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Burns Night. The history, and recipes for a feast
Òlamaid deoch-slàinte! An Ode to Single Malt
On the 25th of January there is a tradition to have a Burns Night Supper in honour of the “Bard” Robert Burns, Scotland's favourite son, the Ploughman Poet. The menu is usually quite specific and includes Haggis, a definite acquired taste, but that is another article altogether. During the course of the night toasts are made in his honour with “a wee dram” of
W H I S K Y. Please note the spelling. It is a huge insult to a Scotsman or woman if you put an “E” before the “Y”. That is Irish or American and certainly not the aqua vitae that is produced in Scotland.
The best Scotch Whiskies are Single Malt. Malt" indicates that the whisky is distilled from a "malted" grain. More than one type of grain can be malted; barley, rye and wheat, however, in the case of single malt Scotch, barley is always the only grain used. A single malt Scotch must be distilled in Scotland and matured in oak casks in Scotland for a minimum of three years , although most single malts are aged longer.
Until 2009 a “blended” whisky contained both barley and a non-barley grained alcohol. A "blended malt Scotch whisky" is a mixture of single malt Scotch whiskies from different distilleries, not a mixture of malted barley whisky and non-barley whisky; those are called “blended scotch whisky” without the word “malt”.
The age on the bottle represents the number of years the whisky aged in the cask. Very few are produced from a single cask and therefore it is counted from the youngest vintage in the cask.
There are six regions that produce distinctly different flavours, aromas, and finishes. They are Highlands, Island, Speyside, Islay, L0wland and Campbeltown. The differences come from the water and the land just as with grapes.
Here are a few of my favourite Whiskies.
Glenfiddich 15 Year Old Solera Reserve- Speyside $32.00
The Glenfiddich Solera system is unique amongst Scotch whisky distillers. Fifteen-year-old Glenfiddich from three types of casks – traditional American bourbon, Spanish sherry and new oak – is married in a large Solera vat, made of Oregon pine. The vat is always kept at least half full, ensuring a consistent quality of whisky is maintained whenever it is topped up. A full and fruity nose, with delicate honey and vanilla notes. The taste is exceptionally smooth, with a deep flavour that reveals fruit, gentle spice and a touch of oak.
Glenmorangie 18 Year Old- Highland $127.00
An attractive deep gold colour, warm and enticing. The bouquet is very full, round and perfumed with nutty, caramel and vanilla overtones. Exceptionally smooth, 'silky' and round. Fine, fully flavoured and subtle with a long, consistent aftertaste, it is delivered with great intensity and depth.
Laphroaig Quarter Cask-Island $55.00
Full sparkling gold. A nose of smoky burning peat, hints of coconut and banana.Full bodied.
Deep, complex and smoky yet offers and surprises the palate with a gentle sweetness. Really long finish of smoke and spice.
Aberlour 15- Speyside $55.00
Floral perfume, spicy orange and marmalade. Rich and vanilla, malty, woody sweetness with apricot flavours, toffee and loads of obvious sherry sweetness, cake icing. Malty, mellow, with a certain spiciness and a touch of mint.
Ardbeg Corryvreckan- Islay $90.00
Floral, citrus, orange, orange peel, dried fruits, currants, vanilla, peaty, woody, maritime, sea spray, salt air. Dark fruits, dark chocolate, dry, brut, clover, malt, oak, cedar, peat, smoky, maritime, savory. It finishes with spicy, peppery, oak, toffee, almond, butter, briny, smoke, smooth, long.
Auchentoshan 16 year old, Limited Edition- Lowland $90.00
Soft essence of vanilla, touch of honeyed caramel, some bourbon-like oak. Perfectly smooth, woody, with hints of creamy vanilla, and a hint of tangerine a rich finish with medium length, vanilla, citrus and almond, some caramel.
Go here for the recipes to make your own traditional Burns Supper. There's even a vegetarian version; https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/occasions/burns_night
NORMAN SCHMIDT DIABETES Insulin is a major issue for many individuals. While insulin is a natural part of a healthy system, when the body isn’t working perfectly then insulin can become a problem that results in pre-diabetes, diabetes, and weight loss, among many other issues. The rate of diabetes could easily become an epidemic that overwhelms the medical industry, especially as some numbers predict the rate of cases doubling from 190 million to 380 million over the next two and a half decades . The good news is that in most cases insulin production in the body, and the body’s ability to properly handle it, is most often a dietary issue. This means that a proper eating plan that is carefully followed can be enough for most people to overcome their insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is a warning flag for diabetes and can make weight loss extremely difficult even for individuals who shouldn’t have a problem dropping pounds. This is where the Insulin Resistance Die
Corn, also known as maize or our good old ( Bhutta/Makkai/Challi ) in Hindi, ‘ Mokka Jonnalu ‘ in Telugu, ‘ Makkacholam ‘ in Tamil, ‘ Cholam ‘ in Malayalam, ‘ Musukina Jol a’ in Kannada, ‘ Makkai ‘ in Gujarati, ‘ Makai ‘ in Marathi and Punjabi and ‘ Butta ‘ in Bengali. Corn is a large grain plant which is said to have originated in Mexico and Central America. Though viewed as a vegetable, it is actually a food grain. The leafy stalk of the plant produces ears, which contain the grains known as kernels. For every kernel on the cob, there is a strand of silk. The white and yellow kernels are most popular, but today, corn is available in red, brown, blue and purple also. The white and yellow hybrids are known as butter and sugar corn which contain both kinds of kernels. This cereal is known for its pleasant taste and its versatility. Baby corn is available in cans or jars in the supermarkets and is used in Asian cooking. This grain is generally available in summer and can be
This Strawberry Cream Pie. Full of fresh strawberries and cream cheese, it gets an additional boost of flavor from instant pudding mix! Serve this at your next get-together, and watch it disappear! Strawberry Cream Pie 1 (9-inch) graham cracker pie crust (pre made is okay) 1 container (16 oz.) fresh (or frozen) strawberries, washed and hulled 4 tbsp. sugar 4 oz. (half of an 8 oz. pkg.) cream cheese, softened 1 pkg. (3.4 oz.) vanilla flavor instant pudding mix 1 pkg. (3.4 oz.) strawberry creme instant pudding mix 2 cups whipped cream or whipped topping, divided Additional sliced strawberries for garnish Place the 16 oz. of fresh strawberries in a food processor with the sugar. Cover and pulse a few times until the berries are finely chopped. Add the cream cheese and pulse until blended. You may need to scrape down the sides. Place the mixture in a large bowl. Add both of the dry instant pudding mixes to the bowl and stir until thoroughly combined. Gently fold in 1½ cups of the C