Looking for a reliable dish that’s family-friendly, loved by all, and incredibly easy to make? We know of a summertime staple that won’t steer you wrong. It’s so easy, in fact, that you barely need a recipe…but for best results, you should absolutely use ours. Start with this Lemony Cucumber-and-Herb Pasta Salad recipe as your base, and from there, customize to your heart’s content.
The base recipe is a fresh take on pasta salad that will spice up your cookout repertoire. Each bite will deliver on fresh herbs, crisp cucumbers, and briny feta. Dressed simply with mustardy lemon-garlic dressing, this crowd-pleasing dish lends to a variety of mix and match options. We recommend swapping the pasta for any of the ingredients below:
Cannellini beans or white navy beans. Creamy when bit into these beans will add a boost of protein to the mix. Plus, their subtle flavor melds nicely with the other ingredients and soaks up the dressing.
Quinoa. This gluten-free grain would be a winning swap in this salad. It’s a complete protein and rich in nutrients. Go for rainbow quinoa to add a pop of color.
Couscous. The Mediterranean vibe of this recipe with its combo of cucumbers, feta, and mint is pretty much begging to be mixed with couscous. Made from semolina, much like pastas, it’s a great fit. For a similar stellar combo, use Israeli couscous. Its larger pearls are chewy in the best way and toasting them lightly in olive oil before adding water boosts the flavor.
Bulgur. Its tender chewy texture works pleasantly well in salads. These wheat kernels have been steamed, dried, and crushed and it’s what you’d use when making tabbouleh. Chopped tomatoes in this mix could be a really great idea.
Farro. Dense and chewy this rich and nutty grain is a delicious substitute for pasta. Although its subtleness is amenable to different flavors, it really loves Italian vibes. Swap some basil for the cilantro and mozzarella or parmesan for the feta and you’re pretty much in Italy.
A salad this good deserves a storage container that’s just as great. This glass bowl with a wooden lid will give you all the heart eyes. For storage in individual portions, these Weck jars with wood lids are just too cute. Consider your menu planning for any summer festivity done!
Over the years people have turned to Google to look up recipes for “buka puasa” meals, buffets dishes and Hari Raya feasts. Here’s a look at some of Malaysia’s favourite Ramadan dishes, desserts, and Raya cookies during the coming season based on searches on Google Malaysia in the last few years.
The main dish is the centrepiece of any given meal, and Malaysians love a hearty, meaty dish. The usual Raya classics like beef rendang remain a staple of local households during this season, but alternatives like spicy tomato chicken (ayam masak merah) and spicy black beef (daging masak hitam) are also recurring favourites.
Malaysia’s top 10 favourite Ramadan-Raya main dish recipes:
1. Spicy tomato chicken
2. Soy sauce chicken
3. Chicken curry
4. Chicken paprik
5. Roasted spiced chicken
6. Beef rendang
7. Roasted chicken
8. Spicy black beef
9. Grilled fish
10. Mango kerabu
There’s always room for dessert after a meal, and this is most definitely true after a long day of fasting. Puddings of many different types are a common sight at Ramadan bazaars, but cakes are just as popular as a dessert option for many in recent years.
Malaysia’s top 10 favourite Ramadan-Raya dessert recipes:
1. Chocolate cake
2. Batik cake
3. Bread pudding
4. Caramel pudding
5. Cheesekut (cheese biscuit)
7. Marble cake
8. Banana cake
9. Corn pudding
10. Sago gula Melaka
Homemade kuih raya
One may be forgiven for thinking that making kuih Raya at home is no longer a tradition, especially when it has become more convenient to buy them in bulk. This is simply not the case at all – Malaysians are still very much into making their own versions.
Malaysia’s top 10 favourite kuih raya recipes:
1. Nestum cookies
2. Cheese tart
3. Honey cornflakes
4. Chocolate cornflakes
5. Makmur biscuit
6. Semperit Susu
7. Mazola biscuit
8. Sarang Semut
9. Rolled pineapple tart
10. London Almond cookies
Chocolate chip cookies are 80 years old this year.
Innkeeper Ruth Graves Wakefield was known widely for her cooking at the Toll House Inn in Whitman, Massachusetts, before the accomplished baker hit on the idea of mixing bits of chocolate into cookie dough.
In 1930, she published the cookbook “Ruth Wakefield’s Toll House Tried and True Recipes,” which went through several printings. The 1938 edition was the first to feature her original recipe Toll House Chocolate Crunch Cookie. At the time, home cooks had to make their own chips by breaking chocolate bars into small morsels.
By 1939, chocolate manufacturer Nestle had seized on the recipe and promoted it in newspapers across the country. The company rolled out chocolate chip morsels a year later. The “original” recipe is still touted today on the Nestle website and morsels bags.
I have “original” in quotation marks because according to WCVB-TV in Boston, the inn’s real recipe called for shortening instead of butter and included mixing the baking soda with a bit of water.
I have had much success following the Nestle version with butter. And, while the cookie is tasty, it also is adaptable to other baking chips available today.
I recently made the recipe where I divided the dough before adding the chocolate chips and nuts. I finished out half the dough as the recipe instructed. In the other half, I added white morsels, macadamia nuts and dried, sweetened cranberries. (Many brands of white morsels technically do not contain enough cocoa butter to be called white chocolate.)
With such a tried-and-true recipe, the proper combination of heat and time ensure success in creating a moist cookie that holds together when picked up by hand. I also line my baking sheet with parchment paper and slide the paper to a cooling rack to ensure that the bottom of the baked cookies do not darken and become too crisp because of residual heat from the baking sheet.
My variation of the cookie recipe is at the end of this story.
Peaches and Beets make an unlikely duo
Learn to roast fresh beets, and you open a door to an earthy salad addition that has both flavor and texture.
Leave about 2 inches of the stem intact before washing the beets and then drying them with a paper towel. Place beets on a sheet of foil, drizzle the beets with olive oil and seal the beets in the foil. Roast in a 425-degree oven until fork tender, which takes about 30 minutes for a small, plum-sized beet and more than an hour for one the size of a baseball.
When the roasted beets are cool enough to handle, the skin usually peels off with a knife. Dice the beets and store in a sealed container in the refrigerator. Toss the chilled beets in your favorite salad that calls for a vinaigrette dressing.
For a greenless salad, combine the diced beets with sliced peaches and almond slivers and dress lightly with a quality, sweet fruity white vinegar such as Cordell’s Gravenstein Apple Balsamic vinegar.
Beets recently were available at the Abilene Farmers Market, which is open 7 a.m. to noon Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at North First and Mesquite streets in the Frontier Texas! overflow parking lot.
Tree-ripened peaches are available at Denton Valley Farms south of Clyde. A store on the property is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fridays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays. Fredericksburg peaches also have been available the last couple of weeks at the corner of Rebecca Lane and Catclaw Drive.
White Chips-Macadamia-Cranberry Cookies
(Based on Original Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe at www.verybestbaking.com)
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups Nestle Toll House Premier White Morsels
1 cup macadamia nuts
3/4 cup dried, sweetened cranberries
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
3. In a large mixer bowl, beat butter, white sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
4. Gradually beat in flour mixture until combined.
5. Stir in morsels, nuts and cranberries.
6. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto prepared baking sheet. (If dough seems too soft, first chill it in refrigerator for about 30 minutes.) Bake for 9 to 11 minutes, until golden. Cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. Yields about 36 cookies.
While KFC isn’t giving up many details about just what the “chicken” will be made of, Foodbeast says it will include their secret blend of 11 spices.
“Development of the recipe is still in its very early stages, and so the options we’re exploring in our kitchen are still top secret,” KFC said in a statement to Foodbeast. “Once we’ve perfected the recipe we aim to test with customers this year, and if all goes well, we hope to launch a new vegetarian option in 2019.”
Sadly for all of us American vegetarians, for now, the faux meat will only be available in the United Kingdom. But if it does well there, we can always hope it will make its way across the pond.
Even if the faux fried chicken doesn’t end up in America, it stills seems to be a step in the right direction for anyone craving meatless fast food. And it is possible to make your own version of fried “chicken” by using vegan chicken you can buy at your local store, or even cauliflower.
Would you be willing to try a vegetarian version of KFC’s famous friend chicken?
This story originally appeared on Simplemost. Checkout Simplemost for other great tips and ideas to make the most out of life.
A popular street food all over Italy, arancini are deep-fried balls of rice, usually stuffed with meat or cheese. Originating in Sicily, their name literally means “little orange,” referring to their shape and golden-brown color. In Rome, they’re sometimes called suppli, meaning “surprise,” because of the little morsels hiding inside. They were invented as a way to use up leftover risotto from the night before, and every Italian family probably has its own recipe for them.
I’ve been making traditional savory arancini for years. Most of the time, I use risotto Milanese—a simple risotto perfumed with saffron—and stuff them with large cubes of mozzarella. When you take a bite, you get a satisfying crunch on the outside, followed by the soft, supple rice center, and then a burst of gooey melted cheese that you can stretch from your mouth like a telephone cord (which is why Romans also call them suppli al telefono). Since the savory versions are such a hit whenever I make them, I started wondering if a sweet version would be equally successful.
I imagined arancini that were something like chocolate-filled doughnuts. Instead of savory risotto, I’d use a sweet vanilla rice, similar to rice pudding. I wanted a gooey, oozy center of chocolate, but not just any chocolate. I wanted Nutella—that irresistible hazelnut chocolate spread that makes me want to sit on the floor in my pantry and spoon it into my mouth straight from the jar. I wanted them to be coated in cinnamon sugar—just like the doughnuts you buy from the bakery. I wanted them to be crispy and warm and sweet.
The result wasn’t just good, it was nirvana. That cinnamon-sugar crunch into sweet vanilla rice is heavenly, but it’s the molten Nutella center that will take you over the edge. It explodes into your mouth, coating your teeth with silky, hazelnut-y chocolate. But these are better than doughnuts because the rice gives it even more texture: they are crunchy, soft, chewy, and oozy all at once.
Nutella arancini are simple to make, but you need to start them the day before you want to serve them. The rice needs overnight refrigeration to get cold and sticky enough to form into balls. I also make the Nutella center the day before so it’s rock-hard frozen, which makes the spread easier to work with. Once that’s done, it’s just a matter of forming the balls and dredging them in breadcrumbs—a bit fiddly, but also fun. This is something your kids can help out with if you don’t mind a little mess in the kitchen.
This recipe makes around 36 arancini, which may sound like a lot, but I find the rice cooks best when working with this amount of it. Besides, it makes sense to make more than you (think you) need—the labor and time required to make 18 and 36 are practically the same. What’s more, they freeze really well; just layer them in a container, separating layers of arancini between sheets of parchment paper, and stash them away in the freezer for up to three months. The next time you have a craving for them, it’s as easy as defrosting and frying. Believe me when I say the only thing more amazing than these arancini is how quickly they get gobbled up.
Makes 36 arancini
4 cups water (divided; ½ cup for dredging station)
2 ½ cups Arborio rice
2 cups caster (or superfine) sugar
4 cups whole milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
400 grams (14 oz) Nutella
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups fine dry breadcrumbs
2 cups granulated sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
4 cups neutral oil, such as vegetable, canola, or similar, for frying (use more or less as needed)
Ethan Odlozinski’s granola is a high-fibre treat with a higher purpose.
For the past two years, the Grade 10 Orillia Secondary School student has assembled and baked batch after batch of the nutritious mix in his family’ kitchen, before packaging and selling the finished product.
After covering his costs, Odlozinski squirrels away the profits to fund an upcoming three-week trip to Kenya in August that promises to prove rewarding for the local youth.
“I want to make a change,” he told Simcoe.com during an interview at his home.
Travelling to the Maasai Mara region, he and 30 other Canadian and international youth will work with local residents to build a school or well.
“In the mornings I’ll be going to the work site and building, so laying down bricks and doing heavy lifting and mixing cement,” he said. “Later in the afternoon we’ll be doing some leadership activities and team-building activities and learning about social change.”
In between work, Odlozinski will explore the local culture and language, spend time with children and visit patients at a nearby hospital.
“I’ve been on trips before, but I’ve never done a volunteer work trip,” he added.
It was Odlozinski’s older brother, Jonah, who started the granola business while fundraising for a trip to Kenya in 2015.
Inspired by his sibling, Odlozinski took over the business two years ago while retaining his brother’s name on the packaging – hence Jonah’s Granola.
“Each batch usually makes about four bags,” he said. “From start to finish, it probably takes about one hour of work.”
He starts by toasting the nuts and seeds, which are naturally sweetened with agave nectar, before popping the mix into the oven.
Cranberries are added before the finished product is packaged in clear bags.
“We modified the recipe to make it more cost efficient,” he said, adding his entry into the business world has proved a learning experience.
“You have to keep track of your profits and make it and distribute it and everything like that.”
Odlozinski sells his granola at Mariposa Market and the Orillia Farmers Market, as well as securing the occasional private sale.
“I’ve made, roughly 1,200 bags,” he said, offering a quick estimate.
A typical day at the farmers market will alone see him part with 50 to 60 bags.
“I set up my tent and my table and just sell it out of there,” he said, pointing to area craft shows as another popular outlet for his homemade mix.
Pricing is key to ensure “that someone will want to buy it, but then you are also making some money off of your sales,” he added.
Odlozinski must cover the cost of travel and accommodations to Kenya – about $5,500 – as well as other expenses related to the trip.
Currently, he is within $1,000 of his goal.
Bags of granola are priced at $7 each or two for $12.
The upcoming trip is organized by Me to We, which works with the Canadian charity Free the Children to eliminate the cycle of poverty.
One of the things I most look forward to about European holidays is ice-cream. I find myself hypnotised by the feast of flavours perched in the windows of gelaterias, pondering how many I could realistically fit into one holiday. On a recent trip to Spain, I tried strawberry cheesecake ice-cream and was blown away. After some experimentation back home, I now suspect the Spanish version used actual cheesecake. And although I’m never usually one to shy away from a culinary project, baking up a cheesecake solely for the purpose of using it in ice-cream seems a bit much, even for me – but today’s recipe is close: rich, creamy and bursting with summer flavours.
Strawberry cheesecake ice-cream with shortbread
Prep 20 min
Cook 10 min
Chill 2-6 hr
For the shortbread
150g cold salted butter
150g plain flour
40g icing sugar
For the ice-cream
100g double cream
200g whole milk
4 egg yolks
150g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp salt
5 tbsp good-quality strawberry jam
Fresh mint leaves
Heat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4, and put a large bowl in the freezer to chill. Meanwhile, make the shortbread: blitz the butter, flour and sugar in a food processor until the mix looks like fine breadcrumbs. Divide between two rectangular tins, roughly 10cm x 25cm, and press down firmly, then bake for 20 minutes, until golden. Set aside to cool completely.
Make the base for the ice-cream: mix the double cream, milk, egg yolks and sugar in a saucepan, and cook over a medium heat. Use a balloon whisk to keep the mix moving constantly, and keep cooking for a few minutes until it thickens. Remove from the hob, stir in the mascarpone, vanilla and salt, and set aside to cool, giving it an occasional stir. Once cooled, put it in the fridge to chill for about two hours.
Once chilled, put the mixture in the freezer drum of an ice-cream maker and churn until it starts to freeze. Once the ice-cream has frozen, transfer it to the chilled bowl. Break up half the shortbread into little chunks and stir it into the ice-cream; cut the other half into wedges and set aside. Stir the jam into the ice-cream, one spoon at a time, taking care not to overmix it; you want to see little ripples of jam throughout the ice-cream. Transfer the whole mix to a tub and pop it in the freezer.
If you don’t have an ice-cream maker, pop the fridge-chilled mix into a tub and put it in the freezer. Remove at 25-minute intervals to give it a brief, vigorous stir, until the mix starts to freeze. Then freeze completely.
To serve, scoop a portion of ice-cream into a bowl and serve with the shortbread, fresh strawberries and fresh mint leaves.
Siobhan Marks wants to learn how to make salsa at home. She reckons Mexico in Wellington has some of the best salsa she’s tasted and asked for the recipe.
“It has just the right amount of spicy kick and zesty tang. I’d love to recreate it at home.”
We contacted the restaurant, which happily shared the recipe.
Makes 1 litre
3 x 375g tins whole peeled tomatoes
40g long red chilies
600g red capsicum
350g brown onion
100ml lime juice
Chop the red chilies, capsicum, onion and garlic. Put all the ingredients in a large pot and blend well with stick blender. Put the pot on to high heat and bring to boil. Reduce heat and cook out mixture until it starts to thicken. Keep stirring the salsa evenly and progressively so it does not stick. When the salsa has reduced enough (Almost by half) and the flavour has intensified remove from heat. Mixture should still be a little loose but with a reasonable amount of body. Check seasoning, you might want to add more salt or lime juice depending on your palate preference. Serve with warmed crunchy tortillas or tortilla chips.
Peanut butter cookie fan? Today is your day. Celebrate National Peanut Butter Cookie day with one of our favorite recipes from the Buttery in Santa Cruz. The Buttery’s take on peanut butter cookies — massive enough that you almost need two hands to hold them — is at once rich, sweet and perfectly crumbly. Each cookie is garnished with a coating of dry-roasted peanuts around the edge. It’s like a little bit of peanut butter heaven with every bite. Enjoy!
THE BUTTERY’S PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES
Total time: 1 hour, plus chilling time for the dough. Makes 8 to 10 large cookies
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon baker’s sugar
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups (6.4 ounces) pastry flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup dry-roasted peanuts
1. In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, cream the butter over medium speed just until creamy. Add the sugars to the butter and cream together, careful not to over-mix. Scrape down the bowl to make sure the sugars and butter are evenly combined.
2. Beat in the egg just until incorporated, then beat in the peanut butter, scraping down the bowl again after mixing.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.
4. Add the flour mixture to the mixing bowl, beating until smooth and the flour is evenly incorporated. Scrape down the bowl, making sure the ingredients are combined and smooth.
5. Remove the dough from the bowl and form it into a rough log, approximately 2 1/2 inches thick. Place the dough in a sheet of parchment paper and roll the dough in the paper so it is smooth and a consistent 2 1/2-inches thick throughout the log. The log will be about 9 inches long.
6. Place the peanuts in a rimmed cookie sheet and gently roll the dough in the peanuts to coat on all sides. The peanuts should stick to the log; if they don’t, brush the roll with a beaten egg, then roll it in the peanuts so they stick. Wrap the finished log in parchment paper or plastic wrap and refrigerate until well-chilled, at least 2 hours, up to overnight.
7. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Slice the cookies into 1-inch-thick slices and place on parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing them at least 3 inches apart, as the cookies will spread while they bake. Bake the cookies until set and browned around the edges, about 20 minutes, rotating the baking sheet halfway through baking for even coloring. Cool the cookies, still on the baking sheet, on a rack until set and cool enough to handle.
Each of 10 cookies: 406 calories; 9 grams protein; 45 grams carbohydrates; 5 grams fiber; 24 grams fat; 8 grams saturated fat; 43 mg cholesterol; 380 mg sodium; 26 grams sugar.
The 21st FIFA World Cup starts Thursday, with host country Russia kicking off soccer’s quadrennial party against Saudi Arabia. To help you celebrate, we’ve gathered recipes for every country in the 32-team field, including mighty Brazil (210.87 million people) and charming underdog Iceland (335,000). Don’t worry, we’ve kept the sports analogies to a minimum.
Hungry for soccer analysis? Be sure to sign up for The Post’s World Cup newsletter.
GROUP A: Russia, Egypt, Uruguay, Saudi Arabia
Salad Olivier, a potato salad with carrots, peas, pickles, hard-cooked eggs and chunks of ham or chicken, is practically mandatory eating at any celebratory table in Russia. Once you try this delightful mix, with a tangy dressing of mayonnaise and sour cream, you’ll understand why.
Dukkah is a crunchy, aromatic spice and nut blend from Egypt; here, it’s deployed two ways in a Roasted Carrot, Green Bean and Coconut Salad — some is mixed into a simple dressing of oil and white wine vinegar, while the rest is scattered on top of the finished dish. You can buy dukkah at spice shops, online or some grocery stores such as Trader Joe’s. It is, of course, also easy to make your own — we used a bit from a big batch of our hazelnut-studded version that’s stashed in our refrigerator.
In the Washington area, you may have encountered the chivito, a meaty sandwich from Uruguay, at the now-closed Fast Gourmet (or perhaps at its replacement, Panino Gourmet). Make your own chivito with thin slices of Chipotle Honey-Marinated Steak, plus ham, eggs, mozzarella, tomatoes, olives and perhaps mushrooms and bacon.
Saudi Arabia is one of the top 10 date-producing countries in the world. Give those naturally sweet fruit a spin in some Whole-Wheat Date Bars (Ma’roota) — they make a nice breakfast or snack and feature an aromatic, fennel and anise seed infused dough.
GROUP B: Spain, Morocco, Iran, Portugal
Stuffed Cremini Mushrooms make a mighty fine small bite from Spain — they’re filled with a mix of Mahón cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh thyme, paprika and bread crumbs.
Did you know you can make bread in less time than it takes to watch the Morocco vs. Iran match? It’s true! This Pain Petri (Anise-Flavored Challah With Sesame Seeds) is ready in an hour and makes a big batch, which means you’ll have plenty for toasting or turning into sweet or savory French toast.
This Olive, Pomegranate and Walnut Dip (Zeytoon Parvardeh) comes from northern Iran. It’s a savory, salty, fruity mix that goes well on flatbread, crackers or baguette slices.
Get pumped up with this Amped-Up Red Pepper Paste (Massa de Pimentao) from Portugal. It has a hefty amount of sweet and smoked paprika, plus dry red wine, garlic, bay leaves and tomato paste, all balanced with a little acidity from lemon juice and a shot of earthiness from cilantro. Use it as a spread with cheese, stir it into tomato sauce or spread over chicken, pork, fish or potatoes before roasting.
GROUP C: France, Denmark, Australia, Peru
Rise and shine for Saturday’s 6 a.m. Eastern France vs. Australia match with this perfect Sunday Brunch Omelet from Washington’s Le Diplomate restaurant. It’s soft on the outside and creamy within.
The slightly bitter cocktail The 866 comes from Ruby, a cocktail bar in Copenhagen, Denmark. It’s a complex, salty-tangy mix of aquavit, grapefruit juice and Campari.
This chewy Warm Blondie Pudding Cake was adapted by Nigella Lawson from a 2016 contestant on “MasterChef Australia.” It’s squidgy in the best of ways and is splendid served with fresh fruit and a little crème fraîche.
Mushroom Ceviche from Peru makes for a simple, refreshing, meatless appetizer. Serve it with bread or roasted potatoes to soak up the marinade.
GROUP D: Argentina, Croatia, Iceland, Nigeria
Alfajores — tender sandwich cookies with a filling of dulce de leche — are a popular cookie in Argentina (and other South American countries). This recipe adds a little ground almond to the butter cookie for extra crispness. Gooooooool.
Time for another drink! Try the Aviation Cocktail, featuring an ingredient with roots in Croatia — this unique tipple is a blend of gin, lemon juice and maraschino liqueur, a spirit made from Marasca cherries, originating from the Dalmatia region of Croatia.
Seafood is a major source of food in Iceland, so we opt for this Dilled Potato Salad With Smoked Trout. If it makes you want to clap and chant in unison in an incredible display that’s simultaneously beautiful and incredibly intimidating, we’d understand.
If you’ve not had soumbala, or ground locust bean, now’s an excellent time to seek some out, so you can make food historian Michael Twitty’s African Soul Fried Rice. The spice has a lovely smoky and pungent flavor and is native to West and Central Africa; in Nigeria, it’s known as dadawa.
GROUP E: Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland, Costa Rica
Danila’s Brazilian-Style Beans, flavored simply with garlic and bay leaves, are a tribute to the ubiquitous bean dishes found throughout Brazil.
It’s pretty great of FIFA to coordinate the World Cup with our sour cherry season, don’t you think? Take a cue from Serbia and make this Tart Serbian-Style Cherry Pie (Pita sa visnjama), featuring flaky layers of phyllo dough and a tangy boost from sour cream.
Herby Mushroom and Swiss Crepes are proof that crepes can be quick, savory and satisfying. These are filled with a clever mix of mushrooms, herbs and the irresistible buttery cheese from Switzerland, Emmenthaler.
For a taste of Costa Rica, try a refreshing Pineapple Papaya Frosty. If you are so inclined, spike it with tequila, rum or sparkling wine.
GROUP F: Germany, Mexico, Sweden, South Korea
Will Mesut Özil and Thomas Müller guide Die Mannschaft (the Germannational team) to another championship? There’s no guarantee, but if you have an onion, a bottle of beer and good sausages, then we can at least promise you’ll have Bratwurst Cooked the Right Way. (If you don’t have access to a grill, you can get similar results by cooking your brats in a cast-iron skillet — cook the onions first, then add the brats and beer; cook, covered, for about 5 minutes on medium heat, turning occasionally. Uncover, increase the heat to medium-high and cook, turning the brats frequently until the beer evaporates and the brats are cooked through and nicely browned.)
Cookbook author and public television host Pati Jinich sampled this RawTomatillo and Chipotle Salsa Verde in the small town of Valle de Bravo, Mexico. It strikes the right balance between tart and spicy, thanks to those tomatillos and chipotles en adobo. An optional but highly recommended garnish of diced avocado and some queso fresco lend a creamy texture and pops of saltiness.
These Crispy Toffee Cookies are built around a Swedish candy bar called Daim, which, fortunately for you, has two close relatives (Skor and Heath) in the States.
Steamed Tofu With Sauteed Kimchi, a delightful marriage of soft, bland tofu with crunchy, funky kimchi, is a popular Korean drinking snack.
GROUP G: Belgium, England, Panama, Tunisia
Belgium makes us think of many things, foodwise — mussels, beer, chocolate, waffles. But here’s another thing you should know about: Belgian-Style Crepes. A bottle of beer in the batter acts as a leavener and contributes a slightly bitter flavor.
A batch of British Scones is perfect for afternoon tea or breakfast while cheering on England. Serve with clotted cream and jam, then ponder making Cucumber Sandwiches for your second cuppa.
Known as patacones in Panama, twice fried green plantains (Tostones) are tasty with merely a generous sprinkling of salt, but they also make excellent vehicles for salsas or other dips.
This flavorful Roasted Pepper and Tomato Salad With Tuna and Black Olives is a classic dish in Tunisia. Its source of zip is the spicy pepper paste harissa; you can make your own or find it in well-stocked grocery stores.
GROUP H: Colombia, Poland, Senegal, Japan
Pay homage to the tropical fruits found in Colombia with this Banana Tart With Guava Glaze, featuring a heavenly balance of sweet and sour.
Fusilli With Polish Sausage, Potatoes and Caramelized Onions takes the flavors of the Polish classic, pierogi, and adds sausage, horseradish and whole-grain mustard. We appreciate the ease of a pasta dish, but if you’re having friends over to watch a game (say, the Sunday, June 24, match when Poland faces off against Colombia) you couldconsider having a pierogi party — and enlisting your friends to help fill and fold bundles of dough. Our Family-Style Pierogi is just the ticket.
This version of Senegalese Chicken Yassa, a traditional dish from southern Senegal, is enriched with pimento-stuffed olives, carrots and mustard.
Honestly we’re shocked it took us this long to make the very obvious suggestion of meatballs. (Because soccer balls are basically giant meatballs!) For Japan, go with these easy Chicken Meatballs (Tsukune) — the recipe makes just enough for two servings, so you might also consider Baked Sweet Potatoes With Yuzu Butter. You can make a joke about the potatoes resembling footballs and discuss the contention that occasionally arises when using the terms “soccer” and “football.”