Archive for category Dylan Report

Cincinnati-Style Vegetable Chili

This is a vegetarian version of my Cincinnati-Style Chili.  (Vegan, actually, if you don’t put cheese on top.)  You can make it fat-free by omitting the olive oil, but you won’t get the flavor benefits of the fat-soluble elements in the chili powder or cumin.  This is the first time I have ever made it in a slow-cooker, and it was quite successful!  The beef version of this chili really does need high heat in the beginning to brown the meat and develop a fond, but the veggies did quite well simply simmering on low for about 8 hours while I went about my day.  The other change I made on this round was to use a can of crushed tomatoes instead of diced, which I think was a good change.

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Turkey Meatballs; Roast Fennel; Cauliflower Puree; Orzo

I think the title of this one may be too much for Twitter.  We shall see!  It looks like a lot, but the only part that was any real work was the meatballs (the cauliflower I had in the fridge already).  dscn3814 Read the rest of this entry »

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Braised Spare Ribs; White Bean & Collard Greens Gratin

dscn3806The ribs were from the farmer’s market – there’s a pig guy I usually buy bacon from, but he was out by the time I got there so I went for some ribs instead.  The gratin is a WF Cookbook recipe, with collard greens standing in for kale because my supermarket is small and local and not always well stocked.

For the ribs, I simply rubbed them down with salt, pepper, and Penzey’s Northwood’s Seasoning and tossed them into the slow cooker with 1 can chopped green chiles, 1 sliced onion, and 2 cubes frozen spicy chicken stock (leftover from the chili from last Monday).  I set it to low and let it braise for 8 hours, though it probably would have been ready after 6.  It was literally falling off the bone and melt-in-your-mouth tender.  The onions and chiles disappeared into a rich silky sauce and the whole thing was pretty much delicious. Read the rest of this entry »

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Turkey Picadillo Empanadas

This was more time-consuming than I expected (I didn’t mentally account for the extra 20 minutes needed to bake the empanadas – oops!) but the results were really good.  I really wish FreshDirect sold regular ground turkey instead of just the all-white-meat version – fat free ground meat is pretty much the definition of useless.  (When I buy my KitchenAid meat grinder attachment, I can buy boneless skinless thighs and grind my own.  In the meantime, I just use a little more veg oil in the initial saute.)

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Mac & Cheese

The original recipe title was “spicy mac & cheese” but since I was making this for a 20-month old I left out the cayenne and the jalapenos.  Still very tasty though!  I also added some roasted veggies because I like my mac & cheese with roasted veggies.  I’m still going to count it as having made this from the book because I followed the recipe’s directions regarding the types and proportion of cheeses.  Also the cumin and coriander in the sauce, which was a nice touch that I think I’ll keep. Read the rest of this entry »

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Havana Black Beans / Cilantro Lime Rice

All recipes for cilantro-lime rice follow the same basic formula, and this one does not stray from the path.

Heat a few tbsp olive oil in a saucepan with a tight fitting lid.  Add some minced garlic, lime zest & lime juice, salt.  Add rice (I made 1.5 cups), saute until lightly browned and nutty.  Add water (twice as much water as rice), cover and let steam 30 minutes.  Stir in minced cilantro and scallions just before serving.  (Most recipes, including this one, also call for chopped spinach.  I accidentally turned all the spinach in my fridge into creamed spinach two nights ago, and so had none left for this rice.  Oops!) Read the rest of this entry »

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Chicken Toscana / Creamed Spinach

I’ll start with the creamed spinach, since I made that one first.  This is a very standard recipe with the very welcome additions of leeks and arugula. I used fresh baby spinach, but frozen would work almost as well.

In a saucepan or skillet with high sides, heat 1 tbsp each of olive oil and butter.  Add 1 chopped cleaned leek and saute until softened.  (The recipe says not to let it brown, but I really wouldn’t worry about it too much.  A slightly caramelized leek is no bad thing.) Add 10 oz (1 bag) fresh chopped spinach and 2-4 cloves chopped or pressed garlic.  Saute until wilted.  Add 1 tbsp flour, stir to evenly combine.  Add (slowly) 1/2 cup milk or cream, stirring constantly.  Continue to cook over med-low heat until slightly thickened.  Add arugula and season with salt and pepper.

It’s probably worth mentioning that the original recipe called for a full cup of cream, but I stopped after 1/2 because it looked plenty creamy already, and I didn’t want to water it down.

The chicken was equally easy and also delicious.  The key is the herb marinade that it sits in overnight – once those flavors have worked their way in, there’s almost nothing left to do but heat and eat. Read the rest of this entry »

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Lentil, Sausage, and Rice Soup

Short because I’m three posts behind (sorry!) – this was delicious.  It was rich and hearty but not heavy or greasy.  Didn’t taste nearly as healthy as it was, what with the spinach and the lentils and the brown rice. Read the rest of this entry »

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Shepard's Pie

Another yummy success.  I made a few changes – the original recipe calls for tempeh but says “you can substitute beef” in the notes.  I split the difference and used ground turkey.  The recipe also specifies a cornstarch slurry as a thickener, and since I really dislike the texture cornstarch gives to gravies, I used flour instead, adding it after the first veggie saute like a roux.  And to the sweet potato topping, I added barley malt syrup (which I had on hand) instead of brown rice syrup (which I did not). Read the rest of this entry »

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Pepperoni Pan Pizza

I promise the next entry will be back to business as usual, cooking my way through the Whole Foods Market Cookbook.  But yesterday was the inauguration of President Barack Obama (HELL YEAH!) so I thought it was only fitting that I make a Chicago-style pizza in his honor.  This is the Pepperoni Pan Pizza recipe from America’s Test Kitchen and is as close an approximation to real deep dish pizza at home as any I’ve ever had.   The recipe as written takes about 90 minutes start to finish, but you can make it an easy weeknight dish by making the dough the night  before and letting it rise overnight in the fridge. Read the rest of this entry »

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