Thursday, December 30, 2010

It’s a fitting feast for the holiday...

When your kids turn into teens and need to sleep late after a late night outing, especially at this end-of-the-year festive season, it’s time to transfer breakfast to a late lunch or even early dinner. Our teen friendly recipe for Barbecued Pork Tenderloin is the perfect compromise for everyone — including the cook in the family.
This recipe is so easy to do that your teen can take over as chef. Don't you love that for a change! This recipe offers up the barbecue smokiness that we all crave without the hassles of firing up a BBQ. It’s a fitting feast for the holiday, and everyone is happy.

Baked Pork Tenderloin Barbecue in Hoisin Sauce

2 Tsp cooking oil
1 Tsp salt
1 Tsp black pepper
1 kg. pork tenderloin
1 Tsp finely chopped ginger
2 Tsp Chinese rice wine
1/2 cup Hoisin sauce or barbecue sauce of choice.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
In a 12-inch skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Salt and pepper the tenderloin, and sear on all sides, about five minutes. Drizzle barbecue sauce over the meat. Remove the meat to a roasting pan lined with nonstick aluminum foil or plain aluminum foil coated with cooking-oil spray.
Roast for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven, and let stand for 10 minutes before slicing the pork. Serve with vegetables and additional sauce, if desired.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Your holly needs a spouse to produce baby berries...

We have just returned from a long vacation to China, Malaysia and Singapore and delighted to receive a spray of holly leaves as a Christmas gift from a friend who has a tree in her garden. Not only does it takes its place as part of the floral centre-piece at the table, it offers a beautiful study of nature.Take a simple leaf and study its shape, noting not only it has always been used in stencils and sprayed on shop windows as part of a traditional Christmas decoration, the serrations on the leaves require careful handling. They are not just jagged edge, but each little spine point towards the tip of the serrations can produce a painful prick to the fingers. Nature has a special purpose in arranging them, thus they defy the approach of predatory insects. Besides, the foliage of both evergreen and deciduous holly plants can provide cover for various small mammals and birds in the garden.During storms, birds often take refuge in hollies which provide shelter and protection from predators by the spiny leaves. Holly is considered a dioecious plant, meaning that there are male and female plants. In order for your holly to produce berries , it is necessary to have both a male and female plant next to each other for pollination to occur. Those bright red holly berries together with their dark, spiky, green leaves are often used to adorn wreaths for traditional Christmas decorations. Moreover, this plant with stiff, prickly foliage, can be planted in hedgerows to create a living fence and are favoured amongst homeowners to deter trespassing or access to buildings and windows. Legend also says that a holly's sharp leaves protect against evil spirits and provide shelter to fairies. With this holly, my family and I would like to wish you and your loved ones A Merry Christmas and A Prosperous New Year.