Guess what? The generous folks at CSN Stores think that you, my readers, deserve a gift and I wholeheartedly agree. They’re giving away one $50 gift certificate which you’ll be able to spend any way your heart desires. With over 200 stores to choose from, your gift certificate will be easily spent. How about a bar stool or a new addition to your Le Creuset collection? It’s safe to say that CSN will have whatever you might want. This is what I’m eyeing right now. (Note: Your comments will be eligible for the giveaway until 8 pm October 24.)
I will use a random number generator to choose the winner. In your comment, just tell me what you would like to see more (or less) of here at Lemons and Anchovies. More desserts, savory dishes or appetizers? More or less travel posts? I’m all ears (or eyes, in this case). And to make the this giveaway a little sweeter, I’ll add to this giveaway by sending the winner a copy of one of my favorite food-related books.
While on a layover in London Heathrow several years ago, my husband picked up Mark Kurlansky’s Salt: A World History. Though not a food enthusiast, my husband is quite the history buff and this book turned out to be a very good read.
Mr. Kurlansky offers wonderful insight into the journey of salt, literally, from its status as a trading powerhouse in the early days of civilization to its much-humbled position in commerce today. You will learn how the inventive Chinese used bamboo piping to produce salt. Also, did you know that anchovy sauce (fish sauce) is not strictly an Asian invention? Anchovy sauce was a popular condiment for the 17th century English. And modern-day ketchup? The word is derived from Indonesian fish and soy sauce, kecap ican. Interspersed throughout the book are also 14th – 18 century recipes, from bacalla (salt cod) to sauerkraut and even caviar. This book has everything you will ever want to know about salt and will entertain you along the way.
I’ve gifted this book to several foodie friends and it’s been well-received. The only caveat is that I believe the American edition (I’ll be sending via Amazon) is slightly smaller (Cod or Oyster book pictured above) compared to the UK edition we purchased. This picture was taken in April when I originally planned a book review here but never got around to doing. I hope you will enjoy this book as much as I have.
And at the risk of sounding like a late-night infomercial…there’s more!
I can’t leave you without a sweet treat. I’ve been anxious for a pumpkin dessert for weeks and today’s cold, rainy conditions beckoned me to the kitchen to make these pumpkin crumb bars–perfect for fall. The crumbly crust is a nice contrast against the smooth pumpkin filling. Like many of the desserts I post here, this is not overly sweet. In fact, it’s very subtle. My last-minute addition of dried cranberries to the crumb topping added just the right sweet touch to these mellow bars. My husband has had four of these tonight with a tall glass of milk–I don’t think these will last long in my house.
Pumpkin Bars with Cranberry Crumb Topping
Adapted from here.
- 1 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
- 1 1/4 cups flour
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cup butter, at room temperature
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
For the Filling
- 15 oz can pumpkin puree
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (I used the substitution recommended in the link)
Preheat your oven to 375ºF. Combine the oats, flour, 3/4 cup brown sugar, chopped nuts, salt, baking soda and butter. Beat until the mixture is crumbly. Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the crumb mixture and press onto a buttered 13×9 baking pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
For the filling, beat all ingredients until smooth. Pour over the crust and sprinkle the reserved crumb mixture (stir in the dried cranberries if using). Bake for 25 minutes, cool and cut into bars.