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Old 03-17-2008, 10:12 AM   #1
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ISO Interesting and/or new ingredient inspiration

What interesting or new ingredients have you recently bought or cooked with? I submitte a post a few weeks ago about quinoa and since then I have devised quite an asortment of salad recipes & even hubbie loves it which surprised him. I want to discover some new things to cook with - can you please give me inspiration? Thank you

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Old 03-17-2008, 10:46 AM   #2
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Barley. I know that it's not an "interesting ingredient" per se, but it's something that I've always liked... but I've never been able to buy in the country I live in. I recently found some for sale in a small shop surprisingly near my apartment, and have been using it a lot-- It's a nice, healthy grain and you can really do a lot with it.
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Old 03-17-2008, 10:53 AM   #3
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I've been on a radish and fennel kick.
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Old 03-17-2008, 12:08 PM   #4
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ground cardamom, cardamom roots, cardamom pods. They add great flavor to Asian rice dishes. Steaming the rice with cardamom pods and lemon grass is really good. Cardamom is really expensive where I live though, hopefully it isn't for you. In fact, if anyone out there knows where to get a good deal on it send me a PM or post it somewhere.
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Old 03-17-2008, 12:42 PM   #5
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chinese ground bean sauce..thats the newest addition to my pantry..

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Cardamom is really expensive where I live though, hopefully it isn't for you. In fact, if anyone out there knows where to get a good deal on it send me a PM or post it somewhere.
try an indian grocery store..

btw, what is cardamom root ?
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:00 PM   #6
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I would really like to investigate quinoa - thanks for the reminder!

My mind is kind of a blank right now and all I can think of is, and it's not an ingredient, but a combination of ingredients. I LOVE the combination soy sauce, cilantro, and lime. I use this combination in Vietnamese Summer Rolls, buckwheat/soba noodles, flank steak marinade, chicken, pork tenderloin...
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:08 PM   #7
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Whole-wheat couscous.

I like couscous, but the husband has never been a fan - thinks it's tasteless & dry - but for whatever reason he really liked the whole-wheat version. It definitely has a somewhat "nutty" taste, although I didn't see any difference in texture or moisture. But - whatever makes him happy - lol!! (Plus, the whole wheat is healthier.)
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:09 PM   #8
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Jicama is one of my favorite ingredients that most people, outside of here of course, have almost never heard of. I love using it and having people ask what it is.
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:30 PM   #9
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Jicama is one of my favorite ingredients that most people, outside of here of course, have almost never heard of. I love using it and having people ask what it is.
You mean, you have to tell the people at the checkouts what price code to look up, too?
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:32 PM   #10
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You mean, you have to tell the people at the checkouts what price code to look up, too?
Every time. I do not think they have known what it was even once.
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:45 PM   #11
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I love jicama, too. It's very common here since it's widely used in Mexican cooking. Mostly I use it raw and sliced into thin sticks in salads - I love the crunch! But my son likes to put it in Ramen noodle soup.
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Old 03-17-2008, 02:02 PM   #12
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I'm really interested....errr what is it??
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Old 03-17-2008, 02:12 PM   #13
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Jicama

It has a great crunch almost like a granny smith apple, but a little different. The flavor is mild, but refreshing.
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Old 03-17-2008, 02:27 PM   #14
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If you ever make Jicama Slaw, make sure you make it right before you serve it. Otherwise it will get watery.
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Old 03-17-2008, 05:58 PM   #15
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I had a jicama once and had to visit a chiropractor to get it fixed!
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Old 03-17-2008, 05:59 PM   #16
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I love jicama, too.

Another ingredient that I've come to appreciate is miniature celery. It almosts looks like parsley, but has a more concentrated flavor than regular celery and is easy to chop and add to soups and stews, etc. Of course it's not used for hors d'oerves.

We also like gai lan (sp?) which is a dark leafy green veggie (similar to a spinach) but is wonderful stir fried.

Black cumin seeds------these are fantastic on savoury breads, bread sticks, spread on pita bread and baked, spread on lavash and baked, etc.......
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Old 03-17-2008, 06:04 PM   #17
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btw, what is cardamom root ?
Sorry, didn't actually mean to put that one on the list.
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Old 03-17-2008, 06:27 PM   #18
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I love jicama, also. Rapini is something we enjoy, but find is difficult to find.
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Old 03-18-2008, 10:20 AM   #19
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Rapini (aka Broccoli Raab) is by far one of my FAVORITE vegetables. In fact, I have some seeds to sow soon from one of my favorite specialty seed purveyors ("Seeds of Italy" Seeds from Italy). They offer (& I've bought) several different varieties. Who even knew there WERE different varieties - lol!!

Luckily, the regular supermarkets around here regularly carry broccoli raab (the "Andy Boy" brand), & I buy it all the time. In fact, I have a big fresh crisp bunch in the fridge right now, & will be enjoying it for dinner tonight in this favorite recipe from "Eating Well" magazine "Chicken, Broccoli Raab, & Feta on Toast". Here's the link: Chicken, Broccoli Rabe & Feta on Toast - Eating Well
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Old 03-18-2008, 10:59 AM   #20
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Black or "forbidden" rice. Nice flavor, great texture. Not as chewy/crunchy as wild or brown rice.

Be careful--it will stain things dark purple.
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