Mama Lisa's World
International Music & Culture
A place for poems, songs, rhymes and traditions from around the world for both kids and grown-ups to enjoy!

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Articles about 'Recipes of the World'
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Icelandic Pancakes are called Pönnukökur.  They’re served for breakfast and also for special occasions. They’re more like French crepes than thick American pancakes. These pancakes are mainly served two ways, either sprinkled with sugar and rolled up or covered in blueberry (or other flavored) jam and whipped cream and folded in fours. No matter how […]
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Wondering what to do with all that summer zucchini?  Try Zucchini Fritters!  Both my husband and daughter loved them! The beauty of this recipe is that all you need is zucchini, cheddar cheese and some basic ingredients you probably have already.  It’s quick to make too. You can grate the zucchini in a food processor […]
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Baba Ghanoush (also spelled baba ghanouj) is an eggplant dip that’s eaten in the Middle East. Variations can be found in Egypt, Syria, Israel, Palestine, Jordon, Lebanon, Turkey and Armenia. Baba Ghanoush is often served with other dips like hummus. Pita bread is usually sliced up and dipped into the baba ghanoush.  We also eat […]
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Monique grew up eating Tortilla de patatas (potato omelet).  The recipe was passed down from her grandma to her mother. Tortilla de patatas is a type of potato omelet from Spain.  Tortilla in Spain is different from tortilla in Mexico and South America (where it’s a thin flatbread). Tortilla originally meant small cake.  Tortilla de […]
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Wondering what to do with your overripe bananas? Need a quick dessert to make? This Baileys Banana Ice Cream Recipe uses just 3 ingredients, takes care of those ole bananas and it’s simple to make… Quick Recipe for Bailey’s Banana Ice Cream Freeze slices of bananas for about 2 hours. Put in food processor with […]
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I’ve been writing a lot about traditional Japanese dishes for the New Year.  Here’s another installment! My friend Ayako wrote from Japan about the food she made for New Year’s Day: Lisa, Happy New Year ! This year I didn’t have a lot of time, so I made just two dishes of New Year foods. […]
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Sadao Mazuka wrote to me about New Year’s food (おせち料理) that’s eaten in Japan. "On New Year’s Eve, we ate year-crossing noodles when my sons were young. This year on Jan 1st to 3rd, we are going to have ‘zoni’ and ‘sechi’ or ‘O-sechi’." Zoni is a soup with either a fish based broth or […]
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There’s an old Japanese tradition,  from over 200 years ago, to eat soba noodles on New Year’s Eve.  About half of the population of Japan still follow this custom. The dish they eat is called Toshikoshi Soba or Year-Crossing Noodles. Sadao from Japan wrote to me about it: "On New Year’s Eve, we would eat […]
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Jordan Almonds are given out as favors at weddings, bridal showers and baby showers in the US, France, Italy, Greece and the Middle East.  It’s believed that the name for Jordan Almonds does not come from Jordan, but is a corruption of the French word "jardin" (garden) because these almonds were grown in gardens. Traditionally, […]
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The Sugar-plum Tree is a sweet poem by Eugene Field. Sugar-plums are candy like Jordan Almonds.  Other treats aside from almonds can be found inside the hard outer sugarcoating.  You can read the poem below and listen along to the recording… MP3 Recording of The Sugar-plum Tree The Sugarplum Tree By Eugene Field Have you […]
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Sugarplums are associated with Christmas even though most people don’t really know what they are!  They’re actually like Jordan Almonds – but not necessarily with almonds inside.  Jordan almonds are almonds with several coatings of sugar. Sugarplums aren’t heard of much anymore outside of Christmas poems like, "T’was the Night Before Christmas" with the lines: […]
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Nettles are a spiky leafy plant found in much of the world.  The leaves can be eaten, but you need to use gloves when picking and cooking nettles since they’re prickly. Once they’re cooked they become soft. (Note: You don’t want to eat them once they’ve started flowering.) Nettles can be found in various recipes […]
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Shirley Pitcher wrote to me from Australia about a family tradition, handed down from her great-grandmother who came from North Ireland, to eat Nettle Cake or Eccles Cake on New Year’s Eve. Here’s Shirley’s letter followed by a recipe I found for Eccles Cake: The Great-Grandma I remember – Her name was Rosa – she […]
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It’s almost the time of year when many of us will be preparing gingerbread houses with our families! We don’t often think of it but, of course, gingerbread houses are associated with the story of Hansel and Gretel. They’re lured into the home of the witch in the forest since it’s made of gingerbread and […]
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It’s easy to make Day of the Dead cookies!  Simply buy a skull cookie cutter like this one.  Make your favorite recipe for sugar cookies and cut out skull shapes.  After they’ve been cooked and have cooled, put white icing on them.  Finally, using a tube of black icing and make fancy features to create […]
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Sadao Makuza wrote to us about Halloween in Japan… Halloween here is mainly a sales strategy in department stores and supermarkets. Children only go trick-or-treating if it’s arranged in school or with family and friends. Halloween first appeared in Japan in the 1970’s by the Kiddy Land Company store in Tokyo to promote Halloween goods. […]
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Saffron has a wonderful aroma.  Adding it to your rice can make it taste extra special! The simplest way for westerners to make basic saffron rice is to soak 1/2 t. of saffron in 3T. of boiling water for 10 minutes.  Then add the mixture to your regular rice recipe when adding the water.   Ayako […]
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Sushi is a delicious cuisine from Japan!  Did you know there’s a right way to eat it?  Here’s how… 1. Pick up the sushi rolls (the type that’s wrapped in seaweed) with your fingers and dip one side into the soy sauce and put it into your mouth. The type of sushi that’s just rice […]
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Eating bugs might sound disgusting to most of us today, but some people used to love it!  Maybugs or Cockchafers used to be a great nuisance to crops in Europe.  People were encouraged to hunt them down to lower their population.  There’s even a French song about hunting Maybugs called Il était un petit homme […]
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One summer, my husband and I visited Montreal where we had an amazing cucumber soup with a spoonful of raspberry sherbet in the middle.  I’ve been making this soup every summer since then.  It’s a wonderful meal on a hot day. Recipe for Creamy Cold Cucumber Soup with Raspberry Sherbet Ingredients 6 Small Cucumbers (peeled, […]
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