Tag Archives: onion

Steal My Sunshine

Summer Tomato Sauce

summer_tomato_pasta_sauce

Working a Farmer’s Market is fantastic, especially when there are leftover tomatoes at the end of the day!  Second tomatoes aren’t always the easiest to use, but if you are willing to put the work in when it comes time to cutting they are a fantastic (cheaper) option.  It also means getting a variety of types, so I indulged in some research to figure out what I had and what it would work as.  A quick google led me to realize that the Green Zebra would be a fantastic addition for a stew or a quinoa dish – and I was really craving some pasta.  This left me with some Cherokee  purple, yellow pear, and Virginia sweet all of which were perfect for the sauce I was hoping to create.  All I needed was to go to my herb garden and grab a handful of basil, and figure out where the missing vidalia onion was hiding.

Steal My Sunshine

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1/2 vidalia onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 lbs fresh tomatoes, cubed
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, diced
  • 1/4 tsp red chili flakes
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 lb angel hair pasta

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 7 minutes before adding the tomatoes. Cook the tomatoes for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to help break the tomatoes down. Add the basil along with the chili flakes and the pinch of salt. Cover and turn heat to low.
  2. Meanwhile bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the pasta. Cook the pasta until not quite al dente. Drain, rinse with cold water, and then add the pasta to the sauce.
  3. Stir the pasta in to the sauce, making sure to fully cover. Allow to simmer for a final 5 minutes.
  4. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

I used Barilla Plus angel hair but have used their Gluten Free line before with fantastic results - just adjust cooking time since GF takes longer to cook!

http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/09/steal-my-sunshine.html

By allowing the pasta to finish cooking in the sauce it was able to suck up every last drop of tomato goodness, and also gave the pasta a fantastic pink shade (this trick also works with gluten free pasta!).  Joe topped his with some cheese while I kept mine on the naked side, though as with any pasta dish there is no right or wrong.  The only important thing is to make sure all the sauce is fully enjoyed otherwise it’s a total sauce foul!

I’m also sending this over to Franglais Kitchen – where this month’s Simple and in Season is being hosted.   Also sending a HUGE thanks to Chocolates and Tomato Farm for growing and harvesting such tasty treats!

and Let Live

Taco Bowl

Taco Bowl

Greeting!  Today’s dish is what happens when you leave a crucial item off of a shopping list – in this case taco shells.  While I first debated attempting to make my own shells, I then realized a much safer option would be forgetting about the shells and going for the taco version of a burrito bowl.  I used the usual cast of characters when it came to the taco “filling” and then tossed it all with some rice for a simple bowl of delicious.   As an added bonus the jalapeno came from my own garden, tho sadly I can not claim the tomatoes since this year I only have the cherry variety going – but maybe next year!

and Let Live

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

  • 2 cups brown rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp cayenne powder
  • 1/2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 vidalia onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 large beefsteak tomato, diced
  • 2 cups presoaked black (or pinto) beans
  • 1/2 cup black olives, halved
  • 1/2 cup crushed tortilla chips (optional)

Instructions

  1. Soak the brown rice in the water for 25 minutes, set aside.
  2. While the rice is soaking heat the oil in a deep skillet over medium heat. Add the cumin and toast for 3 minutes before adding the remaining spices, cook for 2 minutes while stirring constantly.
  3. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes before adding the peppers. Cook for an additional 10 minutes, or until onion starts to brown. Add the tomato, beans, and olives and cook for 5 minutes stirring as needed to break up the tomato.
  4. Drain the rice then place in a sauce pan along with 3 cups of water. Bring to a quick boil, then turn hit to simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Fluff the rice and then add to the vegetable mixture along with any remaining water.
  5. Stir well and cook for a final 10 minutes. Add the crushed up chips and give everything a final stir.
  6. Serve and Enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/09/and-let-live.html

Sometimes it pays off to forget something as now I have a new quick dish that has all the taco taste – just minus the shells. Plus it uses up random scraps of food that might otherwise have been thrown away, which is a HUGE positive in my opinion.  The taco rice can be topped with avocado, sour cream, cheese, or salsa – whatever your taste buds desire!

Note: Saying extra prayers today for all the family and friends who lost loved ones in the horrible attacks 13 years ago.  I’ve written before about my own experience before here for anyone interested.

Be Unforgettable

Vegetable Pancit

Pancit

One thing I love about blog challenges is that they push me out of my comfort zone, on the flip side one thing I hate about blog challenges is how they push me out of my comfort zone.  When I saw the theme for /52weeksofcooking was Filipino I was once again thrown for a loop – but unlike other challenges were I was totally in the dark at least this time I had some friends who could help out.  After crowd sourcing ideas and recipes, I decided to make a vegetarian variation of Pancit – a dish I had heard of but never experienced.  Traditionally this dish features one of the white meats and while I debated adding tofu I decided to stick with the normal vegetables featured in the dish just in MUCH larger amounts.

Be Unforgettable

Serves: Serves 4-5

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 4 scallions, cut half way up the green
  • 1 vidalia onion, diced
  • 1 small head of broccoli, chopped
  • 1 lb napa cabbage, chopped
  • 1/2 lb red cabbage, chopped
  • 4 carrots, sliced
  • 1/2 lb thin rice noodles
  • 1 tbsp teriyaki sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce, low sodium

Instructions

  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a large work or sauce pan over medium heat. Add the garlic, onion, and white part of the scallions. Cook for 7 minutes, and then add the broccoli and carrots. Continue cooking for 5 minutes before slowly adding in the cabbage, being careful to not crowd the pan. Cook for 10 minutes, uncovered, stirring to prevent sticking.
  2. Meanwhile bring a pan of water to a boil and cook the rice noodles per instructions on bag (or box). Once cooked rinse with cold water and set aside.
  3. Add the cooked noodles to the vegetables and stir in the teriyaki, rice vinegar, and soy sauce. Toss well then top with the green part of the scallions.
  4. Serve and Enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/07/be-unforgettable.html

I was blown away but how flavorful this dish was, especially considering how quickly it came together.   Based on the fact he took his chopsticks directly to the pot I think it’s safe to say my other half also greatly enjoyed this dish!  Next time I might leave out the teriyaki sauce since the recipes I found online were rather split on including it – but it was a nice addition to the dish!   Looking forward to seeing where /52weeksofcooking sends me next!

Running to the Corner

Imam Bayildi (Stuffed Eggplant)

Turkish Stuffed Eggplant

Time for another installment of /52weeksofcooking – this time featuring a Turkish dish!  I’ve had Turkish food a few times, but I’ll be honest in that it’s not a regular cuisine in our house tho after making this eggplant dish that might have to change!  In order to figure out a recipe I searched the menu of a few local Turkish restaurants, to get an idea of what kind of vegetarian dishes were out there.  I saw so many different eggplant dishes – it was insane!  Now figuring out what kind of eggplant dish, that was a bit of a challenge.  I debated doing an appetizer I found called Saksuka but in the end decided it was too close to the Shakshuka dish I’ve already done – which defeats the purpose of this challenge.  So I decided to go with a stuffed eggplant dish, specifically Imam Bayildi.  This dish features eggplant, tomatoes, onion, and garlic in addition to HUGE amounts of olive oil.

Running to the Corner

Serves: Serves 3-4

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 medium eggplant, halved length wise
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 medium vidalia onion, diced
  • 3 roma tomatoes
  • 1/4 tsp fresh pepper
  • 3 oz hard sheep cheese (or daiya), optional

Instructions

  1. Fill a large pot up with salt water and add the eggplant. Allow the eggplant to soak for 15 minutes
  2. Preheat oven to 425 and coat a roasting pan with 2 tbsp of the olive oil. Remove the eggplant from the salt bath, rinse, and lightly pat down with a paper towel before placing flesh down on the roasting pan. Roast for 40 minutes. Remove, cut a slit down the middle (being careful to not go thru the ends of the bottom), then set aside. Turn oven down to 375
  3. Meanwhile heat the remaining olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and cook for 7-10 minutes, or until garlic is golden. Add the diced tomatoes, then cover and allow the tomatoes to breakdown - check after 10 minutes. Use a wooden spoon to help the process as needed.
  4. Carefully squeeze the ends of the eggplant to create a pocket from the cut slit, gently stuff the onion and tomato mixture inside. Top with slices of cheese (optional) then place back in the oven and bake for a final 20 minutes.
  5. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then serve and Enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/06/running-to-the-corner.html

With our 4 eggplant sections I did half with the cheese and half without and for once Joe preferred the cheese-less option while I went for the cheesy ones!  It’s not your normal cheese, and I think that’s part of the reason I enjoyed it – the texture actually reminded me of daiya.  With that said, Daiya would make a great option for this and would probably go for a non-meltable in order to recreate the firmer texture this cheese had as the contrast was rather nice.  Of course there is nothing wrong with going totally naked in the cheese department – gotta love flexible dishes!  I served this up with some garlicky green beans and had planned to include some lentils but in the end decided there was already enough going on.  In the future I might include some pre-cooked lentils in the eggplant stuffing in order to “beef” them up – again with the flexibility :-D

In the Real World

Corn Bisque with Avocado

Corn Bisque

Good morning (evening???) and welcome to June’s installment of the Secret Recipe Club!!!  I have to say being a member of Group A means that my blogging month always starts off with a bang in the flavor department – and I wouldn’t have it any other way.  This month I was partnered up with the Cookaholic Wife, and after reading her about page it turns out we have a lot in common.  We were both married in 2010, we’re both on the verge of turning 30 (eeek!), and we both live in Baltimore :-D For an added chill, you can switch our anniversary and birth months since we’re virgos that got married in April – so needless to say  I think Nicole is rather awesome.   Her blog is also stuffed to the rim with delicious recipes featuring ingredients that are easy to locate – but since we’re in the same city that does make a bit of sense.   I first debated making her Onion Dip, as a tribute to the crap dip that got her started on the blogging path, but I could not get the idea of her Corn Bisque out of my head.   Corn chowders are one of my favorite winter soups and the idea of a light and springy corn soup just spoke to my belly on a deep level.   I did make a few in changes to the recipe to cut back on cholesterol (yes, sometimes I do listen to my doctor) but for a more authentic experience just switch the almond milk back to regular milk!  Using the yogurt in place of the half-and-half also allowed me to leave out the cornstarch as the soup was plenty thick!

In the Real World

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

  • 5 medium ears corn on the cob
  • 1 small vidalia onion, chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/4 cup Greek Yogurt, almond milk
  • 1/4 cup almond milk, original flavor
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • pinch of crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 avocado, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. fresh basil, chopped

Instructions

  1. Slice the kernels off each corn cob and set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 3-4 minutes then the garlic and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes. The garlic and onion should be slightly golden.
  3. Pour the vegetable stock in to into the pot and add the corn kernels. Bring to a quick boil and then reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 5-7 minutes.
  4. Use an immersion blender to process the soup, adding the milk and Greek yogurt at about the halfway point. Continue to heat over very low heat for a final 10 minutes.
  5. Serve the soup topped with the diced avocado and enjoy!
http://www.dancingveggies.com/blog/2014/06/in-the-real-world.html

 I did leave the crab out but I’m happy to report that my hubby added enough Old Bay to his to counter the lack of crab.  The avocado provided the perfect contrast to the airy soup, and I’m now curious to see how I can include that in my winter chowder.

This soup was perfection and I can easily see myself making it time and time again – thanks Nicole!!!