Thursday, March 28, 2013

Mexican Vegetable Stew

The weather has continued to be cool and I had lots of produce in the frig. So, this seemed like a delicious to both warm up and use the veggies. This stew has so much flavor it's crazy. You won't be disappointed if you decide to make this and remember you can sub out the veggies you have on hand.
  • 2 onions, peeled and sliced
  • 1 sweet red pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 sweet green pepper, cut into strips
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups no-chicken chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or to taste)
  • 2 small red potatoes, diced
  • 1 small/medium sweet potato, diced
  • 2 cups fresh green beans, sliced into 1" pieces
  • 2 zucchini, sliced
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice (1 lime)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro or flat leaf parsley

Combine the onion, red and green peppers, garlic and broth and bring to a boil in a large pot. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes. 

Add the spices, red potatoes and sweet potato, cover and simmer 10 minutes more, adding more broth or water if needed. 

Add the green beans, cook 5 minutes more. 

Add the zucchini, black beans, corn and lime juice. Reduce the heat and simmer 5 minutes, or until all the vegetables are tender. 

Garnish with cilantro or parsley. 

Serves 4 to 6.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Chicken Tortilla Soup

This soup is so easy, just throw it all in the crockpot and turn it on high for 3-4 hours or low for 7-8. Boom! Dinner is ready. It's so easy I forgot to take a pic of it IN the crockpot. Trust me, easy peasy. I was cleaning out the cabinet and didn't have corn tortillas so I used tostada chips crumbled up in place of the "called for" corn tortillas.
  • 1 pound package Chicken-Style Seitan
  • 1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 can (10 oz) Rotel
  • 1 can (10 oz) enchilada sauce
  • 1 medium onion,chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups water
  • 14.5 ounces no-chicken chicken broth
  • 1 heaping teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 (10 oz) package frozen whole kernel corn
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
  • 7 corn tortillas (I didn't have any so I used tostidos chips)
  • vegetable oil (didn't use see item above)
  • Garnish: sour cream, shredded cheese, tortilla strips, etc.

Put all ingredients in the slow cooker, except for the tortillas and oil (again I used crushed chips on top instead.) Cook on high 3-4 hours or low 7-8 hours.

If you are using tortillas then heat oven to 400, lightly brush tortillas with oil, cut into strips, toss onto baking sheet. Bake 10-15 minutes.

Ladle soup into bowls and serve with crushed chips (or tortilla strips), shredded cheese and sour cream.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Chocolate Cake

It's been a rainy, slightly cool day so I've been cleaning, doing laundry and of course cooking. I happened across this 6-minute Chocolate Cake in the Moosewood Cooks at Home cookbook. Well it took a few more than 6 minutes to whip it up, maybe 10. It is delicious and you only have 1 bowl to clean and a few measuring items. I didn't make the ganache for the top, I just sprinkled it lightly with powered sugar. YUMMY!
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached white flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup cold water or 1 cup brewed coffee (I used cold coffee)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and sugar into an ungreased 8 inch square or 9 inch round baking tin.

In a bowl, measure and mix the oil, water or coffee and vanilla.

Pour the liquid ingredients into the baking tin and mix the batter with a fork or small whisk.

When the batter is smooth, add the vinegar and stir quickly. Pale swirls will occur where the vinegar and baking soda react. Stir just until the vinegar is even distributed throughout the batter.

Bake for 25-30 minutes. Set aside the cake to cool.

Sprinkle cake with powdered sugar while warm. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Chick'n & Spinach Salad

First let me say that I'm sorry for my extended absence. I've still been cooking but have really missed getting my blog on! I will do my best to get back to the twice a week posting. The weather had warmed up and I made this salad, yummy!! Now, it's getting cold again so get prepared for some soups or such. This looks like a lot of ingredients, but half are for the salad and the other half for the dressing. So, don't let the list keep you from trying this light, healthy and fast salad.
  • 2 pieces Gardein Chick'n Scallopini
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Cooking spray 
  • 1 20 ounce can cubed pineapple, drained and divided
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice 
  • 4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, halved and deseeded
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 1 ripe pear, sliced thin
  • 2/3 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1/2 (5-ounce) package fresh baby spinach, or as much as you feel like eating

Combine half of pineapple, cilantro, orange juice, vinegar, jalapeno, and garlic in a blender.

Process until smooth. With blender on, gradually add olive oil until blended.

Place chicken pieces on a tray. Sprinkle both sides of chicken evenly with chili powder and salt. Lightly coat a non-stick skillet with cooking spray. Add chicken to pan; cook according to package directions.

Combine remaining pineapple, pear, and the remaining ingredients - except spinach - in a large bowl.

Drizzle with 3/4 cup dressing, and toss gently to coat.

Place spinach on plate.

Divide salad evenly among plates - atop the spinach.

Cut chicken across the grain into thin slices; divide chicken evenly over salads.

Drizzle salads with more dressing as desired.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Creamy Potato Soup

Last weekend it reached freezing temps again! I am so ready for Spring, the azaleas are in full bloom, the dog wood tree is in full bloom, my hopes of warm weather are in full bloom!! I am hoping that was the last of the cold weather for us. March sure came in like a lion. Here's a delicious, hearty, easy soup to make if the temps need you to warm up!
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 sweet onion, chopped 
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 pounds cubed Russet potatoes, peeled
  • 5 cups no-chicken chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 medium head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 1/2 cups light soy milk
  • 3/4 cup chopped green onions, divided
  • 1/2 cup Toffuti sour cream
  • 2 ounces grated cheddar cheese (about 1/2 cup)

Preheat oven to 450°. Combine 1 tablespoon oil, cauliflower, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper on a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray; toss to coat.

Roast at 450° for 30 minutes or until browned, turning once.

While the cauliflower is roasting heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion, thyme, and garlic; sauté 5 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally.

Add potatoes, broth, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and bay leaf; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 35 minutes or until potatoes are very tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; discard bay leaf.

Add cauliflower and milk to the Dutch oven with the potatoes. Using an immersion blender, blend until smooth.

Taste, if needed stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/2 teaspoon pepper.  Add 1/2 cup green onions, and sour cream; stir until sour cream melts.

Ladle soup into 8 bowls or cups. Top evenly with remaining green onions and grated cheese.

Enjoy! I served with a slice of Anadama Bread on the side.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Jalapeno Cheese Grits

I love grits. Yes, as a Southern Girl I've eaten them all my life. Also, if you know me you know I love some heat, these jalapeno cheese grits will warm you up on a cold morning from the inside out! If you aren't a big fan of heat add fewer jalapenos or just leave them out all together.
  • 2 1/4 cups water
  • 1/2 cup quick cooking grits
  • 4 ounces vegan cheddar cheese, shredded (about a cup)
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup pickled jalapenos, diced

Add water to a saucepan and bring to a boil.

Slowly stir grits into water. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover. Cook according to directions found on the grits. Stirring occasionally. Mine took about 10 minutes (or until thick).

While  your grits are cooking shred your cheese and mince your jalapenos.

When grits are thick and cooked through add the remaining ingredients.

Stir well, return to heat and cook about 2 minutes until cheese is melted.

This makes 2 large servings or if you wish to serve these as a side you could probably get 4 servings out of it.

We had our last grapefruit from our tree to go with this. YUMMY!