Pain in to Power

Persian Raisin Cookies

raisin_tea_cookies

Hello and welcome to March’s Group A SRC reveal!  I was soooo excited to see that this month I was partnered up with a “new to me” blog: Della Cocina Provera which is run by the awesome Francesca a DC ex-pat living in Amsterdam.  Her “poor kitchen” is stuffed with delicious Italian and Iranian meals reflecting her background.  I knew from the start I wanted to go for a Perisan dish, growing up in an Italian family I knew most of those recipes and part of the fun with SRC is branching out and trying new things – so Persian it was!  Eventually I was able to narrow it down to 5 options, including a yogurt dip, an eggplant stew, some raisin cookies,  and two not so Persian dishes that just sounded fantastic: Blue Cheese Pasta and Cauliflower cous-cous.   In the end my need for sweets won out and I went out to get some raisins for some delicious cookies.  I was a bit nervous with these cookies as they are missing some of the more traditional ingredients (salt, baking soda, etc) but that’s part of the reason why these cookies are that easy!

Pain in to Power

Serves: Makes 3 dozen cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups white sugar
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups raisins
  • 2 1/3 cups flour

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking sheet.
  2. Add the melted butter, oil, and sugar to a mixing bowl and cream, then add in the eggs ones at time.
  3. Stir in the raisins and then fold in the flour.
  4. Drop a tsp of batter on to the sheets being sure to leave at least 2 inches between cookies.
  5. Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake 10 to 15 minutes, or until slightly golden.
  6. Allow the to sit on the sheet for 2 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack. Allow to finish cooling then serve and Enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2015/03/pain-in-to-power.html

I hope to make these cookies again when my oven is cooperating as I had a bit of trouble getting these to cook properly.  Regardless of if they bake “correctly” they were fantastic, and went perfectly with iced coffee.


Fix What’s Broken

Mulligatawny Style Curry

mulligatawny_stew

I have a curry addiction, I’ll admit it – it’s totally true.  I love the spice, both the heat and the flavor, and the fact that it warms me up on even the coldest day.  With the Siberian Vortex currently coming down on the Mid-Atlantic a bit of heat and spice is very much needed and appreciated.  Still in shock over how low the temperatures have been and are going to be, just totally ridiculous especially since I’m technically in the south.  Anyway, enough about the weather cuz it’s time to time to focus on the curry.  I can’t remember the first time I had mulligatawny stew but it had to be years ago as it involved chicken.  Which is why I set out to create a vegan version, no chicken involved!

Fix What’s Broken

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 shallots, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne powder
  • 16 oz tofu, well pressed and cubed
  • 1 pink lady apple, diced
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a dutch oven then add the shallots, green pepper, and carrot. Cook for 5-7 minutes, then stir in the curry powder and cook for an additional minute before adding the tofu. Continue cooking the tofu until golden on all sides.
  2. Add the apple along with vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Turn heat to low then simmer for 25 minutes before stirring in the greek yogurt and the golden raisins. Cook for a final 5 minutes then Serve and Enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2015/02/fix-whats-broken.html

 For dinner we enjoyed the stew as is, while I added lentils the next day in order to make it go a bit further.   For those who don’t want all the spice feel free to drop the cayenne powder – or switch for something milder.  Whatever works best for you!

Rain Starts

Cheese”burger” Mac & Cheese

seitan_mac_cheese

When I first went vegetarian, I thought I could just make up a box of something and just leave out the meat – then I started reading labels and realized how so not healthy that option was.  With that I started experimenting to see what “out of the box” options I could come up with that would have the same great taste but healthier (i.e. less sodium).  It took a bit of time until I could figure out the right method, but now I have down to a science!   Even better, this dish can be adapted for vegans and all cooks up in one pot.  The one pot paste took a bit of time to get used to but the trick is to add less water than you think as seriously much easier to add more water later than to eat a soggy mess (trust me).

Rain Starts

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 vidalia onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 tbsp Italian seasonings
  • 1 cup seitan crumbles
  • 1/2 lb elbow pasta
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 cups tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 cup shredded extra sharp cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and cook for 10 minutes, then add the Italian seasonings and cook for an additional 5 minutes - stirring to prevent sticking/burning.
  2. Add the seitan along with the pasta and water and bring to a boil.
  3. Cook for 10 minutes, then turn heat to low add the tomatoes and the shredded cheese. Keep stirring until the cheese melts. Add a bit of milk if too dry, give a final stir and keep on low heat for a final 5 minutes.
  4. Serve and Enjoy!

Notes

Vegan Option: sub the cheddar cheese with Daiya meltables

http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2015/02/rain-starts.html

For an added crunch, add some fresh spinach at the very end – or some kale!  To add an extra punch, I used tomato pasta which also gave the dish a fantastic shade of red.  I’m a huge fan of flavored pastas, especially ones that I don’t have to make myself, even if I know they aren’t as healthy as they might advertise to be.  All the flavors of a cheeseburger, minus the meat!

#WinePW Clear to See

Boozy Berry Pie

pie

Happy Valentine’s Day!!!!  Today’s post is part of WinePW #9 – an awesome event that pairs delicious foods with fantastic wines that was started by David last June.  Since today is Valentine’s day I decided to go with something super sweet and sum what red.  Once upon a time I could drink red wines, and then I hit my early 20s and that ability went away.  So I started exploring white wines and with that the amazing world of Reislings.  From California to Australia to Germany to Maryland – these sweet whites are fantastic for pairing with spicy foods or for enhancing the sweetness of fresh fruit!  For this event I went with a local Reisling from Basignani winery which is just up the road from me in Sparks, MD.  I tend towards Reislings that are more on the fruity side than the floral side, and this one certainly falls in that arena!  With that, I knew I wanted to do a dessert featuring the berries that have started popping up at the local markets, thanks to greenhouses and high tunnels.   This pies features three awesome fruits who have the right amount of subtle tartness to go perfectly with my peach influenced wine.   Using the white wine also means no added sugar – and depending on the crust being used this dish can be gluten free and/or vegan.  I went with a press-in-pan graham cracker crust, skipping the cinnamon tho this time and using a honey graham cracker.

#WinePW Clear to See

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • Favorite Pie Crust (bottom only)
  • 2 tbsp Riesling
  • 3 cups mixed berries
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Line a 9inch pie pan with your favorite crust (I used a press-in-pan graham cracker crust) and set aside.
  2. Heat the wine over low heat in a deep saute dish for a few minutes, then add the berries and continue cooking for 10 minutes - stirring frequently but being careful to not break too many of the berries. Turn heat to low and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Pour in to pie crust.
  3. Bake for 25 minutes, remove from oven and sit for 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2015/02/winepw-clear-to-see.html

Make sure to check out what everyone else came up with as part of this awesome challenge!  Looking forward to seeing all sorts of tasting wine pairings – and even more so looking forward to next month!!!

I’ve always been a fan of mixed berry pies, but generally the costs associated with three (or more!) types of berries have kept me from making them at home.  However, this past weekend I had a eureka moment and picked up a “berry fruit salad” container from the ready made department.  So instead of spending $10 or more, it was closer to $4 – much better!  The mixture I grabbed included strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries which made it the perfect combo for my boozy creation!

Winner!

Found out late last night (2/12) that one of the Dancing Veggies readers WON the Acala package as part of the TripleSBites challenge!  So with that, CONGRATULATIONS to Jeanne :-D

New post coming tomorrow (2/13) and then a special Valentine post on 2/14!!!!

Again, HUGE congratulations to Jeanne!!!!