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Imaginative travel - Recipes and music ideas greatly appreciated. ♥


I would be delighted if you could post some of your favourite recipes and ideas for music.

I have started to do meals themed on a country at the weekends. Last weekend we were in Portugal; next weekend we're dining in the UK! ♥
We will be making the flag of the chosen country as well! Music authentic to the country is part of the ambience, so we dined to Fado music on Saturday. Then we tell each other some history and a bit of culture - it's fabulous.

It is lots of fun and I am very excited about it. We cannot travel due to COVID-19 (and it needs a fair amount of money) but this is a way in which we can travel at least with our imagination.

Looking forward to any ideas you care to share!! ♥


Fun! This is exactly the sort of thing we all need, during this pandemic. What a great idea!

I'm an American but love all sorts of cultural food AND music. :D

One of my family's favorite dishes is Shepherd's pie. Very English/Irish/Scottish but also used through out many countries and is a favorite here in America too!
The great thing about this recipe is that you can make it however you want. Its ingredients can change each time you make it!

Here's a traditional recipe:
  • For the potato topping:
  • 2 pounds (907 grams) Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into wedges
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup (59 ml) milk, warm
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, to taste
  • For the filling:
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds (680 grams) ground lamb
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 7 ounces (207 grams) yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and grated or finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 3 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 pound (453 grams) carrots, peeled and diced small
  • 6 ounces (170 grams) parsnip, peeled and diced small
  • 1 cup (150 grams) frozen peas
  • 3/4 cup (177ml) Guinness
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup (236 ml) beef stock, low sodium
  1. For the potato topping:
  2. To a large pan add the potatoes, add cold water until the potatoes are covered and bring to a boil. Turn down to a low boil and cook for 20 minutes until tender.
  3. Drain the potatoes a colander, and add back to the pan. Mash until smooth and add the butter, milk, salt and pepper to taste. Mix well and set aside.
  4. For the filling:
  5. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  6. Add vegetable oil to a 10-inch cast iron skillet over medium-high heat and add ½ of the ground lamb. If the pan is too crowded, the meat will not brown, it will boil. Season with half of the salt and pepper, sauté until browned, breaking up the meat as it browns. Drain the meat keeping the fat in the pan and transfer to bowl or plate and repeat with the other ½ of the lamb, salt and pepper.
  7. Turn the heat down to medium and sauté the onions for about 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and thyme, cook for 3 minutes. Add tomato paste and mix well.
  8. Add the carrots, parsnip, peas, Guinness, Worcestershire sauce and beef stock. Simmer for 20-25 minutes until the liquid has reduced and the carrot and parsnips are tender. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed. Turn off the heat.
  9. Spread the potato mixture (or pipe with a piping bag for a decorative look) over the beef mixture. Make sure you make little peaks so they get a nice brown color in the oven.
  10. Place the pan onto a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 25 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
  11. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving.
Some music recommendations would be: the Dubliners, Enya, Mumford and Sons, The Beatles, Led Zepplin, Annie Lennox, Flogging Molly, Alasdair Fraser. :cool:


OMG that is so cool! Thank you very much!

Here is my Mum's recipe for coronation chicken.

Coronation chicken for 6-8

2 Young roasting chickens.
Water and a little wine to cover the carrot
A bouquet garni
3-4 peppercorns
Cream of curry sauce (see below)

Cooking the Chickens

Poach the chickens, with carrot, bouquet garni, salt and peppercorns, in water and a little wine, enough barely to cover, for about 40 mins or until tender. Allow to cool in liquid. Joint the birds, remove the bones with care. Prepare the sauce given below. Mix the chicken and the sauce together, arrange the dish, coat with extra sauce.

Ingredients for Cream of Curry Sauce.
1 tablespoon oil
2 oz. onion finely chopped
1 dessertspoon curry powder
1 good teaspoon tomato puree
1 wineglass red wine
3/4 wine glass water
a bay leaf
salt, sugar, a touch of pepper
a slice or two of lemon and a squeeze of lemon juice, probably more
1-2 tablespoons apricot puree
3/4 pint mayonnaise
2-3 tablespoons lightly whipped cream
A little extra whipped cream

Sauce Preparation
Heat the oil, add onion, cook gently 3-4 minutes, add curry powder.
Cook again 1-2 minutes. Add puree, wine, water and bay-leaf. Bring to
boil, add salt, sugar to taste, pepper, and the lemon and lemon juice.
Simmer with pan uncovered 5-10 minutes. Strain and cool. Add by
degrees to the mayonnaise with the apricot puree to taste, Adjust
seasoning, adding a little more lemon juice if necessary. Finish with
the whipped cream. Take a small amount of the sauce (enough to coat the
chicken) and mix with a little extra cream and seasoning.

History - Constance Spry, an English food writer and flower arranger, and Rosemary Hume, a chef, both principals of the Cordon Bleu Cookery School in London, are credited with the invention of coronation chicken. Preparing the food for the banquet of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953, Spry proposed the recipe of cold chicken, curry cream sauce and dressing that would later become known as coronation chicken.

Other dishes will be: toad in the hole, Chicken tikka and a cooked English breakfast. This with
CiraKelley's recipe is enough for the UK weekend. Yum, yum, yummy!

Music will be a variety me thinks.
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Ex-Team Member
Ooooh, I love this thread! Cultural foods are a wonderful way to imaginatively travel the globe!
I, myself, am quite of fan of Mexican food. There are so many delicioso recipes to try!
I'll share some of my favorites, that can be made as a meal, for anyone interested. :)

2 tablespoons canola oil, 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, One 28-ounce can enchilada or Mexican red sauce, 2 cups chicken broth, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
The Rest:
Canola oil, for frying
10 to 14 corn tortillas
Two 4-ounce cans diced green chilies
1 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup chopped black olives
3 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese
Cilantro, for garnish, sour cream, olives, up to you!
In a saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the canola oil and flour. Whisk together and allow to bubble for 1 minute. Pour in the red sauce, chicken broth, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer while you prepare the other ingredients.
For the meat:
While the sauce is simmering, brown the ground beef with the onions in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Drain the fat, add the salt and stir to combine. Turn off the heat and set aside.
For the rest:
In a small skillet over medium heat, heat some canola oil. Lightly fry the tortillas just until soft. Do not crisp. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Repeat until all the tortillas have been fried.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Spread 1/2 cup of the sauce in the bottom of a 9- by 13-inch baking dish. Next, one at a time, dip each tortilla into the sauce. Set the sauce-soaked tortilla on a plate. Place on some of the meat mixture, chilies, green onions and black olives. Top with a generous portion of grated Cheddar. Roll up the tortilla to contain the filling inside.
Place the tortilla seam side down in the baking dish. Repeat with the rest of the tortillas and pour the remaining sauce over the top. End with a generous sprinkling of cheese and any other bits of chiles, green onions or olives you have left over from the filling.
Bake the enchiladas for 20 minutes, or until bubbly. Sprinkle chopped cilantro over the top and serve.

-Basic Elote (corn side dish)
Ingredients: 4 corn cobs (or frozen corn, if needed), 100g butter , softened, zest 1 lime, 2 tsp chopped fresh chilli or 1 tsp chilli powder , mild or hot, depending how spicy you like it, lime wedges, to serve
Soak corn in cold water for 15 mins. Heat a griddle pan or barbecue and, when hot, place the corn directly on the bars. Cook for 30-40 mins, turning regularly, until the corn is tender and charred in spots.
Meanwhile, mash the butter with the lime zest and chili. When the cobs are done, top each with a knob of flavoured butter and serve with lime wedges. Add seasoning and cheese, if desired!

-Guacomole (easy!)... with Homemade Chips!
Ingredients: 3 avocados - peeled, pitted, and mashed, 1 lime, juiced, 1 teaspoon salt,½ cup diced onion, 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, 2 roma (plum) tomatoes, diced, 1 teaspoon minced garlic,1 pinch ground cayenne pepper (Optional)
In a medium bowl, mash together the avocados, lime juice, and salt. Mix in onion, cilantro, tomatoes, and garlic. Stir in cayenne pepper. Refrigerate 1 hour for best flavor, or serve immediately.

-Tortilla Chips!
Ingredients: 1 (12 ounce) package corn tortillas, 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, 3 tablespoons lime juice, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon salt
Step 1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Step 2 Cut each tortilla into 8 chip sized wedges and arrange the wedges in a single layer on a cookie sheet.
Step 3 In a mister, combine the oil and lime juice. Mix well and spray each tortilla wedge until slightly moist.
Step 4 Combine the cumin, chili powder and salt in a small bowl and sprinkle on the chips.
Step 5 Bake for about 7 minutes. Rotate the pan and bake for another 8 minutes or until the chips are crisp, but not too brown. Serve with salsas, garnishes or guacamole!

Here's a great history on Mexican cuisine: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mexican_cuisine

Some popular Spanish/Latin music: Gloria Estefan, Selena, Grupo Niche, Enrique Iglesias, Jose Alfredo Jimenez



Our first stop was the UK, laughs. We normally eat Greek food so it was a no-brainer.

It went very well. Just one recipe of the 3 failed.

Friday - Chicken Tikka Masala - We chose this as there is some dispute as to whether chicken tikka masala is an Indian dish. Chichen tikka is of course but the masala might have been added by a chef in the UK. When we travel to Indian we want to try proper Indian dishes and have mango lassi. Chicken Tikka Masala until recently was the most popular dish eaten in the UK.

Saturday - Toad in the hole with onion gravy

Sunday - Coronation chicken

Chicken Tikka Masala

This was a great recipe. The Marinade for the chicken Tikka was out of this world. Very good. The masala was good but one spice overpowered it, I think. As the spices were the same for the tikka, apart from the addition of Chilli, it might be an idea to reduce the amount of Chilli next time. We both think the chicken tikka would be great in pitta bread with some shredded cabbage. :)

Total Time 1hr 42 mins

Prep Time
20 minutes

Cook Time
22 minutes

Ingredients for 5 servings


3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
½ cup plain yogurt (125 g)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon paprika


3 tablespoons oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon minced ginger
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 tablespoon tomato puree
Tinned tomato sauce (400 g)
water (150 mL)
1 cup heavy cream (200 mL)

cooked rice, for serving
naan bread, for serving - used pitta bread


Bamboo or wooden skewer

Slice the chicken into bite-sized chunks. Combine the cubed chicken with the yoghurt, lemon juice, garlic, ginger, salt, cumin, garam masala, and paprika and stir until well-coated.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.
Preheat the oven to 500°F (260°C). Line a high-sided baking pan or roasting tray with parchment paper.
Place the marinated chicken pieces on bamboo or wooden skewers, then set them over the prepared baking pan, making sure there is space underneath the chicken to help distribute the heat more evenly. Bake for about 15 minutes, until slightly dark brown on the edges.
Make the sauce: Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat, then sauté the onions, ginger, and garlic until tender but not browned. Add the cumin, turmeric, coriander, paprika, chilli powder, and garam masala and stir constantly for about 30 seconds, until the spices are fragrant. Stir in the tomato puree, tomato sauce, and 150 ml water, then bring to a boil and cook for about 5 minutes. Pour in the cream.
Remove the chicken from the skewers and add to the sauce, cooking for another 1-2 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and serve over rice or alongside naan bread.


Toad in the Hole

Failed miserably with this. The batter was brittle and did not rise.

Prep:15 mins
Cook:45 mins
Serves 4

12 chipolatas
1 tbsp sunflower oil

For the batter
140g plain flour
2 eggs
175ml semi-skimmed milk

Heat the oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Put the chipolatas in a 20 x 30cm roasting tin with the oil and bake for 15 mins until browned.

Meanwhile, make the batter. Tip the flour into a bowl with ½ tsp salt, make a well in the middle and crack the eggs into it. Use an electric whisk to mix it together, then slowly add the milk, whisking all the time. Leave to stand until the sausages are nice and brown.

Remove the sausages from the oven – be careful because the fat will be sizzling hot – but if it isn’t, put the tin on the hob for a few minutes until it is.

Pour in the batter mix, transfer to the top shelf of the oven, then cook for 25-30 mins, until risen and golden. Serve with gravy and your favourite veg.

Onion Gravy - this was very tasty. Took a long time to make. If you have a recipe or tips on gravy, this would be greatly appreciated.

5 mins
1 hr 5 mins
1 hr 10 mins

1/2 stick (56 grams) unsalted butter
2 large yellow onions, peeled, cut in half and thinly sliced (or diced if you prefer smaller pieces)
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 cup red wine
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 large sprig fresh sage
2 cups strong beef broth
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon prepared yellow mustard
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon dark balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter

Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the sliced onions and sugar and cook for about 30 minutes until caramelized (deep golden). Add the red wine and herbs, bring to a rapid boil for 2 minutes, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the stock, mustard, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to a low simmer and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Remove sprigs of herbs. Add the vinegar, whisk in the cornstarch and simmer another minute or two until thickened, whisking continuously. Add the cold butter and whisk until dissolved. Add salt and pepper to taste and more mustard if desired.

Coronation chicken was wonderful. I poached it as I wanted to make chicken stock. It was as delicious as Mum's. Delighted!! :):D:cool:

I made a Union Jack and realized why there is a right and wrong way to fly it. The Welsh flag, while included, is only half the thickness of the x. Also, it does not carry through to the other half but changes sides.




English Country Dances - 17Th Century Music - J.Playford,D.Douglass,P.O'Dette,A.Lawrence-King

Medieval Folk Music - Medieval Inns & Taverns | Folk, Celtic, Traditional

All in all a thoroughly enjoyable weekend of food and sounds!!

Hope your weekend was just as good!
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