Cane syrup is a traditional American sweetener made by the simple concentration of cane juice through long cooking in open kettles. The result is a dark, “caramel–flavored, burnt gold–colored syrup”, “deep and slightly sulfurous” with a “lightly bitter backlash”. It is sweeter than molasses because no refined sugar is removed from the product.
Steen’s syrup has been made since 1910 in Abbeville, Louisiana, by C. S. Steen’s Syrup Mill, Inc. Its packaging is marked by a bright yellow label. Steen’s has been called a “Southern icon” and essential for “sweet Southern dishes”. While Steen’s is the best known remaining producer of unrefined cane syrup, a few other manufacturers can be found elsewhere in the South.
Traditional cane syrup has been called “one of the basic flavors of southern Louisiana”; the syrup, and Steen’s manufacturing process, are described by Slow Food USA in their Ark of Taste as an endangered slow food product.
Tip: To measure honey and syrups easily, use a metal spoon that has been dipped in hot water. Honey and syrups will not stick to a heated spoon.
A smooth, soft cheese made with cow’s milk and real jalapeño peppers. It is a well balanced cheese with an extra zesty pepper flavor and a creamy mouth feel. It can be shredded, melted or pulled in strings for using in spicy dishes such as enchiladas, rellenos, tacos, nachos, scrambled eggs, spicy fundido with Loganiza.
Butternut squash, also known in Australia and New Zealand as butternut pumpkin, and “Batana” in Sri Lanka is a type of winter squash. It has a sweet, nutty taste similar to that of a pumpkin. It has yellow skin and orange fleshy pulp. When ripe, it turns increasingly deep orange, and becomes sweeter and richer. It grows on a vine. The most popular variety, the Waltham Butternut, originated in Waltham, Massachusetts, where it was developed at the Waltham Experiment Station by Robert E. Young. Dorothy Leggett claims that the Waltham Butternut squash was developed by her late husband, Charles Leggett, in Stow, Massachusetts, and then subsequently introduced by him to the researchers at the Waltham Field Station.
Although a fruit, butternut squash is used as a vegetable that can be roasted, toasted, puréed for soups, or mashed and used in casseroles, breads, and muffins.
In Australia it is regarded as a pumpkin, and is used interchangeably with other types of pumpkin.
Butternut squash finds common use in South Africa. It is often prepared as soup or grilled whole. Grilled butternut is typically seasoned with spices such as nutmeg and cinnamon, or stuffed (e.g. spinach and feta before wrapped in foil and then grilled). The grilled butternut is often served as a side dish to braais (barbecues) and the soup as a starter dish.
It is a good source of fiber, vitamin C, manganese, magnesium, and potassium. It is also an excellent source of vitamin A and vitamin E.
The fruit is prepared by removing the skin, stalk, and seeds, which are not usually eaten or cooked. However, the seeds are edible, either raw or roasted, and the skin is also edible and softens when roasted. One of the most common ways to prepare butternut squash is roasting. To do this, the squash is cut in half lengthwise, lightly brushed with cooking oil, and placed cut side down on a baking sheet. It is then baked for 45 minutes or until it is softened. Once roasted, it can be eaten in a variety of ways as outlined above.
Bündnerfleisch, also known as Bindenfleisch or Viande des Grisons, is an air-dried meat that is produced in the canton of Graubünden, Switzerland.
The main ingredient is beef, taken from the animal’s upper thigh or shoulder, the fat and the sinews being removed. Before drying, the meat is treated with white wine and seasonings such as salt, onion and assorted herbs. The initial curing process, lasting 3 – 5 weeks, takes place in sealed containers stored at a temperature close to freezing point. The meat is regularly rearranged during this stage, in order to ensure that the salt and seasonings will be evenly distributed and absorbed. During a second drying phase the meat is then hung in free-flowing air at a temperature of between 9 and 14 °C. It is also periodically pressed in order to separate out residual moisture: from this pressing Bündnerfleisch acquires its characteristic rectangular shape. Traditionally Bündnerfleisch was not a smoked meat.
The extent of water loss during the salting and drying processes, whereby the product loses approximately half of its initial weight, is sufficient to confer excellent keeping qualities and a high nutritional value, without the need for any additional preservatives.
Bündnerfleisch is served with bread, sliced very thinly. It is often part of the traditional dish raclette, served to accompany the cheese of the same name alongside ham and vegetables. It can also be served in soup, cut into strips or little cubes.
Bucatini, also known as perciatelli, is a thick spaghetti-like pasta with a hole running through the center. The name comes from Italian: buco, meaning “hole”, while bucato or its Neapolitan variant perciato mean “pierced”.
Bucatini is common throughout Lazio, particularly Rome. It is a tubed pasta made of hard durum wheat flour and water. Its length is 25–30 cm (10–12 in) with a 3 mm (1/8 inch) diameter. The average cooking time is nine minutes.
In Italian cuisine, it is served with buttery sauces, pancetta or guanciale, vegetables, cheese, eggs, and anchovies or sardines.
Similarly, ziti are long hollow rods which are also smooth in texture and have square-cut edges; “cut ziti” are ziti cut into shorter tubes. There is also zitoni, which is a wider version of ziti.
>Brussels sprouts are members of the Brassica family and therefore kin to broccoli and cabbage. They resemble miniature cabbages, with diameters of about 1 inch. They grow in bunches of 20 to 40 on the stem of a plant that grows as high as three feet tall. Brussels sprouts are typically sage green in color, although some varieties feature a red hue. They are oftentimes sold separately but can sometimes be found in stores still attached to the stem. Perfectly cooked Brussels sprouts have a crisp, dense texture and a slightly sweet, bright, and “green” taste.
It’s no surprise that Brussels sprouts look like perfect miniature versions of cabbage since they are closely related, both belong to the Brassica family of vegetables. Brussels sprouts are available year round; however, they are at their best from autumn through early spring when they are at the peak of their growing season.
While the origins of Brussels sprouts are unknown, the first mention of them can be traced to the late 16th century. They are thought to be native to Belgium, specifically to a region near its capital, Brussels, after which they are named. They remained a local crop in this area until their use spread across Europe during World War I. Brussels sprouts are now cultivated throughout Europe and the United States. In the U.S., almost all Brussels sprouts are grown in California.
Good quality Brussels sprouts are firm, compact, and vivid green. They should be free of yellowed or wilted leaves and should not be puffy or soft in texture. Avoid those that have perforations in their leaves as this may indicate that they have aphids residing within. If Brussels sprouts are sold individually, choose those of equal size to ensure that they will cook evenly. Brussels sprouts are available year round, but their peak growing period is from autumn until early spring.
Keep unwashed and untrimmed Brussels sprouts in the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator. Stored in a plastic bag, they can be kept for 10 days. If you want to freeze Brussels sprouts, steam them first for between three to five minutes. They will keep in the freezer for up to one year.
Before washing Brussels sprouts, remove stems and any yellow or discolored leaves. Wash them well under running water to remove any insects that may reside in the inner leaves.
Brussles sprouts cook quickly and taste the best when they are cut into small pieces.
Brussels sprouts are rich in many valuable nutrients. They are an excellent source of vitamin C and vitamin K. They are a very good source of numerous nutrients including folate, manganese, vitamin B6, dietary fiber, choline, copper, vitamin B1, potassium, phosphorus, and omega-3 fatty acids. They are also a good source of iron, vitamin B2, protein, magnesium, pantothenic acid, vitamin A, niacin, calcium, and zinc. In addition to these nutrients, Brussels sprouts contain numerous disease-fighting phytochemicals including sulforaphane, indoles, glucosinolates, isothiocynates, coumarins, dithiolthiones, and phenols.
In 1867, William G. Bell, a Boston inventor and cook, created Bell’s Seasoning. A unique combination of rosemary, oregano, sage, ginger, and marjoram – today’s blend is unchanged from the original recipe.
For generation after generation, Bell’s Seasoning has been the essential ingredient with Holiday turkey, stuffing, and more.
Beef consommé is an intensely flavorful, full-bodied soup made from brown beef stock and seasonings. Unlike broth, which is usually used as an ingredient in another dish, consommé is meant to be served as is. The word “consommé,” in fact, means “completed.”
Three qualities separate consommé from stocks and broth: it is never cloudy but has been clarified to glass-like perfection, its flavors are deeply concentrated, and it has a full-bodied smoothness stock-based soups lack. A well-made beef consommé tastes meatier than the beef it was made from, and is both comforting and satisfying.
Consommé can be made from almost any animal, including veal, chicken, duck, and fish.
Béchamel sauce, also known as white sauce, is made from a roux (butter and flour) and milk. It is one of the mother sauces of French cuisine. It is used as the base for other sauces (such as Mornay sauce, which is Béchamel with cheese).
Béchamel is traditionally made by melting a quantity of butter, and adding an equal part of flour to make a roux, which is cooked under gentle heat while stirring with a whisk. As it is a white sauce, care must be taken not to brown the roux. Then heated milk is gradually whisked in, and the sauce is cooked until thickened and smooth. The proportion of roux and milk determines the thickness of the sauce, typically one to three tablespoons each of flour and butter per cup of milk.
One tablespoon each of butter and flour per cup of milk makes a thin, easily pourable sauce. Two tablespoons of each makes a medium thick sauce. Three tablespoons of each makes an extra thick sauce, such as used to fill croquettes or as a soufflé base. Salt and white pepper are added and it is customary in Italy to add a pinch of nutmeg. Optionally a whole or cut onion, studded with one or more whole cloves, and a bay leaf may be simmered with the milk and then strained before adding to the roux.