caribbeanandworldrecipes

August 2, 2012

West Indian Cherry

Filed under: gardening, travel — Tags: , , , , — caribbeanandworldrecipes @ 2:10 am

West Indian Cherry Snapshot

West Indian cherry (acerola) is popular as a snack and in cold beverages.

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July 26, 2012

Eggplant, Mushrooms, and Onions With Wild Rice

Filed under: gardening, outdoors, recipes, travel — Tags: , , , , , , , — caribbeanandworldrecipes @ 4:42 am
English: Three varieties of Eggplant

English: Three varieties of Eggplant (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Skillet style side dish is the perfect accompaniment to beef, chicken, or pork. Sautéed eggplant, button mushrooms, and chopped yellow onion are seasoned with garlic, Italian seasoning, coarse sea salt, and fresh ground pepper. Vegetable mixture is combined with chicken broth, cream of mushroom soup, half-and-half, and cooked wild rice. Simmered 15 minutes until liquids are absorbed and flavors have had a chance to mingle. Serve hot with your favorite entrée.

Cook’s Notes:
As eggplant can be bitter, I recommend lightly salting the eggplant cubes and placing them in a strainer or colander for half an hour. The salt draws out any excess liquid, resulting in a milder flavored eggplant.

Substitute your favorite mushroom, such as shiitake or Portobello for a heartier dish.

Eggplant, Mushrooms, and Onions with Wild Rice

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons Salted Butter
3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
1 Large Eggplant, peeled and cubed
1 Medium Yellow Onion, chopped
1 (8 ounces) package Sliced Fresh Button Mushrooms,
1/2 teaspoon Garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/4 teaspoon Fresh Ground Black Pepper
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1 cup Low Sodium Chicken Broth
1 (10.75 ounces) can Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/2 cup Half-and-Half
1 cup Cooked Wild Rice

Preparation:

1. Heat the butter and 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet.

2. Stir in the eggplant, and fry until tender, which takes about 5 minutes.

3. Remove the eggplant from the skillet, and keep warm.

4. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil to the skillet.

5. Stir in the onion and mushrooms and fry until they are tender, which takes about 5 minutes.

6. Return the eggplant to the pan, and season with the minced garlic, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.

7. Cook and stir for one minute to blend the flavors.

8. Stir in the chicken broth, and simmer for about 5 minutes, until most of the liquid is reduced or absorbed.

9. Stir in the cream of mushroom soup, half-and-half and the cooked wild rice.

10. Simmer the mixture over low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

11. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper if desired.

cooking class is a great way to learn how to prepare and cook eggplant the way the professionals do, or head over to http://www.EggplantRecipes.net, for the best, taste-tested eggplant recipes.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Tom_Lingle

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July 19, 2012

Grapes That Make the Best Wine

Filed under: culture, gardening, health, recipes, travel — Tags: , , , — caribbeanandworldrecipes @ 10:57 pm

The wine making process can make wine out of any fruit that contains residual sugar after harvesting. I can guarantee that many of these wines will have some alcohol in them, but most will not be very tasty since they are usually sweet and poorly balanced. The grape has emerged as the champion wine making fruit over the years because it contains the highest sugar of most other fruits and yields about 11 percent alcohol. The tartaric acid and tannins found exclusively in grapes is responsible for its unique tastes. There probably is also a little snob appeal since grapes have royal origins, and fruit wines are more associated with home brews during prohibition.

The variety of grape is the most important factor in your wine’s style and taste. Of course red grapes make red wine and white grapes make white wine, but many other factors such as levels of sugar, acidity, and tannins make a huge difference in taste. The varieties discussed below have proven over the years to make the best wine and are the most popular. Any new research in developing new vines looks at tweaking these varieties to be more disease resistant, more productive, and to grow in colder climates. Most of these wines originated in Europe, but now are planted around the world in temperate climates.

Top White Wines

 

  • The Chardonnay grape variety is a classic white wine grape grown all around the world. Origins are in the Burgundy and Champagne regions of France. It makes a full bodied, complex wine that is often aged in oak.
  • The Sauvignon Blanc grape from Loire and Bordeaux can be grown in warmer regions and are higher in acid that most whites. It is often identified by its grassy flavor, and is often called Fume Blanc.
  • The Pinot Blanc grape is used to produce light, dry, pleasant white wines. It originated in Alsace region of France.
  • The Pinot Gris grape variety is known as Pinot Grigio in Italy and Rulander in Germany. In general it produces wines of average quality except in Alsace and Tuscany.
  • Riesling makes wines from very dry to very sweet but are usually made in semi-dry styles that accent the fruity flavors. They are originally form the Moselle and Rhine valleys of Germany as and the Alsace region of France.
  • Gewurztraminer originated in Germany and Alsace and is known for its floral fragrance and spicy flavor. It grows well in cool climates..
  • The Viognier grape from the Rhone valley is becoming more popular as more is planted in California. It makes wines of medium body with a fruity flavor..
  • Chenin Blanc is a white grape from the Loire Valley (Vouvray). It makes white wines that are fragrant and high in acid, and is often used as a base for jug wine.
  • The Muscat family makes wines that are generally sweet and very floral. It is known as Moscato in Italy and Moscatel in Spain and also is often used for sparkling wines.

Top Red Wines 

 

White grapes used for wine

  • The premier red wine grape is Cabernet Sauvignon and is the dominant grape in the Bordeaux region of France. The Cabernet Sauvignon grape produces distinctive wines that are tannic and full bodied. They are always barreled in oak and may age for up to 10 years in the bottle..
  • The Merlot grape is very similar to Cabernet Sauvignon but makes a wine lower in tannins that matures faster and is softer in texture. Merlot is blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to make the famous “Bordeaux Blend” which is know as Meritage in the US.
  • Pinot Noir is the top wine in the Burgundy region of France. It is also a major grape in most fine quality Champagne and sparkling wines. It low in tannin and relatively high in acid and produces a medium body wine with exceptional flavor.
  • Known as Syrah in France and Shiraz in Australia, this grape originated in Persia. It produces full bodied wines of intense color and flavor.
  • Zinfandel’s origin is unknown and it is grown almost exclusively in California. It probably arrived in the US from Italy or Croatia. This grape makes solid red wines with good fruit and structure. It was popular with home winemakers during prohibition and were the only vines that survived those “dark ages”.
  • Sangiovese is the primary grape grown in Italy’s Tuscany and is used to make Chianti. Sangiovese wines are spicy, have a smooth texture, medium body and good acid levels,.
  • Barbera is a red wine grape grown mostly in Italy. It has some of the flavor characteristics you would find in Cabernet Sauvignon but with higher acid levels
  • Cabernet Franc is a grape most often used in Bordeaux blends to add acidity and aroma. It is lighter and fruitier than Cabernet Sauvignon and was first planted in the Loire region of France.
  • Carignane grapes are widely planted throughout the world. They originated in Spain and grow well in Mediterranean climates. Wines are full bodied with strong fruit and tannin characteristics.
  • The Gamay grape started in the Beaujolais region of France. These wines are light, low in alcohol, high in acidity and very fruity. They should not be aged very long
  • Grenache grapes are a sweet grape that started in the Rhone valley. It is one of the most popular because its wines are fruity, full in flavor, and have overtones of spice. It is often the base for jug wines.

 

Gino Marino is a grape growing and wine making expert. You can find out more about grapes and wines at http://www.grapesmakewine.com.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Gino_Marino

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August 30, 2011

Trumpet Vine Flowers

Trumpet vine flowers are bright and colorful. The trumpet vine grows very quickly and can sometimes get out of control if it isn’t monitored. The vine can grow as high as 40 feet tall.

Trumpet vine flowers bloom early in spring. It can take up to five years for the vine to start blooming.

Trumpet vine flowers are good for attracting butterflies. They come in red, yellow and yellow orange. Butterflies are attracted to red, orange, purple and yellow blossoms.

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