I'm not too sure what Dirty Rice is exactly. I know it has sausage and other animal bits in it as well as cayenne. This is my new version of it. I found these "sausages" at whole foods the other week in the tofu/tempeh section and was wondering why there were being stocked there. I thought they were real sausages. Then I read that they were made from legumes, grain and vegetables and I bought them. This was an unusual purchase for me since I usually shy away from items like this. But the ingredients weren't weird at all and I was excited that they said HOT and SPICY on em. So here is my latest version of the recipe.
Kinda Dirty Rice
1 cup uncooked jasmine rice
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Field Roast Sausage Mexican Chipotle link chopped (about 1/2 cup)
2 Tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup chopped white onion
1 medium jalapeno, seeded and chopped small
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small carrot, diced small (approx. 1/2 cup)
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons cayenne
pinch of red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 15oz can of black beans, drained but not rinsed (or use fresh black beans)
*Cook rice according to whatever rice cooking rules you follow.
*Brown sausage in 1 Tablespoon of olive oil.
*Heat remaining 2 Tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet. Add onion, jalapeno, garlic and carrots and cook until al dente.
*Add paprika, cayenne, red pepper flakes and thyme and cook 1 minute more.
*Add cooked sausage and beans. Cook until heated thru and flavors have a chance to meld a bit. About 10 minutes over medium heat.
*Add cooked rice to the sausage black bean mixture and combine.
*Season with salt and pepper.
This was so good and spicy hot. If you are sensitive to hot spices just reduce the amount of cayenne. Peter and I love spicy food though. Ideally this recipe would have a bell pepper in there somewhere. I was under the impression that I had one in my fridge. I couldn't find it (which doesn't mean it's not there) so I used a carrot instead. The sausages themselves pack quite a punch of heat. The "sausage" was sooooooooo good. Kinda like a seitan sausage. I have 3 of them left and have to think of other recipes to use them in. I can't wait to use the rest of them.
Monday, November 27, 2006
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Saturday morning I made Ben's Cinnamonny Apple Almond Pancakes! I didn't have cinnamon so mine were All Spicey Apple Almond Pancakes. They were D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S!! Peter gave them the seal of approval. Instead of just plain maple syrup I added some apple cider to the maple syrup to make it super apple tasting. They are super easy to make. I plan on making them again for breakfast and I have an idea in my head to make a dessert out of them.
After breakfast we decided to go out into nature and drove up to Skylands Botanical Gardens somewhere in north jersey. I had no idea where I was and kept asking Peter why he was driving us to our death. But we survived. Although I got a migraine because I became dehydrated. Who knew that could happen in the fall/winter. I passed out when we got home.
Anyway, we found a hole in a tree and took some photos. I like these. It was alot of fun. I climbed a tree and didn't fall out. I crossed a bog buy jumping on some stones that went across the middle and didn't fall in. I heard gunshots and didn't get shot. It was a good day. (again, accept for the migraine)
Sunday(tonight) we had Friday Thanksgiving leftovers. Instead of chard I just made a salad topped with Broccosprouts and Crunchy Sprouts along with some raw sunflower seeds. I usually don't buy store-bought salad dressings but I couldn't resist an Organic Miso dressing I saw at whole foods. It was so tasty I ended up eating the salad before the seitan pie things I made. Which were equally good. I like them better fresh because I'm weird with mushrooms (they need to be crispy). Since they were sitting in the fridge for a few days the mushrooms got soft. I pulled them all out. The sweet potatoes and the seitan developed a wonderful flavor though. Still I prefer these the same day they are made.
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Happy Be-lated Thanksgiving!
Thanksgiving this year was at my in-laws. I decided not to bring anything of mine over to eat because (1) it would have been a big deal to reheat because his mom uses every inch of the stove and oven (understandably) (2) i woke up too late to make what I wanted. (3) i didn't feel like explaining what I would have been eating. Instead I decided to have my sister over on Friday for MY thanksgiving meal. This is one of the first real recipes I ever came up with years ago. I think even before I went to school. I still don't have a name for the recipe. I actually don't have the recipe written down. I'm still always changing it. This version that I made today was my favorite though. I took homemade seitan and minced it up. Sauteed it with shallots, garlic, thyme, sage, salt and pepper. Then deglazed it with red wine. Let it cook down again and deglazed it again with wine. It comes out so winey and so delicious I can't even explain the taste. While this is being done I have a mix of sliced mushrooms roasting in the oven until crispy and brown. And am also boiling sweet potatoes to be mashed. Once everything is finished cooking I break out the filo dough and start layering the sheets. Then plop on the mashed sweet potatoes, then the crispy mushrooms and finally the seitan and wrap it all up. I baked them in the oven for about 25 minutes or so. I served them with sauteed garlicky swiss chard. This was the first time I used sweet potatoes. I usually use red skin potatoes. I will never use anything other then sweet potatoes again. They went so well with the winey seitan and mushrooms. I also crisped the mushroom more then I usually do and it gave the whole dish a smokey taste to it. I can't wait to eat the leftovers tomorrow!
One other thing. This was so easy to make considering all the different things that needed to be done for it. It took less than 1 hour to cook everything and assemble. It also could have been done sooner but I took little breaks to do whatever.
Dessert! The quickest, easiest dessert ever. This is the Coconut Chocolate Pudding from VwaV. It was so good. Nicole even liked it even though it was all natural. She prefers processed unnatural food. She also hates to cook. I don't know where she came from. My only problem with the recipe was the amount that it made. It should have served 4. There was no way in hell this would have served 4 people. Thankfully there was only 3 of us. I would definitely double the recipe next time. Or at least 1 1/2 times. I wish I had more right now!
Monday, November 20, 2006
What has Oklahoma done to my darling husband?!?!?! He gets off the plane and they whisk him away to a humungo steak dinner. After work today (in Tulsa) another steak dinner. I'm sure tomorrow it will be yet again another STEAK DINNER! Oh my goodness! I'm going to have to make a humungo salad when he gets home on Wednesday. He better get home soon. The cats don't know what to do without him here to bother them. Riley actually slept curled up next to my stomach last night which he never really does. I have a strange "guard cat" Riley will sleep right up next to me when peter isn't around. He will also get up in the middle of the night when he hears any strange noises and growl! He's the alpha male when peter isn't around.
Thai food wasn't that good last night. :( I went crazy and ordered something completely different and was disappointed. I ordered some sorta string bean in basil something with chef's special tofu. The tofu wasn't as special as it usually is. That's ok. I had fun with my sister. The best part was that I got lost getting there. Its basically 3 blocks from my house. 3 very close and simple to navigate blocks. I don't know what happened. One missed turn and it all went to hell.
The bad thing about not having him here is that I don't cook and eat horribly. I forced the sous chef at work to make me seitan today for a snack so at least I knew I was eating something good. For dinner tonight I baked frozen potato crispy things. I never buy this shit. But I did and I ate it now I feel like shit. I'm going to need that humungo salad just as much as Peter will need one.
To everyone who has responded about him being away THANKS!
Tomorrow I might actually get off my ass and be productive.
One more thing! Brother Stephen. I won the tickets! Did you?
Sunday, November 19, 2006
I'm waiting for this handsome guy to get off a plane and give me a call from Tulsa. So to relax i'm going out for some veggie Thai food with my sis. Since it's the only time I can have some thai cuz Peter hates it. Even though when forced to eat it he likes it but then changes his mind about it after dinner. THE PHONE!
This just in. Peter has just called! Yeah! He's in Tulsa. God knows what's in Tulsa.
Out to dinner now!
Saturday, November 18, 2006
Can you guess which one is mine and which one is Peter's? I made Peter's most hated brussel sprouts. So all he got was some delicious roasted beets (i got some too!) I'm not going to let him hog all the beets just cuz he's a sprout hater. Anyway. This dinner was from a few night ago. I took some cubed seitan (i wish i had the slices instead, figures I alway's freeze those) and soaked them in some soymilk and dijon. then dredged them in a flour mixture with paprika, chile powder, salt and pepper and fried them up in a little bit of oil. I served it with jasmine parsley rice, roasted beets for peter and beets and brussel sprouts for me and used the left over Alfreda sauce from VwaV to sauce the seitan. It was soooooooooo good. At first I didn't know if I liked it. But after a few bites I was hooked. I was so happy that I used the leftover Alfreda for something different instead of just cooking more pasta for it.
The only problem with making this meal was all the pots and pans I had to use. It took forever to clean up. 1 pot for the seitan. 1 pot for the rice. 1 pot for the sprouts. 1 pot for the beets. 1 pot to heat up the alfreda. 2 bowls to soak and flour the seitan. 2 bowls to eat out of. So much for something that was so easy to make. Such a mess for a meal for 2.
On to this weekend. It was all about Peter and what he wanted to eat and do. All because he is going on a business trip tomorrow (his first) to Tulsa, Oklahoma. Friday night we went to see the new James Bond movie. I was never really into those movies but I LOVED this one. I also LOVE the new bond guy. He was so good. Peter was very happy to see it. Today I asked what he would like for dinner and of course Broccoli Rabe Pasta came out of his mouth. I was all too happy to make it for him. It's so easy and it's his favorite. Tomorrow he leaves me, Riley and Captain Clearbear until wednesday to fend for ourselves. :( I keep telling him me and the cats are going to all sit in his favorite chair together and cry. It upsets him. I think it's funny.
I also made him our favorite shake of the month. Peanut Butter Zig Zag. We are obsessed. We need to stop.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Riley had his "about him" post a few weeks ago so it's time for Captain Clearbeards "about me" post. Here she is in all her glory. First I'll explain the name Captain Clearbeard. She drinks water like it's the last time she'll ever see it. She's obsessed. When she drinks water she sticks her chin and chest into the water creating a glorious clearbeard. Recently she has been shaking it off like she's a dog. But some dropplets still remain. It's incredible. I've yet to capture a picture of the actual clearbeard. We just call her CB for short. As you can see she is a vicious beast. A neighbor of ours in the building had her first but we found her in the hallway one morning and she has lived with us since. Her likes are: killing crickets, drinking gallons of water, kneeding her silver paws on my belly, biting, attacking, attacking from behind, revenge attacks, hanging out in the kitchen when I wash dishes(for the water), bean liquid (she's weird), birds on the fire escape, the spider in the kitchen. Her dislikes are: being attacked from behind, being bite, having riley walk towards her (he's 25 pounds, she's 1/2 that weight), wolf noises peter likes to make at her, being held when she doesn't request it, being left alone for to long. Peter and I agree that what she hates most about herself is her super super soft fur. I could pet her super super soft fur all day. But then she would bite me all day. We love her to death. I like to sing songs about her when i'm cooking. She secretly likes all the attention we give her though she pretends to be a beast.
Now to food
Last night I made Fetuccini Alfreda from VwaV. I LOVE this sauce. It's probably one of my favorite recipes from the book. I've made it so many times. With all the cooking I did over Sunday and Monday I needed something that was going to be quick and easy and didn't require alot of chopping. (I broke my right (dominate) hand LAST Nov. 28! and it's still bothering me at times. Making pizza dough really bothered it the other day but at least it was good exercise for my hand.) I love that this recipe makes enough so we can have it for pasta one night and something else another. Usually pasta again. This time I'm going to do something different with the leftover sauce. I'm not sure what though.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
I posted this last night. Blogger posted it 2 times. Today I tried to delete the copy and it deleted both. So now i'm writing it again. But it probably won't be as funny.
Sunday night I had a Pizza Party. The only people invited were Me and Peter. Peter's brother Fuzzy showed up right on time to crash our pizza party. He's lucky I like him. And we had enough pizza for three. The first pizza is spread with my basil-miso pesto and topped with crispy mushrooms with thyme and sage and sliced marinated sundried tomatoes. The second pizza is spread with my sundried tomato-almond pesto and topped with broccoli rabe sauteed with garlic and pine nuts. I couldn't decide which one I liked better. Whichever one was in my mouth at the time was my favorite. The same with Peter. Fuzzy said the mushroom was the best. What does he know. I had so much fun making this pizza. The dough is a recipe from school it's The Pizza Police's Favorite Pizza Dough. The story is that these lady's from italy came over to nyc to find the best pizza dough. This was deemed the best. It's my favorite even though it's the only dough i've made. In school I lucked out and got to make this one and it was better then the other recipes that everyone else got stuck with. I might be just biased though.
This was monday's dinner. A whole foods grain veggie burger "sandwiched" between garlicky chard and melted red onions. As a side I roasted baby red potatoes in olive oil. When there was about 5-10 minutes of cooking time left on the potatoes I threw in some chopped fresh parsley and lemon zest from one lemon. These are now my new favorite potatoes to make and eat. I wish I had extra but I only made enought for the two of us.
On Sunday I also made Vive's Coconut Lime Cookies for the first time. I didn't follow the recipe exactly because I was having too much fun singing and dancing around to the new Killers CD so i'm not sure if they came out how they were meant to. I loved them anyway. They were so limey and coconuty. I'm in love. The next time I promised myself that I would be a good baker and follow the recipe. The next time prolly being this weekend. :)
I also made Seitan on sunday. So much cooking. This is the seitan from VwaV. After I mixed the seitan all up and was getting the broth ready I realized that I used up all the tamari that i needed. So I made a broth out of water, veg broth and red wine. Hence the wine color of the seitan. It smelled so good while cooking. I hope it taste as good as it smelled. I'm sure it will. Whenever I make seitan i alway's slice 1/2 into "steaks" and cube the rest and freeze some of it. I just realized this sunday that I alway's freeze the steaks and leave the cubes to be used first. I'm sure there is some sorta psychological problem associated with this.
That's it. Retyped for the second time. If blogger fucks this up again someone will die. Have a nice day!
Saturday, November 11, 2006
In the fridge I found the leftover chile from earlier in the week. And in my food cabinet I found leftover taco shells from my very first post that were about to expire. I combined the two and had a wonderful dinner. The chile was even better tonight then it was the first night because all the flavors were melding into wonderfulness in the fridge. So I simply stuffed the chile into the taco shells and popped them into the over for about 15 minutes until the chile was heated all the way through. When they were out of the oven I slipped a slice of avocado soaked in lemon juice between the chile and the shell. Then topped it all off with raw zucchini that I sliced into strings with my mandoline! The rawness of the zucchini was a perfect contrast to everything else. I put diced raw zucchini on my rice and beans alot and thought of using it here also. I'm very happy I thought of it. I served the taco's with extra garlicky Broccoli. I ate 4 of them! I probably could have eaten more but I had to refrain myself.
This is a dinner we had a few nights ago that I didn't have time to post about. I remembered one morning that I had froze some of the pasta sauce I made a few weeks ago. So I pulled it out before work and had It for dinner that night. Nothing to great. I love finding forgotten food. This was so warm and comforting. Peter was happy because it was his nonna's recipe that I recreated and apparantly recreated successfully.
We went food shopping tonight. Here is some of the haul. Some of the food I plan to make this week are: My Fire Roasted Tomato and Butternut Soup following the recipe I wrote down. The PPK Fettucini Alfreda, if I'm actually able to buy the yeast. Pizza's with homemade crust! Homemade Seitan and Chocolate Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream! I was excited that Whole Foods was having a sale on Coconut Milk 2 cans for $3!! I bought 4 even though I already have a couple in the food cabinet. I however have been very disappointed in our local Whole Foods recently. I'm having a hard time finding items that I need that they use to carry. Even similiar items that are just a different brand. For 2 weeks now I've been going on and off looking for Nutritional Yeast with no luck. I go tonight and still no Nutritional Yeast. They said maybe tuesday. I don't believe them. So now I will have to lug it home from nyc after work on Monday. They just seem to be scaling back on alot of items. I'm not so happy about it.
Nothing about food. But right now I'm watching a biography on Psychic Children. I'm terrified! There is something called a Crystal Child!!
Friday, November 10, 2006
Holy Moly!! Today was the first day of the Chocolate Show at the Metropolitan Pavilion on 19th street in nyc. There will be no food post tonight. Peter, my parents(who came all the way up from south jersey) and myself gorged ourselves on chocolate all afternoon. Well we at least thought my dad did. It turns out he was collecting un-wrapped chocolate samples in both of his jacket pockets for later while drinking all the liquor samples that were there. While we were out to lunch he said "hey lady, want some chocolate?" and produced out of his pockets the chocolate samples. HYSTERICAL! He didn't want to eat all the free chocolate at once. I'm so chocolated out that I can't even remember what chocolate I ate. At 5:00 I passed out in bed with a chocolate coma. Now i'm going out to dinner with friends for some Orange "chicken" at Veggie Heaven. I'm actually thinking about going again on Sunday with my sister and one time neighbor Audrey. After the show we ate at Cafeteria around the block. I had the 100% vegan burger. It had absolutly no taste. I wonder if it alway's has no taste or if it was the fault of chocolate? Can chocolate ever be at fault though? I love you chocolate!
p.s. On the train to jersey coming home. Guardian angel Curtis Sliwa got on. At first I though I was having a weird chocolate induced vision. But it was really him. I'm happy that there weren't any Gotti's around to shoot him up because he was standing right next to us.
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Tonight I had big plans on meeting Jamie Oliver "The Naked Chef". He's a very meat and potatoes guy but I love him. I love what he has done with Englands school lunch program and he makes good veg. He was speaking in NYC tonight and I was going to get him to sign his new book for my mom. Instead I decided that waiting 4 hours alone in a bookstore wasn't worth it. Especially since it was going to rain and I've been a bit woozy on and off since sunday. So I came home to do laundry. That didn't happen either. The pic you see to the right is what happened and I couldn't be happier. I had two butternut squash's to use for another recipe I'm making but I hate peeling and chopping the bottom because it's such an awkard piece. So I decided to stuff both squash bottoms with my BlackBean, Cashew and Apricot Chile.
I actually wrote the recipe down and will write it below in a minute. The one photo is of one of them fully stuffed and the other 1/2 stuffed so you can see what it's like. For some reason I thought this was important. I think I was just happy about how it all was coming out that I went picture taking crazy.
This is actually a very easy dish to make and it's perfect if you have left over Chile. For the squash just:
~preheat oven to 400 degrees
~chop off the bottoms of the butternut squash
~scoop out all the seeds and guts
~rub all over with oil
~place cut side down on a parchment lined baking tray and bake until cooked and slightly al dente
While all of this is being done make the chile!
Black Bean, Cashew and Apricot Chile
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped (approx 2 cups)
1 1/2-2 cups carrots diced
1 medium size jalapeno, seeded and thinly sliced
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped (approx 1 cup)
3 large cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon tumeric
1 heaping tablespoon ground cumin
1 1/2 tablespoons chile powder
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 15oz can black beans, drained
1 28oz can fire roasted tomatoes either diced or ground
1 cup raw whole cashews
5 dried apricots, diced small
~Heat oil in large pot and add onion, carrots and red bell pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes and add the jalapeno and garlic and cook until carrots start to soften up.
~Add all the spices to the pot and stir on medium heat for 2 minutes to cook the spices.
~Add black beans, tomatoes, cashews and apricots.
~Cook until cashews are soft and apricots have plumped up about 30 minutes.
~Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Stuff the inside of the butternut until there is a lovly mound on top and bake in the oven for 10 minutes to meld it all together.
It's alittle spicy but that's how chile should be in my book. If you are sensitive to spices just cut back where you think you need to. This recipe I think will easily fill about 6 medium squash bowls. Too bad I only had two. What to do with the leftovers now.
Eek! I made another soup! This was sunday's lunch and monday's leftovers. It is Myra Kornfeld's French Lentil Soup from the Voluptuous Vegan. It was rather good. Peter really liked it. I served it with whole wheat garlic toast. I'm getting into this whole "in the mood" for soup thing.
Sunday, November 05, 2006
This was one of those weeks where I wasn't able to cook at all:
Monday: bad day at work=out to eat
Tuesday: friends b-day=out to eat
Wednesday: dmv=out to eat
Thursday: don't remember but. out to eat
Friday: nothing but peters brother wanted to go out to eat
I am sick of eating out. I make better food at home. But too much was happening that if I cooked dinner any of those days we would have eaten at 9pm or later. Anyway. I was watching Top Chef and they had to make a favorite meal from there childhood and update it. Which got me to thinking about Shepherds Pie. I loved it as a child. I haven't cooked from The Voluptuous Vegan which is by one of my old cooking school teachers, Myra Kornfeld, in a long time and remembered that there was a recipe in it for the dish so I went for it. There are so many steps to this recipe that you can only make it on a day off. At one point I had 4 things cooking at once for this. Tempeh was steaming, Zucchini was baking, Potatoes were boiling and Onions were sweating. Plus when all the was happening I was chopping spinach and garlic and other stuff. In the end I think it was too much work for the result. It was very good for what it was. But not what I was looking for. I remember shepherd pie as a bubbling mess of deliciousness. This version had no sauce so I ended up making a quick brown sauce for it just to give it something extra. I'm already working on a version in my head of what I think it should be like. Which of course involves another addiction of mine: Seitan.
This is the best part of the meal I had. Brussel Sprouts!!! Oh how i love me sprouts!! Lucky for me Peter hates brussel sprouts so I get to eat them all myself except when my sister is around. My favorite way of cooking them is slicing them in 1/2 and putting them sliced side down in a bit of oil and caramelized them on that side. Cover them for a bit to "steam" them up and then season with salt and pepper and eat eat eat!!
Last night we even had dessert. Peanut Butter Zig Zag Shake's!! Simply blend the ice cream with soy milk and drink! Peter wished they were bigger but after a heavy meal like the Shepherds Pie I think a huge milkshake would kill us. Besides we were late for a party at the Ace Bar in NYC which we never made it too because we drove around the east village for OVER an hour looking for parking. We never made it to the party. Sorry Andrea! I blame the CMJ Music Festival for the lack of parking.
Friday, November 03, 2006
Welcome to my addiction. Soy Mochachino's. I can't not have one. I tried to make myself believe that there is a difference between a habit and an addiction. In this case there isn't a difference. I love them so much that I make them at home with my own expresso machine. I have special cups for it. I love them iced. Today I didn't have any ice. If I liked the soymilk that we use at my job I'd have them there also. Unfortunatly the soy milk there is gross. I'll be late to work because i'm going out of my way to get my addiction at 7 am. I might even be late to work today because of it.