Category Archives: Recipes/Food

Bubble and Squeak

Bubble and Squeak

Originating in Ireland, bubble and squeak migrated into England as a common breakfast meal somewhere before the middle of the eighteenth century. As a dish with the sole purpose to not waste leftover food from dinner the night before, it was essentially a mish-mash of vegetables shredded or chopped small and combined with slivers of… CONTINUE READING…

Scotch Eggs

Scotch Eggs

Last Friday I published a blog on Picnic History. One of the essential features of a good picnic was food that could withstand packing and travel, and that was easy to pick up and eat. This instantly brought to mind a blog I wrote a very long time ago for Austen Authors on strange foods,… CONTINUE READING…

Here we come a-wassailing!

Here we come a-wassailing!

The general opinion is that wassailing is all about the apples and/or an ancient pagan ritual. Neither is true, but the origins are interesting nevertheless. Earliest traces are to a simple Anglo-Saxon/Old Norse toast — Waes Hael! — which translates to “be hale!” To this wish for good health, a fellow drinker would respond, Drinc Hael! As may… CONTINUE READING…

Fowl for Christmas Dinner, in History and Today

Fowl for Christmas Dinner, in History and Today

Food historians tell us the practice of serving large, stuffed fowl for Christmas is like many other Christian holiday food traditions in that the idea was borrowed from earlier cultural traditions. Peacocks, swans, geese, duck, pheasant, guinea fowl, and turkeys have topped the list for centuries. The larger the bird, the more festive the presence.… CONTINUE READING…

More Than One Way to Cook a Turkey

More Than One Way to Cook a Turkey

In the United States, turkey as a holiday dinner meat is associated most strongly with Thanksgiving. However, Christmas runs a close second. In my family tradition, glazed ham with fresh cloves has forever been our dinner choice, turkey the special treat for Thanksgiving. Whether choosing turkey for either or both important feasting holidays, the bird… CONTINUE READING…

Mr. Darcy’s Birthday Menu in Darcy & Elizabeth: Hope of the Future

Mr. Darcy’s Birthday Menu in Darcy & Elizabeth: Hope of the Future

For Celebration Day #4 I am highlighting a celebration written in Darcy & Elizabeth: Hope of the Future: Mr. Darcy’s Birthday Party! One of the scenes during the engagement period which I had previously written into the novels of the Darcy Saga was the twenty-ninth birthday of Mr. Darcy. Written over ten years ago, “Happy… CONTINUE READING…

Hot Chocolate Garnishes

Hot Chocolate Garnishes

Nothing wrong with a dollop of whipped cream or mini-marshmallows floating atop a steaming mug of hot chocolate. But for something a bit more exciting or unique, here are a few ideas to WOW your holiday guests and thrill your kiddies. When necessary, recipes are included or linked to, although in most cases the garnish… CONTINUE READING…

Rainbows of Hot Chocolate

Rainbows of Hot Chocolate

The word “chocolate” automatically conjures the image of bars/chunks in ranging shades of brown. Then we remember there is white chocolate and food coloring. From there the possibilities are almost endless! With rainbow colors come a rainbow of flavors too.                       CONTINUE READING…

Hot Chocolate with “Spice”

Hot Chocolate with “Spice”

Want your hot chocolate with a bit of kick to it? There are several ways to bring zing to an old standard. Variations for the over 21 crowd are myriad, essentially hot chocolate or hot cocoa cooked the desired way and then “spiked” with one’s preferred alcohol. Possibilities include: bourbon, Kahlua, rum, whiskey, brandy, vodka,… CONTINUE READING…

French Hot Chocolate

French Hot Chocolate

French Hot Chocolate – called le Chocolat Chaud – is distinguished from traditional hot chocolate in that it is much richer and thicker, and less sweet. True French hot chocolate is always made from brick chocolate, the higher the cacao percentage the better, and never from cocoa powder. The texture is velvety smooth, a true “death by… CONTINUE READING…

Hot Chocolate: A History

Hot Chocolate: A History

We are entering the cold weather where cuddling up by the fire with a steaming mug of something warm, such as hot chocolate, is an evening favorite. So here is a short history of this delicious beverage. Between 3,000 and 4,000 years ago, cacao plants were first cultivated in Mesoamerica by the Olmec, living in… CONTINUE READING…