December 10, 2012


Oxtail Ragu
When experimenting with interesting meat and different cuts, sometimes, you have to give up one thing to get a completely new dish. I originally wanted to do a rabbit ragu but couldn’t find any rabbit at any butcher shop so went for the oxtail instead. Oxtail can be somewhat bland so you have to make sure you season it properly. 
Ingredients:
1 lb oxtail
1 lb stew beef, cut into large chunks
1/2 kobocha squash, deseeded and peeled, cut into large chunks
1 red onion, medium diced
1 serrano pepper, chopped
2 stalks celery, medium choipped
2 large carrots, cut into large chunks
1 turnip, cut into large chunks
1 glass red wine
4 cups chicken stock
4 tablespoons butter
1 block Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon flour
2 bay leaves
Sprig fresh rosemary, leaves picked off and coarsely chopped
Sprig fresh thyme, leaves picked off and chopped
1 lb linguine
1 orange, zested
1 bunch fresh parsley
Salt and pepper
To Make:
Season the meat on all sides with salt and pepper. 
Heat up some olive oil to a large pot and sear the meat on all sides for a couple minutes on high heat just to get a nice browned side, not cooked through. Remove the meat with tongs and set aside. 
Add a bit more oil if necessary and add in the vegetables, serrano pepper, thyme, rosemary, and bay leaves. Cook for 10 minutes on medium-low heat , stirring occasionally. 
Add the meat and flour, stir everything together. Add the wine and 1/4 of the orange zest. Also, add a good pinch of salt and pepper. Stir. Pour in the stock. Add a bit more if the meat and vegetables aren’t just covered. 
Bring to boil, cover with a lid, and turn heat to medium-low. Cook like this for 3 1/2 - 4 hours. If the stew bubbles over, lower the heat a bit and cover with lid slightly askew. 
When the meat is tender and falling apart, fish out the oxtail, and pull the meat off the bones and put back in the stew. Discard the bones. Also, pull out the bay leaves. 
Add in most of the orange zest, the butter, and a good handful of shredded Parmesan cheese. Taste and if needed, add more salt and pepper. 
Cook pasta in a separate pot, and when al dente, add to the meat stew. 
Stir everything together, add fresh chopped parsley and some orange zest on top, and serve.
Enjoy with fresh bread!
Hearty and delicious!

Oxtail Ragu

When experimenting with interesting meat and different cuts, sometimes, you have to give up one thing to get a completely new dish. I originally wanted to do a rabbit ragu but couldn’t find any rabbit at any butcher shop so went for the oxtail instead. Oxtail can be somewhat bland so you have to make sure you season it properly. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb oxtail
  • 1 lb stew beef, cut into large chunks
  • 1/2 kobocha squash, deseeded and peeled, cut into large chunks
  • 1 red onion, medium diced
  • 1 serrano pepper, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, medium choipped
  • 2 large carrots, cut into large chunks
  • 1 turnip, cut into large chunks
  • 1 glass red wine
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 block Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Sprig fresh rosemary, leaves picked off and coarsely chopped
  • Sprig fresh thyme, leaves picked off and chopped
  • 1 lb linguine
  • 1 orange, zested
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper

To Make:

  1. Season the meat on all sides with salt and pepper. 
  2. Heat up some olive oil to a large pot and sear the meat on all sides for a couple minutes on high heat just to get a nice browned side, not cooked through. Remove the meat with tongs and set aside. 
  3. Add a bit more oil if necessary and add in the vegetables, serrano pepper, thyme, rosemary, and bay leaves. Cook for 10 minutes on medium-low heat , stirring occasionally. 
  4. Add the meat and flour, stir everything together. Add the wine and 1/4 of the orange zest. Also, add a good pinch of salt and pepper. Stir. Pour in the stock. Add a bit more if the meat and vegetables aren’t just covered. 
  5. Bring to boil, cover with a lid, and turn heat to medium-low. Cook like this for 3 1/2 - 4 hours. If the stew bubbles over, lower the heat a bit and cover with lid slightly askew. 
  6. When the meat is tender and falling apart, fish out the oxtail, and pull the meat off the bones and put back in the stew. Discard the bones. Also, pull out the bay leaves. 
  7. Add in most of the orange zest, the butter, and a good handful of shredded Parmesan cheese. Taste and if needed, add more salt and pepper. 
  8. Cook pasta in a separate pot, and when al dente, add to the meat stew. 
  9. Stir everything together, add fresh chopped parsley and some orange zest on top, and serve.
  10. Enjoy with fresh bread!

Hearty and delicious!

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December 6, 2012


Turkey Zucchini Burgers
Ingredients:
1 lb ground turkey
1 large zucchini, coarsely grated
3 green onions, chopped
Small handful fresh mint, chopped
Small handful fresh cilantro, chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt and pepper ~ about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon each
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon worchester sauce
1 egg
To Make:
Preheat oven to 425
Mix all the ingredients together and form into small/medium sized patties.
Heat up some olive oil in a large pan and sear the burgers on each side for 2 minutes without moving so they get browned. 
Transfer burgers to sheet tray and add cheese slices on top of the burgers. Pop in the oven for 6-7 minutes.
Build your burgers according to preference.
Enjoy!

Turkey Zucchini Burgers

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 large zucchini, coarsely grated
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • Small handful fresh mint, chopped
  • Small handful fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt and pepper ~ about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon each
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon worchester sauce
  • 1 egg

To Make:

  1. Preheat oven to 425
  2. Mix all the ingredients together and form into small/medium sized patties.
  3. Heat up some olive oil in a large pan and sear the burgers on each side for 2 minutes without moving so they get browned. 
  4. Transfer burgers to sheet tray and add cheese slices on top of the burgers. Pop in the oven for 6-7 minutes.
  5. Build your burgers according to preference.
  6. Enjoy!

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November 30, 2012


Roasted Yams with Figs and Balsamic Glaze
Ingredients:
2 large yams
Small bunch green onions
1 teaspoon chili flakes
6 figs, cut into halves and quarters
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
To Make:
Preheat oven to 475
Scrub the yams and cut them into wedges, about 8 per yam.
Spread out on a baking sheet, drizzle over with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 25 minutes.
Cut the green onions into inch-long segments. 
In a small frying pan, heat up some oil and throw in the green onions with the chili flakes. Saute for 4 minutes, until softened. Set aside and mix with yams when they are out of the oven. 
Heat up the balsamic vinegar and sugar in a small pan. Bring to boil, turn heat down and simmer for 3 minutes, until thickened. Allow to cool. 
In a large bowl, mix together the yams, green onions, and figs. Drizzle over with balsamic glaze. Toss together. 
Season if needed. 
Enjoy!
Easy side dish with exciting twists. 

Roasted Yams with Figs and Balsamic Glaze

Ingredients:

  • 2 large yams
  • Small bunch green onions
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 6 figs, cut into halves and quarters
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

To Make:

  1. Preheat oven to 475
  2. Scrub the yams and cut them into wedges, about 8 per yam.
  3. Spread out on a baking sheet, drizzle over with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 25 minutes.
  4. Cut the green onions into inch-long segments. 
  5. In a small frying pan, heat up some oil and throw in the green onions with the chili flakes. Saute for 4 minutes, until softened. Set aside and mix with yams when they are out of the oven. 
  6. Heat up the balsamic vinegar and sugar in a small pan. Bring to boil, turn heat down and simmer for 3 minutes, until thickened. Allow to cool. 
  7. In a large bowl, mix together the yams, green onions, and figs. Drizzle over with balsamic glaze. Toss together. 
  8. Season if needed. 
  9. Enjoy!

Easy side dish with exciting twists. 

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November 28, 2012


Mushroom and Leek Stroganoff
Ingredients:
1 lb brown crimini mushrooms
1 large leek
1/3 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 fresh rosemary stalk, leaves picked and chopped coarsely 
2 fresh thyme stalks, leaves picked and chopped
1 tablespoon of butter
1/2 lb linguine pasta
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
To Make:
Wash and slice the mushrooms. 
Cut the tough green part of the leek off and discard. Cut the leek in half lengthwise and run under cold water at an angle so all the dirt can run off. Gently press your fingers into the grooves to remove hidden dirt. VERY important so as not to get gritty food. 
Chop leek into 1/4 inch thick slices.
Boil a pot of salted water for the pasta. Once boiling add pasta and begin working on sauce. The pasta will cook while you make the sauce.
In a large pan, heat up some olive oil on medium-high and drop in the mushrooms. Allow them to brown by not moving them too much. Season with salt and pepper. Add in the rosemary and thyme and stir. 
Once mushrooms are browned, add the leeks. Turn heat down to medium. Cook for a few minutes until they have softened. 
Add in the chicken stock and allow to reduce almost all the way. Add butter and stir. 
Add in the sour cream and heavy cream, and stir. Once incorporated, turn heat to low.
Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. 
Add the noodles directly from the pot to the pan and incorporate. 
Enjoy!
This is a great vegetarian alternative to beef stroganoff. 

Mushroom and Leek Stroganoff

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb brown crimini mushrooms
  • 1 large leek
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock
  • 1 fresh rosemary stalk, leaves picked and chopped coarsely 
  • 2 fresh thyme stalks, leaves picked and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 1/2 lb linguine pasta
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

To Make:

  1. Wash and slice the mushrooms. 
  2. Cut the tough green part of the leek off and discard. Cut the leek in half lengthwise and run under cold water at an angle so all the dirt can run off. Gently press your fingers into the grooves to remove hidden dirt. VERY important so as not to get gritty food. 
  3. Chop leek into 1/4 inch thick slices.
  4. Boil a pot of salted water for the pasta. Once boiling add pasta and begin working on sauce. The pasta will cook while you make the sauce.
  5. In a large pan, heat up some olive oil on medium-high and drop in the mushrooms. Allow them to brown by not moving them too much. Season with salt and pepper. Add in the rosemary and thyme and stir. 
  6. Once mushrooms are browned, add the leeks. Turn heat down to medium. Cook for a few minutes until they have softened. 
  7. Add in the chicken stock and allow to reduce almost all the way. Add butter and stir. 
  8. Add in the sour cream and heavy cream, and stir. Once incorporated, turn heat to low.
  9. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. 
  10. Add the noodles directly from the pot to the pan and incorporate. 
  11. Enjoy!

This is a great vegetarian alternative to beef stroganoff. 

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November 13, 2012


Cauliflower, Walnut, and Pomegranate Salad
Ingredients:
1 head cauliflower
2 celery stalks
5 tablespoons toasted walnuts
1 pomegranate
Olive oil
Small bunch fresh parsley
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup
Salt and pepper
To Make:
Cut the cauliflower into florets and roast for 35 minutes at 425 degrees. Seasoned with salt, pepper, and olive oil before roasting.
In a small pan, on medium-high heat toss the walnuts a few times until they begin to toast. About 3 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside. 
Chop the celery on an angle to create long slices. 
Cut the pomegranate in half and in the sink, over a big bowl, use the back of a spoon to gently hit the seeds out of the shell into the bowl. 
in a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons olive oil with the vinegar, cinnamon, allspice, and maple syrup. 
In a large salad bowl, mix cauliflower, celery, pomegranate seeds, and chopped parsley. Stir in the dressing and walnuts, mix. 
Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve. 
Enjoy!
This was inspired by a recipe in Jerusalem but I changed a few things. 

Cauliflower, Walnut, and Pomegranate Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 5 tablespoons toasted walnuts
  • 1 pomegranate
  • Olive oil
  • Small bunch fresh parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup
  • Salt and pepper

To Make:

  1. Cut the cauliflower into florets and roast for 35 minutes at 425 degrees. Seasoned with salt, pepper, and olive oil before roasting.
  2. In a small pan, on medium-high heat toss the walnuts a few times until they begin to toast. About 3 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside. 
  3. Chop the celery on an angle to create long slices. 
  4. Cut the pomegranate in half and in the sink, over a big bowl, use the back of a spoon to gently hit the seeds out of the shell into the bowl. 
  5. in a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons olive oil with the vinegar, cinnamon, allspice, and maple syrup. 
  6. In a large salad bowl, mix cauliflower, celery, pomegranate seeds, and chopped parsley. Stir in the dressing and walnuts, mix. 
  7. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve. 
  8. Enjoy!

This was inspired by a recipe in Jerusalem but I changed a few things. 

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November 12, 2012


Sunday Roasted Chicken with Veggies

Ingredients:

  • 1 3-4 lb chicken
  • Bunch fresh rosemary
  • Bunch fresh dill
  • Bunch fresh parsley
  • 1 large lemon
  • 1 parsnip
  • Small bunch organic or garden variety carrots
  • 3 stalks celery
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 shallot
  • 1 bulb garlic
  • 1 turnip
  • 1 lb brussel sprouts
  • 1 lb baby red and yukon potatoes
  • Kosher salt
  • Fresh cracked pepper
  • Olive oil

To Make:

  1. Preheat oven to 475
  2. Wash all the veggies but don’t peel. Cut onion and shallot in half and arrange into the corners of a baking dish or roasting pan. Cut the celery, turnip, and parsnip into large chunks and scatter into the dish. Break up the garlic but don’t peel it and throw the whole lot in with the other veg. Arrange half the carrots into the dish, whole or cut in half depending on size. Drizzle veg with olive oil. 
  3. Place your chicken on a separate cutting board and remove any pieces from the inner cavity.
  4. Stuff the inner cavity of the chicken with a bunch of fresh dill, some chopped parsley, and a good handful of fresh rosemary. 
  5. Pierce the lemon on all sides with a tip of a knife and stuff into the chicken. 
  6. Season all sides very well with salt and pepper and a few pinches of dill. Rub all over the chicken with olive oil.
  7. Place chicken on top of the veggies in the baking dish and pop into the oven. Turn the heat down to 400 and roast for 1.5 hours. 
  8. Half way through cooking, take chicken out of the oven and spoon over it the juices and oils at the bottom of the pan. Also add 1/4 cup of water the dish so the veggies don’t dry out. Put it back in the oven to finish. 
  9. On a sheet tray arrange the rest of the carrots, all the brussel sprouts cut in half, and the baby potatoes cut in half. Season with salt and pepper, some fresh rosemary stalks, and drizzle over with olive oil. Use your hands to coat all the veggies with the seasoning and olive oil. (Side Note: Cut off the ends of the brussel sprouts before halving them if you don’t want to end up with the most horrific gas all night!)
  10. Pop veggies into the oven until golden brown and cooked through, about 45-55 mins. 
  11. When chicken is cooked through and juices run clear, let it rest for 10 minutes before carving. 
  12. Carve the chicken and serve with roasted veggies, fresh bread, and a glass of wine. 
  13. Enjoy!

If looking for a great reference on roasted meats, try Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution. Great book that’s easy to use and understand. 

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November 8, 2012


Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Ingredients:

  • 1 yam or sweet potato
  • 1 regular potato
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 egg
  • Salt
  • 6 fresh sage leaves
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cups flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 large shallot, diced
  • Field greens or arugula

To Make:

  1. Boil or roast the potatoes until they are soft. Cool before handling.
  2. Mash the potatoes or run through a mill.
  3. Add honey, egg, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt. Mix.
  4. Slowly start adding the flour, 1/2 cup at a time until dough is formed. Should be less gooey but will still stick to your fingers. 
  5. Flour a large board and drop 2 spoons of the dough on it. With floured hands, roll the dough gently, without pushing, into ropes.
  6. Cut the ropes into pieces and drop into boiling, salted water. Allow to cook for 4-5 minutes. 
  7. Meanwhile, in another pan, heat up the butter on medium heat, drop in the sage and allow to get crisp without burning. Remove the sage and set aside. 
  8. Add in the diced shallot and saute for a few minutes on medium-low heat until butter is browned. Add in the balsamic and stir. 
  9. Carefully transfer the gnocchi into the pan, turn off the heat, and stir once to coat. Don’t stir too much or the gnocchi will get mushy and fall apart. 
  10. Arrange greens or arugula in a bowl and carefully tip the gnocchi into it. Top with shaved Parmesan cheese and the sage leaves. 
  11. Enjoy!

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November 5, 2012


Chermoula Eggplant with Bulgar & Yogurt (adapted from Jerusalem)

I recently bought the cookbook Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi, author of Plenty, and am so excited to try everything in it! It looks delicious, healthy, and very close to home for me. This recipe turned out great!

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 large eggplant
  • 1 cup fine bulgar
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • Small handful fresh mint, chopped
  • Small handful fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • Small handful toasted cashews or almonds, crushed and chopped
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 5 oz sliced black olives, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed and chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

To Make:

  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. Cut eggplant in half, lengthwise. Make deep scores in crisscross fashion into the eggplant insides. 
  3. In small bowl mix the garlic, cumin, coriander, lemon zest of the whole lemon, paprika, 1/2 teaspoon salt, chili flakes, and 1/2 cup of olive oil. Mix well and spread over the inside of the eggplant, making sure to get some into the crisscrosses. Pop the eggplants into the oven for 40 minutes. 
  4. In another bowl, put the bulgar and cover with boiling water. Cover with a lid or use a plate. 
  5. After 5-10 minutes, add the cilantro, green onions, olives, mint, cashews, and lemon juice. Season with salt and stir to combine. Taste and add more salt if needed. Also, add some olive oil if you feel it’s too dry. 
  6. Once eggplants are roasted, spoon the bulgar over them and let some fall onto the plate. Finish with a few dollops of yogurt and a drizzle of olive oil. 
  7. Enjoy!

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November 2, 2012


Sundried Tomato Risotto with Arugula
Serves 2
Ingredients:
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 cup white wine
3 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 cup arborio rice (or use medium grain rice)
Handful freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 lemon
Arugula
10 sundried tomatoes, chopped into small chunks
Olive oil
To Make:
Heat up the chicken stock in a small pot and add the sundried tomatoes to it. Bring to boil and turn to a simmer.
In a large pan, heat up some olive oil on medium-high and add in your diced onion. Saute until translucent. 
Add in the rice and cook for 2-3 minutes, to toast it.
Add in the wine and allow to fully absorb. When there is no more liquid, add the chicken stock to the rice one ladle at a time, stirring often. 
The rice will slowly absorb the liquid of the chicken stock and as it does, add more. Add the tomatoes with the stock. The total time should be around 20 minutes of adding liquid, absorbing, and stirring. The rice should be creamy but still have a slight bite to it. 
Turn off the heat and add the juice of 1/2 lemon and the Parmesan cheese, stirring to combine. 
Add a large handful of arugula and stir that it as well. 
Serve with some fresh arugula on top, drizzle a little olive oil, and enjoy!
Simple and delicious! 

Sundried Tomato Risotto with Arugula

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 3 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup arborio rice (or use medium grain rice)
  • Handful freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 lemon
  • Arugula
  • 10 sundried tomatoes, chopped into small chunks
  • Olive oil

To Make:

  1. Heat up the chicken stock in a small pot and add the sundried tomatoes to it. Bring to boil and turn to a simmer.
  2. In a large pan, heat up some olive oil on medium-high and add in your diced onion. Saute until translucent. 
  3. Add in the rice and cook for 2-3 minutes, to toast it.
  4. Add in the wine and allow to fully absorb. When there is no more liquid, add the chicken stock to the rice one ladle at a time, stirring often. 
  5. The rice will slowly absorb the liquid of the chicken stock and as it does, add more. Add the tomatoes with the stock. The total time should be around 20 minutes of adding liquid, absorbing, and stirring. The rice should be creamy but still have a slight bite to it. 
  6. Turn off the heat and add the juice of 1/2 lemon and the Parmesan cheese, stirring to combine. 
  7. Add a large handful of arugula and stir that it as well. 
  8. Serve with some fresh arugula on top, drizzle a little olive oil, and enjoy!

Simple and delicious! 

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November 1, 2012


Vegetarian Moroccan Stew with Couscous
Serves 2-4
Ingredients:
1 cup couscous
1 cup boiling water
1 lemon
1 14oz can diced tomatoes
1 yam, peeled and cubed into medium chunks
1 Italian squash, cubed into large chunks
Large handful frozen peas (can be a mixed variety. I used the kind with pearl onions.)
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt and pepper
Optional: 1 “chicken” breast aka soy protein in the shape of a chicken breast
To Make:
In a bowl, mix couscous with pinch of salt and pepper, a drizzle of olive oil, and the juice of half the lemon. Add in the cup of boiling water, stir, cover and let sit for 10 minutes. 
Meanwhile, if using “chicken,” heat up a small pan with a bit of olive oil, place “chicken” in center, season with salt and pepper, and cook on both sides on medium heat until browned. Set aside.
In a large pan, heat up some olive oil and add in the cube yam. Saute on medium heat for 5 minutes. Add in the cinnamon and cumin and season with salt and pepper. Coat the squash and continue cooking until it starts getting tender. 
Add in the Italian squash and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes. 
Chop your “chicken” into similar sized chunks and add to pan along with the can of diced tomatoes, the frozen peas, and juice of the other half of the lemon and stir everything together. 
Cover with a lid, turn heat to medium-low and allow to simmer for 5 minutes. 
Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed. 
Serve over fluffed couscous.
Enjoy!
A great vegetarian meal that’s filling and delicious!

Vegetarian Moroccan Stew with Couscous

Serves 2-4

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup couscous
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 14oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 yam, peeled and cubed into medium chunks
  • 1 Italian squash, cubed into large chunks
  • Large handful frozen peas (can be a mixed variety. I used the kind with pearl onions.)
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt and pepper
  • Optional: 1 “chicken” breast aka soy protein in the shape of a chicken breast

To Make:

  1. In a bowl, mix couscous with pinch of salt and pepper, a drizzle of olive oil, and the juice of half the lemon. Add in the cup of boiling water, stir, cover and let sit for 10 minutes. 
  2. Meanwhile, if using “chicken,” heat up a small pan with a bit of olive oil, place “chicken” in center, season with salt and pepper, and cook on both sides on medium heat until browned. Set aside.
  3. In a large pan, heat up some olive oil and add in the cube yam. Saute on medium heat for 5 minutes. Add in the cinnamon and cumin and season with salt and pepper. Coat the squash and continue cooking until it starts getting tender. 
  4. Add in the Italian squash and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes. 
  5. Chop your “chicken” into similar sized chunks and add to pan along with the can of diced tomatoes, the frozen peas, and juice of the other half of the lemon and stir everything together. 
  6. Cover with a lid, turn heat to medium-low and allow to simmer for 5 minutes. 
  7. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed. 
  8. Serve over fluffed couscous.
  9. Enjoy!

A great vegetarian meal that’s filling and delicious!

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October 29, 2012


Pasta Pomodoro

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced fine
  • 1 12 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 red onion, diced fine
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tomato, diced fine
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried basil
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Small bunch fresh parsley, chopped finely
  • Angel hair pasta
  • 1 block fresh Parmesan cheese

To make:

  1. In a large pan, heat up some olive oil and add in your garlic, onion, and pepper.
  2. Season with your spices and salt and pepper to taste. Saute for 5-8 minutes until everything is tender.  (Pic 1)
  3. Next, add in your diced fresh tomato and stir in for 1 minute. 
  4. Add in the can of diced tomatoes and simmer on low for 10-15 minutes. (Pic 2)
  5. Chop your parsley and heat up water for the pasta while the sauce is developing. (Pic 3)
  6. Cook the angel hair according to package and use tongs to transfer it directly into the sauce pan. Stir everything together. Taste and add salt and pepper is it needs it.
  7. Add in half the chopped parsley and stir. Serve up the pasta in big bowls. 
  8. Sprinkle the rest of the parsley on top and then, grate some fresh Parmesan cheese on top. (Pic 4)
  9. Enjoy!

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October 26, 2012


Butternut Squash Soup with Cauliflower and Goat Cheese
Ingredients:
1 2lb butternut squash, peeled and chopped into cubes
2 quarts organic free-range chicken stock
1 red onion, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 fresh red chili or a jalepeno pepper, deseeded and chopped
1 head of cauliflower, florets cut off and into equal sizes
Goat cheese
Croutons. Check out my recipe for homemade croutons here!
Fresh basil
Chili flakes
Dried rosemary
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
To Make:
In a large soup pot, heat up some olive oil on medium heat and add in your chopped onion, celery, carrot, chili pepper, and garlic. Add 1 tablespoon of dried rosemary. Saute gently on medium-low heat, stirring often, until veggies are soft. About 10 minutes.
Add in your butternut squash and the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer for 30 minutes with a lid askew. 
When the squash has softened, puree with a hand blender or transfer the soup into a regular blender. 
Put the soup back on the stove on medium-low heat and add the cauliflower.  Taste at this point and season with salt and pepper until desired taste is reached. You may also add in chili flakes if you like a little kick. 
Simmer for another 10 minutes. The cauliflower should be softer but still firm to the bite. Not mushy…
Serve with wonderful croutons, a few crumbles of goat cheese, some fresh basil, and a drizzle of olive oil. 
Enjoy!
Best cold weather soup. Also really good for a holiday menu. 

Butternut Squash Soup with Cauliflower and Goat Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 1 2lb butternut squash, peeled and chopped into cubes
  • 2 quarts organic free-range chicken stock
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 fresh red chili or a jalepeno pepper, deseeded and chopped
  • 1 head of cauliflower, florets cut off and into equal sizes
  • Goat cheese
  • Croutons. Check out my recipe for homemade croutons here!
  • Fresh basil
  • Chili flakes
  • Dried rosemary
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

To Make:

  1. In a large soup pot, heat up some olive oil on medium heat and add in your chopped onion, celery, carrot, chili pepper, and garlic. Add 1 tablespoon of dried rosemary. Saute gently on medium-low heat, stirring often, until veggies are soft. About 10 minutes.
  2. Add in your butternut squash and the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer for 30 minutes with a lid askew. 
  3. When the squash has softened, puree with a hand blender or transfer the soup into a regular blender. 
  4. Put the soup back on the stove on medium-low heat and add the cauliflower.  Taste at this point and season with salt and pepper until desired taste is reached. You may also add in chili flakes if you like a little kick. 
  5. Simmer for another 10 minutes. The cauliflower should be softer but still firm to the bite. Not mushy…
  6. Serve with wonderful croutons, a few crumbles of goat cheese, some fresh basil, and a drizzle of olive oil. 
  7. Enjoy!

Best cold weather soup. Also really good for a holiday menu. 

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butternut squash soup butternut squash cauliflower croutons soup food recipe goat cheese cold weather autumn food

Homemade Croutons
Ingredients:
Several slices of bread. Good to use bread that’s old and you know you’re not going to finish. 
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
Garlic salt
1 clove finely minced fresh garlic
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley
To Make:
Cut the bread slices into cubes the size of croutons
Heat up a large frying pan on high and add a few tablespoons of olive oil
Add in your bread and fresh garlic
Start tossing the bread so it does not burn
Season with salt and pepper to taste
Add a dash of garlic salt to taste
Keep tossing the bread until browned on all sides. Add a little more oil if the pan is starting to smoke.
Once it is done, quickly transfer to a plate or bowl lined with paper towels so the excess oil is soaked up
Sprinkle croutons with fresh parsley
Enjoy with soup or on their own!
A really great way to save that old bread that you can’t finish. 

Homemade Croutons

Ingredients:

  • Several slices of bread. Good to use bread that’s old and you know you’re not going to finish. 
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Garlic salt
  • 1 clove finely minced fresh garlic
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

To Make:

  1. Cut the bread slices into cubes the size of croutons
  2. Heat up a large frying pan on high and add a few tablespoons of olive oil
  3. Add in your bread and fresh garlic
  4. Start tossing the bread so it does not burn
  5. Season with salt and pepper to taste
  6. Add a dash of garlic salt to taste
  7. Keep tossing the bread until browned on all sides. Add a little more oil if the pan is starting to smoke.
  8. Once it is done, quickly transfer to a plate or bowl lined with paper towels so the excess oil is soaked up
  9. Sprinkle croutons with fresh parsley
  10. Enjoy with soup or on their own!

A really great way to save that old bread that you can’t finish. 

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food croutons bread recipe homemade homemade croutons fall autumn food

October 22, 2012


Chicken Maryland
Ingredients:
4 chicken thighs with bones and skin
1/2 cup white wine
1 small onion
2 ears of corn
2 bananas
4 strips of bacon
Small bunch fresh mint
1 12 oz can of chickpeas or garbanzo beans, drained
1 cup half and half or heavy whipping cream
Chili flakes or 1 fresh red chili pepper
Salt and pepper
Olive oil
To Make:
Preheat the oven to 350 F
Finely dice your onion and cut the corn off the cobs
Slice the red chili into thin rounds. Don’t worry about the insides, they’re good.
Season each of the chicken thighs with salt and pepper on both sides, but more heavily on the skin side. 
In a large skillet that will fit all the chicken thighs, heat up 2 tablespoons of olive oil. 
Place the chicken thighs, skin side down, in the pan on medium-high heat and allow to brown. Do not move the chicken. Cook for 3 minutes until browned. Use tongs to remove the chicken and set aside.
In the same pan, add the onions and turn the heat down to medium. Season with salt and pepper and stir. Add in the chili rounds or a pinch or two of chili flakes depending on how spicy you like it. Allow to cook until the onion has softened. About 3 minutes. 
Add in the corn and the chickpeas and cook for an additional 1 minute. Then add in the wine and cook it down until there isn’t too much liquid left. 
Add in the cream, cook for 1 minute and turn off the heat. Taste to see if it needs any salt. 
In a baking dish that will fit the chicken in snuggly, pour in the corn mixture and arrange the chicken thighs on top, with the skin sides facing up. The corn sauce should be all the way up the sides of the chicken but not covering it. 
Break the bananas in half and cut those halves in half so you have four half-length pieces. Gently fit them in the baking dish between the chicken and the sides of the dish on each side of the baking dish. 
Tear the leaves of the mint off and push them into the corn sauce in between the chicken. You should only use about 8-10 leaves, depending on size. 
Arrange a piece of bacon on top of each chicken thigh. 
Put the baking dish into the oven for about 25 minutes or until the chicken has cooked through. Serve with a fresh sprig of mint!
Enjoy!
This is one of my favorite recipes as it combines the sweetness of the corn and bananas with the creaminess of the chickpeas and cream. So good. 

Chicken Maryland

Ingredients:

  • 4 chicken thighs with bones and skin
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 ears of corn
  • 2 bananas
  • 4 strips of bacon
  • Small bunch fresh mint
  • 1 12 oz can of chickpeas or garbanzo beans, drained
  • 1 cup half and half or heavy whipping cream
  • Chili flakes or 1 fresh red chili pepper
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil

To Make:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F
  2. Finely dice your onion and cut the corn off the cobs
  3. Slice the red chili into thin rounds. Don’t worry about the insides, they’re good.
  4. Season each of the chicken thighs with salt and pepper on both sides, but more heavily on the skin side. 
  5. In a large skillet that will fit all the chicken thighs, heat up 2 tablespoons of olive oil. 
  6. Place the chicken thighs, skin side down, in the pan on medium-high heat and allow to brown. Do not move the chicken. Cook for 3 minutes until browned. Use tongs to remove the chicken and set aside.
  7. In the same pan, add the onions and turn the heat down to medium. Season with salt and pepper and stir. Add in the chili rounds or a pinch or two of chili flakes depending on how spicy you like it. Allow to cook until the onion has softened. About 3 minutes. 
  8. Add in the corn and the chickpeas and cook for an additional 1 minute. Then add in the wine and cook it down until there isn’t too much liquid left. 
  9. Add in the cream, cook for 1 minute and turn off the heat. Taste to see if it needs any salt. 
  10. In a baking dish that will fit the chicken in snuggly, pour in the corn mixture and arrange the chicken thighs on top, with the skin sides facing up. The corn sauce should be all the way up the sides of the chicken but not covering it. 
  11. Break the bananas in half and cut those halves in half so you have four half-length pieces. Gently fit them in the baking dish between the chicken and the sides of the dish on each side of the baking dish. 
  12. Tear the leaves of the mint off and push them into the corn sauce in between the chicken. You should only use about 8-10 leaves, depending on size. 
  13. Arrange a piece of bacon on top of each chicken thigh. 
  14. Put the baking dish into the oven for about 25 minutes or until the chicken has cooked through. Serve with a fresh sprig of mint!
  15. Enjoy!

This is one of my favorite recipes as it combines the sweetness of the corn and bananas with the creaminess of the chickpeas and cream. So good. 

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chicken maryland chicken recipe banana chickpeas cream mint chili sweet and spicy food