things we eat

You eat some funny things over there in the USA don’t you? Daz sent me a text saying you can buy deep fried strawberries. That seems a little unnecessary doesn’t it?

As I’ve mentioned before a lot of my cookbooks are American and they always use ingredients that I can’t find, Kale, collard greens, swiss chard whatever. I had a list of a few things I was keeping an eye out for – black turtle beans, chipotles in adobo sauce and liquid smoke. And I found them all one day at the same shop. The black beans were okay, until you mashed them up like refried beans then they looked kind of dirty, but I like them soaked and boiled. You can’t get them tinned so I had to do it the hard way and I can only buy huge bags of them so they’ll last a while. Although they seem to be in a lot of recipes, you guys must like them a lot. The chipotles I’m not so sure about. Although it was kind of fun to say to Daz, here get a fork and try one of those.  I think it’s because they have a smoky flavour and Iv’e never been a fan of smoked food. Which made the liquid smoke interesting. That is weird stuff! I had a recipe that used it with eggplant. You mixed the smoke with soy, brushed it on eggplant slices and baked them. To me they just tasted like really salty slices of eggplant with a smoky touch. I didn’t totally not like it but I think it will be an acquired taste.

Someone told me I can get kale sometimes at the farmers market so I should be able to cross that off my list next.

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26 thoughts on “things we eat

  1. I’ve never seen a deep fried strawberry either. A lot of the ingredients you’ve mentioned are used in “Tex-Mex” cooking, which can be put together in an apparently infinite variety. Last time I tried chipotle they were extremely hot, and I haven’t had the courage to try them again. They are jalapeno peppers that have been smoked.

    You sure have a sense of adventure!

    • Hopefully he has taken a photo of one. I imagine it being squishy in the centre. The chipotle was very hot – took me by surprise for sure. I don’t mind the heat but I don’t like the smoky flavour to them.

      I am a sucker for a cookbook Doug and most of the good vegan/vegetarian ones come from overseas so I’m always on the lookout for ingredients. I’m currently trying to work out what it is that you call a squash because it’s not what we call a squash I’m sure. Our squash are like zucchini

  2. All that deep-fried crap is state fair food and goes out of its way to be gross. That said, I do love me some black beans. We eat them all the time here in Southern California — a breakfast staple and certainly anytime we make Mexican/Baja food. Chipotles have their place, but have been a little too trendy in damn near everything for the past couple of years — a little goes a long way.

    Liquid smoke is gross.

    • I would love to find me some tinned black beans. I should just soak and cook some every weekend and have them in the fridge ready to go. No one here must eat them.

      Liquid smoke was pretty gross, but I’ll give it another chance in something else.

      • I was going to send you some cans of black beans, several months ago, till I found out the shipping cost. Maybe after my annual bonus!

        fyi: This year’s uber-gross fried food at the fair was deep fried BUTTER.

        • I didn’t have some posted from Melbourne for the same reason! I found a shop that sells them online in Melbourne but the postage just made it ridiculous. I don’t mind soaking and cooking them but I just don’t understand why we don’y have them over here.

          super uber gross

  3. “Deep fried strawberries” reminds me of this French chef I took a cooking class from years ago, when I was young, open-minded and willing to be yelled at. “Trust the Americans to take a perfect food and ruin it!” he screamed. He then threw at us students a sirloin steak that had been grilled a la American barbecue. I blame him for the start of my surrendering all attempts at cooking meat.

    As Steve said, black beans are a staple here in California. I prefer using them to the usual kidney beans in chili and burrito filler. Chipotles—meh. Liquid smoke—well, if you’re vegetarian but yearn for the flavor of bacon and ham, that’s a fair substitute. I use it in my vegetarian baked bean recipe so that even my carnivorous family enjoys it.

    • Yes, my liquid smoke was for a recipe in a vegan cookbook and my eggplant was meant to replace bacon in something. But I don’t miss the taste of meat so I’m not really interested in trying to replicate it. I don’t eat any fake meat either. But I have tried it now.

  4. A friend of mine came back from the states last month raving about boiled peanuts.

    I have never heard of liquid smoke before…all I can picture is the black goo they squeeze out of the arteries in that old anti-smoking ad that used to be on TV. I hope that’s not what it looks like.

    • Really? Not roasted and salted then.

      Lol, no it doesn’t look like that at all thank god because I wouldn’t be inclined to put that on my dinner. Runny, black and smelly – still doesn’t sound very appealing actually.

  5. I have never heard of deep fried strawberries, but it sounds better than the deep fried butter sticks I saw on TV at some state fair recently… ugh… I dont really care for kale, a little too bitter for my taste. And I do eat a lot of black beans…

    • Lol, that sounds disgusting! Trying to imagine biting into one.

      I don’t think I’m going to like kale much either, it looks a bit like spinach and I don’t like spinach. Kale looks like a serious vegetable eaters vegetable.

  6. I was going to mention the deep fried butter as well … I think it was at the Iowa State Fair. (Coated in a LOT of flower with sugar and cinnamon in it). At those things they’ll deep fry anything.

    • It just sounds so disgusting, I can’t even imagine it. Although I used to like deep fried camembert cheese so I guess its all just fat fried in fat. Over here I’ve heard of people crumbing and deep frying mars bars (chocolate bars). Hate to think of the calries in one of them.

  7. He’s in the Midwest, isn’t he? They’ll deep-fry anything there or in Texas. It’s a long-term idea that has become a fad. Most of the rest of us shake our heads and laugh.

    I live in California and don’t know anyone who eats kale or chard. I see it in the grocery store, so I guess someone does, but it has little tiny sections as opposed to the big sections for things like lettuce, carrots, broccoli, bok choy.

    The other stuff is definitely Mexican influence — we’ve got a giant fast-food chain called Chipotle, it’s so common! Heck, much of the burger-type places offer chipotle-based sauces. You can’t go anywhere without it.

    Liquid smoke IS disgusting. It’s so artificial. I’d rather char an ingredient if I had to get that flavor without meat.

    Black beans are fabulous, however. I don’t suppose you can get tortillas there? Because you can put anything into a burrito, veggie or meat or both, and have a fine, fine meal (that’s mostly what the aforementioned Chipotle sells — it’s McDonald’s with burritos instead of burgers). I suppose you could make do with some Middle-Eastern flatbread or stuff pita bread. But nothing beats a tortilla.

    I don’t care what the racists say; my taste buds thank God for the Mexicans.

    • I have no idea where he’s been really. He said he’s seen a lot of overweight policemen though so maybe they’re the ones hanging out at the fairs eating all the deep fried stuff.

      Kale must be all the rage at the moment, it’s in a lot of recipes – I think I’ll just substitute english spinach. We have tortillas here but I usually use lebanese bread instead – I can fit more in it. I like the sound of a Chipotle’s though, we don’t have anything like that here.

  8. Maybe you can find a more simple cook book. I don’t use any of those items in recipes. I like simple food that is easy to prepare. You are amazing, though, trying so many new things!! And no, a fried strawberry would be awful. A regular strawberry dipped in chocolate is served at wedding receptions.

    • Hi Freedom! Good to hear from you. The cookbooks I use are pretty simple because they’re all either vegetarian or vegan so it’s mainly all legumes and vegetables. I don’t even really like cooking, but I do like eating nice things so I’m always sucked in by a new cookbook.

  9. Chipotle(both the pepper and the fast food chain) are awesome-the burritos are HUGE and can be shared by 2 people(or a very hungry person-like my 15-year-old nephew).

    I’ve only had collard greens once(when I was visiting family in Louisiana).I thought they were okay.

    • I’d like to see one here. It’s hard for me to ever find any vegetarian takeaway fast food type of thing. Only really have KFC, McDonalds and Subway type places. Better for my waistline I guess.

  10. I agree with the others – a county fair will be a revelation. Boyfriend and I went to one earlier this month. They had deep-fried Kool-aid. Chocolate-covered bacon. I had a garlic-mac & cheese-bacon muffin. It was gorgeous.

    I admire your courage – but do remember, over here everything is a likely candidate for deep-frying!

    • And I should hope not!!! Although I must admit that if my kids didn’t like the taste of something, I always found that they changed their minds if I wrapped the offensive item in puff pastry. I believe puff pastry makes anything taste better.

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