Monday, April 28, 2008

first step bean salad, second step freedom

Do you ever wander around campus (or, if you have graduated, 'the real world'), wishing that you could find something that was tasty yet healthy, crisp but not deep-fried, and cheap? And then, do you accidentally wander into Caferama and accidentally order one of their bean salads thinking how good it could be, only to be deeply disappointed and unhappy because it is none of the above? Although Caferama will soon lose its spot in the SSMU building to some other uninteresting and overpriced chain, the dilemmas posed transcend this specific merchant of unsatisfying food.

Making your own bean salad, and carrying it around with you in a tupperware for all occasions, so long as it is occasionally refrigerated, is a good solution to all of these problems. Although not to the more systemic ones of corporate control and rampant capitalism and poverty wages and world food 'crisis.' But eating (and sharing!) a good homemade lunch is a way to start.

To set off on the path towards utopian living, via the creatively titled "Bean Salad," you will need to accumulate and mix together in a bowl:

1 can of black beans (or you can soak but I don't know proportions)
1 can of corn kernels (or you can use fresh corn in the summer!)
2 bell peppers, diced, perhaps a red and an orange?
a bunch of green onions, sliced
about 1/2 a cup of cilantro, chopped
1/2 a block feta, crumbled
1/2 cup wild rice (when cooked this makes between 1 and a half cups)
1ish tablespoon ginger, grated

When all of this is in a bowl, throw (or pour) on some olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Toss. Turn. Ideally, refrigerate for half an hour but it will not be tragic if you can't. Eat.

Bonus points: beans and corn, eaten together, form a complete protein!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Moros y cristianos


The handing over of the keys of Granada to Ferdinand and Isabella by the defeated Baobdil. "It is every Granadine's fave," says the BH.

Moros y cristianos
aka racist rice and beans
c/o Joy of Cooking/Spain

olive oil
1 cup chopped onions
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 chili pepper or red pepper flakes
1 cup diced tomato or can of tomatoes
2 1/2 cups water
1 cup rice
1 tsp salt
2 cups canned black beans or 2/3 cup dried

To cook beans: soak overnight, simmer 30 min.

Heat olive oil over medium in a medium pot. Add onion, garlic, chili and cook 5-8 min or until tender. Stir in tomato, water, rice salt. Bring to a boil. Add black beans and reduce heat to simmer for 20 min. or until rice is tender and water absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand 10 min. covered.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

cranapple walnut cake (find your inner spice!)


dismiss your thoughts of moldy shower curtains, this cake is danky and moist in the best possible way.

350 degrees (beat the pre-heat only for the pros)
9 by 13 greased pan, or really whatever you have that will fit the batter.
the recipe says 45-50 minutes to bake but i found this to be a dirty lie, allot like an hour (one efficiently watched episode of the L word and a southpark)

put on some cee-lo and mix it right up:
1 3/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla

combine in another bowl and then add to the wet mixture:
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp salt

add:
2 cups slice apples
1/2 walnut pieces
1/2 lb. fresh, whole, raw cranberries (though really who knows what half a pound is. i know i misread this section and added half a cup. no lasting damage, though if your UTI is acting up, best ditch the cup for the pound. oh man homeopathic baking, our ticket to fame!)

i think that during the course of this baking adventure, i decided that if i could be a spice, i would be nutmeg. perhaps if you do peyote and flip through a cookbook you too will find your inner spice. not that that's what i did. seriously.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Orecchiette with Spinach


Dear culinary hopefuls,

It has come to my attention that the Gosky Patties recipe was somewhat difficult to execute (common problems included runaway pigs, inability to locate adequate amounts of foolscap, concerns about animal rights violations). I do apologize.

Perhaps this is a better way to improve library-confinement: a quick & iron-heavy pasta concoction that even tastes good cold & out of a tupperware!

You will need:

400-500g of scoop-shaped pasta – e.g. orecchiette or gnocco sardo
16 to 20 oz baby spinach – no need to chop
1/3 cup olive oil
1.5 -2 shallots finely chopped (although the same amount of onions works as well)
1/2 teaspoon crushed dried hot red chillies
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese (at least!)
Cook pasta in a large pot of salted water till al dente – do not overcook, because the pasta will cook a little more when you mix it into the hot oil at the end. About 2 minutes before you figure that the pasta is done, stir the spinach into the pot of pasta (contrary to appearances, it will all fit in). Drain pasta and spinach when done.
Heat oil in large pan over medium-low heat. Cook shallot and chili flakes till soft but not brown (~3 minutes).
Add pasta and spinach to hot oil and mix well. Season with salt, and add grated Parmesan to taste.
(Courtesy of Fresh Ways with Pasta and my mother)

holy crap - chocolate yumms! or, 'i'm such a flake i don't want to bake'


That's right folks, no-bake cookies that are delicious, nutricious and perfect for the impending warmth.

These are a one-pot taste explosion and as if you even needed it, there is the added bonus: they are especially delicious when made with spelt, so they are almost guilt-free (save for the butter...)

In a pot, bring to a boil:

1/2 cup butter

2 cups sugar (less if you are using a sugary cereal or sweetened coconut flakes)

1/2 cup milk

Once you have brought this to a boil, remove from heat and add:

3 tbsp cocoa powder

2-2.5* cups oatmeal OR spelt (spelt is crunchier and thus more delicious, but its your call)

0.5-1* cup crumbled special K/rice krispies

0.5 cup coconut flakes

Vanilla

*vary these amounts as necessary until you get a mixture that is thick enough to make into cookies

drop these cookies onto a greased baking sheet and put in the fridge for 1-2 hours, or as long as you can resist them. do not "pull a beeks" and put them into unlined muffin tins, or they will come out looking gross to say the least. Once they are set, they are ready to be devoured.

the inaugural run of nutter butters, inc.

dear friends,

here is, get this, an ORIGINAL recipe that has come from my blossoming new passion for nut butters. i call this one mystery butter #1: what i did instead of kicking someone in the shins (a la waitress movie).

get a whole bunch (ie. maybe a cup) of raw peanuts, half a cup of raw shelled pistachios, and about 6 squares of dark chocolate (55% or higher, HOLLA), and raw honey (or whatever you got). preheat the oven to 300, roast the nuts until slightly browned and fragrant, about 6 minutes. then, in a food processor, combine all ingredients and honey to test, blend blend BLEND until smooth and delicious (this should take about 10 minutes or so).

put it in your favourite small jar, and if you're not going to eat it imminently, store it in the fridge for a couple of weeks.

happy buttering!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Lentils, Apples, Cumin, Salad

After getting an extension on my Gulag paper, I was feeling invigorated, and thought that with a little more protein, I could go from good to great. Also good, lentils are a great lunch to bring to the library. So, I made this recipe off of chocolate&zuchinni.

All was going well, I even got creative and sauteed the tofu with the dressing which she doesn't recommend but really brings it all together. Then, disaster struck.

I went to taste the fruits (or legumes) of my labour, and it tasted like black licorice. Confused, I added more balsamic vinegar. Still nothing. Like Sherlock Holmes, I began to put the pieces together. I won't go through the clues and red herrings, but the verdict was that I had confused cumin seeds with fennel seeds. DISASTER.

The moral? During exams/paper season, be sure to read all of your labels carefully and not get cocky and think that you can tell your spices by sight. Cumin and fennel mix-ups are bad, but paprika and cinnamon would be way worse. STAY SAFE, and read the label.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Victorian Nonsense, Animal Cruelty: the Solution to End-of-Semester Bitterness?


Edward Lear, famed 19th century master of nonsense was not only responsible for popularizing the limerick form and writing such poetic staples as "The Owl and the Pussycat" - he was also well-versed (har har) in the art of Nonsense Cookery.

Nothing like some Gosky Patties to quench the terrible hunger of paper-writing:

Take a Pig, three or four years of age, and tie him by the off-hind leg to a post. Place 5 pounds of currants, 3 of sugar, 2 pecks of peas, 18 roast chestnuts, a candle, six bushels of turnips, within his reach; if he eats these, constantly provide him with some more.
Then procure some cream, some slices of Cheshire cheese, four quires of foolscap paper, and a packet of black pins. Work the whole into a paste, and spread it out to dry on a sheet of clean brown waterproof linen.
When the paste is perfectly dry, but not before, proceed to beat the Pig violently, with the handle of a large broom. If he squeals, beat him again.
Visit the paste and beat the Pig alternately for some days, and ascertain if at the end of that period the whole is about to turn into Gosky Patties.
If it does not then, it never will; and in that case the Pig may be let loose, and the whole process may be considered as finished.


- Lear, Edward. A Book of Nonsense. Alfred A. Knopf, New York: 1992.

fit for the king's son


the key to any gratin dauphinois is a golden crust--in 17th century France the golden crust of a gratin signified the "upper crust" of Parisian society.

in this recipe, the golden crust, made mostly of expensive cheese (rich and fatty), rests comfortably atop a hoi polloi of steamed vegetables (simple and cheap). clearly the structure of this recipe manifests the socio-economic structure of the feudal society from which it emerged.

Vegetable Gratin-Souffle

do this:

procure:
butter for the dish
3 cups vegetables, cut into 1-inch pieces (cauliflower, turnip, broccoli, zucchini or anything that tickles your absent center)
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup milk
1/2 small onion or 2 large shallots, finely diced
1/2 cup grated Gruyere
2 eggs, separated
salt and pepper
pinch grated nutmeg

pre-heat oven to 375 and lightly butter an 8 by 10 inch gratin dish. steam or parboil the vegetables until barely tender when pierced with a knife. drain, rinse under cold water, then finely chop them.
lightly brown the bread crumbs in two tablespoons butter in a small saucepan, then stir in the milk. when it's hot to the touch, turn off the heat. meanwhile, cook the onion in the remaining butter in a small skillet over medium heat until translucent, about three minutes. Combine the onion, vegetables, and bread crumb mixture in a bowl, then stir in the cheese and egg yolks. season with salt and power to taste and the nutmeg. beat the whites until stiff, then fold them into the mixture. pour into the prepared dish and bake until puffed and browned, about 25 minutes.
serve immediately.
i served it with a citrus-avocado salad--the freshness of the salad complimented the rich gratin very nicely.

thank you deborah maidson.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

HEALTH ALERT and a smoothie suggestion

Hi everyone,

I was browsing the good old NYT when I came across this article about the (sometimes fatal) risks of blogging/being a blogger.

Some excerpts:

They work long hours, often to exhaustion... This is the digital-era sweatshop. You may know it by a different name: home.
Bloggers complain of weight loss or gain, sleep disorders, exhaustion and other maladies born of the nonstop strain of producing for a news and information cycle that is as always-on as the Internet.

“If I don’t hear from him, I’ll think: Matt’s passed out again,” said Brian Lam, the editor of Gizmodo. “It’s happened four or five times.”


Mr. Lam... is known to pull all-nighters at his own home office in San Francisco — hours spent trying to keep his site organized and competitive. He said he was well equipped for the torture; he used to be a Thai-style boxer.
Should we disallow posting between midnight and eight am to promote a healthier work environment for ourselves? And, maybe we should join a gym or something?

A quick, refreshing and nutrient packed smoothie that could help you to keep on keeping on while blogging, or pursuing any other interests.

Locate and put into a blender:

1/2 a block of silky tofu
tip: it can come unflavoured, or you can choose mango or coconut or mixed berries or anything you could ever dream of
1 banana, in chunks
1/2 to 1 cup of frozen berries
tip: I prefer blueberries, but rasberries, mixed berries, any other kind of fruit work just fine, though I would probably stay away from pineapple
tip: frozen berries are good because it's like adding ice and fruit at once, which gives it a frothy texture. if you are lucky enough to have on hand fresh berries, throw them in the blender and add ice as well
enough orange juice to cover everything in the blender
tip: if you only have concentrate, you can plop some in and add water straight to the blender, it will all come together in the next step which is............

turn on the blender. keep it on until everything seems to have blended. try a little. adjust. feel free to blend to the rhythm of your favourite song. it may annoy other people in the vicinity, but they will be grateful because this recipe makes 2-3 tall glasses of smoothie, and you might be willing to share.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Easy Bake Tofu

http://cultureofsoccer.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/04/ahmadinejad_soccer.jpg


Addendum: Tofu Your Way Into Mahmoud's Heart
According to Japanese-Food-for-Health.com, "many people dislike tofu." Mahmoud is not one of these people. When in training season, Mahmoud likes to wake up to a hearty breakfast of tofu scramble, have some salacious sweet and sour tofu for lunch, skip dinner, and order a glass of tofu straight up with an olive for a night cap. This is his secret--the key to his vitality, sex appeal, and what the New York Times once called his "ever-so-appealing smell."
The image “http://www.japanese-food-for-health.com/images/Tofu.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
Many a lady has sought Mahmoud's love, and many have failed. Don't be that lady. Follow the recipe:

Easy baked tofu (courtesy of Moosewood's Simple Suppers)

1 cake firm tofu (I usually double, especially when cooking for 3 roommates)

Basic marinade:
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons grated peeled ginger root
1 garlic clove (pressed)
sesame seeds
Note: with the ginger and garlic, particularly the ginger, more is always better.

Sweet and Sour Sauce:
Add 2 tablespoons of vinegar and 1 tablespoon of honey or maple syrup to the basic marinade.

In the oven:
I started off making the recipe this way, and don't get me wrong, it's good. However, I find it a little easier and quicker on the stove top. Nevertheless, for the sake of options:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the tofu into slices, cubes, triangles, or sticks. Lightly oil a baking dish large enough to hold the tofu in a single layer. Whisk together the marinade ingredients (or variation ingredients, if using) and rizzle over the tofu. Gently turn or toss to coat thoroughly. Bake uncovered, stirring once or twice, until the oil is sizzling and the tofu is firm and chewy, 30 to 40 minutes. Serve hot, at room temperature, or chilled.

On the stove top:
Open tofu package and rinse the tofu. According to my kitchen guru, Beeks, it is always best to try to drain the tofu of excess water. I usually do this, although sometimes skip it if in a rush. In any case, should you choose to "bake like Beeks," wrap the tofu block in a cloth and place it under a large book (I use the Bible) for about 5 minutes. Cut the tofu into small cubes. I like very small ones because then they get nice and crispy. Heat the vegetable oil and the sesame oil in a large skillet. Add the tofu and sauté, stirring often, for 4 or 5 minutes, until lightly golden. (If you like really crispy tofu you can leave it in way longer). Add the soy sauce and the sweet and sour sauce, lower the heat, and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes longer. Add the sesame seeds in about 5 minutes before you're done cooking.


Great served with a vegetable side (like broccoli) and a grain/starch (favorites have included garlic mashed potatoes, coconut rice and saffron rice).

Love love,
Prof. Tata

Walnut Drops

I know I'm stressed when I relinquish every facet of my life to an over ambitious baking schedule. Last night I was supposed to go to a party, but alas, the Chez Panisse Walnut Drop recipe called out to me--not unlike dangerous-bird women do to poor shipwrecked sailors off Cape Pelorium. The project did not, however, end in a gangorious death but rather an amazingly rich yet very light batch of cookies.

proceed as follows:

for 3 dozen cookies that are generally consumed in one night at 5302 st. urbain: 1 cup walnuts - 4 tablespoons very soft unsalted butter - 4 tablespoons very soft salted butter - 1/4 cup of sugar - 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract - 1 cup flour

Toast the Wanuts lightly in preheated 350 oven until they just begin to brown slightly, 5-7 minutes. Cool completely and grind in a food processor or blender. Be careful that they don't turn to butter. Cream the butters in a mixer until very light and fluffy. Beat in the sugar and vanilla, creaming again until very light. Mix in the nuts and flour just until thoroughly mixed.
According to the recipe a pastry bag should be used but you can just drop dough by teaspoons onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Keep the cookies small. Flatten each drop slightly. Bake for 20-30 minutes at 300 degrees, remove from oven when a light brown.

Cool. Eat. Lay on left side.

very helpful for maintenance of the Imaginary when you feel you are slipping into pure void of the non-signified petit objet (a).
ereene




Friday, April 4, 2008

Lesson #1: broccoli

So as not to mislead our readers, I would like to give the advice on avoiding broccoli incineration.

If you're going out to get trashed, do not steam broccoli just because it is the last perishable item left in your fridge prior to winter break. No one likes healthy party snacks! And if they do, it's called crudite, not cold soggy vegetables. That said, if you decide to ignore this advice, and start cooking up the broccoli anyway, don't leave the apartment just because the power goes out. In this province, everything is electric INCLUDING MOST STOVES, so unless you turn it off, the stove will go on again as soon as the dude at Hydro Quebec wakes up. But if you forget to turn off the stove, and you, say, go watch the Chronicles of Narnia in theatres, don't be surprised if you come back 7 hours later and your apartment has burned down. It probably won't, but you will think it has and this will give you a heart attack so you will die. Luckily this will save you having to endure 4 weeks of revolting all-permeating smell of incineration and from having to buy a new pot.

To your living roommate, I can only recommend those odor-absorbent sponge things that come in tupperware.

Just another helpful tip from the ladies of the spatula!

if only Popeye had known, he might still be with us.

pasta with spinach and cheese.

made this last night with stuff that was going to go bad in the fridge. great experiment, and easy as can be. perfect for a quick meal. sneaky beeks will second its deliciousness. also, it is packed with spinach which is awesome for building guns, which is my ultimate goal now and forever.

word to the wise: you may not feel energized like Popeye does in that cartoons. d'uh. cartoons aren't real life. oh man, more like "word to the dinkus."

anyways, here are the basic instructions, but creativity points will be awarded for branching out. especially with candy.

-put your pasta on to boil (whole wheat tasted pretty alright in this recipe so, why not?)
-while it is cooking, brown some garlic in a bit of oil in a frying pan
-add a package of spinach and a stock of some sort (veggie or chicken depending on your preference) and cover until the spinach is wilted
-when your pasta is finished cooking, add a cup of stock and your spinach/garlic mixture
-add cheese. be creative. i used feta and parm, but cottage cheese, goat cheese, etc. i think would all be delicious
-stir over medium heat until the cheese just starts to melt
-enjoy.

nothing beats beets (or beeks)

If you're rooting for root vegetables, this is the dish for you. ChocolateZuchinni as usual has a delish recipe that you can follow more precisely from the link. Basically, though, you grate an equal weight of beets and carrots, combine with an oil, a vinegar, some mustard and minced garlic, salt and peppa, throw in some toasted nuts (pine nuts, walnuts?) and add feta.

Disclaimers:

(1) if you have quantitative estimation skills like madeleine’s, deleg(r)ate (HAH!) determination of beet and carrot numbers
(2) much as we here at ‘c is for kitchen’ disapprove of the propagation of gender stereotypes, this is the recipe to get yourself a boyfriend for. or a burly lady. polyamory is ideal. your flabby biceps will thank you.
(3) there are inherent dangers related to the consumption of beets some of which will not be discussed on this blog. if you develop a health issue shortly after beet consumption, do not contact us, instead frantically call/email your mom or any of your friend’s parents with medical degrees. the other major danger: stainage. you could wear rubber gloves but then you would be lame AND you would not be able to utilize any of the following:

brilliant suggestions on how to use beet juice to break up beet grating monotony:
necessary equipment→ beets, and unsuspecting victims

(1) the vampire: crude, works best with small children. it is best if they aren’t yours (for many reasons, but in this case, nightmares = not actually funny.)

(2) as accurately as possible, replicate the following photo sequence (bonus points for leaving gratings that make it look like you have a deep wound) (call off the joke before they take you to the hospital, unless you’re canadian or are studying for your degree in joyless sterile interior design, in which case you just hit jackpot baby):




(3) self-tanning accident. actually, if you hang with the right people (read: lindsay lohan or active-living florida retirement community), no one will notice.

(4) possibly the best: stigmata. if all your friends are jewish and don’t know what you are talking about, make new friends. trust me, this is worth it.

thesis: lentils. antithesis: limes. synthesis: great soup. praxis: go make it right now

fact: in 2005 Mexico produced the plurality of global output of lime (ringing in at 12%), followed closely by India, Argentina, Iran and Brazil.

fact: limey, a term often used to describe brits, especially sailors, derives from the daily rations said sailors would receive of lime, in their colonial sojourns, to prevent scurvy. you don't need to identify with mother england to appreciate a good nutrient.

fact: when you spend most of your days in the library, and your idea of a vegetable is the garlic in timmy's garlic cream cheese, it's time to worry about scurvy.

lentil lime soup to the rescue.

fact: to change your life for the better, short of graduation, you will need:
2 cups split red lentils, be sure to rinse and check for tricky little pebbles
1 tablespoon turmeric
4 tablespoons butter
Salt
1 large onion, finely diced, about 2 cups
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 ½ teaspoons mustard seeds
1 bunch chopped cilantro, about 1 cup
Juice of 3 limes, or to taste

Possible toppings/fillings:
1 large bunch spinach leaves, chopped into small pieces (iron is best digested when with citrus)
1 cup cooked rice
yogurt
crumbled feta
a (half) dozen corn tortillas (pitas) torn up and sauteed in olive oil

What is to be done?Put your lentils in a soup pot, along with 10 cups of water, the turmeric, 1 tablespoon of butter, and 1 tablespoon of salt. Bring to boil, then lower heat and simmer (covered) until lentils are soft and falling apart. DM claims this takes 20 minutes. In my experience, this takes 40.

As the soup is cooking, for a disputable amount of time, get going on the onions. In a medium skillet over low heat, put in 2 tablespoons butter, the onion, cumin and mustard seeds. It will smell GREAT. When the lentils are soft, about 15-20 minutes, add cilantro to the onions and cook a minute or two more. Add mixture to the soup.

Wait until the soup seems ready to you. Then add the lime juice. If you aren't sure how much to put in, I usually start with two and end up with three. You've gone too far if on tasting the soup you spontaneously exclaim "blimey, that's limey," though, given the health benefits noted above, it's not too much of a problem.

Right before serving, put the last tablespoon of butter into a wide skillet (or the skillet you used for onions, saves dishes!), when it's foamy, put in the spinach and a dash of salt, and cook for just as long as it takes to wilt. Serve the soup, dish out spinach on top, and distribute other fillings/toppings as desired. My favourite combo is feta and corn tortillas.

TADA!

PS this recipe is from Deborah Madison.

Peeeee Kale soup

Very Important Note on STOCK pre-recipe:

Stock is infuriatingly underrated slash overlooked. A good stock goes a long way. I made this soup twice; the first time with plain ol' h2O and the second time with stock that I had made and obvi the second soup was far superior. This is probably obvious but to make a good stock all you have to do is:
1) Save the parts of your vegetables that you don't eat in the freezer
2) When you've got a good pot-full, stick em' in some water and boil the shit out of them

A ton of the wonderful nutrients are extracted plus the flavor is amaze. Some vegetables that I find have particular stock potential are leek leaves, broccoli and asparagus stems, rutabaga and butternut squash skins.

La Recette

1) Fry up approx. 2 onions and 5 cloves of garlic in a pot-- until the onions are quite tanned.
2) Add a bunch of peas, maybe something like 2 cups.
3) Pour in water or stock after a couple of minutes... I usually add about 2 cups but my soup tends to be quite thick so I guess add more if you don't dig that shit.
4) Simmer for roughly 20 minutes.
5) Take a good bundle of kale leaves and lay them on top to steam.
6) Put through the blender or food processor.
7) Taste it to see if it needs salt and pepper. When I used the wickedly powerful stock, 'twas not necessary!

Love and peas,

Graves

Ginger snaps

Voila. Erin made these at a party once last year and they were delicious, but I have tried since and failed. I think she made them into balls rather than cutting from a log.

Anything else, Rachel darling? The name change is not happening.

Update: the problem has been identified. Wrong recipe. Here is the one Erin made.

Sweet and speedy cornbread

I have consistently managed to win "beat the preheat" on this one. Also from The New Moosewood.
Butter (for the pan)
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk or yogurt
1 egg
3 tbs sugar or honey
3 tbs melted butter or margarine
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease an 8” square pan (or a 9” or 10” cast-iron skillet) with butter or margarine.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine wet ingredients (including sugar or honey).
  4. Stir wet ingredients into the dry, mixing enough to thoroughly combine.
  5. Spread into the pan.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until center is firm to the touch. Serve at any temperature you like! Especially tasty with chili, jam, or butter.

Moosewood Vegetarian Chili with Bulgur

From Mollie Katzen’s The New Moosewood Cookbook (Berkely, California: Ten Speed Press, 2000)
This is great because it has beans and bulgur - protein and carbs! Your one-stop shop for energy, strong fingernails, and gas. Serve with cornbread.
Note: Pre-soak beans! 4-8 hours
2 ½ cups dry kidney beans, soaked
1 cup tomato juice1 cup uncooked bulgur wheat
Olive oil2 cups chopped onion6-8 large cloves garlic, minced1 carrot, diced1 celery stalk, diced2 tsp cumin2 tsp basil2 tsp chili powder1 ½ tsp saltBlack pepper and cayenne1 bell pepper, chopped1 14 ½ oz. can tomatoes3 tbsp tomato paste (half tin)

Toppings:
Parsely (minced)Grated cheddar

  1. Place soaked beans in a pot, cover with water, and bring to a boil. Partially cover, and simmer until tender (75 min). Watch water level during cooking, adding more if necessary. Strain.
  2. Heat tomato juice to boiling. Pour over bulger in a small bowl, cover, and let stand 15 min. Add to beans.
  3. Heat olive oil in a medium-skillet. Add onion, garlic, carrot, celery, seasonings. Saute over medium heat for 5 min. Add bell pepper and saute until all the vegetables are tender.
  4. Add vegetables, tomatoes, and tomato paste to the beans. Simmer on lowest heat, stir occassionally, for 20-30 min. Taste and adjust seasoning.

pistachio carda(yo)mama cake.

dear friends,

here is the pistachio cardamom cake adapted from moosewood (obviously. do i have any other cookbooks?)

but first, because you know how i feel about nutritional information and food factoids, i would like to share the following neat ones about pitachios:

- in a study conducted by Pennsylvania State University's Department of Nutrition and Sciences, pistachios were found to seriously reduce the levels of LDL ("bad cholestorol") in the blood. according to wikipedia, anyway.
- pistachios, in nature, have beige shells. however, many were commercially dyed red or green to hide stains on the shells when the nuts were still picked by hand. in our new modern world, most pistachios are harvested by machine, making the dyeing unnecessary. BUT roastsed pistachios can be turned red if they are marinated in salt and strawberry marinade prior to roastage.
- pistachio trees are hearty, and can survive in temperatures ranging from -10 C o 40C
- this one has to be a quote.... "pistachio nuts are highly flammable when stored in large quantities, and are prone to to self heating and spontaneous combustion". thank you, wikipedia. and now, we are ready.

set the oven to 350 and butter a 7 x 11 inch baking dish

you need:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperate
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup semolina
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted pistachios, plus 12 whole pistachios
1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt

for the syrup:
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

cream the butter and sugar. add the eggs one at a time, until creamy after every additio. then vanilla.

get another bowl, combine semolina, cardamom, cinnamon, and salt. grind the 1/2 cup pistachios in a food processor of some sort (magic bullet? or, coffee grinder/etc) until it becomes a course meal (we're not going for nut butters here, so careful not to overgrind. some chunks are welcome additions to this dense little number). add it to the dry ingredients. then in alternating batche, add the yogurt and dry ingredients to the creamy butter sugar deliciousness, beating well, until it is smooth.

put the batter in the pan, and bake for 30 minutes until a knife in the center comes out clean as a whistle.

while the cake is a bakin, combine water, sugar, lemon zest and juice in a saucepan and bring to a boil, let boil rapidly for about 2 minutes, then set aside.

cut the cake so that it forms 12 triangular pieces, pour the syrup over the cake and press one whole pistachio into the center of each triangle.

voila!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

cause i wouldn't be me if i didn't reference bd

courtesy of theme time radio hour, the "drinking" episode:

bob dylan's mint julep recipe:




4 sprigs of mint
2 ½ ounces of bourbon (“i prefer 3” - bob dylan)
1 tbs powdered sugar
1 tbs water
put the mint leaves, powdered sugar, and water in a collins glass (now ladies and gents, actually who are we kidding... ladies, bob is very specific about the collins glass. as a fellow member of the 'i get all my glassware from dollarama' club, i am posting a picture to facilitate acquisitions)

fill with shaved or crushed ice.
top with bourbon and more ice.
garnish with a mint sprig.

and to finish 'er off, another dylan gem:
“two or three of those and anything sounds good!”

the perfect salad. this is not a joke.

dear friends and lovers,

here is something that i'm positive you would all enjoy (and we should all enjoy together in the park, shortly enough). who wouldnt love something that incorporates leafy greens, lentils, AND goat cheese? no one that any of us would want to be friends with anyway.

you need:
2 tsp oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tsp grated ginger
3 cups vegetable stock
2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
1 1/2 cups red lentils
lots of goat cheese
lots of baby spinach (or any other dark, leafy green)
cracked black pepper
lime wedges

for maximal deliciousness, you should
- heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat
- add the seeds, garlic, and ginger... cook em up for 2 minutes or so
- add the lentils, mix in, and stir for 1 minute
- then add the veggie stock 1 cup at a time, adding more when it has all been absorbed (you know, risotto stylez)... get out the crossword, this could take about 20 minutes.
- remove from heat and stir in the fresh herbs.
- to serve, put greens on plates and top with lentils, then top the lentils with goat cheese. pepper it up, serve with lime wedges.

this is neat and delicious, that is a promise.

'sup supa inca

Supa Inca, notated by Madhur Jaffrey and improvised upon by the Coop (circa 2005-6) was likely first consumed in Machu Picchu, pictured to the left.

While the glorious history of this dish has yet to be fully documented, and is not yet forthcoming (dr curtain, you are welcome to take this on), it is, nonetheless, illustrious.

The bountiful harvests of the Andean highlands coalesce around the mightiest of grains, quinoa. Each bite is a tribute to the Inca empire, with a shoutout to whoever came up with feta.

While this dish is best enjoyed on a break during a moto trip across South America, or after an invigorating match of football, or at least after a trip to the museum of ancient civilizations, there's no shame in indulging right here and now, wherever you find yourself.

Proceed as follows.

3 tablespoons peanut or canola oil
1 medium potato, peeled and cut into dices
2 medium tomatillos, washed and finely chopped (if you aren't in South America or close to a Latin American grocer, you can substitute tomatoes)
1 cup corn kernels
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh hot chile (red or green) (optional,
but not really)
2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
1 cup quinoa, washed and drained
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 block crumbled feta

Put the oil in a heavy, medium pan and set over medium-high heat. Put
in the potato an stir and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the potato
pieces have browned lightly on all sides. Add the tomatillos and stir
and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until they soften. Add the corn,
chile, and cilantro. Stir for another minute. Add the quinoa and stir
for a minute. Now add 2 cups of water and the salt. Stir and bring to
a boil. Cover tightly, turn the heat down to very low, and cook gently
for 20 minutes. Set the pan aside in a warm place, covered and
undisturbed, for another 15 minutes. Fluff the grains, Then add feta.

PS. This can be addictive.
PPS. Doubling is kinda a must.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

banana is sooo 1995

pumpkin bread!

350 is yo' temp

whisk/stir vigorously/razzle-dazzle:

1 1/2 cups of flour
1 1/2 tsps cinnamon
1 tsp salt (not coarse)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp baking powder

alas, another bowl (obvs find yourself a dishes friend, harder with baking than cooking, instructions forthcoming: curtain, dr. "finding yourself a kitchen friend." c is for kitchen. August 2008)

mix and set aside:

1/3 cup milk or water
1/2 tsp vanilla

in yet another bowl (large, and yes, this time size is important), beat/agitate/whollop until creamy:

6 tbs unsalted butter (whatever, you're going to need that bypass anyway)

add 1 1/3 sugar (combinations of white or brown)
2 eggs
1 cup pumpkin puree
the above dry mixture gradually
the milk mixture gradually
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/3 cup raisins or chopped dates

lovingly ladle into larded (greased) loaf pan
1 hour later all your roommates will suddenly appear

don't you wish your salad dressing was hot like me?

MoneyTeph's delicious dressing:

1 part vinegar
1 part oil
splish splash of soya sauce (not too much)
1 clove garlic
1 plop of honey mustard
salt and pepper to taste

shake, don't stir and serve.

booya.

KRAFT DINNER, pro-styles

in deference to lady s' reply to prof tata's link, i will include the kd recipe so that you guys don't need to go looking to the box. however, to make the KD extra good, you will most likely need the box, and contents.

step 1: purchase KD. at bonanza can be attained for the low low price of 99 cents.

step 2: fill pot with water. turn on heat. bring to a boil. at that point, add salt (doing so before it reaches a boil will slow the process down, kinda contradicts the whole point of kd).
step 3: open box. remove cheese package (for the uninitated, it looks like an envelope, and feels squishy). after removing cheese package and setting aside, dump contents (macaroni) into pot. stir occasionally, tasting regularly, and remove when it reaches al dente. or after, if you are lame.
step 4: drain pasta

step 5: put pasta back into original pot, on the element, but at a low temperature. taking advantage of the heat, melt butter (a tablespoon? tsp? take control! this is your life!) into the pasta, open the metallic envelope and spill the powder into the buttered pasta. lastly, slowly, pour in a little milk. little by little. you don't want to put in too much, or else you may have to live with regrets for a long long time. luckily, because this last step is occuring on a heated element, excess milk will be evaporate more rapidly than if you had it on an unheated element.

step 6: serve immediately. garnish with salt and/or pepper. possibly ketchup, but i've never been into that sugary addition to what is essentially a savoury dish.

step 7: put away leftovers. you may find a handy snack in your fridge the next morning! (although, leftovers are unusual, so i wouldn't count on it)

for the doubters

FOOD IS FUN, administration is not

Beeks, Money Teph, and MCO just made kraft dinner.

Delicious.

Instructions can be found on the box.

love
lady spatulax3

coconut red-lentil curry

Ok wow, this is hilarious. Ok, here's one of my favorites (thank you esther). In the unforgettable words of the upcoming MC Beareeen, "check, ch, check, check, ch, check, check, ch, check it out": http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/236684

My other posts will surely be more hilarious and witty, but I am intellectually drained after listening to 3 hours of idiot presentations, one of which began with a sound clip of applause FOR HER OWN PRESENTATION.

-Prof. Tata,
Ph.D Candidate In Going Out To Dinner Too Often

Admin stuff...

Instead of signing in through the same email address, I suggest we all become separate authors of the blog and have sent emails inviting everyone. Although I think you have to use a gmail account so if you don't have one, and don't want one (that advertising stuff is admittedly creepy) you can still use the cisforkitchen@gmail.com. Also useful if you want to leave a nasty anonymous remark about someone else's cooking.

Finally, we can limit views to only authors, only people we invite, or everyone on the planet (potentially). Preferences?

Spelt honey cookies

This is a sweet idea! It'll be such a great way to keep in touch next year. It's like a high-tech and less magical but infinitely more enjoyable and useful version of those jeans in Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants. Because really- who needs pants?

Here is the recipe for those spelt honey cookies I brought to the lebanese feast at St. Joseph a few weeks ago, prompting both Helen and Elise to break their sugar-fasts.

hump day surprise--chickpeas and greens with moroccan spices

dear ladies of the spatula (and friends/creepy internet stalkers),

this is the inaugural post of our interweb sisterhood. madeleine discovered this little gem (in a deborah madison cookbook), and cooked a delicious feast for beeks on a humble wednesdsay evening. hump days are good days if you have the following ingredients:


CHICKPEAS AND GREENS WITH MOROCCAN SPICES
1 large bunch chard, stems removed
3 cups cooked chickpeas or 30oz canned, rinsed
6 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
Salt
2 tsps sweet paprika
1 tsp whole black peppercorns
1 ½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp turmeric
3 tbsps olive oil
¼ cup chopped cilantro
2 tbsps chopped parsley
1 white onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, diced into ½ inch squares
¼ tsp dried thyme
1 small dried red chile
1 preserved lemon, skin only (we replaced with zest and juice of one lemon, but lemon with caution!)

Boil or steam green until wilted, then chop coarsely and set aside. Cover chickpeas with cold water and gently rub them between your hands to loosen the skins. Tip the bowl so that the skins flow off. Drain.

Pound the garlic in a mortar with a ½ tsp salt until smooth or mince it with a knife. Add the dried spices, 1 tsp oil to moisten the mixture, and 2 tbsps of the cilantro and parsley. Pound until a rough paste is formed.
[WARNING: we discovered that it would have been wise to pound the peppercorns first. unless of course, playing hide and seek peppercorns on your plate is your idea of a good time in which case, ignore this disclaimer.]

Heat the remaining oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, pepper, thyme, and dried chile. Cook for 7 minutes, then stir in the garlic paste, chickpeas, and ½ cup water or bean broth. When the onion is soft, add the tomatoes, greens, ½ tsp salt, and another ½ cup water. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining cilantro and lemon and serve.

Serve with couscous or bulgur!!

with love,
mco & beeks.