Tag Archives: Bananas

Christmas Recipes… Lighter Puddings

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Day 5 on the Christmas countdown and today I have some lighter puddings for you as I know some either don’t like or can’t eat a Christmas Pudding…

I always make a Fresh fruit salad and anything goes in whatever is in season and I have some lovely choice of some lovely  exotic fruits to choose from here but wherever you live check out your fruit section and I am sure you will find something exotic there and you only need one if it is a dragon fruit or something which can be expensive but they are quite big so only one would be required the only fruit I don’t use and not because I don’t like it but just because the texture isn’t right for a fruit salad is the banana but you could always make a lovely banan split and that would be a lovely alternative to a rich, Christmas pudding wouldn’t it?

The beauty of a fresh fruit salad is that you can make it as large or as small as you like one portion or ten. You can use any fruit that you have and it can different every time.

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The one I always make is very simple I use Oranges, Apples, Grapes, Pear, and section and slice them and add lemon/ lime juice to stop the fruit going brown.

Sometimes I  also add some freshly squeezed orange juice or other fruit juice.

This is now when it gets interesting as you can add a little freshly grated ginger, some crushed lemongrass even treat yourself to one of those exotic fruits you have seen in your local shop or farmers market just to liven it up, change it.

Maybe even a touch of chilli???

Some sesame seeds? Some poppy seeds?? Just sprinkled over the top of your serving???

If I use a soft fruit like melon,  mango, strawberries, peaches, apricots, watermelon or kiwi then I put those in about 15 mins before I serve the fruit salad. Otherwise, they can go too mushy and we like our fruit salad fresh and vibrant, nice and crisp.

And of course here I have access to plenty of fresh pineapples, Lychees and Dragon fruit are plentiful and in season here at the moment so into the mix they go…What is your favourite fruit salad mix???

To jazz it up a bit put your salad into a hollowed out pineapple skin… and make like a little boat…

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You can use any combination of fruit that you like just make sure you use lemon/ lime

juice to stop the fruit from discolouring and keep in the fridge until you are ready to serve.

It can be served quite simply with fresh cream or clotted cream if you can get it…

Ice cream there are now so many flavours to choose from or make your own a lovely coconut and lemongrass recipe here or add some chilli to the chocolate ice cream or  as my hubby prefers just a good old fashioned custard.

Serve it with your porridge oats or other cereal with natural yoghurt… the possibilities are endless… Have fun when you make one and try different fruits.

Enjoy!

Banana Split

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Now as you know I get bananas by the cartload here and as it’s Christmas then treat yourself just split a banana and create a culinary masterpiece… Ice cream of your choice and why not mix the flavours, some whipped cream or mascarpone and a sauce, chocolate, salted caramel or my favourite a lovely raspberry coulis… Maybe some little marshmallows or some pieces of meringue…Go wild and have fun!

Christmas comes but once a year!

How about a lovely whole baked apple…I remember my dear mummy making these and I used to love them… In fact, I haven’t had one for years…

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Just stuff with some dried fruits, sultanas or chopped apricots maybe a little of the sweet mincemeat? Add some cinnamon or mixed spice… Drizzle with some maple syrup or golden syrup and bake until the apple is soft and the juices are running…A lovely light pudding after your Christmas meal…

Just some baked figs with some cheese also make a lovely lighter pudding so many dishes you can make..A pannacotta with fresh fruit?

What dessert do you make for after your Christmas meal?

I love a creme brulee or fruit salad…I also love a small piece of Christmas pudding but normally save that for later when my lunch has gone down.

Until tomorrow for more Christmas recipes and ideas…

I can now also be found over on my new blog Orienthailiving where if you still have some shopping to do I have some ideas for you some links will be affiliate links for which I will receive a small commision but there is no extra cost to you and it will help get my Amazon account up and running so thank in advance if you do go through my links.

 

 

 

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Down on the farm….

My turkey babies are not babies anymore….

 

He is just such a handsome boy, isn’t he? They love just love wandering about the farm and eating the greens and picking bits here and there….They are a joy to keep and have really lovely natures…..One got attacked by a dog a while ago but let himself be picked up and his leg cleaned so placidly he is lovely….The dog..banished we cannot have an animal which attacks the other animals…The turkey he is alive and well after his little skirmish and none the worse for wear thank goodness. Our chook who thinks he is a turkey is still living with the turkeys he doesn’t want to be with the chooks…

He even speaks like a turkey now…

The banana trees are bearing fruit how is this for a bunch of bananas…..

It is a shame they all ripen at once so if anyone has some nice green banana recipes please let me know…I have shared with the neighbours..even the tuk-tuk driver but know we will be having lots of smoothies and banana bread and chutney and Banana splits have been mentioned…lol

Watermelon

Watermelons are now to be found in abundance and if you need any recipes then Carol and Sally have a treat for you Health Benefits and recipes just in case you missed it!

Today I am busy pickling some more Watermelon Rinds which are a lovely thing…Try them you will be so pleased you did…

Harvesting the rice.

Rice feilds down farm

The early rice is now being harvested and I tell you such hard work and for 200B ( 6 US) DOLLARS a day such long hours  8-5 and back-breaking work.

The main rice harvest is not until November but some people plant a bit earlier and can also harvest it cheaper as in November as it is busy the rate goes up to 300 baht a day…. still a pittance for the work as if the farmers have not weeded the rice regularly then it is harder to harvest…Our rice is always weeded regularly which makes the harvest a little easier…

That’s all for Down on the farm for today I hope you enjoyed the updates and below are links to previous down on the farm posts in case you missed them.

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2017/08/17/down-on-the-farm-sesame-plantngaa/

https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/2017/04/16/down-on-the-farm-thai-potatoes/

I can also now be found over on my new site please pop over and say hello …I have called it Orienthailiving I hope you like my choice of  name    http://myhealthyretirement.com

Thank you for reading and if you loved anything you read please share as sharing is caring…xx

 

 

 

 

Healthy Eating…Potassium

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Potassium is vital to our good health and we need to eat enough potassium each day to maintain a healthy body.  Potassium can be found in every one of our bodies cells and plays a major part in our continued good health. Although let us be clear it is not potassium alone which keeps us healthy.

But to feel our best we should eat enough potassium rich foods every day to help prevent certain chronic conditions. Regularly not eating enough potassium rich foods could jeopardise our long-term health in many ways.

Recommended daily amounts:

Adults over the age of 19, adolescents between 14 and 18 years old and pregnant women should consume 4,700 milligrams of potassium each day while limiting themselves to 1,500 mg of sodium.says the Food and Nutrition Board. Nursing women over the age of 14 need more: 5,100 milligrams daily.

Please note however and I always stress this …moderation… but too much can be just as damaging to your health.

The body needs a delicate balance of potassium to help the heart and other muscles work properly. But too much potassium in your blood can lead to dangerous, and possibly deadly, changes in heart rhythm.

Home cooking does determine our intake of potassium but boiling depletes potassium. For example, a boiled potato has almost half the potassium of a baked potato. To preserve potassium, eat fruits and vegetables raw,  roasted or lightly steamed.

Food rather than supplements is always a better option for increasing your intake of nutrients as foods contain fibre as well. Let food be thy medicine is my mantra. I just have this thing about supplements of any sort and maybe it is me but I prefer to eat food rather than take a powder or tablet.

I know what is in my food…. That’s me, folks …

Here is a little list for you of foods high in potassium:

  • Winter squash, cubed, 1 cup, cooked: 896 mg
  • Sweet potato, medium, baked with skin on 694 mg
  • Potato, medium, baked with skin: 610 mg
  • White beans, canned, drained, half cup: 595 mg
  • Yogurt, fat-free, 1 cup: 579 mg
  • Halibut, 3 ounces, cooked: 490 mg
  • 100% orange juice, 8 ounces: 496 mg
  • Broccoli, 1 cup, cooked: 457 mg
  • Cantaloupe, cubed, 1 cup: 431 mg
  • Banana, 1 medium: 422 mg
  • Pork tenderloin, 3 ounces, cooked: 382 mg
  • Lentils, half cup, cooked: 366 mg
  • Milk, 1% low-fat, 8 ounces: 366 mg
  • Salmon, Sustainable fishing, 3 ounces, cooked: 326 mg
  • Pistachios, shelled, 1 ounce, dry roasted: 295 mg
  • Raisins, quarter cup: 250 mg
  • Chicken breast, 3 ounces, cooked: 218 mg
  • Tuna, light, canned, drained, 3 ounces: 201 mg
  • Coconut water, 100 gm: 250 mg

I always get my daily fix of coconut water from a little man up the road when I come back from my daily walk it is a most welcome drink as he always has a chilled one for me…. I love it and it does you good…just be careful if you buy coconut water in a bottle or can that it doesn’t have added sugar and the like because it then takes it from that healthy coconut water to something that is not so healthy. Just beware and read the labels I never trust claims on the front of the bottle and it should have an ingredient list of one….Coconut water ..pure and simple…

coco-607349_1920   If you take prescribed medication, please before you embark on any change of eating plan always ask your doctor or pharmacist about how all of the medications you take affect the potassium levels in your body, and if you need more, or less, of the mineral.

 

If you enjoy these Healthy eating posts please let me know in comments and reblog or share so everyone can see how easy it is to eat healthily it is just being aware… And I love fudge.. or burfee…

Until next time stay safe, laugh a lot as of all the medicines laughter is the best….

 

 

 

How to make your own Spearmint extract by Angie.

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I never have made any extracts and I think this is a wonderful idea from my friend Angie over on Learning how to live free and Getting off the Grid.

She has some wonderful ideas and is the queen of coupon savings, she is one amazing lady. Just please click the link below and take a look.

https://getoffthegrid2.blogspot.com/2017/06/how-to-make-your-own-spearmint-extract.html?showComment=1496728140551#c8511698336769032692

I will almost certainly be making some of these mmmmmmm Chilli and Vodka anyone ?

 

 

I will almost certainly be making some of these

 

 

 

 

Would you eat me?

In this day and age when the population is increasing scientists and people’s thoughts turn to other means of food….GM modified foods have many critics so a lot of people are looking at alternatives foods which in the past we would never have considered eating and which now due to research reveal that many are very good sources of proteins and vitamins. We just need to get over our natural ..well revulsion…Yuk instinct!inchworm-1732290_1280

Picture source:

 

The Mealworm:

Is the brown worm-like larvae of the Darkling Beetle and it can be a pest as the larvae feed on stored grains but they are also a good source if properly and humanely killed of protein and fat.

To prepare the meal worms for cooking:

You can either leave them for a day or two with zero food or as they take the flavour of what they eat you can give them small pieces of apple, cinnamon sticks crushed or carrot diced small.

Do avoid citrus or watery foods they DON’T work.

The next step is to freeze them for one to two days…NOT as some suggest 15 minutes as they go into a state of dormancy and do not die. Well, we all eat or have eaten food which is killed by one means or another.

Then boil

Crispily fried meal worms with chilli and garlic:

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Slice some chillies and finely dice some garlic. Melt some butter in a pan and add the chillies and garlic saute for 2 minutes and add mealworms. If they start to pop ….lower the heat..it is too high and fry until they are golden and crispy…a lovely snack.

Banana worm bread:

4oz margarine.

6oz castor sugar

8oz plain flour

2 mashed bananas

1/2 cup of chopped nuts

1/4 cup roasted meal worms

2 eggs

1tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt.

Method:

Cream together the sugar, margarine, salt and baking soda.

Stir in the mashed bananas, nuts and, meal worms.

Put mixture into a prepared loaf tin and cook in a pre heated oven at 180 degrees for 45mins to 1 hour or until a skewer comes out clean.

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Photo source:

All photos are my own unless otherwise stated and the link is below the photo.

This bread came about as an online friend requested a recipe for worm bread…She is looking at alternative food sources and it may be that we may all at some point will need to do this. An interesting point was raised by a comment on my post that these TV programs like Get me out of the Jungle have not done eating insects as part of our diets any favours.

Just a thought worth pondering…..What do you think? Please tell me in comments….

 

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

A Banana #thelme55fruitweekend.

No, not just a Banana…..I thought about Thelma’s fruit weekend challenge and we have many exotic fruits here, so armed with my camera I went to the local fruit market. Well, lots of oranges are in season at the moment as are Watermelons galore and the ever present mangoes….but what I was looking for…not in season..sam_8482

Back home I went disappointed and thinking hard a lot of the fruits are what I call staples available most of the year and now because of progress available all over the world.

What can I feature??? Well, I am sure most of you can get Bananas in your supermarket which will probably be the Cavendish by name as the original Banana favoured by the supermarkets was the ” Gros Michel” which became extinct by 1960 as it was wiped out by a fungus called the Panama Disease.

This could happen at any time as Bananas are actually clones and if they become infected with a fungus it just runs rampant and kills them all.

Banana it is then..here in Thailand and in my garden Bananas grow in abundance.

So much so that I always freeze some ready to make a smoothie.

This recipe is one that my daughter gave me along side a packet of chia seeds Banana Espresso Smoothie

Its scientific name is “Musa Sapientum” which roughly translated  means ” Fruit of wise  men”

Here it is called Kluay pronounce ” glue eye” spellings vary slightly around the regions and it is a tree-like perennial and officially classed as a herb, the world’s largest herb as it can reach 25 feet in height. The fruit is also classed as a berry.

Here in Thailand leaves are used to serve food on or wrap food in like these little parcels of tri coloured sticky rice topped with shredded pork.

The purple flowers are steamed and eaten with a spicy Thai dip.

The inside of the skins are also used to stop itching and inflammation of insect bites and burns. It is also said that if you tape a piece of banana skin side down over a wart every night that the potassium in the skin makes the wart disappear within 1-2 weeks.

Mashed and mixed with a tbsp of heavy cream, and a tbsp of honey and then applied to dry hair covered with a shower cap and a hot towel. Left for an hour and then rinsed off before shampooing the hair it is a wonderful moisturising treatment.

There is no end to the properties of this low calorie, no fat, no sodium, no cholesterol berry which is also rich in Vitamin C, Potassium, fibre and B6.

Here it is used to make bread and muffins. If cooked the banana skins are edible, you will see fried bananas in abundance on the street food stalls…they are fried in batter, grilled on the BBQ in their skins and turned into golden fritters ( Kluay phao)

Banana spring rolls with a sweet dip or eaten green and raw with a spicy dip.( See recipe above)

They can be used to make a beautiful Banana Blossom stir fry.

Just wash the blossoms and put in a bowl of cold water with some lemon.

Ingredients:
1 tbsp coconut oil/olive oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tbsp yellow split peas/chana dhal
1 tbsp split green lentils/urad dhal
1-2 dry red Chilli halved
2 tsp tamarind juice
5-8 Curry Leaves
1 Banana flower
1 large red onion, diced
½ tsp Turmeric Powder
¼ cup grated unsweetened coconut, fresh/frozen
Salt to taste

To cook!

Bring some water to the boil in a cooking pan and add the banana flower to a boiling water pot and cook for 10 minutes, until they are soft and done. Drain the water through a colander and squeeze with the hand to remove any excess water. Set them aside.

Heat oil in a cooking pan and once the oil is hot, add mustard seeds, Let them pop, add lentils and halved red chillies. Now add tamarind juice and curry leaves and mix well,
Mix in finely chopped onion and saute on a medium flame till they are light golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add turmeric and mix well.

Add the cooked banana flower to the pan. Stir fry for 2 minutes at on a medium flame until they are mixed well with the spices.
Add salt to taste and sprinkle grated coconut on top and cook for another 2-3 minutes.

Serve hot with steam rice.

Green unripe bananas are also used to make Tam Maak Kluay which is a version of the famous Som Tam ( Papaya Salad) which I first had from a roadside stall near Bang Tao beach in Phuket and it is beautiful.

Just a piece of trivia...did you know? That more songs have been written about the Banana than any other fruit.

 

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