in Malta and their lovely National dish of rabbit stew which in turn made me remember my granddad and my uncle Ken…Both of who worked on the land and taught me much when growing up…The rabbits were mostly poached(shhh) and his ferret definitely not a pet but that is life and how it is…The rabbit stew, however, my mum and Nan used to make..I loved it!

Enjoy recipes and I think I will be making my first octopus dish as Jovina’s recipe sounds and looks glorious…

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2018/07/29/cooking-the-mediterranean-island-countries/

Then it was my regular Tuesday No more Diets …Healthy Eating… I started keeping a food diary as I had decided no more biscuits with my morning cuppa…Day 6 and No biscuits I sent Lily home with the biscuits so as to avoid temptation…How did all this come about? I read the lovely Sally’s post and perused the chart she provided and was shocked that those two biscuits could have such an impact so I duly weighed myself and started my food diary…

The plan??? Keep the diary and weigh myself every Monday( no hopping on and off the scales)…Well…Today is Sunday and the lure of the scales just too much…4LBS… OFF!

 

You two are so dumped from my diet…

I will also be truthful and did dump the Haribos only little packets of jellies but nearly every night… 2 things and 4 LB in 6 days…

Thank you, Sally, for getting me refocused …Hugs! xxx

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2018/07/31/healthy-eatingno-more-dietseat-yourself-slim/

Wednesday is the day I can indulge my passion for cooking courtesy of Sally and this week it was my favourite recipes …The recipes I make the most instead of buying them…

Healthier, it saves me money…A no-brainer really and it takes less time to make them than it takes to get in the car, negotiate the traffic, find a car parking space and then queue at the till and you still have to drive home…

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2018/08/01/smorgasbord-blog-magazine-the-cookery-and-food-column-with-carol-taylor-fajita-spice-tahini-peanut-butter-hummus/

Following on from Fruity Friday and the red Bananas I discovered along with some things I didn’t know …That all red bananas are not naturally red…The ones on the bunch are but not the pretty looking red bananas in a dessert…They are red because they are cooked in Lime water?? A trip to the local market with my daughter in law and we found the red paste…Spoiler Alert!

Small cooking bananas

Today I will be cooking the green bananas and turning them into a red dessert and all will be revealed on Friday…..

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2018/08/02/what-is-lime-water-nam-pboon-sai/

It was then the turn of one of my archived posts about the tradition of charcoal making down on the farm which the lovely Sally once again showcased for me …Such a generous lady is our Sal xxx

charcoal-pit

The tradition of making charcoal here in rural Thailand.

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2018/08/02/smorgasbord-posts-from-your-archives-travel-thailand-down-on-the-farm-making-charcoal-by-carol-taylor/

Date time…I should be so lucky as sung by Kylie… Stuffed with blue cheese they are a wonderous thing or wrapped in bacon… I love those beautiful patterned Tagines, don’t you???Fruity Friday Dates (1)

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2018/08/03/fruity-friday-dates/

Lastly …Are you still with me??? Do you need to take five, top up your cuppa ???

Lastly, I took you on a journey through the 5 tastes of  Thai cuisine the ingredients which make up those tastes of Spicy, Sour, Sweet, Salty and Bitter…

fresh cut limes-1239267_1280

How you don’t get a starter, main course and then a dessert here… Even in a restaurant that serves western food Thais don’t get the concept of individual courses as their food is about the whole meal and how the flavours compliment each other how if you have a hot curry you will get a mild but tasty soup and stir-fry…

Which is why a Thai recipe is a guide as chillies vary in heat, fish sauce can vary by brand, depending on the time of year the taste of limes vary which takes me back to what I always say to you TASTE and TASTE again build your flavours to suit your palate and then you may be able to say I can cook Thai Food …

It has taken me 10 years and I am still learning…

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2018/08/04/thai-cooking-sweet-sour-spicy-salty-and-bitter/

I hope you have enjoyed this roundup if you have please share or pin to your favourite board or media…Thank you xxx

Connect to Carol( Moi)

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you so much for reading this I hope you have a lovely weekend …xxx

 

Fruity Friday…Dates

 

Fruity Friday Dates (1)

Welcome to Fruity Fridays and this week it is a date…No, not that kind the sweet delicious dates that pair wonderfully with bacon or blue cheese or add that touch of sweetness to a Moroccan Tagine.

I do have as pictured above a date palm in my garden but dates don’t fare well here they like hot, dry temperatures not hot and humid.

The dates that are on my tree are picked while young and unripe and we take them to Lily’s other grandmother who loves them…so they don’t go to waste as the village ladies like them unripe but unripe the texture in your mouth is like when you eat banana peel but a lot drier and sour and not something that I like to eat but each to their own it wouldn’t do for us all to be alike, however, she also loves it when we take her fully ripe dates  as a treat.

Dates are probably one of the only naturally dehydrated fruits they are also fat-free, saturated fat-free, cholesterol free, sodium free and a great source of fibre.

Dates have been a staple food in the Middle East for thousands of years and many people still offer dates at each meal as a sign of hospitality or as an accompaniment to unsweetened tea or coffee.

When I was a child the only time we had dates were at Christmas they were a treat but dates now are used as appetisers wrapped in bacon the saltiness of the bacon is a good foil for the sweetness of the dates also stuffed with blue cheese they are a lovely thing and very moreish and are seen on many a buffet table.

dates rolled in bacon-2327534_1280

Date and walnut loaf or bread is also quite nice a little sweet for me and I remember my dad loving a sticky date pudding with custard.

Sticky Date and Walnut Pudding.

  • 1 cup dried pitted dates chopped
  • 4 tbsp low-fat milk
  • 1/2 cup  margarine
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2  eggs lightly beaten
  • 1 cup self-raising flour
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger if using fresh ginger chop/grate finely.
  • 1/2 cup walnuts toasted and roughly chopped.

Let’s Cook!

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Lightly grease a 1 litre (1 quart) pudding basin lined with a disc of parchment paper.

Place the dates in a bowl and pour over 2 tablespoons milk. Stir to coat, then leave to soak.

Place the margarine, sugar, eggs and remaining milk in a bowl. Sift over the flour, cinnamon and ginger, and beat with an electric mixer for 2 minutes or until smooth. Fold in the soaked dates and walnuts.

Spoon the mixture into the pudding basin. Set the basin in a baking pan and pour in boiling water to come 1 cm up the sides of the basin. Cover the pan and basin with a tent of foil.

Bake for about 1 hour or until the pudding has lightly risen and a skewer comes out clean. If not, bake a further 10 minutes.

Turn the sticky date and walnut pudding onto a serving plate.

Serve with custard which is how my mum always served it although now many make sauces with fruit like an orange sauce  I think with this custard is all you need.

ENJOY!

Dates in Morocco, for example, are added to savoury dishes like a tagine …I just love how ornate some of these tagines are and the food which cooks in one of those is always just amazing.

Lamb Tagine with Dates.

morocco- date tagine 2290936_1280

Ingredients:

  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 onions, thinly sliced
  • half sm cauliflower cut into florets.
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh root ginger
  • 2kg boneless lamb  shoulder, cut into 5cm chunks
  • 4 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp each paprika  and ground coriander
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 850ml passata
  • 700g sweet potato, cut into chunks
  • 350g pitted date
  • Some slivered almonds and some coriander for garnish.

Let’s Cook!

Heat the oil in a large, deep pan. Add the onions, then gently fry until softened, about 5 mins.

Stir in the ginger, add the meat in batches, then fry on all sides until lightly coloured. Return all the meat to the pan, stir in the spices and cinnamon sticks, then cook for 1 min.

Add the passata and 800ml water, then bring to the boil, stirring. Season well, then cover and simmer for 1½ hrs, until the lamb is tender.

Add the sweet potatoes and vegetables, stir well, cover again, then cook for 20 mins or until the potatoes are just tender.

Stir in the dates and heat through for 5 mins. Taste and add more seasoning if necessary.

To serve, spoon the tagine into a serving dish and scatter with the almonds and coriander.

N.B. As with all tagines or stews, you can add any vegetables i.e carrots, sweet corn, courgettes whatever you have that needs using.

Lastly, this little stuffing is a match made in heaven…

stuffed pork loin-386802_640

Date and bacon stuffing.

  • slices bacon, chopped
  • stalks celery, finely chopped
  • medium onion, chopped
  • 3/4cup snipped pitted whole dates
  • tbsp snipped fresh thyme
  • clove garlic, minced
  • cups dry cubes sourdough bread
  • 1 – 1 1/3cups vegetable or chicken broth

Let’s Cook!

In a large pan, cook bacon until crisp. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to paper towels to drain. Pour off all but 1 tbsp. of drippings. Add celery and onion to skillet. Cook 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in dates, thyme, and garlic.

In a large bowl combine bread cubes, date mixture, and bacon. Drizzle with enough broth to moisten, stirring to combine.

You can then cook the stuffing and serve as an accompaniment or use to stuff a piece of loin as I have done we love pork loin with stuffing.

To stuff, the pork loin either cut a pocket and stuff or cut the loin but not right through put the stuffing down the middle and roll and tie with string.

This recipe is for stuffed pork loin but with a different stuffing but more detailed on how to stuff a pork loin if you are a beginner.

You can then wrap the loin in bacon if desired.

I hope you have enjoyed this post on the Date …Have you a favourite recipe which you make using dates? If so please share it with us.

Connect to Carol( Moi)

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you so much for reading this I hope you have a lovely weekend …xxx

 

 

Fruity Friday…The Red Banana

Red Bananas (2)

Banana trees are everywhere here in gardens, growing on wasteland, by the side of the road everywhere… Sometimes I can’t even give them away…

They can be frozen, used in fruit shakes and smoothies or banana bread…Banana pancakes are very popular here and we have a little stall just down the road from us.

The kids love them but they are too sweet for me and an occasional treat for them as they pour condensed milk all over them.

You will also see BBQ’S by the side of the road grilling them and serving with some sweet syrup or fried bananas, banana balls which are one of my favourites when I go to market but you name it you can get the banana any which way…

They range from tiny little bananas to fair sized one not sold by the kilo as in western countries but by the hand as bananas are freely available here and very prolific crops.

The red banana I was given as a gift by one of my neighbours they are very nice and so pretty… it has a balanced sweet taste and can be used as a cooking banana even though it isn’t plantain but we just enjoyed eating them just as they were.

Red Bananas (2)

The leaves of the red banana, however, cannot be used to cook, wrap or serve food on. The red banana is not so popular as other bananas as it is harder to grow they also require more water and the skins tend to crack so I think I got a bit of a treat as I hadn’t seen them before. and the skins on these were lovely and smooth so they obviously were well watered.

More so unusual because when I was showing a friend she told me that some red bananas sold as a sweet dish here are not a special variety that is naturally red like mine but rather, the bananas are soaked in red coloured hydrolyzed lime water, made with a lime powder obtained from fossilized shells dissolved in water. The soaking hardens the bananas so that they don’t fall apart when later boiled in syrup. These “Red ” bananas may be eaten on their own or served in sweetened coconut milk.

That was an interesting piece of info not sure if I would like to eat them but I will certainly be keeping my eyes out and have asked my friend to get me some if she sees them…I will now be investigating this fossilized shells they use.

You learn something every day don’t you??? Have you seen this dessert or tried it???

Healthwise the red banana is high on potassium and is alkaline in nature. Since it is red in colour, it has a high content of anthocyanin which acts like an antioxidant. It is also high on fibre and vitamin C.

Even though the basic constitutes of all varieties of bananas are the same, the red bananas are high in all the vitamins and minerals and is a great antioxidant-rich food.

Just a little tip… I was told that Red bananas are great for your skin when made into a paste… To prepare an easy and effective face mask mix powered oats, mashed red banana and few drops of honey to make a paste. Apply it on your face an let it dry and then wash it off.

Not only do they make a great face mask but they are good for your hair…

You can mash the banana with coconut, sesame or almond oil to moisturize your hair and to relieve problems like dandruff, hair fall and dry hair. Add few teaspoons of lemon in the mask and apply it all over your hair. Leave it on for 30 minutes and then wash off for bouncy and shiny hair.

I hope you enjoyed this post about my gift of red bananas…

If you did please hit the share buttons …xxx

Connect to Carol( Moi)

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT

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Thank you  for reading and have a lovely weekend x

 

Fruity Friday…The Raspberry…

Fruity Fridays The Raspberry

 

Welcome to Fruity Friday today I am showcasing a fruit which is synonymous with desserts and I definitely am not the desert queen by any means…I may make the odd ice cream or a fruit compote but my culinary skills lie elsewhere I am a savoury lady although I  used to make birthday cakes when my kiddies were young and I wish I had the photos but I didn’t back them up and lost all of them a few years ago…Lesson learnt the hard way … I think my favourite was Goldilocks and the three bears and of course, I made numerous forts and fairy castles…I digress…

I suppose this is what has stopped me my lack of dessert making in showcasing a fruit which I love… fresh or frozen it freezes very well…The Raspberry…

raspberry-3454504_1280

Raspberries are an excellent source of Vitamin C, manganese and dietary fibre. They are a very good source of copper and a good source of Vitamin K, Vitamin E, magnesium, folate, omega-3 fatty acids and potassium.

A little powerhouse of benefits…

Spicy Raspberry Sauce.

  • I punnet of raspberries
  • 3 tbsp. Hot pepper sauce
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

Let’s get saucy…

In a blender, purée raspberries with 1/4 cup water; strain through a fine-mesh sieve over a medium bowl, pushing the mixture through with rubber spatula.

Into the raspberry mixture, whisk the honey, smoked paprika, 1/8 tsp salt, and remaining 3 tablespoons hot sauce.

This spicy little dip is lovely with chicken wings or sliced strip steak…

I like raspberries made into a fruit compote and I love it with porridge oats …To make the compote measure 3 cups of fresh or frozen raspberries, 1/3-1/2 cup of sugar, I tsp lime juice…Just pop your berries in a saucepan on a low heat with half the sugar if you think you need a splash of water then add it bring to a slow rolling boil and let simmer until the sugar has dissolved and the fruit has broken down add your lime or lemon juice.

I don’t mind the pips but if you prefer a smoother compote then pass the mixture through a fine sieve.

raspberries jam-3483528_1280

Adjust the sugar depending on how sweet you like your compote ..I prefer mine on the tart side …This will keep in the fridge for about a week or freeze it in portions.

You could also do a mix of different berries, blackberries, blueberries, cranberries which is also very nice and something which I do…

A compote is also lovely served with natural or greek yoghurt…

Raspberry Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Mix raspberries and sugar together in a bowl; set aside until mixture is juicy, about 10 minutes.

Mash berries using a fork until liquefied if you prefer a smoother vinaigrette then blitz in a small mixer.

Pour berry mixture into a jar with a lid; add balsamic vinegar, olive oil, honey, and salt. Cover the jar with a lid and shake until dressing is mixed well.

Store in refrigerator.

Raspberry Smoothies.

Raspberry Protein Shake

Doesn’t that look beautiful? To me, it just screams drink me the colour is awesome so vibrant.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup of coconut water
  • 1/3 cup of greek yoghurt
  • 1/2 cup of frozen raspberries
  • 1/2 medium beetroot(raw) peeled and diced.
  • 1 tbsp honey ( optional)
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds ( optional)

Let’s, Blitz!

Measure all the ingredients into your blender and blitz away… The colour was amazing a beautiful colour and it tasted very nice not too sweet and I did add honey.

This smoothie can be drunk instead of a drink with protein powder and the like in it …An alternative to bought protein drinks…Having never had a protein drink I do not know what they taste like although I have listened to others who say well they don’t taste great but I drink them anyway…Really!

I think I know which one I would rather drink…Don’t you??

Did you know?

raspberries spoon-3188377_1280

Each raspberry consists of around 100 individual tiny fruits, called drupelets, filled with one seed. They are arranged in a shape of a helmet around the centrally positioned small stem. When ripe raspberries are harvested from the plant, the stem remains on the mother plant, leaving the hole in the middle of the fruit.

Did you know?

Scotland is famous for its raspberry growing. In the late 1950s, raspberries were brought down from Scotland to London on a steam train known as the Raspberry Special.

I think my abiding memory of raspberries is one picking them as a child and two my nan used to make the best trifle with raspberries no custard just plain sponge, raspberries and jelly made with raspberry juice and served with lovely fresh cream …Very simple and how I make my trifles to this day…Nothing fancy…Just simply done so fruity and fresh…

So no I am not a fancy dessert queen just simple flavours and that is how I roll…No airs and graces…Just me…

I hope you have enjoyed this post and if you have please pin it or share on your favourite social media … Comments in the comments section it really makes my day to hear from you…What is your favourite recipe using raspberries???

Connect to Carol( Moi)

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest ( 1): https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Enjoy your weekend, have fun and laugh a lot and be mindful xxx

 

Fruity Friday…Rambutan Fruit.

Fruity Friday, Rambutan Fruit

Native to south-east Asia this lovely fruit has almost a soft silky feel when you touch it and looks very pretty. Similar to the Lychee,  Longan and mamoncillo fruits it has a sweet tasting grape-like flavour.

All the fruit stalls and the markets have lots of this pretty fruit it is being sold everywhere…Thais love their fresh fruit and this one is no exception…

It has a leathery red skin covered with soft, fleshy spires hence the name which means  “hairy.”

In Vietnam, it is called Chom Chom which means messy hair.

The peeled fruits can be eaten raw or cooked and are often used in fruit salads or made into a syrup to flavour whipped cream or cocktails.

Although grown all over Southeast Asia, Thailand is the largest producer.

The rambutan is made into jams, jellies or canned in syrup.

Rambutan contains diverse nutrients in modest amounts. Vitamin C, Calcium and iron.

Like many other fruits and vegetables, the skin has been used to treat dysentery or chronic fever. The leaves are also made into a paste by mashing the leaves, adding water and squeezing out the extract then applied to the forehead this paste is also a great hair conditioner.

Boiling the tree roots to make a tea is also used to treat fevers.

How to open it?

Pot your thumbnail into the skin and squeeze and turn the fruit the fleshy fruit will just pop out.

Rambutan Jam.

rambutan open fruit-2477586_1280

  • 3 cups of peeled and seeded Rambutan,
  • Juice of a large lemon
  • 2 1/2 cups of sugar.

Let’s Cook!

Blitz the Rambutan in the food processor …I leave mine a little chunky then put all ingredients in a pan. Bring to the boil and simmer on medium until the sugar has dissolved. Turn down and simmer 15-20 minutes until the mix has thickened. Make sure you don’t let the sugar caramelise.

Put in a sterilised bottle.

This is lovely instead of applesauce on meats.

N.B.  Make sure your fruit is very fresh or the jam will have a dusty taste..not nice at all.

Thai Chicken curry with rambutan.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb chicken breast cubed or sliced or boneless thighs
  • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 4 kaffir lime leaves, torn
  • 3 red Thai chillies cut diagonally
  • 1 stalk lemongrass, smashed, outer layers removed, and inner core thinly sliced
  • One 2-inch piece galangal root, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 8 rambutan
  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 12 small pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 12 cups coconut milk
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp. fish sauce
  • 2 tsp. palm sugar or light brown sugar
  • Coriander leaves, to garnish
  • Lime wedges, for serving
Let’s Cook!
Using a mortar and pestle, pound the garlic, lime leaves, chillies, lemongrass, and galangal with the turmeric until a coarse curry paste is formed.
Using a small knife, halve the rambutan and peel away their outer shell. Remove the soft flesh from the centre nut, avoiding the papery skin that surrounds it, and place the flesh in a bowl.
In a large saucepan, heat 1 tbsp of the oil over medium heat.
Add the pineapple, and cook, stirring, until slightly caramelized, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pineapple to a plate.
Add the remaining 1 tbsp of oil to the pan, and then add the onions. Cook, stirring, until golden brown, 4 minutes. Add the curry paste, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes more.
Pour in the coconut milk and stock, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, and cook, stirring, until reduced by half, about 20 minutes.
Stir in the chicken, and continue to simmer until the chicken is cooked through.
Add the reserved pineapple and rambutan, and cook until the fruit is warmed through, about 2 minutes.
Remove the curry from the heat, and stir in the fish sauce and palm sugar. Garnish with coriander and serve immediately with the lime wedges and rice.
Enjoy!
Rambutan Mojito.
rambutin mojito
Ingredients:
Syrup:
  • 7 oz Rambutan about 8/9 fruits
  • Half a cup of granulated sugar.

For cocktail:

  • 4 large mint leaves
  • A wedge of lime and a couple of slices.
  • 2 fl oz white rum
  • Sparkling water

To make the syrup peel the Rambutan over a bowl to catch any juices, cut the fruit off the pits being careful not to take off the papery skin we don’t want that in our cocktail do we?

In a small pan combine the sugar with half a cup of water bring to a rolling boil stirring until the sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and set aside to cool down. When the syrup has cooled down puree with the Rambutan and any juices until it is smooth.

This puree will keep in the fridge for about 10 days…It is enough for about 8 cocktails.

To make the cocktail…combine 2 tbsp of the syrup in a glass with the mint leaves, squeeze in the lime and add the wedge then muddle gently to release the mint and lime oils. Add the rum and crushed ice and additional lime slices if req then add sparkling water to taste. Stir gently with a straw.

To make it extra special roll a peeled rambutan in sugar or a sugar and chilli mix and add to the edge of the glass.

Enjoy!

Have you come across this pretty little fruit?? Do you have any favourite recipes using this fruit?? If so I would love to hear from you in the comments x

Thank you for reading this post I do hope you enjoyed it and if you did please hit the share buttons xxx

Connect to Carol( Moi)

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT

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Have a lovely weekend and stay safe xxx

Fruity Friday… The Inca Berry

Fruity Friday's The Inca Berry (1)

Inca Berries aka Cape Gooseberries, Husk Berries, Bubble cherries( I quite) like that one, Physalis…

In the French language, they are called Amour- en cage meaning caged love…..Now that sounds lovely I think…Don’t you?

High in pectin, they are very suited to making jams. They are rich in Vit C and A, iron, niacin and phosphorous. For a berry, they are high in protein and fibre so that pretty little berry which is often seen decorating beautiful desserts or covered in chocolate has hidden attributes.

parfait-1522082_1280

Parfait is the French word for “perfect,”

Served straight from the freezer, their texture is similar to ice cream’s, but they take on a mousse-like consistency when thawed for a minute or two on the plate.

Yes, I know I don’t do puddings especially posh puds very often at all…I like parfait as it is easy to make and always looks quite nice on the plate especially decorated with the Inca berries or raspberries.

Ingredients:

200g good quality dark or milk chocolate (46-70%)
1 egg yolk
2 eggs
80-100g caster sugar, to taste (the higher the cocoa content, the more sugar you may require)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp Grand Marnier (or liqueur of your choice)
300ml whipping cream

Let’s Cook!

Melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl over simmering water until just melted and smooth.

Whip cream until holding peaks. Set aside.

Whisk egg yolk, eggs and sugar together until very thick and pale. Gently mix in melted chocolate, vanilla and Grand Marnier. Pour chocolate mixture into prepared whipped cream and gently fold in with a large metal spoon until evenly combined.

Line a 1.5L loaf tin with plastic wrap. Pour mixture into the tin. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 8 hours until set.

To serve, remove from freezer a couple of minutes before serving. Turn Parfait onto a serving platter and slice. Serve with golden berries.

Enjoy!

With a texture very similar to the tomato it can be used just as you use a tomato eat it raw or in salads as a pie filling, dried it is like a beautiful golden raisin in fact in many places it is also called golden berry.

It has a sweet flavour ending in a whisper of sour, cooked with a little white onion in Olive oil, seasoned with Salt and pepper until it breaks down it makes a heavenly topping on some lovely toasted granary bread with a scraping of goats cheese or cream cheese then topped with the Inca berries and some warmed honey it is really delicious.

Or split a warmed baguette, add a lovely browned pork sausage and spoon mix the mixture over the sausage…..amazing flavour you will never want ketchup again.

That’s all for this post  I do hope you have enjoyed it I am looking forward to your comments and if you also hit the share buttons I would love that ….Thanks, Carol xxx

Connect to Carol( Moi)

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest ( 1): https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Until next time, stay safe, laugh a lot as laughter is the best medicine and it is free xxx

 

 

 

 

 

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