Beginner’s Choice: Finger food and movie nights

Carol’s contribution

Many people have travelled abroad on holiday in the past few months, though many others are still hesitant to venture too far. I fall into the latter group. Carol went to Italy, and she sent photos of tapas (Spanish appetizers: a piece of bread with a meatball covering a drink, and dates with cream cheese) for the blog, along with photos of an enviable dessert buffet, all home-made.

Home-made dessert buffet

Pizza for movie night

I was happy with the home-made pizzas we had for movie night at home last week. Elena said that when she was in Italy, it was a custom to have pizzas, beer and gelato every Saturday evening. Since pizza crusts are available in supermarkets, it’s easy to half-make your own pizzas, provided you have an oven. But there is nothing like home-made pizza crust and toppings.

Lemon treat tart

It’s only July, but we had lemon meringue tarts (my favourite dessert) which reminded me of Christmas. If you need time to plan for Christmas, now is a good time to start. The first half of the year flew by so quickly!

Ferninda’s Friday dinner

Ferninda cooked baked fish and roasted vegetables last week. She wanted some help with adding new dishes to her menu. I thought that I would put together a short class (via Zoom) on discovering the joys of Chinese cooking for her, which covers the basics of Chinese cooking. I will guide her through a few simple dishes tomorrow when we have our hands-on session in the kitchen.

The Kitchen Adventure

Chinese cooking is an adventure in itself. In the process of preparing the class, I learnt that one of the reasons for stir-frying is to cope with shortage of fuel. I also discovered that the mala peppercorn (Sichuan) peppercorn is actually the dried berry of the prickly ash tree.

Chinese cooking requires maximum preparation and minimum cooking, in most cases. Since Ferninda has young children, she needs simple recipes and dishes which are yummy for children. We are going to cook steamed eggs, braised chicken with mushrooms, chicken stew Chinese-style and stir fried vegetables. I know that’s a lot of chicken, but once Ferninda is familiar with the cooking techniques, she can vary the meats.

Juliana’s labour of love

Just when I was about to publish this post, Juliana (in Australia) sent photos of the cake she baked for a friend’s 30th birthday. It’s an amazing cake! I didn’t know that baking is one of Juliana’s many talents.

It’s a short post from me this week since I have to get ready for the zoom class later this afternoon.

If you have time this weekend and would like to bake, Andrea’s butter cake is a must try.

Have a great week ahead.

By Chayo, HomSkil Editor 1, 24 July 2022

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