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Monthly Archives: October 2012

Ratatouille on the Run

Ah, too many vegetables and not enough time to eat them all before we go on a little vacation. Eh voila! Epicurious to the rescue…ok…if you skip the cheese it would be great alone…. I served this with a nice rack of lamb….

Ratatouille on the Run (Epicurious.Com)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 large eggplant (unpeeled), diced
  • 2 green bell peppers, diced
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 large zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cactus pads diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil or 1 tablespoon dried
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 ounces goat cheese or Muenster cheese or a mixture of the two, diced (optional)

Preparation

Heat oil in heavy large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add garlic; stir 1 minute. Add eggplant, green bell peppers, tomatoes, onion, zucchini and basil. Sauté 5 minutes. Cover and simmer until all vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes. Uncover pot and simmer until juice thickens, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Mix in vinegar; season to taste with salt and pepper.(Can be prepared 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread ratatouille in 9-inch-diameter pie dish. Sprinkle with cheese, if desired. ( I added the cheese just before serving). Bake until heated through, about 20 minutes.
Read More http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Ratatouille-on-the-Run-517#ixzz29wkHJuwF

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Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili with Quinoa

This recipe came to me via my friend’s blog “Learning Nutrition with Me“. The link is at the bottom of the page you are viewing.

Since you know we eat a lot of quinoa, and we had the beans and sweet potatoes, I decided to give it a try. It was great!!

As always, my changes are in red!

Black Bean, Sweet Potato, and Quinoa Chili with Smoked Chipotle (via LNWM)

Prep time:  10 mins  Cook time:  30 mins Serves: 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 medium carrots, diced small
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon Smoked Chipotle Tabasco sauce ( I just used regular Tabasco since I did not have the chipotle version)
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 can (15.5 oz) low-sodium tomato sauce
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa (this made it really thick, so adjust downwards)
  • 2 can black beans (15.5 oz), drained (I left the juice in there)
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable stock, plus more to thin if desired
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced into small cubes

Chipotle Creme:

  • 1 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons Smoked Chipotle Tabasco sauce, plus more if desired
  • ½ teaspoon honey
  • ¼ teaspoon dijon mustard

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in  a medium pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, carrots and salt; saute for 5 minutes or until onions become translucent.
  2. Add the entire can of tomato sauce to the pot. Next add the black beans, vegetarian broth, all spices, and quinoa. Bring to a boil; reduce the heat to medium, add diced sweet potatoes. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
  3. Make the smoked chipotle yogurt  – combine tabasco sauce, honey, and dijon mustard in a medium bowl.
  4. Spoon chili into bowls and add yogurt sauce on top. Enjoy!

Creamy Curried Pumpkin Soup

If you have never visited the Kraft Foods site on the Internet, you are missing alot! They  have now created a new APP for those who know what this is – iFood Assistant. iFood is voice activated so that you say what you are looking for and then they give you a variety of recipes. It even allows you to create a shopping list for that recipe.

Anyways…it is Fall or Autumn whatever you wish to call it. We love all of the root vegetables found in Canada and the US, BUT we cannot find many of them here in Mexico. At one time we could get spaghetti squash,  acorn squash and butternut. Those days are over, as the locals don’t usually eat any of the above. They do get pumpkins (sometimes pumpkin pie filling) and zucchini, but NO parsnips, turnips, etc. Occasionally we get patty pans at Costco or a small version of buttercup…. This is pretty much what we see locally –

Slim squash pickings

In my despair today I decided to use the last can of pumpkin and make soup! I was inspired by Larry buying a helmet squash (whatever that is in Spanish) which he baked and cut up to put in the freezer for WINTER! I thought if this recipe worked I could use his pumpkin/squash to make more… So here it is-

Creamy Curried Pumpkin Soup (Kraft Foods 2009)

1 Tbsp.  olive oil

1 small  onion, finely chopped

1 can  (29 oz.) pumpkin

1 can  (14 oz.) chicken broth

2 cups  water

3 Tbsp.  brown sugar

¾ tsp.  curry powder

½ tsp.  salt

4 oz.  (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, cubed

HEAT oil in large saucepan on medium heat. Add onion; cook and stir 3 min. or until crisp-tender.

STIR in remaining ingredients except cream cheese until well blended. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low.

ADD cream cheese; cook until cream cheese is completely melted and mixture is well blended, beating constantly with wire whisk.

Serve with freshly grated nutmeg.

*You know I can’t resist some suggestions, such as……maybe add a little corn OR saute some sliced carrots with the onions OR sauteed red pepper strips…you get the idea! Maybe slices of radishes sauteed with the onions….

By the way…it was great. We each had two bowls (the entire recipe)…

For more info on summer and winter squash, check out this site – http://whatscookingamerica.net/squash.htm

Emeril Lagasse’s Cabbage Rolls and Sauce

Since we were headed off to a Canadian Thanksgiving dinner, I decided to make these cabbage rolls. I ended up making 36 rolls using a small and a slightly larger head of cabbage. There was no sauce left over to pour over them, so I used a recipe from my ex-wife, which appears at the bottom. I served this to spoon over the baked rolls.

Emeril Lagasse’s Cabbage Rolls

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons butter
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onions
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 (28-ounce) can chopped tomatoes and their juices
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 large head cabbage, cored and scalded in hot water until soft and easy to separate
  • 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onions
  • 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground sirloin
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1 1/2 cups par-boiled long-grain white rice
  • 2 eggs, beaten slightly
  • 2 teaspoons Essence, recipe follows
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions (Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F)

To make the sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and chicken stock. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the vinegar and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and adjust the seasoning, to taste.

Separate the cabbage leaves and remove the hard spine from each leaf. Spread on paper towels and pat dry. Set aside.

To make the stuffing, in a medium skillet melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until very wilted and starting to caramelize, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, and cook, stirring, until for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.

Lay the cabbage leaves, rib side down, on a flat work surface. Remove rib or shave down leaf to make leaf easy to roll.

In a large bowl, combine the beef, pork, rice, eggs, Essence, salt, pepper, and cooked onions. Mix well with a heavy wooden spoon or your hands.

Line a large baking dish or roaster with remaining cabbage leaves.

One at a time, spoon the filling into the center of the cabbage leaves, about 1/4 cup in each, depending upon the size of the leaves. Roll each into a neat cylinder and place in a single layer in the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining ingredients, stacking the cabbage packages, as necessary. Pour sauce over the rolls, cover tightly with aluminum foil, and bake until the meat is cooked through and the rolls are tender, about 2 hours.

Remove from the oven and serve the rolls with any remaining sauce spooned over the top, if desired.

Sauce for Cabbage Rolls or Meatloaf or Grape Leaves!

1 can tomato soup

1 egg

1 T sugar

2 T regular mustard

1 T vinegar

1 T butter

Blend these all together and heat slowly in the microwave.