The ginger flavor in commercial brands is usually mild and made with refined sugar or high-fructose corn syrup  *  Homemade soda is easier to make than most people think and you can store the syrup without the carbonated water for up to a week  *  To make the syrup combine 6 oz of fresh ginger (peeled and chopped)  and 8 cups of water in a saucepan and bring to a boil  *  Turn down the heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes or until the liquid has reduced by half  *  Remove from the heat and stir in 2 cups of light-colored raw honey  *  Cover fo twenty minutes and let the ginger and honey steep  *  Strain out the ginger and refrigerate the ginger syrup until well chilled  *  The syrup can be made up to 1 week in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator  *  In a large pitcher combine the ginger syrup with 8 cups of sparkling water and 4 Tbsp of freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice  *  Serve over ice when ready to party!  *  If you would like to turn this into a cocktail – I suggest adding some coconut flavored rum and a few berries



This is a fun recipe that requires some preparation  *  take three potatoes and boil them until they are soft  *  mash the potatoes and set them on the side in a medium bowl  *  in a pan with a small amount of olive oil – braze 6oz of chopped sirloin beef  *  add 1/2 chopped onion and 1/2 tsp of chopped chile (or use chile powder to taste)  *  add a small amount of bread crumbs to the meat filling and saute the mix until well cooked  *  set it aside in a small bowl so that the potato pockets can be formed  *  sprinkle a small amount of flour on a work board or the counter top  *  roll the mashed potato into four balls and flatten each one with a roller or by hand  *  using a Tbsp place the prepared meat mixture onto each potato disk  *  with fingers work the potato disk into a pocket that completely surrounds the meat mixture  *  (some recipes suggest that a hard-boiled egg be quartered and added to each pocket before enclosing them)  *  Place the meat and potato pockets into the air fryer pan  *  set temperature to 360 degrees F and the timer for eight minutes  *  This should be enough to give bread like consistency to the potato cover  *  If a firmer fried potato is desired – return the pockets to the air fryer for another 4 or 5 minutes  *  let them cool and serve or package them to be carried and eaten later at an event or on a road trip!

Power Air Fryer Review

Labor Day weekend I woke up a little groggy and when I turned on the cable TV Eric Theiss was on pitching his beloved Air Fryer. For those of you who are not familiar with Air Fryers – oil is eliminated from the cooking process and it is replaced with hot air that circulates and surrounds the food – cooking it to crisp perfection. They have been around for a while and allows you to air fry or air broil or air bake a huge variety of foods. The Power Air Fryer XL has a digital control panel including a Power Button, Timer Control Buttons, Temperature Control Buttons and Preset Buttons. If you would like a pile of french fries to accompany a piece of fish, just peel a potato and cut it into square lengths (although the prepared packaged french fries have much less water and fry great), place them in the fry basket, press the preset french fry button and the potatoes will cook for 18 minutes at 400F. The taste and crunch of freshly air fried potatoes is the best. If you want to add the fish – put some batter on it and press the preset button for Fish – the Air Fryer will run for 10 minutes at 350F to create a delicious crispy battered air fried piece of fish.

The unit uses a standard polarized plug and uses a 120v/60hz outlet. It draws 1500 watts to generate 180 to 400 F temperatures. It comes with a large 3.4 quart fry basket with non stick coating. The dimensions for the unit are 12.7″w x 14.4″h x 12.7″d

Here’s how easy it is to roast a turkey  *  season the turkey with a rub of 1 tsp garlic, 1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp rosemary 1/2 tsp thyme and 2 Tbsp olive oil  *  place the turkey breast side down in the fry basket  *  press the M button  *  and scroll to the turkey/chicken icon  *  press the power button and adjust the cooking time to 20 minutes at 360 degrees F  *  when the time runs out carefully turn the turkey over and press the M button  * scroll to the turkey/chicken icon  *  press the power button and adjust the cooking time to 20 minutes at 360 degrees F  *  test the turkey with a thermometer for proper cooking (165 degrees F)  *  let it rest for about 20 minutes before serving  *  By the way the frying basket is big enough to fit two small turkey breasts or a turkey and chicken breast at the same time  *   I am very happy with the Power Air Fryer and find myself using it at least once a day – usually twice daily!

ONE pizza dough

this recipe will make a pretty large size pizza – but if you think you will need two pizzas – just double everything  *  take two cups of flour and add 1/8 tsp active dry yeast and 1 1/8 tsp salt  *  stir the dry mix together and slowly drizzle in 4/5 cup of water  *  Do not overwork the dough – 3 minutes should be plenty of time to create a shaggy ball of dough  *  Cover dough with plastic wrap and leave in at a cool room temperature  *  after 12 to 18 hours the dough should be double in size  *  Once ready it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days – until you are ready to bake  *  about one hour before you are ready to bake  – turn the dough out onto a lightly flowered surface  *  stretch and pat the dough in preparation to roll it  *  using a rolling-pin thin out the dough ball to a circle with about 3/8 inch width  *  place the pizza dough on a sheet and add some toppings: such as marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese (perhaps some thin sliced onion and chopped olives too)  *  place in a 375F pre-heated oven and let it bake  *  maybe 15 to 20 minutes  *  visually check the pizza pie so it is baked to your preference  *  remove from oven and let it cool before it is sliced and served  *  remember the thinner the crust the better the pie!

Summer Vegetable Stew

As the temperatures go up – here’s a vegetable recipe that can be served to help cool you off  *  resembles a ratafia in vegetable selection – but with a plentiful 1/2 cup of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese added – this stew becomes a luxurious medley of summer bounty  * Here is a recipe for two and as the vegetables pile on it seems like the recipe is for more people, but we really want some leftovers to serve cold or slightly warmed on an extra hot day  *  Get out a cup to measure one cup portions  *  Let’s dice one cup of eggplant, one cup of diced tomatoes, one cup of diced zucchini and place in a medium bowl on the side  *  Saute 1/2 cup of diced onions, 1/2 cup of celery and two chopped garlic cloves in two Tbsp olive oil  *  Add the diced eggplant-zuccini-tomatoes to the pan along with 1/2 cup of corn and 2/3 cup of cold water  *  let it cook for 12 minutes with a cover over the pan  *  Add the 1/2 cup of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese  *  Let it simmer for another 8 minutes with the cover still on the pan  * A total cook time of 20 minutes should soften and blend everything enough for a first serving  *  Can be served with bread or a side of grits  *  Guaranteed to bring joy to the tasters!

Cranberry Pecan Jell

I spent yesterday creating a new twist to an old favorite by eliminating a number of ingredients  *  It was mixed, molded and set with gelatin when left in the refrigerator to firm  *  The flavor will remind you of holidays and special gatherings  *  It can also bring a cool moment to extra hot summer days  *  After a number of trials – this is the recipe that worked for me  *  Mix together in a medium size bowl 1/2 cup of cranberry jelly, 1/2 cup mayo, 1/4 cup red wine vinegar and 10 to 16 oz of flaked canned chicken breast  *  Add a cup of chopped pecan nuts to the mix  *   Bring one cup of water to a boil and dissolve four packets of plain geletin powder in the water  *  Pour and even the cranberry mayo chicken wine vinegar pecan mix into an oiled mold – make sure the mold is not to deep ( 1 inch or less in-depth to start)  *  perhaps a large casserole dish will help  *  Pour the dissolved gelatin over the cranberry pecan mix  *  cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate  *  it should be ready to serve in the most  – two hours  * sides of celery and crackers make it a nice lunch dish!

Barbecue Rhubarb

If you can – a double batch of rhubarb can be used to make this barbecue sauce –  it can be frozen for two or three months and used when desired  *  rhubarb barbecue sauce is delicious on chicken, beef, pork, fish or as a marinate for vegetables  *  Let’s begin with 2 to 4 cups of thin sliced rhubarb placed on the side * a barbecue mix of 1/4 cup ketchup mixed with 1/4 cup brown sugar -plus 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce, 1 Tbsp cider vinegar with salt and pepper to taste are also placed on the side  *  Heat 1 Tbsp of olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat  * add 1 small chopped onion and 2 cloves of minced garlic  *  add the thinly sliced rhubarb and simmer until the onion and rhubarb are soft  *  add the mix of ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce and vinegar barbecue sauce to the onion garlic and simmered rhubarb  *  let it meld under heat for 10 minutes  *  remove and let it cool so that it can be covered and refrigerated  for up to three days  *  Or this tangy, healthy barbecue sauce can be frozen for two to three months


Let’s hear it for dandelion greens!  *  Pure dandelion salad can be made with as little as 6 ounces of trimmed, washed and dried, dandelion greens  *  three 8 – minute hard boiled eggs – both peeled, quartered and lightly seasoned are good garnish  *  six medium beets – cooked, peeled and seasoned also work as garnish  *  Beets can be made on the stove top or baked for 1 hour and 15 minutes at 350 degrees ( until tender when pierced with the tip of a pairing knife)  *  Cut the beets into 3/4 inch wedges and season with salt and pepper  *  Dress the beets with 2 Tbsp of vinaigrette dressing and toss well to coat  *  A vinaigrette season can be mixed in a small bowl by whisking 2 garlic cloves, 2 tsp grated ginger, 2 Tbsp lime juice, 1 Tbsp sherry vinegar, and 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard  *  season with salt and ground black pepper and whisk in 4 Tbsp of extra virgin olive oil  *  Place dandelion greens in a large shallow bowl  *  Season lightly with salt and pepper and toss gently to coat  *  Add up to 3 Tbsp of vinaigrette and toss to coat leaves well  *  Divide the dressed leaves among 6 plates  *  Garnish each plate with beets and hard boiled eggs  *  Enjoy this celebrated spring favorite

Cay West Kim Chi

Kim Chi has been part of my diet for a number of years  *  However, it must be admitted that it has never been very Korean  *  I use to boil some green cabbage  – add some red pepper and garlic salt and return it to the refrigerator in a sealed container to let it meld  *  The taste was good but hardly spectacular in a Korean sense  *  It was missing something and after some reading in the Korean Table cookbook – I realized that fermentation was not taking place  *  most Kim Chi recipes add fermented products, such as oyster sauce or shrimp sauce and I thought they provided fermentation  *  That was wrong – so on further investigation – it was found that rice was needed  *  cooked white rice  *  Personally, I have never seen pieces of rice in the jars of Kim Chi for sale in stores  *  probably the rice was chopped up when processing the Kim Chi red paste  *  to make 6 Tbsp of red sauce or paste please process the following  *  4 or 5 garlic cloves, 1/2 tsp minced ginger, 1 Tbsp salt, 3 dices green onions, 2 Tbsp sugar, 2 Tbsp water, 2 Tbsp oyster sauce, 2 Tbsp shrimp cocktail sauce and as much red chili pepper as you can handle (can you handle the 1/4 cup of red chile pepper that the recipe calls for?)  *  and remember 2 Tbsp of cooked white rice  *  Some recipes call for 2 Tbsp of anchovy paste or fish sauce  *  both are anchovy products and can be used instead of oyster sauce and shrimp sauce if desired  *  Once the Kim Chi red paste sauce is prepared – place it to the side in a medium size mixing bowl  *  The chosen type of cabbage for this recipe is green cabbage as opposed to savoy or napa  *  I find it the most plentiful where I live  *  Bring five cups of water and 1/2 cup salt to a boil  *  Let the brine cool for five minutes and pour it over a head of cored and chopped (into about 1″ pieces) cabbage  *  Cover the cabbage with the very hot brine and let it sit for ten minutes  *   Take the cabbage and rinse it with cold water  *  Now is the time to mix the Kim Chi Red paste and brine cooked cabbage together  *  Once mixed –  place it in a covered container to meld at room temperature for twenty four hours  *  It is now ready to be served

No-Bake Energy Balls

Here is a great energy ball that’s made by hand forming processed dried fruits and nuts  *  No need for baking  *  These bite size small balls are hand shaped and covered with unsweetened coconut while still sticky  *  In a food processor pulse 2 cups of pitted dates with 1 cup of raw cashews, 1/2 cup of raw sunflower seeds, 1/4 cup of sweetened desiccated coconut, 1/4 cup cocoa powder, 2 Tbsp honey, 1 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp cayenne until it is smooth and like dough  *  To make each bite – roll up 2 Tbsp of dough into a ball and then roll the small ball in additional unsweetened coconut  *  Should make about 2 dozen balls  *  They can give a natural energy boost without caffeine or junk  *  They can be made without having to turn on the oven  *  they are whole food based bites that can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 week  *  A good way to avoid the lab made sweeteners, preservatives and strange protein isolates found in some processed bars  *  This is a good recipe for any left over pitted or dried dates