Archive for the ‘Angel Food’ Category


November 30, 2013

Woke up this morning in the afterglow of yesterday’s lovely, simple and fun Thanksgiving/ Channukkah afternoon.  I can still hear the laughter, see the smiles on everyone’s faces and smell and taste the delicious racks of ribs my son proudly cooked on his beloved bbq/smoker.
(right here is where I ask my dear vegetarian friends to please turn away. avert your eyes! please, don’t judge me)

Picture a tall, happy looking guy standing outside his garage in the freezing cold; bundled up for winter; scarf wrapped around his neck, hands gloved and a nice knitted hat covering his head and ears (ok. it was a bright yellow wool ‘minions’ hat; one half of a two part set knitted by his wife for him and his 3 yr old son for their duo costumes on Halloween, but it did lend the chef a jaunty, humorous air to his serious business of seasoning)

Not being much of a rib gal after Tony Roma’s closed, this newly acquired culinary artistry escapes me…until yesterday….

Watching my grown son lovingly lavishing his attention to tending his culinary creation at the finish line of 8 (count ’em, 8!) hours of basting, turning, temp checking with the precision of a surgeon, was enough to rope me in to at least trying this entree again.

He proudly took me into his kitchen and showed me his impressive array of spices, sauces and rubs; explaining his process of how he chooses which for what reason and how he makes his own combinations for just the right flavors of sweetness and spice for each rack.  I listened with respect as he described the stages of the cooking and reasoning behind each to bring about perfection.

In honor of tradition and with permission from the my son, the host, we’d brought a small roast turkey with trimmings. (and honestly, for me, just in case I didn’t fancy more than a polite bite of ribs…I mean, two whole racks of ribs! Who’s gonna eat them on Turkey Day?)

Under the heading of ‘O ye of little faith,’ he opened the promise land lid, plated those babies and ‘ta da’d’ them into the kitchen with the flair of Guy Fieri  confident in his grillwork or Moses parting the sea.

They looked falling off the bone delectable; tantalizing, scintillating, aromatic and tasted tender, sweet and woody smoked.

I went from ‘oh, I’ll try them because my son made them,’ obligatory to bbq sauce mustachioed convert with the first mouth watering bite.  I found myself thinking, ‘Will two racks be enough?’

It was a stand up feast in the kitchen and those bad boys were gone before you could say, “Let’s eat!”

Wow!  All those hours to make/minutes to devour; leaving only the scent of enjoyment, the sounds of lip smacking contentment and smiles on our sauce smeared faces.

Later that night, my nose still filled with mesquite and honey, I wished for more.  Turkey, my tush! I only yearned for what was gone but not forgotten.  We’d split the leftovers; the usual turkey for sandwiches, the sage stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans and cranberry sauce.

And all I craved was wispy dreams of ribs.

As easy laughter and warmth of the day spent in happy camaraderie came floating back to me upon awakening, I realized what a gift my son had given all of us in the invitation to gather at his home.  His was the same labor of love as mine was when, for all his growing up years, I got up at 5 in the morning to start the turkey roasting for as many hours as the bird’s pounds determined, in order to create a fine meal and the custom of giving thanks…. with the grace of the extra ingredient of every really good meal and family tradition…the ingredient of love.

And on this historic, double holiday of Thanksgiving and Chanukkah which will not occur for another 70,000 years, I am filled to delicious, overflowing heart warmth as I share the threads of light we pass along, each in our own way, to one another other; to our children and our children’s children; opening our hearts for better than the best we can imagine in all outcomes… Happy, healthy history with what changes may evolve.

For and from me and mine, to old and new ways of celebrating the good in life…. here’s wishing you a moment in history where new meets old…Happy Thanksribukkah!


Angel Food

May 11, 2008

by Florence Ondré

What could be better than finding a good, new Thai restaurant to add to one’s list of food from the Angels?
The answer tonight is finding that restaurant and two Earth Angels at the table next to us, who also enjoy the Heavenly fragrant dishes from The Land of Smiles.
On our way to our favorite Asian Buffet, “East” out on Rte 110 in Huntington, NY, we were torn between the incredible spread there and an ever lingering hankering for a little something-something from Thailand for dinner.
As we pulled into the parking lot at East, we were met by a mob scene. People lined up from the inside of the cavernous restaurant to outside the door, several deep and barely a parking spot to be had in the wrap around lot.
Hmmmmm. We were glad to see our friends’ establishment doing so well and with hunger pangs on the rise and time growing late, that did it for us.
The question, “To Thai or not to Thai?” was plain handwriting on the wall.
A happy blessing to our friends and a quick punch into the GPS system of the car showed several Thai places in the area which we’d surprisingly not tried yet.
One named Tiny Thai called to us and off we drove to the nearby town of Farmingdale, where on Main St., sure enough, sandwiched in between several ethnic restaurants and stores, was a truly tiny hole in the wall.
We pulled around the corner and I said to Tom, “Go on. You go scope it out. See what the menu has on it and sniff the cooking.”
This is something we frequently do. My motto is, “If it smells good, I’m willing to experiment” and “If the menu has some of my favorites, I’m gonna try the place.”
I have a hard time remembering any Thai restaurant we’ve ever walked out of.”
Tom returned smiling and announced that it smelled good and the menu had variety. Parking was plentiful on street and in the lot behind the restaurant.
Tiny Thai has several tables and is decorated with traditional Thai carvings and pictures. One waits at the door until a table is cleaned off and the one waiter scrambles to get water and your appetizers to you while dropping off a fairly extensive menu of mouth watering selections.
Tables are close together so it’s nearly impossible not to connect with one’s neighbor and this is a good thing, since you get to see what dishes they’re having and inhale the aromas of ginger, basil and lemongrass to help you decide on your choices.
We lucked out with proximity to another couple who were finishing off an aromatic, saucy dish which upon inquiry turned out to be beef salad. They told us they really enjoyed that dish along with the Drunken noodles and vegetables in a red curry sauce and loved the place so much they’d been there the night before too.
Now that’s a rave as far as I’m concerned. 
We ordered an appetizer of chicken satay, which came covered in succulent lemongrass satay marinade with a zippy peanut sauce for dipping. The chicken was generous in portion and moistness. 
Our table neighbors were as good as their word. The beef salad on crisp lettuce with thinly sliced red onion in a piquant sauce of slightly spiced lime juice was delectable. Tender slices of beef, soaking up the sweet-sour juice of the dish practically melted in our mouths and left a delicate hint of spices on the tongue. 
Good beginning.
Next we ordered Tamarind Pad Thai with Thai sausage and gigantic prawns; an interesting twist on a basic dish, robust in a spicy, reddish brown sauce.
Tom’s chicken in yellow curry (also known as Royal curry because it is one of the King’s favorite dishes) satisfied the kick of the meal and a crispy Tamarind duck with cashews, was lusty with meatiness in addition to the perfect crisp of skin. Fresh green beans, carrot slivers and broccoli prettied up the plate and the palate and the accompanying sauce, served on the side, was luscious in fruited sweetness and shallots. A perfect compliment.
The Thai iced tea here was a really good, balanced blend of tea and milk; not too sweet or too bland or bitter, as can sometimes be found elsewhere.
The added delight of the evening was the conversation between tables (literally a handshake away) about this magnificent cuisine gift to the world. 
We talked about our favorite dishes and the ingredients we’d enjoyed and restaurants we’d been to which had impressed. 
It was a “getting to know you” through the language of Angel food; Thai nectar from the Gods.
The smallness of the place, the one waiter who miraculously got everyone served with food that was fragrant and fine, faded into the background to a pleasant visit with amiable new acquaintances.
It is true, as my friend, Susan, the owner of East Buffet restaurant, told me at a round table evening for my birthday at her place, “There is no greater joy than to sit with friends enjoying good food.”
In this my dear Tom and I agree…and the friends can be old, new; long term or freshly met. 
This kind of cuisine I call Angel food has brought many wonderful people from all around the world into our lives on the level playing field of such concoctions as green papaya salad, mee krob, tom kha gai soup, fresh vegetables, curry sauces of red, yellow and green, myriad Mussaman curries and plethoras of Pad Thais.
For Tiny Thai, at 187 Main Street, Farmingdale, NY, 11735, phone, 516-694-3302, we say, “Stretch out your wings. Go! Try it. You’ll like it.”  

The Great Dessert Hunt

November 10, 2006

Florence Ondré

On the trail of great desserts
A love of goodies never hurts
An eye for color, textures too
Will get you through a nosh or two
To find the pastries, cakes and pies
Which fill one with delighted sighs
Of Ummmm and Yumm and oh that’s good
Each cookie tasting as it should
Sweet and crunchy; soft with flavor
Bite sized chocolate to savor
Marzipan, pistachio
Lemon meringue as frothed as snow
Red Velvet topped with gooed ganache
Shortbread iced with swirled panache
Mousse mango and raspberry
Tinge the palate merrily
Pumpkin cake with frost cream cheese
Drizzled caramel to please
Passion fruit on densest fudge
Fills the heart and gives the nudge
To sample further Danish fruit
And travel on quite resolute
In finding treats unique divine
Mouth watering and so sublime
Ginger Pear Tartlette
A taste no one will soon forget
Bananas Foster, S’mores Pie, Gingerbread
Cinnamon Biscotti or Orange Scones instead
Cupcakes that look like garden flowers
Reel me in with magic powers
Creme Brulees and Cheesecake slices
Life’s pure pleasurable vices
Cannoli cream with citrus hints
Plates of pretty pastel mints
I’ll taste them all if I am able
To share with friends at party table
Which brings me joy to see each smile
At the power dessert has to beguile
To warm, enliven, every heart
When served buffet style not ala carte
It’s my job, the best to find
Someone’s got to do it, I don’t mind
So off I go to make my way
On the great dessert hunt this very day.

ANGELFOOD: Curried Creme of Pumpkin Soup

October 24, 2006

My good friend, Owen, is a great cook who loves good food as much as I do. When he heard I was starting a section on my blog called ANGELFOOD, where I want to share recipes, delicious dishes and favorite restaurants, this was his gift of Autumn ambrosia to all of us. Way to start off the ANGELFOOD on eflorence. Dig in everyone!
Thanks and Yum, Owen!

Curried Creme of Pumpkin Soup
Recipe: Owen S. Lager

1- Qt. Chicken Soup or stock (homemade is always best,
but any will do).
½- cup additional broth, reserved
1- Can pumpkin (not the pumpkin pie mixture)
2- Onions, chopped
2 (or more) Carrots, peeled, chopped fine
1- TBS Curry powder
1- tsp Ginger powder
½ cup milk or cream
2 – 3 TBS Honey (or to taste)*
salt and black pepper to taste**
OPTION: add regular or sweet potato to help thicken (pureed)

1. Sauté onions and carrots until they caramelize;
2. In the reserved chicken broth (soup, stock) puree onions
and carrots;
3. In a soup pot combine the chicken broth, pureed onion/carrot/broth mixture and pumpkin; bring to near boil;
4. Reduce heat and add curry and ginger;
5. Allow soup to simmer, stirring occasionally with whisk;
6. Add honey*;
7. Allow soup to simmer, stirring occasionally with whisk;
8. Reduce heat and finish with milk or cream; DO NOT BOIL.
9. salt and black pepper to taste**
10. Approve seasonings and adjust. (Suggestion: you may add other complimentary seasonings such as nutmeg, ground cardamom, allspice, etc.,in very small amounts)
11. Serve with warm crusty bread.

This hearty soup satisfies with its texture, taste and aroma, and is very quick and relatively inexpensive to make. It is chock-full of vitamin A and is a good source of fiber.

*In place of honey, SPLENDA or sugar can be used (or EQUAL™ after soup has finished cooking; cooking will destroy the proteins that make EQUAL™ sweet).

NOTE: Persons with a potassium restriction should avoid this soup, as the pumpkin and optional potato are loaded with potassium.


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