Thanksgiving 2008

This was a good alternative to the traditional Thanksgiving turkey.

  • half a dozen chicken breasts, skinned
  • 1/2 stick (1") cinnamon, halved
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 t ginger
  • 1/2 t curry powder
  • 1/4 t cumin
  • 1/4 t garam masala
  • 1/4 t red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 t tumeric
  • 1 C chicken broth (1 bouillon cube in water)
  • 1/2 t chopped chives
  • 1/2 t cilantro

  1. Arrange chicken in microwave dish, meaty side up.
  2. Boil water, bouillon cube, and cinnamon stick until bouillon cube is dissolved.
  3. Mix ginger, curry, cumin, pepper flakes, tumeric. Rub a pinch or so into top of each chicken breast. Mix remainder into broth.
  4. Sprinkle chives and cilantro over chicken.
  5. Mince garlic, sprinkle over chicken.
  6. Dice onion, sprinkle over chicken.
  7. Pour broth over chicken.
  8. Microwave @ 100% for 10 minutes, 30% for 120 minutes.
  9. Check chicken, if tender, serve over rice.

Christmas Jello Salad

I imagine the flavours - and colours - could be varied, too. Maybe lime gelatin instead of strawberry, for 1/2 the recipe.
  • 2 C boiling water
  • 12 oz Strawberry gelatin
  • 32 oz frozen strawberries
  • 20 oz can crushed pineapple
  • 16 oz sour cream

  1. Dissolve gelatin in boiling water.
  2. Add strawberries, cut into small cubes to help unfreeze faster.
  3. Dump in pineapple.
  4. Work quickly before gelatin thickens.
  5. Pour half of gelatin mixture into a 16" x 2" flat pan.
  6. Spread sour cream over top.
  7. Pour other half of gelatin mixture over sour cream.
  8. Refrigerate.

Cabbage Soup

Cabbage is a pretty versatile vegetable - lots of other vegs go with it easily.

  • 1 head cabbage
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 or 3 carrots
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1 or 2 potatoes
  • 1/2 t black pepper / peppercorns
  • 1/4 t cayenne pepper
  • 1 t caraway seed / 1/2 t caraway
  • 1/2 t celery seed / 1/4 C chopped celery
  • 1/2 t mustard seed / 1/4 t ground mustard
  • 4 cups chicken or beef stock (4 bouillon cubes in boiling water until dissolved)
  • 1/2 t vinegar

  1. Chop cabbage, onions, garlic, any other veg that looks interesting, dump into stew pot.
  2. Mix stock, vinegar, and spices, boil, dump into veg mixture.
  3. Microwave @ 100% for 5 minutes, 30% for 120 minutes.
  4. Check cabbage, if tender, serve.

Don't Eat Raw Taro Leaves

As you cook your favourite recipes, you may use many exciting and exotic ingredients. Some vegetables that you may cook, you may be curious about what they taste like by themselves, maybe raw. Sometimes, as you prepare your favourite recipe, you may nibble on raw vegetables. Why not? Raw veggies are a great snack.

Not so, for raw taro.

Don't eat raw taro, and especially don't let kids nibble on raw taro leaves. See WikiPedia: Taro, or "Cooking", for more information. You may, alternatively, read my real life tale in Nitecruzr's Better Health And Living: Taro - Toxic When Raw.

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Black Bean / Taro Leaf Soup

Black Bean Soup, if you make it from dried beans, takes some planning (start the night before serving). But it's worth the time it takes. Add taro leaves, for even more flavour (with more garlic and vinegar), to my normal black bean soup. Garnished with a little salsa and sour cream. Yumm Yumm.

  • 1 C dried black beans
  • water, lots of it
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, minced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 rib celery, diced
  • 2 bouillon cubes
  • 1/2 t black pepper
  • 1/2 t cumin
  • 1/4 t cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 t cilantro
  • 1/4 t oregano
  • 2 t vinegar
  • 3 - 4 good size taro leaves (total of 3 or 4 square feet surface area of leaves) (** Observe caution with raw taro leaves)

  1. Soak beans overnight in water - start mid evening - 12 hours is good. A clear 2 Quart Pyrex utility bowl is perfect for this task - you can look thru the sides for debris. And the sides are marked for measuring.

    • Pour beans into bowl.
    • Cover with water, 1 inch over top of beans.
    • Let it sit for a couple hours.
    • Pick floating debris out of water.
    • Drain, rinse, repeat this til bedtime.

  2. Cover bowl, and put in refrigerator. I'm told undried beans sitting out overnight will ferment.
  3. Cut the stems from the taro leaves. Wash leaves well, remove all grit and insects. Soak leaves overnight if possible.
  4. The next day, drain and rinse beans one last time, cover with water, 3 inches over top of beans. Add bouillon cubes.
  5. Bring to boil, and simmer 1 1/2 hours.
      In microwave:
    • Cook on High (100%) 10 minutes.
    • Cook on Low (30%) for 90 minutes.

  6. Drain the taro leaves. Cut the main and larger side veins from the leaves, and discard. Just cook the green part of leaves. Chop leaves into 1/2" square chunks.
  7. Add other ingredients, including leaves, to beans.
  8. Add enough water to 7 cups in the bowl.
  9. Bring to boil again, and simmer 2 hours.
      In microwave:
    • Cook on High (100%) 5 minutes.
    • Cook on Low (30%) for 2 hours. Get the beans and taro leaves nice and tender.

  10. Add enough water, again, to 6 cups in the bowl.
  11. Serve hot, over rice. Or let it sit in refrigerator until cool.