The Story is Cooked!

Monday, July 08, 2013

Jamaican Red Bean Soup

I made this Jamaican Red Bean Soup. It was really good. You should make it, too. And I actually followed the recipe (if scallions = Vidalia onions, red pepper flakes = cayenne pepper, and measurements are a general idea). Also, Judah liked it, though he did think it required a sip of milk after every bite. We're working on de-wimpifying him--it's a process.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Spicy Peanut Noodles

We had a potluck at church this past Sunday, and since it was Pentecost, we decided to take spicy food. We've been making peanut sauce for steamed vegetables for awhile, but haven't written about it (since we haven't written at all in...years). I made some lo mein noodles, some peanut sauce, and some steamed vegetables as follows:

Ok, I'm not actually going to tell you how to boil lo mein noodles--just read the directions on the package. Yes, I am advocating following directions in this instance.

Peanut Sauce (usual recipe)
1/4-1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 Tbsp sesame oil
some ginger
some garlic
3 Tbsp (at least) peanut butter (chunky or creamy)
some Sriracha chili sauce (depending on your heat tolerance levels)

Stir together on lowish heat until the peanut butter is melted and everything is mixed nicely.

I thought we didn't have any sesame oil, so instead of sesame oil, per Ryan's suggestion, I heated some canola oil in the pan and then dumped in a lot of black sesame seeds and stirred for several minutes until they seemed toasty. Then I added the rest of the peanut sauce ingredients, and when it was done, I added the now-boiled lo mein noodles and transferred everything to a big bowl.

While making the peanut sauce, I steamed carrots and broccoli for 10 minutes. After 5 of those minutes, I added some red bell pepper strips. After 2 more minutes, I added a large handful of sugar snap peas. When the vegetables were done, I mixed them into the noodles and added some green onions.

We usually eat things like this hot, but since it's hard to keep food warm at church through the entire service, we stuck this in the fridge and served it cold. I liked it cold; Ryan wasn't convinced.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Black Bean and Corn Salad

Apparently, we post in August these days. Oops. Anyway, we have now made a black bean and corn salad twice, and we like it a lot. I made it up based on a similar salad I had when we were at MathFest this year (except that one had cilantro in it, and I despise cilantro. If you like cilantro, you should probably add it to your salad. Unless you're going to feed your salad to me or anyone else who can't stand cilantro. Then have a heart, and don't send us home with a metallic soapy taste in our mouths). So, anyway, here's somewhat of a recipe (when I say I made this up, I'm serious, so of course I didn't measure):

some cans of black beans, rinsed (number depends on size of group you're serving)
some corn (the better the corn, the better the salad), cooked/unfrozen
some onions, chopped (browned if you're like me and have trouble with raw onions)
some green and/or red peppers, chopped (or another color; these can be browned with
the onions if you so desire)
some tomato, chopped
juice of a lemon or lime (or more than one, depending on how much of the previous
ingredients you're using)
some olive oil (as in, a few tablespoons)
some vinegar (I've been using white--probably 1/8-1/4 cup)
some cumin
some garlic powder or pressed garlic if you want it stronger
some cayenne pepper
some salt

Mix all the dressing-type ingredients together and pour on top of the other ingredients. Mix well; refrigerate for a few hours before serving.

If you like spicy (we do, in case you weren't aware), I think some jalapeños or jalapeño juice would be a nice addition. Of course, I forgot that I think that this morning when we were making the salad. Green onions could work, too, as could jalapeño-pickled carrots.

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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Curried Chickpea Salad

We went to a restaurant in Angelica for lunch on my birthday and had a curried chickpea wrap. We both liked it but agreed that we should be able to make it better at home. Tonight we had our first attempt based on this recipe, but because I didn't want to waste the good ingredients in case we didn't like it, we halved the recipe. Also,
we had no limes, so we used lemon juice;
we had no olive oil, so we used just a tiny bit of vegetable oil;
we had no maple syrup, so we used honey;
we had no cumin seeds, so we used ground cumin;
we had no raisins, so we used dried apricots;
we had no red pepper, so we used green;
we had no red onions, so we used Vidalia*;
we had no fresh parsley**, so we used a bit of dried parsley;
we had no pitas, so we used homemade bread;
and we had no mixed greens, so we used red leaf lettuce.

I feel like this is some children's book about curried chickpea salad during the Great Depression.

By the way, we liked this a lot. Probably a new staple. Oh, and we added carrots and put toasted almonds on top.

*which for some reason were cheaper at Wegmans than yellow onions were.
**or cilantro, but there will never be cilantro in my mouth voluntarily if I'm in charge of cooking.

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Saturday, August 22, 2009

Western New York Food Lament

We survived our move, but we don't remember what we used to eat and we're having trouble procuring items we think are necessary (read: good tortillas and salsa and reasonably-priced bread flour). We now live at least 1/2 hour from any grocery store of consequence, we have an electric stove, and it's humid here--bread molds instead of going stale (so no excuse to make croutons) and cookies do not get better when they are left on the cooling rack overnight. We also fell out of the habit of planning our meals by the week (which we never reported here, but was really helpful). All in all, we're a bit food discombobulated. On the good side, there are tons of produce roadside stands, every tiny town (it seems) has at least one pizza, wings, and sub shop (which may be located in the gas station), and we bought a chest freezer before we left Missoula so we can stock up more easily when we make the pilgrimage to the good grocery store.

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Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Onion and Garlic Rolls

We have a ton of onions and garlic (it's a figurative ton, but I think it might actually be a garlic ton and an onion ton if we define those as new units of measurement), so when we volunteered to provide the bread for our Thanksgiving dinner with the Makis, Ryan thought it would be a good idea to make onion and garlic bread. At least, that's what I thought he thought; he apparently thought it was my idea and I had a specific recipe in mind. After much internet searching, we based our rolls on this recipe. Of course, we didn't follow it exactly: we used 1 cup of wheat flour instead of all bread flour, chopped and pre-toasted (as in, toasted before putting in with the other ingredients) an entire (small--maybe 2 in. in diameter) onion, threw in some roasted garlic, used a lot more cheese (well, maybe twice as much), and of course only let the bread machine do the mixing and kneading and rolled the rolls ourselves. I think we baked them at 350 for 20-25 minutes. No one could taste the cheese, but the onions and garlic were detectable without being overwhelming (I was afraid they would be way too much).

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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Super Mustard Cheese Fondue

We had another evening of When Do I Get A Brownie? last night, complete with much hilarity, brownies, ice cream, and other snacks. One such snack I shall call "Super Mustard Cheese Fondue." We had some leftover bread from lunch with our small group yesterday and we had cheese, of course, so I decided that cheese fondue sounded excellent. I proceeded to search the internet for cheese fondue recipes, became impatient with finding a recipe for which we actually had everything, and decided to make up my own based very loosely on multiple recipes (big surprise--Rebekah's not following a recipe!). So I threw some cream cheese (probably about 3 ounces), some grated cheddar cheese (about 1 cup), some whole milk (we had whole milk because we were going to make ice cream to go on top of the brownies; I'm not even sure I want to attempt to give an amount--maybe 1/4-1/3 cup?), some white wine (could've been around two tablespoons), and some dry mustard powder (1 tsp? 1.5 tsps? hard to say) into the Little Dipper, covered it, and plugged it in. A little later I stirred it, added more cheddar--whatever amount fit, and mentioned to Ryan that some recipes I saw called for Worchestershire sauce. We are now the proud owners of a bottle of Worchestershire sauce which we have used precisely once (aha! I can give a definitive measurement in this post. Don't worry, there won't be any more) since purchasing it at least a month ago, so Ryan said that it could give the fondue a mysterious nutty flavor--sufficient encouragement for me to add some (3-4 dashes). Then I put the lid back on and let it all melt together, stirring occasionally--the stirring was more so I could taste it than because it was necessary. I cut the bread up into cubes and also cut some red pepper slices and carrot sticks for dippers. It was apparently a good fondue if you like mustard (or even if you only slightly like mustard), but I thought it was disgusting. Everybody else liked it, though, so I thought I should probably record this for all the mustard lovers out there. Personally, I love cheese. I was sorely disappointed.

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