Diva Tasting: ASIAN BEEF AND FRIED RICE ….

ASIAN BEEF AND FRIED RICE 
Ingredients
1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
3 Drops Sesame Oil, Or To Taste
1/2 Cup Diced Red Bell Pepper (Optional)
1/4 Cup Diced Onion
1 Finely Chopped Green Onion (white And Light Green Parts)
1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 Pound Cooked And Crumbled Ground Beef
1/3 Cup Diced Fresh Tomato
2 Tablespoons Fish Sauce
2 Teaspoons Soy Sauce
2 Cups Cooked Jasmine Rice
Salt And Ground Black Pepper To Taste
4 Wedges Lime (optional)
1 Egg, Beaten
Directions
  1. Warm vegetable oil and sesame oil in a wok or large skillet. Add bell pepper, onion, and green onion; cook for 2 minutes. Add ground beef, sprinkle garlic powder over mixture, and cook for 1 minute longer.
  2. Stir in diced tomato, fish sauce, and soy sauce; saute for 2 minutes. Add rice, mix until combined, and cook until heated through, 7 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and squeeze lime wedged over top.
  3. Pour beaten egg into a separate, small pan and let cook for 30 seconds. Lift the edges of the omelet so that any uncooked egg runs under the cooked edges and comes into contact with the hot skillet. Shake and tilt the skillet to move the uncooked egg. Repeat until the top is set, about 4 minutes.
  4. Divide rice into two portions and serve 1/2 of the omelet over each serving.

Diva Tasting : English Sausage Rolls…

English Sausage Rolls

Ingredients

1 (16 Ounce) Package Pork Sausage meat

1 (17.25 Ounce) Package Frozen Puff Pastry Sheets, Thawed

1/4 Cup Dijon Mustard

1 Beaten Egg

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

  2. Unfold the puff pastry sheets, and cut along the fold lines of each sheet to form 6 equal squares for a total of 12 squares. Brush each square with mustard. Divide sausage into 12 pieces, and roll into small logs. Place one log on each square. Roll dough around the sausage, and seal with a bit of beaten egg. Place rolls onto an ungreased baking sheet, and brush the tops with the rest of the egg.

  3. Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the rolls are puffed and golden. I usually watch after 10 minutes or so to make sure they don’t burn. These freeze (unbaked) very well.

Diva Chilling….Free Book Cites….

A repeat worth repeating…..
A Treat for the Avid Readers…. Gutenberg Press
For our readers…one of my favorite sites. I’ve even ordered books from Amazon that they have.
For me it is like being in one of the worlds biggest book stores. I can spend hours here.
https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en

Forgotten Books is a London-based book publisher specializing in the restoration of old books, both fiction and non-fiction.

Today we have1,225,886 books available to read online, download as ebooks, or purchase in print.
I can search all day and only wish I could read faster. I often look up old books mentioned on old detective shows and see if it is something I might like.
Also https://www.gutenberg.org/ Gutenberg Press I often print art books and other items of interest.

Diva Musing:

Almost Time Again…

It is not far from that time of year again. I was reading up and thought I’d pass along some early thoughts fro one of my sources. https://www.seedsavers.org/planning-a-garden
HOW TO PLANT A GARDEN-TIPS
What should I plant? How much should I plant? And where should I plant it? If you’re new to gardening—and even if you’re not—starting your garden can, at times, feel overwhelming. The good news? You don’t have to be a master gardener to create a garden plan that yields a healthy harvest. Here are a few tips to help you kick-start your home garden.
Give It Some Thought
As it does with most endeavors, it pays to think through your garden project before you order your seeds or transplants. Which vegetable varieties really pique your interest? How much land can you commit to a garden? (Be sure to allow adequate space between rows!) How much time do you have to devote to weeding, mulching, watering, and other garden maintenance? Which plant hardiness zone do you call home, and which plants thrive in that region over the course of the year? Answering these questions will help you develop a garden plan that suits your land and lifestyle.
Whether or not you are new to gardening, prioritize the crops that excite (or perhaps intrigue) you. And if you had a garden last year, make sure to rotate your crops this year, moving the location of each plant family to increase soil fertility and crop yield. Consider saving seeds from your garden, too. With just a few extra considerations, you can also plan to save seeds from your garden.
Choose a Good Location
Most vegetables grow best when they get at least six hours of sun a day, so be sure to plant your garden in a sunlight-rich location. If that sunny spot is close to a convenient water source for irrigation, that’s even better. Sowing your seeds or planting your transplants near a water source will make it easier to keep your soil at the optimal moisture level..
Start Small
Bigger doesn’t always mean better when it comes to basic garden planning. If you’re new to gardening, or if you have limited time to devote to your garden, commit to a plot size that won’t overwhelm you and concentrate on a selection of vegetables you like to eat that are also easy to grow. Radisheslettucespinach, and carrots are just a few of the crops that don’t take a lot of time or experience to produce a harvest.
Pay Attention to Your Soil
There’s no way to overemphasize the importance of good soil: your garden will grow best in nutrient-rich, well-drained, weeded, and loosened (non-compacted) soil. Before you plant each spring, take the time to enrich your soil with quality compost or other organic matter if you want to boost your soil’s fertility and your garden’s production. Mulch (like leaves, straw, and hay) also adds valuable nutrients to the soil and will cut down significantly on your need to weed.
Grow What You Love
What’s the point of growing vegetables you don’t like to eat? Let your palate dictate your choices when choosing your crops, but try to stay open to planting at least a couple new vegetables each year to keep your home garden a bit more exciting. The last thing you want is to have your garden feel like a chore rather than a source of inspiration and relaxation.
Keep Your Tools Simple
Truth is, you don’t need to invest a lot in tools for weeding and breaking up soil or otherwise preparing your soil for seeds or transplants. Multipurpose tools like this weeder and cultivator, used at Seed Savers Exchange’s Heritage Farm, can help you keep your garden weed-free.
Learn More About Seed Savers Exchange

Diva Tasting: Country Cornbread Lovin’…

Blueberry Cornbread

Ingredients

1 Cups All-Purpose Flour

3/4 Cup Cornmeal

1/2 Cup Brown Sugar

1/2 Teaspoon Salt

1 Tablespoon Baking Powder

1 Cup Half n Half

1/2 Cup Butter, Melted

1 Egg, Beaten

1 Cup Frozen Blueberries

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.

  2. Sift flour, cornmeal, brown sugar, salt and baking powder together into a large bowl. Dredge the blueberries in the sifted ingredients. In a small bowl, combine the milk, butter and egg. Stir the wet ingredients into the flour mixture just until moistened. Spoon batter into prepared muffin tins.

  3. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes. Let muffins sit for 10 minutes before removing from the pan.

Diva Musing: 11 Simple Cooking Tips…

With being shut in from our flood, I’ve been doing research in various topics.  Thought I’d share this one. 

11 Simple Cooking Tips You Need to Memorize
They’ll change your life.
This story originally appeared on Myrecipes.com by Rebecca Firkser.
From learning to not rinse your pasta after draining, to using a garbage bowl, you could start a spreadsheet of cooking tips and never run out of ideas. Some cooking tips are so simple that once you learn one you can’t imagine how you used to get through a recipe. That’s why I made this list. Memorize these tips and I guarantee your next meal will be a smashing success.
1. Read the whole recipe first
I’ll say this until the cows come home. If you’re cooking from a recipe, the best tip I can give you is to read through the whole thing all the way through before you start to cook. Not only will this help you gain a better understanding of what the final dish should look and taste like, you’ll also be able to ascertain which pots, pans, and tools you need, as well as catch important instructions like “marinate overnight.”
2. Set up mise en place
Mise en place is a French term that literally means “put in place.” It also refers to a way cooks in professional kitchens and restaurants set up their work stations—first by gathering all ingredients for a recipes, partially preparing them (like measuring out and chopping), and setting them all near each other. Setting up mise en place before cooking is another top tip for home cooks, as it seriously helps with organization. It’ll pretty much guarantee you never forget to add an ingredient and save you time from running back and forth from the pantry ten times.
3. Always sharpen knives
Don’t fear sharp knives. Can they give you a nasty cut? Absolutely. But dull knives are constantly proven to be more dangerous. They’re more prone to slip when cutting, which makes the chance of cutting yourself higher. If you commit to keeping knives sharp, you should also learn how to properly hold a chef’s knife, as well as how to hold the food you’re cutting.
4. Seasoning well and often
Major tip: season! your! food! Salt is the key to making food’s flavor jump around on your tongue. Most recipes will mention when you should add salt (and probably pepper as well), but it’s a good rule of thumb to add at least a pinch or two when you start cooking and again at the very end. Your palate will be the ultimate guide here, so taste often.
5. Get a salad spinner
Some people say a salad spinner is superfluous. I am not one of those people. OK, they’re bulky and sort of annoying to clean, but if you have room for a pot you have room for a salad spinner. Not only does a salad spinner make washing lettuces, herbs, and greens a snap, it dries them so much so more efficiently than towels ever could.
6. Roll citrus to get more juice out
Sometimes all a dish needs is a squeeze of lemon or lime to take it to the next level. To get the most juice out of your citrus, roll it on a cutting board before slicing in.
7. Use the right pans
When a recipe says to use a certain type of pan, use that pan. If you only own one nonstick pan, the best tip I can give you is to wait for a good sale at a kitchen store, then buy yourself a stainless steel pan and a cast iron skillet. It’s also smart to replace cheap nonstick pans every few years, as the coating can wear down.
8. Dry meats, legumes, and vegetables before cooking them
Hot tip: water and heat make steam, so when you try to cook something that’s still wet, it won’t bown properly. Meat should be patted with paper towels before you toss it into the pan, chickpeas can be drained in a colander and then dried on a towel before they go onto a sheet pan (this goes for vegetables too, minus the colander part).
9. Don’t crowd the pan
Whether you’re baking or pan frying, it’s important to avoid crowding the pan. Similarly to when vegetables or proteins are cooked while moist, when they’re crammed into a pan they’ll steam instead of brown, which is never good.
10. Clean as you go
Instead of piling every single dish and tool you used to make a meal into the sink to wash when you finish eating (and don’t forget to wipe down the counters and the stove), embrace the clean-as-you-go method. Instead of leaving vegetable trimmings and peels on the counter, toss them in one big garbage bowl for one easy dump and less mess. Have ten minutes to spare while the vegetables roast? Do ten minutes of washing and wiping.
11. Use the freezer for more than leftovers
You already know that you can stash leftovers in the freezer basically forever. But if you make room in your freezer, it can also house a number of items that will make your life easier. Frozen ginger will stay fresh for longer, as well as be easier to grate on a microplane. Tomato paste, stock, and sauces can be frozen into ice cubes and easily defrosted for recipes. You can also freeze cookie and pie dough, egg whites and yolks, and vegetable trimmings (for stock) and use them whenever you need. The freezer is also a prime spot to store a bag of items you intend to compost, as the cold kills the smell and decay.
This article originally appeared on Myrecipes.com
https://www.allrecipes.com/article/11-simple-cooking-tips-you-need-memorize/