Anotheryarn Eats

October 4, 2009

Provencal Vegetable Stew

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , , , , — anotheryarn @ 10:14 pm

I know that Rachel Ray is quite the controversial figure in the cooking world.  To that I say,whatever.  I’ve been given three of her cookbooks and sometimes I find yummy sounding things (personally I have no problem ignoring the goofball names, plus I have my own goofball side, so who am I to judge?).  I was lamenting the lack of eggplant recipes in my cookbooks as I was flipping through cookbooks trying to figure out what to do with my two, yes two, new eggplants from this week’s share.  I grabbed Express Lane cooking, cursed the index (no eggplant listed) and then noticed a post-it note marking a recipe I wanted to try sometime.  That recipe was Provencal Vegetable Stew – which calls for 1 eggplant (I repeat cursed index)!  It also called for mushrooms and celery so I had TheHusband grab some from the grocery store on his way home (he had just called and I still hadn’t figured out any other ideas for dinner).  Of course it didn’t take 30 minutes.  Maybe it would have if I had started timing things after  I chopped all the veggies – I’m not the fastest chopper around, but I’m not painstakingly slow either.  It took 45 minutes.  And it was good, I’d make it again.

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Provencal Vegetable Stew from Express Lane Meals by Rachel Ray
serves 4

  • big glug of olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped (or say 1/2 of a large one)
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 lb mushrooms, quartered if large
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 medium eggplant, chopped in 1″ cubes
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 T fresh thyme leaves, chopped (or 1 t dried thyme)
  • 1 T fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1/2 c dry white wine (or dry vermouth)
  • 1 14-oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • a baguette or other crusty bread

Heat the olive oil in a big soup pot.  Add the onions, bell pepper, garlic, mushrooms, celery, and bay leaf.  Saute for a couple minutes (while you chop the eggplant and herbs).  Add the eggplant, salt, pepper and herbs.  Saute for about 15 minutes until the eggplant is soft, stirring occasionally.  Add the white wine or vermouth and deglaze the pan (stirring to get any stuck bits loose).  When that has cooked off add the tomatoes and heat through.  Serve with a nice thick slice of crusty bread.

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October 1, 2009

eggplant enchiladas, finally

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

Last night Tuesday I finally got to making this eggplant enchilada recipe I’ve been meaning to try for years.  As I mentioned, I’m quickly becoming quite enamored of eggplant and having fun trying new recipes.  Like many enchilada recipes this one seemed to take quite a bit of time, but didn’t feel difficult.  I started the evening around 5:30 or 6:0 and put together the recommended sauce recipe (not a true enchilada sauce as it is tomato-based, but tasty).  While it simmered I chopped and toasted and sauted and chopped and sauteed the filling.  I had one lapse in judgement when I chose my 10″ skillet to saute the eggplant filling – bad choice, it was nearly overflowing and I had to stir very carefully as well as use a domed lid to cover the pan.  In the end I found the recipe nice & tasty, but it produced a lot of dishes (silly me, using the food processor for some chopping and grating.

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Mexican Red Sauce from The Moosewood Cookbook

  • a glug of olive oil
  • 1/2 a medium onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1 1/2 t. cumin
  • 2+ t chili powder (I used closer to 3 t.)
  • 3 c chopped tomatoes (I used 1 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes)
  • 1 c water or tomato juice
  • black pepper
  • cayenne
  • 4-6 medium cloves of garlic (guess what I picked)
  • opt. fresh cilantro, minced (nah, why bother)

So you heat the olive oil in a 4 qt pot, saute the onion until soft, around 5 minutes.  Add the salt, cumin, chili powder and saute some more until distributed, add in the minced garlic, stir until fragrant, add the tomatoes and water (I just eyeballed the water in the tomato can and swirled it to get all the tomato from the can).  Season with black pepper and cayenne (I think I skipped the cayenne and did a dash of chipotle).  Simmer for about 30 minutes (or until you are filling the enchiladas, whichever is later), stirring occasionally.

Eggplant Enchiladas from The Moosewood Cookbook

  • 1 c almonds, toasted then minced
  • glug olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, minced
  • 6 c diced eggplant (recipe suggests 1 large or 2 medium)
  • 1 t salt
  • black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic, smooshed
  • 1 green bell pepper, minced
  • 1 c grated jack cheese (about 4 oz)
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • mexican red sauce (recipe above)
  • another 4 oz of jack cheese, grated (or the rest of that 8 oz package)

I recommend toasting the almonds in the pan you will use for cooking the filling.  Then set them aside, chopped or not while you deal with the rest of the filling.  I used the food processor them minced, I didn’t figure a large almond chunk would be appreciated in the enchiladas.

Preheat your oven to 350 F.

You heat up the olive oil in a nice big pan with a lid.  Saute the onion for about 5 minutes, until it is soft.  Add the eggplant, salt and pepper (I think I forgot the pepper, it was still good) and saute for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and cover the pan.  Add the garlic and bell pepper, cook for another 5 minutes or so, until everything is soft.  Then you stir in the almonds and the cheese.

IMG_7251Pour some sauce into your 9×13 pyrex pan and spread it thinly on the bottom.  Gently heat your corn tortilla is a dry, non-stick skillet and scoop about 1/4 cup of the filling onto it, roll and place seam side down in the pan.  Repeat 11 more times.  I recommend a clean, folded non-linty towel to protect your hands while rolling the tortillas.  Pour the remaining sauce  over the tortillas and top with the remaining cup of grated cheese.  Bake for 30 minutes.

Looking back, I think you could cut down the amount of cheese in the filling, but it is nice to have some cheese since it helps it stay together during the rolling process.

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