Anotheryarn Eats

October 8, 2009

Fish Tacos

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , — anotheryarn @ 3:40 pm

I was thrilled and proud that we used up almost all of the veggies in our fridge before this week’s pick-up.  When I list out what was left (1 green cabbage, 1 small red cabbage, 1 bunch beets, 1 carrot, 4 oz green beans, some green onion stalks; oh yes and some onions and potatoes) it looks like a long list – but really isn’t that much produce when you try and have produce be the bulk of your meal.  I have plans for that bunch of beets (as well as a bunch of beets that are already roasted) and the carrot.  I had plans for the green beans but they fell through.  This is how every week is supposed to be, but too often, even though we downsized to a half-share, I could come up with a Sunday-Friday meal plan on Sunday (not that I’ve been meal-planning lately, but I’m trying to get back into it).

And so, on Sunday while listening to The Splendid Table (Mario Batali has fish taco night on Thursdays) I decided to make fish tacos on Tuesday.  It would use some cabbage and green onions but not be too dependent on veggies (and not require me to buy anything that we might just get in our share that day).  I took a look at Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch guide to help me pick a fish, then did a search on Epicurious to help me decide how to prepare everything.  Now some will say fish tacos are breaded and fried fish in corn tortillas with a fresh salsa and/or creamy sauce but I grew up with grilled fish tacos (but both are quite tasty when done right, the former when done wrong ends up like fish sticks wrapped in a tortilla) and was feeling a bit out of my element since I hardly ever cook fish.  I settled on loosely following this recipe for Baja Fish Tacos.  And when I say loosely I mean loosely.  I didn’t use the recommended fish, just the marinade (with half the oil) and the crema (done with lemon juice since I was running out of lime juice); the slaw sounded really good but I knew we wouldn’t use that much shredded cabbage so I kept it plain for better storage.

fish tacosFish Tacos, fish marinade from Epicurious

  • about 1 lb fish, aim for a mild white flesh fish
  • fish marinade
    • 1/4 c oil
    • 3 T lime juice
    • 5 t chile powder
    • 1 1/2 t cumin
    • 1 1/2 t ground coriander
    • pinch salt
  • shredded cabbage
  • sliced green onions
  • cilantro
  • sour cream turned “crema
    • sour cream
    • plain yogurt
    • lemon juice
  • salsa
  • lime wedges
  • corn tortillas

Whisk the marinade together, and place the fish in it.  Shred the cabbage, slice the green onion, stir together the crema (note my sour cream, yogurt and lemon juice method was only semi-successful).  Cook your fish (the recipe suggest grilling which is nice but we just pan fried/sauted it).  Plate and cut into smaller pieces.  Heat a tortilla, place some fish, crema, salsa, cabbage, green onions and cilantro in it.  Squeeze a wedge of lime over the taco right before eating.


October 6, 2009

Lentil Soup

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , , , — anotheryarn @ 11:09 pm

I love soup, but I’m partial to thick, chunky soups that borderline on stew except my soups rarely have large chunks of meat.  Lentil soups were never my favorite, but when I saw this recipe for Lentil Soup with Sausage and Cabbage I knew I had to make it.  Luckily I also had a head of green cabbage waiting to be used in the fridge.  As I finished cooking it occurred to me that this soup looked a lot like my grandmothers vegetable soup (a variety of vegetables  in a broth with tomatoes, ground beef and cabbage).  It was – and that is just fine because I loved my grandmother’s vegetable soup.

I did make some changes to the recipe.  I halved the recipe, since a household of two doesn’t need 8 servings of untested soup.  I skipped the stew-meat since it just struck me as an odd addition, and picked spicy italian sausage over mild italian sausage.  While the lentil variety was not specified, and I suspect they meant the common brown/green lentil, I chose to use french green lentils.  And finally I did not add the tomato and salt according the instructions (when adding the water and lentils) because I was worried about the salt or acid prolonging the cook-time for the lentils; Instead I added the tomato and salt once the lentils had softened, let the pot come back to a simmer and then added the cabbage.


Lentil Soup with Sausage and Cabbage from How to Pick a Peach by Russ Parsons
adapted slightly by me (ie this is half a recipe and missing stew meat)

  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1/2 lb italian sausage (I chose spicy italian sausage)
  • 2 T red wine vinegar, plus more for the finished soup
  • 1 chopped carrot
  • 1 chopped celery rib
  • 1/2 onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 lb french green lentils, picked over and rinsed
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 14 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 t salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 8 oz cabbage, cored and shredded (probably half a small cabbage)

In soup pot (I used my 4 qt pot) heat the oil and add the sausage.  Cook until done, breaking it up as it browns.  Once it is cooked (recipe says 15 minutes, I didn’t time it) pour the red wine vinegar into the pan to deglaze it, stirring vigorously to loosen the stuck bits.  Once the vinegar has evaporated remove the pot from the heat, and use a slotted spoon to transfer the sausage to a strainer (or plate with paper towels).  Spoon out some of the remaining fat from the pot – you want to have about 1 tablespoon left in the pot.  Put the pot back on the burner and turn to medium.  Add the carrot, celery, and onion to pot and saute until soft, around 5 minutes.  Then add the garlic and stir until fragrant, maybe a minute.  At this point you add the lentils, water and bay leaf and bring it to boil, then turn down to simmer.  Let everything simmer for about 45 minutes, then test lentils to make sure they are tender.  Now add the tomatoes, salt and pepper and bring it back to a simmer.  Add the shredded cabbage, and let everything simmer for about 15 minutes until the cabbage is soft.  Add a drizzle of red wine vinegar (maybe a tablespoon or so) and taste to adjust seasonings if needed.

August 19, 2009

first week August condensed

Filed under: thoughts — Tags: , , , , — anotheryarn @ 2:24 pm

8/3: What did we eat?  I simply don’t remember, but I suspect it wasn’t at home since I have no pictures of food from that day

quiche8/4: Quiche with that chard, yup that chard that amazingly made it in my fridge for way longer than I expected.  I jazzed it up with the remaining feta and some oil-packed sun dried tomatoes – they might no longer be “in” with the foodie crowd but they sure can give a bit oomph to an otherwise drab dish and I consider them a posh pantry staple

indian8/4: Crazily, despite being a Tuesday (share night) and cooking one dish that could have been dinner, but was intended for lunches I had to go and make an indian “feast” (I joke about feast because I generally make one-pot type dinners and this required 1 pot, 2 pans and a few bowls).  If there had been anyway that I could have just had us eat quiche for dinner I would have, but I’d had ingredients for these two dishes sitting in my fridge for over a week and kept putting off cooking them due to the horrible heat.  That cauliflower wasn’t going to last forever, neither was the cabbage, and I’d already re-bought the potatoes once (after using the first round for the yummy green bean and potato salads that I made).  Anyway.  I cooked up a storm that Tuesday night and had the dishes to prove in on Wednesday morning (also, we ate after 10 pm – oops).  Smitten Kitchen’s Red Lentils with Cabbage (love, so making this again, but my version came out much soupier than her version), Aloo Gobi supposedly from Bend it Like Beckham; every transcription I’ve seen of this recipe seems to leave something out, whether a measurement or ingredient on the list, I think I looked at about half a dozen aloo gobi recipes before settling on following this one – but it turned out nicely in the end other than needing a longer cooking time that stated) and raita from The Moosewood Cookbook.  And of course garlic naan from TJs (basically I bribe TheHusband into eating indian spiced dishes by providing garlic naan).

8/6: Camping!  and eating the leftover crustless quiche, heated up by wrapping it in foil and leaving it on the grate over the campfire.  A nice crusty bread would have rounded out the meal nicely, but no such luck.

camping8/7: Camping!  And eating delicious grilled sausages (don’t have ketchup?  order some onion rings at a fast food place on the drive to the camp site), and super pretty veggie hobo packets.  Seriously, I should start looking for purple potatoes whenever camping is in plans.  These hobo packets are made like so, this time with red bell pepper, carrots, yellow squash (CSA!), potatoes and a couple garlic cloves per packet.  We are still figuring out campfire cooking and that sweet heat spot that allows for some char while not blackening one side of the food and leaving the other side raw – this night we settled for nicely steamed packets – no char but everything is cooked through.  Some campmates shared their baked beans, heated oh so classically in the can over the fire.  Sometimes I like to go all out coming up with new camping meals, other times it is nice to be able to fall back on the standards.

And recapping this week made me exhausted from thinking of that Tuesday cooking marathon.

January 13, 2009

January 5: Tasty Tacos

Filed under: almost a recipe — Tags: — anotheryarn @ 1:23 pm

I can’t believe I’m still eating vegetables from the CSA.  In addition to the veggies in the fridge mentioned in the last post, I just remembered that I have a bag of potatoes in the pantry and a few winter squash in the garage.  While the majority of this meal wasn’t CSA veggies, it was still tasty and I believe deserves to be included as tacos are not tacos in this nearly-vegetarian household without some sort of green leaf as part of the filling.  We use lettuce most of the time, but in the winter we are more likely to use cabbage.  On Sunday I made a small pot of black beans (and that night we ate simple bowls of beans), well with beans and cabbage in the fridge we just new what we were going to have for dinner.  And at the utter last minute we decided we wanted Tacos with a capitol T.  In my family that means freshly fried shells (well, fresh from a store bought package of tortillas).  So we, um, bought an 8″ cast iron skillet and pulled out the remaining shortening (yes, bad, but we had it so we used it) and started practicing our shell frying skills.  

The first two shells were sacrificed to the kitchen god, whom decided to consume them via my mouth, but after that they were useable – nice and crunchy if a little snug for filling.  I just broke one in half and made two half tostadas when filling it become too difficult.

Taco instructions in pictures (because nothing is measured)


Fried Shells: small cast iron skillet, hot oil, tongs and some practice (hint fry one side at a time), we’ve always let them rest and drain on a paper bag


refried beans do not make for an appetizing picture

“Refried” beans:  I actually just scoop out beans plus a bit of their juices into the pan, let it heat up, add a bit of cumin and mash with a potato masher to the consistency I prefer.  If they are too juicy and you forgot to skim the juice before mashing just let it simmer off, if they seem dry stir in a spoonful of water at a time until they are the right thickness.



Toppings: grated cheese, shredded cabbage, diced onion, salsa and sour cream (tomato, cucumber, avocado, cilantro are all great toppings when you can get them)



And the tasty taco result.  I actually like to layer as follows: beans, cheese, salsa, other diced stuff if available, sour cream and finally the shredded cabbage.  The sour cream helps the cabbage stick in the taco and the cabbage keeps the sour cream off your hands (if you didn’t overstuff your taco).



The oop-it’s-now-a-tostada-taco, still tasty

January 1, 2009

December 17: Cabbage Mushroom pie

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , — anotheryarn @ 1:14 pm

Just before we left town for christmas I managed to make this cabbage mushroom gallete from Smitten-Kitchen.  I was feeling so busy, trying to get shopping done, cookies baked and christmas packages sent that I really wanted to just order take-out.  However I already bought the shitake mushrooms called for and had sour cream waiting to be used up in the fridge.  I really should have made this dish on a weekend, with the chilling and such, it felt like more effort than a weeknight supper should.  But we just ate a little bit later than normal, which in reality isn’t that late for our normal and the pie was delicious (as so many Smitten Kitchen recipes are).  Of course, 1 1/2 sticks of butter and a 1/2 cup + of sour cream will do that.  I pretty much followed the recipe, except we only made half a recipe of the horseradish sauce and that was plenty of sauce for the pie, err galette.


Cabbage and Mushroom Galette from Smitten Kitchen

September 28, 2008

September 10: Hippie Mac and Cheese

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , , , — anotheryarn @ 5:03 pm

As far as I know there isn’t a dish called hippie mac and cheese but that is just what this dish strikes me as (also it felt wrong to refer to the leftovers as “mac and cheese” so they were dubbed “hippie mac and cheese” – it immediately identified which dish I was referring to in the fridge).  I also thought it was quite yummy – but definitely not your ordinary mac and cheese.  In fact I would not suggest this if you are craving mac and cheese.  It is a wonderful casserole that uses up lots of vegetables including that fridge squatter cabbage.  Why this recipe appealed to me in the first place, I’ll never know but I’m glad I tried it.

As I started to assemble this dish (and there is quite a bit of veggie prep and chopping involved) I began to question my judgement.  Have you ever looked at a recipe and thought, “no way will that turn out”?  Well I began to think just that – I was questioning the mass quantities of veggies, the small amount of pasta, the cottage cheese (won’t that be all chunky? ewww), and the lack of seasonings (a little bit of garlic and some caraway seeds).  But I already had half the veggies chopped, the pasta boiled and the container of cottage cheese so I persevered.  I made two modifications to the recipe, first instead of spinach I used a bunch of swiss chard and second I blended the cottage cheese to make a smooth sauce (I also added a few carrots but that was according to the recipe preface).  It might not be the prettiest dish but it turned out to be delicious.  As far as that “lite” designation I really have no clue how it stacks up calorically against standard mac and cheese but certainly the veggies give it a nice nutritional boost.

Macaroni & Cheese Lite from The Moosewood Cookbook by Mollie Katzen

  • 8 oz short pasta (something that catches sauce nicely)
  • 2 T butter
  • 2 c chopped onion (about 1 large onion)
  • 2 clove garlic, minced
  • small handful chopped carrots*
  • 1/2 lb mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 cups shredded cabbage (about 1/2 average head or all of a tiny head)
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t caraway seeds
  • 1 bunch swiss chard, stems removed and coarsely chopped*
  • 2 c cottage cheese (1 lb container)
  • 1/2 c buttermilk
  • 2 t dried dill (or 2 T fresh)
  • black pepper to taste
  • 2 c packed grated cheddar cheese, divided
  • handful of (raw, shelled) sunflower seeds*

Preheat the oven to 350 F and oil a 9 by 13 baking pan.  (This only takes two pans if you chop your veggies while the pasta boils and set the pasta aside and use the same pan to saute all the veggies.  I used my wider-than-deep 4 1/2 quart soup pot.)

Boil your pasta and prep all your veggies.  Once the pasta is drained, place the pot back on the burner and add the butter and let it melt, then add the onion.  Let them soften for about 5 minutes (stir a couple times) then add the carrots, mushrooms, cabbage, salt and caraway seeds.  Stir occasionally for about 10 minutes.  Everything should be soft.  Dump the swiss chard in, cover the pan and remove from the heat.

While the veggies are sauteing, in a blender puree the cottage cheese and buttermilk together until smooth.

Add the pasta to the pan with all the veggies and stir to combine.  Pour the cottage cheese-buttermilk sauce over everything and add the dill and black pepper.  Stir to combine and then stir in half of the cheddar cheese.  Dump all of this in the prepped baking pan, sprinkle the remaining cheese on top and the optional sunflower seeds.  Bake until heated through, about 20 or 30 minutes.

*Carrots are one of the optional veggies to include (chopped broccoli and cauliflower are also mentioned) in “modest” amounts; the recipe calls for 1 bunch spinach; I didn’t have sunflower seeds when I made this but think they’d make a good addition.

September 7 dinner: Cabbage and potatoes

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , — anotheryarn @ 4:48 pm

According to the April 2008 issue of Vegetarian Times it is Spicy Bolivian Cabbage and Potatoes.  I’m not going to go digging to see if a vegetarian magazine got a recipe authentic or not – I was simply looking for recipes that would use up the vast quantities of cabbage in my fridge.  I had not managed to use my cabbage up two weeks in a row and was worried that the upcoming Tuesday would bring a third head of green cabbage to my fridge.  

Plus I think I managed to actually have all the ingredients, well I subbed the jalapeno for a scotch bonnet and didn’t have the cilantro garnish on hand… Bonus points for promising to be a 30 minute recipe (they never are, but still generally take less time than those that claim to be 1 hour +).  I actually made half a recipe (thank goodness those cabbages were on the small side) but the leftovers sat, totally forgotten in the fridge for the rest of the week.  Oops.  I’d make this again though – it was colorful and spicy and had decent flavor.

Spicy Bolivan Cabbage and Potatoes from Vegetarian Times April 2008

August 23, 2008

Dinner August 21: veggies with a side of veggies

Filed under: almost a recipe, Recipes — Tags: , , , , , — anotheryarn @ 11:32 am

When I’m feeling fancy I call this a composed vegetable plate, but tonight it is just veggies with more veggies.  And some yummy bread.  Luckily the weather is cool enough to roast vegetables, unfortunately my roasted veggie timing was all off.  The potatoes were slightly over cooked, the kohlrabi slightly undercooked and I didn’t start the squash in time to be ready with everything else.  Oh well.  And now I realize that I should have made a yummy bean dip for that bread, oh well maybe next time.  I also decided to make some cabbage according to an Orangette recipe.  Now cabbage is not maligned in our house, but generally relegated to a tasty taco topping.  So we have roasted kohlrabi (a delicious and simple way to eat it IMO – though our huge softball sized kohlrabi made way too much for two), roasted potatoes (itty bitty new potatoes), roasted pattypan squash and roasted red peppers as well as sauteed green cabbage with apples and red onion (or in my case shallot since that is what I had in the pantry).  Sadly it turned out that we had way too much kohlrabi and cabbage and not enough potatoes (which were really tasty paired with the cabbage), and overall I just overfilled our plates.  Lesson learned I guess (um, hope).

Roasting veggies basics

  • preheat oven to 375 or 400 F
  • cut into large-bite size pieces
  • toss in a bowl with some oil (start with 1 tablespoon), salt, pepper and other seasonings if desired
  • toss onto a baking sheet in a single layer, ideally not too crowded
  • put in oven, check and maybe stir/turn half-way through baking time

How long to cook? Time is dependent on vegetable and size; the potatoes and kohlrabi were in for 20 minutes (too long for the size of potato, slightly too short for kohlrabi), squash and red pepper were in for about 10 or 15 minutes; it always depends on how well done you want them – the squash could have been cooked a wee bit longer.

August 12, 2008

Failed: roasted cabbage

Filed under: almost a recipe — Tags: — anotheryarn @ 12:42 pm

One of my cookbooks has instructions to roast a number of different vegetables.  Cabbage is included in this list, to be roasted in 2″ wedges.  I did this while baking the Vegetable Upside-Down Cake.  I tried to cut the cabbage into 2 inch wedges as recommended, placed them on an oiled baking sheet, brushed oil on the tops and sides and then sprinkled it with salt.  I stirred the cabbage about halfway through and of course none of it stayed in wedges.  Overall it seemed like it was missing something, but I couldn’t figure out what.  It wasn’t a spectacular failure that resulted in inedible veggies (just a couple loose leaves charred to a nice crunchy brown state) but it just wasn’t a very appealing dish either.  We tried it with a sprinkle of balsamic vinegar, (resulting in “now I just taste the vinegar”) and eating it with the cheese sauce (“now I just taste the cheese sauce”).  Oh well, you win some you loose some; I’m glad it wasn’t a time or ingredient intensive experiment.

August 7, 2008

August 2 dinner: Herbed bean burgers and coleslaw

Filed under: Recipes, Recipes by me — Tags: , , , , — anotheryarn @ 12:37 pm

Last week we got a small head of green cabbage for the first time.  I knew I wanted to make coleslaw, and I wanted to include horseradish as Splatgirl mentioned a week or so ago and at the last minute decided to include radishes since Smitten Kitchen posted the scrumptious looking salad with napa cabbage.  But what to have in addition to coleslaw?  It was a cold and dreary day so of course I thought of grilled burgers?  My mind is weird, it craves ice cream when I’m cold too.  Of course we don’t cook meat at home anymore and I’m not a huge fan of store-bought veggie burger or veggie dogs, I’m not even actually a big hamburger fan.  I think I want one about once a year.  

Luckily I thought of a recipe for homemade black bean burgers; but then thought about how I had 5 cans of cannellini beans in the pantry and didn’t I see a white bean burger recipe somewhere?  Which of course sent me on my usual “how many recipes can I find to evaluate” search.  (There is a herbed white bean burger recipe in Simple Vegetarian Pleasures, but I didn’t follow her recipe.)  In the end I looked at four or five recipes and came up with my own for herbed bean burgers (my technique needs some tweaking but I look forward to making more variations of bean burgers).  We served them on lightly toasted multigrain buns with fresh tomato, lettuce and a mayo-dijon mixture.  And they paired excellently with the coleslaw.

The coleslaw however was a case of too many ideas implemented in one dish.  I used the coleslaw recipe from The New Best Recipe and I think that it would have been great on its own, but I mucked with the delicate flavor of the dressing – and horseradish plus radishes was just overkill.  I do stand by my addition of a second carrot.

Herbed Bean Bugers

  • 1 can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/3 c bulger wheat
  • green onions to equal 1/2 cup or so
  • handful fresh parsley
  • 8-10 fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 t. dried oregano
  • 1 t soy sauce
  • 1/3 c bread crumbs
  • 1 egg

Place the bulgar wheat in a small bowl pour 2/3 cup boiling water over it, cover and let it sit for about 10 minutes (or however long it takes to prep the rest of the ingredients).  Roughly chop the green onions and place in the food processor, add the parsley and basil and oregano and pulse until they are minced.  Drain the bulger wheat of any excess water, you should have about 3/4 cup of bulgar wheat.  Add the beans, bulger wheat and soy sauce to the food processor.  Pulse to combine.  Try not to let it get too mushy.  Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.  Add the bread crumbs and egg to the mixture.  Pulse to combine.  

Be careful to not overprocess this or you will up up with a burger mixture that is the consistency of dip (what I had).  It will be rather wet though, from what I read a little too wet is better than too dry.  If it is too dry add a bit of liquid (maybe another egg, maybe a bit of egg white, maybe even water – though I’m not sure on the water), if it is too liquidy add more bread crumbs.   Hmm, maybe those bread crumbs should be added last?  I’ll have to try that next time.

Shape into 4 patties and place on waxed paper (I froze two patties and cooked two patties).  Heat a skillet to medium-high and add oil.  When the oil is hot place the patties in the skillet.  Let them cook until golden brown and then flip, about 5-6 minutes per side.


Coleslaw with buttermilk dressing from The New Best Recipe, serves 4 (very generously IMO)

  • 1 pound red or green cabbage (about 1/2 a medium head), shredded fine or chopped
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 2 medium carrots, peeled and grated
  • 4 radishes, diced

the dressing

  • 1/2 c. buttermilk
  • 2 T mayonnaise
  • 2 T sour cream
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 2 T minced fresh parsley
  • 1/2 t cider vinegar
  • 1/4 t dijon mustard
  • 1/2 t sugar
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/8 t black pepper
  • 1 t horseradish

Toss the cabbage with 1 teaspoon salt and leave in a colander or large mesh strainer to wilt and drain for 1 to 4 hours.  Rinse the cabbage well and drain (don’t squeeze it).  Combine the cabbage and carrot in a large bowl.  Whisk together the dressing ingredients and pour over the cabbage, carrots, radishes and toss.  Keeps for 3 days in the fridge.

(My mods: the second carrot, 4 radishes and 1 teaspoon of horseradish in the dressing.  As I said above, skip the horseradish in the dressing as it is too assertive. Or did I use too much?  hmmm)

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