Monday, August 30, 2010

Marinated Grilled Eggplant

1 large or several small eggplants
2 T basil
1 T olive juice from jarred green olives
1 clove garlic minced
1/2 t dried oregano
1/4 t minced peperocini
olive oil
2 T balsamic vinegar
salt & pepper to taste
Cut eggplant into strips. Put in a colander and salt. Let sit for 30 minutes and rinse well. Grill in vegetable basket until soft and cooked through.

Mix garlic, olive juice, vinegar, basil, peperocini, salt, pepper and oregano. Add olive oil to taste. Mix grilled eggplant in with the marinate.
I am usually not a big fan of eggplant, but this was really good! I think part of the taste came from the little eggplants we bought at the farmers market.

Salmon with Lemon Leek Sauce

Leek Sauce:
1 large leek
1 T olive oil
1/2 T butter
3T lemon juice
1 c almond milk*
1 T fresh basil chopped
1 t corn starch
1/4-1/2 t honey (optional)

Clean and chop leeks. Saute in olive oil and butter on low until soft. About 2o minutes. Add lemon juice and cook until juice is gone. Add milk and basil and simmer until slightly reduced. If needed, sprinkle in a little corn starch to thicken. Taste. If the lemon is too sour, add a little honey to cut down on the acidity but not to sweeten the sauce.

Grill salmon and top with sauce.

*you can use regular milk or cream

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Chicken Cacciatore

1 pckg mushrooms
4 chicken breasts
2 cloves garlic
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 T Worcestershire
1 jalapeno
1 tsp dried rosemary crushed
olive oil
black pepper
2 red peppers chopped
1 yellow onion chopped
2 large tomatoes chopped
handful of fresh basil chopped

Cut the chicken in pieces and saute in olive oil. Saute onions for a few minutes and then add the red peppers, garlic, mushrooms and jalapeno. Saute until veggies are soft. Add tomatoes, rosemary & pepper. Cook until the tomatoes have lost their form and are incorporated into the dish. Add the vinegar, worcestershire and basil.

I roasted a chicken last night and used the leftovers in this, so did not saute the chicken. I had a jalapeno sitting around from my garden, otherwise I would have used red pepper flakes.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Tofu with Lime Sauce

I made this to go with my Cajun Beans. The two didn't pair well, but were both good individually. I'll be making this one again. It's fast, easy and really good. It would be great added into rice dishes.
2 T olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb firm tofu in water, drained, and cut into 1" pieces
1/4 t ground cumin
1/3 c lime juice
2 T soy sauce
1/4 t black pepper

Sauce the garlic in olive oil until it's almost done, but not brown. Add the tofu. Cook the tofu until it's golden in color, about 8 minutes. Mix the cumin, lime juice, soy sauce and black pepper. Add the lime juice mixture to the tofu and cook until the liquid is absorbed.

Cajun Beans

C is out with work tonight, so I was looking for a really quick easy dinner. The kids get almost unmanageable around 5:00 every night and when I'm cooking it's just bad news. This turned out really well. I'd add more spice if it was just me eating it. It did have a little too much salt for me, so I'd make my own cajun seasoning next time with paprika, oregano and thyme. It would also be good with a few other veggies like red pepper and corn thrown in there.

2 T olive oil
1 medium onion chopped
1 clove garlic chopped
1 15oz can chopped tomatoes
1 T white vinegar
1/2 t cajun seasoning
1 red potato chopped
3 oz ham steak
1 can butter beans
pepper to taste

Saute the onions in the olive oil until transparent and soft. Add the garlic and cook for another minute before adding the tomatoes, vinegar, cajun seasoning, potato, ham, beans and pepper. Cook for about 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Asian Meatloaf & Coconut Rice

This is one of those meals that I start cooking and have no idea what I'm making. My stocked cupboard comes in handy on days like this. I start throwing things together and hope the meal turns out. All of it was great. The next time I make this, I may cut down on the chilli sauce or use a little applesauce and red pepper flakes instead.

Asian Meatloaf
1.5 lbs ground turkey
1 carrot grated
2-3 oz bamboo shoots, chopped
3/4 c rolled oats
1/2 c dried apples chopped
1 egg
1/4 t dried ginger
1/4 t fresh ginger grated
1 T sweet chilli sauce (like Mae Ploy)
2 T sherry
1 t soy sauce
1/2 t dark sesame oil

Mix all together. Bake 350 for 45 to 60 minutes.

Coconut Rice:
1 c coconut milk
2 c water
1 1/2 c brown rice
1 lemon
1 t asian fish sauce
2 to 3 oz bamboo shoots, chopped*

Trim 1/4 to 1/2 of the rind off the lemon. Add the lemon rind, water, coconut milk and fish sauce to a pot and boil. Add rice, cover and cook until done. Stir in the bamboo shoots.

We ate this with corn on the cob and salad with Japanese dressing. I didn't measure any of the dressing ingredients, used olive oil instead of peanut, eliminated the onion, water and sugar. I'm not sure what the original dressing would taste like, but my version was very good.

*I used one 5 oz can of bamboo shoots between the two recipes.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Caterpillar Cake

Both of these cupcake recipes looked decent, but as always, I had to make changes to them to improve on them. To make the caterpillar, I used dates for the legs and sage leaves for the antennae. I used the same frosting for both types of cupcakes.
Red Velvet:
1 c unsalted butter
2 eggs
1 c sugar
2 T cocoa powder
2 oz red food coloring
1 1/2 c white flour
1 c white whole wheat flour
1 t salt
1 c buttermilk
1 t vanilla extract
1 t baking soda
1 t vanilla

2 T flour
1 c milk
1 c unsalted butter
1 c powder sugar
1 t vanilla

Cream together butter, sugar & egg. In a different bowl, mix together food coloring and cocoa. Add this to the butter mixture and mix together. Add flour and salt to the butter mixture alternately with the buttermilk and vanilla in 3 additions. Fold in the baking soda and vinegar. Pour into lined cupcake pans. Bake about 22 minutes at 350. Or, pour into 2 greased 9" pans and bake 30 minutes.

Frosting: Cook flour and milk over medium heat, whisking, until thickened. Let cool. Cream together butter, sugar and vanilla. Add the milk mixture to the butter mixture. Beat in any food coloring if wanted.

Buttermilk Cupcakes:
2 c white flour
2 c white whole wheat flour
2 t baking powder
2 t baking soda
1 1/2 t salt
1 c unsalted butter
1 1/2 c sugar
2 t vanilla
1 t almond extract
4 large eggs
2 cups buttermilk

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, add vanilla and almond. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well between each. Add buttermilk until combined. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add flour mixture to to butter mixture in 3 batches. Beat just until combined. Bake about 22 minutes in lined cupcake pans.

Veggie Burgers

10 oz frozen spinach (thawed & drained)
1 T olive oil
1 bunch scallions chopped
1/2 to 1 c carrot shredded
1/2 t dried oregano
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup soy nuts (or walnuts)
1/2 c cooked brown rice
1 cake of firm tofu (about 16 oz)
1 rounded tsp dijon mustard
soy sauce
black pepper
2 T chopped fresh basil

Saute the scallion, carrots, oregano and garlic until soft.

In a food processor, chop soy nuts and rice until crumbly. Move to bowl. Pulse half of the spinach and half of the tofu until combined and uniform in color. Add to nut & rice mixture. Pulse other half of spinach and tofu with mustard, black pepper, basil. Add the soy sauce and worcestershire to taste. Mix these and the carrot mixture into the rest of the mixture.

Shape into 6 burgers. Place on cookie sheet with either oil or corn meal under them. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes, until puffed and brown.

You can serve them right out of the oven or chill and grill to reheat. They freeze really well, so I make multiple batches at once. I serve them with flat buns, mustard, tomato and lettuce.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Vegetarian Bolognese

The original recipe for this comes from Moosewood Lodge. As with just about every recipe I make, I've changed it.

Olive oil
2 chopped onions
1/2 t red pepper flakes
1 t dried oregano
5 cloves garlic
1 diced medium eggplant
4 carrots diced mushrooms diced
1/4 t salt
16 oz firm tofu diced
1 c red bell pepper diced or zucchini
2 15 oz cans diced tomatoes
1/2 c dry red wine
2 T tomato paste
fresh ground black pepper
1/3 c fresh chopped basil
Juice of 1/2 or full lemon
2 T balsamic vinegar
whole grain pasta

Chop all the veggies in a quisinart. Sautee the onions, garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes for about 10 minutes. Add eggplant, carrots & mushrooms, and salt. Cover and cook 5 minutes. Add tofu and bell pepper (or zucchini), cover and cook 5 minutes. Add in tomatoes, wine, tomato paste and black pepper. Simmer uncovered for 15 minutes. Add basil, lemon juice, & balsamic vinegar to taste before serving.

Serve with whole grain pasta and parmesan or romano cheese.