The life and times of a home schooling mom of se7en + 1.

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Se7en + 1 Go Around the World in a CookBook…

May 24th, 2012 · 20 Comments

It is no secret that we love and adore traveling – anywhere and anytime. Local and exotic outings are accepted with glee. Our kids have no problem with twenty hour car trips; Endless plane trips or slogging it out on foot; They have slept under stars and downy duvets; In cottages the size of Buckingham Palace and shacks the size of a small carpet. The world is quite literally our oyster and if an opportunity arises we grab it with both hands!!!


Meanwhile, we are fairly avid Masterchef South Africa fans and last week the chef’s challenge was to cook meals from around the world. We decided that since we haven’t been anywhere for a couple of months, we would have a moment of virtual travel. So we dashed to the library and we were off on went on a culinary world tour using this fabulous book:

We traveled far and wide stopping off at some key destinations… our only proviso was that it is very wintry over here right now so we chose lots of wintry meals… think comfort food, think steamy casseroles and you will be with us!!!

  1. Bobotie from Africa: There is no place like home and we needed a place to start!!! We all love bootie and cook at least twice a month already. And is a great meal to serve for visitors.
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  3. Irish Stew from Ireland (!): The weather has definitely gotten colder over here and stew seemed like a very good idea for filling up tummies!!! A totally easy recipe: layers of lamb and onions alternated with slices of potatoes… topped with potatoes and left in the oven while you read through a pile of books…
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  5. Raclette from Switzerland: We went on a photographic tour of the Alps and then settled on melted cheese on baked potatoes for lunch… raceltte is a traditional Swiss dish by melting a block of cheese next to an open fire and then eaten with potatoes, pickled onions and gherkins… Grilled cheesy potatoes were a nice change from our usual lunch, everyone was happy with that!!!
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  7. Hungarian Goulash: Why, oh why haven’t we made Hungarian Goulash before? Totally yummy!!! Terribly delicious, a rich beef stew topped with dumplings. Where have we been, the dumplings made it and were a totally new idea for us!!!
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  9. Beef Stroganoff from Russia: This happens to be the father person’s favorite dish… and who can blame him!!! The kids were thrilled to present this to him for dinner!!!
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  11. Bhuna Gosht from India: We love and adore any dish from India. Curry and all the yummy side dishes, the colors and the aromas, that go with them… And anything excuse for our celebrity chef to toss some spices into the pestle and mortar… because after two years of zesting… this is the year to master the pestle and mortar…
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  13. Moussaka from Greece: I confess that whenever we make moussaka it vanishes in seconds, my kids love and adore it… totally. It comes out of the oven and it barely leaves the baking dish before it is gone. I have the feeling that meals should be savored – even a little bit!!! So I never make moussaka. When my guys saw the recipe there was no holding them back – trouble is they now know how to make it!!! It is basically a minced meat sauce, topped with a layer of aubergine slices (prepare and fry them first) and then topped some more with a white sauce… sprinkled with a little cheese and baked in the oven. Stunning meal, with an interesting vegetable to try!!!
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    And the Se7en + 1th Recipe:

  15. Refried Beans from Latin America: And finally something quick and easy from South America. Whenever we have tried refried beans it has been at someone else’s house. Had I known how easy they are to make we would have been making them for years. Anyway my kids have added this to the lunch menu and once or twice a week one of them will sneak off before lunch and then present lunch with a flourish of Ta Da!!! It is really cheap: chopped onion and garlic with a can of mixed beans, heated, stirred about and topped with melted cheese. That quick and that easy!!!



Oh the joy of trying new recipes is that they often become firm favorites on our menu… and we end up wondering how we lived without them!!! It is no secret that we love Usborne books, and their cookbooks, which are brilliant for kids and honestly, since the recipes are so quick and easy they are fabulous for grown-ups too. All the recipes have a “finished” photograph – something to aim for (!) and very easy to read and follow directions. Our kids were able to tackle these recipes easily, and when they cook new flavors they are so willing to try those new flavors!!! Like most Usborne books it has a corresponding quick-links page where you can find snippets about the countries you visit, food facts and printable recipes from within the book – how handy is that!!!

Usborne Books did not pay us in any way for this review and our opinions are, as usual, our own. We simply have to rave about this book because it is so very fabulous!!! Hope you are having a wonderful week!!!

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Tags: Cook Book Reviews · Geography · Monday Munchies · Se7en at School

20 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Rachel R. // May 24, 2012 at 7:28 am

    Oh MY GOODNESS!!! That all looks so delicious! I’m seriously wishing it was time to think about supper instead of bed. LOL

    You’re kids cooking has inspired me to let mine do a LOT more of the cooking in the family …. and you know, turns out that they are better cooks than their Momma!
    Rachel R.´s last blog post ..May 23: Books By Margaret Wise Brown

  • 2 Efi // May 24, 2012 at 7:45 am

    I’m so glad you’re cooking mousaka. You can also add potatoes and zucchini (again fried) for a change of taste and a more vegetables. My grandmother always added potatoes…
    Efi´s last blog post ..Fashion model 1

  • 3 se7en // May 24, 2012 at 9:35 am

    Hi Rachel R. It is amazing what our kids can do in the kitchen… I tell you I am join got be out of a job soon and I love cooking!!! so happy to inspire your youngsters!!! Hope you have a fabulous day!!!

  • 4 se7en // May 24, 2012 at 9:37 am

    Hi Elfi, My kids love Mousaka so much!!! And yes we pack it with vegetables!!! Thanks for stopping by and hope you have the most fantastic day!!!

  • 5 Cheryl // May 24, 2012 at 11:43 am

    Great idea to cook a meal from different countries. I can see us doing something similar to celebrate the Olympics.
    Cheryl´s last blog post ..Guess where we were today

  • 6 se7en // May 24, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    Hay Cheryl, Oh the Olympics are going to be so fabulous!!! I tell you food around the world really speaks to my kids hearts!!! We have glorious sunshine!!! Hope you have a great day!!!

  • 7 Sharlene // May 25, 2012 at 3:01 am

    I have this book as well and I never thought of doing an around the world trip with it. We have used it as a resource when studying different countries. I think we will need to try a “trip” this summer to add some excitement to life. Thanks for sharing your fun.

  • 8 se7en // May 25, 2012 at 9:24 am

    Hi Sharlene… We quite often virtually visit countries for school and the very first thing at the top of every list is: What do they eat there? I am guessing food is fundamental around here!!! Speedy round the world trips are so fun… I hope you have a great one… Not to mention enjoy the summer!!! Have a good day!!!

  • 9 Zoe // May 25, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Can I come for dinner, pretty please? 🙂
    Zoe´s last blog post ..Edible Books and MATHS!

  • 10 se7en // May 25, 2012 at 2:04 pm

    Oh anytime Zoe… we would so love you to visit… can you imagine how much we would have to talk about!!! Books, books, books!!! Hope you have a fabulous weekend!!!

  • 11 Anneli // May 25, 2012 at 6:52 pm

    An inspiring post as usual. This one was especially useful these days since we’ve often ran out of ideas for dinner lately. Thank you! We’re trying bobotie tomorrow night. Today it’s my nine-year-old who is the chef. Friday nights is his cooking night and he has allready decided warm sandwich cake.
    Anneli´s last blog post ..{just nu}

  • 12 Wendy Meijer // May 25, 2012 at 8:20 pm

    Wendy Meijer´s last blog post ..Mom Moment’s – May Carnival

  • 13 se7en // May 26, 2012 at 2:08 am

    Thank you Anneli, I really hope you enjoy your bootie!!! We have no idea what a sandwich cake is… and would love to know!!! Hope you have a fun weekend!!!

  • 14 se7en // May 26, 2012 at 2:09 am

    Hi Wendy, Yummy indeed!!! Hope you have a wonderful weekend!!!

  • 15 Anneli // May 26, 2012 at 11:42 pm

    sandwich cake is really easy to make:
    Use any kind of circle or halfcircle shaped soft bread.
    Fry 2 packages of bacon, 1 leeks,
    about 10 onions (all chopped)
    put in about 1 cup of creme fraiche ( Do you have that in south Africa? Any sour cream that is cookable vill do).
    Put it on the bread and then cover it with another bread and more filling and another bread… The fourth bread is the top.
    Put on coctailtomatoes and cover with cheese and put it all into the oven for about ten minutes.
    Anneli´s last blog post ..Shoppingeftermiddag och Bobotienight

  • 16 se7en // May 27, 2012 at 1:02 am

    Thank you Anneli for the recipe, it looks so fun!!! We love your Bobotie post, the photo looks perfect!!! Well done!!! I hope you enjoyed it!!!

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