Archive for the Food Category

What A Messed Up World – part 2

Posted in Family, Food, Mental Health, Personal Thoughts, Politics, The World on April 24, 2017 by Neal

What is a “lucky country”? 

Is it lots of land and freedom to live we’re you want? Is it the ability to protest or disagree with the government and not fear reprisals? How about wealth that makes you not want for anything? Religious freedom? You could probably ask thousands of people and you would get a mix of these things plus many more definitions. In fact the idea for a lucky country is so broad that it all boils down to a simple common factor, it’s people. This is what makes a country lucky in my view. Without people all you have is land that no one uses. People shape a country, give it focus and direction. That being said we can easily loose sight of what it means to be in a lucky country. 

My wife recently got back from a missions trip with her school to Cambodia. She was talking about some of the things that could be said and not said which we would normally take for granted. Yet the biggest thing that stood out to me was the resourcefulness of the people there. For a developing country they certainly don’t take anything for granted. Wallets made from recycled tyre rubber, iPad cases using recycled paper and fabric, laminated newspaper wallets and pencil cases, coffee cup wrappers made from upholstery scraps. This might not seem like much but for many it’s the difference between eating that night or going hungry. 

Perhaps it is necessity that creates a lucky country? How many of us would spend 13hrs a day sifting through garbage piles looking for materials to use or sell? After all many of us take what we have in life for granted. We have food, roof over our heads, safe place to sleep, if something we own is broken we toss it out and usually get a new one (seems to include spouses as well if you look at statistics 😁 ). Without a necessity we don’t seem to have a driving force in our lives. Keep in mind I am being very general here so it’s not the same for every individual. 

If you read stories of life during the two world wars, there are loads of examples of people using their ingenuity to help keep things moving with limited resources. Recycling was an everyday thing. Growing your own food made it possible to extend limited rations for many valuable days for those not on the front lines. Those fighting also used creative ideas at times to get by with their own limited resources. 

To me a lucky country is made by its people. Those who take what little they have and find ways to live a full life. People who help their neighbours to thrive. Diversity of cultures and nations that learn together to be a greater country as a whole than a country of singular people.


Let’s Experiment – Part 2

Posted in Food, Personal Thoughts on March 3, 2017 by Neal

Well after 2 weeks I finished my experiment with home made ginger ale. It’s defiantly very gingerish and probably needs a better filter than a tea strainer. Bit of a tangy after taste but that may be due to letting it ferment for longer than planned. 

I used the following Ginger Ale receipe and have a few ideas to consider for next time.

1. Using bottled or filtered water. I used boiled water so may have had some residual chemicals which affected the time it took for fermentation.

2. Storing in a better sealed bottle for fermentation as the bottle I used had its seal missing. I also made the beginners mistake of opening it to release pressure.

3. I used golden syrup instead of molasses as that’s all I had. Perhaps using different sugars and ingredients will result in a different taste. 

Lots of sediment in the bottle but it sure gave a satisfying fizz sound when I popped the top. 

I have managed to kill the ginger bug as I used tap water to top it up without thinking so I’m going to start over. My next experiment will be to make two batches. One with bug and one without. 

For now I have 2 litres of ginger ale which tastes very pleasant and works well also mixed with soda water.

Let’s Experiment – Part 1

Posted in Food, Personal Thoughts on February 21, 2017 by Neal

I like experimenting when I cook. I’ll look at what food options we have and usually can throw something together that tastes good. A classic example is my pasta sauce, which I’ve had people ask for the recipe of. Bit tricky to explain that it’s what ever I find in the fridge. I will add all sorts of things to the base of garlic, tinned tomatoes. It may have three or five bean mix, assorted veggies, beef or kangaroo mince… it all depends on what I have on hand. 

So after having a drink of ginger ale over the weekend in wondereded what would be needed to make my own. I present what I hope to be my ginger bug…

What you do is mix ginger, sugar and water together and let it ferment. This gives you a base to make soft drinks off of. Be interesting to see how this all works out. Will post progress reports 😄