Monday, July 24, 2017

Summer Squash Soup

This recipe was derived from a recipe by Faith Durand. I initially made this with yellow squash, although the original recipe was for zucchini. 

This makes 1 1/2 quarts - appetizers for 4 or  dinner for 2

   3 tablespoons olive oil
   1 white onion, sliced
   8 to 9 large cloves garlic, sliced thinly
   2 medium squash, about 1 1/2 pounds
   4 cups water
   1 cube Rapunzel veggie boullion (or add stock veggies)
   1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
   Salt and pepper
   Almond yogurt seasoned with amchur powder
   chopped mint leaves

Heat the olive oil in a heavy 4-quart stock pot over medium heat. Add the sliced garlic and onions and cook on medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, or until the onion is soft and translucent. Keep the heat low enough that the garlic doesn't brown; you want everything to sweat.
When the onions are soft, add the squash and cook until soft. Add the broth and bring to a simmer. Simmer at a low heat for about 45 minutes.

Let cool slightly, then blend. 

Taste and season with ginger, salt and pepper. When serving, top with a dollop of yogurt and sprinkle with finely chopped mint leaves

Unike most soups, this is not significantly better after a night in the refrigerator. The flavors meld, but IMHO the soup was slightly better fresh.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Mexican Layer Dip

I made this for E's birthday party and it was very good.

2 cans Bush's pinto beans
1 can diced green chilies (mild)
cheddar (yellow & white) & pepper jack cheese
3 avocados
1 cup sour cream
limes
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
homemade salsa (garlic, tomatoes, shallots, cilantro, bell peppers, cumin, chili powder, lime, salt, pepper)

Rinse and drain pinto beans, pan fry in olive oil with a little crushed garlic, mashing a little over half the beans. Add green chilies and a squeeze of lime, salt & pepper. Cook until well seasoned. The beans will become stiffer after they cool.

Mash avocados with a little lime juice.

Mix paprika into sour cream, add a squeeze of lime. Flavor should be subtle.

Make salsa and lit sit an hour to let flavors develop.

Spread beans in glass casserole dish.
Top with a layer of finely grated cheese.
Spread avocados over cheese layer.
Spread sour cream over avocados. Refrigerate if making ahead.
Drain salsa & spread on top immediately before serving.



Monday, March 27, 2017

Apple Oatmeal Muffins

Ingredients 
  • 2 eggs 
  • 3/4 cup milk, almond milk, ...
  • 1/2 cup peanut oil - or use 1/4 butter, 1/4 oil
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour - I used a little whole wheat as well 
  • 1 cup uncooked thick cut oats 
  • 1 1/2 mashed ripe banana, milled
  • 1 Tbs baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp  ground cinnamon  
  • 2 medium or 3 small apples,  -cored, peeled and chopped
Directions
    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
    2. Grease 2 mini muffin tins.
    3. In a mixing bowl, lightly beat eggs; add milk and oil, stirring until just blended.
    4. Stir in flour, oats, banana, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon, mixing until only just moistened (do not overmix).
    5. Gently fold in the apples.
    6. Spoon batter into the muffin tins, dividing evenly among the cups.
    7. Bake in a preheated oven for 23 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
    8. Cool in pan 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to finish cooling.
    9. Serve warm or cool; store unused portions in an airtight container.


Thursday, February 23, 2017

Fisherman's Stew

This is an inexpensive, easy and tasty dish. Original source here was modified for our preferences.


6 large garlic cloves, crushed in press
4 anchovy fillets, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 medium carrot, chopped
Salt to taste
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, with liquid
3/4 cup white wine
8 oz clam juice 
3 cups water
1 pound potatoes (yukon gold or new), cut into big chunks 
1 large bay leaf
1 sprig pars 
Freshly ground pepper
1.8 lb pounds cod, cut in 2-inch pieces (could be more)
1 cup chopped parsley leaves (or more)



Place the garlic cloves and anchovies in a small bowl and mash. Set aside.

Heat the olive oil over medium heat in Dutch oven, and add the onion, celery and carrot with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring, until the onion is tender, about five minutes.

Add the pureed garlic and anchovy. Cook, stirring, until the mixture is very fragrant, about one minute, and then add the tomatoes. Cook, stirring often, until the tomatoes have cooked down a bit and the mixture smells aromatic, about 10 to 15 minutes.

Add the wine, clam juice, water, potatoes and the herbs. Salt to taste. Bring to a simmer. Turn the heat to low, cover partially and simmer 30 minutes. Taste, adjust salt and add pepper to taste.

Season the fish with salt and pepper, and stir into the soup. The soup should not be boiling. Simmer five to 10 minutes (depending on the thickness of the fillets) or just until it flakes easily when poked. Remove from the heat, stir in the parsley, taste once more, adjust seasonings and serve.

Advance preparation: You can make this without the fish up to three days ahead. Keep in the refrigerator, bring back to a simmer and proceed with the recipe.
 

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Dill & Shallot Bread

This one worked out very well. Makes a sandwich style loaf, went well with spicy lentil soup. Will try to duplicate.

2/3 cups Italian flour
1/2 cup WW flour
3 cups white bread flour
1.5 tsp salt
dollop unfed starter
2 tsp yeast
2.5 Tbs olive oil
1.5 cups water
3-4 Tbs chopped dill
1 large diced shallot

Made a very soft dough. Baked convection bake 425F for 20-25 min in dark metal loaf pan.

Friday, December 09, 2016

Thai Peanut Salad Cups

 

Thai Peanut Salad Cups (makes 12 cups)


You'll need:
24 wonton wrappers
vegetable oil cooking spray
1/4 cup all natural peanut butter
2 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
3 tsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp honey
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 tbsp grated ginger
1/4-1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (chili flakes)
450 grams shredded cabbage and carrots (buy a pre-washed bag at the grocery store if you wish!)
1-2 tbsp sliced green onions
2-3 tbsp crushed peanuts

To make:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray and place 2 wonton wrappers inside each muffin cup, making sure to offset the corners to create a "flower" pattern. Push the wrappers down into the muffin cups.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 10-13 minutes or until the cups are crispy and slightly browned. Let them cool in the muffin tin until they reach room temperature and then remove them to a wire rack or serving platter.

Combine the peanut butter, rice vinegar, lime juice, oil, soy sauce, honey, minced garlic, grated ginger, salt and red pepper flakes in a small bowl and whisk very well until combined. Set the dressing aside.

Add the shredded cabbage and carrots to a large bowl. Pour the dressing over the cabbage mix and toss well to coat. Spoon the cabbage salad into the cooled wonton cups and arrange them on a serving tray or platter. Top them with the sliced green onions and crushed peanuts and serve immediately!

To help the wonton wrappers keep their crunch it's best to serve these immediately after assembling. If you're making them for a party, feel free to assemble the cabbage salad ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until it's time to serve. Simply spoon the salad into the cups right before serving, and you're good to go!

Monday, November 14, 2016

Broccoli Cheese Muffins

These are a work in progress, first attempt at this. I didn't like any of the recipes I saw online so this is what I've tried.
  • 2 cups broccoli florets, cut into bite size pieces 
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled to room temperature 
  • 2 large eggs 
  • 1 1/2 cup buttermilk, room temperature 
  • 1 cup self-rising flour
  • 1 cup corn meal
  • 1 tsp baking powder 
  • 1/4 tsp salt 
  • 1 tsp mustard powder 
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
  • 1+ cup goat feta & Vermont cheddar cheese , grated
Preheat oven to 350F.

Mix dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately. I used blender on wet ingredients since butter solidified.

Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Fold in broccoli & cheese. Add more buttermilk if needed.

Grease mini muffin tins with butter. Fill to top of muffin tin, bake for 35 min.

Makes 39 mini muffins.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Spaghetti Squash with Ricotta, Sage, and Pine Nuts

Made this a few times. Easy & yummy. Will become a staple.
Another inspiration from thekitchn.  Don't think I'll need to modify this one beyond method for cooking squash.

Serves 4

1 tablespoon olive oil
6 to 8 fresh sage leaves
3/4 cup ricotta
2 cloves garlic, mashed or grated
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted 

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F: Preheat the oven while you prep the squash.
  2. Slice the squash in half: Use a chef's knife to cut the spaghetti squash lengthwise from stem to tail. Spaghetti squash are really tough and hard, so be cautious and work slowly. You can cradle the squash in a balled-up dish cloth to keep it steady as you cut.
  3. Scoop out the seeds: Use a soup spoon to scrape out the seeds and stringy bits of flesh from inside the squash. Be careful of actually digging into the flesh, though — we want that! The inside should look clean and fairly smooth. Discard the seeds (or save them and roast them for a snack!).
  4. Place the squash in a roasting pan: Place the squash halves cut-side down in a roasting pan.
  5. Pour in a little water: Pour a little water in the pan, enough to cover the bottom. Your squash will roast just fine without it, but I find that the water helps the squash steam and become more tender. You can also cover the pan with aluminum foil, if you prefer.
  6. Cook the squash for 45 minutes: Transfer the squash to the oven and cook for 45 minutes. Smaller squash will cook more quickly than larger squash. Check the squash after 30 minutes to gauge cooking.
  7. Heat the olive oil in a small pan: Quickly fry sage leaves until crispy but not burnt. Crumble sage leaves into a large bowl and combine with ricotta and garlic. Set aside. 
  8. The squash is done when tender: The squash is ready when you can easily pierce a fork through the flesh all the way to the peel. The flesh will also separate easily into spaghetti-like strands. You can also taste it right now — if the noodles are still a bit crunchy for your taste, put the squash back in the oven for another 15 to 20 minutes.
  9. Scrape out the squash: Use a fork to gently pull the squash flesh from the peel and to separate the flesh into strands. The strands wrap around the squash horizontally — rake your fork in the same direction as the strands to make the longest "noodles."
  10. Add the squash to the bowl with the ricotta mixture: Combine squash and ricotta mixture and season to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with pine nuts before serving. 

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Buttermilk White Bread

Inspired by this recipe.

¼ cup, plus 1 TBSP water
¾ cup buttermilk
3 TBSP vegetable oil
3 cups bread flour
⅓ cup oatmeal
1½ tsp salt
3 TBSP sugar
1.5 tsp rapid rise yeast

I made this using the dough setting for the bread machine.

Heat water and buttermilk to 80F (in microwave for 30 seconds). Next time, start with more buttermilk and add water to determine correct amount. The dough should be a soft tacky ball.

Pat or roll dough into rectangle of floured surface. Tightly roll up starting with narrow edge of rectangle. Pinch and seal edges underneath.

Place in 9.5 x 5x5 in pan (1.5 lb) to rise till ripe. Next time, try pushing the dough down into the pan to almost touch the sides. Proof at 100F for about 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 375F on convection setting (350F). Bake until internal temp reaches 205F, about 35 min. Cool on rack if possible. If not, slice and eat warm. Yum.







Thursday, January 14, 2016

Wheat Berry Salad

This has become a favorite for almost any occasion. Not gluten free :)

Recipe serves 6

Ingredients:
   1 1/2 cups wheat berries
   3/4 cups walnuts or pecans, chopped
   2 stalks celery, finely chopped
   1/2 cups dried cranberries, chopped
   1 scallion, chopped (white and green parts)
   1/2 cup parsley, finely chopped
   3 Tbs olive oil
   2 Tbs lemon juice + zest
   salt & pepper
   crumbled feta cheese

Directions:

In a large pot, combine the wheat berries and enough water to cover by 2 inches.
Bring to a boil and cook uncovered for 1 hour or until tender.
Drain and let cool.
Toast the nuts in a dry skillet over medium-high heat until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

This is good cold or room temperature. Probably keeps well, but we always eat it within 24 hours no matter how much we make.