Indiana Gazette from Indiana, Pennsylvania on September 15, 1990 · Page 18
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Indiana Gazette from Indiana, Pennsylvania · Page 18

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Saturday, September 15, 1990
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Page 18
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Page 16 — Wednesday, September 17, 2003 FOOD Cia«rt< A bounty of pirate delights By MARIALISA CALTA Newspaper Enterprise Assn. Ahoy, mateys! With "Pirates of the Caribbean" all the rage at the box office, this might just be the year for "Talk like A Pirate Day" to take off. What, you haven't heard of the day that expects you to raise every mizenmast and "Arrrrrr" you can muster? For those of you lubbers who haven't been paying attention, "Talk Like A Pirate Day" was the brainchild of Mark ("Cap'n Slappy") Summers and John ("Or Chumbucket") Baur, also known as "The Pirate Guys" of Albany; Ore. For some inexplicable reason, they began talking like pirates during a racquetball game in 1995, and chose Sept. 19 (Summers' ex-wife's birthday, and a date he could remember) as the "official" holiday. For seven long years, they celebrated privately until 2002, when humor columnist Dave Barry wrote about it ("Is that a great idea or what?"), and "Talk Like a Pirate Day" gained a national following. Maybe not a very large national following. My friend Carole Naquin went to work on Sept. 19 last year and began talking like a pirate, and everyone, she reported "Looked at me as though I were insane." I spent the day answering my phone: "Avast, me hearties!" and succeeded only in scaring a couple of telemarketers. The reason Pirate Day didn't catch on, I figure, is that no one knows how to celebrate. So —. Shiver me timbers! — I'm here to promote ways to eat like a pirate, in the spirit of this up-and-coming holiday. What do pirates eat? It's typical of the Pirate Guys' scholarly approach that they have no idea. Baur said in a recent interview that he thought barbecued ribs are the "perfect pirate cuisine" because he had "heard somewhere" that the word "buccaneer" had "something to do with wild pigs," hut he wasn't sure what. Arrrrrrr. I looked it up. "Splice the mainbrace" (that's pi'rate-ese for "have the first drink of the day") with this Caribbean Smuggler, and you'll be talking like a pirate in no time. (Photo by Bacardi & Company, Ltd.) right: barbecued ribs are indeed "perfect pirate cuisine." TannanilTs book also enlightened me about the source of the word "grog" (a drink of rum and water or citrus juice) that was named after Admiral Edward Vernon, who was called "Old Grog" for his habit of wearing a coat made of a coarse, stiff material called "grogram." Old Grog was the first commander to water the sailor's ration of rum, and the water was later switched to lemon juice to combat scurvy. (In England, lime juice was used, leading to the use of the term "limeys" for British sailors.) So if you be hungry, mateys, whip up a feast of rum drinks "Food in History," by Reay Tannahill (Stein and Day, 1973) says that the assorted outcasts (shipwrecked sailors, runaway servants, religious refugees) who congregated in the Caribbean in the 1600s learned how to smoke meat — including wild pigs — from the Carib Indians. The technique was called "boucan" in French, which morphed into the word "buccaneer" and was applied to the outcasts themselves, becoming a synonym for pirate. In Spanish, the frame on which the meat was smoked was called "barbacoa," which in time became "barbecue." So, in fact, Baur, the scurvy bilge rat, was and ribs. The rum recipe below isn't grog, but all that citrus will keep the scurvy at bay. The ribs are a buccaneers bounty. Aye, for more information about Talk Like a Pirate Day, you can look up www.talklikeapirate.com. CARIBBEAN SMUGGLER For the simple syrup: 1 cup sugar 1 cup water For the drink: 4 Vi teaspoons (% ounces) rum 1 tablespoons (V4 ounce) triple sec 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) orange juice 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) mar- garitamix 1 tablespoon (14 ounce) simple syrup (above) 6 tablespoons (3 ounces) lemon-lime soda Ice, for serving Slice of lime, for garnish Make the simple syrup: Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan set over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook, stirring frequenuy, 3 to 5 minutes, until the sugar is dissolved. Pour into a clean, heat-proof jar and allow to cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate until needed. It will keep indefinitely, and can be used to sweeten other cold drinks dike iced tea) — the sugar doesn't sit on the bottom of the glass. To make the drink; hi a cocktail shaker or jar with a lid, combine the rum, triple sec, orange juice, margarita mix and syrup and shake well. Pour into ice cube-filled glass. Top with lemon-lime soda. Garnish with lime wheel. A little Jolly Roger flag on a toothpick is a nice touch. Yield: 1 serving — Recipe adapted from Bacardi & Company Ltd; www.bacardi.com SOUTHERN SUGARED RIBS 4 to 6 pounds pork spareribs Salt and pepper 1 cup dark brown sugar, or more, as needed Cayenne pepper to taste Before grilling, soak about 3 cups wood chips for at least 1 A hour in cold water. Prepare a charcoal or gas grill for indirect grilling over low (250 degree F) heat Place a drip pan under the grill rack, on the part of the grill that has no flame or coals, and fill it with 2 to 3 inches of water. Drain the wood chips and add them to the grill according to the grill manufacturer's instructions. Trim the ribs: Place the ribs meat-side up on a cutting board. There is a line of fat at the base of the ribs, cut along it to remove the cartilaginous rib tips. Turn the meat over, rib-side up. Cut off the flap of meat on the inside of the ribs. (It will burn before the ribs are done. You can season them as desired and grill them over direct heat for about 15 minutes.) With the rib-side up, wiggle a sharp knife under the tough membrane that covers the bones. Working from one rib to another, pull the membrane off the rib. (Use a paper towel for a better grip). Sprinkle the ribs with salt and pepper. Place them on an oiled grill rack away from the direct heat and over the drip pan filled with water. Grill the ribs until they are getting crispy, and the meat has begun to pull back from the bone, 2 to 3 hours, depending on the heat of your grill. Turn once during cooking. Make sure you add wood chips, as needed, and, if using a charcoal grill, charcoal. Remove the ribs from the grill and place on aluminum foil. Generously rub both sides of each rack of ribs with brown sugar. Sprinkle a small amount of cayenne on each side. Completely seal each rack of ribs in a double thickness of heavy-duty foil and return to the grill. Cook for one hour more, or longer, until the sugar has sort of melted and formed a crust on the ribs. Remove from the grill, unwrap, and cut the ribs apart and serve. Yield: 4 to 6 servings —Recipe adapted from "Grilling America," by Rick Browne New soul food: it ain't heavy, but it's still rich By MARIALISA CALTA Newspaper Enterprise Assn. The term "soul food" — a phrase used to describe the traditional cuisine of African-Americans, especially those from the South — is a relatively new one, dating back only to the 1960s, the same time "soul music" came on the scene. But it's not so new that it can't be updated. Traditional soul food is heavy: Country ham is fried and served with gravy; collard greens are cooked with ham hocks; black- eyed peas bubble in a pot along with salt pork. I have several soul food recipes that instruct you to: "Fry in hot fat." All this fat adds flavor, but it runs counter to the lighter style of eating many Americans arc trying to adopt these days. So, it's a pleasure to find a book like "New Soul Cooking," by Tanya Holland, a book which lives up to its own billing as "updating a cuisine rich in flavor and tradition." The food here is not, by any means, light— there's a cup of oil in the gumbo, 3 sticks of butter in the lemon chess tartlettes, and 1 '/z pounds of cream cheese in the sweet potato cheesecake. But it is, as Holland said in a recent interview, "light-ER," and there's less of an emphasis on meat. For example, Holland — who co-hosls the Food Network's "Melting Pot Soul Kitchen" — transforms "Dirty Rice," a traditional Cajun-Creole dish of rice, chicken gizzards and livers and pork sausage into a vegetarian delight. Her collards get their flavor from a smoked turkey leg instead of a ham hock. She jettisons the pork and shellfish from her jambalaya, and uses instead a pile of seasonal squash. HOMINY, MUSHROOM AND BUTTERNUT SQUASH STEW For the roasted garlic (see Cook's note): 1 garlic bulb 1 teaspoon water Vz teaspoon olive oil salt pepper For the stew: 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 2 leeks, trimmed and chopped (about 2 cups) Vi pound shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and chapped (about 1-1/2 cups) '/2 pound cremini mushrooms, stemmed and chopped (about 3 cups) 6 to 8 cups vegetable or chicken broth (see note) 2 tablespoons chopped fresh marjoram, or 1 tablespoon dried '/z of a 3-pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 4 cups) 1 (30-ounce) can hominy, drained 1 pound kale, large stems removed and torn into 1-inch pieces Hot sauce, for serving (optional) Cook's note: You may substitute 2 tablespoons of store- bought roasted garlic instead. If roasting the garlic: Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Cut the top off the garlic bulb, and place both pieces on a piece of aluminum foil. Mix the water and olive oil together and drizzle over the garlic. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Close the foil and roast for 1 hour, or until the garlic cloves ooze from their papery skins. When cool enough to handle, squeeze out. In a large pot set over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 15 min- A stew of hominy, mushrooms and butternut squash is "new" soul cooking at its best. (Photo by Ellen Silverman for "New Soul Cooking") utes. Stir in the mushrooms and roasted garlic. Add the broth, marjoram, squash and hominy. Cook until squash is fork-tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Add the kale; continue cooking until kale is wilted, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with hot sauce, if desired. Cook's note: the recipe calls for 8 cups of vegetable broth, but I found that much liquid made the dish too soupy. Also, vegetable broth is not sold in large cans in my supermarket. I used instead one large (49.5-ounce) can of chicken broth, which yields about 6 cups. You could also use broth made from vegetable or chicken bouillon. Yield: 6 to 8 servings CONFETTI CORNBREAD 1 large egg 1 Vi cups buttermilk 1 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup cornmeal, preferably stone-ground 4 teaspoon baking powder Vi teaspoon baking soda 2 teaspoons coarse salt 1 tablespoon sugar Vis cup (1 stick) unsalted butter 1 small hot green chili pepper (such as a jalapeno), stemmed, seeded and chopped (1 and 1/2 tablespoons) . 1 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and diced (about IVi cups) 3 scallions (green onions) trimmed and chopped C/4 cup) % cup fresh or frozen (and thawed) corn kernels, cooked and drained Vegetable cooking spray Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place a 9- or 10-inch cast-iron skillet in the oven to heat. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the egg and buttermilk. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar. Add the flour mixture to the buttermilk mixture, and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined. Do not over-mix. In a small skillet set over medium heat, melt the butter and add the chili pepper, bell pepper and scallions. Cook 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are soft. Fold the pepper mixture and the corn into the batter. Remove the heated skillet or com stick mold from the bveri and spray with .vegetable spray. Spoon in the'batter and bake 20 to 25 minutes for skillet bread, or 10 to 15 minutes for com sticks. Yield: 8 servings PECAN SHORTBREAD 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened 1/2 cup powdered sugar 2 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 cup pecan pieces Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. hi the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar. Slowly add the flour, then the salt. Fold in the pecan pieces, mixing to distribute them. Gather the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 30 minutes. On a floured surface, roll the dough out Vi-inch thick. Cut into desired shapes. Transfer cookies to un-greased cookie sheets. Prick the cookies with a fork, and then put them back in the refrigerator, on the baking sheets, to chill for 20 more minutes. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned. Yield: 32 cookies — Recipes from "New Soul Cooking," by Tanya Holland ^f^9^n ^IM^m^ in "Hie W^l^ W ^(fr^r W^fcl^R ™ Cooking for PEPPER CHICKEN BAKED POTATOES 1 baking potato, scrubbed 1 teaspoon olive oil 3 ounces boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 1 inch pieces '/«large green or red bell pepper, seeded and cut into strips 'A small onion, cut into thin wedges 'A teaspoon dried basil leaves, crushed t cream of chicken soup rffo 400 degrees F. Place potato in oven and bake 1 hour, or until tender. Place olive oil in a heavy nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Saute" chicken, in batches if necessary, until browned, stirring often. Transfer chicken to platter and set aside. Add pepper, onion and basil to same skillet and saute" 3-4 minutes, stirring often, until vegetables are almost tender. Stir in soup and water. Bring to a boil. Return chicken to skillet. Reduce heat to low. Cover pan and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally or until chicken is cooked throughout. t Split potatoes open and spoon chicken mixture over. . •> , v»:. — Recipe from www.fltzones.com/members/Nutritionfrecipes.asp NO-BAKE PEANUT SQUARES 1 cup light corn syrup 1 cup white sugar 1 cup peanut butter 4 cup Corn flakes 4cupCheerios 1 cup peanuts In a 2-quart pan, melt together just until smooth the first three ingredients, stirring constantly. Do not boil. (Warning: Don't use glass pan on top of electric stove!) Remove from heat Measure the last three ingredients into a large bowl. Pour over peanut butter mixture. Stir, coating cereal and nuts. Spread into buttered large pan. Cut into squares. — Recipe from www.inmotion-pcs. com/amass/theboss/recipe.htm. On nutrition: Dating tips By ED BLONZ Newspaper Enterprise Assn. DEAR DR. BLONZ: My fiance refuses to use dairy products after the expiration date. My question is: How long after the expiration date can you use milk, eggs, cheese or yogurt?—M.K., Bedford, Ind. DEAR M.K.: Clearing up a misunderstanding about dating seems proper for a couple about to get married. The good news is that to some degree you are both correct. Food should not be consumed after an expiration date. However, the foods you mention don't tend to have expiration dates, and rely instead on a quality-control dating system that allows for consumption after the posted date. That said, let's go through the different dating systems you'll find on various products: • Sell-by Date (also called a Pull Date) —This is the last date on which a product should be sold. Manufacturers use these dates to let retailers know how long to sell the product. There is an allowance for normal home use with these dates. It is found on short shelf-life (perishable) foods such as dairy products, fresh meats, snack foods and refrigerated deli foods. Assuming that they are stored properly, milk products, for example, tend to be fresh for up to seven days after they are opened, but you might not get a full week if you first open the product on the sell-by date. Much depends on the number of times a product is opened, and how long it has been kept at room temperature. • Use by, Enjoy by, and Best if Used by Date (also called a Freshness Date) —This date relates to food quality as opposed to food safety. Manufacturers want you to enjoy their products, so this represents the recommended time in which you could expect the best flavor, quality and nutritional value. Consumption after this date would not necessarily mean that the food is unsafe. This type of date is used on shelf-stable foods such as canned goods, cereals, processed cheese and some snack foods. (Bakery . goods use either freshness or sell-by dating.) Stores often sell such goods at reduced prices for a short period after this date has passed. • Expiration Date —A rigid date, representing the last day on which consumers should use a product. Special-use products, such as baby formula, yeast, refrigerated dough and Pharmaceuticals make use of this type of dating, but you may find it on other products as well. Foods should be discarded after the expiration date has passed, as this is the time after which there is an increased risk of spoilage micro organisms. • Pack Date—This indicates when the food was first manufactured, processed or packaged. It lets you know how old the food is when you buy it. Pack dates are used with products that have shelf lives measured in months and years, such as canned, bottled and frozen foods. The information is typically used by stores so that they can properly rotate their stock. • Prepared On—This lets you know when a freshly prepared food item was made. This is often used for sandwiches and other deli foods. • Perishable frozen food dates — Perishable foods that are frozen before or immediately after packaging, and remain frozen until use, often bear a "Keep frozen, use within X days after thawing" statement. Whether or not there's a date on a package, it's common to find a separate set of letters and/or numbers there. This is the manufacturer's code, used to help identify when and where that particular package was made. Such information is used for quality control and is vital if a product recall is required. Finally, even with the presence of product dating, there's no guarantee of freshness or safety. The breakdown of food is a gradual process and doesn't take place on one particular day. The accuracy of any dating system relies on the proper handling of foods. If there's been any mishandling by the manufacturer, trucker, supermarket or consumer, the life — and safety—of the product can be compromised. In the end, consumers must trust their eyes, nose and palate in addition to those numbers stamped on a carton. If you notice an "off" taste, smell or appearance in a food product, forget the date and toss it out T

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