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I Didn’t Know That About That!

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By Gini Rainey

I always find it interesting how different people have different names for the same things.  I think this is part of what makes social interaction with new people such an adventure.  From friends to friends, generation to generations, and even family to family, we seem to all come up with variations on themes.  For instance, the many different names given to infant pacifiers comes to mind: passie, binky, plug, dummy, bo-bo, nookie, and more.  Our babies called them binkies (Binky being a name-brand), but none of our friends’ babies did.  I almost hugged someone recently when they referred to their baby’s pacifier as a binky.  It was great to find someone who spoke the “same” language – at least as far as pacifiers are concerned!

So with that thought in mind, it’s easy to imagine all of the variations on a theme different dishes might be called.  Then, if you want to really make yourself crazy, try to figure out why they are called that!  One of the more interesting names for a casserole my mom would make is “Growlie.”  A simple pasta/tomato casserole made with vermicelli, canned diced tomatoes, pinto beans, onions, and more, my kids labeled it Growlie –you know, because when you smell it cooking your tummy starts growling.  Easy enough to understand where that name came from, right?

For some of the more well-known recipes out there, I’m sure there have been times when someone, somewhere has wondered where the heck its name came from.  We all know about sandwiches theoretically being named after John Montagu, the 4th Earl of Sandwich who asked his valet to bring him meat tucked between two slices of bread to keep his pinkies clean while playing a game of cards.  But for some of those other oddly named dishes, James Winter has written a very interesting book “Who Put the Beef in Wellington?” that not only gives the history behind a lot of the dishes, but also the recipes.  Published in 2013 by Kyle Books, this book is a virtual compendium of famous dishes and their history.  It’s filled with lots of historical information along with great, color photos of the food.

Starting with the title dish, although there is no actual recorded history of the development of this dish, it is assumed that it refers to the man who crushed Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo.  Requiring military precision to be executed successfully, Beef Wellington is one of the most stunning pieces of British cuisine in existence.  Waldorf Salad, a simple mixture of mayonnaise, celery, walnuts, and apples on a bed of lettuce was created by Oscar Tshirky, the maître d’ at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in NYC, and incorporated a few of his favorite things, thus creating that hotel’s signature dish on the occasion of its opening.  Sole Veronique is a dish that was created accidentally by Auguste Escoffier, who began cooking at the age of 13 at his uncle’s restaurant in Nice.  A veritable sorcerer in the kitchen, he later moved to London’s Carlton Hotel, created this dish and named it after London’s new big show in 1903, Gilbert and Sullivan’s Veronique, cashing in on theater crowd that would come in to dine after the show.  Of course, as you can imagine, the light and airy meringue/fruit dish Pavlova was named after the lovely ballerina Anna Pavlova.  Pizza Margherita, the thin crusted disk of bread topped with tomato sauce, cheese, basil, and various other ingredients was named after Queen Margherita of Italy.

I love this story about the creation of Caesar Salad.  Back in the 1920s, during Prohibition, There was a whole lot of boot-legging going on in our country, but one of the more law-abiding citizens, Caesar Cardini who, from his restaurant in San Diego, California, looked enviously down the road to Mexico, where there was definitely a different attitude towards drinking.  So Caesar and his brother Alex decided to open their second Caesar’s Italian restaurant just across the border in Tijuana.  It wasn’t long before the stars of stage and screen were rushing down to Caesar’s to eat and drink.  The story goes that on July 4, 1925, there were so many of them there that, although there was plenty of liquor, food supplies were running short, leaving not much more than lettuce in the fridge.  So, Caesar came up with the idea of preparing a salad at the tables and with a flourish began making and serving the house “Specialty Salad.”

You can impress your guests by preparing this salad from scratch at your next dinner party.  Start by pouring 6 tablespoons of olive oil into a saucepan and add 1 large garlic clove, peeled.  Don’t fry the garlic, rather simmer it to bring it to room temperature and bring the oil to body temperature, then set aside.  Now put 1 large egg into a saucepan of cold water and bring to a boil.  Boil for 1 minute, then run under cold water.  Crack the egg into a food processor; add the garlic, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce.  Process well and add freshly ground pepper to taste.  Tear up 1 washed and well drained Romaine lettuce into a bowl, pour the dressing over the lettuce and add croutons and 1 tablespoon coarsely grated fresh Parmesan cheese and serve.  Yummmm!

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Books

Book Lovers Events: Hot Summer Signings & More

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From book signings to Meet & Greet’s, Tyler  offers every Book Lover a lot of fun things to do. Check out these events:

For more events, check out EGuideMagazine.com ‘s entire

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Books

Reading the Kids Back to School

stanleys bbq tyler tx eguide magazine

By Gini Rainey

“Mischief and Mayhem: Part I of the Faerlands Chronicles”

by S. D. Nicholson

I think you know me by now to know that magical kingdoms and fantasy are not the usual genre of reading that I reach for.  So, when I was approached by the author’s publicist to read and review this book, I wasn’t even aware it fell into this area.  With that being said, I must admit that I have thoroughly enjoyed and been intrigued by the characters and tiny world that Mr. Nicholson has created in his first book.  Without a doubt, the main character, the tiny fae Ophelia, is every bit a heroine as are her six-foot tall counterparts.

I have no doubt in my mind that while the faes and faers of Nicholson’s book are In a struggle to preserve and maintain peace in their homeland, it is also analogous to the struggles we humans face on a daily basis while trying to attain a peaceful coexistence with the other inhabitants of this big blue marble.

The not so terribly hidden messages in Nicholson’s book came through loud and clear to me:  that if we spend quiet time by ourselves, we will be able to find and explore fully what our capabilities are, and additionally, fight for what we hold near and dear.  This is an outstanding read.  Not only will it capture your imagination, but it will also have you start thinking about what undeveloped talents and truths you might not have discovered about yourself.

I read the teaser at the end of the book and am anxious to read Part 2 of the Faerlands Chronicles!

5 of 5 – Copyright 2019 – Köhler Books

“Big Little Lies”

by Liane Moriarty

This book from which the HBO series starring Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman was adapted, is a pretty slow starter.  Working backwards from an event, the first third of this book was busy building strong characters, exposing bullies (adult-sized and pint-sized), failed and new relationships, and various points of view about the culmination of events.  As usual, Ms. Moriarty isn’t afraid to cooly broach hot topics: blended families, sexual assault, violence against women and children, all carefully tempered with unexpected humor and human emotions.

Set in a rather cliquish, upper-end Australian beach community, the human interests begin to develop by retrospect following a murder at the exclusive private school.  Liane develops some pretty interesting characters using her very successful skills and creating some of the most flawed people this side of Sidney.

Definitely worth the read for anyone with school-aged children as it brings together three moms whose only commonality is their kindergarten-aged children. While pointing out each of the character’s flaws, Moriarty gently has a couple of fingers pointing at the helicopter-parenting skills of modern-day moms that perhaps are creating our current crop of young adults who are clueless.

Without a doubt, this is yet another in a long stream of controversial topics that Liane Moriarty isn’t afraid of writing about and the plot twist at the end will keep you reading till the final page.

5 of 5 – Copyright 2014 – Berkley

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Books

A Good Pounding!

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By Gini Rainey

Good grief, that’s exactly what I deserve.  I have been so over-whelmed with life in the past few months – okay, this year – that I have neglected to do what I love doing – writing!  So, apparently it took an email to our editor/publisher to get me off high center.  She forwarded this email to me on June 24th and it comes from an editor named Jess Miller who just happens to be associated with jenreviews.com.  Jen Reviews is the authority on everything food, fitness and home and has been featured in some mind-blowing (my mind, anyway!) publications such as Forbes, Fast Company, The Guardian, The Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan, Greatist, Reader’s Digest, MindBodyGreen, Livestrong, Bustle, Lifehacker, Wikihow, and oh my goodness, many many more. 

Jess email says “I was doing research on pound cake recipes and just finished reading your wonderful blog post: https://eguidemagazine.com/janies-cakes-finally-oprah-realizes-something-weve-all-known-for-years/ In that article, I noticed that you cited a solid post that I’ve read in the past: https://janiescakes.com/  We just published a delicious cranberry pound cake with orange glaze recipe complete with step-by-step pictures and detailed instructions. It is completely free and you can find it here: https://www.jenreviews.com/cranberry-pound-cake-recipe/.  If you like the recipe we’d be humbled if you cited us in your article.” 

The gauntlet was thrown and I tried it.  I baked it last night and it is yummy.  Of course, knowing me, you know I have to pull in a cookbook of some sort, and for those of you out there who don’t know where the name “Pound Cake” comes from, I pulled out my earliest reference that I have, which is a replica of “American Cookery” written by Amelia Simmons in 1796. It’s really interesting to leaf through this book and try to read some of the recipes.  It is actually a photocopy of the original and along with various spots and stains, the letter “f” is used in place of the letter “s.”  Originally, a pound cake called for one pound of sugar, one pound of butter, one pound of flour, one pound or ten eggs, one gill of rose water and spices to your taste. (Hence pound cake!) We are told to watch it well (remember – wood burning stoves/ovens back then) It will bake in a slow oven in 15 minutes. 

The recipe referred to by Jess is a bit different and perhaps produces a much lighter version than the 1796 version.  What you will need to do to make Jess’s recipe is to begin with a 350° pre-heated oven and a lightly greased and floured 12×4 inch loaf pan.  Then in a bowl, whisk together 1 ¾ cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder and ¼ teaspoon salt.  In another bowl, cream 9 ounces of softened butter, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon orange zest until light and fluffy.  Then slowly add in 4 eggs plus 2 yolks (at room temp), followed by 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar. Then alternating between the flour mixture and ¼ cup room temp milk, gradually add to the sugar/egg mixture.  Lightly dredge in flour 1 ¼ cups of washed and dried fresh cranberries (because fresh cranberries aren’t on the market at this time, I substituted rehydrated dried cranberries and I think they did well) and gently fold into the mixture.  Pour into the pan and bake for 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  For the glaze, combine 2 cups of powdered sugar with 2 ½ tablespoons of fresh orange juice, and using a small spoon, drizzle over the completely cooled cake. 

This is one yummy cake – the unexpected tartness is a wonderful compliment to the buttery richness of the cake and would serve you well at a winter holiday meal – or even right now in the middle of the hot Texas summer along with a bowl of home-made ice cream! 

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