Saturday, May 31, 2008

Up to our ears in beets and greens

My husband has the greenest of green thumbs. Our gardens really go gangbusters under his watchful eye. This is our third year of gardening at this house, and the frequent additions of home grown compost ash from our wood burning stove. Our early crops are in full swing and I have spent the past two weekends trying to come up with enough recipes to use up the bounty.

Oodles of Rainbow Chard and Spinach --
I have made two "Greek Greens and Sweet Onion Pie" in the past week. Last night I really caramelized the onions and it really added depth to the pie. We love this recipe! I ate leftovers last week for breakfast!

For a bbq last week I made a version of Swiss Chard with Chickpeas and Couscous. I used Israeli couscous -- which is bigger in size and has a great texture. I nixed the pine nuts and used cashews, and added a good heaping of garam masala (home made mix).

With some leftover spinach I made SPinach stuffed shells, using low-fat cottage cheese.

Two weeks ago when spinach was just coming in I made Chickpea and Spinach Curry. I added tofu to this mix and it was so yummy. It also makes a ton, so there were plenty of leftovers for lunches.

Also on my list today: Spinach Balls, Spinach Gnocchi

Lettuce -- pretty much just making salads and using on sandwiches

Beets -- I love them, and never know what to do with all of them.
In the oven right now is: Chocolate Beet Cake from Susan V at Fat-free Vegan Kitchen.

Marinating in the fridge are the beets for Roasted Beet and Three Radish Salad
Did I mention that we have three varieties of radishes?

I really need some recipes that freeze well. I am off to the field for 5 weeks (coming home on Sat. nights), and want to take yummy homemade food with me. I really hate eating at less-than-stellar restaurants -- not too mention where I am going is not known for its vegetarian friendliness. I won't feel like, or have time, for cooking at the field house, so whatever I can make on the weekends and eat on all week is the plan. If you have any suggestions, please drop them my way!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Carb-loading for a cause

We have been really busy with work and yard work, so cooking has been sporadic. This past week I have made a cheese pizza with a spare dough I had in the freezer; shrimp tacos (yum!); and this winner from the local paper (Daily News Journal):
Whole-Wheat Penne with Artichoke-Red Pepper Sauce.
I made half the recipe and it was enough for 5 generous servings (the original recipe serves 6). We had a salad and garlic bread to go with. This was Friday night's dinner -- lots of carbs because I ran in my first 5k on Saturday morning! Yea for me!

Whole-Wheat Penne with Artichoke-Red Pepper Sauce (modified from original recipe)

two 14-oz. cans quartered artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained
12-oz. jar roasted red peppers, drained
2 Tbsp. EVOO
4 tsps. lemon juice
1 tsp. dried basil
1/8 tsp. salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 lb. whole-wheat penne or other small pasta
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Cook pasta according to directions. Reserve some of the cooking liquid (maybe 1/2-3/4 cups).

While pasta cooks, combine artichoke hearts, red peppers, EVOO, lemon juice, basil, S & P in a food processor. Puree until smooth.

When pasta is done, drain then return to pot. Add the artichoke sauce and the reserved liquid. Stir and warm over low heat. Serve immediately topped with Parmesan cheese.

Update on the St. Patty's Day Fare (see post below)
The cake was amazing and there was very little left to bring home (even though we were late to the party and everyone had already eaten). So, the extra Guinness didn't seem to matter too much.

The "Irish Casserole" was really good. Perfect hearty fare for a cold crisp Irish night. I will definitely make it again next year!