Friday, November 12, 2010

Curried Black Bean and Sweet Potato Skillet

Just keep some cooked quinoa in the fridge, it makes life much easier. Or freeze it in 1 cup increments.

4 cups of sweet potatoes, chopped up

1 red onion, diced
½ a jalapeno, diced
3 cloves of garlic, chopped up
2 bell peppers (any color will do)
1-15 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 bunch of Swiss chard, stemmed and chopped
1 cup of cooked quinoa
½ cup low sodium veggie broth
2 tsp of olive oil
1 tbsp of curry powder

Salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil in a large non-stick sauté pan. Stir in your onions and jalapeños and allow to cook for about five minutes. Stir in the sweet potatoes, curry powder, a pinch of salt and half of the veggie broth. Once everything is well combined, pop a lid on and cook for about six to eight minutes or until your sweet potatoes are just about fork tender.

Add the beans, quinoa, Swiss chard, and peppers and season with salt and pepper. Pour the remaining broth in to the pan before popping the lid on and allowing to cook for another five minutes or so or until the greens are wilted and the beans are heated through.

Eat up and enjoy!!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Quinoa. Eat some

Super simple quinoa side/main dish. Also good for breakfast, late night "i just want a bite of something"

You need:

Baby bella mushrooms, cut into 4 or 6 pieces
2 leeks. Cut up and washed
Olive oil
2-4 cups cooked quinoa

1 carrot shredded on a cheese grater

Saute the leek in olive oil until translucent. If you're adding the carrot do it once the leek is done, give it a good stir. Dump in the mushrooms (and spinach), saute for a quick minute, then add quinoa by the cup until the veggie/quinoa ratio is what you're looking for. Salt to taste.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Pumpkin Apple Pancakes

This yummy autumnal recipe cleverly puts your left over roasted pumpkin puree to good use.

You need:
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup AND 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (canned will do in a pinch- but fresh pumpkin is easy and awesome!)
  • 1 apple, seeded, peeled, chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1-1/2 cups milk
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons oil

  1. In a medium bowl stir together the flour, baking powder and salt.
  2. In another medium bowl combine the apples, lemon juice, sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg
  3. Add the pumpkin to the apple spice mixture
  4. In another medium bowl combine the milk, egg and oil. Add the milk mixture all at once to flour mixture. Stir just until moistened- small chunkies are ok.
  5. Add the apple-pumpkin goodness to the pancake batter. Be careful not to over mix the batter as over mixing leads to tough pancakes.
  6. Cook pancakes in a pre-heated, greased skillet (cast iron preferrably) until surfaces are bubbly and edges are set. Turn only once (frequent flipping also leads to tough pancakes) and continue cooking until just done.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Delicious Bread

Got: off the back of the bag of flour,

made: because I'm trying to use up our oatmeal before we move.

Fact: Delicious!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Umami soup

  • 8 cups Water
  • 2 pounds Beef Short Ribs
  • Your Preferred Veggies For Stock
  • 1 piece Star Anise
  • 2 whole Cloves
  • 2 whole Bay Leaves
  • 1 Tablespoon Black Peppercorns
  • 1 cup Mushrooms
  • 1 cup Barley
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 cup Spinach, Chopped
  • ¼ cups Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Better Than Bouillon (Beef)

Preparation Instructions

(See notes below.)

The night before, make the beef stock. Bring to a boil the water, beef, peppercorns, bay leaves, cloves, anise, and veggies. Reduce heat and simmer. (Variety is important here. I use scraps of onions, celery, carrots, and a few cloves of garlic. Don’t use potatoes or anything starchy.)

Let it simmer for 2 to 3 hours if you can handle it, then turn off the heat and allow it to cool. Use tongs to remove the beef to a bowl, then strain the broth into the bowl through the finest mesh strainer you have. (You can use a bacon splatter shield on top of the bowl if you have one.)

Cover and refrigerate over night.

The next day, the fat will have separated and the flavors will have settled. Remove half the fat and set aside.

In a soup pan, heat olive oil and saute the onion until translucent.

While that’s going on, toast the barley in another pan using butter and olive oil. Toast over high heat, stirring frequently until it darkens in color and smells nutty.

To the onion, add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Then add stock, barley, mushrooms and Better Than Bouillion to the pan. (Go easy on the Better Than Bouillon; we will be adding soy sauce as well later.) It’s better that the broth taste thin at this point. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and allow to cook for 45 minutes. Add spinach, soy sauce, and cook for 5 minutes.


I used short ribs to make the stock because they’re fatty and that’s generally delicious for stock. I didn’t love the meat in the soup though, so I’ll be tossing that in the crockpot for something else.

Don’t not toast the barley. It’s a pain but totally worth it, and intrinsic to the taste of the soup.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Barley Pilaf/stuffing


  • 1 whole Long Island Cheese Pumpkin (optional)
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 1 cup Barley
  • 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 cups Chicken Stock
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 whole Bay Leaf
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • ½ cup Hulled Sunflower Seeds
  • 1 whole Onion, Chopped
  • 1 whole Granny Smith Apple, Peeled And Chopped
  • 1 cup Frozen Chopped Spinach
  • 1 dash Rice Vinegar

Preparation Instructions

To toast the barley:
Heat 1T Olive oil and 1T butter in a small dutch oven or thick bottomed sauce pan over medium heat. Once the butter is melted, put barley in and increase heat to high. Stir frequently, until the barley darkens and begins to smell nutty.

Once barley is toasty, reduce heat to medium. Add the 3 cloves garlic, minced and stir for another minute or so, until the garlic is fragrant.

Add the 2 cups stock, 1 cup water and bay leaf to the barley garlic mixture and turn down to a simmer. Cook for 45-60 minutes depending on your barley.

NOTE: If stuffing a pumpkin, at this time cut the top off and scoop out seeds and stringy flesh. Replace the top, place pumpkin in a pan with 1 inch of water and bake at 350 until easily pierced with a knife. (40 minutes or so)

Once the barley is done, remove bay leaf and discard. Remove barley pan from heat and let sit.

Put remaining 1T Olive oil and 1T butter in a pan, and toast sunflower seeds the same way you did the barley. Add onion and apple, and saute until translucent. Add frozen spinach and cover for 3 minutes, until spinach has cooked and can be easily mixed with onion mixture.

Mix sunflower seed/onion/apple/spinach into barley. Barley may have clumped a bit in sitting, just fluff it with a fork when you add everything else in.

Add dash or 2 of rice vinegar to taste. Doesn’t need much, just enough to finish the dish.

Serve as is for a side, or spoon stuffing into roasted pumpkin and return to 350 degree oven for 15-20 minutes to allow flavors to meld. Transfer to pretty plate and bring whole pumpkin to table. To serve, scoop out some pumpkin flesh with the barley mixture.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


After browsing several recipes for several days I pulled together this recipe. It took apprx 2+ hours to prep and then prepare, but it was so tasty and pretty when it was done. I wish I'd taken a picture, but it was late damnit, and I was hungry!

Without further ado:

1 lb skinless chicken breast
Spice Mix for chicken, recipe follows
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 chorizo sausages, thickly sliced (my only option was keilbasa-esque looking packaged chorizo so I took it and I used it all)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 Spanish/yellow onion, sliced thin
1 giant green pepper, thinly sliced
1 gaint red pepper, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, crushed
Bunch flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped, reserve some for garnish
1 giant tomato, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 1/2 cups short grain rice like Bomba (which I couldnt find so I used well rinsed arborio/risotto instead)
4 cups chicken stock
Generous pinch saffron threads
1 dozen littleneck clams, scrubbed
1 pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and de-veined
2 4oz pieces of Mahi-Mahi cut into halves
1/2 cup sweet peas, frozen and thawed
Lemon wedges, for serving

Spice Mix for chicken:
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Combine ingredients in a small bowl. Rub the spice mixture all over the chicken; marinate for 1 hour, covered

Special equipment:
Large paella pan or wide shallow skillet (Note: I used two pans in order to facilitate a seafood free batch, and lacking a proper paella pan I used a 6 qt saute pan, as well as an enameled cast iron dutch oven. The batch made in the saute pan came out much better.


Rub the spice mix all over the chicken and let sit for 1 hour in the refrigerator.
Heat oil in a paella pan over medium-high heat. Saute the chorizo until browned, remove and reserve. Add chicken, brown on all sides, turning with tongs. Add salt and freshly ground pepper. Remove from pan and reserve.

In the same pan, make a sofrito by sauteing the onions, garlic, and parsley. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes on a medium heat. Then, add tomatoes and cook until the mixture caramelizes a bit and the flavors meld. Fold in the rice and stir-fry to coat the grains. Pour in stock and add peppers and simmer for 10 minutes, gently moving the pan around so the rice cooks evenly and absorbs the liquid. AVOID STIRRING. Stirring releases the starches in the rice and should be avoided if you want your paella to resemble and taste like paella and not risotto! Add chicken, chorizo, mahi mahi and saffron. Add the clams and shrimp, tucking them into the rice. The shrimp and mahi will take about 8 minutes to cook. Give the paella a good shake and let it simmer, without stirring, until the rice is al dente, for about 15 minutes. If your rice is hard and the stock has evaporated, add a little more. Repeat as needed. When the paella is cooked and the rice looks fluffy and moist, turn the heat up for 40 seconds until you can smell the rice toast at the bottom, then it's perfect.

Remove from heat and rest for 5 minutes, covered with a clean dish towel. Garnish with peas, parsley and lemon wedges.