Sunday, December 14, 2008

Kheera, Tamatar aur Pyaz ka Raita

Cucumber, Tomato and Onion Raita also called Kheera, Tamatar aur Pyaz ka Raita

2 cups plain yogurt
1 small red onion, finely minced
1 medium tomato - finely minced
1/2 cup finely chopped cucumber
2 green chillies, finely minced
1 tbs. chopped cilantro leaves minced
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp. coarsely ground roast cumin seeds.
1/4 tsp. coarsely ground roast cumin seeds for garnish
1/4 tsp. red chilli for garnish (optional)

To make, mix all ingredients together in a large bowl and transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with a sprinkle of roast cumin and chopped red chilli. Serve chilled.


Sunday, November 23, 2008

Cheddar Cheese Chowder

Serves 8-10?

3 cups broth
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed into bite sized pieces
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 cup sliced carrots, or more to taste
1/2 cup diced green pepper

1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup flour
3 1/2 cups milk
3 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 tsp hot sauce, optional

Simmer vegetables in broth until tender. Turn heat off.
Make a roux by heating butter and flour on low. Cook 1-2 minutes. Gradually add milk and cheese, stirring until smooth & melted.
Pour cheese sauce into veggie soup mixture. Serve immediately. Do not boil.

Source: Sally Dansey

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Gujrati Dal

Mixed lentils and vegetable stew

1 cup mixed yellow lentils, pink lentils, yellow split peas, and yellow split mung beans (toovar, masar, channa, and moong dal)
3 tomatoes (about 3/4 lb)
1 small eggplant (about 3/4 lb.)
1 squash/zucchini (6-7 in.)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp chopped ginger
1 tsp chopped garlic (optional)
2 green chilis, seeded and minced, or 1/3 tsp red pepper
4 tbsp ghee
3/4 tsp black mustard seeds
3/4 tsp cumin seeds
1/3 tsp ground asafetida
2 1/2 tsp salt
8 kari leaves or 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

Pick over and wash dal (lentils/etc). Soak in a bowl in 2 in. of water for 2 hours, drain.
Blanch and peel tomatoes, cut into 1-inch wedges. Cut eggplant and squash into thick 1 1/2 inch sticks, like short french fries.
Put dal in a deep pot with turmeric, ginger, garlic, chilies, and 3 cups of cold water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cook 45 minutes or until fully cooked and tender. Turn off heat, let cool a bit, puree. There should be 4 cups of puree; if not, add water.
Heat ghee on high heat, add mustard seeds. When they're done popping (very quick), add cumin seeds. When they turn dark (about 10 seconds), add asafetida, stir, add tomatoes. Cook 3-4 minutes, stirring, but not mashing up tomatoes. Add eggplant and squash, cook 3 more minutes.
Add lentil puree and salt, boil, simmer 20 minutes or until vegetables are cooked and tender. Add kari or cilantro and serve.

Dan's note: watch out for the asafetida! It is intense! Your kitchen will smell like it! Don't use too much or your food will all smell like it! Also, when it says "there should be 4 cups of puree there", I think maybe more like 3. It's real thin if you add water to make 4 cups.

Source: Classic Indian Cooking by Julie Sahni, pg. 280-282

Monday, November 17, 2008

Safaid Channe

(Chickpeas in ginger sauce)

3 15-oz. cans chickpeas, or 4 c. cooked chickpeas with 1 c. liquid
1/4 c. vegetable oil
2 c. finely chopped onions
2 tsp garlic, minced
2 tbsp ginger, shredded
2 tbsp ground coriander
1/3 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp mango powder, or 1 1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp red pepper
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 medium tomato, chopped, or 1/2 c. canned diced tomatoes
1 tsp salt (or to taste)
1 medium onion, peeled and thinly sliced
1 green chili, shredded

Drain chickpeas, saving liquid.
Heat oil on medium-high. Fry onions for 5 minutes or until light brown, stirring so they don't burn.
Add garlic and ginger, reduce to medium, fry 2 minutes. Add spices, stir. Add tomatoes, cook until the oil begins to separate from the mixture, about 6 minutes.
Add the chickpea liquid, the lemon juice (if you're using it), salt, and 1/2 cup water (optional). Simmer 10 minutes, covered, or until it's a pulpy gravy. Add the chickpeas and cook, covered, for 10 more minutes. Turn off heat, check for salt, garnish and serve.

Source: Classic Indian Cooking by Julie Sahni, pg. 274-275

Gobhi Matar Rasedar

(Cauliflower, peas, and potatoes in a soupy sauce)

1 small head cauliflower (1-1 1/4 lb.), washed, broken into about 1 1/2 inch flowerets/slices
2 medium potatoes (about 1/2 lb.), peeled, cut into 6 pieces
1/2 c. ghee or vegetable oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tbsp ground coriander
1 tsp turmeric
1/2-1 tsp red pepper
1 1/2 c. shelled peas, or 10 oz. frozen peas, defrosted
1 1/2 c. pureed or chopped fresh tomatoes, or 3/4 c. canned tomato puree (or canned tomatoes, which I prefer)
4 tsp salt
3 tbsp fresh cilantro (or 1 1/2 tbsp dry cilantro)

Heat the ghee on medium-high. Add cumin, fry until dark brown (about 20 seconds). Add cumin powder, coriander, turmeric, and red pepper, stir, and immediately add cauliflower, potatoes, and peas (if fresh). Fry, stirring constantly, until the vegetables sear a bit, about 5 minutes. It'll be very dry, don't worry; just try not to let it burn. Add tomato puree, fry until it thickens and the fat separates a little, about 3 minutes.
Add water as needed, up to 3 c., and the salt. Reduce heat, simmer covered, until tender and cooked through, about 15 minutes. Add peas (if frozen), cook 5 minutes, turn off heat. Season, top with cilantro, serve in bowls.

Source: Classic Indian Cooking by Julie Sahni, pg. 256-258

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Shahi Sabz Korma

(Royal Braised Vegetables in Cardamom Nut Sauce)

2 medium potatoes (about 1/2 lb.)
2 medium turnips (about 1/2 lb.)
1 carrot (about 1/4 lb.)
12 tbsp vegetable oil
Paneer from 4 cups of milk, or another potato (about 1/4 lb.)
2 c. finely chopped onions
1 tbsp. finely chopped garlic
1 1/2 tbsp. finely chopped ginger
2 green chilies, seeded and minced (dan's note: I used cayenne)
12 green cardamom pods
1 stick cinnamon, 3 in. long
24 cloves
5 tbsp. ground blanched almonds
1 c. plain yogurt
1/4 c. peas, fresh or frozen
1 tbsp. salt
1/4 c. heavy cream

Peel and dice potatoes, turnips, carrot. Put into a bowl of cold water to prevent discoloring.
Heat 3 tbsp oil in a big heavy pan. Add paneer, saute (with a lid handy), remove to a bowl.
Add the rest of the oil, onions, garlic, ginger, chilies, increase heat to high, fry until light brown (~10 min.), stirring constantly to prevent burning. Add cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, and fry 5 more minutes. Add almond powder, stir, fry for 2 more minutes.
Add the yogurt, 2 tbsp at a time (add more when evaporated). Keep stirring a lot so it doesn't burn.
Drain and add vegetables. If peas are fresh, add now. Add salt, 1 1/2 c. hot water. Boil, simmer, cook (covered) until tender but still firm, about 30 min. Add paneer, cream, and peas if frozen, cook (uncovered) 10 minutes. The sauce should be thick. If it's too thin, simmer it some more; if it's too thick, add milk or water. Season, serve. Stores well, tastes better the next day.

Also, check it out: to make Shahi Sabz Biriyani, cook 2 cups basmati rice, add, put in the oven for 30 minutes at 300.

Source: Classic Indian Cooking by Julie Sahni, pg. 269-271, 381-382

Matar Paneer

Matar Paneer, or "Green Peas and Indian Cheese in Fragrant Tomato Sauce"

Paneer from 8 cups milk, should be firm but not hard, compact and not porous, moist but not wet. (dan's note: I just bought some paneer. It worked fine but was maybe a little harder than it should be, it didn't absorb all the flavor)
12 tbsp ghee (dan's note: I used a lot less, maybe 1/3-1/2)
2 c. onions, finely chopped
1 tsp garlic, minced
2 tbsp ginger, minced
2 tbsp ground coriander
1 tsp turmeric
1/4-1/2 tsp red pepper
1/4-1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp paprika
2 c. chopped or pureed tomatoes, or 1 1/2 c. canned diced tomatoes
1 1/2 c. peas, or 10 oz. frozen peas
2 tsp salt
2 tsp garam masala
4 tbsp chopped cilantro leaves (or 2 tbsp dried cilantro leaves)

Let paneer dry for 1/2 hr.
Heat 3 tbsp ghee in a big heavy (optionally nonstick) pan. Add cheese. (it'll splatter) Fry until lightly seared, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
Add the rest of the ghee, turn heat to high, add onions and fry until light brown (~5 min), stirring constantly so they don't burn. Add ginger and garlic, cook 2 more minutes. Add coriander, turmeric, red and black pepper, and paprika. Stir for a moment, add tomatoes. Cook until it thickens and the fat separates, about 10 minutes, stirring often.
Add 2 1/2 c. hot water, boil, simmer 20 minutes. Cool briefly, puree in a blender, leaving it a little coarse so there's some texture.
Return to the pan, add peas, salt, cheese, and 1/2 c. water, boil, simmer until peas are cooked. Let it rest an hour before serving, then reheat, add garam masala and cilantro, and serve.

Source: Classic Indian Cooking by Julie Sahni, pg. 266-268

Lentil and Rhubarb Stew With Indian Spices

Lentil and Rhubarb Stew With Indian Spices

* 3 or 4 stalks rhubarb, strings removed, chopped
* 1 cup orange lentils, well washed (any lentils work but orange ones cook quickly)
* 2 tablespoons minced ginger
* 1 tablespoon minced garlic
* 4 cardamom pods
* 1 tablespoon mustard seeds
* 2 cloves
* 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
* 1 dried ancho or other mild chili, optional
* Salt
* Chopped cilantro leaves for garnish

Combine rhubarb and lentil in a pan, add water to cover by about 1 inch. Simmer until quite soft, 20-30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in another pan, saute in oil the ginger, garlic, cardamom, mustard seeds, cloves, pepper, and chili. When the mustard seeds start popping all over the place, add this stuff to the rhubarb/lentils. Add salt, garnish with cilantro, serve.

Dan's note: Mark Bittman says you can add other vegetables, but don't add super-flavorful ones like turnips or beets because they overpower the flavor.

Source: Mark Bittman,

Monday, October 13, 2008

Colman's (of Norwich) Original English Noodle Beet Salad

1/3 lb angel hair pasta
2 beets
1 cucumber
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp Colman's (of Norwich) Original English Mustard. Or, you know, whatever yellow mustard you want.
a 1-second glug of soy sauce
2 tbsp apple cider (optional, if you want it sweeter)

Break the pasta into thirds. Cook it. Grate the beets. Cut the cucumber into matchsticks, or maybe grate it (does grating a cucumber work?)... just get it into small thin pieces. Mix them.

Mix everything else. It will look like hell, thanks to the cinnamon floating on top. Now pour it over the solid food. Doesn't look like hell anymore, right? In fact, with the purple noodles and all, it actually looks pretty okay. Season to taste, garnish with your favorite garnish, serve with furious gusto.

Source: yours truly, c/o Recipe Challenge w/ Julie, 10/12/08... the challenge: angel hair, beets, cinnamon, mustard. Comments welcome!
N.B. I am not, nor is this recipe, affiliated with Colman's (of Norwich) Original English Mustard.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Grandma's Grains

Grandma's Grain Recipe

If you can't find one of the ingredients, don't be discouraged. Simply substitute more of whatever you do have - more rice, millet, etc.

1 cup long grain brown rice (I use Lundberg's)
1 cup millet
3 handfuls of whole barley
3 handfuls of whole oats (groats)
1 handful of red rice, wild rice, or a mixture of wild type rices
2 teaspoons salt

Mix all grains together, rinse, drain, and put in a large thick-bottomed pot. Stir in the salt. Cover with water up to your knuckle - about two inches above the grains. Bring to a boil, then turn down flame as low as it will go. Cook uncovered (simmering) until all water is gone, about thirty-five minutes. If you overshot the amount of water you added and your grains cook before the water absorbs entirely, strain off the extra water.

This makes a big pot of mixed grains. Plenty for a family of four to use over the course of a week.
Dan's note: it's true. This is a ton. I made a half recipe, and it's enough to last me forever.


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Lemony Chickpea Stir-fry

Lemony Chickpea Stir-fry Recipe

2 tablespoon ghee or extra-virgin olive oil
fine grain sea salt
1 small onion or a couple shallots, sliced
1 cup cooked chickpeas (canned is fine, if you don't want to cook up a pot of dried chickpeas)
8 ounces extra-firm tofu
1 cup of chopped kale
2 small zucchini, chopped
zest and juice of 1/2 a lemon

Heat 1 tablespoon of the ghee/olive oil In a large skillet over medium-high heat and stir in a big pinch of salt, the onion, and chickpeas. Saute until the chickpeas are deeply golden and crusty. Stir in the tofu and cook just until the tofu is heated through, just a minute or so. Stir in the kale and cook for one minute more. Remove everything from the skillet onto a large plate and set aside. In the same skillet heat the remaining tablespoon of ghee/olive oil, add the zucchini and saute until it starts to take on a bit of color, two or three minutes. Add the chickpea mixture back to the skillet, and remove from heat. Stir in the lemon juice and zest, taste, and season with a bit more salt if needed. Turn out onto a platter and serve family style.

Serves 2 - 4.


Summer Vegetable Cianfotta

Summer Vegetable Cianfotta Recipe

Fiorelli are the flower buds that eventually grow into squash blossoms - if you can't find them don't let it stump you, just leave them out or use squash blossoms which are more readily available. Shelley recommends pairing this stew with Frappato/Nero d'Avola Blend (Sicily). The also include instruction for making this stew with a prosciutto broth, but I opted for the vegetarian version.

1 globe eggplant, trimmed and diced (about 4 cups)
4 summer zucchini or squashes, trimmed and diced (about 4 cups)
Kosher salt
1 fennel bulb
2 cups extra virgin olive oil
5 cloves garlic, smashed with the side of a knife
4 sprigs (fresh) marjoram
1 bay leaf
3 Yukon Gold potatoes, cubed (about 2 cups)
2 cups water
1 cup fiorelli or thinly sliced squash blossoms
1 cup cherry tomatoes, stemmed and halved
Block of aged pecorino for shaving

Preheat the oven to 300˚F.

Evenly distribute the eggplant and zucchini on a rimmed baking sheet and sprinkle with about 1 teaspoon salt. Let stand for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, cut off the stalks and feathery tops (reserve for another use) from the fennel bulb, halve lengthwise, and then cut away the core. Cut the halves lengthwise into 1⁄4-inch-thick slices. You should have about 2 cups.

In a 6- to 8-quart heavy-bottomed pot, combine the olive oil, garlic, marjoram, and bay leaf over medium heat and sweat, stirring occasionally, for about 3 minutes, or until the garlic begins to soften. Stir in the fennel and 1 teaspoon salt, and cook gently for about 2 minutes, or until the fennel begins to soften. Stir in the potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, for a few minutes more.

Pat the zucchini and eggplant pieces dry and add them to the pot. Stir the vegetables to ensure they are coated evenly and generously with the oil. Cover the pot, place in the oven, and cook, stirring gently every 10 to 15 minutes, for about 40 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender but not falling apart.

Remove from the oven and drain off most of the olive oil from the vegetables (you can reserve the oil in the refrigerator for a future batch of cianfotta). Add the water to the vegetables, place over medium-high heat, bring to a simmer, and cook for 5 minutes. Add the fiorelli and tomatoes and simmer for a minute or two more. Check for seasoning and season.

Divide the soup among warmed bowls. Using a vegetable peeler, shave a few pecorino curls over the top of each serving. Serve immediately.

Serves 8 as a first course, or 4 to 6 as a main course.

Reprinted with permission from A16: Food + Wine by Nate Appleman and Shelley Lindgren, copyright © 2008. Published by Ten Speed Press.

Panzanella - Italian Bread Salad

Panzanella - Italian Bread Salad

Makes:4-6 servings

* 2 large ripe tomatoes, cut into bite-size pieces
* 1 small cucumber, peeled and diced
* 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
* 1 clove garlic, very finely minced
* 1 cup fresh basil leaves, torn into small pieces with your hands
* 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
* 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar, plus more as needed
* salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
* 8 slices thick stale country style Italian bread, torn into bite-size pieces (sourdough is also good but not something you use here in Italy)

1. In a bowl, combine the tomatoes, cucumber, onion, garlic and basil. Drizzle with the 1/2 cup olive oil and the 3 tbsp vinegar, season with salt and pepper and toss well.
2. Place half of the bread in a wide, shallow bowl. If the bread is quite stale and dry, you should first spoon a few tbsp of water over the bread and let it soak some of the water up, then with your hands squeeze all of the water out and place bread in a different bowl before proceeding. If it isn't too stale or didn't have any, then you can skip this step.
3. Spoon half of the tomato mixture over the bread. Layer the remaining bread on top and then the remaining tomato mixture. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour or until serving time. Just before serving, toss the salad and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper. At this point the bread should have absorbed the water from the tomatoes and be all moist. If the bread seems dry for some reason, add a little bit of olive oil and toss well. Serve immediately.


Thursday, August 7, 2008

Mock Creamy Tomato Sauce


16 ounces colored rotini pasta
1 (16 ounce) jar roasted red bell peppers
9 ounces low-fat, firm silken tofu (Dan's note: just use regular silken tofu.)
1 1/2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups vegetable broth
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning (Dan's note: not sure what exactly is in an "italian season" mix. I used thyme and oregano.)
1/2 onion, chopped
10 spears asparagus, sliced diagonally
8 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 (16 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon hot chile paste (optional)
ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese


1. In a large pot with boiling salted water, cook pasta until al dente. Drain well.
2. Meanwhile, in a blender or food processor puree roasted red and yellow peppers, tofu, tomato paste, vegetable broth, balsamic vinegar, and Italian seasoning. Set aside.
3. Coat a medium saute pan with cooking spray. Cook onion, garlic, and asparagus over medium heat until tender, about 5 minutes. Add water if necessary to prevent sticking. Stir in mushrooms; cook 3 to 5 minutes, or until mushrooms are tender and soft. Stir in tofu sauce, tomatoes, black pepper. Add hot chili paste, if desired. Reduce heat to low, and heat through.
4. Toss pasta with sauce, and serve with Parmesan cheese.

Serves 4


Dan's note: This author is all about low fat, which I suspect is why he/she put in tofu. I bet it'd be great with cream. But it's interesting to note that it does work with tofu too. Oh yeah, and oh my god, use a bunch of olive oil, don't "coat a pan with cooking spray." For crying out loud.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Fruit stuffed pork tenderloin

2 pork tenderloins, spiral cut, (or just with a pocket in it)

2 apples, peeled, small diced
6 prunes, small diced
6 apricots, dried
2 tbsp walnuts, minced
1.5 oz. brandy
1 tsp nutmeg
2 egg whites, whipped slightly
salt and pepper, to taste

Ground caraway, salt, pepper to taste

2 tbsp shallots
1 oz. brandy
2 c. brown sauce

Spiral cut or pocket cut tenderloin to produce a flat sheet. Cover with plastic wrap, pound to an even thickness, maybe 1/4".
Combine all stuffing ingredients (apples to salt and pepper), mix. Season pork, then spread filling in a thin even layer over the pork, then roll it up to form a tight cylinder. Truss the tenderloin with string to hold its shape. Sear in a hot skillet (not nonstick) on all sides. Remove pork to a roasting pan, cook at 350 to an internal temperature of 145.
Meanwhile, sweat shallots in the pan you seared the pork in. Deglaze with brandy, add brown sauce, simmer 10 minutes.

Source: Pennsylvania Culinary Institute "Oktoberfest" enthusiast class, Chef Art Inzinga, October 14, 2006

Friday, July 4, 2008


Halushki (cabbage and noodles)

1 cabbage head (small)
12 oz. wide egg noodles (or 1 egg, 2 c. flour, 1 pinch salt, milk as needed; combine, roll out to 1/8 inch thick, cut into strips, let dry)
24 oz. cottage cheese
8 oz. sour cream
1 egg
1 onion, mild (small)
1/2 c. butter or margarine
salt and pepper

Boil noodles, set aside.
Dice onion, saute in 1/3 stick of butter until they get a little color, set aside.
Remove stem, chop cabbage into bite-sized pieces (about 3/4 inch). Saute in 2/3 stick of butter until tender and have a little color. Add to noodles.
Blend cottage cheese, sour cream, egg. Add sauted onions and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add cheese mixture to noodles and cabbage, mix well. Pour into a glass 9x13 baking dish lightly coated with non-stick spray. Bake covered at 350 for 30 minutes or until heated through. Uncover and bake an additional 10-15 minutes to crisp edges and top layer. Serve hot.

Note: do not saute onions and cabbage together; onions will burn before cabbage is done. This also helps to better distribute the butter throughout the dish.

Source: Chef S. Culp, PA Culinary Institute, Polish Enthusiast course, 11/6/07


Bigos (Polish hunter's stew)

1/4 c. dried mushrooms
1 c. pitted prunes
8 oz. lean pork
16 oz. chuck steaks
8 oz. kielbasa or other polish sausage
1/4 c. flour
2 onions, sliced
3 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 c. dry madeira wine
2 lb. sauerkraut, rinsed
4 tomatoes, chopped
4 cloves
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp. dried dill
2 1/2 c. chicken stock
1 1/2 lb. sweet potatoes
1/4 c. fresh parsley, chopped
salt and pepper

Cover prunes, dried mushrooms in boiled water. Let stand for 30 minutes, then drain.
Cut all meats in 1-inch cubes, put in ziploc bag, add flour, close bag and shake.
Saute onions in oil until soft, remove.
Brown meat on medium until just browned, not fully cooked, remove and set aside. Add wine, simmer for 2 minutes, stirring.
Return meat to pan with onion, sauerkraut, tomatoes, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaves, dill, mushrooms, prunes. Pour in stock, season with salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil, lower heat, cover, simmer 1 1/2-2 hrs. Uncover for the last 20 minutes to let liquid evaporate.
In the meantime, peel and cut potatoes into 1-inch cubes. Boil in water until tender, drain and toss with parsley. Add potatoes to bowl, top with stew, sprinkle with parsley.

Source: Chef S. Culp, PA Culinary Institute, Polish Enthusiast course, 11/6/07


Potato/cheese filling:
1 tbsp grated onion
2 tbsp butter
2 c. cold mashed potatoes
1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
4 oz. cream cheese
salt and pepper
Saute onion in butter until tender, combine with potatoes and cheese, season to taste.

Sauerkraut filling:
1 lb. sauerkraut, rinsed
1/2 onion, diced
1/4 lb. bacon, crispy, in pieces
salt and pepper
Saute (do not stir too much or it'll never brown).

Prune filling:
2 c. dry cottage cheese
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp melted butter
6 tbsp chopped prunes
2 egg yolks

Pierogi dough:
2 1/2 c. flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
2 tsp vegetable oil
3/4 c. warm water
bacon, crisp, chopped (optional)
onion, chopped, lightly browned in butter (optional)

Mix flour with salt in a deep bowl. Add egg, oil, water to make a medium soft dough. Knead on a floured board until smooth (not too much, though, or it'll toughen).
Divide dough into 2 parts, cover, let stand for at least 10 minutes.
Roll dough thin on a floured board. Cut rounds with a biscuit cutter or the open end of a glass. Put a spoonful of filling in it, form a half circle, press edges together with fingers, make sure it seals well.
Place pierogi on a floured board, cover with a tea towel to prevent from drying out. Drop a few (not too many) into a pot of boiling salted water. Boil 3-4 minutes. They'll be ready when they're puffed. Remove with a perforated spoon or skimmer, drain thoroughly.
Place in a deep dish, sprinkle with melted butter, keep them hot. Don't pile/crowd them.

Source: Chef S. Culp, PA Culinary Institute, Polish Enthusiast course, 11/6/07

Chicken salad wrap

1/4 c. chopped walnuts
1 tsp olive oil
3/4 lb. chicken, in small cubes
kosher salt, pepper
1/4 c. crumbled roquefort cheese
1/4 c. blue cheese dressing
1/4 c. dried cherries
1/4 c. chopped celery
1/2 c. chopped arugula
two tortillas

Toast walnuts on a baking sheet (350, about 10 minutes or until shiny). Saute chicken with salt and pepper, brown all sides. Cool.
Mix roquefort, blue cheese dressing, cherries, celery, chicken. Can refrigerate and finish later.
To serve: add arugula and walnuts, wrap in tortillas.

Source: Aunt Jill and Uncle Marc

Dan's note: it's kinda a guideline, nothing hard and fast. Seitan actually works well here. Celery is pretty important, though, or something else crunchy.

Marinara Sauce

2 oz. olive oil
1 cup onion, small diced
1 tbsp garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dried oregano
4 c. diced or ground tomatoes (canned)
1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
salt, pepper, sugar to taste

Sweat onions in olive oil in a saucepan. Add garlic, sweat until aromatic. Add oregano, sweat 1 minute. Add tomatoes, simmer 15-20 minutes. Check consistency. Add basil, season to taste.

Source: Chef S. Culp, PA Culinary Institute, Vegetarian Enthusiast course, 2/16/08

Wild Mushroom Risotto

1 onion, diced
1/2 lb. wild mushrooms (or butternut squash, carrots (some pureed, some in chunks), whatever.)
4 tbsp butter or olive oil
5 c. vegetable stock
2 c. Arborio rice
salt and pepper
3/4 c. Parmesan cheese, grated

Melt the butter over medium heat, add onion and mushrooms, stir and cook until onion is soft and translucent (do not brown).
Meanwhile, in a different pan, bring stock to a simmer, and maintain at a simmer.
Once the onion is soft, add rice, cook on medium, stirring constantly, for about 3 minutes. Adjust heat as necessary. Do not brown the rice.
Ladle in the stock, 1/2-3/4 c. at a time. Stir constantly. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the pan so nothing sticks. There should be little bubbles from time to time; if there are more than that, reduce heat to medium-low.
When most of the liquid is absorbed, add a little more, keep stirring, as before. It'll take about 20 minutes to add everything. Taste it to see if it's done. If you need more stock, heat some more up, or use water.
Add salt and pepper, stir, add cheese and stir, serve immediately in warm bowls with extra Parmesan on hand.

Source: Chef S. Culp, PA Culinary Institute, Vegetarian Enthusiast course, 2/16/08

Eggplant Parmesan

2 cups flour
2 oz. milk
4 eggs
4 cups panko bread crumbs
2 eggplants
1 c. marinara sauce
1/2 lb. mozzarella cheese
2 oz. parmesan cheese
1 oz. chopped parsley
oil as needed

Peel and slice eggplant, lightly salt each slice.
Mix egg and milk.
Bread each slice: flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs, place on a parchment-lined sheet.
Heat oil in skillet, pan fry eggplant until golden brown on each side. (a few minutes on each side, a lot of oil)
Top with marinara and mozzarella, bake at 350 until cheese is melted, garnish with parmesan and parsley.

Source: Chef S. Culp, PA Culinary Institute, Vegetarian Enthusiast course, 2/16/08

Marinated asparagus, edamame, and roasted red pepper salad

2 asparagus bundles, cut into 2 inch length
2 red bell peppers, roasted, peeled, julienned
1 cup edamame
1 cup olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 red onion
salt and pepper

Fill 2 sauce pots with water, salt it to seawater taste, boil, blanch asparagus for 30 seconds, edamame for 1 minute, shock in ice water. Roast peppers on an open flame until skin is black, place in bowl covered with saran wrap.
Peel peppers, deseet, cut into 2 inch fine strips.
Combine vinegar, onion, oregano, oil in a blender, pulse until blended. Season with salt and pepper.
Combine peppers, asparagus, edamame, and coat with dressing.

Source: Chef S. Culp, PA Culinary Institute, Vegetarian Enthusiast course, 2/16/08

Multi Bean Chili

1 oz. vegetable oil
8 oz. onion, diced
4 oz. red and green bell peppers, diced
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp oregano
2 tsp garlic, minced
1 chipotle pepper, minced (from can)
1 tsp adobo sauce (from chipotle pepper can)
20 oz. assorted beans (recipe used 8 oz. pinto, 4 oz. kidney, 4 oz. black, 4 oz. garbanzo), cooked
2 green hot peppers
1 pt. vegetable stock
2 c. diced tomatoes in juice

Sweat onions and peppers in oil. Add garlic, cumin, chili powder, oregano. Cook until garlic aroma is apparent (do not burn). Add all other ingredients. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 30 minutes until flavors marry and consistency thickens. Adjust seasonings and/or consistency (w/ cornstarch slurry).

Source: Chef S. Culp, PA Culinary Institute, Vegetarian Enthusiast course, 2/16/08

Monday, June 30, 2008

Watermelon and Tomato Salad

Watermelon and tomato are two fruits that complement each another in an unusual way. When you cut up and combine them, their distinctions become a little blurry and each masquerades as the other. The tomato’s acidity becomes tamed, as does the melon’s sweetness; their juices mingle, and even their flesh seems to meld.

Yield 4 servings

Time 15 minutes

Mark Bittman

There’s crunch in this salad, from an unusual source: the seeds, in limited quantities at least, are not only tolerable but an asset.


* 2 1/2 cups seedless watermelon, in 1-inch cubes or balls (cut over a bowl to catch the juice and reserve it)
* 1 1/2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
* 1/2 cup finely diced or crumbled Stilton, Gorgonzola, Roquefort or Maytag blue cheese
* 1/2 cup minced scallions
* Salt
* 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
* 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
* Pinch cayenne
* 1/2 cup cilantro or parsley, roughly chopped


* 1. Combine the watermelon, tomato, cheese, scallions and salt in a bowl.
* 2. Whisk or blend together about 2 tablespoons of the watermelon juice, oil, vinegar and cayenne. To serve, dress the salad with this mixture and garnish with cilantro. Do not refrigerate and serve within 30 minutes.

Source: The New York Times

Dan's note: feta cheese works, as does balsamic vinegar instead of sherry. It'll make a pretty watery, soupy salad- people might not want to eat it. Maybe you can drain it or something. It's very tasty, though!

Orzo soup

Orzo Soup Recipe

For some added flavor, or to take this soup in another direction, toss the tomatoes with somewhere between a teaspoon + of adobo sauce (from can of chipotles)....more or less depending on how spicy you like your food.

7 cups vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups whole wheat orzo (or other small pasta i.e. pastina)
2 cups chard or spinach, chopped
1 14-ounce can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes, well drained
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes.
good quality extra virgin olive oil
3 egg whites
fine grain sea salt

some grated Parmesan cheese (to finish)

Bring the broth to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the orzo and cook until just tender - about ten minutes. Stir in the chopped spinach.

In the meantime, heat the tomatoes, red pepper flakes and a splash of extra virgin olive oil in a separate saucepan. Taste, and salt a bit if needed.

Just before serving, Slowly pour the egg whites into the soup, stirring quickly with a whisk. The whites should take on a raggy appearance. Taste and add more salt if needed. Serve the soup in individual bowls, with each serving topped with a generous spoonful of tomatoes, a drizzle of olive oil, and dusting of cheese.

Makes 4-6 servings.


Friday, June 27, 2008

Mashed potatoes with roasted garlic

A bunch of potatoes
Some garlic
Salt and pepper

Roast garlic at 350 for 20 minutes.
Start potatoes in cool salted water, boil them, drain water well. Put through food mill, meat grinder, ricer, masher, or mixer with roasted garlic. Don't over-whip or they'll get gluey and shiny. Mix them as little as possible. Add butter and milk or cream, ratio 1:3. Salt and pepper to taste.

Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06

Thanksgiving ideas

Roast turkey
Mixed field greens with cranberry-walnut vinaigrette, pecans, blue cheese
Cranberry sauce
Sage sausage stuffing
Mashed potatoes with roasted garlic
Sweet potatoes
Roast cauliflower (cauliflower + seasoned salt + olive oil, roast 20-30 min, turning once)
Brussels sprouts (boil until tender, put in ice water, cut in half, saute with bacon and onions)
Carrots with dill (boil carrots, put in bowl, add butter and dill)
Green beans almondine (parboil beans, saute almonds in butter on low, remove almonds and saute beans, then add almonds)
Spaghetti squash (roast in water 30 min, then cook like pasta)
Broccoli (put in boiling salted water for 1 minute, dip in ice water)
Pumpkin pie
Pecan pie

Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06

Pumpkin Pie filling

10 oz. sugar (about 1 1/4 c.)
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp ground cloves
2 eggs
6 oz. evaporated milk
5 oz. heavy cream
1 lb. pumpkin puree

Combine all ingredients except pumpkin puree, mix until smooth, strain. Add pumpkin, mix until smooth. Fill two pie shells 1/4" from the top. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes then at 350 until set.
Variations: substitute cooked and sieved sweet potatoes for pumpkin puree, or substitute half brown sugar for the sugar, or omit cloves, or use just evaporated milk instead of cream.

Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06

Pecan pie filling

About 1/4 cup pastry flour
About 1 1/2 cup brown sugar
20 oz. light corn syrup (like karo)
10 fl. oz. eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 oz. salt
4 oz. melted butter (1 stick)
8 oz. pecans

Combine all ingredients except pecans. Pour pecans evenly over two unbaked pie crusts. Pour filling until 1/4" from top. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes, then 325 until set. Can add 2 oz. chocolate chips or 1 oz. coconut per pie.

Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06

Cheese sauce

2 tbsp butter or vegetable oil
3 tbsp flour
22oz-3 cups milk
1/2 bay leaf
4 oz. American cheese, grated
4 oz. cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
few drops tabasco sauce
salt to taste

Combine flour and butter in small saucepan, melt, make a "white roux" (shorter cooking time than a blond or brown roux). Add half the milk, turn up heat to low simmer, stir frequently, make sure roux mixes evenly and doesn't stick in corners. After it thickens a bit, add the rest of the milk, simmer 15-20 minutes.

Turn sauce to low, start sprinkling American cheese in, constantly stirring, until it's all incorporated. Turn off burner and do the same with cheddar. Stir in seasonings, adjust to taste.

Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06
Dan's notes: You can tinker with the cheese choice. American is very soft and processed, so you can add it with the sauce on low; cheddar is a little harder, so add it bit by bit. If the sauce is too hot, it'll all coagulate.

Sage sausage stuffing

2 lb dry bread, as dry as possible, in 1 inch cubes. Can add a little pumpernickel or rye, but not too much.
8 oz. sausage (best quality possible)
1 c. onion, small diced
3/4 c. celery, small diced
1 c. mushrooms, sliced (optional)
1/2 tbsp sage, dried
1 tsp fresh thyme
fresh rosemary (not dried), optional
2-3 c. chicken stock (ideally organic. well, ideally homemade.)

Cook sausage, break into small pieces, remove from pan. Cook vegetables in remaining rendered fat. Add seasonings, cook 3 more minutes. Add to bread cubes. Add a little stock, mix completely, check consistency, and keep adding stock in small amounts until achieving desired consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Put in buttered baking dish, pressing into edges. Cover with foil, bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. (if you want a crust, remove foil for the last 5-10 minutes)

Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06

Glazed Sweet Potatoes

2 - 2 1/2 lb. sweet potatoes/yams (the orange ones)
8 oz. canned pineapple, small diced
2 oz. lemon juice
8 oz. brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
2 oz. butter

Peel and cut sweet potatoes into 1 inch cubes, boil in salted water until 3/4 cooked. Combine the other ingredients in small stainless steel pan, bring to simmer and turn off. Pour mixture over sweet potatoes in wide stainless steel saucepan, gently simmer while turning potatoes until thick syrup forms.
Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06
Dan's notes: can use crushed pineapple instead.

Cranberry Sauce

12 oz. fresh cranberries
1 c. water
1 c. sugar
2 cinnamon sticks
3 cloves
1/2 orange peel
1 orange's juice

Combine ingredients in small saucepan. Simmer until most cranberries split, about 4 minutes. Allow to cool, then remove orange peel, cinnamon sticks, and cloves.

Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06

Cranberry-walnut Vinaigrette

2 oz. white balsamic vinegar (or substitute apple cider vinegar for part of it)
2 oz. cranberry juice
2 oz. walnut oil
2 oz. olive oil
1 tbsp. shallots, minced
1/2 tbsp dijon mustard
1/2 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp black pepper
salt as needed

Combine and blend. Makes 1 cup.

Source: Thanksgiving Dinner class, PA Culinary Institute, Chef Don Hutchins, 11/12/06

Aunt Vi Bitonti's Tomato Sauce

1 onion
2 cloves garlic
1 can, 29oz. sauce (preferably Delallos, Dei Fratelli, or Red Pack)
1 1/2- 1 3/4 cans water
Garlic powder, a couple shakes
Dried parsley, 3-4 shakes
Fresh basil, a couple leaves, break up and throw in
Dried sweet basil, a couple shakes
Olive oil

Cut onion into fourths, break apart, do not chop. Saute in a sauce pan with olive oil until glassy, add garlic. Add all other ingredients. Bring to a boil, lower heat, simmer 45 minutes. Pick out the onion and serve.

Source: Aunt Vi c/o Aunt Jill and Uncle Marc

Pumpkin Pie Pinwheel Cookies

From Emeril Live TV show, Food Network, c/o Alisha Payton, Louisville, KY, c/o Lawrenceville "Joy of Cookies" cookie tour, 2007

2 c. flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 c. butter, softened
1 1/4 c. sugar
1 egg
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 c. canned pumpkin
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 c. plus 1 c. brown sugar
whipped cream and ground nutmeg for serving, optional

Preheat oven to 375.

Sift flour, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt together twice. Cream butter and sugar in a stand mixer until light and fluffy. Combine egg, vanilla, and almond extract, and add to creamed mixture. Mix on medium until combined. Add sifted ingredients and mix only until combined; dough should be stiff.

Roll dough out between 2 sheets of parchment paper to a 12"x9" rectangle, using 1 long sheet of parchment paper folded in half. Make sure you roll out the dough evenly. Cut the edges off neatly with a bench scraper to even them. Place dough in the freezer until firm, about 15 minutes.

Mix together the pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, and 1/4 c. brown sugar for filling.

Remove dough from freezer, peel back the top parchment paper. Thinly spread the pumpkin filling evenly over the dough. Don't spread too thickly; you should still be able to see the dough slightly through the pumpkin. If you don't use all the filling, it's okay.

Starting at one end, roll up the ends in the same manner as a caker oll. Make sure to keep it tight and even. If the dough cracks slightly, rub it together with your fingers. Wrap the roll in the parchment paper, seam side down, and place back in the freezer until firm, about 1 hour.

Slice cookies 1/4" thick, and place onto a cookie sheet at least 1" apart. Sprinkle brown sugar on the tops of the cookies and rub it in with your fingers. Bake 8-10 minutes, just until the edges are turning brown.

Serve cookies on a platter with a small bowl of whipped cream and nutmeg so guests can make pumpkin pie pinwheel sandwiches.

White chocolate-coconut cookies

White chocolate-coconut cookies
From Paula's Home Cooking TV show, Food Network, courtesy Paula Deen, 2007, c/o Lawrenceville "Joy of Cookies" tour, December 2007

1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
2 1/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
8 oz. butter, softened (2 sticks)
1/2 c. packed light brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 c. quick oats
3/4 c. shredded coconut flakes

8 oz. white chocolate, melted
3/4 c. toasted, shredded coconut flakes

Preheat oven to 350. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together baking powder, soda, flour, and salt. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and brown sugar together until light and fluffy with a hand-held electric mixer. Beat in the egg. Add the dry ingredients, beat until just combined. Fold in the oats, vanilla, and 3/4 c. shredded coconut flakes.

Form walnut-sized balls of the mixture and drop 2" apart onto parchment paper-lined sheet pans. Bake in preheated oven for about 10 minutes until the bottoms of the cookies are golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely.

When the cookies are cool, dip halfway into the melted white chocolate and then into toasted shredded coconut flakes. Set them on parchment-lined sheet pans to dry completely.

Mocha Viennese Swirls

Mocha Viennese Swirls
From International Cookie Cookbook, by Nancy Baggett, c/o Lawrenceville "Joy of Cookies" tour, December 2007

9 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 c. unsalted butter ("scant 1 c." so maybe just less than 1 c.)
1/2 c. confectioner's sugar
2 tbsp strong black coffee
1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 c. cornstarch
about 20 blanched almonds

Preheat oven to 375. Lightly grease two large baking sheets. Melt 4 oz of the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of hot water. Cream the butter with the confectioner's sugar in a bowl until smooth and pale. Beat in the melted chocolate, then the strong black coffee.

Sift the flour and cornstarch over the mixture. Fold in lightly and evenly to make a soft mixture.

Spoon the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a large star nozzle and pipe 20 swirls on the prepared baking sheets, allowing room for spreading during baking. (if it's too stiff to pipe, add a little more coffee) Bake about 15 minutes, until the cookies are firm and just beginning to brown. Cool about 10 minutes on the baking sheets, then lift carefully on to a wire rack to cool completely.

Melt the rest of the chocolate, dip each swirl, place on a sheet of baking parchment, and set. Makes 20 cookies.

Dan's note: we skipped the piping stuff.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Monica's Vegetable and Seitan Stew

Monica's Vegetable and Seitan Stew


* 1 cup uncooked brown rice
* 2 1/2 cups water
* 1 quart vegetable broth
* 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with garlic
* 1 (8 ounce) package seitan
* 1 cup cauliflower
* 2 carrots, chopped
* 1/2 cup chopped fresh green beans
* 1/4 cup sliced green onions
* celery salt to taste


1. In a pot, bring the rice and water to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 45 minutes.
2. In a separate pot, bring the broth to a boil. Stir in the tomatoes, seitan, cauliflower, carrots, green beans, and green onions. Reduce heat to low, and simmer 10 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Season with celery salt, and serve in bowls over the cooked rice.

Dan's note: good brown rice makes this a lot more interesting

Tuscan Stir Fried Vegetables and Potatoes Pesto

Tuscan Stir Fried Vegetables and Potatoes Pesto
Chef Christopher Sotkovsky, CEC, CCE, from PA Culinary Institute
Yield: 8 servings

3 potatoes, boiled in their skins
2 cloves minced garlic
1 medium eggplant, cut into small cubes
1 yellow squash, sliced 1/4" thick
1 green pepper, in 1/8" strips
3 tbsp olive oil
Tuscan Spice Mix to taste
1/4 cup pesto sauce
4 sun dried tomatoes, cut into thin strips
3 tbsp chicken stock or water

After cooking potatoes, slice into 1/2 inch rounds
Heat oil in a wok, fry potatoes for 30 seconds
Add garlic, eggplant, squash, peppers, saute a few minutes, season to taste
Add pesto, sun dried tomatoes, chicken stock, toss and cover to finish cooking (about 2 minutes)
Taste and season if necessary. Serve with crusty bread and olice oil.

Tuscan Spice Mix (20 servings):
1 tbsp dried parsley flakes
2 tbsp dried or fresh rosemary
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried sage
1 tbsp dried garlic flakees
2 tbsp kosher/sea salt
1 tbsp cracked black pepper
1 tsp red pepper flakes
Place herbs in coffee grinder, pulse to chop into fine pieces. Add salt and pepper, mix well.

Dan's note: good flavor. I liked it.

Turkey chili

Turkey Chili
6 servings

1 lb lean ground turkey
1 cup chicken bouillion
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cans chunky tomato sauce
1 can (6oz) tomato paste
1 can (6oz) water
2 cans dark kidney beans
2 tbsp lite soy sauce
1.5 tbsp chili powder
1/4 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tbsp brown sugar

Brown turkey in a little broth in a large pot. Separately, saute onion, pepper, and garlic in more broth. Add all ingredients together. Simmer 1/2-1 hr.
Dan's note: this is not spicy at all. Also, instead of 2 cans of chunky tomato sauce, I've used 2 cans of diced tomatoes. Or I've just left out the tomatoes, that works too. I think I left out the chicken broth too.
Source: Mom

Three-cup Chicken

Three-Cup Chicken
This is a traditional Taiwanese dish that we always order in our favorite Chinese restaurant. I begged the chef for this recipe and he very reluctantly gave it to me! I just made it for dinner tonight and couldn't wait to post this to share it with all of you!
1/3 cup sesame oil
20 garlic cloves, minced (yes, twenty!)
10 slices thin fresh ginger
2 serrano peppers, thinly sliced with seeds
2 lbs chicken breasts or chicken thigh pieces, cut up into bite-size pieces
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup rice wine
3 tablespoons sugar
2 cups Thai basil
1 cup of 1-inch sections scallions

1. Heat up the sesame oil in a wok or a large skillet on high heat.
2. Add garlic, ginger and serrano peppers, stir fry until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
3. Add the chicken pieces and cook until it's white in color, about 5 minutes.
4. Stir together the soy sauce, rice wine and sugar in a bowl, pour over chicken.
5. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat to medium.
6. Let cook, uncovered, until sauce thickens, about 30 minutes.
7. Turn heat back up to high and add basil and scallions, cook for another 2 minutes.
8. Serve over steamed rice.

Dan's notes: also works with tofu and tempeh (particularly good with tempeh). Maybe a little too sweet. Reduce the sugar a bit and it's great. Fast too.

Chicken and Vegetable Cashew Stir Fry

Chicken and Vegetable Cashew Stir Fry
Chef Christopher Sotkovsky, CEC, CCE
Yield: 4 servings

2 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp hoisin sauce
1 tbsp miso paste or oyster sauce
1 tsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp chili garlic sauce
1/2 cup chicken broth (low sodium)

2 tbsp safflower or canola oil
1 tsp fresh grated ginger
1 tsp garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup scallions, sliced thinly
8 oz-1 lb chicken or tofu, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 cups vegetables, sliced thin (any vegetables, and/or baby corn and water chestnuts)
2 cups sprouts and shoots, fresh
1/2 cup roasted cashews

Mix first 7 ingredients in jar, shake until smooth.
Heat wok over high heat until a drop of water evaporates within 1-2 seconds of contact. Add 2 tbsp oil. When oil begins to smoke, add ginger and garlic, and stir-fry 5 seconds, then add scallions and stir-fry 30 seconds. Add chicken, stir-fry 30 seconds. Add rest of vegetables and stir-fry until softened, 3-5 minutes.
Shake broth mixture, pour into wok and stir-fry until sauce is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Return mixture just to a boil, top with cashews, toss and serve.

Southwest-spiced Roasted Pork Tenderloin

Southwest-spiced Roasted Pork Tenderloin

1 whole pork tenderloin
1 tbsp paprika
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp chili powder
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp black pepper

Heat oven to 425. In small bowl stir together all ingredients except pork to make 1/4 cup. Season tenderloin with 2 tbsp. of rub. Place meat in shallow pan, roast 35 minutes or 155 degrees. Let stand 5 min. and slice.

Red Chili Chicken Enchiladas

Red Chili Chicken Enchiladas Recipe

Ninety-five percent of the time when we have enchiladas, it is my mom's (amazingly good, incredibly awesome) cheese enchiladas. Once in a while however, she'll make chicken enchiladas. With chicken enchiladas she often uses a red chili sauce which is spicier than the green chiles of the cheese enchiladas. Sometimes she uses canned enchiladas sauce, sometimes she makes it from scratch. Sometimes she coats the tortillas in sauce before cooking them, sometimes she doesn't. Every time she cooks it is an improvisation, so it can be difficult to pin her down on any one method or another. I've presented here her basic methods, with the variations.

1 small onion, chopped (about a cup)
Vegetable oil - grapeseed or olive
2 small cloves garlic, minced
1 14.5-ounce can tomatoes, preferably fire-roasted if you can get it
2 Tbsp red chili powder
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup to a cup of water

12 corn tortillas
Grapeseed oil, peanut oil or canola oil - a high smoke point vegetable oil such as one of these

2-3 cups of cooked chicken, shredded or chopped
2 cups grated cheese (about 1/3 lb)

1 Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2 Prepare the sauce. Coat a large skillet with oil and sauté the onions on medium heat until translucent, a few minutes. Add the garlic for a minute more. While the onions are cooking, purée the canned tomatoes in a blender. Add the tomatoes to the onions and garlic. Bring to a low simmer. Start adding the chili powder, one teaspoon at a time, tasting after each addition, until you get to the desired level of heat and chili flavor. For us that's around 2 Tablespoons. But it depends on your taste and how strong the chili powder is that you are using. Note that the tortillas and chicken will absorb some of the heat, so allow for that and let it be a little bit spicier than what you want in the finished dish. Add a teaspoon of sugar if necessary to cut down on the acid from the tomatoes. You want more of the taste of the chili and less of the tomatoes for this sauce. As the sauce simmers, dilute it with water to keep it from getting to thick as it simmers. Remove from heat.

Alternatively, use a prepared canned enchilada sauce, which can be perfectly fine.

3 Mix in 1/4 cup of the sauce with the cooked chicken, and a 1/4 cup of the cheese. Sprinkle with a little salt. Set aside.

4 Prepare the tortillas. There are 2 basic ways to prepare the tortillas - the traditional way of dipping them in the sauce and heating them individually, and my mom's way when she is trying to cut down on the fat.

First the traditional way. Heat a small light skillet on med-high heat. Add a teaspoon of oil (high smoke point oil as indicated above, we use grapeseed oil) to coat the pan. Dip a tortilla in the sauce to coat the tortilla with sauce on both sides. Place the tortilla in the skillet and heat for a few seconds, until the tortilla begin to show some air bubbles. Use a metal spatula to flip to the other side for a few more seconds. Set aside on a plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas. Proceed to the step 5.

For my mom's low-fat method of heating up the tortillas, she places a small amount of oil in the skillet to coat the pan. Add a tortilla, flip it to its other side. Then add another tortilla on top of the first to soak up some of the excess oil. Flip them both together and add yet another tortilla. Keep adding them wherever there seems to be some excess oil. The idea is to heat the tortillas and soften them with the minimum amount of oil. As the tortillas become soft and heated, remove them to a paper towel to soak up even more excess oil. If you find you need more oil in the pan, add it. With this method, you do NOT get the chili flavor infused in the tortillas. It is a matter of preference. I prefer the first method, excess oil or not, because it has a much richer and spicier flavor. But as my mom says, "Anything goes. This is just a guideline; do what you want."

Note that because we made this batch the low-fat way, the following photos show tortillas not coated in chili sauce, but the method is the same for if you did.

5 Assemble the enchiladas. Use an 8x12 inch pyrex baking dish. Place a couple spoonfuls of the chicken mixture in the center of a tortilla and roll it up. Place in the baking dish and repeat until all dozen of your tortillas are neatly placed in rows in the casserole dish. Cover the tortillas rolls with the remaining sauce.

Sprinkle with the remaining grated cheese. Note that I recall often eating these chicken enchiladas with very little cheese on them. Instead we had probably 2/3 cup of chopped fresh onion that had been soaked in vinegar sprinkled over the top. (My mom, bless her soul, has no recollection of the chicken enchiladas without the sprinkled cheese. But she's in her 70s and sometimes doesn't remember these things. Or she remembers later and doesn't remember that she ever forgot them in the first place. But heck, I'm in my 40s and my memory isn't what it used to be either.)

6 Place in the oven and cook for 10 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly.

Use a metal spatula to serve.

Serve with thinly sliced iceberg lettuce that has been seasoned with vinegar and salt (no oil), guacamole or avocado slices, and sour cream. Garnish with cilantro.

Serves 4.

Dan's notes: Make more sauce- maybe double the recipe. The first way of frying the tortillas is easier.

Pork Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Pork Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Can be prepared in 1 1/2 hours.

My old neighborhood in San Francisco used to have a fabulous Hungarian restaurant where I loved to go for pork stuffed cabbage rolls. The restaurant has since gone out of business, but my love for the dish remains. We made these cabbage rolls again this weekend, for Some Pig Blogging Weekend, a food blogging event in honor of San Antonio Abate, the Patron Saint of farmyard animals, who's feast day is January 17th.

2 lbs sauerkraut
1 large head green cabbage
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onions
1/4 tsp of finely chopped garlic
1 lb ground lean pork
1/4 cup rice, cooked in boiling salted water (yielding 3/4 cup cooked)
2 lightly beaten eggs
2 tbsp sweet Hungarian paprika
1/8 tsp marjoram
1 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper
1 cup water mixed with 1 cup tomato puree
1 cup sour cream

1 Wash the sauerkraut in cold water, then soak in cold water 10-20 minutes to reduce sourness. (Make sure you don't skip this step!) Squeeze dry and set aside. In a large saucepan, bring to a boil enough salted water to cover the cabbage. Add the cabbage, turn the heat to low and simmer 8 minutes. Remove the cabbage and let it drain while it cools enough to handle. Pull off 16 large unbroken leaves and lay them on paper towels to drain and cool further.

2 In a 10-inch skillet, saute the onions and garlic in olive oil, until the onions are lightly colored. In a large mixing bowl, combine the pork, rice, eggs, paprika, marjoram, the onion-garlic mixture, salt and a few grindings of black pepper. Mix well with a fork or wooden spoon.

3 Place 2 tablespoons of the stuffing in the center of one of the wilted cabbage leaves and, beginning with the thick end of the leaf, fold over the sides, then roll the whole leaf tightly, as you would a small bundle. Repeat with more leaves until all the stuffing has been used.

4 Spread the sauerkraut on the bottom of a 5-quart casserole and arrange the cabbage rolls on top of it. Add the water mixed with the tomato puree. Bring the liquid to a boil, then cover the pan tightly and cook the stuffed cabbage over low heat for 1 hour. Transfer the rolls from the casserole to a warm plate. Stir in the sour cream to the sauerkraut. Simmer another 5 minutes. Lift the sauerkraut onto a serving platter with a slotted spoon. Arrange the cabbage rolls on the sauerkraut and pour some of the sauce over them. Serve the rest of the sauce in a sauceboat.

Serves 4-6.

Dan's note: The sour cream is unnecessary. It can be hard to get enough big enough cabbage leaves, so make sure to put a big spoonful in each one. Other than that, I'm a fan.


Greek Moussaka

This is the most delicious Greek moussaka recipe that I have come across, and being Greek born I have tryed many different recipes over the years. I make this often, it is a family favorite at my house, I have even served this many times to guests for a dinner party, everyone loves it, I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
2 medium eggplants
vegetable oil
1 lb lean ground beef
2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon fresh minced garlic (or more if desired)
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 tsp dried oregano (or to taste)
1 tsp salt, divided (or to taste)
black pepper
2-3 tbsp butter or margarine
2 tbsp flour
1 cup half-and-half cream
1 egg
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (can use more)

1. Peel the eggplants, slice 1/4-inch thick.
2. Brush cookie sheet with oil.
3. Coat each side of sliced eggplant with oil; place on cookie sheet; broil under the broiler until brown; turn and broil the other side, brushing with oil if needed; repeat with all eggplant slices.
4. In the bottom of a greased 9 x 9-inch baking pan, arrange half of the eggplant slices.
5. In a large skillet, combine beef and onions; cook, stirring until the beef is no longer pink, and the onions are soft; drain fat.
6. Add in the garlic, tomato sauce, oregano, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper to taste; pour mixture over eggplant slices.
7. Arrange the remaining eggplant slices over the beef mixture.
8. PREPARE THE CHEESE SAUCE: Melt the butter in a saucepan, whisk in flour, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper to taste; gradually stir in half and half or milk, cook and stir over medium heat until thick and bubbly.
9. In a small bowl, beat egg; stir in some of the hot sauce, then add egg to sauce mixture, mix well; add in Parmesan cheese, and stir again.
10. Pour the cheese sauce over mixture in baking dish.
11. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven, for 45 minutes.
12. Cut into squares.
13. Note: If doubling this recipe (to serve 8), it is best to make two separate casseroles, instead of one larger one.

Dan's note: also make sure your pan isn't too big; otherwise everything gets too thin.

Moroccan Vegetable Stew with Couscous

Moroccan Vegetable Stew with Couscous

Recipe By : Jump Up & Kiss Me/

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion -- chopped
6 cloves garlic -- minced
2 whole red potatoes -- diced
1 cup carrot -- diced
2 teaspoons cardamom -- ground
1 zucchini -- cut in half and sliced
1 yellow squash -- cut in half-moons, sliced
1/2 cauliflower florets
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper -- ground
1 teaspoon cayenne -- ground
1/2 cup raisins or currants -- soaked 15 minutes in warm water to plump
16 ounces tomato -- diced
15 ounces tomato sauce
2 tablespoons honey
15 ounces garbanzo beans
6 cups water
3 cups couscous -- uncooked
1/2 cup dried figs -- coarsely chopped
1/3 cup almonds -- sliced
1 pint plain yogurt -- for garnish
1 bunch fresh mint -- chopped, for garnish

In a heavy stockpot, heat the olive oil and saute the onion, garlic, potatoes, carrots, and cardamom. Stir until fragrant, then add the zucchini, yellow squash, and cauliflower. Add curry powder, salt, black pepper, and cayenne and stir. Drain the raisins and add to the pot along with the tomatoes, tomato sauce, honey, and garbanzo beans. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender, adding up to 1 cup of water if the stew appears dry.
While the stew is cooking, bring the water to a boil in a saucepan and stir in the couscous. Cook for 1 minute, then cover and turn off the heat, letting the couscous sit for 10 minutes. After the couscous has sat for 5 minutes, stir the figs and almonds into the stew.
To serve, fluff up the couscous with a fork. Spoon a mound of couscous on each plate and form a well in the center. Ladle a portion of stew into the well. Garnish with several tablespoons of the yogurt and fresh mint. Serve the remaining yogurt on the side.

NOTES : The Jump Up and Kiss Me Spicy Vegetarian Cooking by Jennifer Trainer Thompson was called to the attention of the Food/Wine group by Brenda Adams. Thanks Brenda, it's a wonderful cookbook published by Ten Speed Press of Berkeley, CA.

Serves 6 to 8
Moroccan food is startlingly aromatic. Perfumed with the fragrance of cardamom and accented with the sweetness of currants, one bite of this spicy stew will have you thinking you've just arrived in the city of Fez for a culinary adventure. It's delicious served with Fennel Salad

Dan's notes: Good stew! It's perfect amount of spicy, and the figs make it the perfect amount of sweet. The mint and yogurt really add something too.

Moroccan Meat Loaf

Moroccan Meat Loaf

The good folks at Niman Ranch recently sent me a few lamb recipes to try from their new cookbook, the Niman Ranch Cookbook. Being huge meat loaf fans, we were immediately drawn to the Moroccan Meat Loaf recipe from Chef Monica Pope, of T'Afia in Houston, Texas. If you like lamb, you will love this Moroccan meat loaf. If you don't like lamb, I'm willing to bet this meat loaf will convert you. It is superb - spicy, with hints of cilantro and mint. The recipe calls for a pomegranate barbecue sauce to accompany the meat loaf. We made the sauce, which is excellent, but honestly, the next time we make this we'll skip the sauce. It's just unnecessary. Its own spiciness almost competes with the flavors of the meatloaf. I've included the recipe below, but you really don't need it. Plain ketchup will do, if you have to have ketchup with your meatloaf, but just the drippings themselves are sufficient and delicious.

The original recipe calls for 1/4 teaspoon of saffron threads to go along with the other spices. I don't like saffron (everyone has their preferences when it comes to food, and I have mine), so we kept it out. It is not in the following recipe listed, but feel free to put it back in there if you want to follow the recipe as its author intended.

2 lbs ground lamb
1 lb ground beef
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
1 large celery stalk, chopped
2 Tbsp chopped garlic (about 6 cloves)
2 Tbsp minced fresh ginger (3-inch piece)
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups dried bread crumbs
2 small eggs
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 Tbsp chopped fresh mint

1 Preheat the oven to 350°F. Combine the lamb and beef in a large bowl. Set aside.

2 Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, and ginger and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent. Add the salt, paprika, cumin, curry powder, cayenne, cinnamon, and pepper. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes to release the flavors. Remove from heat and let cool for 10-15 minutes.

3 Stir the vegetables into the ground meat. Mix in the bread crumbs, eggs, cilantro, and mint. Transfer to a 1 1/2 quart loaf pan and set in a baking pan. Pour water into the baking pan to reach halfway up the sides of the loaf pan.

4 Bake the meat loaf for 1 1/2 hours, or until firm and cooked through. Let rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Unmold onto a plate and slice. Serve with optional Pomegranate BBQ sauce, ketchup, or just the drippings from the meatloaf itself. Very good served with rice pilaf.

Serves 6-8.

Dan's note: This is great! I made it with parsley instead of cilantro, and 3 lb ground beef instead of 1 lb beef and 2 lb lamb. Tastes vaguely middle eastern- I don't know if it's Moroccan style. But it is tasty.

Moroccan Chicken with Lemon and Olives

Moroccan Chicken with Lemon and Olives

A month ago or so I bought a tagine, an earthenware cooking and serving pot, with which to experiment. My first foray into cooking with the tagine was with this Moroccan chicken dish which turned out beautifully - succulent, tender, and full of flavor. This recipe is pulled together and adapted from various sources including the New York Times, The New Basics Cookbook, and recipes by Le Souk Ceramique, the maker of my tagine. Preserved lemon is traditionally called for in this dish, although I know of people who just add thin slices of lemon and don't bother with finding or making preserved lemon.

2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon tumeric
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 chicken, 3-4 lbs, cut into 8 pieces (or 3-4 lbs of just chicken thighs and legs, the dark meat is more flavorful)

3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped

The peel from 1 preserved lemon, rinsed in cold water, pulp discarded, peel cut into thin strips
1 cup green olives, pitted
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup raisins

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1 Combine all the spices in a large bowl. Pat dry the chicken pieces and put in the bowl, coat well with the spice mixture. Let the chicken stand for one hour in the spices.

2 In a large, heavy bottomed skillet, heat the olive oil on medium high heat. Add the chicken pieces, sprinkle lightly with salt (go easy on the salt, the olives and lemons are salty), and brown, skin side down for five minutes. (If you are using a clay tagine, you will skip the browning step, heat only to medium heat and use a heat diffuser on the heating element to prevent the tagine from cracking.) Lower the heat to medium-low, add the garlic and onions. Cover and let cook for 15 minutes.

3 Turn chicken pieces over. Add the lemon slices, olives, raisins, and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a simmer on medium heat, then lower the heat to low, cover, and cook for an additional 30 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and quite tender.

4 Mix in fresh parsley and cilantro right before serving. Adjust seasonings to taste.

Serves 4 to 6. Serve with couscous, rice, or rice pilaf.

Dan's notes: Needs flavor. "Marinate" in the spices for at least an hour. I made it with boneless chicken breasts, maybe the dark meat is better. I used lemon rind, too- grate it so you don't get a big chunk of lemon rind.

Mojo Stir Fry

Mojo Stir Fry
Chef Christopher Sotkovsky, CEC, CCE, from PA Culinary Institute
Yield: 4 servings

Cuban in origin, I have adapted this sauce to be used in combination with your favorite meat and vegetable combinations. You can make a large batch of this sauce and whip up a market basket stir fry, using the best fresh local seasonal ingredients.

2 cloves garlic, minced
3 limes, juiced
2 oranges, zested and juiced
1 tsp chili garlic paste
2 tbsp Maggi seasoning, or Kitchen Bouquet
1/2 cup water
3 tbsp molasses
1 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp smoked spanish paprika
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp cornstarch

2 tbsp olive oil
1 lb beef, pork, chicken, or shrimp, sliced thin
1 lb vegetables- onions, peppers, zucchini, etc
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp chili powder
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp cilantro, minced
2 tbsp parsley, minced

Mix all sauce ingredients in a quart-size mason jar with lid. Can be stored in refrigerator for up to one month.
Prepare meat and vegetables. Heat a wok until very hot. Add half the oil, fry meat, remove from pan when browned. Add remaining oil. Reheat pan, add garlic and vegetables. Stir fry a few minutes, then add chili powder. When vegetables are tender and crisp, add meat. Shake up sauce and pur in enough to coat the meat and vegetables. Heat to thicken, serve with rice, cuban flat bread, and hot sauce.

Dan's note: very good. I might go a little easier on the orange juice in the sauce- it gets a little thin and citrusy.



1 lb bulk italian sausage
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tbsp basil
1 1/2 tsp salt
6 oz water
1 15oz can tomatoes
2 6oz cans tomato paste
10 oz lasagna
2 eggs, beaten
3 cups (24oz) cottage cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
2 tbsp parsley flakes
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 lb mozzarella, sliced

Saute sausage and garlic over medium heat. Drain fat, if any. Add basil, salt, water, tomatoes, tomato paste.
Boil, drain, rinse lasagna.
Mix eggs, cottage cheese, parmesan cheese, parsley, salt, pepper in a bowl.
Layer in a 13x9 pan: 1/2 noodles, cheese mix, cheese slices, sauce. Repeat. Bake at 375 for 30 min.

Source: Mom

Irish Beef Stew

Irish Beef Stew Recipe

"Have I got the best recipe for you!" my friend Tomas announced, upon his return from a recent trip to photographing vineyards in Italy. "It's an Irish beef stew," he added, "and it's the best thing I've ever had." Apparently the chef at one of the wineries Tom was visiting prepared this stew for Tom, based on a Bon Appetit recipe, with the main difference being the substitution of Guinness (a very dark beer) and excellent red wine for some of the beef stock the recipe called for. Always eager to try new recipes with friends, I made my way to Tom's house and we cooked this up together for his family. As I suspected, the addition of Guinness and red wine makes all the difference.

1/4 cup olive oil
1 1/4 pounds stew beef, cut into 1-inch pieces
6 large garlic cloves, minced
6 cups beef stock or canned beef broth
1 cup of Guinness beer
1 cup of fine red wine
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
3 pounds russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 7 cups)
1 large onion, chopped
2 cups 1/2-inch pieces peeled carrots
Salt and Pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1 Heat olive oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add beef and sauté until brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute. Add beef stock, Guinness, red wine, tomato paste, sugar, thyme, Worcestershire sauce and bay leaves. Stir to combine. Bring mixture to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, then cover and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

2 While the meet and stock is simmering, melt butter in another large pot over medium heat. Add potatoes, onion and carrots. Sauté vegetables until golden, about 20 minutes.

3 Add vegetables to beef stew. Simmer uncovered until vegetables and beef are very tender, about 40 minutes. Discard bay leaves. Tilt pan and spoon off fat. Transfer stew to serving bowl. Sprinkle with parsley and serve. (Can be prepared up to 2 days ahead. Salt and pepper to taste. Cool slightly. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and refrigerate. Bring to simmer before serving.)

Serves 4 to 6.




1/4 cup margarine or butter
2 pounds braising meat, sliced 1/2 inch thick (large chunks)
2 cups cold water
3 pounds carrots, peeled and diced or a mix of diced carrot and turnip
12 ounces onions, diced (about three medium)
3 pounds potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 or 2 Dutch smoked sausages (Simon de Groot or other)


Heat the fat in (what else) a Dutch oven or crock pot until brown.
Sear the meat on both sides til brown. Add water to just cover the meat
and simmer (covered) for approximately one (1) hour.
Add carrots, onions and potatoes. Season with salt and pepper.
Cover and simmer for about an hour more. Add the Dutch sausage on top
during the last 15 minutes of cooking. Remove the meat and veggies;
if there is enough liquid left, make gravy. Mash the vegetables
together and put on plates. Put meat and sausage slices on top and
serve with gravy. (Serves four to six)

Many Thanks to Brenda Sharpe for this recipe

Dan's notes: Tasty! Make sure you have a big pot.

Grilled Vegetable and Chicken Wraps

Grilled Vegetable and Chicken Wraps

1/3 cup olive oil
2 tbsp. soy sauce
1 1/2 oz. rice vinegar
1 oz lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tbsp cilantro
1 tbsp honey

2 1/2 lb chicken breast
1 tbsp cumin

1/2 each zucchini, cut in long rounds
1/2 each yellow squash
1/2 each red onion, 1/4 inch rounds
1 each bell pepper, in strips
12 flour tortillas

Reserve 1/3 marinade for serving. Marinate chicken and vegetables in remaining marinade up to 4 hours ahead of time. Season chicken with cumin and grill until just done, marking both sides. Grill vegetables until done. Slice chicken on a bias. Cut vegetables into strips. Toss with reserved marinade. Serve wrapped in a flour tortilla.

Source: Chef Christopher Sotkovsky, Pennsylvania Culinary Institute

Ginger Chicken with Almonds

Ginger Chicken with Almonds

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (1 1/2 - 2 lbs. total)
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger plus 1/4 cup julienned fresh ginger
4 teaspoons grapeseed oil or other high flash point oil such as canola oil
2 teaspoons white-wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoond kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
4 large scallions (or 6 small), trimmed
1/2 cup mango chutney, large pieces chopped
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

1 Slice chicken crosswise into œ-inch-thick pieces. Toss with ground coriander, grated ginger, 2 teaspoons oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Marinate at room temperature 15 minutes (or longer, or overnight, in the refrigerator).

2 Thinly slice white parts of scallions. Julienne green parts; set aside.

3 Stir together chutney, broth, and garlic in a small bowl.

4 Heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet (or wok) over medium-high heat. Add scallion whites and julienned ginger; stir-fry 30 seconds. Add chicken and stir-fry until thoroughly cooked, 4 to 6 minutes. Add scallion greens and chutney mixture; cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Transfer to shallow bowls with hot cooked rice (or without rice, for low-carb version). Sprinkle with toasted almond slices and serve.

Serves 4-6.

Fettuccine with walnuts, zucchini ribbons, and Pecorino Romano


2 1/2 pounds small zucchini, untrimmed
1 teaspoon fleur de sel or coarse kosher salt

2 garlic cloves, pressed
2 anchovy fillets, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
1/2 teaspoon (scant) dried crushed red pepper

1 pound fettuccine
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for serving
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted, coarsely chopped
1 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese, divided
1/2 cup (packed) thinly sliced fresh basil
1/4 cup (packed) chopped fresh mint
Fresh zucchini flowers, thinly sliced (optional)

Place 1 zucchini on work surface. Using vegetable peeler and firmly holding zucchini by stem end, shave zucchini lengthwise into long ribbons. Discard scraps. Repeat with remaining zucchini. Place ribbons (about 10 cups total) in large colander set over large bowl; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon fleur de sel. Let stand 30 minutes. Rinse zucchini under cold running water; drain well. Spread on 2 large kitchen towels; roll up in towels to absorb excess water. Set aside.

Combine garlic, anchovy fillets, and crushed red pepper in very large serving bowl. Using pestle or wooden spoon, crush mixture until paste forms.

Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid. Transfer pasta to bowl with garlic mixture. Add 1/3 cup oil and 1/4 cup reserved cooking liquid; toss. Add zucchini, walnuts, 1/2 cup cheese, basil, and mint; toss. Season with salt and pepper, adding more pasta cooking liquid if mixture is dry. Drizzle with additional oil. Sprinkle with zucchini flowers, if desired. Serve with remaining cheese.

Makes 6 servings.

Dan's note: this is great! The Pecorino Romano cheese is really good. The anchovies aren't completely necessary.

Chicken Enchiladas

Chicken Enchiladas

3 cups chopped cooked chicken
1 cup chopped onion
¼ cup margarine or butter
¼ cup unsifted flour
2 ½ cups hot water
1 tbsp chicken flavored bouillon cube or 3 cubes
1 (8oz) sour cream, at room temperature
2 cups (8 oz) shredded cheddar cheese
1 (4 oz) can chopped mild green chilies, drained
1 tsp ground cumin
10 (8 in) flour tortillas

Preheat oven to 350. In medium saucepan, cook onion in margarine until tender. Stir in flour then water and bouillon; cook and stir until thickened and bouillon dissolves. Remove from heat; stir in sour cream. In large bowl, combine 1 cup sauce, chicken, 1 cup cheese, chilies and cumin; mix well. Dip each tortilla into remaining hot sauce to soften; fill each with equal portions of chicken mixture. Roll up. Arrange in greased 13 x 9 baking dish. Spoon remaining sauce over. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 25 minutes or until bubbly. Garnish as desired. Refrigerate leftovers.
Source: Aunt Jill and Uncle Marc

Chicken Curry with Cashews


In this recipe adapted from Charmaine Solomon's Complete Asian Cookbook, ground cashews thicken the curry and give it a rich, nutty flavor. Both roasted and raw cashews work well, so use whichever you prefer.

1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
2 medium onions, finely chopped (2 cups)
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
3 tablespoons curry powder
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 (3 1/2- to 4-lb) chicken, cut into 10 serving pieces
1 (14.5-oz) can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3/4 cup cashews (1/4 lb)
3/4 cup plain whole-milk yogurt

Accompaniment: cooked basmati or jasmine rice
Garnish: chopped fresh cilantro

Heat butter in a 5- to 6-quart wide heavy pot over moderately low heat until foam subsides, then cook onions, garlic, and ginger, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add curry powder, salt, cumin, and cayenne and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Add chicken and cook, stirring to coat, 3 minutes. Add tomatoes, including juice, and cilantro and bring to a simmer, then cover and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, about 40 minutes. (If making ahead, see cooks' note, below.)

Just before serving:
Pulse cashews in a food processor or electric coffee/spice grinder until very finely ground, then add to curry along with yogurt and simmer gently, uncovered, stirring, until sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes.

Cooks' note:
Curry, without yogurt and cashews, can be made 5 days ahead and cooled completely, uncovered, then chilled, covered. Reheat over low heat before stirring in yogurt and ground cashews.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.
January 2005

Dan's note: Excellent. Really good. I used I think 3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts, it was fine.

Chicken and tasso jambalaya


Seasoning mix:
2 whole bay leaves
1 teaspoon ground red pepper (preferably cayenne)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons white pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon rubbed sage

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 pound chopped tasso (preferred) or other smoked ham (preferably Cure 81), about 2 cups
3/4 pound boneless chicken, cut into bite-size pieces, about 2 cups
1 cup chopped onions, in all
1 cup chopped celery, in all
1 cup chopped green bell peppers, in all
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 cup canned tomato sauce
1 cup peeled and chopped tomatoes
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cups uncooked rice (preferably converted)

Combine the seasoning mix ingredients in small bowl and set aside.

Melt the butter in a 2-quart saucepan over high heat. Add the tasso and cook until meat starts to brown, about 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Add chicken and continue cooking until chicken is brown, about 3 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently and scraping pan bottom well. Stir in the seasoning mix and 1/2 cup each of the onions, celery, and bell peppers and the garlic. Cook until vegetables start to get tender, about 5 to 8 minutes, stirring fairly constantly and scraping pan bottom as needed. Stir in the tomato sauce and cook about 1 minute, stirring often. Stir in the remaining 1/2 cup each of the onions, celery, and bell peppers and the tomatoes. Remove from heat. Stir in the stock and rice, mixing well. Transfer mixture to an ungreased 8x8-inch baking pan. Bake uncovered in a 350° oven until rice is tender but still a bit crunchy, about 1 hour. Remove from oven. Stir well and remove bay leaves Let sit 5 minutes before serving.

To serve, mold rice in an 8-ounce cup and place 2 cups on each serving plate for a main course or 1 cup for an appetizer.

Makes 4 main-dish or 8 appetizer servings.
Chef Paul Prudhomme's Louisiana Kitchen
April 1984
Paul Prudhomme
Morrow,William & Co

Dan's note: Don't use instant rice, it splits and gets soft again. Still very good though. Original recipe said 2 tsp red pepper- it's spicy enough with 1.

Grilled Chicken and Sun-Dried Tomato Subs

Grilled Chicken and Sun-Dried Tomato Subs
Submitted by: Dave G

"Tasty seasoned grilled chicken topped with sun-dried tomatoes and black olives. Serve with chips and green salad."
Original recipe yield: 6 sandwiches.


* 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
* 2 tablespoons olive oil
* salt and ground black pepper to taste
* 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
* 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
* 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
* 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
* 1 (8 ounce) jar sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil - drained, oil reserved
* 1 (4 ounce) can sliced black olives, drained
* 6 hoagie rolls, split lengthwise


1. Preheat an outdoor grill for medium high heat, and lightly oil grate. Lightly pound chicken to flatten. Trim excess fat from edges. Brush lightly with olive oil, then season both sides of chicken with salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano and red pepper to taste; set aside
2. In a medium bowl, combine the sun-dried tomatoes, olives, and about 2 1/2 tablespoons oil from the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste; set aside
3. Place chicken on preheated grill, and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, turning in different directions while cooking to get cross-hatch grill marks. Place cooked chicken on rolls, and top each with a heaping tablespoon of tomato mixture.

Bean Bourguignon

Bean Bourguignon

2 cans (15 oz. each) great northern beans, drained and rinsed
8 ox. Mushrooms, quartered
1 onion, chopped
1 large or 2 medium potatoes, unpeeled, cut into ½-inch chunks
2 carrots, sliced into ½ inch rounds
2 celery ribs, sliced ½ inch thick
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 cup dry red wine
6 oz. can tomato paste
1/2 cup water
Place beans, mushrooms, onions, potatoes, carrots and celery in a 4-quart
crock pot. Sprinkle with garlic, thyme, salt and pepper; add bay leaf. Stir to coat vegetables.

Pour wine over mixture in crock pot. In a small bowl, mix tomato paste and water; pour into crock pot and stir.

Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours or high 4-5 hours, or until vegetables are tender. Remove bay leaf and serve.
Source: Aunt Jill and Uncle Marc

Bahamian Peas and Rice

Authentic Bahamian Peas and Rice

"This is an authentic version of Bahamian peas and rice, I am a native of the Bahamas and this is how it was taught to me, hope you enjoy it. Serve with any prepared meat."
Original recipe yield: 8 servings.


* 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
* 1 onion, chopped
* 1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
* 8 ounces cubed cooked ham
* 1 tablespoon tomato paste
* 1 tomato, chopped
* 2 slices bacon - cooked and crumbled (optional)
* 8 ounces corned beef, chopped
* 1 (15 ounce) can pigeon peas, drained
* 2 sprigs fresh thyme
* salt and pepper to taste
* 1 (10 ounce) can coconut milk
* 6 cups water
* 1 teaspoon browning sauce
* 3 cups uncooked brown rice

1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, and fry until transparent. Stir in the green pepper, ham, tomato paste, tomato, bacon, corned beef, and pigeon peas. Season with thyme, salt, and pepper. Bring to a simmer.
2. Stir in the coconut milk, water and browning sauce, and bring to a boil. Stir in the rice. Return to a boil, then stir, cover, and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for about 45 minutes, until rice is tender. Stir occasionally.

Dan's notes: a little bland. Seasoning with cinnamon is nice. Maybe that's because all I know is that coconut milk and cinnamon go together. Where do you get pigeon peas? Also, maybe reduce the water a little bit, by a cup or so, because it was a little watery after the rice was done absorbing.

Apple cider chicken

Apple cider chicken

2 chicken breast halves
1 can cream of chicken soup
3/4 cup apple cider
3 tsp worcestershire sauce
4 tbsp onion flakes
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1 2.5oz jar sliced mushrooms, drained

Source: Mom
Bake at 350 for 1 1/2-2 hours, basting after 1 hour. Serve with rice.

Veal sambal

Veal Sambal Recipe

2-lbs. lean veal stew meat cut into 1-inch cubes
3 cups water
1 tsp. salt
2 carrots, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 carrots, peeled, sliced into thin sticks
2 stalks celery, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 stalks celery, sliced into thin sticks
1/2 large red onion, quartered
1/2 large red onion, finely chopped
8 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1 large can diced tomatoes, undrained
4 large fresh Jalapeno peppers, seeded, finely chopped
2 large fresh fingerhot peppers, seeded, finely chopped
2 thumb-size pieces of fresh ginger, peeled, finely chopped
1 tbs. lime juice
2 tbs. soy sauce
1 tbs. molasses
2 tbs. dark sesame oil
1 large mango, pureed
1 large bok choy, cut into 1/2 inch strips
1 box of your favorite Oriental noodles, or spaghetti, cooked al dente.
Garnishes: cilantro sprigs, chopped peanuts, mango slices, tangerine

In a 4-quart pan, place the veal, water, salt, 4 cloves garlic, and large pieces of the celery, carrot, and onion. Bring to boil and simmer covered for 1 hour. Using a slotted spoon, remove the meat and chill until needed.

Strain the broth, discard the veggies, and wash the pan. Return the broth to the pan and reduce the volume to one cup.

Cook the pasta, drain, and add one tablespoon sesame oil to the noodles and toss to coat. Return noodles to the pot and cover until needed.

In the same 4-quart pan with the broth, add all of the remaining ingredients except the veal, sesame oil, mango, bok choy, and noodles. Stir well and adjust seasoning to your taste. Cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients except the noodles and toss the bok choy in the hot sauce until it is just wilted. Cover, and heat for a few minutes until the meat and sauce are hot.

Add the noodles to a large pasta serving bowl. Add the finished stew to the pasta and toss well. If desired, garnish with any or all of the above selections. Serves 4-6. Enjoy!

A stew featuring a fusion of Thai and Indonesian flavors. The very spicy Indonesian sambal sauce is tempered by a Thai tomato-mango base.

Dan's note: good. A little watery, but not really. If you just add the noodles (I used penne) to the broth, it just makes a big soup. But yeah, all the flavors work together well. And I didn't even have any sesame oil or molasses!

Tahu dan Tempe Bumbu Rujak

Tahu dan Tempe Bumbu Rujak
(Indonesian tofu & tempeh in spicy coconut sauce)

Yield: 4-6 servings
6-7 shallots, chopped
4-5 cloves garlic, crushed
3-5 tbsp Sambal oelek
5-6 candlenuts or almonds
1 tbsp tamarind pulp
1 tsp turmeric powder

2-3 tbsp oil
3 stalks lemongrass, white part only, crushed with a mallet or knife
4-6 Kaffir lime leaves
1" piece Galangal, sliced into thin discs
1 lb tempeh, cubed
1 lb tofu, firm, cubed
2 cups coconut milk
2 tbsp sugar
salt, to taste

Basic Steps: Puree ? Sauté ? Simmer

1. Place the shallots, garlic, sambal oelek, nuts, tamarind and turmeric into a blender or food processor and puree. Add a little water if necessary to bring the ingredients together.
2. Heat the oil in a large saucepan or wok over medium high flame. Add the shallot puree and sauté till fragrant, 3-5 minutes. Add the crushed lemongrass and lime leaves and sauté 1-2 minutes more.
3. Add the tempeh, tofu and coconut milk. Season with sugar and salt, reduce heat and simmer until coconut milk has thickened, 15-20 minutes. Serve with rice.


* The cubed tofu can be deep-fried first if you like. Pre-fried tofu cubes can be found at many Asian markets.
* One medium-sized white onion can be substituted for the shallots.
* Use all tofu or all tempeh if you prefer.
* Ayam Bumbu Rujak: Use one chicken, about 2 1/2 lbs and cut into serving pieces, in place of the tofu and tempeh. The chicken can be browned first in hot oil if you like.
* Telur Bumbu Rujak: Use 6 or 7 hard-boiled eggs in place of the tofu and tempeh.


* This simple vegetarian dish uses tempeh, a fermented soybean cake, that is popular in Indonesian cuisine.
* The lemongrass, lime leaves and galangal are for seasoning and are not meant to be eaten. They can be removed before serving if you like.

Dan's notes: I forgot the galangal. The lemongrass and lime leaves made it very lemoney, and that wasn't so good; I'd cut down the lemongrass.
It is good with one stalk of lemongrass and only a couple lime leaves, and all tofu, no tempeh.


Cucumber and Egg Salad



This refreshing salad is commonly served at Minangkabau wedding ceremonies in Indonesia. Hard-to-find ingredients can be found at your local Asian market.

5 pickling cucumbers, peeled, trimmed, and
thinly sliced
1 1/2 tsp. salt
Peanut oil
2 medium waxy potatoes, peeled and thinly
4 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
2 tsp. rice vinegar
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. sugar
2 hard-cooked eggs, peeled, whites and yolks
separated, both sliced
1 oz. raw shrimp chips, fried (Krispy Kritters)
1/2 oz. raw melinjo nut chips, fried (Krispy Kritters)

1. Toss cucumbers and 1 tsp. of the salt in a colander and set aside to drain for 1 hour. Meanwhile, pour oil into a deep skillet to a depth of 1" and heat over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Working in 2 batches, fry potatoes, stirring often, until golden and crisp, about 3 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Fry shallots in same oil, stirring often, until deep golden and crisp, 2-3 minutes. Drain on paper towels.

2. Put vinegar, pepper, sugar, and the remaining 1/2 tsp. salt into a medium bowl. Squeeze out excess water from cucumbers, add to bowl, and toss well. Scatter egg whites over cucumbers, then scatter yolks, then potatoes, then shallots on top. Set salad aside at room temperature for 1 hour. Garnish each serving with fried shrimp and melinjo nut chips and serve with Steamed White Rice, if you like.
First published in Saveur, March 2002

Dan's notes: nice. Buy raw shrimp chips and fry them, it's awesome, they puff up super-fast. This got greasy, but just because I didn't really know how to fry the potatoes.

Sayur Lodeh

Sayur Lodeh
(Indonesian vegetables in coconut curry)

Yield: 4-6 servings
3 Tbsp oil
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp galangal or fresh ginger, minced
1-3 chili peppers, sliced
1 piece lemongrass, white part of stalk only, minced
1 tsp coriander seed, ground
1/2 tsp turmeric

Coconut milk 2 cups

1 potato, peeled, diced
1 carrot, peeled, sliced into rounds
1 cup green beans
1 onion thinly sliced

1 cup chinese or Napa cabbage, chopped
2-3 scallions, chopped in 1" pieces
Salt & pepper, to taste

Basic Steps: Stir Fry ? Boil ? Simmer ? Season

1. Heat oil in a large saucepan or wok over medium flame. Stir fry first set of ingredients 2-3 minutes.
2. Add coconut milk and bring to a boil.
3. Add potatoes, carrots, green beans and onions. Lower heat and cover. Simmer till potatoes are almost cooked through, about 10-12 minutes.
4. Remove cover and add cabbage, scallions and salt and pepper. Simmer just till cabbage is tender, about 2-3 minutes. Adjust seasoning and serve.


* You can substitute other vegetables if you like, just add the sturdier, longer cooking vegetables first and the more delicate vegetables in the second simmering. This prevents over or undercooking.
* Add some cubed tofu or some shrimp with the cabbage and scallions if you like.


* This dish is also popular in Malaysia.

Dan's notes: All right, but kind of watery and bland. Might help to add some more flavorings (like cloves/bay leaf). Can't simmer longer, though, because the vegetables will get all soft.