Friday, December 7, 2012

Cold Outside

Well warm up with some stew/soup!

I revisited a recipe that I made at the beginning of the year: More Soup!! Only this time I made a lot of it and used parsnips instead of carrots. I didn't really care for the carrots in the stew last time around. The only other thing I did different was add allspice to the mix.

I found the parsnips really made the stew great. I remade this recipe because I had a ton of sweet potatoes from Thanksgiving. I was going to make a sweet potato apple bake thing (I think I did mention it in the last post, if not, I am now) that my great aunt made last year. I never had the time to do it, so the potatoes were just sitting there. I didn't want to waste them, so I decided to remake this stew. I still had the red lentils in the freezer and didn't want to waste them either. Ok so it may not be the best looking color of food, but its good. Especially if you like curry spiced things, the spices are all found in a curry spice blend.

I ate the stew on top of kale.

Sweet Tato, Parsnip, Apple and Red Lentil Stew

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 medium sweet potato, cubed (I left the skin on this time)
1 apple, cored and cubed (I left the skin on this time too, and used granny smith)
1 cup parsnips, peeled and cubed
1 cup red lentils, rinsed and picked through
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
2 cups vegetable broth

Saute the onion in the oil in a big soup pot.

Add in the parsips and sweet potatoes.

Add in the apples and spices.

Add in the lentils.

Now add the broth and let it simmer for 1 hour.

I had to change pots a couple of times while making this recipe because I under estimated how much I was actually making. It was funny. But it all worked out in the end.

I have a lot of it, anyone want some?

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Turkey Day!!

With no turkey...

How is that even possible? You may be saying, "You crazy!" but alas I am not, well maybe slightly. I do enjoy the smell of a good turkey roasting in the oven all morning long, great memories. I sure do love the holidays. With this being a day for food, family, and comas. Gotta love those food comas.

For this years dinner I made a new version of my cranberry sauce, pumpkin carrot biscuits, and some roasted asparagus. Something a tad different then previous years. I was going to make this sweet potato bake thing that my great aunt made last year for Thanksgiving but I didn't have time to make it. She had but apples, dried cranberries, and walnuts with the canned yams. I was going to make my own version of hers but there is always next year or hey black friday needs some good eats too. I also was going to make a pumpkin pie using cashews as the "cream" base but didn't get to that either. Hum seems like I didn't have time for anything I wanted to make. But I did make my pumpkin pie for my family.

The twist I made on the cranberry sauce was that this year I added wine to it. A spiced wine that the bf got me at the wine tasting we were at.

Spiced Cranberry and Grape Sauce

2 cups fresh cranberries
1/4 cup each red and black grapes, chopped
1/2 cup wine
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon honey
dash of salt, ginger, and cloves

Bring water, wine, honey, and spices to a boil in a sauce pot.

Add in the cranberries and grapes.

Bring back to a boil and allow all the cranberries to pop about 10 minutes.
Allow the sauce to cool. It will thicken as it cools.

This sauce doesn't get as thick as a canned cranberry sauce or even the other homemade version because of the wine and grapes added to it.

Pumpkin Carrot Biscuits

1/2 cup grated carrots
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (maybe a little extra cause I love cinnamon)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1 teaspoon caraway seeds

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place parchment paper on a baking sheet.

Mix the carrot, pumpkin, and spices together.

Add in the flour and baking powder.

When the mix it just about together, add in the seeds.

Place on a floured surface and you can roll it out but I pat mine to 1/2 inch thickness with my hand.

You can use any shape cookie cutter you wish or use a knife. I used a pumpkin shaped one =]

Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until firm when touched.

Roasted asparagus, just used my usual spices: salt, pepper, onion powder, oregano, and coriander, olive oil and roasted them for about 15-20 minutes.

And my dads famous stuffing:

I hope you all enjoyed your Turkey Day and spent it with family, friends, or even serving those in need. God bless to all and my prayers go out to those who are still recovering from super storm sandy.


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Chili, Apple Pie, and Tempeh

I know, I know, I am the worst at keeping up with this thing now-a-days. I have all the intentions on doing a new post but just never seem to get around to it. I barely even bake or cook. I am mainly eating roasted veggies or salads now because I don't have time to be adventurous. I miss that. Being creative and coming up with new recipes. My pintrest board Recipes to Try is over flowing with things I have yet had a chance to make. So sad. But with Turkey day tomorrow and Christmas right around the corner...that means COOKIE TIME!!!!! So can not wait. I was at Stop & Shop on Monday and saw they put out the holiday candy, started to pick out the M&M's and Hersey kisses for my cookies and had to stop myself. Thanksgiving comes first then I will stock up!

So lets get to some recipes:

First up how about some chili. I know I already posted a chili recipe, I think actually two: my first one  and a pumpkin chili. What makes this recipe different is that I used this awesome spice blend. I was at a wine tasting with the bf and some friends and we came across this cute couple that makes chipotle spice blends for cooking. We tried some and I really liked one so we got it. It isn't too spicy but has just enough kick that leaves that warm feeling in the back of your throat. So I made some chili with it. I used my first recipe but added the spice blend along with my other spices.

Here is the spice blend
Check out their site

Now for some apple pie!!

I wanted to go apple picking for my birthday (like I do every year) and I happened to buy way more apples then expected. I had a great sous chef helping me put in the kitchen washing, peeling, and coring apples, while I ran them through the food processor (what a brilliant idea to use that to slice them instead of a knife) and started to make the filling. I also made the pie crust but it had real butter and all that good stuff in it. The filling was just lemon juice, sugar, flour, nutmeg, and cinnamon, oh and apples. We did this all during Super Storm Sandy and before the power would go out. I made a lot of pie. Some with crumb topping, some galettes (open, fold over pies).

And some baby apple pies =]

Tempeh time. For those who are asking what it tempeh, it is a meet subsitute for vegetarians made from fermented soybeans and other things like rice, quinoa, millet, etc. I made a yummy tempeh dinner for one the other night.

First I roasted a tomato with my usual seasonings: (they were yellow tomatoes the last from my garden)
Then I melted some cheese over the tempeh and put it over sauteed kale and topped it with the tomatoes:

And before I leave you here is a dinner I made a few weeks ago that was strange but so good:
Roasted asparagus, red peppers, butternut squash, and eggplant with tamari roasted almonds (one of my new favorite things.)

Tomorrow I will post my Turkey Day food!


Monday, October 15, 2012

Oh Hey..

Right I have a blog...

Oops, sorry I have forgotten about you kind of sort of.

I honestly have not been cooking as much as I would like to lately. I went back to school, have a crazy schedule, and barely even have time to eat any more. I'm eating out way more than I ever had in the past, which is ok I guess but I truly miss cooking.

I have some pictures of a few things I have cooked up lately.  But nothing recipe worthy really. Oh and I also went out to the city again, not to a vegan place but they had a vegetarian menu which was really good.

So lets begin with some great end of the summer stir fries I made:

This was curry roasted parsnips and carrots with zucchini, green beans, and hazelnuts. 

My garden roasted beets, garden tomatoes, not garden avocado and lemon basil. Sounds strange but it was actually good. I just love avocados.
This was even stranger and totally from my garden (well except for the nuts). Roasted butternut squash, beets, tomatoes, and lemon basil, pecans.
Completely from the garden (sorry you can't really even see it) but there is tomatoes, sauteed eggplant and beets with lots and lots of parsley.
New York City take three! It was a Ninja. Well I didn't actually take pictures of every aspect of the meal but it did include baked edamame (it was in a salt crust that you had to break to get to the edamame), cucumber and avocado sushi, the giant white thing on the plate was third course: daikon radish in this really good sauce and it had arugula with it, main course was a tofu "steak" that was topped with a portabella mushroom and stuffed with edamame, then your choice of a dessert. I had a tofu mango cheesecake. The tofu was probably the best food of my meal but the atmosphere made the night. It was such a fun restaurant.
These were an attempt at butternut squash flatbread. They tasted really good but they were super chewy. Need to work on the recipe more. After eating them I had the thought of butternut squash bread. So below was that attempt.
It looks super good but it did not rise as much as I was hoping for.
As you can see they are really flat.
So I cut it in half then cut that open to make a sangwich. It wasn't as good tasting as it looks, So I need to work on that recipe too.

Um so what to make next? Not really sure what it will be exactly. I have a few ideas such as a white asparagus soup made with potatoes? And definitely working on that butternut squash bread recipe. I also want to make a tomato herb bread or flat bread.

I will try to make some time to get creative very soon. Recipe soon, promise!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

NYC Eats Part 2

I told you I would get back to the city and try another restaruant. Finally I did! This time I tried Cafe Blossom in West Village. Blossom has three different locations in the city, each has a slightly different menu. We walked the Highline and ended up not too far from West Village.

What did I actually eat? We tried the steamed cashew cheese dumplings with tamari plum sauce.
I liked them. It reminded me of perogies. Definitely going to remake something like this. The sauce on the other hand was good, but not sure how much I liked it. It was very strong and the two items paired together didn't really do it for me. Not knocking the restaurant cause I did enjoy the dish, but when I remake it I might try a different sauce. We will see.

For my dinner I had the quinoa salad, field greens, black beans, roasted sweet corn, avocado, bell peppers, spicy red quinoa, poblano chili dressing.
I thought there was going to be more quinoa but I really liked it. The dressing was so good, had a nice heat from the poblano chili. It wasn't to over powering though. I should have gotten something else though, next time.

Since I forced my guy to come with me and eat vegan food, way to be a trooper, he had a "cheese burger" bbq cheese burger, coleslaw, smoked tofu, onion rings, chipotle aioli.

It was good, he liked it too, I think. He could have just been saying that to make me feel good for bringing him there.

We also went to Babycakes bakery and I got carrot cake cupcakes and red velvet cupcakes. One spelt of each and the other their regular gluten free vegan recipe. I wanted to see how my version of things measured up to the bakeries. Let me explain that statement: I have both of their cookbooks and have made some of their cakes and such, like the frosting, and I wanted to see if I am as good as they are. Pretty darn close (if not better haha) just saying. I don't have pictures of these, cause I left them out of the fridge to long and the frosting started to melt so they weren't very pretty but tasted good.

And I don't really have any recipes of my own to share with you today. Usually I do but sorry. Next time... promise!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Garden Eats

I can not consume everything that is coming out of my garden! It is crazy how well it is doing. I have eaten enough cucumbers, zucchini, and kale (even though I love it I have had my full, almost) to last me until ... next year I guess haha. But I do love my garden this year. We tried growing beets (I will have a post dedicated to them soon) and they were great and so were their greens. Our green beans are just about done but the tomatoes are growing full force now. I haven't had enough of my lemon basil though. That stuff is great in anything, I really do put it in anything. It gives a nice fresh flavor to anything you put it in. Love it!!

So what have I been making lately...

Garden tacos: roasted zucchini, tomatoes and lemon basil from the garden along with roasted mushrooms, guacamole, brown rice tortillas, and Daiya cheddar style cheese.

Garden hash: baby zucchini, baby beets, kale, tomatoes, and lemon basil from the garden and a left over baked potato and Daiya cheddar cheese. This came out shockingly great. I was nervous how the "cheese" would taste with the beets and kale, but yum!

Oh I totally forgot to mention the eggplant we are growing!

Eggplant Pizza-ish: roasted eggplant on a brown rice tortilla with Diaya mozzarella style cheese, topped with tomatoes and lemon basil (getting the jest yet on the lemon basil? =]).

Funny how all my food kinda looks the same, it isn't I promise!

And I made a kale dip like pesto thing....

Kale Pumpkin Seed Pesto

1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
1 lemon, zested and juiced
2 tablespoons tahini
1/4 teaspoon each cumin, coriander, and black pepper
6 kale leaves
1/4 cup lemon basil
2 tablespoons water

Place the pumpkin seeds, lemon juice, zest, tahini, and spices in the food processor.

Pulse is a few times to start to chop the seeds.

Add in the kale and lemon basil.

Turn on the processor and slowly add in the water as needed.

Serve how ever you like, I ate it more like a dip with cucumbers and tomatoes but top some pasta with that stuff!

I was watching TV the other day and saw a new donut pan! They are the long twist like donuts and was like "Oh I want that!" and my mom was like "You don't even use the ones you have." True dat momma.

Carob Banana Donuts

1/2 cup whole wheat white flour
1/2 cup carob powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 large ripe banana
1 tablespoon flaxmeal
1 tablespoon water
1/4 cup cacao nibs (optional)

1/2 cup cashew butter
2 teaspoons cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spray/grease 1 large sized donut pan.
Mix the flaxmeal with the water.

Mash the banana.

Add in the flax egg.

Add all the dry ingredients.

Fold in the cacao nibs if you want or add in carob chips. Or a nut, whatever or don't. Place in a zippy bag.

Cut off on tip and pipe the batter into the pan. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes. Turning the pan during baking.

For the frosting mix the cashew butter with the cinnamon. Top donuts when you are ready to eat them.

Yay!! That is all for now....

Sorry about not posting in a while, but like I said a beet post will be coming!!