Friday, August 12, 2011

Creamy Greens Soup

Creamy Greens Soup
I have an ARC of Quick-Fix Veganby Robin Robertson, and will be trying a few recipes from it to aid my review of the cookbook for NetGalley.

I expected it to be great. Robin Robertson is my favorite vegan cookbook guru, consistently creating recipes that are tasty even to people who haven't gone without meat for a long time. This recipe was no exception. I used all kale for the greens, and doubled up on the garlic, the greens, and the broth, but kept the coconut milk and onion the same. So it is *almost* the recipe from the book (this happened on accident... I added more greens than I was supposed to and then had to fix it). I also added a cup and a half of cooked cannellini beans that were indicated as an option in the recipe for a heartier, meal-type soup. This recipe scared me halfway through when I tasted it, right after adding the coconut milk and the greens had just finished cooking - it had a weird sweetness and I was worried, but the last simmer brought all the flavors together, and it was delicious.

This is a great recipe for people who have more greens than they know what to do with! I can't get enough greens. I'd love to try this recipe again with radish greens, which just happen to be my favorite.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Summer Tapas

Spanish Feast
Sometimes on the weekend I get these crazy ideas and just go for it. Spending a few hours in the kitchen can be so really invigorating. I knew we would be going to the farmer's market downtown, and that we wanted to try seafood from a place that has local catches. The last time we were there they had shrimp, so that figured into this. I also had been talking to a friend about tinto de verano, a combination of tembranillo and gaseosa that is often served at lunch in Spain, and is mixed by each person at the table to their own proportions.

The tortilla after flipping
One recipe I've been intrigued by for a long time, in several different manifestations, is the idea of using potato chips in a tortilla, a traditional Spanish egg dish that can be served warm or at room temperature. The idea is often credited to Ferran Adria (and that is the recipe I used, but I remember something similar in Around My French Tableby Dorie Greenspan. So... while I bought potatoes home, thinking I might try it the traditional way, the overwhelming idea of making four dishes including the very work-intensive tortilla won me over to the cheater way.

Inside of Spanish tortilla
I've never had a traditional tortilla, so I don't know how this compares, but I thought this was delicious. I carmelized a thin (Spanish! ha) onion earlier in the day and mixed it in with the egg-soaked chips before baking, and that did add a lot of flavor. But can you tell you are looking at potato chips? They aren't crunchy any longer at this point anyway.

We will have leftovers for a week, but with the sultry weather and the local ingredients, this was a fantastic meal.

Recipes I used:

Potato Chip Tortilla
Gambas al ajillo (Shrimp in Garlic)
Queso de Cabra con Tomate (Goat Cheese Baked in Tomato Sauce) (Actually I just throw stuff together for this one)
Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini Sauce from Olives and Oranges

Saturday, July 30, 2011


Palak Paneer
One of my culinary resolutions for 2011 is to make cheese. I decided to try my hand at making paneer from scratch. Paneer is a cheese most often found in Indian dishes - it is a fresh cheese (rather than aged), but firm in a way that won't melt.

And all it is - whole milk and lemon juice. It was like magic. Boil the milk, add lemon juice until the milk curdles, let it strain, press it down, and voila - a few hours later - cheese.

I will definitely be doing that again.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Salad Duo

Salad Duo
Shredded Kale with Lemon and Parmesan from my friend Melody (originally from Weight Watchers), and Gingered Beet and Field Pea Salad from Simple, Fresh, Southern by the Lee Bros.

I didn't have a shallot, so I used one big garlic clove in the kale salad, and let it hang out in the fridge to mellow a bit. I also used four kinds of kale plus a few leaves of radish greens, just whatever looked good in the garden.

The goat cheese in the second salad is added by me, since I had made the recipe before and I thought it needed something like that to balance it out.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Huevos Rancheros

I haven't ever had huevos rancheros, and I get the impression that the recipe I used from Good Housekeeping was a healthy take on it - but who cares, it was delicious! I used the leftover bean/tomato/onion mixture in a taco salad the next day.

Saturday, June 18, 2011


From Jenny Also Cooks

I started with the recipe from Vegan Planet but added feta so this is NOT vegan. I also had no tomato, so I left it out. Delicious, fresh, and filling.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Garlic Scape Pesto

From Gardening

This is the first year we have tried growing garlic, and just as we were pleasantly surprised by chive blossoms, garlic scapes were a completely new phenomenon to us. A few weeks before garlic is ready to be harvested, new shoots come out of the plant and curl around, and a blossom starts to form. If you harvest these off before they bloom, they can be a tasty treat. Please see our gardening blog for information on harvesting the garlic scape.

I originally had thoughts to just saute some up so we could really taste them, but then I came across a pesto recipe and decided to go that direction instead, not knowing how powerful the scape would be. I got the recipe idea from a video posted by Grow! Cook! Eat!, although I will post what I actually did below since I didn't follow their recipe exactly.

From Gardening

Garlic Scape Pesto
6-8 garlic scapes, roughly chopped
1/3 cup toasted hazelnuts, skins rubbed off as much as possible
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp kosher salt
olive oil

Whirl the scapes in a food processor until evenly and finely chopped. Add hazelnuts (any nut, but that's what we had!), cheese, and salt until combined. Leave processor on and pour olive oil in a steady thin stream until it is the texture you desire. We leave it somewhat chunky (and less oily) and just thin it out with pasta water; it is a little healthier that way.

We tossed about half the recipe with a pound of pasta and some fresh snow peas, because that was what was on hand.

Actually, I used about double this many scapes, and that was super sharp garlic overkill, so I'd recommend less!!! I'm going to try baking the rest on fish or in a pizza and see if that mellows out the sharpness a bit. Scapes are not shy!!