27 February 2012

Vegetable Lentil Soup

Tonight for dinner, I wanted to make something quick with vegetables we have from our produces boxes. I decided on soup because I can throw anything in it and it usually comes out well

2 servings

1/2 onion, chopped
3 - 4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 yellow carrot, chopped
1 regular carrot, chopped
3 celery ribs, chopped
2 smallish potatoes, chopped
1/2 jalapeno, diced
1/4 cup red lentils, washed
1 t better than bouillon veggie broth paste
black pepper
1 t curry powder (it got a bit lost, I would probably increase this next time)

toasted bread, to serve

In a 2qt sauce pan, add a bit of olive oil and allow to heat up. Add onions, garlic, and celery and cook until softened. Add carrots and potatoes and stir to cover in oil. Allow to cook a bit, then add broth paste. Mix until all the vegetables are covered. Add enough water to cover, and turn the heat up to high. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer, cook until vegetables are nearly at desired doneness. Add lentils and allow to cook until tender about 5 - 10 minutes. Mash up everything with a potato masher or immersion blender. Adjust seasoning and serve with toasted herb bread.

Look at our fantastic CSA potatoes, so good!

Both my husband and I enjoyed this quite a bit. It was a tad bit salty because I added too much broth paste, other than that an easy, tasty soup.

26 February 2012

Thanksgiving 2011

A post about Thanksgiving in February? I had the photos uploaded to my Picasa web album, so I thought I would make a post about it.

This was my plate. I was just planning on getting a Celebration Roast from the hippy store, but all they had were Hazelnut Cranberry Roast En Croute. It was amazing! It was good warm or cold, with gravy or with cranberry sauce. Delicious. The rest of my plate was stuffing we made in the crockpot, whole wheat rolls, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes with the Punk Rock Chickpea Gravy. I wasn't too thrilled with the gravy, it was super thick and not super flavourful. I had to add A LOT of spices to it.

We never had cranberry sauce growing up, but since being with my husband, I have been introduced to the awesomeness that is homemade cranberry sauce and I love it. We have frozen cranberries in our freezer from our CSA and maybe it is time to make some more sauce!

This was my husband's plate. He said it was the best turkey he had ever had. He essentially poached a half turkey breast in white wine, butter, and fresh herbs. He has the same sides as I do, but with turkey gravy.

I'm testing the doneness of the chickpeas in the crockpot and drinking some tasty home brew cider

Last, but certainly not least, was the amazing apple pie.

This is probably the best apple pie I have ever eaten. It cooks for two hours and then has to cool, but it most definitely worth it. I can't find the recipe that my husband used, but I'll update this if he gives it to me. We ate it for breakfast for the next couple days after Thanksgiving. We served it with Coconut Bliss Mint ice cream. Soo good.

We spent all day making food and when everything was done, we ate about two or three bites. The leftovers, though, kept us sustained for nearly a week and were fantastic.

25 February 2012

Dinner club: Chickpea Patties

Recently, we started having a weekly dinner club. Every Tuesday night, we rotate cooking responsibilities. It is a fun way to socialise in a low pressure environment, on a weekly basis. It is also a great way to use up the massive amount of salad greens we get with our CSA and food delivery! This is what we made the first week.

Chickpea cutlets
- I have tried these both baked and cooked on the stove top and I like them best slightly burnt from cooking in cast iron skillet
mashed potatoes
salad with local greens, carrots, red onion and a vinegar, oil, basil salad dressing

Everyone enjoyed the meal. We tend to make the cutlets when we have guests over because they are delicious and seem to be liked by people who eat meat as well as those that do not.

We have now been doing dinner club for about 2 months now and I look forward to it every week!

24 February 2012

Tofu, broccoli, mushroom stir fry

For my birthday last year, my sister bought me a cast iron wok. We have recently started using it more and I absolutely love it. It is big, heavy, and amazing. The temperature gradient created from where it sits on the stove top to sides is gradual, so you can cook items of differing densities in the separate parts of the wok.

Tofu - we have started getting tofu from our local health food store. They sell it out of a plastic food bucket and it is the best tofu I have ever had. You don't really need to spice it up because it tastes really good on its own.
minced garlic
minced ginger - I feel a little sleazy using this out of jar instead of fresh, but it is really easy
soy sauce
rice vinegar
red pepper flakes
splash or two of water
sesame seeds for garnish


Heat a wok or other skillet over medium heat, add a tablespoon of sunflower or peanut oil and allow to heat through. Add garlic, stir for about 30 seconds. Add cubed tofu, stir and allow to brown for a few minutes. Add broccoli, soy sauce, vinegar, and red pepper flakes. In order to cook the broccoli to the right consistency, I added a bit of water and covered the mixture with a lid, allow to cook for a few minutes until mostly done. Add mushrooms and ginger. Cook until everything is the desired tenderness. I like to put the broccoli on the bottom of the wok to cook in the juices, and the tofu up the sides. Serve with rice and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

This was tasty. I really, really like the tofu a lot. I don't think I have ever proclaimed love for tofu before, but this stuff is amazing. I don't even press it, the consistency is already firm enough.

23 February 2012

Planet Box Lunches

So it has been a while since I have posted, but we are still cooking a lot around our household. We are currently doing a food delivery service and a winter CSA. The delivery comes right to our door every week filled with all organic fruits and vegetables - not local because we get things like oranges, bananas, and fresh blueberries. For the CSA we pick it up every three weeks and it usually full of carrots, potatoes, apples, lettuce, local milled wheat and oats, honey, etc. It is amazing, but a lot of food to receive all at once. It is a good thing it is vegetables that store really well.

Anyway, we have been eating better because we are always flush with fresh produce and I have been enjoying putting together awesome lunches.

If you are wondering about our great lunchboxes, you can find all about them on their website, Planet Box. They are pretty expensive, but we really like them. We have the rocket magnets, because you know, we are scientists!

My husband put this together for me this past weekend. It is Field Roast smoked apple sage sausage, salad with carrots, apples, and red bell pepper, chipotle spiced mashed potatoes, caramelized onions, salad dressing made with curry powder (do this! it is delicious!), an orange, and a leftover biscuit from our biscuits and gravy earlier that day.

I made this after a ladies night where we had a taco bar. I turned the TVP taco meat into a taco salad with sauteed onions and bell peppers. Actually, my husband made all the food for ladies night and then I kicked him out. He is really good to me. Next we have some pear, blueberries, a leftover macaroon, vegan mayo mixed with sriracha, bell peppers and carrots, raisins, Lara bar, orange, and tortilla chips.

In January, I test cooked the vegetarian meal for Once a Month Mom February meals. We have been slowly eating all of those meals. It is a great way to pull together an easy lunch because everything pretty much unfreezes by lunch time. On this day we had, Chickpea patties, bell pepper and blueberries, kiwifruit, BBQ sauce, carrot sticks, raisins, and a lemon poppy seed muffin.

I'm really sorry for the terrible pictures! Early morning is not the best time to take pictures in my kitchen.