Graduation and End of School

PinExt Graduation and End of School

Everything comes to an end. For many these last days in May are filled with graduation plans and parties and thinking about what the summer, and indeed, the future, will hold for them. These are very festive times as well as bitter sweet times when the joy of the present can turn into feelings of “What now?”

For those of you in this situation of having your years of study come to an end, I wish you well. May all your hopes and dreams for your future be fulfilled. Though “study”, in some form or another, continues throughout life

My term here on this blog is also coming to an end. I have tried to squeeze in this writing, which I love to do, in between my work with food, which I also love to do. But I am finding that the summer is becoming too crowded with work and too busy. Therefore I must close down one part of what I love, to concentrate on the other.

However, I am delegating my writing blog to my friend and fellow food enthusiast, Lee Jackson. I have known Lee for many years, having worked with her on Amy Houts’¬† first cookbook, “Cooking Around the Calendar With Kids: Holiday and Regional Food and Fun”.

She is working with Amy on another book and I am sure she will want to tell you all about its progress, from Amy’s initial interest in working with children, to this, her second book in the series.

I know she will take you on an engaging, informative, and fun-filled food journey.

I thank you for reading my posts these past 2 years and for all your input and comments. It’s been fun reading about your experiences, both food and other, and hopefully I may have contributed some to your love of all things food-related.

I may make some guest appearances so, until we meet again, “so long”, and I wish you good health and good food.

Best wishes,
Chef Crombie

 Graduation and End of School
PinExt Graduation and End of School

Make Your Own Stuff

PinExt Make Your Own Stuff
80143269 d030cca600 m Make Your Own Stuff
Image by flickrich via Flickr

Did you know it really feels good to make your own stuff? Whether the “stuff” is making a drawing or picture, making a model airplane, or getting food ready to eat. When you make your own stuff for meals you can really feel creative and empowered.

And what would be a good dish to make for a meal, you ask? My favorite go-to meal consists of roasted vegetables and a protein food.

Roast Vegetables

You just scrub well and cut up any vegetables you have on hand. This might be foods such as potatoes (white or sweet), carrots, onion, garlic, green pepper, celery, mushrooms, squash, broccoli and others.

Then you dribble a little virgin olive oil over them, stir well to distribute the oil, splash a little balsamic vinegar over them and that’s it. Spread them in a single layer on a cookie sheet or other large flat pan. Roast in 425 degree oven about 30 minutes.

Using a long handled spatula, periodically stir them to prevent them from sticking to the bottom.

They will come out with a nice dark color, maybe a little too brown in spots, but crispy and oh, so good. You start out with a large amount and end up with a much small smaller portion when they are through roasting. The flavor is delicious.

For your protein, add any cooked chicken, hamburger, or roast beef. Or you can just sprinkle shredded Parmesan cheese over the vegetables and have a one dish meal.

To your health,

Chef Crombie

 Make Your Own Stuff
PinExt Make Your Own Stuff

Happy First Day of Spring!

PinExt Happy First Day of Spring!
202px Colorful spring garden Happy First Day of Spring! Image via Wikipedia

Everyone is anxious to see the flowers come up, leaves bud out on trees, and weather warm up. With spring there is new hope.

It is good to be hopeful. This tends to lift the soul and put a smile on one’s face. It makes a person healthier and happier. Having hope may even create better relationships with family, friends, and community members.

Dr. Charles R. Synder is a psychologist at the University of Kansas who studies hope. According to him, there are certain characteristics hopeful people have that others do not. Some of these include:

  • being more confident in reaching goals
  • staying flexible in finding ways to reach goals or aiming toward similar ones
  • turning to others to help them reach goals
  • believing that things get better with time

What are some things you hope for?

Is it perhaps that you will always have friends?
To have a loving family?
To have a healthy family?
For nice teachers?
For no more bullying or fighting?
For peace and justice in the world?

Springtime is a time to renew our hope and inspire that hope in others.

I hope you have a wonderful spring!

Chef Crombie

 Happy First Day of Spring!
PinExt Happy First Day of Spring!

How to Prevent Kitchen Accidents

PinExt How to Prevent Kitchen Accidents
202px Edicraft toaster How to Prevent Kitchen AccidentsImage via Wikipedia

Here is a list of potentially dangerous home situations. I suggest you discuss them with another member of your family. What would you do if any of the following occurred in your home?

Jennifer has just broken a glass in the sink. How should she clean it up?

Halley just came home from the store with some cleanser and bleach. Where should they be stored?

Meridee is washing dishes but wants to go and turn on TV. What should she do first and why?

She also splashed some water on the floor. What should she do?

Juluis has a pizza in the oven and is ready to take it out. What should he do first? Then what? Then?

Matt is tall but not tall enough to reach a high shelf for a plate. Other than call for help, what should he do?

B.J. was making some toast and a slice got caught in the toaster. What should B.J. do?

Hope you’ve come up with¬† safe ways of handling these situations.

Here’s to working safely in the kitchen,

Chef Crombie

 How to Prevent Kitchen Accidents
PinExt How to Prevent Kitchen Accidents

Get on the Citrus Wagon with This Orange Delight

PinExt Get on the Citrus Wagon with This Orange Delight
202px OrangeBloss wb Get on the Citrus Wagon with This Orange DelightImage via Wikipedia

I just came from the store and saw they had tons of oranges and grapefruits. I bought some red grapefruits and they are oh, so tasty and good! Had enough oranges so didn’t buy any.

Since I had a good supply of oranges, I’ve been enjoying making fresh orange juice and smoothies, and adding oranges to salads, meats and desserts.

Here is a simple but very fancy dessert using oranges that I often make. I hope you will like it, too. So go ahead, get out some showy tall glasses or dessert goblets and surprise your family with this elegant dessert:

Fluffy Orange Parfait

If using fresh oranges, separate and save segments from one orange.

1/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
or prepared unsweetened orange juice
1 package (1 tablespoon) unflavored gelatin
1 3/4 cups orange juice
1/2 pint whipping cream

Add gelatin to 1/4 cup orange juice and wait a few minutes to allow the gelatin to dissolve.

While gelatin is resting, pour 1 3/4 cup orange juice into medium size pan and bring to boiling point. Gradually add gelatin, stirring gently until gelatin is dissolved.

Cool and then refrigerate until mixture is slightened thickened.

At this point, pour whipping cream into a deep bowl and beat with electric beater or rotary beater. Beat until cream is light and fluffy but don’t beat too long or it will turn into butter. When mixture is fluffy, slowly add cooled gelatin mixture and beat at low speed until it is blended throughout.

Spoon into parfait glasses, goblets, or other dessert-type dishes and refrigerate until firm.

When ready to serve, top each dessert with three segments from orange or use canned Mandarin orange segments.

Simply delightful!

Chef Crombie

 Get on the Citrus Wagon with This Orange Delight
PinExt Get on the Citrus Wagon with This Orange Delight

Sell Spirit and Hope

PinExt Sell Spirit and Hope
ChefSP Sell Spirit and HopeImage via Wikipedia

Instead of despair and frustration, think and talk about possibilities and hope. Hope for the future and hope our lives get better. These dismal days will not last forever. After the storms, the sun will shine.

Good things continue to happen to us, our friends call us, there is food on the table. We are blessed with what we have. It may not be all we want, but it is what we have, and for that we are truly thankful.

Chef Crombie

 Sell Spirit and Hope
PinExt Sell Spirit and Hope

Secret Valentine Message

PinExt Secret Valentine Message
2265266726 65f2e5d4fc m Secret Valentine MessageImage by blunck2 via Flickr

Oh, what a busy day! All of these Valentine cookies to bake yet, each with its own secret message.

Here is my secret message for you inside this “Valentine cookie”:

“Thanks for reading my blog.
I hope you are enjoying this.
Come back often.
I appreciate you stopping by
and wish you a very
Happy Valentine’s Day
filled with much happiness!”

Best wishes,
Chef Crombie

 Secret Valentine Message
PinExt Secret Valentine Message

Nutrition Jumble / Making Good Food Choices

PinExt Nutrition Jumble / Making Good Food Choices
202px White bread 800 Nutrition Jumble / Making Good Food ChoicesImage via Wikipedia

Today, let’s take a look at some categories of foods or common words and phrases found on food labels. I would like you to divide these up into two columns. On one side, place all the words or phrases that are considered “good words”, or those that promote health, and on the other side write the “bad words”, or those that drain our health.

Select from the following list:
hydrogenated fats
whole food
whole wheat pasta
whole grain
white rice
artificial flavoring
whole grain oatmeal
corn syrup
refined flours
high fructose
artificial dyes
plain organic yogurt
refined – white bread
brown rice

Tomorrow we’ll compare our lists. Making wise food choices helps us stay healthy. Do you believe that what you eat helps determine how you feel and perform in school and at home? Chef Crombie wants you to be fit and healthy.

 Nutrition Jumble / Making Good Food Choices
PinExt Nutrition Jumble / Making Good Food Choices