Back to a full week of cooking! I didn’t plan it this way, but looking at the photos I guess it’s bowl food galore.
This Thai red curry soup was extremely spicy (my preference, I always go a bit heavier with the curry paste than the recipes call for) but wasn’t overwhelming, thanks to the creamy flavor of the coconut milk. If you prefer less spice, you’d be safe with the 3 tablespoons of curry paste the recipe calls for, and two tablespoons would be only a hint of flavor, I think. I also used rice vermicelli noodles per the photo on the site, even though the recipe doesn’t specify.
I turned this Tex Mex Tofu Quinoa Bowl into a salad by putting it over lettuce. Can you tell I had food styling help on this one? 😉
This one pot cabbage casserole may not look like much, but it’s got all the flavor of cabbage rolls with none of the work. Of course, we used fresh tomatoes instead of canned diced tomatoes, so some chopping was involved, but this is still one of my favorite easy recipes and it uses up half a head of cabbage!
I was able to use up several of my veggies and make a meat free, one pot dinner with this lentil salad. (I may have served this with fish, too!) I find the key to this recipe is really tasting the salad and adding vinegar to balance the flavor of mint, earthy lentils, sweet carrots and roasted peppers, and salty cheese. I just should have drained them a lot better to make them less soggy!
This Instant Pot Jambalaya is pictured immediately before I drowned it in hot sauce. There is lots of prep work and chopping for this recipe, but the actual cooking method couldn’t be easier. I used a tablespoon of Cajun seasoning but it definitely could have used more. I added sliced okra right before I cooked it under pressure and thought the texture was perfect. (I have never experienced the burn error this recipe warns you about.)
We didn’t cook much at the beach, but I did manage to use up a few things.
- Pasta with sausage and dandelion greens (adds a bit more bite than the chard this recipe calls for, and I use whatever pasta I have on hand)
- Grilled eggplant risotto, not what you’d think of as a traditional beach meal, but great on a stormy evening with some fresh scallops
- Grilled corn, either slathered with mayo, feta, and a squeeze of lime to echo Mexican flavors, or with good old fashioned butter
I’m planning to cut the rest of the corn off the cobs and freeze it for use in soup or chicken chili later this fall or winter.
I also let those cayenne peppers turn red on the counter, then I finally dehydrated them and pulsed them in the food processor to make red pepper flakes. I didn’t use the good appliance, so the size of the flakes is a bit inconsistent, but they are definitely potent!
To make this week, I’ve planned ways to use peppers, peppers, and more peppers
I spent Week 16 at the beach and didn’t take pictures of what we made, so it’s a combo list this time around!
- Canary Melon
- Little Sweetie Cantaloupe
- Orange Seedless Watermelon
- Bicolor Sweet Corn
- Green Dandelion
- Italian Eggplant
- Mixed Sweet Peppers
- Red Grape Tomatoes
- Yellow Tomatoes
- Red Okra
Clockwise from left: Red Leaf Lettuce, Yukon Gold Potatoes, Yellow Seedless Watermelon, Green Cabbage, Canary Melon, Bicolor Sweet Corn, Green Bell Peppers, Red Radishes, Bartlett Pears, Red Grape Tomatoes, Orange Carrots
These vegetables have given me a chance to try lots of new things, but for this recipe I stepped way outside of my comfort zone and tried making risotto for the first time. It wasn’t my finest effort, but even imperfect risotto is still tasty, creamy rice and cheese. This one includes scarlet turnips, which gives the whole dish a pink tint, contrasting with the heaping addition of sautéed green leeks.
As the days got cooler, I really looked forward to these leftovers in my fridge. I also greatly improved my risotto technique – it pays in off recipes to be posted later! However, in the meantime, here’s the first attempt.
Leeks, turnips, and garlic are sautéed in olive oil until tender. Then, the rice is briefly toasted with the mixture. Next comes hard work and patience: broth is added 1/2 cup at a time and the mixture is stirred constantly. This will take about 45 minutes and if you’re as out of shape as I am, your shoulder and arm will be ACHING. Once the rice is cooked through and a creamy texture, stir in the cheese and serve! More detailed instructions are after the jump.
I got a lot of bok choy and baby bok choy in my basket this year, which was great because it’s a green that is easy to use in stir fries and soups. In this recipe, I tried something new with baby bok choy and sautéed it whole.
Heat oil, and quickly stir fry garlic and green onions. Separate the larger outside leaves from the inner “core”, which can be left whole, and add to the pan. Cover the pan and let the bok choy steam for about 3 minutes, then cook with the cover off for another minute or two to let any extra water boil off. Not only is this veggie ready in under 10 minutes, serving the whole bok choy looks like it took way more effort than was actually required. That’s all there is to it, but if you want more details, click to read more.
Sautéed bok choy, with fried tofu and cellphone noodles.
Although this recipe is a one pot meal, it does require a bit of preparation because of all the ingredients that need to be chopped. The upside is that this recipe is widely customizable. Got some vegetables you need to get rid of? Toss them in! Just don’t make the mistake that I did a try to use pre-cooked noodles. This makes a soggy mess. Instead, cook them as part of the recipe. Click “Read More” to see full directions.
Sometimes, I have a brilliant flash of inspiration for a recipe, but then I search Pinterest and find out that someone has already invented and perfected the very same dish. With the abundance of young kale I had this week, I thought I was a genius for substituting kale instead of spinach in eggs florentine for a fancy brunch. Turns out, someone else had invented that. So I gave it a cute name and moved on. Presenting: eggs kalentine.
In practice, it’s much less fancy than its name. Sauté some chopped garlic and onion. Add baby kale and cook down, seasoning the mixture with salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes to taste. Put this mixture on a toasted English muffin and top with a poached egg.
PS. If you are completely mystified by poaching eggs like I was, I recommend this video by America’s Test Kitchen for the traditional method or these instructions for poached eggs in a muffin tin.
Do you ever long for a recipe where you mix all the ingredients and then forget about it in the fridge for a while? These icebox pickled banana peppers are for you. Great on salads, sandwiches, and pizzas, this is a six ingredient recipe for pickled peppers that are not too hot, but with the right amount of bite. The flavor develops with time in the chiller, so don’t worry about using them all at once.
Slice up peppers to your desired thickness and mince a clove of garlic. Dump them into a glass jar with a tight fitting lid. In a pan, heat water and vinegar, and heat just until sugar and salt are dissolved. Pour liquid over peppers and garlic and after the jar has cooled, chill in the fridge for at least 24 hours.
Pickled peppers pre-refrigeration.