Category Archives: Food and drink

Food and drink

Contents
Red Bush Spiced Tea
How To Eat RAW Chickpeas (Garbanzos, Chana, Grams)
Chicken Noodle Stir Fry April time capsule
Pancake Day – andyroberts – Storify
Cooking Monkfish with Cider in Galicia
Pictures of stuff on shelves
Absinthe Paraphernalia

Red Bush Spiced Tea

If you drink tea instead of coffee because the day is getting later and you don’t want coffee to keep you awake later when you go to bed, well did you know that a cup of tea contains about a half as much caffeine as a cup of instant coffee anyway? People who enjoy a nice cup of tea tend to carry on drinking several or many cups a day, so the total caffeine intake can become the equivalent to drinking two or three cups of coffee in the afternoon and evening, which is asking for trouble right?

I don’t drink beer and wine very often these days, and I’ve never enjoyed fizzy sugar drinks so I started drinking herbal teas decades ago of various sorts, and some are really good but only in small doses. Then I discovered the Rooibos or Redbush tea, branded as “11 O’Clock” or “Tick Tock” which is a caffeine free herb tea that actually tastes more like black tea than the green herb and fruit concoctions, and quite soon becomes an acquired taste that is actually more satisfying and thirst quenching than black tea, breakfast tea, indian tea, tea tea etc. So it’s good news that Rooibos is actually good for you with lots of antioxidants, and not in any way bad for the health.

Now rewind a decade or two and somewhere in East London I discovered Palanquin Spiced Tea. If you’ve ever ordered masala tea in an Indian restaurant you may be familiar with the idea of pungent spices boiled with tea, usually boiled with the milk and sugar too.  Palanquin were the first to make it work as a tea bag, and not by any means as a pale imitation of the real thing.  You can get other spicy teas, such as Celestial Seasons Bengal Spiced, and the range of Yogi teas but the balance is all lop sided to my taste, whereas Palanquin gets it right. The only problem was, well two problems – availability was patchy. You could find Palanquin spicy teas in East London supermarkets for a while, but you know how fickle they can be with local products (Palanquin is now made in Essex) and being based on a black tea, you can only drink so many cups a day without getting overcome with tannins and caffeine, especially of you let it brew for a bit too long, in which case it just gets stronger and stronger. But now Palanquin have started blending Rooibos or Red Bush tea as well as the standard black tea, and red bush doesn’t do that. You can leave the teabag in the cup for half an hour if you like and it doesn’t get that stewed taste at all, it just goes cold. And when you’ve drunk the tea you can pour more boiling water over it and it makes a perfectly acceptable second cuppa. Roibos is everywhere now and there’s really little or no reason to drink black tea anymore, well maybe after a Turkish meal or something in a little glass.

But now for everyday tea drinking you can get red bush spiced tea from Palanquin and that’s just about the ultimate perfection as far as I can taste, if you can find it. Or order online one day when the website ordering system is up and running properly.

http://palanquin-tea.com/

Red Bush

Caffeine free

Palanquin Red Bush Tea, with its many positive health benefits is a great choice for health conscious people.

Red Bush

Cinnamon

Ginger

Cloves

Black Pepper

Cardamom

 

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Food and drink, health | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Red Bush Spiced Tea

How To Eat RAW Chickpeas (Garbanzos, Chana, Grams)

You don’t have to boil chickpeas for forty minutes or more to make them edible, you can eat them raw if you just allow them to go through a natural process that converts the inedible dry starches into tender sweet tasting legumes.

Raw Hummus with Sprouted Chickpeas Recipe

Sprouted Chick Peas And Raw Hummus

I won’t witter on about my record player again today, although the novelty of having one working still gives much pleasure, no I’m going to indulge another interest of mine – food.

The food is sprouted chickpea hummus.

I’ve been making raw hummus from sprouted chick peas regularly for months now,  and the recipe has settled down without much in the way of variation. It’s easy enough, nutritious, cheap and tastes great, so why tamper with an almost perfect recipe? Today I discovered a small improvement through the use of  brown chick peas instead of the usual light coloured ones. I tasted a few of the sprouted brown chick peas whole before mashing them up and the flavour is stronger, more like that of fresh green peas and less starchy, so that was promising and the resulting hummous didn’t disappoint either.   I don’t seem to have any photographs of my home made sprouted chick pea hummus and I don’t really do recipes with measured ingredients lists and separate methods, because that’s not how I cook so I’ll just list the contents and explain the minimum necessary.

The main thing I suppose is getting the chickpeas to sprout with a close to sprout with a close to 100% success rate. Soak overnight first and most of the next day, so about 16-20 hours is the kind of  time, as long as the dried peas have finished swelling up. It’s best to do a small quantity and then start up another batch a day or so later, rather than have too many at the same stage at once. So I use a glass jar, with the dried peas filling about 10 % of the jar, filled with water. The chick peas then swell to fill about a quarter of the jar, and I find that laying the jar on its  side prevents swelling peas from getting jammed in against each others, which is not the effect you want. They need to be able to move of their own accord if they want to. OK, so once soaked they need to be rinsed in cold water and the easiest way to do that is in situ, using a piece of muslin over the neck of the jar, fastened in place with a rubber band. That’s the best way to sprout stuff, in glass not plastic. The sprouts are rinsed again about twice a day, and are kept in the daylight in front of a window during the daytime, then I move them away from any cold draughts at night. This way I seem to be able to keep up production all the year around whereas previously I used to have trouble from around November onwards.

The sprouts are ready to eat raw in just about 2 days after soaking. Once the little white shoots are clearly visible on nearly all the chick peas, and before they are much longer than about one centimetre. You CAN let them grow on a bit bigger but they don’t improve and there is a risk of something going off so I think it’s best to halt the process and either consume or refrigerate the sprouts once the conversion of storage into growth has occurred and you can see the root shoot starting to move out from the little globe of transformed starches.

So that’s how to sprout chick peas, now for making the hummus.

Place the sprouts in a food processor, I use a moulinex mini chopper but anything with chopping blades will do. Don’t use a liquidiser goblet though, they just burn out when you add the tahini and everything slows down. Trust me, I tried several brands and anything less than a super expensive industrial grade liquidiser won’t last long under the demand.

Add cloves of garlic. To give an idea of quantities, I’m talking about enough hummus for two people’s substantial lunch here and that comprises half an ordinary coffee jar of sprouted chick peas, three small cloves of garlic or one big one. That sort of thing.

Start up the chopper, or ‘blitz’ the mixture I think is the current terminology for engaging kitchen power tools….  to roughly chop the peas and garlic together. Add a generous quantity of olive oil and chop finer, almost to a paste now. The rest of the ingredients are a good dash of cider  vinegar or white wine vinegar and some lemon juice. These are interchangeable really, so if you run out of lemons that’s not an obstacle. Black pepper, just a pinch of salt – commercial hummus is much too salty, for shelf life purposes. A pinch of cayenne pepper or chilli powder. A teaspoonful of sesame seeds. The tahini itself goes in last, after giving everything else a good blending, about a tablespoonful, including some of the oil if your sesame paste has separated a bit, which is quite normal with some brands. The ‘light’ tahini is perfectly acceptable too, but seems to just work out a bit more expensive because you tend to use more of it.

Now then, after adding the tahini and starting up the mixing machine again, everything will slow down and start to gum up because tahini is thick and sticky. Don’t carry on very long at that stage because that’s how you burn out motors. The trick now, is to start to add a small quantity of water, then a bit more, until the mixture frees up and blends to a paste, still with a bit of coarse texture though and then that’s perfect. Done.

So that was my recipe and technique for making sprouted chickpea hummus, an ideal raw food vegan nutritious and tasty meal or snack food.

With thanks to Dave’s Experiential Kitchen years ago for getting me started, and to Ian Tindal for the suggestion of sprouting brown chick peas.

 

 

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Food and drink | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on How To Eat RAW Chickpeas (Garbanzos, Chana, Grams)

Chicken Noodle Stir Fry April time capsule

Chicken Noodle Stir Fry – Steamy

Chicken Noodle Stir Fry – steamy

Taken April 5, 2011 at 5:19 pm

 

Chicken Noodle Stir Fry

Chicken Noodle Stir Fry

Taken April 6, 2011 at 3:51 pm

 

Chicken Stir Fry Ingredients

Chicken Stir Fry Ingredients

Taken April 5, 2011 at 4:25 pm

 

Chicken Noodle Stir Fry

Chicken Noodle Stir Fry

Taken April 5, 2011 at 5:20 pm

 

Wanstead Park

 

via posterous

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , ,

Posted in Food and drink, London | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Chicken Noodle Stir Fry April time capsule

Pancake Day – andyroberts – Storify

Storified by Andy Roberts
  • 6
  • 6
  • 2

 

Pancake Day

 

Shrove Tuesday is also known as pancake day. One of the few days in the year when you are almost obligedbto eat a particular food item, like hot cross buns at easter and all sorts of things at christmas.

  1. Share
    Making galettes, of course.
    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

     

     

  2. Share
    How To Make Perfect Pancakes
    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

     

     

  3. Share
    Making galettes, of course.
    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

     

     

  4. Share
    VIDEO RECIPE – PANCAKES
    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

     

     

  5. Share

    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

     

     

  6. Share

    #yummy #pancake #love
    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

     

     

  7. Share
    Making galettes, of course.
    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

     

     

  8. Share

    #poffertjes #tinypancakes #pancake #tiny #sugar #butter #dinner #food #yum #nice #lovely #instagood #instafood #instagram #statigram #camera #picture #iphone #iphone4
    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

     

     

  9. Share
    Making galettes, of course.
    Wed, Feb 22 2012 02:22:27

via posterous

Posted in Calendar, Food and drink, UK | Comments Off on Pancake Day – andyroberts – Storify

Cooking Monkfish with Cider in Galicia

Hello, I’m cooking fresh fish with cider over a trangia camping stove in sunny Galicia, northern Spain.

With videography by Evan Roberts, this youTube is pretty self explanatory.

The actual location is a campsite at Camping Moreiras, O Grove, Pontevedra, Galicia. The fish, a whole monkfish, came from the fish market on the harbour at O Grove itself, as did the vegetables and the cider is an Asturian Sidra Natural obtaine en route from one of many Eroski supermarkets.

Just a bit of fun really, but it captures one of many happy mealtimes from a memorable holiday touring Asturias and Galicia in September 2011. There are loads of photos online  at both my collection and Linda’s Flickr  photostreams.

 

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Cider, Flickr, Food and drink, Spain, video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Cooking Monkfish with Cider in Galicia

Pictures of stuff on shelves

lots of pictures of shelves full of stuff 

 

via posterous

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Food and drink, General, Randomness | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Pictures of stuff on shelves

Absinthe Paraphernalia

Absinthe Paraphanalia by AndyRob
Absinthe Paraphanalia, a photo by AndyRob on Flickr.

Can you just imagine what kind of havoc could be wreaked on a party by turning up with this Absinthe paraphernalia a couple of bottles of the 60% stuff? Ok, this is apparantly an absinthe fountain, which is used not for dispensing absinthe itself, but for water. Absinthe is rarely drunk neat, because alcohol at that strength burns flesh so an absinthe fountain is a neccessary accessory for delivering the right amount of ice-cold water into a glass of absinthe. The sugar cube and silver slotted spoon would appear a bit frivolous but no doubt seemed like a good idea at the time.

Spotted in Paris Breaks to the Marais

More Paris Breaks in the Marais

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Food and drink, Paris Breaks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Absinthe Paraphernalia

Thanks for reading Andy Roberts articles about Food and drink on the DARnet Blog