Tag Archives: recipe

Peppers stuffed with spaghetti? This one I just made up.

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We had three green bell peppers that we needed to use up. So at the grocery store, I thought about making pasta with peppers in the sauce. Then I thought, what about stuffing the peppers with the pasta instead? The pasta that caught my eye was really cool. It’s like spaghettaroni, a long hollow tube.

This dish is fairly healthful and quite simple to make. Just clean and boil the peppers, and boil the pasta. I also finely chopped half an onion, another half pepper, and a carrot (cleaned out the crisper) and cooked these in a cast iron. Then I mixed a package of soft tofu with a quarter pound of ricotta cheese and added an herb that smelled Italian (it was unlabeled in a bag from the bulk section). When I’ve served dishes (lasagna, baked spaghetti, etc) with this tofu/cheese mixture, people never guess it’s tofu and not all ricotta cheese. So it saves a lot of calories and tastes great too.

After I drained the pasta, I added it to the tofu/cheese mixture, then included the cooked onion/pepper/carrot.

I messily overfilled the peppers with this pasta mixture.

As usual, I made too much of the stuffing, so I just put the extras all around the sides of the peppers. I topped it all with a jar of pasta sauce and used my new rotary grater to put a bit of shredded Asiago on top. Then I baked it for about half an hour.

After dinner, I was stuffed!

Mexican Inspired Skillet

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We had some rice to use up, and the only produce left was some onion, tomato, sweet baby peppers, and bits of lettuce. So I put it all together.

First, I cut up the onion and cooked them in a cast iron with oil. When the onions were glassy, I added turmeric and cayenne, and some cooked rice. Then a can of pinto beans. After a few minutes, I added salt and chopped tomatoes.

I served it with a sliced adorable sweet baby pepper and a bit of lettuce. Super easy, super good!

Yuba Delight

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It was my intent to have a Japanese inspired vegan feast.

But not everything I assembled ended up making it into the dinner. The dried rice cakes will have to wait until next time. The bubble tea I planned to make turned into serving fresh blueberries, and apparently you don’t prepare tapioca pearls by boiling them unless you intend to make a gummy shapeless mess. I also didn’t use the rice vinegar.

So I’ll start with the star of the show- Yuba Rolls! Here are instructions you can use to make them yourself, but I can’t help you if you can’t find the yuba.

First, cut the carrots and shred the shittakes, then fry them together until only partly softened.

Then fry green beans for just a few minutes. Lay out a yuba sheet. If they stick together or are hard, rinse them under water, then pat them dry. Mix some maple syrup with soy sauce and water. Brush a little of this onto the yuba. Put the green beans and carrots next to each other and roll it up.

Do the same thing, but put the first rolled up yuba roll inside this second roll! Then do that again, with this second larger roll going into the third roll! Then, roll the third roll into the fourth along with the green beans and carrots every time.

There were 8 sheets in my yuba pack, so I used 4 sheets for each final roll.

Then fry them for about 5 minutes per side like a grilled burrito. After that, put a little water in the pan and cover it to steam them. Keep that up until the water is gone.

Serve on a fancy plate with a basil leaf.

While I was preparing these, I also made a stir fry by combining finely chopped sweet onion with quartered green Thai eggplant (the little round ones). Add some hot chili oil. I fried it for a few minutes then covered it and forgot about it while working on the yuba rolls. Once it was almost done, I added tofu. My plan was to add the, what I thought at the store was bok choy, but was actually mustard greens.

I cooked the mustard greens separately in a cast iron in order to cook them down enough to fit with the eggplant/tofu. It didn’t seem like it would fit, so I added hoison sauce and tamarind paste to it.

I added basil to the tofu/eggplant.

I served it all on fancy plates with a side of blueberries.

It all turned out better than expected, and that’s even with the colds my husband and I have that makes it difficult for us to taste much.

The yuba wasn’t salty at all! It barely had any flavor, but it was really easy to work with. Much easier than spring roll wrappers, and about as easy as a large flour tortilla. I would definitely make yuba rolls again!

Toast Francais

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Ingredients gathered for a lovely breakfast for two. I always take everything that I will need out first and put it on the counter. This is especially important for baking. I learned the hard way when I went to add dry ingredients into cookie batter, and stopped, thinking, Really? I’m out of flour? How did that happen? Plus it makes for a nice photo op. French toast is amazingly easy and impressive to make. I suggest more people make it more often. I sliced some raisin challah from Breadsmith and some strawberries. These were strawberries that didn’t go into the bubble tea from green curry night.

I beat two eggs and added little pour of peach juice. Then I dipped each  bread slice in the egg mixture and then into some sliced almonds, making them stick on both sides. I first read a recipe for french toast with sliced almonds in the newspaper. It was for a mother’s day breakfast, and I made it for my mom one of the first times she came to visit me in Chicago. Now that I am older, I can begin to imagine how she felt when I told her I was moving out two weeks after I graduated high school. As a kid, I always felt older than I really was. Even at age 7, I would go into a store or restaurant, and I truly thought if I stood straight and spoke matter-of-factly, the shop owners would think I was an adult. At 14, I was surprised to get carded for cigarettes. My outside appearance didn’t match how I thought I presented myself. This is not to say I actually reasoned or had the maturity of an adult. But I was a serious, not super playful child who planned to move out on my own as soon as legally possible. But I still like when my parents visit, and try to make things special. So that’s what I was thinking about when I let the french toast sizzle on the griddle.

To go with this breakfast, I fried two eggs and included the strawberries on the side. In total, the preparation was probably fifteen minutes, but it was a lovely breakfast for my husband and me. And the next time my mom visits, I will gladly make it again.

Stuffed Squash

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Due to a very busy week, I am posting about a delicious dinner I made several days ago. It was Indian inspired squash stuffed with quinoa, carrots, onions, and zucchini, and here is how you can also make this healthy and filling fall comfort food.

First, split some acorn squash lengthwise and clean out the seeds. Put the squash in the oven along with the seeds. The squash can be in a casserole dish, and the seeds should be on a baking sheet with salt, oil, and cumin. Roast at 400 degrees until the seeds start popping (About 15-20 mins). (You can stir them after 10 minutes or so).

While they are in the oven, put 1 cup of quinoa and 2 cups of water on to boil with some cardamom in the pot.

When it starts to boil, turn it on low until its done, then turn it off.

Chop onions, and place them in a heated skillet. While they are cooking, chop carrots and throw them in the skillet, and while they are cooking, do the same with zucchini.

When the seeds are roasty toasty, pull them out, let them cool off for a minute, and have a snack. Make sure to save at least a couple of tablespoons for garnish. The squash should still be in the oven.

The onion, carrot, zucchini mixture should be almost cooked through. Season with salt, cumin, cardamom, and turmeric. Add the finished quinoa and stir it all together.

Pull the squash out of the oven, and make sure it’s tender. Once it is (45+ minutes) fill it up with the stuffing stuff. Top with toasted seeds. Bake for about 15 more minutes and enjoy!

(I served this with sliced radish and gypsy pepper salad with orange champagne vinegar dressing. 3 ingredients- sliced radishes, cut up peppers, and orange muscat champagne vinegar from Trader Joe’s.)