July 25th, 2006

How to steam-cook rice - the foolproof method

Since someone asked for it in a comment, here is a post I made a while ago on my journal about cooking rice the Asian way. As usual, it's long -- sorry, I like to waffle when I write about food... :-)

[EDITED TO ADD an important note: This method works for white rice only. I'm sure the general method works for brown rice too, but the cooking time would be different, and quite possibly the quantity of water too. Since I don't cook brown rice myself, I'm afraid I can't help with that.] [In my defence, I plead that Asians don't eat brown rice either, as an almost universal rule. I know nutritionally it's a lot better, but I get my fibre and vitamins and stuff from other whole grains, and I really don't like the taste of brown rice much, especially compared with white which is one of my favourite foods ever.]

Rice-cooking methodCollapse )
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white chocolate

last night i was bored and decided to melt some cocoa powder with sugar and a drop of soymilk to see if i could make white chocolate. i poured this into foil baking cups and stuck them in the freezer. those of you who know how to make white chocolate are probably laughing, because i ended up with a solid piece of cocoa butter with a sugary syrup at the bottom. how is white chocolate actually made? i haven't been able to find any recipes for it, just that it is made of cocoa butter, sugar, and possibly milk solids, vanilla, and lecithin. i'd really like to make some peppermint white chocolate. quality/appearance doesn't matter...i just haven't had white chocolate since going vegan, and had a huge craving after eating some white chocolate wonderful peanut butter. let me know if you can tell me how to do this.

Flapjacks, blackstrap molasses

5 tbsp margarine
3 tbsp golden syrup (or syrup of choice)
1.5 tbsp brown sugar
instant oatmeal

Melt the first 3 ingredients in a bowl, add enough oats to form a thick substance with doughlike consistency. Bake in a greased pan till the tops are browned. (this took only 5 mins in my oven toaster) Let cool, slice into squares, and turn the pieces upside down. Bake for another 5 minutes, until this side looks nice and brown too. It's delicious and insanely filling.



QUESTION:
I bought a sealed jar of organic blackstrap molasses yesterday, left it in a cupboard, and today I found the molasses had bubbled, expanded, and er...kind of exploded out of the jar. It smells and tastes sour. (the smell is stronger than the taste.) Does this mean it's fermented, spoilt, etc.?
(Quite a lame question, but I've been googling madly and looking through old posts, but can't find a description of how it's supposed to taste, other than "strong" or "distinctive"! Thanks :)

Feeding a Picky Omni 8-Year Old

I have a challenge.

My boyfriend's daughter is 8-years old, & apparently no one forces her to try foods like the adults did in my house. Thus, she has what I will politely call a discerning palate. That is, she doesn't like to try things & if she's decided she doesn't want to like something, she'll try it & then spit it out with a horrified look on her face even though I know darn well it tastes delicious. Other than that, she's an awesome kid, so I want to do something special for her.

Tonight, I want to make her something that will pass as "normal" to her eyes but has "weird" ingredients. Basically, I want to trick the kid into eating something vegan (or at least vegetarian -- I'm willing to bend for an omni 8-year old) & I want her to like it, dammit!

She doesn't often fall for "fake" things, such as soy dogs. She won't eat beans & some vegetables (though we sometimes make her eat these since that is just an 8-year old thing). Things I have seen her eat include plain pasta with butter, plain lettuce, & macaroni & cheese. I have pasta, avocado, tomato, tofu & swiss chard in the house, but I don't care what the meal is, or if I have to go buy all the ingredients, I would just like it to be healthy, filling, kid-friendly & tasty. I was thinking about going to get the Morningstar Farms "chicken" nuggets, but I'd much rather make something from scratch than resort to desperate measures.

Any ideas?

Parents, babysitters, etc. -- what do you feed the picky kids in your life?

Thanks in advance for whatever you can offer.