Friday, November 13, 2009

Dee-lish Tempeh Curry

I can't believe this is my first time cooking tempeh! I did a quick online search for tempeh recipes before heading to the market and up popped this lovely from Diet, Dessert, and Dogs. As it happens, Ricki of DD&D is also following an anti-candida diet plan, so her recipe was definitely the one for me. So good and so easy, this one will be made again soon.
I did add quite a bit more broth than she did, but you can just add as needed. In fact when I reheated the leftovers for lunch today I added half a bunch of organic chard and more broth still and mixed it with a bit of cooked quinoa. Even better than last night. Next time I'll make this with a full bunch of chard, or other green at the start.
Note that Ricki's recipe doesn't mention when to add the tempeh back in...I added it with the peas.
There also wasn't a salt amount given, but since I was using unsalted almond butter, I added ~1/2-3/4 tsp Kosher salt, along with a touch of cayenne for some heat.
I served this with a side of raita made with goat's milk yogurt, cucumber, and fresh mint.
Do try this recipe! Especially if you've never cooked tempeh before...super yum.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Broiled Rainbow Trout

I was thrilled to find that our fishmonger had just gotten these lovely whole dressed rainbow trout in on the morning I visited. I'd always wanted to just cook the whole fish...well, not quite the whole fish...I had her whack off the heads so they wouldn't be staring at us from our plates! I should have had her take the tails off too, but I'll know better next time. This couldn't be an easier preparation for some quickie protein. We've started eating more rainbow trout in lieu of tilapia these days for it's more healthful fat profile. Tilapia apparently has a whole lot of omega 6 fatty acids, and those really aren't very good for you. Not that I won't eat it anymore, just that I'll take the rainbow trout over tilapia if it works for my recipe.
Right as I was about to slice up some store bought lemon for the insides of the fishies, the Monster walked in the door with 3, count 'em 3!, beautiful meyer lemons grown by a very generous collegue!! Yippee yahooey! So away went the store bought lemon and one of the meyers went under the knife instead.
We ate the trout with roasted eggplant, steamed veggies topped with hummus and some whole wheat naan. Well, I ate eggplant & veggies/hummus...Monster just had the veggies with naan and hummus. ;-) SOOO hard to watch him eat that naan!!!

Broiled Rainbow Trout:

Whole dressed trout fillets
lemon juice
olive oil
Kosher salt
sweet smoked paprika
cayenne pepper; just a pinch
fresh or dried thyme
thin lemon slices

Pre-heat broiler on high with the rack ~4" away from the flame. I used the uppermost rack in my oven.
Brush insides of fish with olive oil, then squeeze lemon juice in each.
sprinkle salt, paprika, cayenne and thyme within the fish.
Finish each with 3 thin slices of lemon.
Place on lightly oiled foil lined baking sheet and broil for 4 minutes.
Flip the fish and broil for another 4 minutes and your fishies should be done.

Watch for bones when eating these puppies. Delish!

Roasted Eggplant

I've finally discovered that just because the Monster doesn't like eggplant, doesn't mean I can't just make it for myself. Specially since they come in all sorts of groovy shapes and sizes! When I first made this "recipe" I used paler purple, long skinny Japanese eggplants. This time I found a cute 6" tall globe eggplant and it cooked up just as nicely. I went a little longer in the oven since it was fatter than the others. Just watch your time depending on how big your eggplant is. The smaller ones tend to be less seedy, and therefore less prone to tasting bitter. Also, look for a smaller green cap and firm, shiny skin.

Roasted Eggplant with Thyme:

Eggplant (as many as you'd like to roast)
Kosher salt
olive oil
fresh thyme sprigs
fresh lemon juice to serve (optional)

Slice eggplant in half from it's top to it's bottom. Make deep crosshatching slashes almost to the skin. Salt each half with Kosher salt, getting it all the way down into the cuts.
Let eggplant sit, cut side up for 30 minutes.

~15 minutes into the salting process, pre-heat oven to 400.

Squeeze liquid from eggplant over the sink and wipe away the excess salt. I tend to rinse the eggplants so they're not too salty, but the original recipe didn't have you do that. Just make sure to really squeeze all the water/liquid from them well and dry with a paper towel.
Brush cuts sides with olive oil and place several sprigs of thyme on each before placing cut side down on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
I tend to lightly oil the skins of the eggplant too.
Roast for 20-45+ minutes depending on the shape/size of your eggplant. I like them nice and soft but not mushy, but whatever floats your boat.
They're lovely with a little lemon squeezed over them.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Puree of Celery Root Soup

Yay! Something else I can eat! We had a loooong rainy Sunday at home and this was just the ticket for lunch paired with a simple salad. You may have passed by the lowly looking celery root (or celeriac) in the grocery store because 1) it's ugly as sin and 2) what the heck would you do with it anyway??
Well now you know...make this soup! :-)
I found a really big root, so I multiplied the recipe written below by 1.5 when I made it. Good thing too, as it wouldn't have made much otherwise. I'd go ahead and double the recipe next time using 2 lbs of celery root.
Orangette said to use a regular blender, not a food processor or stick blender, or the soup doesn't seem to emulsify properly.

Puree of Celery Root Soup:
(Adapted from the NYT, discovered on Orangette's lovely blog)

2 ½ Tbs olive oil, divided
1 small leek, white and very light green part only, coarsely chopped
½ medium yellow onion, coarsely chopped
1 stalk celery, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1 lb. peeled, chopped celery root (I only had to use 1 since that mother was 1.5 lbs!)
3 cups mild chicken or vegetable broth
½ tsp salt, plus more to taste
4-5 Tbs skim milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)
Chopped chervil, for serving (optional)

In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm 2 Tbs olive oil. Add the leek, onion, celery (but not the celery root like I did!), and garlic, and sauté until softened but not browned, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
Add the celery root, broth, and salt, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, partially cover, and simmer until the celery root is very tender. It should break apart easily when poked with a fork; on my stove, this takes about 35-45 minutes. Remove the soup from the heat.

Using a blender and working in small batches – when working with hot liquids, never fill the blender more than 1/2 full and hold cover down with a kitchen towel - purée the soup until very smooth. Add the remaining ½ Tbs oil and the milk, and stir to incorporate. Taste, and adjust seasoning as necessary. Reheat gently until just steaming.

Makes 4 small servings as written

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Heidi's Awesome Red Lentil Soup

This is really good. I can't eat the leftovers on this yeast-free program, so it's lying in wait for the Monster in the freezer. I have dreams about getting to devour a huge pot of this stuff, so thought I'd post my photo and a link to Heidi's recipe. I had to cook mine about twice as long as she did to get tender rice. Maybe because I used short-grain brown rice? Who knows...just don't be surprised if it takes longer than 30 minutes. I used organic veggie broth for the liquid and topped only with tamari roasted pepitas, crumbled feta, and a swirl of olive oil. Mmmmm.

Hm. Breakfast.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Fresh Tomato Sauce with Thyme

Ok, so maybe I'll post things afterall. Just because I can't have this rustic tomato sauce atop homemade goat cheese ravioli doesn't mean YOU can't. A good easy sauce to make for any pasta, or even steamed veggie, rice or hm...well, I'm sure you could figure out another use if none of those float your boat. The recipe comes from the sole issue of Vegetarian Times that I kept. Basically for this recipe and the pasta that went along with it. I ate it today on a bed of spaghetti squash and ground turkey breast along with a spinach salad for a very satisfying lunch today.

Fresh Tomato Sauce with Thyme:
(Vegetarian Times)

2 tsp olive oil
3/4 cup chopped onion (I probably used 1 cup)
3 cloves garlic, minced
~1/8+ red pepper flakes
5 seeded and chopped tomatoes (I used 7)
2 tsp fresh thyme
salt and pepper to taste

In a Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
Saute onion for ~2 minutes.
Add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook 30 seconds, stirring.
Add tomatoes and thyme and when they come to a good simmer, turn heat to medium-low.
Simmer for ~25 minutes or until slightly thickened.
Add salt and pepper to taste.


Ugh. So after a short course of antibiotics I'm all out of whack again and am back on the yeast-free diet I did 3 years ago. This means no sugars of any, and I mean any kind, even including those in dairy, no grains, no fruits, nothing fermented (vinegars, soy sauce, etc.), no mushrooms, no legumes at the beginning, leaving me to eat what you ask??? Well answer is not too terribly much beyond tofu, lean meats, seafood, eggs, and non-starchy veggies. I can use lemon and lime juices on my salads etc. too. I'm eating avocados, almonds, pumpkin seeds and seed butters too, or I'd disappear into the ether.
Never thought I'd willingly spoon olive oil into my mouth straight in an attempt to keep weight on, but there it is.
No fun recipes to be had here any time soon. Bah humbug.