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Istanbul Spice Bazaar

The spice of life!

Around The World With Steve

As I indicated in a previous post, I have done quite a bit in Turkey, albeit, having the flu slowed me down significantly the last few days. Consequently, I haven’t had the time to post about all the places I have been. One of those places I discovered by mistake was the Spice Bazaar, i.e., I went on a long walk, that encompassed part of the Bosphorus shore line and came upon the Bazaar during this walk.

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Orange Walnut Chicken – Skillet Version

Looks deliciously delectable!

Realistic Cooking Ideas

Orange Walnut Chicken in Skillet Final Cover Picture

One of my favorites (and yes I have many favorites) dinner is Orange Walnut Chicken with Jasmine rice. This version is similar to my slow-cooker version except I make it on the stovetop, which adds a different flavor than in the slow cooker. Making it in the slow cooker is nice when you want to add all your ingredients and walk away. Years ago I did a lot of my cooking with the slow cooker. I took a lot of my stovetop recipes and converted them for the slow cooker. Now I am going back to the stovetop and am converting my slow cooker recipes back to the stovetop! This is one of my favorite “go to” recipes especially since I have enough left overs for a few days.

The chicken has the flavor from simmering the onions and browning the chicken. There are a lot of ways to present…

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LAMBRO -PSOMO ~ Greek Easter Bread

LAMBRO -PSOMO ~ Greek Easter Bread

Whether you are celebrating Passover or Easter, we’d like to wish you the best in sharing food and good times with friends and family.  We’d like to share this sweet bread recipe with you–Enjoy!

In My Kitchen/ Nicholas Tanis

LAMBROWREDEGGS

Yields:  1 Large Round Loaf and several smaller loaves

INGREDIENTS

4-5 pounds all-purpose flour, sifted with:

1 Tablespoon salt

4 yeast cakes, dissolved in 1 cup warm water

10 eggs well beaten with:

2 ½ cups sugar

2 cubes butter, melted in:

1 ½ cups milk

1 teaspoon allspice

1 ½ teaspoon anise

3 egg yolks, beaten with:

2-3 drops yellow food color

1/3 cup sesame seeds

5 hardboiled eggs, dyed red

PROCEDURE

Boil the allspice and the anise in 1 cup water and strain, reserving the water.

Place 4 pounds of the sifted flour and salt in a large mixing bowl (or an enamel basin), and make a well in the center of the flour.

Add the yeast that has been dissolved in the warm water.

Likewise add the eggs with the sugar mix, but do not knead.

Add the melted butter and milk mix, and the reserved liquid from the allspice/anise.

Now mix with your hands to blend all these ingredients thoroughly, slowly adding more sifted flour as may be needed.

Knead the dough until it is smooth.

Place the dough on floured wooden board, and continue to knead until firm and smooth and not sticky.

Brush the dough with some melted butter, then afterwards cover it with a tea towel, and set it in warm place to rise – (the top of the refrigerator) until it doubles in size.

Remove the dough and knead it again.

Once again, brush the dough with some melted butter, cover it, and place it to rise twice its size.

Repeat this process, one more time (three times total).

Place 2/3 of the dough and place into large round pan, about 12-inches in diameter, and 2-inches deep. Make sure the pan is greased.

The remainder of the dough may be used to make individual loaves as gifts, by baking in smaller pans. You may also use the remainder of the dough to decorate the top of the round loaf, by making “S” curl motif border, as well as “X” crosses* and  “O” circles around each hardboiled egg.

Place (pressing firmly) one red Easter egg in the center of the dough, and place the other eggs at 12, 3, 6, 9 o’clock (N.S.E.W.) as if making the tips of a Cross.

Cover the pan(s) and let it rise for several hours.

When the dough has risen, gently but generously brush (using small pastry brush) the entire top of the dough with the egg yolk mix, as if painting.

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Sprinkle the entire top of the bread with sesame seeds (as it adheres to the applied egg yolk).

Bake at 350 degrees for 2 hours (until the bread is a nice golden brown, and the dough inside does not stick to a knife (toothpick may be used to test as well). The bread should be somewhat

“soft” and “spongy”, unlike a hard bread.

NOTE: In making the small loaves, you may place an Easter egg in the center of each one and decorate accordingly to its size. Once again, brush with egg yolk, and sprinkle with sesame. Bake these at 350 degrees for about 45-minutes, depending upon the size of your pan.

If you braid the bread into a long loaf instead of placing into a round pan, then it is known as “Tsoureki”. This recipe will yield 3 bread twists. Bake at 350 degrees for about 1-hour.

TwistedLambro - rotated

Remove from oven and allow to cool, before removing it from the pan. In this manner the bread won’t break apart.

Place on a large round dish or a serving platter.

You may decorate the platter surrounding the bread with Easter eggs, and koulourakia* cookies, creating a sunburst effect.

*Stella D’Oro almond biscuits, or “S” breakfast treats, etc. may be substituted, with a sprinkling of mulit-coloured jelly beans.

NOTE: You can give your Easter eggs a nice shiny finish, by taking a ¼ square of paper towel and moisten it with olive oil. Rub each egg, being careful not to slip out of your hands. Then with a clean dry piece of paper towel, re-rub the egg, thus removing the excess oil but maintaining a lustrous sheen. This can be done to the eggs in the bread as well.

 

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Home Made Chicken Stock/Soup

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I start with the remains of a roasted chicken that has been put in the fridge overnight so that the fat from the juices can be removed by scraping it off the top layer.

INGREDIENTS:

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3 scallions

bunch of fresh cilantro

bunch of fresh dill (can also use the paste)

1 onion, diced

3 celery stalks, diced

3 cloves of garlic, minced

3 carrots, diced

5-6 mushrooms, diced

2 potatoes, diced (optional, adds starch, thickens stock/soup)

1 tub of extra firm tofu (for soup)

extra virgin olive oil

taragon

RECIPE:

Cover the base of a 12 Qt./11.7L/48cups stock pot with 3mm/1/8″ of EVOO

Add the scallion, carrots, onions and garlic and brown

Scrape the fat off of the roasted chicken pan

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Debone the chicken from the carcass (be careful to not leave any bones–especially if you are serving it to children!), and throw away the carcass (I actually use it, especially if I am careful later to remove any bones, but it is not always easy to do so, so best to discard it)

Dice the chicken and put in pot

Remove the roue form the bottom of the pan and add to the stock pot

Fill the stock pot 2/3 to the top wit water and bring to a boil, let simmer for 40 minutes

At the 40 minute mark, add the chopped mushrooms, cilantro and dill (can add a TBSP of paste in stead of fresh dill)

Add taragon to taste ( 2 pinches); salt and pepper to taste

Let simmer for another 25 minutes

(If you left the carcass–remove it and filter any bone out of the broth as best you can)

Voila–the stock is done!

You can serve the broth or cook some “pastina” in a 4Qt. sauce pan, drain it and cover with the broth and serve as soup

Shred some fresh parmigiano reggiano and enjoy!

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You can make it as much broth or soup as you like!  Store the stock in the fridge or freezer to use, as needed.

 

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