In Grandma's Kitchen (Part I)

Written by Ilonka Oszvald

One of my fondest childhood memories is being inrepparttar kitchen with my Hungarian grandmother. I loved watching her chopping vegetables, kneading dough, and leaning over bubbling pots in a kitchen that was always filled with wonderful aromas. I’d always help her after school—shelling peas or beans, scrubbing and peeling vegetables, and when I got older, helping to prepare dinner. My favorite was Friday dinner—we would always have some kind of savory soup followed by a noodle or sweet dish. I was always a sweet tooth and looked forward to egg noodles with eggs or jam, palacsinta (Hungarian crepes eaten with jam, cocoa, nuts or sweet cheese fillings), and, inrepparttar 150509 late summer, silvas gomboc (plum dumplings) topped with cinnamon sugar breadcrumbs.

Silvás Gomboc (Plum Dumplings)

The dough: 1 kg potatoes 3 egg yolks Tbsp butter A pinch of salt 1 cup flour

The filling: 2 pints of prune plums, pitted 1 box of sugar cubes Ground cinnamon for sprinkling on plums

Topping: 1 stick of butter/equivalent amount vegetable oil 2-3 cups breadcrumbs 4-5 Tbsp granulated sugar A few dashes of cinnamon

Cookrepparttar 150510 potatoes in salted water until done. Put a large stockpot of salted water to boil. Mashrepparttar 150511 potatoes and addrepparttar 150512 egg yolks, butter, salt, and flour (This can be done in a standing mixer withrepparttar 150513 dough attachment) Add more flour as needed to make a moist, firm dough. Rollrepparttar 150514 dough out on a floured board and place pitted plums ontorepparttar 150515 dough. Sprinklerepparttar 150516 plums with cinnamon and place a sugar cube inrepparttar 150517 center of each plum. Cutrepparttar 150518 dough in squares aroundrepparttar 150519 plums and form dumplings (dip fingers in water to “fasten”repparttar 150520 dough together if necessary). Place dumplings gently into boiling water. Cook untilrepparttar 150521 dumplings rise torepparttar 150522 surface and remove with a slotted spoon; set aside.

Meltrepparttar 150523 butter in a frying pan. Addrepparttar 150524 breadcrumbs and brown them over medium heat. Oncerepparttar 150525 breadcrumbs are browned, addrepparttar 150526 sugar and cinnamon.

Layerrepparttar 150527 dumplings and breadcrumb mixture in a heatproof casserole dish. Cover and warm inrepparttar 150528 oven until ready to serve. Serve with additional sugar sprinkled on top.

Sweet dishes, cakes, and cookies are a major component of Hungarian cuisine and Hungarian cooks are great at taking advantage of fresh, seasonal ingredients for their creations. Summer is a wonderful time to eat in Hungary—the abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables is amazing—gooseberries, melons, sour cherries, squash, beans, peas, tomatoes, and an abundance of fresh herbs to flavor and garnish dishes. Most Hungarians with a back yard plant fruit trees and vegetable gardens. My grandparents continued that tradition after they immigrated to Canada--we had a huge garden where we grew beans, peas, cabbage, different varieties of squash, tomatoes, carrots, parsnips, as well as essential herbs such as parsley and dill. We also had a cherry tree, pear tree, and a sour cherry tree. Sour cherries have recently become more widely available in North America—you can find fresh ones at local farmer's markets inrepparttar 150529 summer and canned/jarred varieties are available in specialty grocery stores (Trader Joe’s carries a good brand). Two of my favorite recipes feature sour cherries. The first is a wonderful chilled soup that refreshes even onrepparttar 150530 hottest summer day. The second is a simple, versatile dessert for those craving something fresh and fruity after dinner or with afternoon coffee.

Meggyleves (Sour Cherry Soup)

1 medium/large-sized jar of sour cherries (also known as Morello cherries), strained. 1 ½ liters water 150 g (or more to taste) 1 tsp ground cinnamon plus one cinnamon stick 2-3 pieces of lemon rind (make surerepparttar 150531 white part is trimmed off, otherwiserepparttar 150532 rind will be bitter) 1 cup sour cream 1 Tbsp flour (special blending flour for sauces/gravies works best)

Putrepparttar 150533 water, sugar, cinnamon, and lemon rind in a pot. Bring to a boil and cook over medium heat untilrepparttar 150534 liquid is well flavored. Discardrepparttar 150535 cinnamon stick and addrepparttar 150536 cherries. Cook over gentle heat for about 5 minutes. Mixrepparttar 150537 sour cream and flour until well blended. Add a ladle full ofrepparttar 150538 soup liquid and mix well. Pourrepparttar 150539 mixture intorepparttar 150540 soup and simmer gently until slightly thickened (about 5 minutes). Adjust sweetness by adding more sugar to taste. Letrepparttar 150541 mixture cool to room temperature and chill for 4 hours or overnight. Serve as a first course or as a dessert.

The strained sour cherry juice can be mixed with chilled mineral water is a refreshing drink.

This soup can also be made with gooseberries or apples. I have also had a tasty version of this soup made with a mixture of pears and plums and thickened with yogurt instead of sour cream.

This simple cake is a classic and can be put together in less than 30 minutes.

Frosty Adventures at Trader Joe’s (Part I.)

Written by Paul Rinehart

I was never a big fan of frozen foods, no matter how convenient they might be. That all changedrepparttar first time I walked into a Trader Joe’s. I was amazed atrepparttar 150508 selection andrepparttar 150509 quality ofrepparttar 150510 vegetables,repparttar 150511 seafood, and evenrepparttar 150512 chicken. Ideas started running through my head and I began to put into concoct a recipe. One such recipe is below.

Chicken with Pineapple and Edamame

For those of you who do not know what edamame (pronounced “Ed a ma may”) is: Edamame is a green soy bean, harvested atrepparttar 150513 height of ripening just right before it reaches its hardened state. You should try them boiled in their pods and sprinkled with salt—very delicious.

Ingredients (serves two):

Two chicken breasts (Trader Joe’s sells frozen ones in a big bag, be sure to let them thaw completely)

Soy Sauce to taste

Fresh Ginger, grated (a piecerepparttar 150514 size ofrepparttar 150515 top of your thumb would probably be a good start)

½ cup of diced pineapple (Trader Joe’s sells this too. Let this thaw before cooking with it)

½ cup shelled Edamame (Trader Joe’s sells these with bothrepparttar 150516 shells on andrepparttar 150517 shells off)

Pepper to taste

Prepare a marinade by pour some soy sauce into a bowl and addingrepparttar 150518 grated ginger. Choprepparttar 150519 chicken breasts into cubes and place intorepparttar 150520 marinade. Season with pepper. Set aside for at least 15 minutes to letrepparttar 150521 flavor soak in.

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