American Cookbook #19 – Rice

American-Cookbook2 Black Beans and Rice

Makes 10 servings

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes

Shopping List:

  • 5 ml or 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 140 gr or ¾ cup uncooked white rice
  • 355 ml or 1½ cups low sodium, low fat vegetable broth
  • 2 gr or 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ gr or ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 840 gr or 3½ cups canned black beans, drained

rijst02TO MAKE:

  1. In a stockpot over medium-high heat, heat the oil.
  2. Add the onion and garlic and sautee for 4 minutes.
  3. Add the rice and sautee for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the vegetable broth, bring to a boil, cover and lower the heat and cook for 20 minutes.
  5. Add the spices and black beans.

Note: Easy to re-heat leftovers.


Amount Per Serving 1 serving is a side-dish, 2 servings is a meal,
Calories: 140
Total Fat: 0.9g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Sodium: 354mg
Total Carbohydrates: 27.1g
Dietary Fiber: 6.2g
Protein: 6.3g

Gastric Bypass, Gastric Sleeve and Lap-band [WLS] persons can eat two servings max !

PDF of this recipe: 20151126-AC-19-Black-Beans+Rice


I know the title is hard to pronounce. Try iSy… :wink:

After the opening of the car tunnel last July, a new milestone for IJzijde is opening today, a pedestrian and bicycle tunnel from downtown Amsterdam below Central Station towards the ferries. The tunnel has the largest hand-painted tile tableau of Netherlands! It’s 3 meters high, 110 meters long and 10 meters wide.

Charles Mann, of Project IJsei, is happy: “The tunnel is for cyclists and pedestrians a direct and comfortable connection between the city and the IJ, so the busy routes are relieved around the station.” The tunnel is not only practical but also beautiful , he says. “There is a very clear distinction between the pedestrian and cyclists part. They are as it were, two hooks which engage in one another. And the tableau is beautiful.”

With more than 77,000 tiles, this is the largest hand-painted tableau of the country, designed by Irma Boom, and produced, one-by-one by Koninklijke Tichelaar, Makkum. Charles: “People who have seen the tableau – for example, during National Construction Day or during a tour – are always very enthusiastic. The tableau is a variation on a representation of a warship and a herring fleet. The original seascape was made by Cornelis Bouwmeester and dates from the first quarter of the 18th century.

Click on a photo for a broader view.

American Cookbook #18 – Pork

American-Cookbook2 Slow Cooker Pork Cacciatore

Makes 4 servings

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 8 hours 30 minutes

Shopping List:

  • 30 ml or 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 4 boneless pork chops
  • 830 ml or 1 (28 ounce) jar pasta sauce
  • 830 ml or 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and sliced into strips
  • 225 gr or 1 (8 ounce) package fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 gr or 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ gr or ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • 120 ml or ½ cup dry white wine
  • 4 slices mozzarella cheese

karbonade-largeTO MAKE:

  1. In a large skillet, brown chops over medium-high heat.
  2. Transfer to slow cooker.
  3. In the same pan, cook onion in oil over medium heat until browned.
  4. Stir in mushrooms and bell pepper, and cook until these vegetables are soft.
  5. Mix in pasta sauce, diced tomatoes, and white wine.
  6. Season with Italian seasoning, basil, and garlic.
  7. Pour over pork chops in slow cooker.
  8. Cook on Low for 7 to 8 hours.
  9. To serve, place a slice of cheese over each chop, and cover with sauce.

Note: Try using a liner in your slow cooker for easier cleanup.


Amount Per Serving
Calories: 614
Total Fat: 31g
Cholesterol: 82mg
Sodium: 1485mg
Total Carbohydrates: 41.8g
Dietary Fiber: 8.4g
Protein: 34.5g

Gastric Bypass, Gastric Sleeve and Lap-band [WLS] persons can eat only half a serving max !

PDF of this recipe: 20151119-AC-18-Slow-Cooker-Pork-Cacciatore

American Cookbook #17 – Hen

American-Cookbook2 Cornish Game Hens with Garlic and Rosemary

Makes 4 servings

Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 60 minutes

Shopping List:

  • 4 Cornish game hens
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1 lemon, quartered
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 45 ml or 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 24 cloves garlic
  • 85 ml or ⅓ cup white wine
  • 85 ml or ⅓ cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary, for garnish
  • cornstarch (optional)

game-henTO MAKE:

  1. Preheat oven to 230° C or 450 degrees F.
  2. Rub hens with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.
  3. Lightly season hens with salt and pepper.
  4. Place 1 lemon wedge and 1 sprig rosemary in cavity of each hen.
  5. Arrange in a large, heavy roasting pan, and arrange garlic cloves around hens.
  6. Roast in preheated oven for 25 minutes.
  7. Reduce oven temperature to 175° C or 350 degrees F.
  8. In a mixing bowl, whisk together wine, chicken broth, and remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Pour over hens.
  9. Continue roasting about 25 minutes longer, or until hens are golden brown and juices run clear.
  10. Baste with pan juices every 10 minutes.
  11. Transfer hens to a platter, pouring any cavity juices into the roasting pan.
  12. Add a little cornstarch (optional) to thicken it up.
  13. Tent hens with aluminum foil to keep warm.
  14. Transfer pan juices and garlic cloves to a medium saucepan and boil until liquids reduce to a sauce consistency, about 6 minutes.
  15. Cut hens in half lengthwise and arrange on plates.
  16. Spoon sauce and garlic around hens.
  17. Garnish with rosemary sprigs, and serve.

Note 1: Serve with sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, green beans, mushrooms and cranberries.

Note 2: Instead of game hens use roaster chicken.


Amount Per Serving
Calories: 814
Total Fat: 57.5g
Cholesterol: 340mg
Sodium: 1383mg
Total Carbohydrates: 9.7g
Dietary Fiber: 1.8g
Protein: 59.4g

Gastric Bypass, Gastric Sleeve and Lap-band [WLS] persons can eat only half a serving max !

PDF of this recipe: 20151112-AC-17-Cornish-Game-Hens-Garlic-Rosemary

Classic Statues From A Galaxy Far Far Away…

As a variation on a theme, French artist Travis Durden has imagined a mashup of Star Wars characters and ancient Greek statuary. Based on forms he found in Paris’ Louvre Museum, Durden has digitally sculpted a series of five figures, each bearing the armor or facial likeness of a one of the film’s fictional personalities. From a cherub-style Yoda to a philosophical Stormtrooper, the faux-marble figures offer a seamless synthesis of contemporary culture and classical sculpture.

An Early Birthday Gift…

I’ve still got 49 days to go, before I turn 60, but my birthday gift to myself arrived today. It was love at first sight when I saw it hanging in Museum Jan van der Togt in Amstelveen, during the opening of the Retrospective of Jan van Breda‘s work as a photographer. There was another one there too called ‘Amstel Hotel’ with Willink-like skies.

Then and now it still looks like a fine oil painting, in which Jan has put all his craft to get it in one shot. Most people know this view from when they arrive in Amsterdam, traveling by train from Amersfoort or Utrecht. Jan calls this masterpiece “Homecoming”, and to me it is homecoming too.

And the best thing is of course, when the clouds are gray, I’ve still a sunny view on Amsterdam.

American Cookbook #16 – Squash

American-Cookbook2Curried Butternut Squash and Pear Soup

Makes 8 servings

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 90 minutes

Shopping List:

  • 900 gr or 1 (2 pound) butternut squash
  • 45 gr or 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 gr or 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger root
  • 6 gr or 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 6 gr or 1 teaspoon salt
  • 950 ml or 4 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 2 firm ripe Bartlett or Anjou pears, peeled, cored, and cut into 2½ cm or 1 inch dice
  • 120 ml or ½ cup half and half (optional)

butternut-squash2TO MAKE:

  1. Preheat an oven to 190° C or 375 degrees F.
  2. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Cut squash in half lengthwise, discard seeds and membrane.
  4. Place squash halves, cut sides down, on the prepared baking sheet.
  5. Roast in preheated oven until very soft, about 45 minutes.
  6. Scoop the pulp from the peel, and reserve.
  7. Melt butter in a large soup pot over medium heat.
  8. Stir in the onion, garlic, ginger, curry powder, and salt.
  9. Cook and stir until the onion is soft, about 10 minutes.
  10. Pour the chicken broth into the pot, and bring to a boil.
  11. Stir in the pears and the reserved squash, and simmer until the pears are very soft, about 30 minutes.
  12. Pour the soup into a blender, filling the pitcher no more than halfway full.
  13. Hold down the lid of the blender with a folded kitchen towel, and carefully start the blender.
  14. Puree in batches until smooth.
  15. Return the soup to the pot, stir in the (optional) half and half, and reheat.
  16. Serve.

Note: Substitute the pears for a can of coconut milk, and/or two parsnips.


Amount Per Serving
Calories: 167
Total Fat: 6.6g
Cholesterol: 20mg
Sodium: 786mg
Total Carbohydrates: 27.5g
Dietary Fiber: 6.6g
Protein: 3g

Gastric Bypass, Gastric Sleeve and Lap-band [WLS] persons can eat a serving max !

PDF of this recipe: 20151105-AC-16-Curried-Butternut-Squash-Pear-Soup