Authors Eat

Authors Eat…

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

This month the Culture and Cuisine Club features the bubbly and perennially fun Carol Wyer. Carol is an award-winning author of three books including the newly released “How Not to Murder Your Grumpy.” Carol currently resides in  the United Kingdom. Throughout her life she has traveled extensively, and she successfully adds a cultural richness to her writing. She spends a great deal of time in her adopted country, France, with her husband. Lucky lady!

In Carol’s own words, here is her recipe for a luscious Bouillabaisse.

I am a terrible cook. Honestly, I really am. Whatever I cook has to be simple. One of my greatest achievements was cooking a Bouillabaisse for a group of ten people, when I lived in Casablanca. It was my turn to host the monthly expat dinner party and rather foolishly I asked the guests what they would like to eat. One of them, a French girl, suggested Bouillabaisse because she missed France. The others thought this was a great idea and so I had to find out pretty quickly how to make it.

I asked the French girl how to cook it since she came from Marseille, considered the Mecca of Bouillabaisse, and knew what to do.  The morning of the dinner party, I drove down to the far side of Casablanca along with half the city to purchase the ingredients fresh off the boats as they pulled in. I rode back to the apartment at breakneck speed on my VeloSolex bike with clams and shellfish wheezing in plastic bags dangling from my bike handles, followed  the recipe and voila! That night my culinary dish was applauded and the French girl told me it was some of the best Bouillabaisse she had ever eaten. I have made the dish quite a few times since, adapting it to suit where I live and what I can purchase, but you really need to get very fresh fish to make it ultra tasty..

Hubby doesn’t like shellfish so I haven’t cooked it in a long while, but I still have that crumpled up piece of paper with the recipe scrawled on it just in case I ever get asked to cook it again.

In Marseille they use at least seven types of fish in a Bouillabaisse. If you can’t get extremely fresh fish – caught and cooked the same day – then use quick frozen fish. That’ll be fish frozen on the day it was caught. You can use almost any combination of fish you fancy and use as many different types of fish as you can. The bouillabaisse is often served with a spicy sauce. It is up to you if you want to make it or not. (I didn’t.)

Bouillabaisse Ingredients

  • 3 pounds of at least 3 different kinds of fish fillets, fresh or quick frozen (thaw first)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1-2 pounds of oysters, clams, or mussels
  • 1 cup cooked shrimps, crab, lobster meat, or rock lobster tails
  • 1 cup thinly sliced onions
  • 4 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 large tomato, chopped, or 1/2 cup canned tomatoes
  • 1 sweet red pepper, chopped
  • 4 stalks thinly sliced celery
  • 1 teaspoon of fennel seed
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme or 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2-3 whole cloves
  • Zest of half an orange
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered saffron
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup fish broth
  • 2 Tbps lemon juice
  • 2/3 cup white wine
  • Sliced French bread

Ingredients for Sauce Rouille (Not compulsory.)

  • 1 Tbsp hot fish stock
  • 2 cloves peeled garlic
  • 1 small red hot pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup soft white bread in small pieces
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

 

Put hot fish stock or clam broth into a blender. Add garlic and red hot pepper, salt and bread. Blend until very smooth. Add olive oil slowly and stop the blending as soon as the oil disappears. At serving time, serve the sauce Rouille in a little bowl next to the bouillabaisse. It is strong so don’t use much! Don’t put more than ½ teaspoon into your soup.

 

Bouillabaise

1 Heat 1/4 cup of the olive oil in a large saucepan. When it is hot, add onions and shallots. Sauté for a minute, then add crushed garlic, and sweet red pepper. Add tomato, celery, and fennel. Stir the vegetables into the oil with a wooden spoon until well coated. Then add another 1/4 cup of olive oil, thyme, bay leaf, cloves and the orange zest. Cook until the onion is soft and golden but not brown.

2 Cut fish fillets into 2-inch pieces. Add the pieces of fish and 2 cups of water to the vegetable mixture. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes. Add your shellfish, crabmeat, lobster tails.

3 Add saffron (it was ridiculously inexpensive in Morocco so I added a generous portion), salt, pepper. Add fish broth, lemon juice, and white wine. Bring to a simmer again and cook about 5 minutes longer.

4 At serving time place a thick slice of crusty French bread in each bowl. Spoon the bouillabaisse over the bread. If desired, serve with Sauce Rouille.

Serves 6 approximately.

Carol’s new novel, “How Not to Murder Your Grumpy” will be released on June 1, 2013.

Is your Grumpy Old Man getting under your feet? Is he wrestling with retirement? Are you wondering if you should bundle him up and entrust him to basket-weaving classes? Then this book could be the answer to your prayers. This light hearted guide is packed full of lively ideas, anecdotes and quips. Not only does it set out to provide laughs, but offers over 700 ideas and ways to keep a Grumpy Old Man occupied. From collecting airline sick bags to zorbing, you will be sure to find an absorbing pastime for your beloved curmudgeon. There are examples of those who have faced extraordinary challenges in older age, fascinating facts to interest a reluctant partner and innovative ideas drizzled, of course, with a large dollop of humor. Written tongue-in-cheek, this book succeeds in proving that getting older doesn’t mean the end of life or having fun. It provides amusing answers to the question, “How on Earth will my husband fill in his time in his retirement?” It offers suggestions on what might, or most certainly might not, amuse him. Ideal for trivia buffs, those approaching retirement, (or just at a loose end) and frustrated women who have an irritable male on their hands, this book will lighten any mood and may even prevent the odd murder.

You can find this book in both the UK and in the US in book shops and on Amazon. To find out more about Carol and her books please check out the following links:

Links to sites and purchase links for book.

Amazon US Author Page

Amazon UK Author Page 

 

Blog: http://facing50withhumour.com

 

 

 

 

 

Authors Eat…

Sunday, April 14th, 2013

Author Martin Crosbie embraces a beautiful day at the beach.

This month the Culture and Cuisine Club features popular Indie author Martin Crosbie. Martin is the author of two wonderful novels, “My Name is Hardly” and “My Temporary Life”, both bestsellers on Amazon, a collection of short stories “Lies I Never Told”, the business book “How I sold 30,000 Books on Amazon’s Kindle”, and a new Christmas romance to be released in time for holiday gift-giving. He was named as one of Amazon’s success stories of 2012.

Martin is also a much sought after speaker on radio programs and at writer’s conferences. As a self-published author, he is a shining example of what a great product and hard work can achieve. When not writing novels he maintains his own eloquent blog, and juggles writing for newspapers, on-line magazines and the industry leading writer’s blog, Indies Unlimited. Martin has shared a yummy recipe that you will want to try the next time you barbeque!

Martin’s Plagiarized BBQ Salmon Recipe

I stole this recipe but it’s okay, no copyrights were infringed in the cooking of this salmon.

The freckle-faced girl and I were doing our annual Mexico deal and we ventured away from the all-inclusive one afternoon. We’d eaten before we left but I guess the sea-air as we were walking along the beach got to us, and the smell, the smell was driving us crazy. We tracked the aroma to a small pokey-looking bar. There were a couple of gentleman barbecuing salmon on an open grill right on the beach, outside the bar. We couldn’t resist, and I’m glad we didn’t. We live on the west coast, so we’re not unfamiliar with barbecued fish but this was different from anything we’d ever tasted. As I was going up for my second helping I managed to extract the secret from one of the cooks. You spread mayonnaise or Miracle Whip on the salmon and barbecue it. Yep, it’s as simple as that. Here’s the very simple recipe we’ve come up with over the years:

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 salmon filets-any size
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise (or dilled mayonnaise)

Preparation:

1. Lightly spread mayo on both sides of the filets.

2. Heat the grill to medium-high heat.

3. Place the filets, flesh-side down, and grill for up to 3-5 minutes (depending on thickness).

4. Rotate each filet 1/2 turn (flesh-side down) and cook another 3-5 minutes (again, this depends on the thickness of the fish).

5. Turn filets over (skin-side down) and cook another 5 minutes

6. Serve with a dollop of mayonnaise and a sprig of dill.

 

My mouth is watering while I’m typing this. I know it sounds really simple but the mayo is oil-based, so it’s perfect for grilling fish, and this works almost as well on a frying pan as a barbecue.

The following links will help you to find Martin’s books and read some of his other publications. Enjoy!

His Amazon author page: here

An excellent post he wrote for Indies Unlimited: http://www.indiesunlimited.com/2013/04/02/the-blog-nobody-wanted-to-publish-except-indies-unlimited/

And his author blog: http://martincrosbie.com/blog/ 

Authors Eat …

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

Author Kathy Rowe cooking her Kentucky Fried Apples.

Author Kathy Rowe gets more done by 9:00 am than most people accomplish in a day. As a retired Master Sergeant in the U.S. Air Force, Kathy decided to focus her energy and determination toward crafting the multi-genre novels her readers love. Her efforts have produced novels of science fiction, suspense, and romance. And while much of the country drinks their first cup of coffee, she has already attended to her farm and her various pets. Kathy balances the joys of Kentucky farm life with her husband, and pours a life full of adventure onto the page.

Kathy also loves to cook. Farmers have access to the freshest produce and Kathy takes advantage of that. When I invited her to share a recipe with us she had to think for a minute as to what yummy recipe she would make. Kathy free-lances when she cook, like yours truly, but she measured all the ingredients for us to make sure it would turn out great. Thanks, Kathy!

What recipe has Kathy made for us? This month we are treated to her delicious Kentucky Fried Apples. What a treat! And speaking of treats, after you have perused the recipe below, please follow the attached link to Kathy’s Amazon author page and treat yourself to one of her entertaining books. Enjoy!

 

Yummy fried apples waiting for a little whipped cream.

Kathy’s Kentucky Fried Apples

From the author … No, I’m not trying to elbow in on Col. Sanders, I just happen to live in Kentucky and make quite a lot of fried apples. It’s a simple recipe and it can feed quite a few. Great as a dessert, or if you have leftovers, you can top Belgian waffles with it the next morning.

 

Ingredients:

3-4 good-sized Granny Smith apples. If you don’t like really tart stuff, substitute Golden Delicious or Red Delicious. Peel, core, and slice the apples. I cheat, I have a peeler, corer, slicer that does most of the work, then I take an apple slicer and cut them into little chunks.

 

¼ c Bourbon. You can pass if you’re not into the alcohol thing.

Let apples “steep” in bourbon for a few minutes in cold frying pan while you add:

 

2-3 Tbs butter- be generous!

The gadgets that make this recipe a breeze.

3 Tbs Sugar

1 Tbs cinnamon

¼ tsp nutmeg

 

Whipped cream for topping.

Fry apples over medium heat until tender. Serve up in bowls and liberally apply whipped cream. Enjoy! Makes approx 3-4 servings depending on apple size.

 

 

Amazon link:

http://amazon.com/author/krowe

Sherman the gourmet pig gets a treat.

 

 

Authors Eat …

Saturday, February 9th, 2013

Author K.S. Brooks cooks with Mr. Pish.

The number one request I receive from Culture and Cuisine Club followers is, “More recipes, please!” Your wish is my command. I thought it would be fun to feature an author each month and ask them to share one of their favorite recipes with us.

What better way to kick off this new feature than to introduce you to author K.S. Brooks and her best friend Mr. Pish. Kat is an award-winning author and photographer, a marksman, a nature lover and an entrepreneur. Kat is also at the center of the Independent Author movement, and a force to be reckoned with. As co-administrator at Indies Unlimited she and Stephen Hise have created a groundbreaking blog that is like a glass of water to a thirsty writer. Personally, although we have never met, I consider Kat to be a friend and a mentor. Her kindness to this newbie author will never be forgotten.

Kat has eliminated all gluten from her diet. She has shared with us her famous recipe for gluten-free chili. Why not pair a steaming bowl with an ice-cold beer? I recommend a Green’s bottle fermented Dark Ale. Green’s is a company that specializes in allergen free beer also suitable for Vegan or Vegetarian diets.

After you have checked out the recipe, please visit Kat’s Amazon author page and treat yourself or someone you love to one of her excellent books  http://www.amazon.com/K.-S.-Brooks/e/B002WKAOVG

 

 

Quick and Easy Gluten-Free Chili Recipe
This recipe is a delicate balance of sweet and spicy.  If you want spicier flavor, add chili powder, cayenne pepper, cumin and red pepper.  This chili is great for freezing in individual serving containers and then heating in the microwave for a nice hot lunch!
INGREDIENTS:
    1.5 pounds of 93% lean Ground Beef (sometimes I substitute 50% with ground turkey)
    1 medium yellow onion, chopped finely or nearly pureed in the food processor
    16 oz Cream of Tomato Soup (please see below for gluten-free)**
    28 oz Delmonte Chunky Diced Zesty Chili Style tomatoes or equivalent
    1 large can of kidney beans (2.5 pounds)
    Chopped fresh parsley as desired
    1+ tbsp Worcestershire sauce to taste (Lea & Perrins is gluten-free)
NOTE:  There are two ways to prepare this – standard stove top or crock pot.  I prefer crock pot because it is maintenance-free.  Instructions for both are provided.
STOVE TOP INSTRUCTIONS:
Brown beef in large pot, drain.  Add remaining ingredients, cook on medium low until it starts to steam and bubble, then simmer for one hour.  I usually let it cool, then put it in the fridge overnight to let the flavors mingle.  The next day I heat it up and serve.
CROCK POT INSTRUCTIONS:
Brown beef in large skillet, drain.  Add beef and remaining ingredients to crock pot, cook on low for up to 10 hours.
Garnish with shredded cheddar cheese and serve!
Serves 6-8 people.
**I can recommend the following gluten-free soups:
Pacific Natural Foods Organic Creamy Tomato (available in stores)
Heinz UK Cream of Tomato Soup (can be purchased online through the Gluten-Free Trading Company
Thanks for sharing, Kat!