Eggplant Parmesan

I love eggplant Parmesan. I usually make my mother’s vegan version of the recipe. But I felt like trying something new, so I tried a recipe I found on the ny times. I used vegan Parmesan, which worked well. But the recipe had issues. The big issue was that there just wasn’t enough sauce. It calls for 1 28 ounce can of tomatoes. I think it probably needs 1.5x or 2x that. The other issue was that the eggplant didn’t get cooked all the way through, but since my oven is broken, I’m not going to blame the recipe for this. I was able to fix it by pouring tomato sauce over the dish, covering it, and cooking it on the stove until it was cooked through. It made a little mess, but was quite yummy. I honestly think I could make eggplant parmesan without using the oven. And since I really try not to use my oven in he summer, that is quite an appealing prospect. I’m going to try it an report back. I also want to experiment with a gluten free replacement for the breadcrumbs. Lots to try.

Baked Eggs in Cream

Usually when I make baked eggs, I make them in a tomato-based sauce. This recipe for baked eggs in a creme based sauce seemed intriguing, and used a lot of fresh herbs that I had on hand in my garden. For the herbs I used a mixture of parsley, basil, and scallions. The recipe also gives you the option of adding veggies. I added kale, which worked quite well. It also says you can use either half and half or heavy creme. Since I can only find lactose free half and half, that is what I used and it worked fine. This is a very tasty and easy recipe that can easily be adapted to whatever veggies and herbs you have on hand. A good weeknight dinner.

Leek Top Risotto

I love leeks, and I’ve never been convinced that anyone should throw away leek tops (also known as leek leaves). But most recipes only call for using the white and light green parts. So I’ve created several of my own recipes to use the tops. I’ve found that ,with a little extra cooking time, they melt in your mouth. Here’s my recipe for a risotto that uses only leek tops. You could certainly add the leek bottoms if you have them, but I usually have leeks on hand because I used the bottoms in another recipe.

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil

Tops of about 5 leeks sliced horizontally in 1/4 inch strips (approximately 3 cups)

1 cup arborio rice

1/2 cup dry wine (I use red or white, whatever I have on hand)

1-1 1/2 tsp table salt (I use 1 1/4)

3-4 cups vegetable stock

1/2 cup frozen peas

1/2 cup grated parmigiano cheese (leave this out to make vegan)

3 tablespoon chopped flat leaf parsley

Salt and black pepper, to taste.

Instructions:

1. In a heavy bottomed pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the leeks and cook until soft, about 5-7 minutes.

2. Add the rice and cook over medium-high heat for about one minute, stirring to coat with the oil.

3. Add the wine and stir until the wine is absorbed.

4. Add 1 tsp of salt

5. Turn the heat down to medium-low. Add the stock, a half cup at a time, stirring regularly until most of the liquid is absorbed before adding the next half cup. Stir until most of the liquid is absorbed. Repeat this process until the mixture is creamy and a bit loose; the rice should still have some chew to it. Add the peas before you add the last 1/2 cup of stock. The process will take about 20 minutes.

4. Turn off the heat and stir in the chopped parsley and the grated cheese. Season with salt and pepper.

Fettuccine al Limone with Asparagus

I was looking for a very decadent pasta recipe to break Passover with. Bonus points if I could use my asparagus from the garden. This recipe ticked both boxes. I love a lemony pasta, so this sounded really good. I used a fancy fettuccine instead of spaghetti because I don’t really like spaghetti.

So…when you say you want something decedent…be careful what you wish for. This recipe calls for 2/3 cup (2/3 cup!!!!???) of olive oil. I cut the olive oil down to 1/2 cup, but it was still an absurd amount of olive oil. I think 1/3 cup would have been fine. That said, the recipe was very yummy and a great indulgent way to use garden asparagus and bask in post-Passover carbs. Still, I don’t think it’s likely I’ll make it again. Just can’t stand to use that much olive oil.

http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/spaghetti-al-limone-with-asparagus

Broccoli Salad with Yogurt Dressing

I needed to make some food out of what I had in the refrigerator. I had broccoli. I had nuts and seeds. I had yogurt. I had raisins. And I had onions. So I found this recipe from page 92 of The Greek Vegetarian. It wasn’t bad. I don’t know if I’d make it again. But for a salad essentially made from the apparently strange combination of broccoli, raisins, and yogurt, it was surprisingly edible. I don’t know if I’d necessarily go out of my way to make it again. The onion was a little too overpowering but the yogurt helped some.

Rice, Beans, and Peas

This recipe is from page 29 of Fresh Food Fast. I LOVE it and make it often. It’s easy and tasty enough to eat all week. the original recipe is very starchy and cheesy. I’ve adapted it to lower the calories and increase the veggie content. Here are my ratios:

11/2 cups basmati rice

1/2 tsp sea salt

2 tbsp olive oil (I skip the butter altogether)

1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

11/2 medium onion

1 cup dried kidney beans precooked (I use dry beans instead of canned)

2 cups frozen peas (I use frozen instead of fresh)

1/5 pound monterey jack cheese

1 tsp cumin seeds

Black Bean and Zucchini Quesadillas

This recipe from page 85 of Peter Barley’s Fresh Food Fast is a standby for me and a great way to use up a ton of zucchini from my garden. The mixture is super fast to make and can be premade, allowing for super fast dinner all week. I make a few adjustments to up the veggie factor and lower calories:

  1. Black Beans: The original recipe calls for 2 cans or 3.5 cups of black beans. I make the recipe from dry beans and use 4 cups cooked.
  2. Zucchini: The original recipe calls for 2 lbs zucchini, which should be about 4 cups pressed and shredded. I use 6 cups.
  3. Cheese: The original recipes calls for 12 ounces Monterrey jack cheese. I use 8 ounces.
  4. Tortillas: The recipe calls for flour. I use whole wheat.

My sister has transcribed the recipe on her blog the Captious Vegetarian. Here’s the link:

https://captious.wordpress.com/2006/07/06/black-bean-zucchini-quesadillas-b/