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Recipes

Warm Corn and Bean Salad

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Origin

I cooked too many kidney beans one day and needed to use the leftovers, so I made a variation of rice and beans with vegetables without the rice.

Ingredients

  • 400 grams cooked and rinsed kidney beans
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • 250 grams corn kernels
  • 1/2 green chili (optional)
  • 1/2 pimenton or other sweet red pepper
  • 1-2 teaspoons taco seasoning mix
  • 1 spring onion (scallion) – green part only
  • a few sprigs of coriander leaf (cilantro)
  • salt to taste

Process

Dice the onion finely. Heat the oil in a frying pan on medium-low and add the onion when it is warm. Cook the onion slowly until soft and beginning to brown, stirring frequently.

While the onion is cooking, chop the sweet pepper and the chili and set them aside. Chop the spring onion and mince the coriander leaf.

Add the sweet pepper and chili pepper to the onion. Cook until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the corn, kidney beans and taco seasoning. Adjust to taste with taco mix and salt. Cook just until the beans and corn are warmed through.

Serve garnished with the chopped coriander and spring onion.

Light Potato Cucumber Salad

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Origin

I tried a French salad which had a similar taste and tried to recreate it with significantly more cucumber and less potato.

Ingredients

  • 3-4 fingerling potatoes
  • 1 English cucumber
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • black pepper
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • salt

Process

Bring a small pot of salted water to boil. Boil the potatoes whole until they are soft, about 10 minutes. Rinse in cold water and set aside until cool.

Meanwhile, peel alternating strips off the cucumber and dice it. Mix it liberally with salt and set it in a strainer to drain.

In a bowl, mix together the yogurt, black pepper, rice vinegar and mustard and set aside.

When the potatoes are cool, dice them and mix them together with the cucumbers. Toss the potatoes and cucumbers with the yogurt mixture to lightly cover them.

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Date Muffins

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These muffins have whole wheat flour, wheat bran and butternut squash in them, but the primary taste is of dates. They are more easily removed from the papers when they are cool, but taste even better warm. These are not as sweet as cupcakes, but they are sweeter than bread.

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Origin

I used the recipe for brown soda bread as my starting point.

Ingredients

  • 350 grams (about 13 ounces) whole wheat flour
  • 60 grams (about 2 ounces) white flour
  • 3 tablespoons wheat bran
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup oil (I used peanut)
  • 4 tablespoons date syrup
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup butternut squash or pumpkin purée
  • 1 egg
  • 12 dates

For the topping:

  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Process

Preheat the oven to 160° Celsius/325° Fahrenheit. Line muffin tins with muffin papers. This recipe will make 18 muffins.

Mix together all the dry ingredients. Add the oil, syrup, buttermilk, egg and squash and stir until just mixed. Remove the date pits and tear them into pieces with your fingers, then mix them in the batter.

Scoop the batter into the muffin papers, filling about 3/4 full.

Mix together the cinnamon and sugar for the topping in a bowl. Sprinkle it on top of the muffins.

Bake the muffins for 30-35 minutes. Cool on a wire rack, or enjoy them warm with butter.

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These are best eaten the day they are made, or the next day at the latest.

Healthy Cabbage Mushroom Soup for Two

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Origin

I had no particular inspiration for this dish.

Ingredients

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 6 fresh sage leaves
  • 1 teaspoon oil (I used coconut)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 dried mu-err mushrooms (black fungus)
  • 4 chestnut mushrooms
  • 3 large (outer) Savoy cabbage leaves
  • 4 medium carrots
  • 1 tomato

Process

Set the mu-err mushrooms to soak in warm water. While they are soaking, dice the onion. Heat the oil on medium-low heat in a pot and put the onion in to soften. Slice the garlic and add it, the sage leaves, and the bay leaf to the pot. While the onion and herbs are cooking, dice the tomato and set it aside. Dice the carrots and set them aside as well.

When the onion is soft, turn down the heat to low and add the tomato. Let it cook down until it has completely broken apart, stirring from time to time. Meanwhile, trim the chestnut mushrooms and cut them into quarters before setting them aside. Cut the cabbage into ribbons, removing any especially tough stems. Set the cabbage aside with the chestnut mushrooms.

Deglaze the pot with a bit of warm water. Add the carrots and nutritional yeast, a bit of salt, and sufficient water to cover the carrots. Turn up the heat and let it come to a boil, then turn down the heat to allow it to simmer.

Drain and rinse the mu-err mushrooms. Remove any thick fleshy bits, then dice them and add them to the pan with the carrots. Allow to simmer without a lid for 10-15 minutes.

Remove the sage leaves and add the chestnut mushrooms and the cabbage. The liquid should cover the carrots and mushrooms but need not cover the cabbage; add extra water if needed. Allow to simmer with a lid for 15-25 minutes, until the cabbage is soft. Add the Worcestershire sauce and adjust salt to taste. Remove the bay leaf before serving.

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Blue Cheese-Pesto Pasta with Okra

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Origin

I used this recipe as my starting point.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 teaspoon cooking oil
  • 10 okra
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 100 grams pasta (uncooked weight)
  • 50 grams blue cheese (I used Cashel Blue)
  • 2 teaspoons pesto
  • salt to taste

Process

Bring water to boil for the pasta. While it is heating, wash the okra and trim off the ends, then slice them in half lengthwise. Heat a frying pan on medium and lightly brush it with oil.

Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the package. While the pasta is cooking, pan-fry the okra. Cook for 2 minutes on high, cut side down, then reduce the heat to medium and cook for an additional four minutes before turning them over. Cook an additional 4 minutes at medium heat, then add the lemon juice and toss to mix.

Drain the pasta and return it to the pan. Add the blue cheese and stir until it has melted. Add the pesto and okra to the pasta and stir well, then salt to taste.

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Serves 1.

Whole Wheat Date Scones

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Origin

I used this recipe as my starting point.

Ingredients

  • 200 grams whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons wheat germ
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 50 grams unsalted butter
  • 130 ml milk
  • 4 dried dates
  • a bit of egg

Process

Dice the butter and set it aside. Mix the flour, wheat germ, baking powder, sugar and salt together in a bowl.

Remove the date pit and chop the dates. Set them aside.

Work the butter through the flour mix with your fingers until it is fine and crumbly. Mix in the date pieces, working them around until they are distributed through the flour instead of clumped together. Add the milk slowly while blending until the dough forms a ball. Knead the dough slightly, then put the bowl in the fridge to chill.

Heat the oven to 220° Celcius/430° Fahrenheit.

Put parchment paper on a baking tray. If you have a round cutter, you can roll out the dough and cut out the scones. Otherwise, divide the dough in six pieces and roll each into a ball, then flatten the ball on the baking tray. Brush the tops with beaten egg.

Bake for 10-12 minutes and eat warm or allow them to cool on a wire rack.

These scones are only slightly sweet.

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Lemon Kale Soup

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Origin

This soup was influenced by asheh hooboobaat and blackeyed pea and chard stew.

Ingredients

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • one medium onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 100 grams kale
  • 1 handful parsley
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 400 grams (cooked weight) butter beans
  • juice from 1/2 lemon

Process

Heat the oil on medium heat in a deep pot. Dice the onion and garlic and add it to the pot. Reduce heat and cook on low until the onion is soft.

While the onion and garlic are cooking, cut the kale into ribbons, removing any thick stalks.

Dice the parsley roughly and set it aside.

Add the turmeric to the onions. Add enough water to cover the onions, then add the kale and beans. Add enough water for the ingredients to move freely. Simmer on medium until the kale is cooked, then season with salt and pepper.

Remove from the heat and mix in the parsley and lemon juice.