De Ma Cuisine

Quick and Easy Archive

Thursday

26

March 2020

0

COMMENTS

Black Bean and Cheese Quesadillas

Written by , Posted in Appetizers, Beans, Cheese, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Gluten Free, Herbs, Kid-Friendly, Leftovers, Legumes, Lunch, Main Dishes, Meat, Quick and Easy, Rice, Vegetables, Vegetarian

There’s a little more time to think these days. Sometimes my brain gets overrun with thoughts about the what-ifs, the economy, the future. This is weird. It’s like nothing I’ve ever experienced before. It’s the only thing we want to talk about. For good reason. I’ve been trying to distract myself with cookbook writing, furniture rearranging, and, as our supplies dwindle a bit, using what we have well, and returning to a lifestyle where we’re making things from scratch again.

We usually have a well stocked pantry. I rely on things like beans and tuna and pasta. I love having jars of homemade jam, dilly beans, and dill pickles to get us through winter. And I almost always have at least one extra jar of Sir Kensington’s Chipotle or Sriracha mayo on hand. A few weeks before COVID-19 became a pandemic we stocked up a little more. We set aside some food in a plastic bin that we can grab and take with us in an emergency. There isn’t a can opener in there, so we have no way to eat it. But, it’s there if we need it. And between the pantry and what’s in cold storage, I think we could eat for two or three months using just what we have on hand. I think many people have done the same. Our pantries are stocked. We’re ready to ride this thing out at home. But, what to do with all those supplies now that we’re here… There’s the open can, eat with spoon option. Provided you didn’t forget the can opener. But, maybe we could try something a little more fun?

Today, we had Black Bean and Cheese Quesadillas. They could be eaten as a very basic quesadilla. Beans, cheese, tortilla, and something to dip them in. Great. But, you could also make them into something more.

To start, Tim made the flour tortillas from scratch. We are ruined. We should never buy store bought tortillas again. You can use corn tortillas too. Either way you’re winning.

We mashed up some black beans with some taco seasoning (Tim makes this from scratch too) and a pinch of salt. Easy. You could switch it up and use pinto or cannellini beans or even chickpeas.

We added colby and cheddar cheese. You could use queso fresco or try a great vegan cheese if you like. I like colby for the meltyness and cheddar for the taste. If we had pepper jack I’d add that for some spice.

Leftover chicken, pork, or beef? Add it. Some crispy bacon left from BLTs? Perfect. I wanted leftover chicken in these quesadillas. But, we didn’t have any. Next time.

Jarred roasted bell peppers? Good idea. Scallions that are getting a little wilty in the fridge. Do it. Onions and fresh bell peps? Sauté and add.

Leftover rice from dinner last night? Reheat it and mix it in with the beans. Oh! You made chili for dinner? Plomp it onto the tortilla and top it with cheese. Save the cans of beans for another time. Fold. Heat. Done.

Have a little leftover cream cheese and no bagels to eat it with? Smear it on the tortilla before you top it with the beans. Add a little sprinkle of garlic powder for good measure.

There are a million ways to quesadilla. And a zillion ways to use your pantry treasures for good. Oh, and if you feel like you may have over bought, our local food banks are hurting right now. So, grab some sanitizer wipes, clean those cans, find your local food bank, and drop them off (while you know, social distancing) and help someone in need.

I’ve got lots more ways to use those pantry items creatively. If you want help, send me an email at demacuisine@racheloberg.com. I always love to talk about menu planning.

Happy Eating!

Black Bean and Cheese Quesadillas

Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 8 (8-inch) cooked flour or corn tortillas (for ours, Tim used the recipe for flour tortillas from America’s Test Kitchen’s Bread Illustrated cookbook. There’s an almost identical recipe here.)
  • 1 1/4 cups mashed black beans
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons taco seasoning
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt (Morton’s Kosher)
  • 1/2 cup grated colby or pepper jack cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • additional goodies: meat, rice, roasted bell peppers, scallions, green chiles, rice, cream cheese etc…

Directions

  1. Re-heat anything that needs to be very hot (like meat and rice), or cook any fresh veggies or meat that you want to add. Set it aside.
  2. Mix the black beans with taco seasoning and salt. Heat it over low until it’s hot, and then mash well. Divide the beans and the cheese between the tortillas. Top half of a tortilla with the black bean mixture and top with a bit of each type of cheese. Add any of the additional goodies, then fold the un-topped side of the tortilla over the topped side.
  3. Heat a skillet over medium. Add the quesadillas and cook, flipping once, until the tortillas are browned and a bit blistered, the filling is hot, and the cheese is melted.

A great paring for these quesadillas is corn chips with some homemade guacamole, made with avocados that you bought last week and forgot about.

Thursday

21

November 2019

1

COMMENTS

Roasted Brussels and Bacon

Written by , Posted in Dairy-Free, Dinner, Gluten Free, Holiday, Main Dishes, Meat, Pork, Quick and Easy, Roasting, Sides, Vegetables, Vegetarian

As I park the brussels in the oven, my mind goes to what I can do while they cook. I could start the laundry, do the dishes, plan next week’s Thanksgiving table decor… Dishes first. Then laundry. Then some quick pics of the dish before it inevitably becomes my lunch. Such is the life of a food writer who works from home. I’m constantly torn between the work and home to-do lists.

I can’t imagine that this is uncommon, for those who work from home. I have a dedicated office space. But, it’s in our house. So, I will hear the washer stop washing and know it’s time to change the load. I will see the full dishwasher and empty it.

This isn’t a complaint. I love working from home. I just need to be better at prioritizing work during work time, and home stuff during home time. I’m getting there. Slowly.

This dish is a mish mash of work and home. It may end up on our Thanksgiving table. But, I wanted to share it here in case you need some help with your menu. It’ll be great alongside the turkey and stuffing. But, it will also make a great, easy weeknight dinner. I might serve it alongside some polenta, or with a big salad and some cornbread.

If you’re gonna make it for Thanksgiving, it may be the easiest Thanksgiving side dish. Ever. Unless you’re a can of cranberry sauce lover. Are you? I’m not, but I’ll eat it gladly if it’s served to me.

I tossed some halved brussels sprouts with oil and salt. Then I added some chopped bacon. Optional, but delicious. If you don’t eat bacon, you could throw in some tempeh bacon at the end.

My brussles were a little old. Read: farty smelling. Opt for the freshest brussels possible.

I roasted them on high heat for a bit, then tossed them with some balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, and garlic.

After their tossing, they roasted for a bit longer. Then, done. I added a bit more balsamic, some spicy pepitas, and a bit of Maldon salt. It made for an easy, sweet and savory dish.

Happy Eating!

Roasted Brussels and Bacon

Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • 1.5 pounds brussels sprouts, ends trimmed, halved
  • 1 tablespoon oil (I used grapeseed)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 strips bacon, chopped (optional)
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • topping: more balsamic vinegar, Maldon salt, spicy pepitas

Directions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Toss the brussels sprouts with the oil and salt. Lay them cut-side down on a baking sheet and sprinkle the bacon around the pan. Roast until they’re beginning to brown, about 15 minutes.
  3. Whisk the balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, and garlic. Pour over the brussels sprouts and toss so they’re evenly coated and spaced out. Return to the oven and bake until sprouts and bacon are crispy, about 10 minutes more.
  4. Serve topped with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar, a sprinkle of Maldon salt, and some spicy pepitas.

Friday

8

November 2019

0

COMMENTS

Breakfast Burritos

Written by , Posted in Beans, Breakfast, Brunch, Cheese, Dairy-Free, Eggs, Gluten Free, Herbs, Kid-Friendly, Low Carb, Lunch, Main Dishes, Quick and Easy, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Monday was a very bad day. Tuesday morning started out kinda the same. Remnants of the crappy yesterday had stuck around. I hadn’t been this angry about something in a while.

My response to crisis is usually food. Food is comfort. That can lead to mindless eating. But, sometimes it leads to a really good breakfast that makes for a better start to the day.

I had cereal for lunch with zero plans for dinner. But, at least breakfast was good.

I started it simply, with chopped bell pepper and some minced cayenne pepper from the garden. I don’t know why they didn’t turn red. But, the seed pack said cayenne, so that’s what they are.

You could add a million other things in there too. Leftover potatoes, chopped onions, broccoli, leftovers from last night’s dinner… pretty much any veggies you think would be great probably will be.

After the peppers cooked in some oil for a few minutes I added some beans. I had pinto on hand. Yum. Black beans would also be great. And if all you have are kidney, or cannellini, use them! Why not?!

After the beans got hot, I added some whisked eggs. To keep it vegan, add in some crumbled tofu. Easy.

I took a pic of the tortilla being topped. It looked not amazing. The eggs had turned a bit grey from being cooked with everything else. If you want them to look amazing and yellow, scramble them separately. And then wash that extra dish. Yeah. No thank you. Less dishes is always the best option.

I laid out the tortillas, topped them with a handful of cheese, then the bean mixture. I used a mixture of cheddar and monterey jack, but if you’re going vegan, my favorite is Violife (just like cheddar or just like mozzarella shreds are great!). They got rolled up and then, the best part. A clean skillet with hot oil, cook that burrito on all sides until it’s shatteringly crisp. Yes please!

For topping or dipping, I like avocado with a bit of salt, and some sour cream. Tim likes salsa. Some people might like cilantro or some diced tomatoes.

However you serve them, they’re pretty quick and easy and make for a great start to the day.

Happy Eating!

Breakfast Burritos

Yields 3 burritos

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon oil (I used grapeseed)
  • 1/2 of a medium-sized bell pepper, diced (could also use: onion, cooked potatoes, cubanelle pepper, broccoli… whatever you have on hand)
  • 1/2 of a small hot pepper (I used cayenne), ribs and seeds removed, minced
  • pinch of salt
  • 1-14 ounce can of beans (pinto or black), drained
  • 4 eggs or half a brick of firm tofu
  • a little more salt
  • sprinkle of chili powder
  • handful of shredded cheese for each burrito, vegan (I like Violife) or conventional (I like a mixture of cheddar and monterey jack)
  • 3 burrito-sized tortillas (whole wheat, white, or gluten-free)
  • topping options: salsa, sour cream, cilantro, avocado, diced tomato, Sir Kensington’s Chipotle or Sriracha Mayo
  • a bit more oil, for crisping

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the bell pepper, hot pepper, and any other veggies, and a pinch of salt. Cook until the veggies are tender, about 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the beans and cook until the beans are heated through, about 4 minutes.
  2. Whisk the eggs, or crumble the tofu, in either case, with a pinch of salt and a sprinkle of chili powder. Add to the skillet with the beans and cook until eggs are set or tofu is hot (or you can cook the eggs separately if you want them to stay yellow – have fun washing that extra pan). Taste for seasoning.
  3. Top each tortilla with some cheese. Divide the bean filling between the tortillas and roll them up.
  4. In a clean skillet, add a bit of oil and crisp up the burritos, turning until they’re golden brown and delicious.
  5. Serve burritos cut in half with desired toppings.

Friday

1

November 2019

0

COMMENTS

Avocado Toast

Written by , Posted in Bread, Breakfast, Brunch, Dairy-Free, Fruit, Herbs, Lunch, Quick and Easy, Sandwiches, Snacks, Toasting, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

I was kinda slow to get on the avocado toast bandwagon. It was so trendy that it got annoying. But, now, I love it. Ugh. It’s probably not trendy anymore. Kinda like skinny jeans. I was late there too. Now I wear them and have no idea if they’re still in style.

You know the part in You’ve Got Mail where they’re stuck in the elevator and Parker Posey says “Arghh! Where are my Tic Tacs?!?!” I feel like her when I say “ugh”.

I usually top avocado toast with a fried egg. But, it didn’t sound good today. I’m trying to get better at listening to myself. Not just eating things because I want them or because they’re there. I’m also trying to be better at having grace for the times when I do. It’s ok. All things in moderation, including moderation… I think Julia Child said that. Gosh I like her!

I had a bruised avocado and a tomato with a bad spot. Perfect. They go well together. I try to keep lots of seeds on hand. They are perfect for topping things like oatmeal, salads, and to put in granola. They also go well on avocado toast.

Today I went for chia, sunflower, sesame, and flax. Plus I added some hemp hearts that have been in the freezer since the last house, but are somehow just fine.

I mixed everything together with a bit of olive oil, some omega 3 oil (Brando and I have started taking it daily), salt, pepper, and Italian hot salt. I had micro greens from a sample at work that went under the avocado mixture. Maldon salt that went over top. Perfect. Done.

Happy Eating!

Avocado Toast

Serves 2

You don’t really need a recipe. Use this as a loose guideline.

Ingredients

  • 2 slices bread, toasted
  • 1-2 avocados, mashed (I can eat a whole one myself)
  • 1 plum tomato (or whatever you have on hand), diced (seeded if it’s super juicy)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives
  • 1 tablespoon roasted and salted sunflower seeds
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon hemp hearts
  • 1 tablespoon flax seeds
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • pinch salt
  • pinch Italian Hot Salt (or cayenne)
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Omega 3 oil (optional)
  • a handful of microgreens
  • Maldon salt, for topping

Directions

  1. Toast bread.
  2. Mix together the avocado through omega 3 oil.
  3. Top the toasted bread with sprouts and the avocado mixture. Top with a pinch of Maldon salt.

Wednesday

23

October 2019

0

COMMENTS

Turkey and White Bean Chili

Written by , Posted in Beans, Dinner, Gluten Free, Herbs, Main Dishes, Meat, Poultry, Quick and Easy, Soups

This morning started with laying in bed for an hour trying to convince myself to get up. After a week of vacation, where the only worries were which chips to eat with lunch and which movie to watch next, the to dos and weight of real life have come crashing back down. It’s enough to make me want to stay in bed until noon. Like last week. 

I haven’t slept in until noon in years. 

I took the week off from everything but cooking and the dishes. I didn’t work, I didn’t workout, I didn’t go to bed early. I needed a mental and physical break. I had our week’s meals planned, so all I had to do was follow along, or just eat the twelve bags of chips that we’d bought. 

I’d planned to make Julia Child’s Boeuf Bourguignon on Sunday, to eat while we watched Julie and Julia. It was perfection. Not just the dish, which is always the best meal I’ve ever made, but the movie itself. 

It reminded me that I’m passionate about food. That I want more than drudgery, whatever that means. It’s easy to get caught up in the everyday, every week, exhausted race to eat and go to bed so I can do it all again tomorrow. I was reminded that I want more than this. 

I don’t know what that looks like. But, I was inspired to figure it out. And then I woke up this morning. A bit depressed, with a headache, not wanting to start the day well, with a workout and some quiet coffee and journaling time. 

Vacation is good. It’s necessary. We take lots of breaks throughout the year. We’re not go go go people. We live a slow and meaningful, simple life. But even that feels exhausting after vacation. 

I got up. An hour late. I worked out. I wrote this post on my phone while I did. I had coffee and I journaled. I got stuff from the to do list done. I made turkey and white bean chili. But, still, my anxieties remain. I have all these ideas that make me feel like I’m staring into a murky pond at something that might be glimmering at the bottom. It could be a beautiful copper pot (who needs a treasure chest of gold anyways?!), or just a piece of glass that’s gonna cut my foot when I wade in. Will the waters part so I can see before I step? Probably not. It’s that thin line between irresponsibility and faith. 

Maybe it’s time to jump. 

(Uh, I told you I made chili. Here’s the recipe.)

Happy Eating!

Turkey and White Bean Chili

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pounds ground turkey
  • 1 sweet/Vidalia, or yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cups chopped butternut squash (or carrot and squash)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced hot pepper (I’m using cayenne, because I grew it in my garden), ribs and seeds removed (optional – keep for more heat)
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper 
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • 2-14 oz. cans cannellini/white kidney beans, drained
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • for serving: sour cream, and 1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions (green part only)

Directions

Heat a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the olive oil. Once it’s hot, add the turkey, onion, butternut squash, and salt (start with 1 teaspoon). Cook covered until turkey is cooked and veggies have started to soften, about 10-15 minutes (a bit longer if the turkey is still frozen), stirring occasionally. Add garlic, chile, and pepper, and cook for 3 minutes, stirring often. The butternut squash will kinda mash into everything. Good. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer about 5 minutes. Add the beans and cook until beans are heated through, about 3-5 minutes. 

Remove from heat. Stir in parsley, 1 Tablespoon of butter, and the lemon juice. Taste for seasoning and add 1 teaspoon more salt if desired. Serve topped with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of scallions, with a warmed baguette slathered with herb butter. 

To make this meal vegan, use vegan butter or just stick with olive oil, replace the meat with 1 ½ pounds of shiitakes or half tempeh and half shiitakes, use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth, use vegan sour cream.