Food, glorious food.

From reading several blogs, and talking to neighbours and friends, there seems to be a common thread to everyone’s new status of ‘stay at home’ citizenship. We’re all cooking. Some are sticking with tried and true recipes, others are taking up new challenges from learning to bake scones, to boldly starting a sour dough culture from scratch.

The oven in our household is also getting a good work out as meals and snacks take a more prominent place in our schedules. Bone stock, normally reserved for the depth of the winter months has commenced earlier than usual this year. You’re all no doubt aware that chicken soup is genuinely good for colds and flus, not the canned or packet variety, but a good home made chicken soup. After a bit of research a few years ago on the benefits of home made chicken soup, it seems the health benefits come from the bone stock. The longer the bones are cooked the more they break done, and the more minerals are leached out into the stock. For mine I use 2 – 3 chicken frames, an onion, a large carrot, 2 stalks of celery including the leafy top, a good handful of salt, and a slug of cider vinegar. Firstly I brown everything on the stove top, then add the liquid and salt, and simmer slowly in the slow cooker for at least 36 hours. I have a sheltered position outside where I can leave it to simmer so as it’s not cluttering up my kitchen, and cooking it outside prevents my house from developing the permanent aroma of chicken soup. I’m not one for passing on exact recipes, mainly because I rarely use an exact recipe. If you want to give your own slow cooked stock a go, the guide I’ve provided may set you on your way, or if you like everything to be listed in precise detail, a google search will bring a good amount of recipes for you to choose from.

The bones almost completely break down, and when strained I end up with about 3 litres of a very cloudy, very tasty stock from my slow cooker. I store it in the fridge leaving the fat to settle on top which helps to preserve it. It lasts me for 4 – 5 days and gets used in gravies and soups, added to stews and casseroles, and I cook my rice in it. I started adding bone stock to our daily winter diet approximately two winters ago, and neither Paul nor I have had a cold since. We used to get at least one each winter. Maybe coincidence, maybe not, but I like to think it’s doing it’s job by giving our immune system a great boost. I figure starting on bone stock a little earlier this year with the Covid-19 pandemic raging through the world can’t do us any harm.

As we all know, one needs to eat a balanced diet for good health. Our diet is completely balanced with A good amount of protein, bone stock, our five serves of fruit and veg, grains, etc on one side of the scales, and all the naughty stuff on the other side of the scales. I don’t think that’s how the experts recommend the scales should be weighted, but that’s how it is in our household. One delightful addition to the naughty side of the scales recently has been a couple of batches of Cinnabon’s, a very special cinnamon bun. If you’ve had the pleasure of indulging in a treat from one of the Cinnabon shops throughout the world, you’ll understand me when I say that to eat one of those sweat, cinnamony, sticky, buns could easily be described as ‘food porn’. Anyone listening to all the oohs and aahs that that seem to come with every delicious mouthful would be forgiven for thinking something other than eating was going on.

Cinnabons

We came across our first Cinnabon store In Dubai several years ago, and experienced one of the most memorable food experiences we’ve ever had. The sweet, yeasty scrolls are served warm with a sticky cream cheese icing, and they are, oh so delicious! A google search for a Cinnabon recipe will bring up countless choices. Having a thermomix, I chose a recipe that used my machine to do the kneading for me. When I make a batch, we give away a few, freeze some for later, and eat far more than we should on the day they’re baked. Last time I baked them I made two dozen and sent an email to the ladies from my walking group advising the ‘drive through’ bakery was open. Several ladies drove by to pick up one or two for their morning tea. In the days of social distancing it enabled us to have a brief face to face catch up, albeit through the car window. Just another novel way to catch up with friends without breaking the rules. I hope everyone else is managing to fit in some catch ups with friends while still sticking to the guidelines. Would the idea of a drive through bakery work for you and your friends?


12 thoughts on “Food, glorious food.

  1. It is a shame that people get greedy with franchises. But with the current situation, it was a wise decision. I do love things with cinnamon, ad to can tell from my recipes and my heritage. It’s also good for you!

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  2. Thank you, they taste pretty good too. Everyone seems to be cooking much more, I’m not sure if that’s just because we’re at home more, or perhaps it’s a primitive instinct of Fattening up in preparation for a famine. One things for certain, a recession is definitely going to follow on from this, perhaps even a depression that will rival ‘the great depression’. I think we all could be, on an instinctive level, going into a preparation mode for something. Mind you, I also think that our particular world is affluent, and buoyant enough to survive whatever follows without any need of our instincts kicking in to prepare.

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  3. We both have a real sweet tooth. I added a lot more cinnamon than the recipe suggested,but they still didn’t have the strong cinnamon flavour of the ones in Dubai. We actually enquired about a Cinnabon franchise years ago, but it’s a very expensive franchise.

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  4. Start a frive thru franchise, Chris! Lol! I think a cinnabon shop opened here last year but probably not great timing because of Covid. The opening days were extremely popular though. I think the Moth would love it but it looks a bit too sweet for me. I would prefer it without the icing, I think a that is the way I tend to eat cakes.
    On a more serious note, I think your drive thru experience is a lovely positive sign of the glue that holds a community together. We really do care and enjoy each other’s company.

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  5. There are two Cinnabon shops in Brisbane, opened up earlier in the year I think. I bet they’re doing a fantastic trade at the moment. We’ve been watching Jamie Oliver’s new show and trying some of his delicious recipes. The fish pie was delicious for dinner on Good Friday. Your buns look amazing.

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  6. The buns are absolutely divine Amanda. I don’t think there are any Cinnabon shops in Australia. I don’t know why as I’m sure in the right location it would be a huge success.just means I have to bake my own – not as good though. The drive through was a huge success, and I’m getting messages from friends who missed out saying they’re first in line for the next time. I think I’ve started something – not sure if that’s a good or bad thing. It’s definitely indicative of the Community spirit where I live.

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  7. I don’t think there any Cinnabon shops in Australia, or if there is I’ve never come across one. I found the one in Dubai by following my nose – the most gorgeous aroma. It was just out of this world as far as taste goes. I’d be visiting the mall far to often if they had a shop only 25 mins away.

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  8. You’re mean! Posting a photo of Cinnabons and sharing with friends and then you don’t even ship me one 🤣. Haha! They are delectable. Fortunately (or my waist says unfortunately), there’s a Cinnabon shop at the mall about 25 minutes away.

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  9. Lovely idea for a community bakery to drive through shate with folks – those buns look decadent. No wonder they were popular.
    I have been cooking more definitely, and thanks for the mention of the sourdough enthusiasts!
    The bone broth would absolutely be good for you. A fantastic heads up for your body’s immune system going into winter.

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