Tag Archives: vegetables

Meal For One: Black and Green Pasta

This what I had for lunch today.  The squid ink pasta came from my mom.  It’s an egg pasta that’s been dyed a deep black color with squid ink, which also gives it a salty, kind of oily taste as well.  The great thing is that it cooks in 3 minutes.  For Halloween, I will probably make a “spooky” pasta with a nice bright orange pumpkin sauce, but today I just wanted a very simple, very light lunch, so this is what I made.  Note: this makes a light pasta dish for one; to make it more hearty, add in any of the following: 1 c. chopped broccoli, 3/4 c. shelled edamame, 4 ounces of cooked shredded chicken and/or 1 small zucchini chopped.

However, as it is, this is a very simple 5 ingredient recipe, not including the salt and pepper. Continue reading

Mushroom Ragout, from the “Keep Going Til It Tastes Good” Cooking School

My dear friend and fellow foodie/home cook and vegetarian extraordinaire Paul came over to hang out with us for a while tonight and in honor, I made a simple, tasty dinner of a mushroom and leek ragout.  Mostly because I had most of the stuff for pasta and needed to fill my quota of 2 or 3 pasta dishes a week.

Like…well, every dish I make, this is a fairly flexible recipe.  And by “recipe,” I mean “guideline.”  And by “guideline,” I mean, “loosely affiliated series of ingredients, directions and methods.”  Continue reading

Nobody gets left behind: leftovers

What I do with leftovers:

From the milk-roasted chicken on Sunday, I had two bone-in chicken breasts left over.  What to do with them?  Hm.  Think.  Think Think Think.

Well, I also had some Spanish chorizo I picked up at Eastern Market on Saturday as well.  Chorizo is a spicy, smoked pork sausage that comes in many varieties.  I also had leftover chopped green and red bell peppers bagged up in the freezer, and some fresh spinach and portabella mushrooms left from Josh making pizza for himself for dinner.  And I had rice.  Well that all sounds pretty good.  Continue reading

Got Milk?

It was a pretty fantastic weekend all around on my end.  Headed out to Detroit’s Eastern Market again on Saturday, which you know I love, and spent the afternoon making leek onion rings and bbq beef sandwiches.

And today, Josh and I spent an hour learning how to make pasta carbonara and a pappardelle dish with the lovely Francesca Girarraffa in a cooking class at Hollanders, which was quite a bit of fun and totally worth the very reasonable price of $13 a person.  For attending, we also each got a 10% off coupon for Hollanders that day, which I used to treat myself to two new baking sheets.  Which I totally needed.  Honestly.

Anyway, then I moved to make dinner.  Originally, I had planned on doing a sort of Chinese-inspired dinner.  I’d planned on roasting the pumpkin we got from this past week’s farm share and then using it to make some dim sum, along with some chicken beggar’s purses, some veggie fried rice and egg drop soup.  However, by the time we were on our way home after the cooking demo, shopping, lunch at Sabor Latino and more shopping at By the Pound, I wasn’t feeling quite up to that level of culinary intrepidness.  Instead I decided to make a relatively low key dish that I’d found on Saveur, a recipe of British chef Jamie Oliver’s that’s basically a chicken roasted in milk. Continue reading

Onion and bacon tart, in pictures:

Make a little bed out of puff pastry.  Bake until…well, puffy, about 15 minutes at 350F.

Sauté one giant onion, sliced, a few cloves of garlic, sliced, and a few sprigs of thyme, not sliced, in some olive oil and butter, cooking slowly for about a half hour until thoroughly caramelized, like this:

Roast bacon in the oven at 400F for about 15 minutes.  Drain and lay over puff pastry crust.

Layer caramelized onions over bacon

Garnish with goat cheese.

Cut and serve with soup

Ta da.

Potato, Squash and Arugula Quesadillas: the non-recipe recipe

We got a good box from the farm share this week—purple potatoes, squash, peppers, a giant head of celery and even a giant one and a half pound tomato that I have fondly named Big Al (after my svelte but otherwise impressive grandfather):

To use up some of the potatoes and squash, as well as some of our own deck-grown red bell peppers and some frozen ground sirloin, I figured we could make ourselves a quick and tasty lunch of quesadillas–beef and cheese ones for Josh (manly quesadillas) and vegetarian ones for me (I’m feeling a tad delicate today).  Inspired by a recipe I have stored away from Bon Appetit for potato, greens and goat cheese quesadillas, I figured…hey, why not?

I call this a non-recipe recipe because..well, I don’t have any real exact measurements here, and you can substitute pretty much any of the ingredients that you like.  It’s more of a method/idea suggestion kind of article today. Continue reading

Fall’s First Meatloaf

Happy Labor Day!

Well, there it goes.  The end of my summer.  Not with a bang.  Not really a whimper.  More of an “Ehhhhh I don’t wanna.”    Or a “Meh.”  A sullen “meh” though, not one of those nonchalant “I just don’t care” mehs.  Not here.

But instead of doing a giant barbecue (mmm barbecue) as a last hurrah to the last day of summer, I instead decided to put my best foot forward into fall with a dinner meal inspired by fall colors and fall comfort food: meatloaf.

All right, I’ll be honest.  I had my first slice of meatloaf about two years ago.  Seriously.  I’d never had it before that.  I always figured it was because my mom was a vegetarian, and while she made many meat dishes for the rest of us omnivores, why mold raw meat if you don’t have to?  Surprisingly, this was all apparently new to my mom, who is convinced that she made us meatloaf when we were kids.  In fact, when I told her she didn’t, she was absolutely taken aback and incensed and insisted on calling my sister to verify that she made meatloaf.  It went something like this:

Mom: What?  I made you guys meatloaf all the time.  Don’t you remember?  I used to put three strips of bacon across the top.
Me: Uh, no mom, I don’t know who you made that for, but it wasn’t us.
Josh: stifling a laugh
Mom: Well we’ll see what your sister says about this.  Picks up phone, dials.  Arica, didn’t I make you guys meatloaf when you were kids? Brief pause WHADDYA MEAN “NO?!” Continue reading

Crêpes! And other goodies from Detroit's Eastern Market

Once again, we found ourselves heading to Detroit’s Eastern Market this morning, sort of on a last minute whim, and a bit later than we normally go.  It was a beautiful morning and just what I needed to start the weekend off right.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the market here in Ann Arbor, but I have a special place in my heart for Eastern Market.  I think it’s the energy of the whole place.  You know, you pull up, you find a place to park…somewhere….reasonably within a walking distance and head on it.  There’s huge bins of watermelons on the side and beautiful ceramic planters for sale.  And once you start getting towards the center, there’s the fish fry place (“You buy, we fry”) and the vendors setting up their barbecue grills.  During the day when that barbecue has gotten started, Eastern Market smells like heaven.  And then, of course, the karaoke.  This morning when we walked in, about 9am, we were greeted by one lone but enthusiastic man singing Van Morrison’s “Moondance” to an audience of about three. Classic and fantastic.

Continue reading

The Immunity Boosting Salad

So I’m on my own again today.  And still sick.  It’s been over a week at this point and while I don’t feel terrible, I just can’t get the congestion, tiredness and fever to go away.

Well it’s moved on towards lunch time and I need to eat something.  I don’t have a car today, which takes care of that pesky lazy thought of “Well, just go to Panera and get some soup.”  And while, yes I do live just half a mile from a Panera–and 3/4 a mile from Whole Foods–my tiredness and the 83F took care of any inclination to walk someplace where I can simply hand over a credit card and some kind person will hand me a giant bowl of already prepared food.  No, we’re on our own today.  And since we’re tired and tired of being sick (and for some reason, speaking in the royal “we”), we want something that’s not just delicious but about as healthy as we can possibly stand it to be.

As luck would have it, I have a freezer full of chicken breasts and a fridge of nutritional goodies, so I can indeed accomplish this weighty task and I will not submit to the tiny voice in my head that says, “You could just order in Chinese.”  Even though my favorite Chinese restaurant is simply around the block (near the Panera, y’know) and they not only deliver but deliver quickly and the delivery guy is great.  But no.  No, we’re cooking ourselves well today.

So this is what I put together: a salad.  No, not just a salad.  THE salad.  An easy, delicious salad full of flavor, vitamins and antioxidants.  In fact, there is not a single unhealthy thing on this salad.  It is the exact opposite of certain other meals I have made while sick that may or may not have contained over an entire day’s worth of fat.

The great thing is that I made this with ingredients that I normally keep around anyway: chicken, fresh baby spinach, lemon, red onion (okay, I normally don’t but red onion, but I got some from the farm share this week), walnuts, olive oil, part-skim mozzarella, strawberries and basil.  Little known fact about me: I bleed strawberries.  It really freaks out the phlebotomist, but eventually they get over that when they realize I am made of deliciousness.  (Ok I made that last part up.) Continue reading

Pretend you’re a chicken…parmesan

I just want to state for the record that I’ve never made chicken parmesan and I didn’t actually look for a recipe for it before making this, but for the life of us, Josh and I just could not decide on what to have for dinner.  I mulled over what we had in the house (a thawed chicken breast, a bunch of groceries from the farm share) and thought at first of doing a chicken paillard with a tomatillo sauce and maybe some potatoes on the side…but then I thought, well we have tomatoes too…how about a tomato sauce…and we have mozzarella…we could top it with that….and then I realized I was basically thinking of chicken parmesan but without so much parmesan…So I figured, I can just throw something together and we’ll see how it  comes out!

Fake Chicken Parmesan Continue reading

Green Goddess Potato Salad…

…for when those ribeyes you grilled just aren’t fatty enough.

The inspiration from this came from FoodTV’s 5 Ingredient Fix, during an episode of which the host made a side dish called “Green Goddess Rice.”  Josh and I decided to grill steaks tonight and were thinking of a side dish.  He ingeniously suggested using up some of the couple pounds worth of redskin potatoes we got from our farm share this week.  I thought, hmmm.  Rice, potatoes…both starches, right?  Sure.  Let’s just make a potato salad with green goddess dressing instead.

So…that’s what I did.

I steamed a bit over a pound of redskin new potatoes.  I figured the steaming would be good, as it would retain the most nutrients from the potato skin, which I would then liberally coat with a layer of fat.  Mostly healthy fat, though…right?  Right…?  Yeah.  Anyway.  Recipe below! Continue reading