Posts Tagged ‘recipes’

happy hallowgiving!

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

I seriously don’t know why I said happy Thanksgiving earlier. I’m a little concerned about my grey matter.

Anyway. Halloween.

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For breakfast I busted out my new Bob’s 5 Grain cereal.

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I cooked it in my favorite little two cup cereal pot that my dad got me two years ago for Christmas. I seriously use this thing so often it never makes it to the dishwasher.

To my cereal I added flaked sweetened coconut and chopped frozen peaches.

I froze the peaches myself and I think I used a knife that I’d used to cut garlic when I sliced them before freezing. It adds an interesting and not particularly welcome taste to things – let that be a lesson to all of us. I have to use the garlic peaches, but hopefully no one else will face the same fate.

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My schedule this semester has been such that I don’t eat lunch on campus very often.  Today, though, I had a meeting that was necessary to verify that I’m going to graduate in May (whoooooohooooo), so I ate while grading Minitab assignments. (Minitab is a statistical version of Excel, basically, that the students in my class use to do projects).

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Leftover tofu, leftover creepy cauliflower, and toes desperately in need of nail polish remover.

I stopped on the way home to get pumpkins for the stoop, so trick-or-treaters would know they were welcome, but pumpkins are apparently passe in the grocery store. Christmas stockings are the new pumpkins. I got a big orange leaf sack with a pumpkin face on it instead, and we stuffed it with leaves from the yard.

Trick-or-treaters have been drizzling, not pouring. The Evil Flash Drive, who was here to steal our gigabytes, has been my fav so far.

Between homework and stopping Maida from trying to eat the little kids, I made falafel tacos.

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Falafel Tacos
Adapted from How to Cook Everything

Falafel:
1 can chickpeas
1/2 small onion
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 handful greens (arugula is what I used, but parsley/baby spinach/cilantro/whatev would all add something nice)
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Tzatziki:
3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
3/4 cup chopped, seeded peeled cucumber
1/2 cup chopped, seeded tomato
1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon salt

hummus
tortillas

Whiz everything in the ‘falafel’ section up in a food processor. It should be chopped finely enough that you look at it and go ‘damn, that would be a pain in the ass if I had to chop that by hand’, with a little bit of paste, but no finer. It’s better that it fall apart a little while cooking than it be tough and icky.

Mix the tzatziki ingredients together and set aside. Start with the smaller amount of salt and adjust to taste. (If it tastes more like yogurt than vegetables, you can probably use more salt).

Heat a nonstick pan up over medium-medium-low heat. If you feel like a little fat in your day, add a few little puddles of vegetable oil once the pan is hot – it will lead to crispier falafels but isn’t necessary. Either way, grab golf ball sized amounts of the falafel mix and flatten them out, then drop them in the pan and cook for 3 minutes on the first side and two on the second (or until brown and tasty looking on both sides). It will take two batches unless you have a griddle sized pan, so if you want to eat them hot, keep the falafels warm in a low oven while you cook the second batch.

Spread each tortilla with hummus and tzatziki, and top with falafel. Eat.

Serves 2 – 3. (We ate it all).

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Happy HALLOWEEN!! I think our candy-wanting-kids are done – it’s dark and cold and 8:30. We have lots of mini Snickers and M&Ms and Baby Ruth. Hopefully you all have leftover candy too!

it’s not very interesting being me this week

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

I went into this week with a series of very important tasks. I have a midterm tomorrow, a take home midterm due Friday, and three homework assignments due either tomorrow or Friday.

I have finished two of the assignments and most of the third, and begun to study for tomorrow’s exam.

The most interesting thing that has happened so far is the fact that yesterday my tenant emailed me to let me know he was distinctly lacking in the hot water department. I took a few minutes off of studying yesterday afternoon to pop over and see if I could relight the pilot – but there was a gigantic puddle of water under the heater. Turns out, that’s not a good sign.

I then took more time off of studying to go to Home Depot and pick out a new water heater. It’s being installed today by a man named Michael Myers.

I think that’s awesome.

That his name is Mike Myers, not that I had to buy a new water heater that I can’t really afford.

cherry oatmeal

Before the water heater debacle, I went to class – an endeavor fueled by stone ground oats mixed with cottage cheese and cherries. (The cherries were frozen, so I stuck a bunch in saucepan and cooked them down into an unsweeted jam over the weekend – that’s the big blob in the middle of the oats).

white bean and mushroom soup

Back home again, I finally finished the white bean and mushroom soup I made last week. I take my new not throwing food away rule very seriously – this soup is like a week old. It was still pretty good.

pluot

Afterwards, I wanted chocolate but settled for an enormous pluot.

brie and olives

Crockett got home at about 4 and hadn’t eaten lunch yet, so he made himself a monster sandwich – to keep my appetite in sync, I had a couple of pieces of bread with brie and a few olives.

SO DELICIOUS.

I don’t know why I don’t eat just cheese and bread all the time.

fish cakes

Oh, right, this is why I don’t.

White Fish Cakes
Based on Salmon Croquettes, from How To Cook Everything On-The-Go

2 small white fish fillets (I used flounder)
2 small russet potatoes
2 shallots
1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 egg
1/2 cup finely torn or chopped pieces of bread (crusts ok)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon melted butter

Prick the potatoes all over with a fork and microwave them for 7 minutes, stopping once to flip them over. Set aside to cool a little bit.

Pan fry the fish with a little salt in a non-stick pan over medium high heat. If you have thin fillets, it will take less than two minutes per side. Set aside.

Peel the potatoes and add them to a bowl in chunks. Finely chop or grate the shallots and garlic into the bowl, and then add the mustard, olive oil, and egg. Mash it all up.

Add the bread crumbs and the fish, and stir until the fish has broken up and is pretty evenly distributed. Form the mixture into six or seven palm size patties, and refrigerate until you’re ready for dinner.

When you’re ready to cook, heat your same non-stick pan over medium to medium low. Brush the patties on one side with melted butter (thinly) and add to the pan. Cook for 5 – 7 minutes, or until the bottom is nicely brown. Brush the exposed side with butter and flip, cooking until they’re warm through and the bottom browns again.

Serve with lemon wedges.

We ate ours with roasted asparagus and leftover brussels sprouts salad.

Mmmm.

Brain food.

tomato tomato

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

Tomato tomAHHto?

Over the weekend I didn’t feel very well. Crockett and I both ate something that didn’t agree with us, but that mofo bounced right back and I didn’t.

However, I had like four pounds of tomatoes, due to some poor planning on my part with regard to overlap between the grocery store and our local produce delivery.

Anyway, I made two things with tomatoes. Both were awesome. If I do say so myself. Which I do.

Tomato Cobber
Adapted from Lottie + Doof

1 tbs olive oil
1/2 white onion, thinly sliced (I used my Crockett-given mandoline which is the best motherfucking thing ever)
1/2 tsp salt
2 cloves garlic
8 – 12 oz cherry tomatoes (I had a quart of heirloom cherry tomatoes that weighed in at about 10 oz. You can probably go up to 20 oz or so if you want a high tomato to biscuit ratio.)
1 tbs all purpose flour
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
scant 1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 tbs unsalted butter, cold and cut into eight pieces
1/4 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese (1/2 oz – 1 oz)
4 tbs cold water

1. First, caramelize the heck out of the onion. (If you want to do the whole onion here and stick the rest in a baggie in the fridge or freezer, you don’t have to do this step next time! Good ideas from Emma that no one ever has thought of except for oh yeah everyone ever!)  Add the olive oil to a non-stick pan and turn the heat to medium-high. You can use a non-non-stick (sticky?) pan, but you’ll need more oil and I was trying to back off a little. Michigan gave me pounds, y’all. Add the sliced onion and the salt to the pan and when the onion starts to soften, turn the heat to medium low and cook for 20 – 40 minutes, stirring when you think of it. I actually added about a tsp of white sugar in there somewhere to help with the caramel – your patience will determine if you do or don’t have to do that. When you feel like the onions are almost done, mince the garlic and throw it in with the onions while they finish up.

2. When the onions are ready, toss them with the red pepper flakes, flour, and tomatoes. The tomatoes are raw and whole, here, and that is correct. Heat the oven to 375.

3. To make the topping, stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt and massage the butter in with your fingers until the texture of everything is sandy. Add the cheese and mix in, then add the water. (Lottie + Doof calls for heavy cream. If you use cream, you will get softer biscuits with a lighter cheese flavor. I like being able to taste the cheese and the crunchiness that comes from the water.)

4. Find a dish that holds the tomatoes in a double layer. Drop the biscuit dough in tablespoons sized clumps evenly on top, and throw the whole thing in the oven. Bake for a long ass time – 40 – 60 minutes. You can cover if if your dough starts to burn, ok?

Eat, happily.

Yes, that is cottage cheese behind the cobbler. It’s delicious, but acidic, and I wanted even more creamy cheeseyness. This is not a recommendation I would share with just anyone, guys, but this is a pretty good way to eat it – specially if the cobbler is hot and the cottage cheese is cold.

My second tomato experiment was Smitten Kitchen’s tomato pie.

I’ve made it before, exactly as written. Crockett said it was the best thing he ever ate, but it didn’t reheat very well and I wasn’t nuts about it. I mixed it up a little this time, using the cobbler as an inspiration. I made a top crust only, so there was nothing on the bottom to get soggy. Now? It’s the best thing I ever ate.

Tomato and Corn Pie
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

1/3 cup light mayonaisse
2 tbs lemon juice (Everyone always says fresh – screw it. If you have lemons on hand go ahead but use that stuff in the squeeze bottle if you want. I’ll back you.)
1 3/4 pounds beefsteak tomatoes
1 1/2 cups corn (from three ears or frozen, not canned), very coarsely chopped
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
5 ounces grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
1/2  tsp kosher salt, in addition to what’s above
1 tsp dried basil (if you didn’t kill your basil plant by leaving it alone in a window for 9 days, you can sub a tablespoon of fresh basil here, but dried is totally fine)
3 tbs unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
6 tbs cold water

1. Rub a little olive oil onto the base of an 8 x 8 casserole dish (or a deep dish pie plate, if you’re not ready for square pie). Heat your oven to 400 degrees.

2. Peel the tomatoes. (Blanch or freeze, either method works here.) Slice into half inch thick rounds and remove the seeds. Layer half the tomatoes in the base of your dish, sprinkle them with half the corn and half the cheese, and then 1/2 tsp of salt and 1/4 tsp of pepper. Repeat. Stir together the mayo and lemon juice and pour evenly over the top of the vegetables.

3. Make the biscuits by stirring together the flour, salt, baking powder, and basil. Rub in the butter as above, and stir in the water. Roll it out to roughly the size of your dish and plop it on top of the vegetables.

4. Bake for about 35 minutes, or until it’s bubbling all around the edges.

It will be wet – we ate it more like stew out of bowls than pie. That’s one of the reasons I hated the bottom crust.

Maybe it’s not the prettiest tomato dish on the block.

It’s surely the most delicious.

Just, do me a favor, ok? If you’re going to reheat it for more than one person, please do the reheating in the oven. It does take about half an hour at 300, but the microwave seems to bring all the textures closer to each other and remove some of what’s great about the dish. It’s still great from the microwave, so if you’re doing single portions carry on, but if you have the time and you’re serving it with salad or whatever for dinner, pop it in the oven, k?

And?

No one actually says tomAHHto.

Seriously.

the best thing I ever made

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011

Not according to me.

According to Crockett.

Seriously. He ate one of these scones and he said “these are the best thing you’ve ever made”. I said, “really?” He said, “yeah, definitely.” I said, “what about those BLATs I made that one time?” He gave it some serious thought, but he finally came down on the side of the scones.

These were the inspiration of the genius Joy the Baker. I made a few changes based on what I had on hand. The addition of whole wheat flour makes them a little heartier, and the almond flour makes them both more tender and higher in protein. The man ain’t lying – they’re delish.

Grapefruit Scones
Adapted from Joy the Baker

1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup almond flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt

6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter

1 large grapefruit
4 tablespoons sugar

1/2 cup plain yogurt
2 tablespoons agave nectar

  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Zest the grapefruit. If your boyfriend somehow misplaced your zester (or you did, but obviously THAT would never happen), you can use a sharp paring knife to cut very thin strips of zest and finely chop the strips. Peel and segment the grapefruit and set the pieces aside. (There are some good pictures on how to do that here if you haven’t tried before.)
  3. Mix the sugar and zest together and rub until the sugar is all moist.
  4. In a large bowl, stir together the dry ingredients and half the sugar from the previous step (with the zest in it). Cut the cold butter into pieces and rub it into the dry ingredients until no butter piece is larger than a pea.
  5. Add the yogurt and nectar and stir. When all the flour has been mixed in, add the grapefruit segments and knead until they’re well spread through the dough.
  6. Plop the dough onto a piece of parchment and shape into a circle about 8 inches in diameter. This is a wet dough, so it will be sticky.
  7. Add the remaining zest/sugar combo to the top of the scone circle and evenly distribute, then pat to make it stick. Cut the circle into eight pieces (like a pizza) and spread  the pieces out.
  8. Bake for 15 minutes.

They keep ok, but don’t stay crunchy. I recommend freezing whatever you won’t eat the first day and defrosting them in the oven when you’re ready (350 for 5-7 minutes).

You can SEE the crunch.

A scone and a blueberry yogurt for lunch?

Ok, fine, twist my damn arm why don’t you.