Tag Archives: garlic

Mysterious As

Roasted Vegetable Couscous

Roasted Vegetable Couscous

Welcome to Group A’s April installment of Secret Recipe Club!  Every month I wait with baited breath to see what amazing blog I get partnered with and this month I was thrilled to see a blog I was very (VERY) familiar with.  I have been following Evelyne’s Cheap Ethnic Eats since before there was a Dancing Veggies and it was after stumbling onto the International Incident Party link-ups that I decided to take my (now) hubby’s offer to build me a blog.  So a HUGE thanks to Evelyne (and the other blogs of IIP) for inspiring me to go forth and blog!   Needless to say picking one recipe from her blog was a rather difficult task but I was able to narrow things down to a top 10 by focusing on recipes that featured ingredients or cooking styles that are outside my normal range.  Which is why I was debating such things as Coconut Brownie Waffles, Greek Yogurt Cheesecake, and Multi-Vegetable Paella before settling on her Roasted Vegetable Couscous.  For the most part I stick with recipes that are either on the stove or in the oven as I’m normally restricted on cooking time thanks to the fur children.  However some rather intense weather freed up the time normally reserved for dog walking, so I decided to heat up the kitchen and get to work!

Mysterious As

Serves 3-4

Ingredients

  • 1 yellow squash, sliced and quartered (about 1 cup)
  • 1 zucchini, sliced and quartered (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup baby bella mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 1/2 cups pre-soaked chickpeas, well rinsed
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 4 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup dry couscous

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. Place the squash, zucchini, and mushrooms in a roasting pan and top with half of the olive oil. Roasted for 20 minutes, then remove pan and add the tomatoes. Roast for a final 10 minutes.
  3. Towards the end of the roasting time heat the remaining olive oil in a large pan, add the garlic and red onion and cook for 5 minutes. Add the seasonings and cook for an additional 2 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent burning.
  4. Remove the roasted vegetables from the oven and add to the pan with the onion/garlic.
  5. Add the stock, raisins, chickpeas tomato paste, salt and couscous. Bring mixture to a boil, then stir, cover, and turn heat down to low. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes, or until couscous has finished cooking.
  6. Serve and enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/04/mysterious-as.html

I switched up the vegetables from the original recipe, but that’s one of the awesome things about this recipe – anything will work!  I also cooked the couscous directly in the sauce in order to save a dish, which resulted in some ultra flavorful couscous, and added more chickpeas instead of serving it with the tofu since DH is on a no-soy diet.  In the future I might be tempted to just do all the veggies in a saute pan rather then roasting, but there is something to be said about a fresh roasted tomato.  All in all another awesome recipe thanks to Cheap Ethnic Eats and the Secret Recipe Club!

Open Door

Belgian Endive Pear Boats

Endive Pear Boats

So far so good with the weather – Mother Nature is cooperating with the plan to end winter and signs of spring are everywhere.  A few of the Farmer’s Markets will be opening this weekend, with the BIG one for the area following next weekend!  I have a rather long list of vegetables that I want to try this year, including radishes (poor JT) and about five different types of greens.  Thanks for the /52weeksofcooking challenge I’ve already knocked one “green” of the list with this modified Belgian Salad.  When I tried to find a cuisine for the Belgian challenge I wasn’t that shocked to see all the not-so-vegetarian friendly food.  While Belgian Waffles were rather tempting (with Trader Joe’s cookie butter!!!), I’ve done waffles before and while I know that you don’t have to use a deep waffle iron for Belgian Waffles it just feels wrong to think about using a standard waffle iron – let alone using one!  So I decided to tackle the vegetable that kept popping up in so many dishes: endives.  I think I might have had an endive salad many moons ago at a wedding on the Cape but outside of a vague memory I couldn’t recall the taste.  However Pinterest was more than able to serve up a number of endive recipes, and I couldn’t resist the temptation to do one of the many cute boat designs that I saw.

Endive Pear Boats

Serves: Yields 8 Boats

Serves 4-8, as an appetizer or side

Ingredients

  • 2 small heads Belgian Endive, well washed
  • 2 Anjou Pears, cubed
  • 1 leek, chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • salt and pepper - to taste
  • 1/4 cup Blue Cheese, crumbled (optional)

Instructions

  1. Remove the four largest outer leaves from the endives and place on a large plate, open side up. Set Aside
  2. Shred the remaining endive and place in a large bowl along with the pear and leek.
  3. In a small bowl (or dressing mixer) combine the olive oil, vinegar, and garlic. Beat (or shake) until fully mixed, then pour over the shredded endive mixture. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Carefully stuff around 2 tbsp of the endive mixture into the prepare endive boats. Top with Blue Cheese Crumbles (optional) and Serve!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/04/open-door.html

In order to not kill my husband I dropped the nuts from the recipes I saw but those could easily be added back in for an extra crunch.  The tart endive was a great contrast to the sweetness of the pears, with the balsamic vinaigrette bringing it all together.   This would make a fantastic appetizer, especially since they act as their own plate!  I plan on trying this again in late summer, using some apples in place of the pears…or maybe in addition to.

Shall I Be

One Pot Pasta

One Pot Pasta

I’m not going to lie, I’m a bit of a Pinterest nut.  I find so many interesting and tasty looking treats that I just can’t help but to “pin all the things!”  When I started seeing one-pot pasta meals I was intrigued as it goes against everything I was taught growing up regarding the proper cooking of pasta.  Which is why I was expecting this post to be more of a #pinterestfail than anything else, I just couldn’t imagine this working.  Just worked it did, after checking out almost half a dozen recipes.  I wanted to insure that my pasta was al dente and my vegetables cooked but not floppy – which isn’t exactly the easiest thing.  The first step was figuring out what vegetables have a similar cooking time, and what type of pasta was equal to or less than that cooking time.  I wanted the pasta to have the shortest cook time just in case the vegetables needed extra time, again al dente pasta is (and always will be) the goal for any pasta dish.  Luckily green vegetable are starting to show up at the market so I had a very large selection to pick from!

Shall I Be

Serves 3-4

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 vidalia onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 6 basil leaves, minced
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp roasted red pepper flake
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 2 large carrots, sliced 1/2 inch thick
  • 1/2 cup frozen sweet peas
  • 8 oz penne (look for one with a 10 minute cook time)

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and cook for 7 minutes, or until slightly golden. Add the rosemary, basil, and thyme and cook for 2 minutes - stirring frequently to prevent burning.
  2. Add the water along with the salt, red pepper flakes, and vegetables. Bring to a boil, then add the pasta and cook for 10 minutes. Stir regularly, using a tong as needed to make sure the pasta cooks thoroughly.
  3. Allow to slightly cool and then serve!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/03/shall-i-be.html

Now this recipe comes with a true tip/trick: cut and EVERYTHING first!  Once it’s time to add the water everything needs to be ready to go in order to avoid a mushy mess.  For this same reason I would avoid most members of the squash family and would also hold off adding any tomatoes until the very end.

Felt Like Springtime

Sweet Potato Falafels

with Garlic Hummus

Sweet Potato Falafel

Welcome to March’s Secret Recipe Club Post!  It’s a little strange how excited I get when I find out what blog I’ve been assigned, and this month was no different.  This month I was given Isabelle’s Crumb Blog and I was hooked from the moment I saw her intro.  This ”coffee-chugging, booty-shaking, bargain-shopping, cookbook-collecting, photo-snapping, trucker-swearing, farmers-market-loving self-taught cook with a Mister and two cats to feed” chick has a blog chock full of recipes, for which I can overlook her being a cat person.  I want to say I pinned close to 30 recipes are my first go thru, before finally narrowing things down to the top 5.  In the end it became a battle between Saag Paneer and Sweet Potato Falafels, with the inability to find any paneer being the deciding factor.  I loved that the falafel recipe was really three recipes in one, though in the end I only did two of the three.  I have attempted, and failed, at making falafels before but these held together amazingly well making it super easy to fry them up.

Sweet Potato Falafel

Serves: Yields 12 Falafels

Ingredients

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (19 oz) chickpeas, rinsed and thoroughly drained
  • 1 cup mashed sweet potato
  • ¼ cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp fresh rosemary
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1?2 tsp chili flakes
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. Place the garlic, chickpeas, sweat potato, bread crumbs, and herbs in a food processor or blender. Process until almost pureed and then form walnut sized balls then place on plate and cover in plastic wrap. Place in fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Heat oil in a deep frying pan until 375 degrees. Remove the falafels from the fridge and use a slotted spoon to place in the hot oil. Cook for 3-5 minutes on each side, using the spoon to gently flip them.
  3. Set aside finished falafels on a cookie sheet covered in a paper towels.
  4. Allow to cool and enjoy
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/03/felt-like-springtime.html

Garlic Hummus

Serves: Yields 1/2 cup Garlic Hummus

Ingredients

  • 1 can (19 ounce) chickpeas, well rinsed but reserving 1 tbsp of liquid
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Place everything in a blender and puree until smooth. Place in fridge, well covered, until time to use.
  2. Serve with the cooked falafels, either as a dip or as part of a falafel sandwich and Enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/03/felt-like-springtime.html

I served these without the pita per husband’s request along with some vinegar carrots, cucumber, greek yogurt, and (of course) the garlic hummus from the original post.   They were delicious and as a bonus heated up rather well the next day for lunch!  Needless to say another awesome recipe thanks to SRC.

Take a Breath

Sweet Potato Lentil Burger (Aussie Style)

Sweet Potato Lentil Burger

Prior to this week’s Australian challenge on /52weeksofcooking my knowledge of Australian food was limited to that I seen on TV and that which is shown on the awesome Australian show known as Dance Academy (season 3 finally on Netflix streaming!!!!!).  So essentially this left me with The Outback (not happening) and salad (rather boring).  Luckily there is this thing called the internet, and with that Google, which allowed me to find all sorts of delicious treats.  In that search I found an unusual number of links talking about beets and burgers – which I didn’t really understand.  Granted this could be because I’m only starting to tolerate beets but still, beets on a burger???  However I was intrigued and so I set off to figure out a way to do a vegetarian burger – Australian style.

Sweet Potato Lentil Burgers

Serves: Makes 5-6 patties

Ingredients

  • 1 cup lentils
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 cup mashed sweet potatoes
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup beet leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs (or Red Mill GF)
  • 1/4 cup mayo (vegan or otherwise)
  • 2 tbsp siracha
  • 2 beets, sliced
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • salt and pepper (to taste)

Instructions

  1. Rinse the lentils then place in a small sauce pan along with the vegetable stock. Bring to a quick boil, then cover and allow to simmer over low heat for 25 minutes. Allow to slightly cool then mix in the sweet potato mash, along with the garlic cloves and beet leaves.
  2. Form the patties and then lightly cover in the panko bread crumbs. Place on a plate, cover in saran wrap, and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile mix up the chili mayo by adding the siracha to the mayo (or veganaise), then place back in the fridge until ready.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet, or griddle, over medium heat. Gently add the patties and cook for 5 minutes on each time, adding the beets to the skillet after flipping. Cook the burgers until they are slightly brown on each side - at which point the beets should be roasted.
  5. Assemble the burgers using the siracha mayo, beets, and burgers.
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/03/take-a-breath.html

For an even more authentic burger experience add some roasted pineapple and a fried egg – which was (and is) a bit too much for me.  However I have to say that the spicy sauce went fantastic with the sweetness of the potatoes and the tart earthiness of the beets.  Lots of contrasts in this dish but it all came together to make a fantastic meal.  I served the burger with some spicy carrots – which will eventually show up on the blog.  I had a fantastic time with this, so another success thanks to /52weeksofcooking.