February 5, 2012
This is a nice little soup I made this morning because I only have cabbage in my fridge. When I was in Greece last summer, we ate mostly beans cooked in a variety of ways, but always with olive oil and oregano.
Since I used dried chickpeas, I had to start the night before. You could use canned chickpeas, but I find that the flavor is not as nice and they have a lot more salt.
Yield: About 3 servings, depending on what you consider a serving.
- 1 cup dried chickpeas or 2 cups cooked/canned
- 1/2 cup onion (any variety), chopped into large chunks
- 3 1/2 cups water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil (or about 3-4 fresh basil leaves, torn up)
- a dash of salt
If you’re using dried chickpeas, soak them the night before in 3 cups of water. In the morning, rinse them (if you’re using canned, rinse those as well) and add 3 1/2 cups of water and the onions. Simmer them for about 30 minutes in a pot with the lid on but tilted (even if it has a steam hole), then stir in the oil and seasonings. Let it simmer for another 15 minutes, or until the beans are the texture you prefer. Consume.
September 2, 2011
I never order lettuce wraps because lots of cheapskate restaurants think iceberg counts as lettuce — and I don’t really relish the idea of something like that falling apart. Here are some “lettuce” wraps I make using Swiss Chard, which is somewhere between baby spinach and bok choy. Like other dark, leafy greens, chard gives the most nutrients if you wilt it before eating, but raw it has a great texture and just enough strength to hold a small amount of vegetables easily.
Quick “Lettuce” Wraps
PER wrap (2 wraps are a light lunch for 1 average-sized female):
- 1 leaf of fresh raw Swiss Chard, washed, shaken out, and halved lengthwise along the spine
- 1 Tbsp cream cheese, softened
- 1-2 Tbsp spicy hummus (see below)
- About 2 Tbsp (or 1/6 of 1 large) carrot, shaved in thin strips using a vegetable peeler or chopped super thin
- 1/2 tomato, chopped fairly small (the chard is thick, so it’s ok if this looks a little wet)
- optional items: sliced olives; 1 very-thin slice red onion or sweet yellow onion; small pinch of black pepper
Spread cheese and hummus halfway along chard leaf. Arrange veggies on top. Roll inward, from leaf edge toward leaf spine. Optional: affix wrap to itself with a toothpick and an olive.
1 15-oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 can uncooked or pre-cooked black beans (I use the Cuban style ones from Trader Joe’s)
1/4+ c sunflower butter
1/4 c olive oil
1/8 c fresh lemon juice
1/8 – 1/4 c light vinegar such as rice vinegar, apple cider vinegar, or both together
2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp dried cilantro
1/2 – 1 tsp chili powder
1/2 – 1 tsp cumin
1/2 – 1 tsp Mexican hot sauce
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse, scraping frequently, until fully combined.
As necessary, while mixing:
Add in up to 1/8 cup water – adjust until hummus reaches preferred texture.
Add salt and extra garlic, lemon juice, vinegar and spices to taste. Note: the garlic and hot sauce can increase slightly in spiciness as the hummus is stored in the fridge, so do not start out overwhelmingly spicy.
August 23, 2011
Simple and filling but light. Matt’s mom makes these. Adapted from Simple Vegetarian Pleasures by Jeanne Lemlin. Serves: 4.
Summer Spinach, Roasted Red Pepper, and Corn Enchiladas
- 1 c lowfat cottage cheese, pureed until perfectly smooth
(I just use ricotta instead)
- 1 10-oz box frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed out
using a serving spoon and a strainer or colander
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion, minced
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 1/2 c frozen corn, thawed (1 small can, or a jar of the roasted stuff from Trader Joe’s)
- 1 7-oz jar roasted red peppers, patted dry and diced (about 1 c diced)
- 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp fresh (or 2 tsp from-a-jar) jalapeno pepper, minced superfine (optional)
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- Butter for greasing dish
- 8 8-in wheat flour tortillas
- 1 1/4 c mild or medium salsa
- 1/2 c heavy cream or half-and-half
- 1/4 c milk (for thicker sauce, replace the cream and milk with 1/4 c ricotta + 1/2 c water. Add more water if necessary to get it about the consistency of a salad dressing – closer to Thousand Island than to Italian)
- 1 1/4 c grated Monterey Jack cheese (use up to 2 c if necessary. I do half some other cheese – cheddar, Pepper Jack, whatever’s around)
Scrape ricotta / pureed cottage cheese into a medium bowl. Place spinach in a strainer and press out all its liquid. Set spinach aside.
Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and saute ~10 min, stirring frequently, until golden-edged and soft. OPTIONAL: Add corn at the same time as onion, and set the heat a little high so both will cook together and the corn will blacken up a bit. When onion is cooked fairly well, add cumin and cook 2 min, stirring, until toasted.
Stir in spinach and cook 2 more min, tossing and stirring. Let mix cool, then stir in cottage cheese along with remaining filling ingredients (filling can be prepared and chilled 24 hours in advance).
Preheat oven to 375. Butter a 9 x 13-in baking dish, or 2 smaller similar baking dishes. If tortillas seem dry, use a pastry brush to dampen edges with water. Divide spinach mix into 8 portions; place a portion along the bottom edge of each tortilla, and roll tightly. Place each enchilada on the counter as you complete it.
To make the sauce, combine salsa, cream, and milk in a small, 2+ c bowl. Spoon a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of the baking dish. Carefully, to avoid spilling filling, place the enchiladas in the dish, then spoon on the remaining sauce. Sprinkle some cheese along each enchilada (may be prepared to this point up to 8 hours in advance Cover and chill if longer than 1 hour, and bring to room temp before baking). Cover with aluminum foil and bake 25 min. Remove the cover and bake 5 more minutes, until golden and bubbly. Let sit 5 min before serving.
March 14, 2011
I made the 3rd version over the weekend for my lunch today. On top of wilted spinach with sauteed onions and toasted walnuts, it was pretty great but a little over-sweet, so I’ve adapted it below (original recipe, Option A, was from: Modern Spice by Monica Bhide). The 3rd option came out to a nice, juicy softness with a bit of firmness and just a hint of crispiness on the outside.
Mix the following ingredients in a small jar and keep stored in the fridge until you need it:
- 2 Tbsp fresh ginger root, peeled and grated to a pulp (on the small grater that looks like someone tried to punch their way out of it using a ballpoint pen)
- 1/4 cup warmed liquid honey (microwave on 1/2 power for 15 seconds, no cap!)
- 3 tsp red chili flakes, or 1 1/2 tsp good cayenne pepper
- 1 Tbsp pomegranate molasses (find at Mediterranean and Middle-Eastern stores / cafes)
- 1 Tbsp olive or peanut oil
- 1/2 tsp grated lemon/lime zest
- juice of 1/2 lemon (2 or 3 tsp)
The Other Ingredients:
- 1 medium size eggplant* sliced in 3/4″ to 1″ discs
- 1 package fresh spinach (normal salad-bag size)
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped to 1/2″ size bits
- 2 smaller cloves garlic, or 1 big one, smashed & minced
- 2 Tbsp small-chopped walnuts
- 2 Tbsp butter
- Warmed Jalapeno bread or spicy-garlic naan (or just 2 c cooked plain rice)
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