Archive for December, 2008

Moroccan Roast Seafood with Vegetables

dscn3636This was a BIG hit.  For the Israeli couscous, I simply sauteed a little curry powder, salt, and garlic in EVOO, then added the couscous and tossed to cover.  Then addded water, covered, and cooked like basmati rice (15 minutes on the heat, 15 minutes off, never lift the cover).

The seafood and veggies were marinated for about 30 minutes (separately) in a mixture of EVOO, lemon juice, garlic, curry powder, cinnamon, turmeric, salt, pepper, and a little cayenne on the seafood only.  The book said to refrigerate during this time.  I didn’t bother.

The seafod itself was a mixture of tilapia and sea scallops.  The recipe calls for mahi mahi and shrimp, but I think almost any combination of mild white fish and shellfish would work.  I’d love to have this with something like halibut and lobster.  Mmmmm, lobster.  The veggies are just red bell peppers and red onion – again, you could use almost any combination.

While everything is marinading, preheat the oven to 450F.  Cook the veggies for about 25 minutes and the seafood for about 10 (in separate pans).  Serve over couscous.  Yum!

Dylan Report: BIG thumbs up!!  Since I added cayenne to the seafood, I only served him couscous and veggies, and also threw in a few raisins for good measure.  He ate it all up with his spoon and then begged for more bites off of Mommy and Daddy’s plates.  I call that a win.  Good thing there’s extra couscous left – he can have it tomorrow for breakfast.



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Whole Wheat Linguine with Broccoli

This is fairly similar to the kind of pasta dishes I make all the time so I’m not going to bother transcribing the recipe – heat EVOO in a skillet, add some kind of leafy green (broccoli in this case) + garlic/red pepper flakes/pine nuts and serve over whatever kind of pasta is on hand.  The wrinkle in the WF recipe, and one I really like, is the addition of a splash of soy sauce and lemon juice at the end just before you toss everything together.  I was a little dubious at first, but it really complements the flavor of the pine nuts.

Pasta DoughThe other wrinkle I added was that I made the whole wheat linguine myself, and it was NUMMY.  I tried the recipe that came with the pasta maker attachment and it was like trying to knead a brick.  So I threw out that batch and used Marcella Hazan as a guideline instead.  I also used half white and half wheat flour instead of 100% whole wheat.  It came out much better the second time.

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Wok-Sautéed Mizuna w/ Minced Chicken

Or, more accurate to what I actually made, chicken stir-fry with mustard greens.  (Local supermarket didn’t have mizuna.)

Whisk together 1 egg white with 1 tsp soy sauce and 4 cloves pressed garlic.  Toss with 2 chicken breasts cut into very small pieces.  Marinate 1 hour in fridge.

Heat oil in wok over high heat.  Add chicken and stir-fry until browned.  (In batches if your wok is small.)  Remove from pan.

Greens tossedHeat more oil and add 2 chopped carrots, 1/2 chopped onion, 1 can bamboo shoot strips (supermarket also did not have water chestnuts).  Saute 2 minutes.  Add 1 tsp soy sauce, 1/2 tsp sriracha (or other garlic-chili paste), juice of 1/2 a lime.  Stir-fry another minute.

Return chicken to pan along with 2 bunches of mustard greens, torn into pieces.  Toss with tongs until greens have wilted.

Serve over basmati rice.dscn3624

Dylan Report: Mild thumbs up.  I removed some chicken w/ onions, carrots and bamboo shoots for him before I added the sriracha and mustard greens.  Since we just got home from a week-long vacation, he was both exhausted and completely wired and not much in the mood to try a new dish, even if it was basically just chicken and rice.  He seemed to like the bamboo shoots and kept asking for pieces of my chicken by saying “spicy?”  So maybe I should have given him some of the hot sauce version!  He was very willing to try the mustard greens but turned them down with a very polite “no” as he took the leaf out of his mouth and handed it to me.


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Dylan Report: Chicken With Dumplings

Dylan Report The chicken & dumplings were a distinct toddler success!  It helps that he already likes everything that went into this – chicken, sausage, sweet potatoes, carrots.  The dumplings were new, but they’re basically little lumps of bread flavored with parmesan cheese, so kind of a no-brainer.

The mysterious object in his left hand is a teething ring out of the freezer that I used to cool down his soup (ice cubes would just make it watery).  As I type this, he is happily slurping away and chanting “soupy-soupy souuuuuuu!” along with his Dad in the other room.

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Chicken with Dumplings

Oddly enough, this is the first “chicken and dumplings” I’ve ever made where the dumplings weren’t matzoh balls. And it turns out I’m better with matzoh than flour – these were a little dense for my taste.

For the broth, I cut the breast and thigh meat away from a 5-lb chicken and put the remaining carcass (without skin) into the slow-cooker with a few carrots, 2 celery stalks, 1 onion, and a bit of salt. Filled with water and left it on low all day. When I got home, I scooped out the bones and veggies with a spider and added back the meat to simmer for about 30 minutes. Read the rest of this entry »

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Red-Chili-Rubbed Salmon

The original recipe is for an entire side of salmon to serve a crowd – I made it with 2 fillets to serve 2. I also skipped soaking dried chiles and used Thai red chili paste instead (because the overall flavor profile struck me as being Thai-ish and I had chili paste on hand already).

Preheat the oven to 350.

In a mini-prep, whiz together a lump of Thai red chili paste, a few tablespoons of brown sugar, juice from 1 lime, 2 big garlic cloves, and salt until a puree/paste forms.

Spread puree over salmon fillets in pan.  Lay thin lime slices on top.  Bake 20 minutes or until salmon is just cooked through.

Red-Chili-Rubbed Salmon

This wasn’t great, but I blame the quality of the salmon more than the recipe.  I used frozen salmon fillets from Whole Foods to avoid having to go to the fish store after work today, but in the future I’ll make time.  The frozen salmon dried out in the oven much faster than fresh would have, and the resulting texture was dry and a little mealy.  The glaze was delicious and I would definitely give this another try.

I served it with a baby spinach salad – dressing was half the juice from a navel orange, a splash of champagne vinegar, dijon mustard, EVOO, salt and pepper.  Topped it with toasted pine nuts and crumbled blue cheese.  (My salad dressing jar?  An old Stage 2 baby food jar.  It is the absolute *perfect* size.)



Algerian Eggplant Salad

I made several changes to this along the way – some intentional, some not.

Slice 2 medium eggplants into 1/2-inch thick slices. Seed and quarter 2 green peppers. Slice and seed 1 jalapeno.

Toss veggies with olive oil, turmeric, cumin, crushed red chiles, LOTS of pressed garlic, and a bunch of chopped cilantro. And salt. Let marinade 30 minutes while you preheat the broiler.

Broil about 5 minutes, or until nice and charred (but not burnt). Turn oven down to 450 and put in 2 sandwich-size parbaked frozen baguettes.

Chop “grilled” veggies into bits. Add about 8 campari or 6 plum tomatoes, quartered, and another big handful of fresh cilantro. Salt and pepper to taste.

Algerian Eggplant Salad

Scoop out the baguettes and spread with Sabra Greek Olive Hummus on both sides. Fill with salad. YUM.

Eggplant Salad Sandwich


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Roasted Corn Poblano Chowder

It’s late and I’m exhausted, so this will be a short one.

Liked this, didn’t love it. Really should be called “Corn Chowder With Roasted Poblanos” since there was no roasting of corn. Also, you know what vegetarian recipes are all missing? BACON. There’s a meaty, salty undertone I expect from chowder that this was completely missing. Still, the flavors that were there were all good.

I think if I make this again, I’ll add chorizo in the beginning and use the rendered fat for the roux instead of butter.Roasted Corn and Poblano Chowder


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The Dylan Report

Dylan is my 18-month old son, and because his dinnertime is currently much earlier than the dinnertime of the adults in the household, he generally eats leftovers from the night before.  (Unless it’s something that doesn’t generate leftovers, or is really spicy, or requires molars.)  This is the first of many chances he will have to review the recipes from this project. Read the rest of this entry »

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Savory Tomato Pesto Polenta, Tuscan Vegetable Saute

Veggies veggies everywhere!


Basil Pesto

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