Monday, December 21, 2009

Vegetables Paprikash with Poppy Seeds and Kasha

When we were growing up, my mother would sometimes make Kasha Varnishkes, a traditional Eastern European Jewish dish of kasha (buckwheat groats) with bow-tie pasta and slow-cooked onions. I loved it, so when I saw this recipe that uses kasha as a bed for creamy, paprika-laced vegetables, I knew I had to try it. It may not make for a beautiful photograph, but with a salad and some bread it made for a warming, filling meal on this first night of winter.

Vegetables Paprikash with Poppy Seeds and Kasha
The Best 125 Meatless Main Dishes, Susann Geiskopf-Hadler & Mindy Toomay

The Kasha:
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 cup finely chopped green cabbage
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/4 cups dry kasha (buckwheat groats)
2 1/2 cups water
1/8 teaspoon salt
Several grinds pepper

The Vegetables:
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons paprika
1 medium cauliflower, cut into medium florets
2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
2 ribs celery, cut into 1-inch lengths
1/2 pound mushrooms, quartered
1 large carrot, coarsely chopped
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup light sour cream
3/4 cup plain nonfat yogurt
1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
1/2 cup firmly packed minced fresh parsley
1 tablespoon poppy seeds

In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the oil and saute the cabbage and garlic for about 2 minutes, then stir in the kasha and toast it, stirring frequently, 5 minutes. Stir in the water, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook 20 minutes.

Put the water in a large dutch oven or stockpot and stir in the paprika. Add the onion and celery and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Stir and cook for 5 minutes. Stir the cauliflower, mushrooms, and carrot into the onions so that everything is coated with the paprika. Stir in the salt, cover, reduce heat, and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk the sour cream with the yogurt, horseradish, and parsley. When the vegetables are done, whisk a few tablespoons of the cooking liquid into the sour cream mixture to warm it a bit, then gently stir the sour cream into the pot to coat the vegetables. heat over a tiny flame for 1 minute only.

Arrange the kasha in a ring around the edge of a large platter, drizzling it with a little sauce. Spoon the creamed vegetables into the center and sprinkle with the poppy seeds. Serve immediately.

6 servings

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

South of the Border Pizza

I made this pizza for the first time in a few years, and it is still as great as I remember!

South of the Border Pizza
The Best 125 Meatless Main Dishes, Susann Geiskopf-Hadler and Mindy Toomay

Dough for 1 pizza
1 cup black beans (I use whole 15-ounce can)
1/4 cup water or bean cooking liquid
1 minced green onion
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 garlic clove, minced
1/8 teaspoon salt (I did not use)
A few grinds of black pepper
1 1/4 cups monterey jack cheese (I used mozzarella)
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, minced
1 (4 1/2-ounce) can diced green chilies, drained
1 (2 1/4-ounce) can sliced black olives, drained
2 medium fresh tomatoes, sliced
1 medium avocado, sliced

Preheat oven to 5ooF.

Roll out pizza dough into a 12-inch circle.

Place beans and water in bowl of food processor, along with the green onions, cumin, chili powder, garlic, salt and pepper. Puree until smooth.

Spread Bean mixture over prepared crust. evenly distribute cheese, cilantro, chilies, and olives. Arrange the tomato slices over everything.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden.

Arrange avocado slices on the pizza.

6 servings

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Curried Vegetables with Dahl

This was a nice and healthy meal, full of those Indian flavors that I love. Although I don't have a picture of it, I am going to include the recipe for the rice that I served with it - it was sooo good!

Curried Vegetables with Dahl
Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home, The Moosewood Collective

1 1/2 cups red lentils or yellow split peas
4 or 5 cups water
1 onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 fresh green chile, minced (I used a jalapeno, seeded)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil or ghee (clarified butter)
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced (about 4 cups)
1 tablespoon mild curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger root
2 cups water
1/2 head cauliflower (about 4 cups florets)
2 green or red bell peppers, chopped (about 2 cups)
10 ounces fresh spinach
2-3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Salt to taste

Rinse the lentils or split peas. Lentils cook faster and absorb less water than split peas, so use 4 cups of water for lentils, 5 cups of water for split peas. In a covered saucepan, bring the water and lentils or peas to a boil. reduce heat, uncover, and simmer for about 30 minutes, until tender.
In a large soup pot, saute the onion and chile in the oil for several minutes. Add the sweet potatoes, curry powder, cumin, and ginger and continue to saute for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring often. Pour in the 2 cups of water. Cut the cauliflower into florets and add to the pot. Add the bell peppers, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
While the vegetables simmer, rinse, stem, and coarsely chop the spinach. Pour the lentils or peas and their cooking liquid into a blender or food processor, and puree for 2 to 3 minutes to make a smooth dahl. When the cauliflower is tender, stir in the spinach, the dahl and the lemon juice. Simmer just until the spinach has wilted. Add salt to taste, and serve immediately.

4 to 6 servings


Coconut Basmati Rice
Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home, The Moosewood Collective

1 1/4 cups water
1 cup white basmati rice
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 piece cinnamon stick (1-1 1/2 inches)
1/4 cup dried currants or raisins
1 dried chile (optional) (I didn't use)

In a heavy saucepan with a tightly fitting lid, bring the water to a boil. While the water heats, rinse the rice well. When the water boils, stir in the rice and all of the remaining ingredients. Return to a boil. Stir, cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the cinnamon stick and the optional chile, stir to fluff the rice, and serve.

3 to 4 servings

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Iberian Meat Loaf

This was a nice change from a standard meat loaf. However, it was just a little bit dry, so next time I would either use ground dark meat turkey or a very lean ground beef. I served it with Spanish rice.

Iberian Meat Loaf
Cooking Light, March 2006

1 1/2 pounds ground turkey breast
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce, divided
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup sliced pitted manzanilla (or green) olives
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 large egg whites
1 garlic clove, minced
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine turkey, 1/2 cup tomato sauce, and remaining ingredients except cooking spray in a large bowl.

Shape mixture into a 9 x 5-inch loaf on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Spread remaining 1/2 cup tomato sauce evenly over top of meat loaf. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until a thermometer registers 165°. Let stand 10 minutes. Cut loaf into 12 slices.

6 servings

Monday, October 26, 2009

Pulled Chicken Sandwiches with Mango Slaw

These were good. While I do have a pulled chicken sandwich recipe that I like better, I would definitely make these again simply because of how quick they are to make. Next time, though, I would probably make some more of the chicken mixture because the portion size was just a bit small for a hungry husband :)
The coleslaw was really good, too. My 6 1/2-year-old daughter, Ella, thanked me for putting mango in it!


Black Pepper and Molasses Pulled Chicken Sandwiches
with Mango Slaw
Cooking Light, November 2009

3 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1 tablespoon molasses
3/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2-inch pieces
4 sandwich rolls, cut in half horizontally
12 dill pickle chips

Combine first 9 ingredients in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and cook, stirring occasionally, 23 minutes or until chicken is done and tender. Remove from heat; shred with 2 forks to measure 2 cups of meat. Place 1/2 cup chicken on bottom half of each roll. Top each with 3 pickles and top half of roll.


Mango Slaw:
4 cups packaged coleslaw mix
1 cup chopped mango
1/4 cup vertically sliced red onion
1/4 cup canola mayonnaise (I used light mayonnaise)
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Toss well.

4 servings

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Potato and Chickpea Salad

This potato salad was really good, but I think next time I would cut down on the garlic - it was just a little bit too strong. We had it with barbecued chicken, but I would even serve it as a main dish with some bread.

Potato and Chickpea Salad
Vegan Italiano, Donna Klein

1 1/2 pounds small red-skin potatoes
1/4 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 medium plum tomatoes, chopped
1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped
1 (16-ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/4 pound fresh spinach or arugula leaves, chopped (optional) (I didn't use)

Place the potatoes in a large saucepan or medium stockpot with salted water to cover; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to a gentle boil and cook until the potatoes are just tender, about 15 minutes, depending on size. Drain and set aside to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the broth, oil, vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper. Stir in the tomatoes and onions. Let stand a few minutes to allow the flavors to blend.

As soon as the potatoes are cool enough to handle, yet still quite warm, cut them in half or in quarters, depending on size. Stir the dressing a few times, and add the warm potatoes along with the chickpeas and spinach (if using). Toss gently until the potatoes are thoroughly coated. Serve warm or at room temperature. Alternatively, let cool to room temperature and refrigerate a minimum of 3 hours, or up to 2 days (or overnight if using spinach), and serve chilled or return to room temperature.

6-8 servings

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Slow and Easy White Bean Cassoulet

When I saw this recipe posted on the Cooking Light Message Boards, I immediately put it on my menu for this week. Not only is it wallet-friendly, but since it is made in a slow-cooker I was able to throw it together in the morning, freeing up my (usually hectic) afternoon a little bit.
I was really good, and I would definitely made it again. I served it with crusty bread and a green salad.


Slow and Easy White Bean Cassoulet
Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker, Robin Robertson

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
8 ounce baby carrots, halved (I used 2 regular carrots, chopped)
3 cups cooked, or 2 (15-ounce) cans, Great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/2 cup vegetable stock
1/4 cup white wine
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons dried thyme
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Heat one tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, carrots and garlic, cover, and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.

Transfer onion mixture to a 4 quart slow cooker. Add beans, tomatoes, tomato paste, stock, wine, bay leaves and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.

When cassoulet is nearly ready to serve, lightly toast the breadcrumbs in the remaining tablespoon oil in a small skillet over medium-high heat.

To serve, remove and discard bay leaves, top with the toasted breadcrumbs, and garnish with the parsley.
4-6 servings

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Cauliflower Soup with Parsley

This soup got a "WOW!" reaction from Chaim. It really was that good! Even the kids loved it. I can't wait to make this again!
I pureed all of it since I wanted a creamy soup.


Cauliflower Soup with Parsley
Vegan Italiano, Donna Klein

1 large head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cored and cut into 1/2-inch florets
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste (I used about 1/8 teaspoon)
4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Bring a medium stockpot filled with salted water to a boil over high heat. add the cauliflower and cook until just tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Drain well and set aside.

Place the oil in the stockpot and heat over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, 1 m minute. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the cauliflower; cook, stirring often, until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the broth, salt, and black pepper; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, 10 minutes. transfer about two-thirds of the soup to a food processor fitted with a knife blade, or to a blender (I used an immersion blender right in the pot). Process until smooth and pureed. Return mixture to the pot and stir in the parsley. Cook over low heat until heated through. Serve hot.

6 servings

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Chicken Tacos with Mango-Avocado Salsa

These tacos were so easy to make, and really good - perfect for a weeknight meal. And the salsa was great - I'd even make it on it's own to eat with tortilla chips.

Chicken Tacos with Mango-Avocado Salsa
Cooking Light

1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper (I used 1/8 teaspoon)
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 cup diced peeled mango
1/2 cup diced peeled avocado
1/2 cup chopped tomato
1/3 cup chopped onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon minced jalapeño pepper (I removed seeds)
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas

Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Combine first 4 ingredients; stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt. Rub over chicken. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add chicken; cook 4 minutes on each side or until done. Remove chicken from pan; let stand 5 minutes. Cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices.

While chicken cooks, combine mango and next 6 ingredients (through jalapeño); stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Heat tortillas according to package directions; top with chicken and salsa.

4 servings

Monday, October 19, 2009

Pasta with Roasted Pepper Pesto

This was so good! The combination of smoky roasted red peppers and sweet sun-dried tomatoes, with just the teeniest hint of spice from the cayenne, worked so well together. We all loved it, and the kids want to have the leftovers for lunch tomorrow :)
The only change I made was to use regular pasta because I did not have multigrain.


Multigrain Pasta with Roasted Pepper Pesto
Kosher by Design Lightens Up, Susie Fishbein

1 small head roasted garlic (see note at bottom)
3 red bell peppers
6 sun-dried tomato halves
2 teaspoons pine nuts
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 (14.5-ounce box multigrain rotini pasta (such as Barilla Plus)

Preheat broiler.

Cut peppers in half and discard the seeds. Place on a jelly-roll pan, skin-side-up, and broil until skin is blackened. Place in a sealed zip-top bag. When cool enough to handle, remove from bag and slip the skins off.

Place the prepared peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, pine nuts, olive oil, vinegar, water, basil, garlic powder, salt, cayenne pepper, and the roasted garlic cloves into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse to form a thick sauce.

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and immediately transfer to a serving bowl. Top with the pesto and toss to combine. Serve hot or at room temperature.

6 servings
*To roast garlic: Slice off top 3/4 inch of a head of garlic to expose the cloves. Spray with cooking spray, or drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Wrap in foil and bake at 350F until golden, fragrant and soft, about 45-60 minutes.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Bourbon and Brown Sugar Flank Steak with Garlic-Chive Mashed Potatoes

I've made this recipe several times, always to rave reviews. It's great to make when you want something that tastes special, but doesn't take long to make.
This time I just made garlic mashed potatoes to serve alongside, but the potatoes in the recipe are really good. I served the meat on top of baby greens.


Bourbon and Brown Sugar Flank Steak with Garlic-Chive Mashed Potatoes
Cooking Light

Steak:
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup minced green onions
1/4 cup bourbon
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 (2-pound) flank steak, trimmed
Cooking spray
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
Potatoes:
3 pounds small red potatoes
6 garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1/3 cup 2% reduced-fat milk
2 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
Garnish:
8 fresh chives, cut into 1-inch pieces

To prepare steak, combine first 7 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag; add steak. Seal and marinate in refrigerator 8 hours or overnight, turning bag occasionally. Remove steak from bag, reserving marinade.

Prepare grill.

Place steak on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Let stand 10 minutes. Cut diagonally across grain into thin slices.
Combine reserved marinade and cornstarch in a saucepan. Bring to a boil; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.
To prepare potatoes, place potatoes and garlic in a large Dutch oven; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 30 minutes or until tender. Drain.
Return potatoes and garlic to pan, and place over medium heat. Add sour cream, milk, butter, salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Mash potato mixture to desired consistency with a potato masher. Stir in chopped chives. Mound 3/4 cup potatoes on each of 8 plates; arrange 3 ounces steak around each serving of potatoes. Drizzle 1 tablespoon sauce on each plate; sprinkle with chive pieces, if desired.

8 servings

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Bourbon Chicken

This sauce from this was excellent! However, next time I would use boneless, skinless chicken thighs because the chicken breasts got a little dry.
I did cut back on the crushed red pepper for the kids - I just used a little sprinkle. And no, there is no bourbon in this recipe :)


Bourbon Chicken
recipezaar.com, recipe #45809

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/4 teaspoon ginger
3/4 crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup apple juice
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup soy sauce

Heat oil in a large skillet. Add chicken pieces and cook until lightly browned. Remove chicken.

Add remaining ingredients, heating over medium heat until well mixed and dissolved. Add chicken and bring to a hard boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

Serve over hot rice.

4 servings

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Quick Meat Loaf

This is going to be my new go-to recipe for meat loaf. It is so good - incredibly moist, and it cooks in half the time of a regular meat loaf. And I love how the sweet ketchup plays off the slightly spicy meat.

Quick Meat Loaf
Cooking Light

1/3 cup chopped green onions
3 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 pound ground sirloin
1 large egg, lightly beaten
6 tablespoons ketchup, divided
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 400°.

Combine first 9 ingredients in a large bowl; add 1/4 cup ketchup. Mix beef mixture with hands just until combined. Shape beef mixture into a 9 x 4–inch loaf on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes. Brush top of meat loaf with remaining 2 tablespoons ketchup. Bake 7 additional minutes or until done. Slice loaf into 8 equal pieces.

4 servings

Monday, August 24, 2009

Beer Bread

I love this stuff! I don't make it very often (because I really can't eat just one piece of this!), but it is definitely a favorite recipe here. I don't have a loaf pan, so I baked it in an 8x8-inch baking dish.
I've only ever made it plain, but there is a list of mix-ins at the end of the recipe.


Beer Bread
The Pastry Queen, Rebecca Rather

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar
1 (12-ounce) bottle beer or ale
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 350F. Generously grease a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan with butter or cooking spray. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Pour in the beer and stir until just incorporated. (The dough will be sticky and heavy.) Pour half the melted butter into the bottom of the prepared pan. Spoon in the bread dough and pour the remaining butter on top. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until the bumpy top is golden brown. Remove from the pan.

This bread is best served warm, but it is still good cooled.

10 servings (yeah, right, sure!)
Mix-ins:
Chopped chives
Chopped chile peppers (such as jalapenos)
Chopped green onions
Any grated cheese

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Vine-Ripened Tomato Salad with Parsley Vinaigrette

This salad is AWESOME!!! Make sure to have plenty of good crusty bread to dip into the juices - it's quite addicting!

Vine-Ripened Tomato Salad with Parsley Vinaigrette
Vegan Italiano, Donna Klein

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 large garlic clove, fiely chopped
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
6 small vine-ripened tomatoes (about 4 ounces each), cut into 1/2-inch thick slices

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper; stir in the parsley. Let stand about 5 minutes to allow the sugar to dissolve. Add the tomatoes and toss gently yet thoroughly to combine. Let stand at room temperature about 15 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. Toss again and serve. Alternatively, cover and refrigerate a minimum of 3 hours, or overnight, and serve chilled or return to room temperature.

4 servings

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Beef Carnitas

This meat is so good! It has so much flavor, and it's so tender from the long cooking time. It also made the house smell fabulous while it was cooking! I doubled the recipe, and used a chuck roast that I cut up myself.
I served it in some warm corn tortillas, and made a black bean salad to have on the side.


Beef Carnitas
Cooking Light

Cooking spray
1 cup chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, crushed
2 pounds beef stew meat, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup less-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 large unpeeled orange wedge

Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion; sauté 4 minutes or until tender. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add beef; sauté 5 minutes or until beef is browned on all sides. Stir in broth, sugar, salt, and pepper; nestle orange section into beef mixture. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 1/2 hours or until beef is tender. Remove and discard orange. Continue simmering, uncovered, 8 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates, stirring frequently.

Leftovers can be wrapped tightly in heavy-duty plastic wrap or foil, and placed in a zip-top plastic freezer bag; they will keep in the freezer for up to three months.

4 servings

Black Bean Salad with Mexican Flavors

This is a really nice salad - filling, but not heavy, with a light dressing that complements, but doesn't overpower, the ingredients.
The author suggests serving it with scrambled eggs and tortillas, but if you are not a vegetarian this would be great with some grilled chicken or tacos.


Black Bean Salad with Mexican Flavors
A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen, Jack Bishop

2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 medium ripe tomato, cored and diced
1 medium avocado, halved, pitted, scooped from the skin, and diced
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro leaves
1 small jalapeno chile, stemmed, seeded, and minced
3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Kosher salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Combine the beans, tomato, avocado, cilantro, and chile together in a large bowl.

Whisk together the orange juice, cumin, and salt to taste in a small bowl. Whisk in the oil. Pour the dressing over the black bean salad and toss gently. Adjust the seasonings, adding salt to taste, and serve.

4-6 servings

Friday, August 7, 2009

Chickpea Curry with Whole Spices

This was really good, and a great way for me to get the Indian flavors that I love without the spiciness that the kids hate!

Chickpea Curry with Whole Spices
A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen, Jack Bishop

2 tablespoons canola oil
1 cinnamon stick, about 4 inches long
1 bay leaf
10 whole black peppercorns 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds (optional)
1 medium onion, minced
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh gingerroot
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon turmeric
3 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro leaves
Kosher salt

Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the cinnamon stick, bay leaf, peppercorns, and coriander seeds, if using, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the onion and cook until it starts to brown, about 4 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, garlic, ginger, cumin, and turmeric and simmer until the tomato juice evaporates and the mixture looks dry and begins to sizzle, 3 to 4 minutes.

Stir in the chickpeas and water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer briskly until the sauce thickens slightly and the flavors are blended, about 5 minutes. Add the cilantro and salt to taste. Pick out and discard the cinnamon stick and bay leaf before serving. The stew can be refrigerated in an airtight container for several days. Warm over low heat to serve.

4 servings

Basmati Rice Pilaf

Basmati Rice Pilaf
A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen, Jack Bishop

2 tablespoons unsalted butter or canola oil (I used 1 tablespoon)
1 1/2 cups basmati rice
6 whole green cardamom pods, lightly crushed, or 1 cinnamon stick
2 1/4 cups water
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Heat the butter in a medium saucepan, preferably nonstick, over medium heat until foaming. Add the cardamom pods or cinnamon stick and cook until aromatic, about 30 seconds. Add the rice and cook, stirring constantly, until the rice smells toasted but has not colored, about 3 minutes. Add the water and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook (without opening the lid), until all the liquid has been absorbed, about 15 minutes.
Remove the pot from the heat and set aside, covered, for 10 minutes to allow the rice to finish cooking. Fluff rice with a fork and serve.
4 servings

Monday, August 3, 2009

Summer Tomato Salad

This tomato salad is sooo good! Make sure to serve it with some good bread for dipping into the juices - it's fabulous!

Summer Tomato Salad
Allrecipes.com, PEGGYLEBLANC

1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 pint yellow pear tomatoes, halved (I used all red grape tomatoes)
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
freshly ground black pepper to taste
ground red pepper to taste
salt to taste

In a bowl, toss the cherry tomatoes, yellow pear tomatoes, green onions, garlic, basil, cilantro, black pepper, red pepper, and salt. Refrigerate 30 minutes and toss again before serving.
6 servings

Spanish Omelet with Peas, Potatoes, and Saffron

This was a easy, flavorful, make-ahead recipe that, together with a tomato salad and some crusty bread, made for a fantastic summer meal.


Spanish Omelet with Peas, Potatoes, and Saffron
A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen, Jack Bishop

This traditional Spanish omelet should be served chilled or at room temperature.

Kosher salt
1/2 pound red potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1/2 pound peas in pods, shelled (about 2/3 cup), or frozen peas
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crumbled between your fingers
6 large eggs
Freshly ground black pepper

Bring about 1 quart water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add salt to taste and the potatoes and cook until the potatoes are just beginning to soften but are not at all mushy, about 7 minutes. Add the peas and continue to cook until the vegetables are barely tender, about 3 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a medium ovenproof non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and 1/4 teaspoon salt and cook until softened, 8 to 10 minutes. (If the onion starts to turn brown, lower the heat.) Add the saffron and cook until aromatic, about 1 minute. Set the pan aside to let the onions cool slightly.

With a fork, beat the eggs, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and several grindings of pepper together in a medium bowl until well combined. Beat in the peas, potatoes, and onions, scraping the skillet as clean as possible.

Move an oven rack to the top position and heat the broiler. Heat the remaining oil in the skillet over medium-low heat. When the pan is hot, swirl the oil to coat the pan bottom evenly. Add the egg mixture and cook, occasionally sliding a spatula around the edges of the pan to loosen the omelet, until the bottom of the omelet is golden brown and the eggs are runny just on top, about 8 minutes.

Place the pan directly under the broiler and cook just until the top is golden brown and set, 1 to 2 minutes. watch carefully to prevent the omelet from burning.

Remove the pan from the broiler. The omelet can be cooled to room temperature in the pan if desired. Once cooled, the omelet can be removed from the pan whole. Cut into wedges and serve, or chill for several hours.

(*Note: If you do not have an ovenproof skillet, you can wrap the handle of your skillet with a few layers of heavy duty foil.)

3-4 servings

My New Favorite Pizza Dough

I decided to try a new pizza dough for dinner last night and we all loved it! The crust was chewy with lots of flavor. This is going to be my regular pizza dough from now on!
(*Note: I did use the semolina flour, but if you can't find it, substitute more all-purpose flour. It also doubles beautifully.)


Semolina Pizza Dough
Vegan Italiano, Donna Klein

2 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/8 teaspoon sugar
1 cup warm water (105F to 115F)
1 (1/4-ounce) package active dry yeast (about 1 tablespoon)
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup semolina flour
1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus additional as necessary

Grease a large bowl with 1 teaspoon of the oil and set aside. In another large bowl, dissolve the sugar in the warm water. Sprinkle in the yeast and let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining oil and salt. With a wooden spoon, gradually stir in the semolina flour and enough of the all-purpose flour to make a firm, soft dough.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes, adding additional all-purpose flour as needed to prevent sticking. Gather the dough into a ball and place in prepared bowl, turning to coat with the oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until doubled in bulk, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead briefly to release any air pockets. Shape the dough into a ball. The dough is ready to be shaped and rolled as needed.

(Bake at 500F.)

Makes 1 (14-inch) pizza crust

Monday, July 27, 2009

Tilapia Tacos with Peach Salsa

Let me start out by saying that the peach salsa in this recipe is really good! However, the breading would not stay on the fish very well, and it was not crispy. I think that if I would make this again I would probably just sprinkle the fish with some spices and pan-fry it in a little oil.

Tilapia Tacos with Peach Salsa
Cooking Light

Salsa:
2 cups finely chopped peeled peach (about 2 medium)
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced

Remaining ingredients:
1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 pound tilapia, cut into 2-inch strips
Cooking spray
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas

To prepare salsa, combine first 8 ingredients in a medium bowl. Let stand 30 minutes at room temperature.

Preheat oven to 375°.

Combine panko, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl. Add fish to bowl, tossing to coat. Place fish in a single layer on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375° for 10 minutes or until desired degree of doneness, turning once.

Heat tortillas according to package directions. Divide fish and salsa evenly among tortillas.

4 servings

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Barbecue Chicken with Mustard Glaze

Sorry - I'm a little behind in my posting.
I made this chicken about a week and a half ago, and it was fantastic and very easy. I can't wait to make this one again!

Barbecue Chicken with Mustard Glaze
Cooking Light

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon sherry or red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
8 (6-ounce) skinless, bone-in chicken thighs
Cooking spray

Combine first 5 ingredients in a small bowl. Combine ketchup and next 3 ingredients (through mustard) in a small bowl; stir with a whisk.

Heat a large grill pan over medium-high heat. Rub spice mixture evenly over chicken thighs. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add chicken to pan; cook 12 minutes. Turn chicken over. Brush with half of ketchup mixture; cook 12 minutes. Turn chicken over. Brush with remaining ketchup mixture; cook 2 minutes or until a thermometer registers 165°.

4 servings

Confetti Couscous

I made this Israeli couscous salad to have with the chicken. It did take a little bit of work, but it was very easy and really good. The only change I made was to cook it in a grill pan in the house, and I cut the recipe in half.


Confetti Couscous
Cooking Light

2 baby eggplants, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
2 yellow squashes, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
2 red bell peppers, seeded and cut into quarters
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
2 cups water
1 1/2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 cups uncooked Israeli couscous
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

Prepare grill to medium-high heat.

Brush eggplant, squash, and bell peppers evenly with 4 teaspoons oil. Sprinkle evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Place vegetables on grill rack; grill 3 minutes on each side or until slightly charred. Cool and chop. Place vegetables in a large bowl.

Bring 2 cups water and broth to a boil in a medium saucepan. Stir in couscous. Reduce heat, and simmer 8 minutes or until couscous is tender. Drain and rinse with cold water. Add couscous, remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper to vegetable mixture; toss. Combine vinegar and mustard in a medium bowl, stirring well. Gradually add remaining 1/4 cup oil to vinegar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Drizzle vinegar mixture over couscous mixture; toss to coat. Stir in basil.

8 servings

Monday, July 6, 2009

Bow Ties with Tomatoes, Feta, and Balsamic Dressing

This recipe caught my eye when I got the latest issue of Cooking Light, but I was not sure if I wanted to try it or not until I saw Ashley's review on her blog Big Flavors From a Tiny Kitchen (http://bigflavors.blogspot.com/). I am so glad I made it, because it was really good - the flavors went together wonderfully, and the grapes made it refreshing on a warm day. I will definitely be making this one again!

Bow Ties with Tomatoes, Feta, and Balsamic Dressing
Cooking Light

6 ounces uncooked farfalle (bow tie pasta)
2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup seedless green grapes, halved
1/3 cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped shallots
2 teaspoons capers
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 (4-ounce) package crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese

1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain. Combine cooked pasta, tomatoes, grapes, and basil in a large bowl.

2. While pasta cooks, combine vinegar and next 6 ingredients (through pepper) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Gradually add oil to vinegar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Drizzle vinaigrette over pasta mixture; toss well to coat. Add cheese; toss to combine.

4 servings

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Chickpea-Vegetable Salad with Curried Yogurt Dressing

This was a really great recipe for a warm day - no cooking needed, and really quick, too! I served it with whole wheat pita.

Chickpea-Vegetable Salad with Curried Yogurt Dressing
Cooking Light

Dressing:
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons curry powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon bottled minced garlic (I minced 1 fresh clove)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (8-ounce) carton plain fat-free yogurt (I used low-fat)

Salad:
2 cups finely shredded carrot
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced yellow or red bell pepper
1 1/2 cups chopped plum tomato
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
2 (15 1/2-ounce) cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
12 cups chopped romaine lettuce

To prepare the dressing, combine the first 8 ingredients in a small bowl; stir mixture with a whisk.

To prepare the salad, combine carrot and next 5 ingredients (carrot through chickpeas) in a large bowl. Pour 1/2 cup dressing over carrot mixture, tossing gently to coat. Place 2 cups lettuce on each of 6 plates, and drizzle each serving with about 1 tablespoon dressing. Top each serving with 1 1/3 cups carrot mixture.

6 servings

Monday, June 29, 2009

Pasta with Pomodoro Sauce

Dinner really doesn't get much easier than this!

Pasta with Pomodoro Sauce
Cooking light

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes, undrained and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup finely sliced fresh basil
8 cups hot cooked penne (about 1 pound uncooked)

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add garlic; cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly (do not brown). Stir in pepper, salt, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 7 minutes or until slightly thick, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in basil. Serve over pasta.

6 servings

Monday, June 22, 2009

Spaghetti with Meat Sauce

I don't usually follow a recipe when I make meat sauce, but I thought I'd give this one a try. I'm glad I did, because I really liked it. And it's a great recipe to throw together when you're short on time.

Spaghetti with Meat Sauce
Cooking Light

12 ounces uncooked spaghetti
3/4 pound ground sirloin
1 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
3/4 cup dry red wine
1 (26-ounce) bottle low-fat spaghetti sauce
2/3 cup 2% reduced-fat milk (I used soy milk)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat.

While pasta cooks, heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the beef; cook until browned, stirring to crumble. Drain beef, and set aside.

Add onion and garlic to pan; sauté 3 minutes. Add wine; cook 3 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates.

Stir in beef and spaghetti sauce; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the milk, salt, and pepper; cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve sauce over pasta.

6 servings

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Quick Vegetarian Chili with Avocado Salsa

I have been eyeing this recipe for a long time, and I am so glad that I finally made it - YUM!!!
I couldn't find quick-cooking barley, so I partially cooked pearl barley and added 2/3 cup of that.


Quick Vegetarian Chili with Avocado Salsa
Cooking Light

2 teaspoons canola oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 (4.5-ounce) can chopped green chiles
2/3 cup uncooked quick-cooking barley
1/4 cup water
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained
1 (14.5-ounce) can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can vegetable broth
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
6 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream
6 lime wedges
Avocado Salsa (recipe follows)

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper; sauté 3 minutes. Add chili powder and next 4 ingredients (chili powder through green chiles); cook 1 minute. Stir in barley and next 4 ingredients (barley through broth); bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes or until barley is tender. Stir in cilantro. Serve with sour cream, lime wedges, and Avocado Salsa.

Avocado Salsa
1/2 cup finely chopped peeled avocado
1/3 cup chopped seeded tomato
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
1 tablespoon finely chopped seeded jalapeño pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/8 teaspoon salt

Combine all ingredients; toss mixture gently. Serve salsa immediately.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Garlic Burgers

These burgers were great! I love that it uses portobello mushrooms along with the beef to add bulk, allowing you to have a nice big burger without too much fat. The mushrooms also add lots of moisture.
I served these with coleslaw (recipe follows) and roasted sweet potato wedges.


Garlic Burgers
Kosher by Design Lightens Up, Susie Fishbein

For the burgers:
1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 large shallot
2 cloves fresh garlic
6 ounces portobello mushroom caps
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/8 teaspoon cracked black pepper
2 teaspoons dried parsley
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
nonstick cooking spray

For the garlic spread:
1 teaspoon canola oil
4 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 cup light mayonnaise

6 whole wheat buns
1 tomato sliced, optional, for garnish

Place the ground beef into a large mixing bowl. Place the shallot and garlic into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade and pulse until finely chopped. Add the portobello mushrooms and pulse until the mixture resembles ground beef; don't over-pulse or it will turn into a paste.

Add the mushroom mixture to the beef, along with the red pepper flakes, black pepper, parsley, soy sauce, and Worcestershire sauce. Use your hands to gingerly toss until the meat is all mixed and seasoned.

Spray a grill pan with nonstick cooking spray. Heat the pan over medium heat.

Make 6 patties; they should be about 1-inch thick and 6-inches in diameter. Grill for about 6 minutes on each side.

Over medium-low, heat the canola oil in a small pot. Add the sliced garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until garlic is fragrant, about 3 minutes, making sure the garlic does not burn. Add the garlic powder, onion powder, and chili powder. Remove from heat and stir in the mayonnaise.

serve the burgers, topped with the garlic spread, on whole wheat buns. garnish with sliced tomatoes if desired.

6 servings


Cider-Mustard Slaw
Cooking Light

Combine half of one (16-ounce) package cabbage-and-carrot coleslaw mix, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 2 tablespoons cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon coarse ground mustard, and 1/8 teaspoon salt.

4 servings

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Sweet-and-Sour Stir Fry

I'm so sorry for this awful, unappetizing photo. It really does not do this meal justice, because this was seriously the best stir-fry I have ever made. It had tons of flavor, and was sweet but not cloying like the take-out day-glo orange stuff. I was just so tired and hungry last night that when dinner was ready I just wanted to eat, so I didn't take the time to get a better picture. So please overlook this and make this dish!!!
I doubled the meat and soy-cornstarch mixture, and used boneless, skinless chicken thighs.


Sweet-and-Sour Stir Fry
Rick & Lanie's Excellent Kitchen Adventures, Rick Bayless & Lanie Bayless

For the sauce and marinade:
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup rice vinegar
4 tablespoons soy sauce, divided (I used low-sodium)
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon cornstarch

For the stir-fry:
8 ounces raw pork tenderloin or boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1/4-inch slices
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
1 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch strips
6 ounces snow peas or sugar snap peas
1/4 head green cabbage, sliced 1/8-inch thick (3 packed cups)
1/2 cup cilantro leaves

Using a garlic press, crush garlic into a small bowl. Add the ginger, sugar, vinegar, 2 tablespoons of the soy sauce and the ketchup.

Combine the cornstarch and the remaining 2 tablespoons soy sauce in a bowl. Add the meat and toss to coat.

Set a wok or very large (12-inch) skillet (non-stick works best) over high heat. When very hot, add 1 tablespoon of the oil. Swirl wok or skillet to coat evenly. Immediately add the sliced onion. Stir with a spatula to coat with oil. Add the bell pepper strips and stir to coat. Add the peas. Cook - stirring with a spatula nearly continuously - until the onion looks a little soft, about 2 minutes from when the onions went in. Add the sliced cabbage. stir continuously until the cabbage begins to wilt, about 2 minutes more. Scrape vegetables from the wok or skillet onto a serving platter. Wipe out with paper towels and set it over high heat again.

When very hot add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Swirl wok or skillet to coat evenly. Add the meat and its marinade. Stir with a spatula to coat with oil, then spread out flat in wok. Wait 10 seconds or so, then start slowly turning and stirring meat until browned - about 2 minutes (a little more for chicken).

Immediately add the vegetables and sauce to the pan. Cook - stirring continuously - until sauce boils and vegetables are hot, about 1 minute. Add the cilantro and toss a few more times. Scoop onto a serving plate.

4 servings

Penne Pasta with Roasted Fennel, Cherry Tomatoes, and Black Olives

This pasta was really good with lots of flavor, and I was able to use up a little bit of the huge rosemary plant in my backyard (I also grow oregano, so this dish was perfect!).

Penne Pasta with Roasted Fennel, Cherry Tomatoes, and Black Olives
Cooking Light

1/2 pound fennel bulb
1/2 cup kalamata olives, pitted and halved
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
8 ounces uncooked penne (about 2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (3 ounces) freshly grated pecorino Romano cheese (I used Parmesan)

Preheat oven to 450°.
Cut fennel bulb in half lengthwise; discard core. Chop the fennel into bite-sized pieces. Combine fennel, olives, rosemary, oregano, and tomatoes in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish. Sprinkle fennel mixture with pepper; drizzle with olive oil. Toss well to coat. Bake fennel mixture at 450° for 30 minutes or until fennel is tender, stirring once.
Prepare pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain; place in a large bowl. Add fennel mixture and salt, and stir to combine. Add cheese; toss to combine.

4 servings
Italic

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Pizza Sauce

Tonight I made pizza for dinner. I kept it simple with a plain cheese topping, but I used this sauce recipe. I doubled it and put half of it in the freezer to use another time.

Basic Pizza Sauce
Cooking Light

This makes a chunky sauce; if you prefer a smoother consistency, you can puree the sauce in a food processor with one tablespoon water. Make-ahead tip: Prepare the sauce a day or two ahead and refrigerate it, or make a double batch and freeze the extra for up to one month.
Cooking spray
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup white wine
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (14.5-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, undrained
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until tender. Add garlic to pan; sauté 30 seconds. Stir in wine; cook 30 seconds. Add tomato paste, oregano, pepper, and tomatoes. Reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes or until thick. Remove from heat; stir in basil and vinegar. Cool.
Note: Nutritional analysis is for 1 1/3 cups Basic Pizza Sauce.
Spicy Pizza Sauce Variation: Add 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper with the oregano and black pepper; omit basil.

Yield: 1 1/3 cups.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Farfalle with Tuna

This is a quick, simple, flavorful pasta dish made with ingredients that most people have in the pantry. Even the kids gobbled it up :)

Farfalle with Tuna
The Pasta Cookbook, Jenni Wright

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 (14-ounce) can chopped Italian plum tomatoes
3 tablespoons dry white wine
8-10 pitted black olives, cut into rings (I used kalamata)
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
3 1/2 cups dried farfalle
1 (6-ounce) can tuna in olive oil (I used chunk light in water)
Salt and ground black pepper

Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet or saucepan, add the onion and garlic and fry gently for 2-3 minutes until the onion is soft and golden.

Add the tomatoes to the pan and bring to a boil, then add the white wine and simmer the mixture for a minute or so. Stir in the olive and oregano, and salt and pepper to taste. Cover and cook for 20-25 minutes, stirring from time to time.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large saucepan of salted boiling water according to package directions.

Drain the canned tuna and flake it with a fork. Add the tuna to the sauce along with about 4 tablespoons of the pasta cooking water. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

Drain the cooked pasta well and turn into a warmed large serving bowl. Pour the tuna sauce over the top and toss to mix. Serve immediately.

4 servings

Monday, June 1, 2009

Pan-Fried Chicken

I love fried chicken, but I feel guilty if I make it more than once every few years. So when I came across this lighter version I had to try it - and it did not disappoint! The spices in the coating were fabulous, and it was moist and crispy without being greasy.
This is definitely going to be on regular rotation in our house!


Pan-Fried Chicken
Cooking Light

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon hot paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 bone-in chicken breast halves, skinned
2 bone-in chicken thighs, skinned
2 chicken drumsticks, skinned
1/4 cup peanut oil (I used canola)

1. Sift together first 6 ingredients; place mixture in a large zip-top plastic bag. Sprinkle salt evenly over chicken. Add chicken, one piece at a time, to bag; seal. Shake bag to coat chicken. Remove chicken from bag, shaking off excess flour. Place chicken on a cooling rack; place rack in a jelly-roll pan. Reserve remaining flour mixture. Loosely cover chicken; chill 1 1/2 hours. Let chicken stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Return chicken, one piece at a time, to flour mixture, shaking bag to coat chicken. Discard excess flour mixture.

2. Heat peanut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan. Reduce heat to medium-low, and cook 25 minutes or until done, carefully turning every 5 minutes.

3. Line a clean cooling rack with brown paper bags; arrange chicken in a single layer on bags. Let stand for 5 minutes.

4 servings

Potato Salad with Herbs and Grilled Summer Squash

This is a really good fresh tasting potato salad, and I will definitely make this again! My changes: I used zucchini instead of yellow squash and cooked it in a grill pan; I left out the tarragon and increased the basil; and I substituted 1 tablespoon drained capers for the cornichons.

Potato Salad with Herbs and Grilled Summer Squash
Cooking Light

Salad:
2 pounds small red potatoes
3/4 pound yellow squash, cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch slices
Cooking spray
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Dressing:
1/3 cup chopped fresh chives
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped cornichons
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

2. To prepare salad, place potatoes in a large saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 18 minutes or until tender. Drain; cut potatoes into quarters, and place in a large bowl. Set aside.

3. Lightly coat squash with cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Place squash on grill rack; grill 2 minutes on each side or until browned and tender. Remove squash from heat, and add to potatoes.

4. To prepare dressing, combine chives and remaining ingredients in a small bowl; stir with a whisk. Pour dressing over potato mixture, tossing gently to combine. Serve salad warm or chilled.

6 servings

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Fiesta Chicken Tacos with Mango Salad

These are supposed to be Fiesta Chicken Tacos with Mango and Jicama Salad, but since I didn't have any jicama I made it without it. And they were really good!

Fiesta Chicken Tacos with Mango and Jicama Salad
Cooking Light

Salad:
3/4 cup (3-inch) julienne-cut peeled jicama (I left out)
1/2 cup sliced peeled ripe mango (I used a bit more)
1/4 cup sliced red onion
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 teaspoon salt
Dash of black pepper

Tacos:
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into thin strips
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground chipotle chile pepper (I used about half that)
1 cup sliced red bell pepper
1 cup sliced red onion
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
1 cup mixed salad greens

1. To prepare salad, combine first 8 ingredients.
2. To prepare tacos, heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chicken evenly with chili powder, cumin, and chipotle pepper. Add chicken mixture to pan; sauté 3 minutes. Remove from pan.
3. Heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in pan. Add bell pepper and 1 cup onion; cook 3 minutes or until crisp-tender. Return chicken mixture to pan; cook 2 minutes or until chicken is done. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt.
4. Heat tortillas according to package directions. Arrange 2 tablespoons mixed greens, about 1/3 cup chicken mixture, and about 2 tablespoons salad in each tortilla; fold over.

4 servings

Pasta with Sautéed Tomatoes, Olives, and Artichokes

This is a great weeknight meal, coming together in the time it takes for the pasta to cook. The recipe says it makes 6 servings, but those would be pretty skimpy servings. For us it was the perfect amount to serve 2 adults and 2 children, along with a salad and some bread.
Pasta with Sautéed Tomatoes, Olives, and Artichokes
Cooking Light

1 teaspoon olive oil
2 cups halved cherry tomatoes (I used grape tomatoes)
1/2 cup thinly sliced pitted kalamata olives
1 (14-ounce) can quartered artichoke hearts, drained
4 cups hot cooked ziti (short tube-shaped pasta)
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1/3 cup (1 1/4 ounces) shredded Asiago cheese (I used Parmesan)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add cherry tomatoes, olives, and artichokes; cook 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Place pasta in a large bowl. Add tomato mixture, basil, cheese, salt, and freshly ground pepper; toss well.


6 servings

Monday, May 25, 2009

Potato Salad

I didn't like this potato salad quite as much as I'd hoped to. It wasn't bad, it just wasn't great. I think the problem was a little too much mustard and too much celery (I'm not a huge celery fan). However, I would maybe make it again and just cut down on those two ingredients.

Hickory House Potato Salad
Rick & Lanie's Excellent Kitchen Adventures, Rick Bayless & Lanie Bayless

1 1/2 pounds red-skinned potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
Salt
1 garlic clove, peeled
2 celery stalks, cut in half lengthwise, and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces
1/4 cup sweet pickle relish
2 tablespoons chopped roasted red bell pepper
1/3 cup mayonnaise (I used light)
3 tablespoons prepared mustard
1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Fill a medium saucepan with 3 inches of water. Add potatoes and 2 teaspoons salt, and set over high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium. Cook 10 minutes or until potato slices are tender. Set colander in sink. Drain potatoes and allow to cool. Scoop potatoes into a large bowl. use a pastry blender or 2 table knives - one held in each hand - to roughly chop into 1/2-inch pieces.

Crush garlic through a garlic press onto potatoes. Add remaining ingredients and a 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir to combine thoroughly. Taste and add more salt if you think necessary. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Potato salad gets better if made several hours - even a day or two - ahead.

4 to 6 servings

Friday, May 22, 2009

Moroccan Meatballs in Tomato Sauce

These smelled sooo good while they were cooking, and they tasted pretty darn good, too! You can serve them alone as an appetizer or serve them with some rice, pasta or couscous for a main dish.

Moroccan Meatballs in Tomato Sauce
Rick & Lanie's Excellent Kitchen Adventures, Rick Bayless & Lanie Bayless

1 1/4 pounds ground beef or lamb
3 teaspoons paprika, separated (I used 2 1/2 teaspoons regular, 1/2 teaspoon hot)
2 teaspoons ground cumin, separated
Leaves from 12 sprigs fresh parsley, finely chopped (about 3 tablespoons), separated
Salt
1 large garlic clove, peeled
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
1/4 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 small onion, peeled and cut into 8 pieces

Place beef or lamb in a large bowl. Measure in 1 1/2 teaspoons of the paprika, 1 teaspoon of the cumin, half of the chopped parsley and 1 teaspoon salt (I used less). Mix or knead to thoroughly distribute flavoring through the meat. Roll meat into 1-inch balls (about 1 tablespoon meat mixture), laying each on a plate as rolled. Set aside.

Turn on food processor. Drop garlic through feed tube. Let machine run until garlic is chopped, then stop. remove lid and scrap down garlic from sides of processor. Add drained tomatoes, olive oil, tomato paste and onion. Add the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika, 1 teaspoon cumin and parsley. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Process until nearly smooth. Scrape into pan or deep skillet that is about 10 inches across (size is important here). Set over medium heat. Bring to a boil and cook 2 to 3 minutes. Remove pan from heat.

Nestle meatballs into sauce in a single layer. Swirl pan gently to ensure all meatballs are covered with sauce. Set over medium heat with lid slightly ajar and cook 10 to 12 minutes, until meatballs are cooked through. If sauce is very thick, add a little water. Spoon onto individual plated and serve.

4 servings

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Lentil Sloppy Joes

Despite it's cutesy name (I hate cutesy names), these sloppy joes were really good - a little sweet, a little spicy, and very messy! (I learned the hard way that they are easier to eat as an open-faced sandwich.)


Snobby Joes
Veganomicon, Isa Chandra Moskowitz & Terry Hope Romero

1 cup uncooked lentils
4 cups water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium-size yellow onion, cut into small dice
1 green bell pepper, cut into small dice
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons chile powder
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
1/4 cup tomato paste
2-3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon prepared yellow mustard
4-6 kaiser rolls or sesame buns, sliced in half horizontally

Pour the lentils and water into a small saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, lower the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the lentils are soft. Drain and set aside.

About 10 minutes before the lentils are done, preheat the oil in a medium-size saucepan over medium heat. Saute the onions and peppers for about 7 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and saute for a minute more.

Stir in the cooked lentils, chile powder, oregano, and salt. Add the tomato sauce and tomato paste. Cook for about 10 minutes. Add the maple syrup to taste and the mustard, and heat through.

Turn off the heat and let the pot sit for about 10 minutes, so that the flavors can meld, or go ahead and eat immediately if you can't wait.

4-6 servings


I served the sloppy joes with this coleslaw, which was fantastic!


Tangy Mustard Coleslaw
Cooking Light

7 cups finely shredded green cabbage
1 cup thinly vertically sliced red onion
1 cup grated carrot
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
2 tablespoons reduced-fat mayonnaise
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne

Combine cabbage, red onion, and carrot in a large bowl. Combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl, and stir well with a whisk. Add the dressing to the cabbage mixture, and toss to coat. Cover and chill 20 minutes. Stir before serving.

7 servings

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Vegetarian Burritos


This is one of my favorite meals to make when I really don't feel much like cooking. I simply spread canned refried beans on top of a flour tortilla, top with rice that I cook up with some taco seasoning added to the water (I've included the recipe I used below) and shredded cheddar cheese, roll it up, and stick it in the toaster oven to heat through and melt the cheese. If you're feeling particularly lazy, you can use store-bought taco or fajita seasoning and instant rice. Or even a boxed Spanish rice mix.

I like to make a batch of this and keep it in the pantry with my spices to use as needed:

Taco Seasoning II
allrecipes.com (PNCHANDRA)

6 teaspoons chili powder
5 teaspoons paprika
4 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
2 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

In a jar with a tight fitting lid, combine chili powder, paprika, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper and cornstarch. Close lid securely, and shake well to mix contents. 7 teaspoons is equivalent to 1 (1.25 ounce) package of taco seasoning.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Moroccan Chicken with Green Olives and Lemon

This chicken was really good! I love recipes that give you a healthy, tasty meal without having to buy too many ingredients. And since I had chicken in the freezer, and a Meyer lemon tree in my backyard, the only thing I had to buy was the olives.
This would be great served over couscous, but since Chaim doesn't like couscous I served it over basmati rice.


Moroccan Chicken with Green Olives and Lemon
Bon Appetit

2 Meyer lemons or regular lemons
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, halved, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1 tablespoon paprika
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 cups low-salt chicken broth
1 4 1/2-pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces, skin removed (I used 4 thighs & 4 drumsticks)
1/2 cup green olives

Cut 1 lemon into 8 wedges. Squeeze enough juice from second lemon to measure 2 tablespoons; set wedges and juice aside. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and sprinkle with salt and pepper; sauté until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Add next 5 ingredients; stir 1 minute. Add broth; bring to boil. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper; add to skillet. Add lemon wedges. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until chicken is cooked through, turning occasionally, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer chicken to platter. Add olives and 2 tablespoons lemon juice to skillet. Increase heat to high; boil uncovered to thicken slightly, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Pour over chicken.

4 servings

I made this spinach "salad" to have with the chicken and it was great!


Mixed Herb "Salad"
Cooking Light

16 cups torn spinach (about 3/4 pound)
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped black olives (I used Kalamata)
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper (I used about half that)

Steam half of spinach in a Dutch oven, covered, 2 minutes or until spinach wilts. Place steamed spinach in a medium bowl; repeat procedure with remaining spinach. Wipe pan with paper towels.
Add oil to pan; place over medium heat until hot. Add parsley, cilantro, and garlic; saute 1 minute. Remove from heat; stir in spinach, olives, and remaining ingredients. Serve warm.

4 servings

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Potato-Goat Cheese Gratin

This was a little time consuming to make, but it was worth it. Thin slices of tender potatoes, layered with creamy goat cheese and sweet leeks, all buried under a crisp breadcrumb topping. I mean, really, what's not to like? :)

Potato-Goat Cheese Gratin
http://desertculinary.blogspot.com/ (adapted from Better Homes & Gardens)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/4 cups thinly sliced leeks
1 1/2 cups milk
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 large garlic clove, minced
2 1/4 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1/8-inch thick sliced
Cooking Spray
4 ounces (about 1 cup) crumbled goat cheese
1/3 cup breadcrumbs (I used panko)
1 ounce (about 1/4 cup) freshly grated Parmesan cheese

In a medium skillet, heat the oil over medium-low. Stir in leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, about 18-20 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

In a medium bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons of the milk and the flour. Pour in the remaining milk, and whisk in the salt, pepper, nutmeg and garlic until combined.

Arrange half of the potato slices in a 2 quart baking dish coated with cooking spray. Scatter the top with the cooked leeks and crumbled goat cheese. Pour half the milk mixture on top. Arrange the remaining potatoes over the top, and then add the rest of the milk mixture. Cover the pan with foil and place into the oven to bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake until the potatoes are tender, about 25 minutes.

Combine the breadcrumbs and Parmesan in a small bowl. Scatter it onto the potatoes and continue to bake, uncovered, until the topping has browned, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow it to sit for 10 minutes before serving.

4 main dish or 8 side dish servings

Monday, May 4, 2009

Baked Costa Rican-Style Tilapia with Pineapples, Black Beans, and Rice

I really, really loved this tilapia recipe! The creamy black beans, sweet pineapple, and slightly spicy salsa (I used mild mixed with just a bit a medium) mixed in with the rice went perfectly with the citrus-flavored fish.

Baked Costa Rican-Style Tilapia with Pineapples, Black Beans, and Rice
Ingrid Hoffmann, foodnetwork.com

1 cup long-grain white rice
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 lime, juiced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon sugar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 (5 to 7-ounce) tilapia fillets, rinsed and patted dry
2 cups jarred or homemade tomato salsa
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups diced fresh pineapple
(I added some paprika sprinkled on top for some color)
2 limes, thinly sliced

Combine the rice and chicken broth in a pot over medium heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the rice is tender and has absorbed all of the liquid, about 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the orange juice, lime juice, oil, 2 tablespoons of the cilantro, the garlic, and sugar; season with salt and pepper. Add the tilapia fillets to the marinade, turning to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for 20 minutes, turning occasionally.

Stir together the cooked rice, salsa, beans, pineapple, and remaining 2 tablespoons of the cilantro in a 2 or 3-quart baking dish. Remove the tilapia from the marinade, reserve the marinade, and lay the fish fillets over the rice mixture, overlapping if necessary. Pour the reserved marinade over the fish. Shingle the lime slices over the fish. Bake until the fish flakes easily, is opaque, and cooked through, 25 to 30 minutes. Garnish with chopped cilantro before serving.

4 servings

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Lentil Burritos

These are a different take on burritos, and I really liked them a lot! I couldn't find roasted garlic tomato sauce, so used regular tomato sauce and added in a garlic clove that I roasted myself. And in the interest of saving some money I used mozzarella instead of cheddar, since I already had it in the house (I do think cheddar would be better in these, though, because it has a stronger flavor). And, of course, I completely forgot to serve the sour cream I got to have with it!

Lentil Burritos
Southern Living

1 cup dried lentils
4 cups water
1 small onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese
16 (7-inch) flour tortillas
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce with roasted garlic
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon green taco sauce
1 teaspoon cornstarch
Toppings: sour cream, guacamole

Simmer lentils in 4 cups water in a saucepan over medium heat 20 minutes or until tender; drain, reserving 1 cup liquid.

Sauté onion and bell pepper in hot oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat 5 minutes or until tender. Remove from heat; stir in lentils and cheese. Spoon mixture evenly down center of each tortilla, and roll up. Place in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish.

Bring 3/4 cup reserved liquid, tomato sauce, cumin, and taco sauce to a boil in a saucepan. Stir together remaining 1/4 cup reserved liquid and cornstarch until smooth. Stir into sauce mixture, and cook over medium heat, stirring often, 10 minutes. Pour over burritos.

Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Serve with desired toppings.

8 servings