March 06, 2012
I have a new blog! This is what I've been so excited to tell you all about! I will no longer be posting here, but I would love if you continued to follow me and all my cooking adventures on Good Things Grow! You know you want the recipe for that ice cream sandwich cookie up there too!
February 28, 2012
All weekend I was thinking about these brussels sprouts and how I would savor them because I knew this would probably be the last bunch until next season. I thought a light salad, something that would ease its way into spring with a crisp freshness and touch of brightness, would be a good option. Something raw to enter a soon-to-be season of young fresh veggies, but still hanging onto the citrus of winter.
shop. I'm not usually a pro thirty minute meal or less kinda person, but I can appreciate a quick whole food recipe when I need one, especially when I can't stand to eat another sandwich or plate of leftovers.
I had picked up a bag of whole wheat Israeli couscous out of curiosity. I'd never cooked with this little bead shaped grain before and the fact that I saw it would take less than 15 minutes to cook, might also be why it made its way into my cart that day. I added it to the shredded brussels sprouts for some extra heft. My favorite part of this salad is when you get a sweet squirt of tangerine juice when taking a bite, also the unexpected but so delicious taste of basil.
This was another recipe that started out as something from The Food Matters Project, as you can see I'm not very good at following recipes, but at least I still used brussels sprouts! This weeks pick was by Marcia and to view a complete list of others who participated you can visit the website.
Shredded Brussels Sprout & Tangerine Salad / serves 4
I really think any grain (quinoa, millet, barley, farro) would work here in place of the couscous. You can segment the tangerines if you like too, I kept it simple and didn't bother.
1/2 cup dry whole wheat Israeli couscous or 1 cup other cooked grain of choice
1/2 lb. brussels sprouts
1/4 of a red onion, thinly sliced
handful of fresh basil, chiffonade (about 1/4 cup)
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
a couple big pinches salt, plus more to taste
1/4 cup toasted walnuts
Bring a small saucepan filled with 1 cup water to a boil. Stir in couscous and cook at a simmer for 8 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool slightly.
Meanwhile, using a mandolin or sharp knife, slice the brussels sprouts as thinly as you can and place them in a large mixing bowl. Add in the red onion, basil, and couscous and give everything a good toss.
In a small bowl whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, garlic, and salt. Pour over the brussels sprout mixture and toss until everything is thoroughly dressed, seasoning with salt to taste. Add in the tangerines, then just before serving, top with walnuts.
February 20, 2012
When it comes to creating meals in the kitchen, my inspiration works in somewhat the same way, but with a unique twist. Often I'll find a single carrot or that last bit of quinoa at the back of the cupboard, anything that needs to be used up, and a meal idea starts to form. Maybe I'll pull out a cookbook or two, maybe I remember something my mom or grandma used to cook, or something I once ate in a restaurant. Sometimes I just wing it and see what I end up with.
The Food Matters Cookbook, I already had a different idea starting to form based on what I had in the fridge. A half empty jar of roasted red peppers from a few nights before, tofu, almonds, and a big bunch of cilantro I had just purchased. I'm so use to using what I have on hand, that I didn't want to head back out into the rain for another grocery run, so those ingredients would have to do.
Soon I had almonds in the food processor grinding down into a course meal to coat the tofu in. Then the last bit of roasted peppers went into the processor along with the cilantro, garlic, a bit of olive oil, and a pinch of salt. The result was not pesto, but a really lovely salsa-esque sauce. I cooked up some black rice, made some of my favorite garlicky mixed greens and served the tofu with the red pepper sauce drizzled over the top. Even though it was way off from the original recipe, it was still a really amazing outcome. One I don't think would have happened without that little seed of inspiration, that all started with The Food Matters Project. It's really fascinating seeing what others get from looking at the same basic recipe idea and how they interpret it. So... what inspires you?
Almond Crusted Tofu with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce / serves 2
I used a jar of roasted red peppers in water, but you can also use fresh red bell peppers and roast them yourself. I served the tofu over black rice with a side of my favorite garlicky greens.
for the sauce
6 oz. jar roasted red peppers in water, drained
2 garlic cloves
big handful fresh cilantro, about a 1/4 cup packed
1 tablespoon olive oil
pinch of sea salt
for the tofu
6-8 oz. extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
1/2 cup raw almonds
couple pinches sea salt
couple pinches ground black pepper
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
For the sauce, place all the ingredients in a small food processor and blend until smooth, set aside.
Place the almonds in a food processor and blend until they become a coarse almond meal. Dump out into a shallow bowl and stir in the salt and black pepper.
Cut the the tofu in half lengthwise and widthwise, then diagonally (see images). Place a tofu triangle in the almond mixture and coat on all sides, repeat with each slice. Heat a skillet (I used cast iron) over medium-high heat. Pour in enough oil just to coat the bottom of the pan. Once the oil is hot, carefully place the tofu slices into the pan. Cook for 2 minutes or until golden brown without moving, then flip and cook for another 2 minutes. Plate the tofu slices and pour the roasted red pepper sauce over the top, serve immediately.
February 17, 2012
Get the recipe at Whole Living.
February 14, 2012
So why am I posting a popcorn recipe you may wonder? Well, I've been getting really into making my own spice blends lately and thought this one I whipped up would fun to share because it's so versatile and can be used on things other than popcorn too. Also, I've joined in on The Food Matters Project put on by Kate of Cookie+Kate and Sarah from 20 Something Cupcakes and seasoned popcorn was the recipe Kate choose for this week. You can read more about the project on their about page and anyone can join in or follow along as we cook our way through The Food Matters Cookbook by Mark Bittman.
Now back to the popcorn. We have never owned a microwave and we are totally fine with that because even if we did own one, we would never use it. This means that popcorn has always been cooked right on the stove top in a hot, lidded pot with a bit of oil. Seeing that I don't really eat popcorn, Scott has always been the popcorn popper and he's pretty darn good at it. He does it all without measuring and manages to never burn it. So while he made the popcorn I got the spice blend ready and before we(he) knew it, it was snack time.
Lemon-Herb Seasoned Popcorn
For the full recipe please visit Cookie+Kate and to view all recipes visit The Food Matters Project
The seasoning salt is the perfect thing to sprinkle over roasted veggies, but if you mix it with a little olive oil and a clove of minced garlic it becomes a great dipping sauce for bread, add in a bit of lemon juice and it makes a great spiced up salad dressing. This is why I'm loving spice blends so much, because you can spin off it so many new directions.
lemon-herb seasoning salt
1/4 cup sea salt
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
3 teaspoons dried rosemary
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon cane sugar
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
2-3 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
1/2 cup popping corn
2 tablespoons melted butter or olive oil for serving, optional
lemon-herb seasoning salt, to taste
Combine all the ingredients for the seasoning salt in a small bowl or container. Store tightly covered for approximately 2-3 months. Makes about 1/3 cup.
Heat the oil, plus 2-3 corn kernels, in a large heavy pot with a lid over medium heat. Listen for the kernels to pop, then add in the rest and cover. While covered hold the pot over the heat and shake in a circular motion to let the oil coat the kernels. Set it back over the heat, but only for about 20 seconds so all the kernels have a chance to heat up. Then when they start popping hold the lid on tight and shake over the heat again until you hear the last of the kernels pop, about 5 minutes.
Place the popped popcorn in a serving bowl. If using butter or oil, melt it in the same pot you used to cook the popcorn. Pour over the popcorn and sprinkle with desired amount of the seasoning salt. Serve immediately.