Buying and Prepping Bulb Onions

bulb onion

Bulb Onions

Sweet bulb onions look a little bit like green onions and scallions except for one thing – instead of a straight line from green to white or only a very small bulb, bulb onions have an obvious ping pong ball sized bulb at the end.

Scallions, also called green onions, are harvested before the bulb starts to form. Bulb onions are picked after the bulbs are  the size seen in the pic on the left.

When selecting bulb onions at the grocers look for onions that do not have soft squishy parts, split bulbs, or discoloration that can come either from age or poor handling during shipping. The greenery above should look freshly picked and be a beautiful deep green nearest the top, fading to light green as it reaches the bulb. Do not buy bulb onions if the greenery is browned or wilting. Read More


Prepping Baby Bok Choy

bok choy WM 350Bok choy is a type of Chinese cabbage with dark leaves attached to a base that looks rather like celery.

It comes in full grown and a baby variety that I particularly love.

It is delicious, easy to cook, wonderful in stir fries or sautés, low in calories, and very good for you.

To prepare bok choy, first slice off the tough end at the base of the plant. Read More


Emotional and Physical Health in a Stress-filled World

flowering cactus

You can flower under the harshest of conditions.

Has the state of the world today filled you with stress that threatens to harm both your mental and physical health?

The horrors that men inflict upon one another are not a problem of modernity. The only new thing under the sun is the sheer volume and immediacy of information.

There was a sense of security in the not knowing, a feeling that formed a sort of protection from having to acknowledge painful reality.

The world is not really different, it is the informational bubble wrap that live streaming, news videos, and social media conversations have removed.

Though it is terribly difficult to watch and read, modern media may also be what we need to change things for the better. Read More


Roasting Garlic, Two Ways

Garlic bulbThese are my two favorite ways to roast garlic.

The first creates beautifully aromatic individual cloves of garlic that are intended to be consumed whole.

The second melts the clove into a fragrant spreadable garlic that is perfect for slices of chewy Italian bread or for swirling in to your favorite recipe. Read More


Printing Mindfully

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image by David Vignoni and Wikimedia Commons

I have changed a feature of the website that I think will appeal to everyone!

Previously, when you wanted to print a recipe, the entire webpage printed. This is most annoying when all you want is a recipe and maybe a pic of the dish.

You will love the new Print and PDF button that will take care of the problem of wasting printer ink and paper on elements you do not want. Read More


Working with Active Dry Yeast

YeastBefore you bake that loaf of bread, let’s stop a moment and discuss the temperature.

I don’t mean how hot it is outside, I mean the right temperature of the liquids used to activate yeast so that your bread and rolls rise high and light.

You can be precise and use a thermometer, but as my Aunt-in-law Mama D always said – “Don’t make a federal case out of using yeast.”

I always listen to her.

The following three words are a great way to remember the non-federal case way to activate yeast. Read More


How to Roast Peppers

Pepper roasted

When a recipe calls for roasted red peppers, you may choose to buy them in a jar from your favorite store – or save some money and gain a little culinary confidence by roasting them yourself.

This process works for all peppers. Try roasting poblanos, hatch, and even jalapenos this way, just watch the smaller peppers a little more closely. Do not roast habaneros inside the house. Leave that to the hazmat suited professionals. Read More


Spaghetti Squash Mastery

450px-Spaghetti_Squash_cooked_and_prepared_3 aWinter squash is a vegetable that some people avoid because they are not sure how to cook it. Others give it a pass because the squashes are so very hard and they are afraid that it would be too difficult to cut. Let’s gain a little cookery confidence by improving our squash skills using the family friendly and fun spaghetti squash.

After you practice cooking it, slice it in half, remove the pulp and seeds in the center, and then discover how easy it is to drag the tines of a fork lengthwise through the squash to remove those long lovely and nutritious strands. Look at that beautiful mountain of squash!

Since you cooked it, you may as well serve it. The easiest way is to drizzle a bit of garlic and olive oil on top – or add a ladle of spaghetti sauce and a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.

Below are eight different ways to prepare spaghetti squash. Which one will be right for you? Read More


Selecting and Slicing a Fresh Pineapple

Pineapple goldenThe Spoon Mage™ loves her pineapple almost every day. Fresh pineapple is incredibly nutritious and does wonderful things for her arthritis. This magical banish my arthritis property comes from an anti-inflammatory enzyme called Bromelain that exists within fresh pineapple. Neither dried nor canned pineapple works as well on my pain, and forget about pineapple in a pill. Go fresh for less pain and great flavor!

A pre-cut pineapple is twice the price of a whole pineapple at the grocers. Even if you don’t have a pineapple slicer it is easy to slice up a pineapple. With practice, you will be a pro – a pro that saves money!

There is a great lot of pineapple inside the fruit. You will cut off what looks like an extravagant amount of the outside and it will make you feel wasteful. Not to worry, there is a lot left for you to eat.

To select the perfect pineapple, start by picking one up.  Read More


Wokking Made Easy

BeefBroccoliCarrot Stir FryBefore you slice the veggies and heat up the wok, there are a few things to understand about the Art of Wokkery.

While you can stir-fry in a large tall sided skillet, a wok is a good investment for creating kitchen magic. The veggies spread out and have greater contact with the heating surface in a wok. This helps you to stir up crispy veggies instead of letting them sit in a soggy mess.

You don’t need an expensive wok. I suggest getting one in your local Asian food store. I have seen them on sale there for $10. You might as well pick up an interesting veggie or two while you are there. Read More