I had the wonderful opportunity to hang out in Portland, OR last week. I had a great time and brought back some amazing produce procured from the Portland State University farmer’s market. Yes, you can get 5 pints of strawberries and good amount of rhubard through airport security.
5-cup food processor
measuring cups (dry and liquid)
Electric beater or stand mixer
90 g wheat pastry flour (about 3/4c)
90 g whole wheat flour (about 3/4 cups)
1 ml salt (about 1/4 tsp)
Some good shakes of cinnamon
A few shakes of nutmeg (about 1/3 the amount of cinnamon)
90 g coconut oil (just more than 3 ounces, or just less than 1/2 c) – must be SOLID, so put in fridge for a few hours if necessary
100 ml water (very, very cold water)
350 g rhubarb (4 extra large stalks)
700 g strawberries (between 2 – 3 pints)
30 ml arrowroot powder (2 tbs) (for a thicker pie double this amount, it was a tad runny after 3 hours cooling in the fridge)
55 g sugar (just more than 1/4 cup, add more if strawberries are tart)
Some good shakes cinnamon
A few shakes nutmeg (about 1/3 the amount of cinnamon)
20-25 ml lemon juice (I used one lemon juice ice cube, which is a 2/3 full cell in an ice cube tray), use less or omit if you do not like tart pies
Cream from 403 ml (13.6 oz) can of coconut milk
15 ml brown rice syrup
Few good shakes cinnamon
For the crust:
- Pulse flour, salt, and spices in food processor until combined (I used a 5-cup food processor)
- Add oil and continue to pulse until no large chunks of coconut remain (just smaller than a dime is where I drew the line)
- Add the water in two batches through the pour spout, pouring slowly while the machine is on
- Let the processor run for a minute and you should have a big dough ball
- Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour
For the filling:
- Wash, cut and weigh the rhubarb and strawberries, put off to the side in a bowl
- Add arrowroot, sugar, spices, and lemon juice to large mixing bowl and mix well
- Add fruit to the bowl and mix well
- Preheat oven to 215 degrees C (420 degrees F)
- Roll out pie crust and add to pie plate
- Add filling to pie
- Cook pie in heated oven for 15 minutes
- Turn heat down to 202 degrees C (395 degrees F) and cook for 35 more minutes
- Remove from oven when crust is slightly browned and let cool on a cooling rack for 30 minutes
- Let cool in fridge for at least 2 hours
To make the topping:
- Remove the coconut milk can from the refrigerator, do not tilt or shake, keep upright
- Remove the top of the can and skim the cream off the top out the can (reserve the water for smoothies, drinking, etc)
- Add coconut cream, brown rice syrup, and spices to the stand mixer bowl and whip on high 5 minutes, or add to mixing bowl and beat with an electric beater for 5 minutes
- Eat or refrigerate for a thicker consistency
Yum! Eat and share!
1.6 qt slow cooker or sauce pan
6 qt slow cooker or soup pot
Ladle or wooden stirring spoon
Ingredients: Pinto Beans
218g (1 cup) fresh pinto beans*
325g (1 medium) white onion
1 tsp garlic granules
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tbs fresh, thai basil
oil, to coat crock
Methods: Pinto Beans
Gather ingredients and measure out
Slice onion ~3.2mm (1/8″ inch) thick, cut rounds into 8 pieces
Oil 1.6 qt crock
add herbs and spices
add pinto beans
fill with enough water to cover beans 50.8mm (2″)
Cook 3-4 hours
Ingredients: Veg – Pinto – Quinoa Stew
634g (2 medium) eggplants
450g (1 large) zucchini
111g (3 stalks) celery
1 – 411g (14.5 oz) can fire-roasted, diced tomatoes
10 medium tomatoes, fresh or frozen (thawed a little), deskinned
230g (1.25 cups) uncooked quinoa
3 cups vegetable broth
1-2 tbs fresh thai basil
2 tsp cumin (divided)
2 tsp garlic granules (divided)
2 tsp coriander (divided)
2 tsp sage
2 tbs miso paste
Prepared pinto beans
Oil, to coat crock
Methods: Veg – Pinto – Quinoa Stew
Gather ingredients and measure out – pinto beans will be about 1.5 hours into cooking
Oil the crock
Add sage, and half of the cumin, garlic granules, and coriander to crock
Slice eggplant and zuccini 3mm (1/8″) thick, cut pieces into halves, quarters, or sixths, until uniform in size
Cut tomatoes in sixths or eighths, deskin
Add quinoa to crock
Add cut, summer veggies to crock
Add can of diced tomatoes
Heat on high 2.5 hours
Add the pinto beans to the crock after 2.5 hours
Add the rest of the herbs/spices in between the summer veg
Cook 1 hour, stir
Remove some of the extra water and add the miso paste, stirring until dissolved
Add the miso broth back to the crock
Cook ten more minutes
* may substitute 1 cup dried pinto beans that have been soaked for twelve hours
Alternate flavor combos:
add the onion, a small can of green chiles, cumin, cilantro, and minced garlic to the pinto beans
This weekend I bought Fresh From the Vegan Slow Cooker: 200 Ultra-Convenient, Super-Tasty, Completely Animal-Free Recipes by Robin Robertson.
I am so excited to add this book to my collection. I will continue to post as I make my way through all of the recipes, such as Spicy Tomato Queso Dip, Slow Cooker Pho, and Wine Braised Seitan with Cremini Mushrooms.
On to the meal:
Wow! I am impressed.
This Split Pea and Barley Stew was fantastic! But don’t take my word for it, my omni friends, P, PRT, and T all raved as well.
So, this stew was actually made by my awesome partner, T. He used yellow split peas, instead of green. It doesn’t define which to use in the recipe, and since we had yellow that’s what was used. I am so glad, because the yellow color really stood out against the deep red of the tomato sauce and the vibrant orange of sweet potato and carrot.
The recipe calls for 1.5 lbs sweet potatoes, but here we used 1 lb. sweet potato and .5 lb. red potato. I think T also doubled (or tripled) the herbs/spices.
I topped it with Tofutti brand Better Than Sour Cream, some avocado slices, and toast. YUM! I brought a bowl of it to work for lunch, and added 1/3 C of some cooked spelt. Delicious, again.
A special thanks to my partner for making me some awesome dinner.
After a long day of hanging with friends (aka moderate drinking, slight hooliganism) I need some easy and delicious replenishments. I like to model my meals after the Harvard Healthy Plate. This breakfast is easy, nutritious, and tastes awesome!
Small sauce pan
Medium size frying pan
Plate and fork
1/2 c quinoa (makes 3 servings, we’ll use one in this recipe)
1.5 c Easiest Vegetable Broth
1 Yukon Gold Potato
1/4 c sliced crookneck squash
1/4 c sliced carrot
2 large monterey mushrooms
handful of spinach
1/2 cup cooked (or rinsed, canned) adzuki beans
2.5 tablespoons dark sesame oil
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
shoyu, to taste
1. Wash your hands!
2. Clean vegetables
3. Prick holes in potato with a fork. Add to toaster oven and bake at 425 for 20 minutes.
4. Add quinoa and vegetable broth to sauce pan, cover. Heat on medium high to boiling (about seven minutes), then turn heat down to medium. (Total cooking time is approximately 15 minutes. Remove the cover after 10.)
5. Add sesame oil to frying pan, heat on medium. Add onion and cook for one minute. Add mushrooms and cook for two minutes. Add carrots and squash, cook 3.5 minutes. Add spinach and beans and cook two more minutes.
6. Deglaze the pan with rice vinegar.
7. Add veggies and beans to plate.
8. Add 1/2 cup quinoa to plate.
9. Add 1/2 potato to plate.
10. Drizzle with olive oil and shoyu.
I took one serving of quinoa (1/2 cup) and half of the potato and mixed them together with a little Earth Balance and shoyu for my partner who was experiencing symptoms concurrent with a hangover. He ate it all right quick.
The extra serving of quinoa I put in a small rubbermaid and put it in the fridge.
4.5 tablespoons of oil is kind of a lot, but I love the mouth feel that oil adds. Add less if you cutting calories. But remember if you’re on a vegan diet, that it is important to make sure you are getting enough lipids.
So, after a long hiatus due to school, I am back! I am so excited to cook my face off now that I have graduated! Woop! I had an awesome day in the kitchen yesterday, and after throwing some veggie broth into the crock pot, I made this soup.
The original recipe can be found here.
I made a few changes. I halved the recipe. I sautéed the garlic, onion, potato, salt, pepper, and oregano (in lieu of basil) for about ten minutes in safflower oil on medium heat.
I then added 1.25 cups of water and a few teaspoons of vegetarian chicken broth powder (Whole Foods bulk section) to the pan and heated through.
Then I followed the recipe as noted. I did use veggie broth in the food processor with the cashews.
Today, I tried too many new things at once and I learned something. Trying too many new things at once is a bad idea.
I made the amaranth that was in my pantry in a rice cooker. I’ve never had it before. I made it with vegetable broth and it was… okay? I think I need to make some with just plain water so I can understand the taste at it’s most basic. I’ve heard (probably on Reddit, so maybe it’s not true) that you need to try a new food fifteen times before it’s bearable or likable or something. So, maybe I just need to have it a few more times. It was kind of the consistency of porridge and was hoping for something more like quinoa or brown rice.
Then my rice cooker broke.
I also tried my hand at a new peanut sauce. My own recipe. I forgot to add the vinegar and by that time I’d tried to make all these fixes, and…. argh.
It was my first day of school today, so I was pretty exhausted. I really wanted to end my day with something awesome and delicious and what I got was just okay. But, I can’t make every dish a home run or it probably wouldn’t be fun anymore. And I shouldn’t feel bad. Sometimes you try something new and you get burned. You just have to keep trying. Now I’m determined to perfect this elusive peanut sauce, so I can share it with everyone.
Patience is a virtue when trying new recipes, or just cooking for yourself in general.
When I first started making soups from scratch and buying grains from the bulk bin, I went through a lot of tetra-packed vegetable broth. That got expensive. It’s about $3 for 32 oz., or four cups of broth. This recipe is an easy way to make broth, and take advantage of vegetable scraps you would have otherwise thrown away.
Collecting the scraps is easy as long as you remember to put them in the freezer.
Take a sharpie and ziploc bag. Write “broth” on the outside of the bag. When you are making meals take the tops, ends, and skins (really any part that you are going to throw away) of celery, carrots, onions, shallots, potatoes, and garlic, and put them in the broth bag. You could try using tomatoes as well, but only the fruit. The leaves and stems will make you sick. There are probably some other vegetables you might like as well. I do not add any vegetables from the Brassicaceae family, because they are bitter, and will make your broth bitter. The Brassicaceae family includes broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, turnips, radishes and many more. I have never used spinach or beet greens, but those are in the Amaranthaceae family and might be okay.
So, when you have some spare time and about 1.5 cups of vegetable scraps you can make your broth. The broth takes less time to make if you chop the vegetables up before freezing them, but it shouldn’t take too long to cut them if you were feeling lazy. You will want to chop the veggies into really tiny pieces. The greater the surface area (the smaller the pieces), the better the broth will taste and the less time it will need to cook. Alternatively, you might try tossing everything in the food processor, but I think this might make straining difficult. I’ll try this next time and add an update.
After the vegetables are cut, add them to a large sauce pan with 10 cups of water. Turn the heat to high and bring to a roaring boil. Turn the heat to medium and watch three episodes of South Park. My broth cooked for 1 hour, 20 minutes including the time it took for the water to boil. You may or may not need to cook for longer depending on the vegetables you used.
I tried the broth after it had been cooking for 35 minutes and it tasted strongly of celery. Then I tried it at one hour and I could taste the onion it, but it was faint. At 1 hour, 15 minutes I thought it needed just a little longer and it was perfect five minutes later.
You’ll have to taste the broth a few times to get it to a flavor that you like.
Take a strainer and put it inside of a pitcher (can use a bowl, but really not very good for this). Pour the broth from the pan, through the strainer, and into the pitcher. Put the leftover veggies in your compost (or the trash, if you must). Take an empty jar (I use old whiskey bottles, which hold 3 cups of liquid) and put a funnel at the top. Pour the broth from the pitcher into the bottle. Store in your refrigerator. Alternatively, store in your freezer and just take out two nights before you plan to use it, or when you run out. If you plan to freeze it, make sure the bottle is only 2/3-3/4 full.
In total, this recipe made between five and six cups of broth. I only got five because I used a bowl instead of a pitcher and about a cup spilled all over the counter and the floor. It took about an hour of passive time, and about ten minutes of active time. Really easy, really delicious.
I don’t add salt to my broth. I salt dishes as I cook them. But if you do want to add some, do it at the end, when the flavor is where you want it. Adding salt in the beginning might be deceiving in terms of taste.
____________ UPDATE! February 1, 2013_____________________________
Last weekend I made more vegetable broth. I threw the vegetables in the food processor beforehand, and I’m going to do that from now on, because it didn’t make straining more difficult, and made the flavor even better.
My broth turned out slightly spicy. I’m not positive, but I think it’s because I added carrot greens this time, unlike the time before. Next time I will not add them and see what happens. The spiciness didn’t make the broth bad, it was just an unexpected end note. I guess I’ll have to have a taco night and see if it gives an extra kick to the rice. My rice cooker is still broken so I will try to find soon.