52Weeks · Breakfast · Mexican

Has Claws

Thai Migas

migas

“I have to do a fusion dish this week for /r/52weeks of cooking.  What should I do?”

“How about Mexican Thai?!?!”

“WTF is Mexican Thai??”

“I dunno, that’s for you to figure out”

So with that conversation I set out to figure out what Mexican Thai would be.  Due to a crazy schedule I decided to go with a breakfast dish, figuring I would have plenty of time on Saturday morning to make the dish and get it posted.  Well I was right regarding at least one of those things, but sometimes that happens.  After much googling and searching in recipe books I decided that the best Mexican/Texan dish to cross with Thai cuisine was a breakfast dish known as migas.  Similar to chilaquies, migas features fresh corn chips along with eggs, tomatoes, and seasonings.  Since I was going the Thai route I also looked at various egg curries, to get an idea of what flavor profiles would work best for what I was looking to do.  In order to go the extra mile I also made my own chips using some corn tortillas that were getting close to the end of their life.

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This breakfast was a HUGE hit and extremely filling.  The only down side was in the chip making process where I didn’t read the lines on the inside of my fryer correctly and wasn’t able to use the basket.  Luckily gently dropping them in and fishing them out with a metal spatula worked just fine!  To top it off I served Joe a Banana Lassi, which went perfectly with the heat of the dish. I left off the nuts and added 1/4 tsp of amchur powder to the dish as a nod to the more popular mango lassi.  Perfection!

Baking · Home Cooking

Just a Little

Pumpkin Spice Bread

For the most part I keep to my recipe book when it comes to making bread, changing up recipes only after careful thought and research to make sure I’m not going to burn down the house or poison my spouse.  There have been some great results, Apple Cider Bread and Cream Cheese Bread for example.  However there have also been some failures, and while none of them were of the charred variety they weren’t edible regardless of what my husband told me.   When I saw how much roasted pumpkin I had after making my pumpkin pasta I froze the extra so that I could do something with it once I figured out what that something was.  After a bit of thought I decided to attempt a pumpkin spice bread.  I used my recipe for zucchini bread and molded it with an older recipe for applesauce bread.  The idea was the that the zucchini portion would give me the right idea for spices while the applesauce bread would take in to account the moisture content of the roasted pumpkin mush.  For the settings on the bread machine I went with the standard options – bake regular, medium size, and normal crust.

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This bread was perfection!  Toasted and with the addition of some butter and cinnamon sugar it was the perfect breakfast.  It also made some great French Toast!

Secret Recipe Club · Slow Cooker · Vegan

We Go Together

Slow Cooker Coconut Curry

 

Secret Recipe Club time is here again!  Last month I was lucky enough to have three(!!!) SRC recipes, only time will tell if that happens again.  This month I was assigned The Cookin’ Chemist which is run by Tessa, a former chem major who sees cooking as an edible experiment.  I completely understand this sentiment, which is why I will one day own the “Baking is Science for Hungry People” shirt/apron.  Tessa’s blog has a great recipe search function that made it really easy to find all sorts of delicious treats.  Since the weather has been HOT HOT HOT lately, I wanted to find something that used the oven as little as possible.  Stumbling upon her slow cooker coconut curry I knew I had found the perfect match since she mentioned serving it up during a similar heat wave.  I did some slight modifications to the recipe it order to make it vegetarian friendly and also increase the heat level.  I also found that I needed to use all the sauce since I was using 2lbs of veggies in place of the 1lb of meat.

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Delicious, simple, and easy!  What more does one really need in a recipe?!?!   We had enough for dinner, including seconds, as well as lunches the next day. Another wonderful adventure thanks to the Secret Recipe Club, I can’t wait to see who I’m partnered with next month!

In other news, my garden is going fabulously!  In fact, the eggplant and the peper for this dish came from my garden.  I’ve since harvest one more eggplant along with a large number of cherry tomatoes and a few normal sized tomatoes.  I lost a few squash to critters the other week, and have since adjusted my netting to avoid any more issues.

 

 

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Asian · Secret Recipe Club · Vegan

Our Little Tribe

Baingan Bhartha

I am especially privileged this month to get a third (3rd!!!) Secret Recipe Club post in order to help out an orphan from Group D.   As soon as I saw the recipe page from Enriching your kid! I knew that finding a recipe was going to be easy…and that settling on one was going to be a pain.  Once skipping over the baby recipes I noticed the large number of Indian dishes staring at me, including my favorite Palak Paneer.  I then noticed this delicious tofu dish followed by an International Incident recipe for Biryani, which was for the noodle theme that inspired me to join my first blogging link-up group.  Needless to say this match-up was meant to be!

After much debating back and forth I decided to go with Baingan Bhartha, which is one of Joe’s favorite go-to Indian dishes.  Joe had mentioned wanting to do Indian for lunch today, just more proof that this SRC feature was meant to be.  After a quick stop at the garden to get an eggplant and a few tomatoes, I was in business!  I did make two changes to the recipes, dropping the fresh coriander since I wasn’t sure how much to use and I also roasted the eggplant in half for 30minutes at 450, instead of grilling it for an hour.  I didn’t have the time to get our grill going once we got back from the vet and didn’t think any member of the household would appreciate the oven at such a high heat for an hour.  I didn’t notice any textural difference in the dish from how it’s served at our local Indian restaurant, but it’s possible they take the same short cut as well.   I plan to give this recipe another go using the grilling technique, once I hunt down some Paneer so that Joe and I can have a true Indian feast!

As a quick aside I have never seen or heard of a chayote but after seeing Shirley’s recipe for Chayote with grated coconut I’m going to be stalking the local Asian market until I find it.


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Salad

Better Off

Curry Apple Tofu

The original plan was to post this for Simple and in Season, then life got in the way and that didn’t really happen.  So I missed the September round but I am trying to figure out something for October.  After being sick I haven’t been cooking as much, but that’s partially because Joe and I were fortunate enough to go to NYC this past weekend.  It was a late birthday get-together with his family, and everyone had a great time.  Nothing like sweet potato enchiladas and a mocha cheesecake to celebrate getting older! I was also gifted with a new hand mixer, so no more burning/smoking while cooking which is a plus.  This recipe doesn’t require a mixer or much of anything for that matter…but the longer it chills the better it will taste.

Ingredients: (serves 4-6)

  • 2 tsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tsp apple vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 16 oz firm tofu, pressed and dried
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 2 large Cortland Apples, diced
  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 3 tbsp plain nonfat yogurt
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • pinch salt & pepper

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, mix together the soy sauce and vinegar and set aside

  2. Press and dry the tofu for 10minutes and then crumble the tofu into bite-sized pieces. Heat the oil in a skillet on medium-high heat. add the garlic and tofu and cook, stirring often, about 5 minutes, add the soy vinegar mixture to the tofu, stir to coat and cook for a minute. remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

  3. Place the celery, red onion, and apples in to a small bowl and set aside. 

  4. In a small bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, yogurt, curry powder, salt, and pepper. Stir into the vegetables apple mixture and then add the cooled tofu and mix well.

I prefer to serve this on bread as an open faced sandwich but it would also work well inside of a pita or as part of a more traditional sandwich.   Feel free to switch up the types of apples used, I tend to go towards the more sour types but a crisp sweet apple would also work.  If you have access to Pink Lady Apples go for those for my sake since my Farmer’s Market is apparently not carrying them this year…

Vegan

It’s My Party

Tofu Curry

Today is the most important day of the year, IMHO, because today is the anniversary of my birth.  My better half made the mistake of getting me a Nook for my birthday and I’m already addicted.  I never thought I would get an e-Reader but I have to admit the thing is rather handy and the battery life is much better than I expected.  It’s also perfect for weekends away and for any longer trips that I’m hoping to make in the next year.

The recipe for tonight is one of my go-to-favorites.  The ingredients used can vary based on what is in your fridge, so great clean out recipe!  It is also great for rainy days because the broth just warms you up heart and soul.  As written this recipe has some heat which can be toned down by removing the peppers while those looking for for more bang, can skip the deseeding process or add more chiles.

Ingredients: (serves 4)

  • 1 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 1tbsp veg oil
  • 2 thai chiles, partially deseeded
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 1/2 cup thai (or japanese) eggplant, roll cut
  •  8 oz tofu, cubed
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

Directions:

  1. Mix the coconut milk with the curry powder and set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a wok over medium heat.  Once hot add the chiles, broccoli, eggplant, and tofu.  Cook the vegetables until slightly tender.  Pour the coconut milk curry mixture over top, and mix well.  Cover and reduce heat to low and simmer for 15minutes.  
  3. Remove from heat, add the tomatoes, and then season to taste.  Serve over coconut rice or thin rice noodles!

This dish is also fantastic as lunch the next day, but be warned that the spice level can increase as the flavors further blend.

Quick Weeknight Recipes · Vegan

History Repeating

Curried Chickpea Stew
curriedChicPeaSoup
This past weekend, Joe and I ventured down to my old college for my 5th College Reunion.  I had an amazing time seeing friends from college and it was great seeing how far some of them have come, both in their personal and professional lives.  While the path I’m on is not the one I planned out while I was in college I am glad it’s the path I’m on, even if I don’t use my degree every day.  I also think that many of the experiences I had in college are what allow me to succeed at the job that I do, there isn’t much of a difference between dealing with crazy frat boy and crazy gov’t people.  I’ve also grown appreciative of all the research I did for my Biology degree, very useful for hunting down recipes and for planning various events.  I guess this all goes to show that while things don’t always go to plan they do eventually work out one way or another.
This recipe also falls into the category of eventually working out and has gone thru many evolutions.  The first time I tried doing something with chickpeas and curry was after suffering a horrible allergy attack from eating Chana Masala.  I wanted to find something with that taste but without all the lemon.  This essentially became the base for my chickpea stew, however I always knew that it was missing something.  Fast forward many years later and I found a recipe for something called Captain Stew.  I married the two recipes and this was the end result, YUMMY!
Ingredients:
1 tbsp veg. oil
2 cups onion, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp Garam Marsala
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups carrot, diced
2 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1 cup veg. stock
1 1/2 cups water
Directions:
1. Heat a large dutch oven over medium high heat.  Add the oil and fully coat the pan.  Add the onions, and cook 5 minutes then add the Garam Marsala along with the garlic.  Stir well. 
2.  Add the water, stock, carrots, chickpeas, and tomatoes.  Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and cover.  Simmer for 20minutes.  Serve in bowls and top with greek yogurt (optional).  This can also be served over brown rice or with some crusty bread.