Tag Archives: vegetarian

Colourful Quinoa Salad

23 Jun
Salad with quinoa, cucumber, tomato, carrots and green onion.

Salad with quinoa, cucumber, tomato, carrots and green onion.

  • 1 cup quinoa, cook as instructed
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 spring onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup english cucumber, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 small tomato, finely chopped
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Uncooked quinoa.

Uncooked quinoa.

Finely chopped english cucumber, tomatoes and green onions; and a carrot.

Finely chopped english cucumber, tomatoes and green onions; and a carrot.

1. For a warm salad, combine all the ingredients immediately after the quinoa is finished cooking. Enjoy!

2. For a cold salad, allow the quinoa to cool before combining all the ingredients and chill for at least an 1 hour in the fridge.

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Homemade Ketchup

22 Apr
Homemade ketchup stored in a pickling jar.

Homemade ketchup stored in a pickling jar.

The following recipe makes approximately 1.5 cups of ketchup.

  • 6 oz tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar (add another tablespoon of sugar if you prefer sweeter ketchup)
Ketchup mixture simmering in a sauce pan.

Ketchup mixture simmering in a sauce pan.

1. Add all the ingredients to a sauce pan.

2. Place sauce pan on burner and combine well.

3. Allow the mixure to begin boiling.

4. Once mixture is boiling, turn down heat so that the sauce is simmering.

5. Allow the sauce to simmer for approximately 20 minutes. Stir often.

6. Remove from burner and allow ketchup to completely cool before storing in a air tight container. Refrigerate.

Roasted potato wedges with homemade ketchup.

Roasted potato wedges with homemade ketchup.

Coconut Thai Curry Noodle Soup

19 Mar
Coconut Thai (red) curry soup with noodles and zucchini.

Coconut Thai (red) curry soup with noodles and zucchini.

The following recipe serves two.

  • 1 can (400 mL) coconut milk
  • 2 to  3 tbsps thai curry paste (depends on your spice preference)
  • 1 to 2 tbsp oil (canola, vegetable, sunflower, etc.)
  • zucchini, thickly sliced (any type of vegetable can be used, eg. sugar peas, asparagus, spinach, bok choy, bean sprouts, napa cabbage, snow peas, carrots, bean sprouts, shitake mushrooms, baby corn, string beans, etc.)
  • a handful of cilantro, washed and tied
  • half an onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp of lime zest
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 3 to 4 cups of low sodium broth (chicken, beef or vegetable)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 to 3 tbsps soy sauce
  • your choice of noodles, enough for two people (e.g. thin rice noodles, vermicelli, yakisoba noodles, udon noodles, etc.) TIP: soak the noodles in boiling hot water to remove any starches and oil. Soaking time depends on the style of noodle.
  • green onion, 2 sprig, finely chopped (optional)
  • sliced almonds (optional)

1. Heat  a large deep pot on high. Once hot, add in oil, onions, garlic and lime zest.

2. Cook until garlic is brown, then add in coconut milk, thai curry paste and brown sugar. Combine well.

3. Add in broth and an equal amount of water and the cilantro and soy sauce. Bring to a gently boil. Simmer for approximately 20 minutes.

4. Remove the cilantro bundle.

5. Add in noodles and zuchinni.

6. Once noodles and zuchinni are soft, turn off heat and add in lime juice and green onions.

7. Dish out into two large bowls and if so desired, garnish with (toasted) sliced almonds.

There is a lot of variation in this recipe. Here are some suggestions: add 1 to 3 tbsps of fish sauce; sautee in some tofu, pieces of chicken or whole shrimp; simmer the soup broth additionally with lemon grass and ginger; add a splash of sesame oil at the end.

Thai Curry Glass Noodles with Tofu

29 Jan
Glass noodles with vegetables and tofu.

Glass noodles with a thai curry coconut sauce and vegetables with tofu.

  • 3 bundles of glass noodles*, soaked in boiling hot water for 15min to 20 min, drain well
  • 200g firm tofu, cut into large cubes
  • a handful of cilantro (include the stems), finely chopped
  • a handful of parsley (include the stems), finely chopped
  • 2 to 4 tbsps soy sauce
  • 1 can (400mL) coconut milk
  • 2 to 3 tbsps thai curry paste
  • 1 small bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (or substituting with ginger would also be ideal)
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 sprig of green onion, chopped (optional)

1. Heat a wok on high.

2. Add in oil, onions, peppers and garlic. Sautee on medium heat until onions and peppers are soft (about 5 minutes).

3. Add the cream portion of the coconut milk, curry paste, parsley, cilantro and sugar.  Combine well.

Coconut sauce with cilantro, parsely, peppers, onions and tofu.

Coconut sauce with cilantro, parsely, peppers, onions and tofu.

4. Once the sauce begins to simmer,  add in tofu and 2 tbsps soy sauce. Cook until tofu is heated through.

5. Add in noodles, lime juice and another splash of soy sauce.  Mix well.

Glass noodles in sauce with soy.

Glass noodles in sauce with soy.

6. If the noodles are dry, gradually add in the liquid portion of the coconut milk until the noodles are of desired consistency.

7. When noodles are done, add in green onions and enjoy.  Serves two generously.

*Glass noodles are also known as cellophane noodles, thread noodles or crystal noodles.

Coconut Thai Curry Spinach

8 Jan
Coconut Thai curry spinach.

Coconut Thai curry spinach.

  • about 454 g baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1 can (400mL)  coconut milk
  • 1 to 2 tbsps of thai curry paste
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 small onion, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • soy sauce and/or sea salt (for seasoning)

1. Heat a large saute pan on high.

2. Once hot, scoop the coconut cream from the top of the can and add to the pan.

3. Add in garlic, ginger, curry paste and onions.  Turn down to medium heat.

Coconut Thai curry sauce with onions.

Coconut Thai curry sauce with onions.

4. Cook until onions are soft (about 5 minutes).

5. Add the remaining contents of the coconut can.

6. When the liquid begins to bubble, add in spinach gradually.  Stir often.

7. Add in sugar and 1 tbsp of soy sauce (or a sprinkle of salt). Mix well.

8. Allow spinach to simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes or until majority of the liquid has evaporated.  The spinach will turn a deeper green and its volume will reduce significantly.

9. Finished. This dish goes well with a bowl of steamed rice.  Enjoy.

Spinach and coconut Thai sauce simmering. As the dish simmers, the spinach will turn a deeper green and reduce in volume.

Spinach and coconut Thai sauce simmering. As the dish simmers, the spinach will turn a deeper green and reduce in volume.

 

Homemade Pizza

27 Nov

Homemade pizza. Toppings are bacon, cremini mushrooms and kumato tomatoes.

The following makes two thin crust pizzas. The original recipe can be found in the book “Cooking: A Commonsense Guide”.

Dough

  • 1 sachet dry yeast (about 8 grams)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2.5 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup warm water

Two pizza doughs. Roughly shaped into a rectangle.

1. In a small bowl add the yeast, sugar and salt to the warm water. Cover. Leave for ten minutes or until foamy.

2. In a large bowl, add flour and make a well.  Add the yeast mixture to the hole and gradually add flour to yeast mixture to form dough.

3. Place dough on a clean floured surface. Knead the dough for several minutes.

4. Split the dough into two halves. Roll each dough ball into approximately 1/4 inch thickness. (Flour your rolling device, be it a rolling pin, jar, glass tumbler, etc.)

5. On a lined baking sheet, brush 1 tbsp of oil to prevent dough from sticking and to help form a golden crust. Place pizza dough on tray and tuck in edges to form a crust. Repeat for other pizza dough.

Sauce:

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 14 oz crushed tomatos
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp sugar

Pizza sauce.

1. In a pot, add onions and oil. Cook until onions are soft (about 5 minutes).

2. Add in remaining ingredients. Simmer on low to medium heat until sauce thickens to a consistency similar to pizza sauce (about 15 to 20 minutes).

3. Spread half of the sauce onto each pizza dough.

Pizza dough with sauce.

Assembly:

1. Add a layer of cheese to the pizza and sauce. (I used a mixture of grated cheddar and mozzarella.)

2. Add the toppings of your choice (e.g. pepperoni, pineapple, feta cheese, olives, shrimp, ham, bacon, mushrooms, green peppers, tomatoes, onions, ground beef, etc.). TIP: Do not overload pizza with toppings to allow for more even baking in the oven.

3. Top with a light layer of more cheese.

4. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in a 415º oven or until cheese is melted, bubbling and golden brown.

5. Let cool at least 5 minutes before eating.

Pizza imediately before baking.

Pizza immediately after baking.

The second pizza, which has bacon, green peppers, onions and tomatoes as its toppings.

A special thank you to Andrew who made much of the pizzas.

Pumpkins

31 Oct

Jack-O-Latern.

Happy pumpkin carving! Here’s a quick pumpkin carving food thought: instead of discarding all the pumpkin insides, keep the seeds and make a tasty pumpkin seed snack. Here’s how.

1. Clean the seeds thoroughly and remove any membrane.

2. Pat the seeds dry as much as possible.

3. Place in a single layer on a lined flat baking sheet.

4. Put into a preheated 375º degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes. The length of time will depend on how well the seeds were dried.

5. When done, sprinkle a bit of sea salt over the pumpkin seeds and enjoy.

Happy Halloween!