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Archive for the ‘side dish’ Category

I should have been an Italian Grandmother. 

I’m not sure how those bow ties will cook up but Jada is beside herself with excitement over the prospect of taking them to school in her picnic lunch tomorrow. This week I tried using brown rice flour in my noodles and loved it. Previously when I made 100% whole wheat noodles they were gritty. We ate them but I can’t say we loved them unless they were loaded with sauce. These I enjoy, though. Much smoother!And made with sprouted flour they benefit you, too, unlike boxed pasta products. Now I must return to the kitchen and clean up my mess. And figure out what to go with my noodles for supper. Whole Grain Noodles

2 2/3 cups  sprouted whole wheat bread flour

1 cup sprouted brown rice flour

3 eggs

1 t salt

3/4 cup whey or water

Mix everything and knead for five minutes to make a smooth dough. Cover and let rest for at least 20 minutes. This helps the gluten to relax. 

Divide into two balls and roll each one out to about a 24 inch circle, using flour as needed to prevent sticking. Size will depend on how thick you want your noodles. Let rest again and then cut into desired shape. I use a pizza cutter. 

Cook in boiling salted water and serve immediately. 

If you want to dry the noodles, generously flour and lay out on a cookie sheet to air dry for a few days. If it will be a while til we eat them, I freeze them and then drop straight from the freezer into boiling water. 

Yield: 1 3/4 pounds fresh pasta

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So I pressure canned some dried beans the other day. I’ve never done that before. Pressure canned, yes. But not dried beans. 

 I did it in hopes of actually getting my chickpeas totally soft because I don’t like eating gritty hummus.  

 Well, it worked. And I made too much hummus. 
 So I need to find ways to use it up. Not everyone in the family loves the stuff. 

 Chapatis were yesterday’s method and how fun! If you have several small children and the same amount of rolling pins, they will happily do most of the work for you. In fact, they had so much fun that I didn’t have the heart to tell them to stop rolling. Chapatis are supposed to be fairly thick. Oh well. Still yummy!  

Chapatis

1 cup whole wheat flour

1 cup all purpose flour

1 t melted lard or butter 

Pinch salt

1/2 – 3/4 cup water

Butter

Mix flours, fat, and salt. Slowly add water and stir until a soft dough forms. Knead a few minutes to bring the dough together and then cover and let sit 30-60 minutes. 

Divide dough into 10 pieces. Roll each one into 4″ circle. Fry on a hot, ungreased skillet until bubbly and just a bit golden brown, flipping and frying the other side, too. Place in a damp towel after brushing one side with a bit of softened butter. Helps to keep them soft and pliable. 

Serve traditionally with Indian food or with hummus and various toppings, rolled up taco style.

Yield: 10

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I guess I’ve been craving beans? Weird.  

 These are the simplest and most flavorful beans I’ve ever made. It was a quick lunch for Bennet and I. I’m not sure he enjoyed them but he did eat his bowlful without complaint before digging into his sugar cookie. 

I particularly loved the oregano. I never would have thought to use it, opting typically to go with cumin in such places.

They might look boring in the bowl but your tastebuds might be surprised by everything going on. Give them a try…if you don’t like them just turn them into soup!

 Cuban Black Beans

Adapted from Extending the Table

1/2 cup chopped bell pepper (frozen is fine)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 T lard or bacon fat

4 cups cooked black beans 

1/2 t oregano

1/2 t salt (if beans are unsalted) 

3 T apple cider vinegar 

Heat fat in skillet. Add pepper and sauté a few minutes. Add garlic and cook a bit more. Throw in everything else and simmer with the lid closed for about 10-15 minutes, adding a bit of water if necessary to keep them from sticking. Serve immediately with butter bread (or rice, if you are feeling authentic). 

Served: 3-4 for a light lunch. 

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  I’m not in my normal kitchen today. The pantry is a bit sparse but don’t worry, we didn’t starve.  I brought along the dry ingredients, premixed, for simple muffins to go with the jar of soup I also toted with us.   The muffins were delightfully simple and satisfying.   The type of fat you use here will really change the end flavor. I used olive oil and loved the slightly earthy undertone it brought. Butter would be delicious, too, of course. Bacon fat or lard could be nice if you want a meaty flavor.  

 And these guys could be the base for a myriad of add-ins. Fruit, veg, protein, take your pick…whatever is floating around in your fridge or pantry! 

 Simple Muffins

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour

1 cup all purpose flour

2 T sugar

1 T baking powder

1 egg 

1 cup milk

1/4 cup fat, melted if necessary 

1/4-1/2 t salt (depending if fat is salted)

In a large bowl, mix flours, sugar, and baking powder. 

In a small bowl, whisk the egg, milk, fat, and salt until combined. Add to dry ingredients and only mix until barely combined, no more. A few lumps are fine. 

Divide between 12 greased and floured muffin cups. Bake at 400F for 12-15 mins or until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. 

Enjoy warm with toppings of choice. 

Yield: 12 regular muffins

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I meant for this to travel with us to the cabin for the next two days but it didn’t make it there. When I plated it for the photo, I had to take a bite. And then I ate the whole pile. 

If it WOULD have made it to Christmas, it would have been the perfect antidote to all that sugar I know I’ll consume. 

  
Kale Salad

Told to me by my mom 

Kale (4 c finely chopped ended up giving me a pint of salad)

Salt

Lemon juice 

Sliced almonds 

Craisins

Raisins

Grated sharp cheddar (or crumbled feta)

Honey

Olive oil

Balsamic vinegar

Black pepper

Remove the stems from the kale as well as the larger veins. Chop it very fine and place in a big bowl. Sprinkle with salt and a sprinkling of lemon juice.  Then comes the fun part. Get your hands in there and smash that kale all up. Really give it a good massage. You want it all to turn wet and dark green. 

Next toast your almonds. Use a skillet on the stove top or a pan in the oven. Whatever floats your boat. Than throw the hot nuts on top of the kale and give it a stir. Add remaining ingredients, but don’t overdue it on the balsamic. It’s a background flavor. And you don’t need much oil. Give it a stir and eat immediately or refrigerate up to a day or two. 

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I thought I didn’t like mashed potato pancakes. Turns out I was doing it wrong. The egg in the batter is important. And by all means, please fry them in lard. Mmmmmm.   

Mashed Potato Pancakes

2-3 cups leftover mashed potatoes

1 large egg

Handful of grated cheese

Salt/pepper

Flour (whole wheat, white, or a combo)

Mix everything together, using enough flour to make a thick batter. It will depend how much milk you used in your mashed potatoes. Fry in 1/8-1/4 inch hot lard. Be sure to let them brown well on both sides. Don’t mess with them prematurely or you’ll break the seal of good taste! Serve hot with sour cream or ketchup. 

Yield: about a dozen 3-inch cakes

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At this year’s soirée, my aunt served us the most wonderful soup. It was smooth and warm, flavors perfectly balanced. I don’t think my version beats hers, but this is what I came up with using what I already had on hand.  I really wished for more cilantro but the tiny volunteers in the garden only gave me six little leaves. Parsley had to do. 

 Only one child gagged, so I consider that a win. Baby even begged for more spoonfuls!  

 Winter Squash Soup with Corn Relish

Adapted from here

2 T olive oil

1/2 of a small onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup frozen corn, thawed

1 t minced cilantro 

4 cups cooked butternut squash 

1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk

2-3 cups water 

1 1/2 t salt

Pinch red pepper flakes 

Corn relish, below

Heat oil in pot. Add onion and sauté for two minutes. Add garlic and stir and sauté another minute or so. Add remaining ingredients, except for corn relish, and cook until corn is soft. Purée with stick blender until smooth, adding more water if you want a thinner soup. Serve warm with corn relish sprinkled on top.

Serves: 4-6

Corn Relish

1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed

1 T minced parsley

1 T lime juice

1 T olive oil 

1/4 t salt

Dash black pepper 

Mix all together and serve with soup. 

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