De Ma Cuisine

Monday

20

April 2015

0

COMMENTS

Warm Beet and Walnut Salad

Written by , Posted in Dairy-Free, Dinner, Fruit, Gluten Free, Grains, Herbs, Lunch, Main Dishes, Nuts, Potlucks, Quick and Easy, Quinoa, Rice, Salads, Sides, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

 WarmBeetWalutSalad-11

It’s spring. But, here in L.A. it seems like the weather’s not sure what it wants to do. One week it feels like summer, the next, we’re back to our winter weather.

But, this salad can be eaten rain or shine.

It’s a simple one. And it goes kinda like this…

You start with a grain: Quinoa, brown rice, bulgur wheat, wild rice, or couscous.

You choose your veggies (any or all): Beets, carrots, greens, tomatoes (ok, technically a fruit), or summer squash.

Then you choose your add ins: Walnuts, almonds, raisins, apples, pumpkin seeds, or sunflower seeds.

Fresh herbs are added: Parsley, basil, or thyme.

And you’re ready to eat!

WarmBeetWalutSalad-2

Since we get beets year round here, we can eat this hearty salad whenever we want. I had golden beets on hand, but red beets would work well too.

WarmBeetWalutSalad-3

I love the feeling of sunshine that golden beets bring to my kitchen. They’re such a happy root veggie.

WarmBeetWalutSalad-5

Veggies are cooked in a skillet – easy! Beets are a pretty dense root veggie, so be sure to give them enough time to cook (20 minutes or so seemed to do the trick for me).

WarmBeetWalutSalad-6

I love raw walnuts, so they were a perfect choice. Some raisins and apples added a bit of sweetness to the already sweet beets and carrots. Sweet, but not too.

WarmBeetWalutSalad-7

For my grain, I chose quinoa. Packed with protein, it seemed like a great fit for a vegan dish.

WarmBeetWalutSalad-8

Some quality olive oil and a good squeeze of lemon brighten and round out the dish.

WarmBeetWalutSalad-9

The finished product is a warm salad. The beets warm the add ins slightly, while the add ins cool the cooked veggies. You could also refrigerate and eat it a few hours later.

Quick and easy to prepare, packed with nutrients and protein, this one was a hit at our house. Even Tim, who isn’t crazy about beets, thought it was really good.

Happy Eating!

Warm Beet and Walnut Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 3-4

Warm Beet and Walnut Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 C water or vegetable stock
  • 1/2 C uncooked quinoa (rinsed) (or couscous, wild rice, bulgur wheat, or brown rice with appropriate amount of water)
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 C golden beets (red beets would work great too), peeled and chopped
  • 1 C carrots (or summer squash), chopped
  • to taste salt
  • to taste pepper
  • 3 C greens (like spinach, chard, or kale), chopped
  • sprinkle cayenne
  • 1 t fresh parsley, chopped (divided)
  • 1 t fresh basil, chopped (divided)
  • 2 T raisins, chopped
  • 1/4 C apple, chopped
  • 1 C walnuts, chopped
  • 1/2 C pumpkin seeds (optional)
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 2 T lemon juice
  • lemon wedges, for serving

Instructions

  1. Bring the water to a boil. Add the quinoa. Bring back to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for about 15 minutes, or until done. (If using other grains, cook according to package's instructions.)
  2. Heat a skillet over medium-low. Add olive oil. When the oil is hot add the beets through pepper. Cook for about 20 minutes (or until veggies are tender), adding greens after about 10-15 minutes (depending on type of greens - more tender greens will require less time to cook).
  3. Remove skillet from the heat. Stir in half of the herbs (reserving the rest for topping), and then raisins through lemon juice, and cooked quinoa. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
  4. Serve warm, at room temperature, or cold, with a lemon wedge for squeezing over.
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/warm-beet-and-walnut-salad/

Thursday

16

April 2015

0

COMMENTS

Bacon and Feta Frittatas

Written by , Posted in Baking, Breakfast, Brunch, Cheese, Condiments, Dinner, Eggs, Fruit, Gluten Free, Herbs, Lunch, Main Dishes, Meat, Pork, Potatoes, Vegetables

BaconFetaFrittata-11

Many of my favorite foods are those loaded with veggies and a little something else. I do this with pasta, soups, and stir fry. In this case, it was with bacon, eggs, and a little bit of feta cheese.

BaconFetaFrittata-1

This is a use what’s in season type of meal. I had asparagus, turnip, kohlrabi, carrot, and collard greens on hand. But, you could use bell peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms, potatoes, radishes, and any other greens that sound good to you.

BaconFetaFrittata-4

I cooked the bacon and when it was done and resting on a plate, I added some olive oil to the bacon grease in the skillet. If you want to wipe out the skillet after the bacon is done, that’s cool too. Add some butter or extra olive oil instead of the bacon grease. Don’t want to use bacon at all? That’s fine. I like the crunch that it adds to the frittata, but it’s not absolutely essential.

BaconFetaFrittata-2

While the veggies cook, whisk together some of your favorite eggs with a bit of milk. I needed just three eggs, since there were so many veggies. You can adjust the recipe according to your needs, keeping in mind that the cooking time may change depending on the number of eggs used.

BaconFetaFrittata-5

The eggs and veggies are combined and some feta is added. Like pretty much everything else in this recipe, you can change up the cheese if you want. Gouda would be a yummy choice, if you’re not using feta.

BaconFetaFrittata-7

Once the frittatas are done (I like to use a food thermometer to take the guesswork out of it), they get to stand around and rest for about 10 minutes. In that time, you can whisk up a lemony dressing that will be drizzled over the top.

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BaconFetaFrittata-10

And then finally, it’s time for a bite. With that crunchy bacon, delicious veggies, and flecks of feta, it’s as delicious as I’d hoped it would be.

BaconFetaFrittata-12

Frittatas are perfect any time of the day, any day of the week. They’re especially good when shared with a loved one. But, if you’re having a meal by yourself, the second frittata can be refrigerated (or frozen and thawed in the fridge over night) and reheated another day.

Happy Eating!

Bacon and Feta Frittatas

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 43 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 3 minutes

Yield: 2

Bacon and Feta Frittatas

Ingredients

  • 4-5 slices bacon
  • bacon grease (or 1 T butter)
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 3/4 C kohlrabi (or potatoes, fennel bulb, or mushrooms), chopped
  • 3/4 C turnip (or radish), chopped
  • 1 1/2 C onion, chopped
  • 3/4 C carrot, chopped
  • to taste salt
  • to taste pepper
  • 1/2 t dried thyme (or 1/2 T fresh)
  • 1/2 t dried basil (or 1/2 T fresh)
  • 1 C asparagus (or peas), stems snapped off and discarded, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 C greens, chopped
  • 1 T fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 T fresh dill, chopped
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 C milk
  • to taste salt
  • to taste pepper
  • 1/2 C feta, crumbled
  • Dressing: 1/2 t honey
  • 1 t dijon mustard
  • 1/4 C lemon juice
  • 1 t fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 t fresh dill, chopped
  • to taste salt
  • to taste pepper
  • 2 T olive oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375F. Place two greased 5" (diameter) by 2" (tall) ramekins or oven safe dishes on a baking sheet and into the oven while it preheats.
  2. Cook bacon to desired crispness. Remove from skillet and place on a paper towel lined plate. Crumble when cool enough to handle.
  3. Heat bacon skillet. Add olive oil (and butter if you've wiped it out and discarded the bacon grease). When it's hot, add the kohlrabi through basil (if you're using dried herbs). Cook covered over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add asparagus through dill (adding basil and thyme if you're using fresh) and cook for 3 minutes more. Remove from heat and taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
  4. Whisk eggs with milk, salt, and pepper. Stir in veggies and feta. Pour into the hot, greased ramekins (still on the baking sheet). Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the eggs are set and have come to 160F. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
  5. While frittatas rest, whisk together dressing ingredients, streaming in the olive oil last, while you whisk. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
  6. Serve frittatas topped with bacon and dressing.
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/bacon-and-feta-frittatas/

Monday

13

April 2015

0

COMMENTS

Vegan Tofu Fried Quinoa

Written by , Posted in Dairy-Free, Dinner, Fruit, Gluten Free, Grains, Leftovers, Lunch, Main Dishes, One Dish Dinners, Quick and Easy, Quinoa, Rice, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

VeganTofuFriedQuinoa-6

We don’t eat a lot of meat. We enjoy it, but it’s expensive, and we’ve found that there are plenty of other ways to get enough protein in our diet. So the meals containing meat are few and far between, and we fill in the gaps with meals like this take on Fried Rice.

VeganTofuFriedQuinoa-1

It starts with some seasonal veggies. Right now we’ve got greens like kale, chard, and mei qing choi. There are carrots, snap peas, and spring onions. And we’ve got the most delicious spring onions.

If you wanted to adapt this to suit another season, you could try some of these options:

Spring: Radishes, green beans, asparagus, fava beans, garlic scapes, or kohlrabi.

Summer: Zucchini/summer squash, tomatoes, bell peppers, eggplant, or sinqua.

Fall: Beets, arugula, cabbage, celery, chard, fennel, or radicchio.

Winter: Broccoli, cauliflower, winter squash, bok choy, mustard greens, or daikon radishes.

VeganTofuFriedQuinoa-2

No matter the veggies, it’s going to come together super quickly, so I’d suggest having all of the components ready to go before you begin cooking. Stir fry type dishes generally tend to cook over pretty high heat, which means they need to be stirred almost constantly. This doesn’t leave time for chopping up the next ingredients while the first ones cook.

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I’d made some quinoa the day before, and used the leftovers in this dish. You could also use bulgur wheat, rice noodles, or regular brown rice (cook according to the package’s directions).

VeganTofuFriedQuinoa-4

The quinoa takes the place of brown rice, since it has a bit more protein. The tofu mimics the egg, to make it vegan. I asked Tim if he could tell that there weren’t eggs in here. He said that it wasn’t noticeable.

VeganTofuFriedQuinoa-5

Like a lot of things, I enjoy this served with a wedge of lemon to squeeze over top. The brightness that it adds is the perfect way to complete this dish.

Happy Eating!

Vegan Tofu Fried Quinoa

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 4

Vegan Tofu Fried Quinoa

Ingredients

  • 2 T oil
  • 1 C snap peas (or green beans), strings removed, chopped
  • 1 C carrots, chopped
  • 1/2 C fennel (or celery), chopped
  • 1 C onion, chopped
  • 2 C greens, chopped
  • sprinkle ginger
  • to taste salt
  • to taste pepper
  • sprinkle cayenne
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 2 T soy sauce or gluten-free aminos
  • 2 T rice vinegar
  • 1 C quinoa (or bulgur wheat, brown rice, or rice noodles) (cooked)
  • 7 oz. tofu (firm), drained and crumbled
  • 1/4 C green or spring onions, chopped
  • 1/2 to 1 C microgreens
  • lemon wedges, for serving

Instructions

  1. Heat a wok, add oil over medium-high heat. Add snap peas through cayenne and cook for 3-5 minutes, turning constantly.
  2. Add greens through microgreens (if microgreens are very delicate, wait to add them until 1 minute before you finish cooking) and cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly.Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
  3. Serve with lemon wedges for squeezing.
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/vegan-tofu-fried-quinoa/

Thursday

9

April 2015

0

COMMENTS

How to Pair Foods

Written by , Posted in How To

GrilledCheeseFriedEgg

For some reason, I like to have three components to each meal. I don’t know why. Maybe because I grew up in a meat+starch+veggie household? I don’t adhere to that exact equation anymore, but my variation is probably closely linked.

Our plates often have whatever the main dish is, plus a large portion of vegetables. Sometimes there’s a starch in there, dividing the main portion in to a smaller serving.

Here are a few examples of some meals that we’ve eaten recently and how I came up with the parings.

RoastedFennelAsparagusMache-6

I like to start with whatever portion of the meal I’ve been inspired by. If it’s asparagus that’s the star, then I’ll figure out what would go well with it. The asparagus is a bit crunchy, so the texture of the bulgur wheat was a nice addition. The fennel, when roasted, was tender and almost creamy. And the bright crunch of the mâche finished it off, making for a complete meal.

PastaWithFriedEgg-9

In this pasta dish (the pasta being ribbons of sweet potatoes and greens), I topped it with a fried egg with the yolk still runny. When we cut into the yolk, it would create a sort of creamy sauce for the pasta.

GrilledCheeseVeggies

With something as simple as a Grilled Cheese Sandwich, I like to pair it with things like raw veggies (sometimes with dip) and fruit. Their cold, crisp crunch is a nice contrast to the hot, crispy sandwich. There might be soup, for dipping, or a cold glass of milk.

KohlrabiStew-7

When we eat soups, there’s usually some sort of bread as the side. Then maybe a glass of wine becomes the third portion.

In general, I like the three (or four) components to bring something unique to the dish. We wouldn’t want to have everything crunchy (our jaws wouldn’t thank us) or mushy, sweet or savory, rich or bright. We want some variety. That’s why I like to eat a juicy Burger with crispy French Fries, or a Stir Fry topped with nuts, or a Grilled Cheese Sandwich with Tomato Soup and a side of Salt and Vinegar Potato Chips. Well rounded meals are the best.

SimpleSummerSalad-4

So, how do we do this? Well, some of it comes with experience. Trial and error has taught me that a big salad needs more than just lettuce and zucchini. The textures are too similar. I want some crunch from nuts and seeds, maybe croutons too. And some bright citrus will go a long way towards making a boring salad a great one.

Beyond texture, there are the flavors to think about. If you’re serving something super savory, a sweet note might be good. Think a Grilled Steak. Just on its own, sure, it would be delicious. But, what if you served it alongside a Butter Lettuce Salad with a dressing made of balsamic vinegar, honey, and olive oil. Then added some asparagus that’s been tossed with bright lemon juice… See what I did there? A meal has been transformed.

If you’re serving a Creamy Cauliflower Soup that’s so smooth and velvety, some crispy Cheddar Biscuits would be a great paring. Just regular bread could be fine. But, think about the two options: bread that’s pretty soft, which is essentially the same texture as the soup, or biscuits that have some crunch and bold cheddar flecks. I know that I’d prefer the latter.

You can also consider things like the color; what you want the dish to look like. It doesn’t matter to everyone, but some people have a hard time eating foods that are too bland looking (think cauliflower or oatmeal). So, simple things like some green herbs in a cauliflower soup, or raisins in oatmeal can make a big difference. It’s also said to be good for us to “eat the rainbow”, when it comes to fruits and veggies. So, adding a variety of colorful things to your meal can be a healthy way to add more fun to your plate.

VegetarianFlavorBible-2

In general, the key is to think about what you’re making. It doesn’t need to be overthought or fancy. Remember, grilled cheese? Being considerate of your food can lead to an overall better meal experience. Think contrast (flavor, texture, color) that compliments. When you end up with a variety of textures, complimentary flavors, and great colors on the plate, it’s sure to be a winning dish.

When in doubt, The Vegetarian Flavor Bible (or the original version The Flavor Bible) is a great resource for menu planning. After my knives and cast irons, it’s quite possibly my most oft used kitchen tool. And there’s always friends, family, or your social media community to go to for suggestions.

Happy Eating!

Monday

6

April 2015

0

COMMENTS

Warm Beet Salad with Fruit and Nuts

Written by , Posted in Cheese, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Fruit, Gluten Free, Herbs, Lunch, Nuts, Quick and Easy, Salads, Sides, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

SauteedBeetsRicottaNuts-5

It’s spring. It’s time for flip flops and tank tops, warm breezes and sunshine, and a change in fruits and veggies. But, before we get to all things spring, let’s compromise with winter a bit. Let’s ask her to stay a while longer before we rush in to summer.

SauteedBeetsRicottaNuts-1

I want to keep eating beets, oranges, and apples. But, I’m starting to crave salads and lighter foods. So, this dish is a happy medium.

SauteedBeetsRicottaNuts-2

Beets are sautéed in some olive oil with salt and pepper. Simple. They taste similar to the way they do when they’re roasted, with a little less crunch. But, they still retain that kinda crispy outside, tender inside quality that I love for food to take on.

SauteedBeetsRicottaNuts-4

Then the greens are added. I like the taste of beet greens. If you don’t have any on hand, kale, chard, or spinach would also work well.

SauteedBeetsRicottaNuts-3

After the greens are wilted down, all that’s left to do is drizzle everyone with a bit of dressing and add some toppings. Apples, oranges, nuts, and raisins were perfect. You can vary it depending on what’s in season and what you like. You could use fresh blackberries and grapefruit, or maybe some watermelon. You could use almonds, or switch them up for sunflower or pumpkin seeds.

SauteedBeetsRicottaNuts-6

I topped it with some ricotta and the dressing has honey. If you want to make this a vegan dish, you could try some silken tofu and sweeten things up with maple syrup instead of honey. Easy changes to make.

SauteedBeetsRicottaNuts-7

This one feels simple and light. Bright, but with depth. Perfect for a warm spring day.

Happy Eating!

Warm Beet Salad with Fruit and Nuts

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 13 minutes

Total Time: 23 minutes

Yield: 2

Warm Beet Salad with Fruit and Nuts

Ingredients

  • 1 T olive oil
  • 2 beets, peeled and chopped
  • to taste salt
  • to taste pepper
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 1 T balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 t honey or maple syrup
  • to taste salt
  • to taste pepper
  • 1/4 to 1/2 t fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 bunch beet greens, de-stemmed and torn
  • 1/4 C orange, chopped
  • 1/4 C apple, chopped
  • 2 T almonds (or pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds), chopped
  • 2 T raisins, chopped
  • 1/4 C ricotta (optional) (or silken tofu - sweetened, if desired)

Instructions

  1. Heat skillet, add olive oil, add beets, salt, and pepper. Cook over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, or until the beets are tender, stirring occasionally. Add the greens and wilt down, about 3 minutes.
  2. Whisk lemon juice through parsley, stream in olive oil and whisk. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
  3. Top beets and greens with fruit, nuts/seeds, and raisins. Drizzle with dressing and top with ricotta/tofu.
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/warm-beet-salad-fruit-nuts/