Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Tag: Food

Borsch soup is a new front in the confrontation between Ukraine and Russia

Ukrainian celebrity chef Yevgen Klobotenko has clashed with Russia over Borsch soup, while also declaring that this popular dish of beetroot and cabbage is part of Kiev’s cultural heritage.

“I do not like the term Borsch War, but this is really the case,” said the 33-year-old young man, a graduate of the French cooking school “Le Cordon Bleu,” told AFP.

Dish in the Heritage List

The chef, who is popular on social media, took the soup inside a saucepan to a meeting at the Ministry of Culture in October to persuade it to propose the inclusion of this dish on UNESCO’s Intangible World Heritage List, which includes French gastronomy and pizza as made in Naples.

The ministry did not resist this offer, announcing the preparation of a file for UNESCO, which will close the door for nominations in March 2021. This initiative represented a blow to Russia, whose relations with Kiev had deteriorated to the lowest levels in seven years.

“Borsch is a national dish in several countries, including Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Poland, Romania, Moldova and Lithuania,” the Russian ambassador to the United States wrote in a tweet. A short while later, the Russian government described Borsch as one of the most popular and delicious Russian dishes, on its official Twitter account.

According to the Ukrainian version, eaters bearing this name were mentioned for the first time in 1548, in the notes of a European traveler who bought a share of them in a market in Kiev, and this soup arrived in Russia at a later period with the arrival of the Ukrainians.

Ukraine, which was part of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union, and whose large Russian population is proficient in Russia, remained largely within the political and cultural sphere of its powerful neighbor, even after the collapse of the Union in 1991.

Alakeela street, a new way of presenting different food tastes

Streets are named after good restaurants, and every food street has something different and special, and the distinctive street this time is Alakeela Street.

After the success of Murad Makram in the “Alakeel” program, he decided to take it to the business world by opening a street that includes a number of restaurants that offer different foods. The journalist and artist, Murad Makram, held the opening ceremony of Alakeel Street in October.

In the presence of the artist Donia Abdel Aziz, the artist Ahmed El-Shamy, Dr. Hany Abu El-Naga, the media Ahmed Salem, the culinary expert, Chef El-Sherbiny and Alaa El-Sherbiny’s daughter, and the party was organized by Sabah Jamil. Everyone in the audience enjoyed the music on Al-Akeel Street.

In order to open Al-Akeela Street, the artist Donia Abdel Aziz, the artist Ahmed El-Shamy, Dr. Hani Abu Al-Naja, the journalist Ahmed Salem, the expert chef El-Sherbiny, Alaa Al-Sherbini’s daughter, the businessman Omar Balbaa, the businessman Hossam Saad, the owner of the brand Almhaltta and the businessman Mohamed Al-Tajouri organized the ceremony.

A TikTok Chef Cooking A Fancy Meal While Isolated In A Hotel Room

Jago Randles, a chef from Cornwall, England, has been going viral on the app for the food he’s made using only the tools in his hotel room. He was recently quarantined in a hotel room in Vancouver, according to The Washington Post, and began posting videos of himself making everything from eggs Benedict to crème brûlée using things like his coffee maker and iron. He’s called it “Isolation Kitchen.”

One such video even caught the attention of Gordon, who posted one of his now-iconic Ramsay Reacts-style videos about it. In the TikTok in question, Randles makes chicken, asparagus, and an egg using the tools mentioned above. The video shows him laying the breaded chicken directly on the iron, popping the asparagus into the top of the coffee machine, and frying the egg in the bottom of the coffee maker with the help of parchment paper and what appears to be part of a mason jar lid.

How To Make the Easiest Broccoli-Cheese Casserole That Everyone Will Love

I wanted to share with you this classic broccoli cheese casserole I made the other night because everyone loved it — even the leftovers were fantastic.  We’ve had a run of chilly weather so I ditched the salad and made this super cozy side dish to go with our chicken.

If you’re wondering if your holiday table really needs another creamy casserole, let me tell you emphatically that the answer is yes.

This recipe doesn’t include canned soup or mayo ~

and there’s no bland rice or watery frozen broccoli to muck it up, so if you grew up with that kind of casserole, trust me and give this one a try.   It starts with a pound of barely steamed broccoli, a homemade white sauce, a good dose of good cheese, a couple of eggs help bind it together, and finally my secret ingredient, a grating of fresh nutmeg.  It’s a really good, workhorse of a recipe, it pairs well with so many meals, and pleases just about everyone.

Keep Your Casserole Easy with These 3 Steps

1. Blanch the broccoli. Blanching and draining the broccoli before adding it to the casserole prevents the broccoli’s moisture from ruining your cheese sauce. You can do this in advance, if you need to. And on really busy nights, you can use frozen broccoli florets instead.

2. Use an oven-safe skillet. Using one dish to cook the sauce and bake the casserole makes this dish even easier. We like a large cast iron skillet, but feel free to use whatever oven-safe skillet you’ve got. Alternatively, you can transfer this to a casserole dish before baking.

3. Bake, don’t broil! To avoid burning the crackers, you’ll actually want to bake, not broil this dish. The short bake time also helps thicken the cheese sauce!

Used our thanksgiving leftovers for a delicious turkey casserole!


  • 1 pound broccoli florets.
  • 3 Tbsp butter.
  • 3 Tbsp flour.
  • 2 cups whole or low fat milk.
  • 2 cups 8 ounces shredded cheese (I used an Italian cheese blend).
  • 2 large eggs whisked.
  • 1 tsp salt.
  • lots of fresh cracked black pepper.
  • a good grating of fresh nutmeg about 1/8 ~ 1/4 tsp, to taste.

8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (about 2 cups) 

1 1/2 cups crushed rectangular buttery crackers (about 40; such as Club) 

2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Place broccoli and water in a large microwavable bowl. Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and microwave on high until tender, about 8 minutes. Set aside.

Melt three tablespoons of the butter in a Dutch oven over medium-high. Add onion, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about five minutes. Add garlic, and cook, stirring occasionally, one minute. Sprinkle flour evenly over onion mixture, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Whisk in milk, and cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about two minutes. Reduce heat to medium, and whisk in mayonnaise, mustard, salt, and pepper until smooth. Add cheese, and stir until melted and smooth. Add broccoli, and stir to coat. Transfer to a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch broiler-proof baking dish, and cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Cover with aluminum foil, and chill until ready to bake, up to one day ahead.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Remove casserole from refrigerator while oven preheats. Bake, covered, until hot and bubbly, about one hour.

Place remaining one tablespoon butter in a medium-size microwavable bowl, and microwave on high until melted, about 15 seconds. Add crackers and parsley, and stir to combine. Sprinkle evenly over casserole. Increase oven temperature to broil on high, and broil casserole until top is golden brown, about one minute. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Apple-Cranberry Salad 

1 teaspoon stone-ground mustard 

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 

¼ cup olive oil 

1 apple, diced 

1 pear, diced 

¼ cup dried cranberries 

1 (10-ounce) package mixed baby greens 

¼ cup crumbled blue cheese 

2 tablespoons chopped walnuts 

Whisk the mustard and vinegar together in a small bowl. Drizzle in the olive oil while whisking to create a dressing; set aside. 

Place the apple, pear, cranberries, baby greens, blue cheese, and walnuts into a large salad bowl. Toss gently to mix, then pour on the dressing,

and toss to coat.

Green Bean Bundles

4 cans of whole green beans 

1 bottle Catalina dressing

1 pound bacon 

Creole seasoning

Salt and pepper


 Drain beans. Cut bacon in half. Take five to six beans and put them in a bunch, wrap with one piece of bacon. Insert toothpick. Depending on how many people you are feeding, I used the four cans of beans and one package of bacon for our dinner party. Usually it is two bundles per person.

I then put my bundles in a large bowl, just stack them on top of eat other. As I stack, I use my seasonings, not a lot but just lightly. I then cover my bundles with dressing. At least half the bottle, if not more. Put in the refrigerator overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, use a baking sheet, and lay them out close together. Use more seasoning, and then make sure they all have dressing on them. I usually just spoon the dressing over them. Bake until the bacon is done.  It takes about 35 to 40 minutes.

Marinated and Roasted Chicken, Potatoes, and Chickpeas

One other recipe for a delicious roasted chicken, potatoes and chickpeas

  • PREP TIME: 24 hours 10 minutes
  • COOK TIME: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • SERVES 4 to 6 people.
  • 400 grams chickpeas (about one 15-ounce can)
  • 800 grams (1 3/4 pounds) potatoes
  • medium head of garlic, cloves separated
  • bone in, skin on, chicken thighs
  • For the marinade:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • lemons, up to 3
  • 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon harissa paste (or to your taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon chile flakes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • 2 teaspoons dry-roasted whole cumin seeds, for garnish
  • 80 grams chopped coriander leaves and stalks, (or one small handful), for garnish
  • 300 milliliters Greek yogurt or tzatziki (or enough for each serving to have a generous dollop), for garnish Marinated and Roasted Chicken, Potatoes, and Chickpeas


  1. The day before, rinse and drain the chickpeas. Peel the potatoes and cut them into 3 inch chunks.
  2. Give the lemons 30 seconds or so in the microwave to help release more juice, or roll on a flat surface while applying a little pressure. Slice in half and squeeze out as much juice as you can. Mix the marinade ingredients together in a medium bowl. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  3. Place the chicken, chickpeas, potatoes, and garlic in a large freezer bag and pour in the marinade. Squeeze out the air and seal the bag. Flop it around a bit to make sure that the marinade gets everywhere. Place on a plate or in a bowl and pop in the fridge to marinate for a day. Turn the bag over whenever you open the fridge over the next 24 hours. (Alternatively, you can just mix the chicken, marinade, and other ingredients in a bowl, and place that bowl, covered, in the fridge, mixing occasionally as it marinates.)
  4. An hour or so before you are ready to eat, heat the oven to 200º C (375º F). Remove the bag from the fridge and tumble the contents into a roasting dish large enough for everything to be spread out. Season with salt and pepper. Cover the dish tightly with foil and cook for 1 hour. Remove the foil and cook for another 15 minutes or so, until the chicken skin and potatoes are crispy and cooked through, and the chickpeas get a little crunchy. Watch carefully to make sure the marinade does not go from gooey and delicious to a burnt crisp. Remove from the oven and scatter over the roasted cumin seeds and chopped coriander leaves.
  5. Serve with a dollop of Greek yoghurt or tzatziki on the side, and prepare to be worshipped.

Creamed Spinach Recipe

Good creamed spinach is a life-changing revelation. Here’s how to make it so you won’t have to reserve it for steakhouse dinners and holiday feasts.

tips for a tasty creamed spinach:

  • Yes you can use whole milk instead of half and half (go any less fatty and you’re not going to like the results)
  • You can also go the opposite way and use heavy cream. Your taste buds will love me, your jeans may not but hey it is the holidays!
  • If you’d prefer to use frozen spinach, just defrost and squeeze out as much water as you can. – Use 1 pound of frozen spinach.
  • Nutmeg may seem like a dessert spice but you’ll love the flavor in this recipe.
  • Aside from the classic Morton’s recipe I’ve added cream cheese and Parmesan cheese.


1 stick butter

8 tbsp. flour

1/2 whole medium onion, finely diced

3 cloves garlic, finely minced

2 c. milk

Salt and pepper, to taste

1 pinch ground nutmeg

3 tbsp. butter

24 oz. weight baby spinach.

The right way this creamed begins with a simple white sauce, which begins with a roux, which is a cooked mixture of butter and flour, which is the basis of a cream sauce, which, when bumped up a notch by finely diced onions and garlic, is one of the best things you’ll ever learn to make it.

Begin with 24 ounces of baby spinach washed and ready, then use four 6-ounce bags. That’s…uh…24 ounces.

You’ll need one smallish yellow onion.

Cut it in half, then halve one of the halves.

First make vertical slices very close together… Then rotate it and cut the other way to dice it.

You’ll need garlic, very finely mince about three cloves if you can HANDLE the garlic.

You’ll need two pots: one for the cream sauce, one for the spinach.

Throw 1 stick of butter into one of the pans over medium to medium-low heat, depending on how hot your stove is. My stove is hot, and these cast iron enameled pans get VERY hot. So I’m on medium-low here.

Melt the butter, then sprinkle in 8 tablespoons all-purpose flour.

Immediately begin whisking.

Cook this mixture, stirring frequently, for about five minutes.

Slowly, the roux will start to turn golden brown.

At this point, throw in the onions and garlic.

Stir together to combine and cook for another minute.

Then slowly pour in 2 cups of milk, whisking constantly.

Now just cook the sauce for about five minutes, stirring occasionally. It’ll gradually begin to thicken.

Meantime, you need to sauté the spinach. If you have a kid, make him or her whisk the sauce while you do the spinach. That’s why we gave birth to these numskulls, isn’t it?

Throw a few tablespoons of butter into a separate pot and let it melt.

Throw in as much of the spinach as you can. It might not all fit, but believe me, what’s in the pot will quickly begin to wilt and shrink. I added the total amount of spinach over three different additions. As soon as the level of spinach shrank a bit, I’d dump in more.

Man, do I love spinach. It’s just so…so…

If I said “green” would you hate me?

Slowly cook the spinach. It’ll move slowly at first, but once it starts to wilt it really picks up speed. Stir gently as it cooks, flipping it to get it to cook evenly.

You want to stop cooking the spinach when it’s completely wilted but NOT mushy and overcooked. Grab a leaf from the pan. It should be cooked and wilted, but still have a tiny bit of crunch to it. Hard to explain. You’ll understand when you experience it.

Back to the white sauce, it’s very, very thick right now, and almost resembles white gravy.

Add salt and plenty of finely ground black pepper. You can also add a couple of pinches of ground nutmeg, which I love.

Guess who took this shot? My nine-year-old daughter. I think it might have been an accident…but what an in-focus accident it was!

Now just spoon the spinach into the cream sauce.

Stir it gently, slowly incorporating the spinach and cream sauce, taking bites along the way because you absolutely can’t wait. Like, no one could PAY you to wait.

You always want to taste it before the very end anyway, adding more seasonings as needed. A little cayenne never hurt anyone, either.

Now, let me point out that you can add more sautéed spinach to the mix if you like things a little less creamy. But I’ll just tell you that as cream-laden as this looks, the balance really is perfect. Keep in mind that spinach does have quite a bit of flavor and texture, so the cream really does balance it out. Experiment, though, and find your perfect ratio.

Now serve it, and bon Appetit !

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