Anotheryarn Eats

October 5, 2009

a new way to curry

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , , , , , — anotheryarn @ 9:06 pm

Ever since I discovered jars of red curry paste, coconut curry has been an often repeated dinner.  Sometimes it is quick ‘n easy route of frozen veggies simmered in the curry sauce, other times it is a way to use up a varieties of veggies.  Earlier this week, I was excited to see find this Roasted Veggies, Thai Style recipe on The Bitten Blog.  And conveniently I had almost everything called for in the recipe (I subbed a green pepper for the red and added carrots for more color).  Of course the one hour cook time meant this dish got put off a few nights, first it was planned for Thursday – but evening commitments turned that into leftover-night, then it was planned for Saturday but I when I hit the kitchen at 7:20 pm to start dinner and discovered the pan I needed to use was dirty (and the bowl I needed to use a different pan was also dirty) I pushed it back to Sunday night.

It was pretty easy, though it does take 2 pans instead of my usual one pan for either curry OR roasted veggies.  But the peanut-enhanced curry sauce was quite yummy and we are totally looking forward to eating the leftovers as lunch.  I think it could do with less roasting time, and possibly a time delay for adding certain veggies to the oven (shallots sooner than everything else, but maybe that is just my grocery stores gargantuan shallots).  It just depends how “melty” you like your veggies I think.  And yes, this is a pretty spectacularly bad photo, above-head compact florescent bulb plus high fat food equals “what is that greasy blob looking thing?”.

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Thai-Style Roasted Veggies with rice from NYTimes Bitten Blog by Mark Bittman with my addition of carrots

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September 24, 2009

nicoise salad?

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , , , — anotheryarn @ 2:01 pm

A while ago I saw this beautiful salad nicoise on Mixed Greens (or is it Eating Locally in the Pacific Northwest, I’m a bit confused on the title of the blog).  I’ve been meaning to make it for a while but kept being out of one or another ingredient.  Friday night it came together minus any sort of leafy greens.  But I made way too much, it turned out very tasty and turned into a decent lunch despite the chilled tomatoes.

nicoiseNicoise Salad of Sorts

  • 8 potatoes
  • two handfuls of green beans
  • 1 tomato
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 6 oz can oil-packed tuna
  • handful nicoise olives
  • lemon vinaigrette (1/4 of a recipe made enough)

First I hard boiled the eggs.  I recently read about a method where you cover the eggs in cold water, bring it to a boil, and once it is boiling turn the heat off and let the pan sit on the burner for 10 minutes, then you pour off the hot water and rinse in cold water to cool them off for peeling.  I’ve made great, perfectly cooked eggs since learning about this method. While the eggs were cooking I started on the rest of the prep.  I quartered the potatoes (and just happened to only have purple potatoes in the house) and steamed them until fork tender (10+ minutes), then I removed them from the steamer basket and added my green beans (de-stemmed of course, and cut in half) and steamed those for 5 minutes.  I sliced the tomato into nice, large, bite-sized chunks, I made the dressing, and drained the tuna.  Then I assembled everything on two plates, composed salad style (I think this is composed salad style) and drizzled the dressing over it.  We ended up sharing one plate and dumping the other plate into a bowl, turning it into a tossed salad that we ate for lunch the next day.

August 26, 2009

Eggplant Torte a la Provencal

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , , , — anotheryarn @ 4:21 pm

As I was thumbing through my cookbooks, looking for a good eggplant recipe I found this, eggplant torte a la provencal, in a now lesser used cookbook, The Occasional Vegetarian.  This cookbook was an outlet bookstore find (wait, this might have been a gift and my Vegetable Heaven cookbook was the three-dollar find), and I’ve made a few winning, repeat worthy dishes from this book.  This dish, might be just that, but my preparation was doomed from the start.

Monday, 6 pm:  Okay, what do I need to make that eggplant dish?  Step 1) sprinkle with salt and let sit for an hour. Well crap, I guess it would be better for me to make green bean enchiladas anyway, those green beans aren’t going to last much longer.

Tuesday, 5-ish pm:  Must make list and grab that tomato and red onion, oh but I need to get dishes done too.  [An hour goes by while I’m on the phone, at least I get the dishes done; and TheHusband calls to say he will be home late, whew.]

Tuesday 6:30 pm.  I salt the eggplant and head to the store.

Tuesday 7:30 pm I rinse the eggplant, pat it dry and prep the remaining ingredients.  At that point I turn over the page* and discover  step 4 is sauteing the eggplant about 3 minutes on both sides.  I’m really regretting my use of this skinny (Japanese?) eggplant now.  20+ minutes and 4 frying pan batches later I’m done cooking the eggplant.  Mmm, this eggplant is tasty, it is too bad I already have those potatoes, tomatoes and onion sliced.  I wonder if I could treat this dish like a roasted veggie dish instead?  If it tastes good I’ll try that next time…I start layering the veggies and lament that I didn’t pick a bigger “baking pan” (what defines a baking pan anyway, is it a specific size?)…

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Tuesday 8:45 pm:  I manage to put the torte in the oven.  Of course I have leftover eggplant (not much), potato, tomato and onion slices — and I’m starving.  I look at the potato and think breakfast burritos!  And so despite spending over an hour assembling this dish, I ate egg burritos (with potatoes, red onion, tomatoes and pepper jack cheese) for dinner.  They were darn tasty egg burritos and I just hope that this eggplant torte is good at room temperature like the recipe states.

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* One of my biggest complaints about this book (other than her extreme fondness of leeks, which isn’t really a problem except on the budget) is the fact that recipes are jammed in, and too often the ingredient list will be on one page while the bulk of the directions are on the next page.

And now the recipe, remember, you have been warned.

IMG_1340

Eggplant Torte a la Provencal from The Occasional Vegetarian by Karen Lee with Diane Porter

  • 2 medium eggplants (about 1 pound), cut into 1/2″ thick rounds
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Sprinkle the eggplant slices with salt and set aside for 1 hour.  Rinse and pat dry between non-linty towels.

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1/2 t dried thyme

Pour the olive oil into a small saucepan and turn the heat on medium.  Chop the garlic and add it to the pan.  Take the pan off the heat at this point.  Crush the thyme in your palm and stir it into the oil.

  • 2 medium potatoes (about 1/2 pound), peeled and sliced in 3/8″ thick rounds
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced in 3/8″ thick rounds
  • 1 medium red onion, sliced in 3/8″ thick rounds

Heat a cast-iron skillet (the recipe is specific) to high and brush the seasoned oil on the eggplant slices.  Saute them until brown (about 3 minutes), flip and cook until the other side is golden brown.  Beware crowding the eggplant in the pan; repeat the process for all long as necessary.  Keep the remaining seasoned oil.  Preheat your oven to 350 F.

  • 1/4 t black pepper
  • 1 t salt
  • 3/4 c fresh basil leaves, torn
  • few sprigs thyme, optional

Add the pepper and salt to the remaining seasoned oil.  Stir until combined.

Now prep a baking pan (my dish was too small – I had leftovers of all 4 main ingredients, I’d try a 9×13 pyrex pan next time, if there is a next time) by oiling the bottom.  Begin layering the eggplant, potato, tomato and onion, leaving 1/2″ showing from the previous layer.  Once you’ve used up the ingredients and/or filled your pan brush the remaining seasoned oil over the veggies, then stuff the basil leaves and thyme between the layers of veggies.  Bake, uncovered, for 1 hour.

update: I let a serving come to room temperature today for lunch, the eggplant was just as tasty as ever, but the potatoes seemed a little undercooked and overall I don’t think this was worth the effort.  But I am dreaming up ways to combine the flavors again in an easier, less fussy format.

August 19, 2009

apparently I didn’t cook last week

Filed under: almost a recipe, thoughts — Tags: , , , , , , , , — anotheryarn @ 4:25 pm

At least that is what my list and photographs tell me. But now as I recap for you, it sure seems like I did cook. Two meals on Tuesday, a simple meal on Thursday (pot of pinto beans), a summer feast on Sunday and desperation burritos on Monday (done by TheHusband since I was simply too famished to cook and he had happily munched on fruit all evening).


lunchTuesday, around lunch time, I didn’t want to cook (it was a trend) but needed to eat. So I decided to make make a quick bean salad. It started with a can of garbonzo beans, then I grabbed a small zucchini, make that two, that needed to be eaten – oh a quick saute in olive oil with some herbs (actually I’ve been using Penzey’s Mural of Flavor as my go-to lazy blend lately), then I decided to chuck in some kalamata olives and sun-dried tomatoes (see what did I tell you? boring to hmmm, this is pretty good). Hmm, I think this needs a little bit of tart, so I splashed the last of my red wine vinegar in the bowl and scooped myself up about half of it lest I loose control and eat the entire bowl. IM not generally accurate O this made two nice sized servings. I took the bowl and my laptop outside to enjoy the fabulous weather (high of 75) hoping it would inspire me to start writing – but it didn’t.

IMG_7144Tuesday night I decided that something must be done about our over-flowing fridge. I cleaned out all the icky leftovers (sigh, I hate when I don’t effectively manage our leftover consumption) and made a big mess of roasted vegetables as well as a potato-celeriac mash (woooo! that darn celeriac is finally gone). Does anyone happen to know if celeriac always floats when in water or was mine just really too old to cook? Trust me, you don’t really want a recipe for either of these things. This mess o’ roasted vegetables contained: summer squashes, onions, carrots, green beans and kohlrabi.

summerdinnerSkipping all the way to Sunday night, we made a very Summer Meal, if a bit on the yellow side. Corn on the cob (from the grocery store, because I was craving it), sauteed summer squash (yet again with that Mural of Flavor) and a big green salad (lettuce, cucumber, carrots, radishes all from the CSA and a tomato from the FM) topped with homemade buttermilk ranch dressing. This time I didn’t follow a recipe, and just sort of chucked stuff in, only grabbing a small measuring cup to get more or less equal quantities of sour cream, mayo and buttermilk. It also had garlic, salt, a handful of chives, a handful of dried parsley (oops, forgot that at the store) and black pepper. I did end up adding a bit more buttermilk to get it to a thinner consistency. We should have had green beans too, but that would have required a third pot, which seemed like two pots too many for such a simple meal and TheHusband declared corn, squash and salad enough food.

Finally on Monday, we had a late dinner of burritos, using some leftover beans and my thankfully already cleaned lettuce (with the usual tortillas, cheese, salsa and sour cream). Photos were forgotten as I scarffed down the food. Besides, a photo of a burrito is generally not so hot – all that white on my white plates.

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.

July 27, 2009

I cooked

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , , — anotheryarn @ 12:58 am

IMG_1085To end my non-cooking week I actually cooked two meals.  We started the day with a spinach-jack cheese omelet.  It is still a little more brown than I’d like, but still tasted quite good.  And omelets are so nice and quick.  Not that we did anything on Saturday, which was a good thing after our fairly busy week where one of us wasn’t home Wednesday, Thursday and Friday night. I also prepped the chard in anticipation of cooking it, but I didn’t.

Instead we made Smitten Kitchen’s Arugula, Potato and Green Bean Salad.  And I’d be happy to eat this for the rest of the summer.  It was a bit dish-intensive, but came together surprisingly quickly and the dressing was surprisingly good.  I started scarfing it down once it was plated, completely forgetting to toast and add the nuts.  In a way it was good that I forgot, it made me stop shoving this salad in my mouth while I waited for the nuts and I got to try it both ways.  I think I actually prefer the salad without walnuts.  It might look prettier with the walnuts but I didn’t think they added that much to the overall dish.  Of course I’m also not crazy about walnuts (you will often find sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, pine nuts and almonds in my pantry, occasionally pecans but rarely walnuts).  Half a recipe made a perfect dinner for 2 (yes all we ate was this salad).

IMG_1086

Arugula, Potato and Green Bean Salad from Smitten Kitchen

You might be tempted to increase the amount of green beans, but it isn’t necessary.  You might think the dressing sounds a little bland, but it is perfect.  You might not have fingerling potatoes and substitute creamers instead, they work but make for large bites.  You might decide to not buy a $7.50 bottle of walnut oil for 1 tablespoon and it won’t affect the dressing results too sorely (I sure didn’t miss it).  You might forget to toast the walnuts but I bet you will still like the salad.

February 11, 2009

February 9: the last of the potatoes

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , — anotheryarn @ 6:39 pm

I really thought that I would be posting about breakfast by now.  But I really want to stick to one topic and so I slowly count down the remaining CSA items.  Last week the cabbage was used up, this week I finished off the potatoes, now it is just a matter of using up the remaining winter squashes I keep forgetting about in the garage.

I picked up a chunk of celeriac from the winter farmer’s market in January, then I kept getting stumped by what recipe to use.  I planned on making soup, but on Monday night I felt more like eating mashed potatoes and I found a recipe that managed to use up the remaining CSA potatoes, the celeriac and some hedgehog mushrooms we got at the farmer’s market the day before.  It was pretty good, but not amazing.  It also took way longer than I thought it would when I skimmed the recipe.  Some of that time was spent agonizing over whether or not I should send TheHusband out to buy some sherry, what kind and how long does it last anyways.  In the end my guess of white wine or dry vermouth being decent substitutes was backed up by a google search and we didn’t bother buying sherry.  In the end the mushrooms sauteed in butter with some rosemary and dry vermouth were the best part of the meal.  I was also amazed at how fragrant the celeriac was… it made me wonder if a celery scented candle would be nice.

mashers

Mashed Potatoes and Celeriac and Wild Mushrooms from MarthaStewart.com (originally published November 1995)

December 6, 2008

November 13: Kale, Potatoes, Onions, Apples and Soysages

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , , — anotheryarn @ 12:53 am

I am ridiculously amused by the word soysage (if you haven’t guessed soysage is soy sausage).  Tonight We made 101 Cookbook’s Kale & Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes which was pretty good but not quite as good as her picture suggests – maybe if I hadn’t overcooked the potatoes and took the time to fry shallots it would have been better (probably).  Oh well, it was still good.  And Veggie Sausage & Apples, as the recipe is actually called, comes to me via Tara of DIY Librarian (I’m pretty sure there aren’t any recipes lurking on her blog as that wasn’t how she passed the recipe on to me).  Anyway, veggies sausage and apples is delicious, I usually serve it with mashed potatoes, though she also suggestion noodles as the accompanying starch (I bet it’d be really good made with regular sausage too – just the plain jain bulk stuff). I know neither of these dishes look fabulous but they are delicious.

sausage-apples-potatoes

Kale and Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes from 101 Cookbooks

Veggie Sausage and Apples from Tara of DIY Librarian

  • 14 oz vegetarian sausage (she recommends and I used Gimme Lean)
  • 1 t sage
  • 1/2 t thyme
  • 1 T olive oil

  • 1 t olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, sliced
  • 2 medium apples, sliced 1/4-1/8 inch thick (I prefer tart apple, also something that holds it shape)
  • 1 t thyme
  • 2 t brown sugar
  • 2 t cider vinegar
  • 1/4 c water

In a bowl mix together the sausage, sage and herbs.  Heat a non-stick skillet up with the tablespoon of oil and add the sausage in small chunks (the veggie sausage is some sticky stuff, you might want to either have a second set of hands or add the oil to the skillet before touching the sausage).  Brown the sausage, breaking it up more if needed.  Remove the sausage from the skillet (a paper towel lined plate works nicely).

Add the remaining teaspoon of oil and let it heat up.  Add the onions and cook for about 5 minutes or until soft.  Now add the apples, thyme, and brown sugar and cook for another 10 minutes or so.  You will want to stir often.  Finally add the sausage back to the pan, stir well and add the vinegar and water.  Continue cooking until everything is hot and serve.

November 11, 2008

November 10: I love leftovers

Filed under: almost a recipe — Tags: , , , , — anotheryarn @ 5:01 pm

I wonder if I’m getting better about leftovers or if I just didn’t think to write about them earlier this year?  Probably the latter, though I’m trying to only write about leftovers when I re-invent them in some manner, not just reheating.  Tonight I took the remaining potato-leek soup (on its last legs, food safety experts would cluck and finger wag at me for eating it, but I figured it had no meat…) and leftover steamed broccoli and made it into potato-broccoli-cheddar soup.  I don’t think it was as good as my recipe for broccoli-cheddar soup but it was still decent and I always feel proud when I use up the last bits of things.

broccolisoup

I dumped the soup into a pan, added a little more milk (about 2/3 cup) to help thin it out and slowly heated it up.  Then I added a generous handful of grated cheddar cheese and stirred until it melted into the soup.  Finally I cut the broccoli into smaller bite sized pieces, added it to the soup and let everything simmer for about 10 minutes.  A couple slices of bread and tada – dinner.

November 6, 2008

November 3: Potato Leek Soup

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , — anotheryarn @ 5:13 pm

With three leeks sitting in the fridge and oodles of potatoes in the pantry potato-leek soup seemed like a no brainer.  Except my first go to cookbook’s recipe called for 5 pounds of leeks.  Eek!  So I emailed my friend Liz and she shared her recipe with me, it turns out to be this recipe on Cooks.com with a couple tweeks.  Then, just as I started to make the soup I remembered the other potato-leek soup recipe I had seen and wanted to try in Totally Vegetarian.  It turns out the two are very similar.  The Cooks recipe uses flour as a thickener, butter versus oil and more potatoes but otherwise very very similar so I sort of combined two recipes and ended up with this soup.  I thought it was a little thin for a dinner soup, perhaps a salad would have rounded the meal out.  I also made a small loaf of no-knead bread to go with the soup, but in my haste I took it out of the oven probably 5 minutes before I should have – it still hit the spot though.

potato-leek-soup

Potato Leek Soup (combined from the two sources mentioned above)

  • 2 T butter or oil
  • 3 leeks, green parts removed
  • 4-5 potatoes
  • 1 cube veggie boullion (I used Rapunzel’s vegan vegetable bouillon – no salt added)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 T corn starch*
  • salt & pepper

Start by washing your leeks.  To do this you cut the leek vertically starting at the green going down to the wite then cut the white parts of the leeks into rounds and soak in a bowlful of water, swish them around with your hands to remove any dirt, sand or grit.  Let them sit while you peel and chop your potatoes, I did a small chop so they would cook faster.  Pick the leeks up out of the water and put them in a colander to drain (dumping them out will dump the sand and grit back on the leeks).

Heat the butter or oil in the pan and add the leeks, let them saute for about 5 minutes then smoosh the boullion cube in the pan until smooth and pour 1 cup of water in.  Stir to make sure the cube is dissolved and pour the remaining 3 cups of water in and the potatoes.  Cover and let this simmer until the potatoes are soft.  Add 1/2 cup of milk and puree all or some of the soup.  I decided the soup looked a little thin so I whisked the cornstarch into the remaining 1/2 cup of milk and added it to the soup then let it simmer a little more. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper.

*cornstarch is totally optional, I used it because I forgot to do a bit of flour before adding the stock and I thought the soup was too thin.

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