Falafels

Falafel ++ the pear and plum

I’m super picky about falafel. Why does cooking vegetarian mean it has to be really spicy or really bland?  I’m not a vegetarian (yet), but i really appreciate vegetarian food when its done well. This recipe is really great. Its based on a recipe in a cookbook I’m getting rid of but i wanted to keep this recipe around.

ingredients:

  • 1 (15 oz) can Chickpeas, drained
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, crushed
  • 2 TBSP chopped fresh Parsley
  • 2 TBSP chopped fresh Cilantro (or Dill)
  • 1 TBSP chopped fresh Mint
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 2 TBSP Bread Crumbs [i crushed up TLC Crackers and mixed in Wheat Germ. I’ve also used saltines]
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • 1/4 Lemon
  • Grape Seed Oil, for frying

directions:

  1.  Grind up the chickpeas in a food processor until they are just smooth, then mix them with all the other ingredients until you have a thick creamy paste. Add pepper to taste.
  2. Using wet hands, shape the chickpea mixture into 8 rounds and chill for 30 minutes so they become firm.
  3. Meanwhile, heat about 1/4 inch of oil in a cast iron frying pan and fry the falafels a few at a time on medium heat. Cook each one for about 8 minutes, turning the falafels carefully just once.
  4. Drain the falafels on paper towels and fry the rest in batches, reheating the oil in between.
  5. Serve tucked inside warm pita bread with tomatoes and yogurt.

Portobello Mushrooms

portobello

LOVE these…. You can cooke them on the grill or in the oven. (I used my toaster oven) You can put them on a sandwich or eat plain as a side dish. The only thing is that you really have to use good Balsamic because its a major flavor in the finished product. Dont skimp. Go get some good stuff. (inspiration from here on food52.com)

ingredients:

  • 4 Portobello Mushrooms
  • Garlic Clove, rough chopped
  • 1/2 – 3/4  Cup Good Balsamic Vineger
  • 1 T Lemon Thyme
  • Salt to taste.

directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  2. Combine balsamic, garlic, thyme and salt in a small bowl.
  3. Wash mushroom caps and lay out in a shallow pan, stem side up to marinate. Pour marinade over them and let sit for 30 minutes. (I basted them in the liquid every so often)
  4. Place a cooling rack on a cookie sheet lined with parchment. Cook the mushrooms on the rack 10 minutes per side, flipping them until they’re “done”. [Done is a funny thing with these…. they’re mushrooms. And they’re pretty much good when they’re hot ….so you can decide on what doneness you’re looking for beyond that.]

 

tags:  dinner, side dish, vegetarian, vegan, appetizer

Curried Beef Stew with Pancetta and Kale

Okay. I don’t like Beef stew. There. I said it. I realize I’m the only one on Earth but thats just how it is. Its boring to me.

My husband, on the other hand, does not share my opinion… SO we changed it up in a curry/kale-ish sort of way to see if a beef stew could ever make me happy. And I’ll admit, this one was worth writing down.

(and yea yea, theres tons of ingredients, but its worth it )

 

ingredients:

  • 5 oz Chopped Pancetta 
  • 1 lb Stew Meat
  • Coconut Oil (for pan)
  • 2 Onions, chopped fine
  • 2 Head of Garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 1tsp Sugar
  • 2T Curry Powder
  • 5 Carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 small Celeriac, peeled and chopped
  • 5 Parsnips, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Can peeled Plum Tomatoes 
  • 2 T Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 T Ginger, grated [we use our zester for this]
  • 3 Cups Veg Broth
  • A large handful of Kale, centers removed and chopped fine
  • 1/4 Can Coconut Milk (this is optional. My husband like this but i didn’t. You can decide)
  • Cilantro as a garnish

directions:

  1. In a very large stock pot, saute the Pancetta. Remove when done.
  2. Brown the stew meat on med high in the remaining fat from the pancetta. Add a bit more oil if you need to [we used coconut oil] Remove when done browning.
  3. Put onions and garlic in the pan with the sugar and caramelize. When they’re almost ready, Add 1 T of coconut oil and about 2 T curry powder to the center of the pan and cook until fragrant. [Be careful not to burn! You just want to toast it a bit.]
  4. Add carrotts, celeriac and parsnips. Stir them into the curry and let them cook for 2 min or so.
  5. Add the entire can of tomatoes with liquid, 2T of apple cider vinegar, 1 T fresh grated ginger and 3 Cups of vegetable broth.
  6. Bring to a simmer, cover, turn to low and cook for 2 hours. 
  7. Add kale and cook for 20 more minutes. 
  8. Lastly, add coconut milk [if using] and cilantro to garnish each bowl.

Ginger Snaps


ginger snap

Look… I dont even like gingersnaps. But somehow the other day, I was craving them. And  these totally did the trick… (But i will say that there wasn’t a lot of snap in mine.) Original recipe from smitten kitchen….. I’ve edited for my tastes below.

(Yields about 4 dozen)

ingredients

  • 2 1/4 cups (281 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons (10 grams) baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2 to 3 grams) table salt
  • 3 teaspoons (6 grams) ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon (2 grams) cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon (1 gram) allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper [didnt have/didnt use/didnt miss it]
  • 2 sticks (8 ounces or 227 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • *a bit less than 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
  • *a bit less than 1/2 cup (96 grams) light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup (79 ml) unsulphured molasses

*a note about the sugar… I’m a big fan of less sugar in all of my baking so i’m always changing amounts. This time I tried 1/4 cup of both sugars and they came out… good…. but could definitely stand a bit more sugar, even by my standards, so i changed the measurement to “a bit less than”. Original recipe used 1/2 cup of both so proceed as you wish.

directions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt and spices.
  2. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugars together until fluffy, about three minutes on medium. Add egg and molasses and beat until combined.
  3. Add dry ingredient and beat at low speed until just combined. Thoroughly scrape down bowl, ensuring ingredients are evenly mixed.
  4. Transfer your cookie dough to a bowl. “Chill in fridge for at least two hours, until firm.” […said the original recipe. I rolled my eyes and made them right away and wasn’t sad about that in the end. Maybe sometime i will have the patience to wait]
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Make dough into 1-inch balls and spread at least two inches apart on baking sheets that have either been greased or lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, which is a long range. In the 10 to 12 range, the cookies will be softer. In the 13 to 15 range, a bit snappier. In both cases, you’ll want to leave them on their baking sheets for long enough that they’re firm enough to be transferred to a cooling rack with a spatula, anywhere from 2 to 5 minutes. Cool cookies completely before packing up.

 

tags:  dessert, less sugar, lower sugar

Supreme Biscuits


download

a recipe from Adria…. I can’t remember where she got it. I’m thinking Betty Crocker? Regardless, they are faaaabulous aside some stew or with jam at breakfast or with homemade butter. (!!!)

The following picture comes from my latest attempt of cooking with a two year old. So of course I totally messed up the recipe… then i tried to compensate for my mistake and ended up with a soupy dough…. sooooo I just spooned it into muffin tins. Biscuit Muffins? Still pretty good. And a weird picture is better than no picture at all…. I’ll put a real biscuit pic up the next time I make them.

ingredients:

  • 2 C Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
  • 2 tsp Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Cream of Tartar
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 Cup Butter, cut into smaller pieces
  • 2/3 Cup Milk

directions:

  1. Turn oven to 450 degrees.
  2. In a food processor, combine Flour, Baking Powder, Sugar, Cream of Tartar and Salt. ( note to self: I tried the  plastic blade, next time use regular metal blade because its bigger and will mix better)
  3. Cut in 1/2 Cup butter by hitting pulse until butter disappears into flour
  4. Slowly add 2/3 Cup milk and pulsing until a sticky dough forms
  5. Spoon out onto a greased baking sheet
  6. Cook for 10-12 min or until golden brown

tags: appetizer, stew, soup, breakfast, dinner, jam, low sugar

Green Smoothie!

GreenSmoothie

Yes there is Kale in this.

No, you cant taste it.

Lime is the biggest flavor in this one and after I have one of these smoothies I crave more for days. (original recipe from here)

ingredients:

  • 1 granny smith apple, peeled and cut into big pieces (or one pear)
  • 2 cups of kale (pull leaves from two stalks to make two cups)
  • 1 lime, juiced [or one lemon i guess but lime is best]
  • 1 small handful of cilantro (pull the leaves from the stalks)
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated ginger [I keep my ginger in the freezer and use a zester to grate it]
  • 1/3 cup chopped frozen banana (entirely optional, add if you want a more creamy texture)
directions:
1. Combine ingredients in a food processor (or blender) and puree.
2. Drink and be healthy.
tags: veggie smoothie, green drink, breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, salad juice, juicing, blender