November 17, 2011

Do not like Cilantro It is Genetic

So Nutmeg has this friend,  Mr. High Maintenance (or “the lighting guy”) who he claims that he does not like Cilantro.  We have all thought for years that he is well; Mr. High Maintenance – you get the picture.  So today on the step-mill at the gym Nutmeg was stunned to find out that apparently it is true!! There is a study that has been done to understand the link between DNA and dietary preferences. 
You can read the full article in Maclean’s Magazine (May 17, 2010).  The study has been co-authored by Dr. Oz (yes his real name). The field is called “nutrigenomics” which is the pursuit of identifying the right diet for your genes. The theory is that people may not process and digest food in the same way due to unique gene make-up.  Apparently, via a simple mouth swab, they can determine what kind of diet you should be on. 
In addition, a study has been done by…

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November 12, 2011

Quinoa Salad Facts

Quinoa pronounced “keen-wha” is a really old grain.  It is classified as a pseudocereal, which means it is not a cereal or a grain.  Quinoa is a chenopod, so it is the same family as beets and spinach.  It was a sacred grain for the Inca’s, who called it chissaya mama “mother of all grains”.  It has been cultivated for over 6000 years in the Andes.  It does not grow like a rice; quinoa has a long growing season, likes well drained soil and easily grows at high altitudes up to 4000 meters.  The Spanish conquistadors (really bad guys) who called it “food for Indians” forbade the production and strongly encouraged the farming of corn (maize).  Quinoa is also really good for you, it is gluten-free, high in phosphorus, magnesium, iron and it is high in protein.  Best of all it cooks in 15 minutes or less.
Ginger hates quinoa but he is away…. so Nutmeg (who loves it) got…

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November 6, 2011

Crunchy Granola Sweet

Are you a Neil Diamond fan?  Nutmeg is for certain.  She is also a big granola fan and has been for many years.
Hot Sauce used to make homemade granola on a regular basis. There is nothing like the smell of a fresh batch in your house and eating it hot out of the oven.  The basic ingredients usually include: oats, nuts, wheat germ, dried fruit, sugar (or honey or molasses or maple syrup), oil. You can also add spices like cinnamon or ginger depending on your tastes.  Nutmeg loves granola served with berries and yogurt, Chili likes the same in different proportions (more granola and less fruit).  There are likely as many recipes for granola as there are for combinations of how to eat it.
Granola actually has a history prior to Neil Diamond’s “Crunchy Granola Suite” and prior to the hippie “granola” movement in the 1960’s.  The names Granula (invented in 1894 by Dr James Caleb Jackson) and Granola…

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November 5, 2011

Happy Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day to CardaMOM, Dilly-Gilly, Hot Sauce, Cayenne, Cinnamon, Cilantro, Mint, Curry Murray, Sage, Bearnaise and many more of you out there.
This day was NOT invented by Hallmark or the card industry, in fact it has a long history.  It is celebrated in many countries during May, although in some places the festivities occur in March and April.   Here is some of the history:
The day emerged from a custom of mother worship in ancient Greece, which kept a festival to Cybele, a great mother of Greek gods. This festival was held around the Vernal Equinox around Asia Minor and eventually in Rome itself from the Ides of March (March15-18). The ancient Romans also had another holiday, Matronalia, that was dedicated to the god Juno.  Mothers were usually given small gifts on this day.
In Europe there were several long-standing traditions where a specific Sunday was set aside to honor motherhood and mothers such as Mothering Sunday. Mothering Sunday celebrations…

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November 2, 2011

What is a Smorgasbord

As you know Hot Sauce and Chili are cruising around Scandinavia in their new car.  This week on a ferry they were able to sail and eat from the on-board smörgåsbord. Hot Sauce is still sorting out how to text from her phone so let me just say that her reporting was a bit lacking.  So, Nutmeg thought it would be good to do a bit of research, as it sure sounds better than “buffet”.
Have you every wondered what is a smörgåsbord?  It is a type of Scandinavian meal served buffet-style with multiple dishes of various foods on a table, originating in Sweden. In Norway it is called koldtbord and in Denmark it is called kolde bord. Smörgåsbord became internationally known as smörgåsbord at the 1939 New York World’s Fair when it was offered at the Swedish Pavilion Restaurant.  Members of the Swedish merchant and upper class in fourteenth-century Sweden and Finland served schnapps table (brännvinsbord), a small buffet…

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November 1, 2011

Grilled Fish Tacos on Cinco de Mayo

Need a dinner idea? Wondering what to serve for dinner on Cinco de Mayo in snowy Calgary?  Yes, for those of you who live in places that have normal weather – it is SNOWING!  So it calls for drastic measures; pull out the tequila and the Mexican beer.  Here is a Fish Taco recipe (care of Saffron):
Print Grilled Fish Tacos Recipe type: Main Dish Cuisine: Mexican Prep time:  10 mins Cook time:  10 mins Total time:  20 mins Serves: 4   This recipe is very easy, you can play with the fish, the level of spice and the toppings. Ingredients 1½ pounds Mahi Mahi A few Limes 1 Medium Red cabbage 1 Bunch Cilantro 1 Small Red Onion 8 Medium Tortillas ½ Cup Plain Yogurt ½ Cup Mayonnaise Salt and pepper, to taste Hot Sauce, to taste …

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October 29, 2011

European Road Trip 2010

Nutmeg’s parents (Hot Sauce and Chili) love to travel.  Last year, they put a mere 6000 nautical miles on their boat doing the Great Loop Miss Bim’s Adventures.  This year they have decide to take on Europe in 7 weeks and do a driving road trip.  They start the adventure in Gothenburg (Sweden), at the Volvo factory, with a tour and a new car.  They will have a GPS and are fully equipped with the latest technology to get from point to point.  However, Nutmeg is concerned they may not have done all their research, on the food and drink options that await them in the next few weeks.  So, the following is an overview of the trip and Nutmeg’s food guide to help them narrow down the endless possibilities:

City
Country
Food Possibilities

Copenhagen
Denmark
Frikadeller (meatballs), with cabbage and beets

Kristiansand
Norway
Smoked Salmon, Gravlax, Open faced sandwiches, Meats served with juniper berries and lingonberry jam.  One interesting  thing is that Norway is the world’s…

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October 28, 2011

What to serve for Cinqo de Mayo

Nutmeg had never heard of Cinco de Mayo before she moved to Calgary.  Think what you may, Nutmeg is no slouch!  She has consumed her fair share of tequila, upside down margaritas and cervezas (Spanish for beer) in particular Corona and Dos Equisover the years.  Despite years in liberal Quebec,  a well known eastern university and a good grounding in Toronto,  she had honestly never heard of Cinco de Mayo before her arrival in Calgary.  Ginger made sure she was properly educated in her first 60 days on the scene.  Nutmeg’s awakening led to 5-6 years of classic “house party” celebrations (no photos available.  These parties ranged from reasonable to the industrial size rental margarita machine to dancing with power-tools.  At that point, Nutmeg suggested the annual celebration may have run it’s course.
What is Cinqo de Mayo?
Cinco de Mayo (“fifth of May”) is a regional holiday in Mexico, primarily celebrated in the state of Puebla, with some limited recognition…

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October 21, 2011

The Iceberg Wedge a Classic Salad

Chili Pepper (Nutmeg’s Dad) loves the “wedge” salad.  Essentially, a large wedge of iceberg lettuce with blue cheese dressing.  This salad can be found in every steak restaurant in North America,  if they do not have it on the menu you may want to check their credentials.  There are of course variations on the classic theme; add bacon bits (real or not so real) or add tomato pieces (mostly for color) or nuts (way too healthy).  In the end there is very little nutritional value, although who really cares as it will most likely be followed by a rare steak and fully garnished baked potato.  The wedge salad is truly a classic, there are historical references to the lettuce from the 1920s and to the salad mixture from the 1950’s and 1960’s.
Print Iceberg Wedge a Classic Salad Recipe type: Salad Prep time:  5 mins Total time:  5 mins …

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October 19, 2011

Wondering About Dates try some Trail Bars

As you might have gathered Nutmeg is in the desert and it is not that warm so she has some time to add to all the really useful food information in this blog.  So the question about dates came to mind… Here are the facts:
The Date Palm (scientific name Phoenix dactylifera), also known as the Medjool palm is a tall, beautiful and majestic tree that is known for its edible sweet fruits, the dates. The tree belongs to the Arecaceae family and the genus Phoenix. The Date palm produces true real dates. It is the second most known and most useful palm tree in the world after the Coconut palm tree.
The Phoenix Dactylifera is one of the world’s oldest trees. It has been grown for thousands of years in hot, dry, desert regions throughout the world. It is an important multi­purpose tree in the Middle East, Asia and North Africa. The Date palm tree is a holy symbol. It was historically mentioned…

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