Rain was predicted for today, and thunder. Instead, it’s hot outside here in DC! Summer is just around the corner, yay! We’ll enjoy it for today- outdoors!
Every month 2 of my friends and I meet up at each other’s places and make dinner. We switch off between our homes and the themes for the dinners, and the person who hosts also does the cooking. Others bring the wine/beer. Every month I really look forward to my time with A* and C* just because we always end up having fabulous conversations, and have tons of fun. =) Last night I hosted, and we had an array of wonderful food (if I do say so myself), which I will write about later in future posts. But for now, I’ll give you some hints: dinner rolls, a Nutella bar, orzo salad and vegetable soup with parsley crisps.
Although, wonderful company makes food taste even better!
Barley Salad with Veggies
Adapted from: Cooking Light
1 cup uncooked pearl barley
3 cups arugula, lightly chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 large roasted red bell pepper, chopped
1 15oz chickpeas, rinsed and drained
juice of 1 lemon
3 tbsp olive oil
3 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 cup pistachios
Cook barley according to package directions.
Once the barley is cooked, combine: barley, arugula, red bell pepper, roasted red bell pepper and chickpeas in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl mix: lemon juice, oil, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper and stir. Sprinkle the top of the salad with pistachios.
Posted in arugula, barley, chickpeas, lemon juice, olive oil, pistachios, red pepper, roasted red pepper, salad
Tagged arugula, barley, chickpeas, crushed red pepper, lemon juice, olive oil, pistachios, red bell pepper, roasted red bell pepper, salad, vegetables
As many of you have probably noticed through most of these posts, we don’t eat much meat here at Fifth Floor Kitchen. Our thoughts are that if we do want to eat meat, we prefer “happy cows/chickens/etc”. The fact that we didn’t have any meat in our fridge came in handy this weekend. Our fridge broke! Well, the freezer was working, but the fridge was warm. (Yes, the beer did not get as cold.) It’ll be completely fixed today, at 5pm, when the Refrigerator Man comes by and changes a thermostat. I guess these are the pleasures of home ownership? Most of the food survived, except some of the dairy products such as: milk, sour cream and some half-and-half. But we’re back to a happy kitchen.
This accompanied the Cucumber Gazpacho for dinner one night. Also very simple to make, and very springy. The original recipe called for pita bread, but while searching for it at Whole Foods I was concentrating on the “whole wheat”. So instead I grabbed a flatbread. (to me, these two are fairly similar- pita bread is thinner, while the flatbread is a bit thicker and softer) I would say this was similar to a personal pizza, it’s got veggies and cheese (but could have so much more on it). The only exception is the “sauce” is cilantro-hummus-flavored. So as long as you like cilantro, this is defintely worth a try. The veggies on this don’t need to be the same, feel free to add what you like on your flatbread.
Veggie Flatbread with Cilantro Hummus
Inspired by: Vegetarian Times
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
4 garlic cloves, peeled
1 15-oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
juice of 1/2 lime
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup water
2 flatbreads (or pita’s)
2 jarred roasted red peppers, drained & sliced into strips
1 cup spinach leaves
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
To make hummus, add the cilantro and garlic into the food processor. Turn on for about 1 minute until everything is chopped. Then add the chickpeas, lime juice, oil and water. Puree for 3 minutes until the mixture is creamy.
Place the 2 flatbreads on baking sheet. Spread each with the cilantro hummus. Then top with peppers, mushrooms and spinach leaves. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake for about 10 minutes, the flatbread should be crisp and the cheese should be melting.
Posted in chickpeas, cilantro, flatbread, hummus, lime juice, mushrooms, olive oil, parmesan cheese, pita bread, refrigerator, roasted red pepper, spinach, Veggies
Tagged broken fridge, chickpeas, cilantro, cilantro hummus, cucumber gazpacho, flatbread, food processor, fridge, garlic, happy chickens, happy cows, lime juice, meat, mushrooms, Parmesan Cheese, pita bread, pizza, roasted red pepper, spinach leaves, Vegetarian Times, Whole Foods, whole wheat
Yet another quinoa salad! This one sparked my interest since it had broccolini in it- we love it, but have only roasted it. But this salad allowed us to use it, and it was very refreshing. As with many of the other quinoa salads, feel free to play around with the amount of each ingredients. And if you find anything that’s a good addition to this salad, definitely let me know!
Broccolini Quinoa Salad
Adapted from: Sprouted Kitchen Blog
1 cup quinoa, dry
2-3 oz feta cheese
1 cup roasted red peppers, cut into thin slices
1/4 cup capers
1 cup chickpeas, rinsed
3 tbsp parsley, chopped
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground pepper
juice of 1 lemon
1 tbsp olive oil
Bring 2 cups of water and quinoa to a boil. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Place the broccolini right on top of the quinoa after 10 minutes. Cover to finish cooking the quinoa and broccolini. Fluf the quinoa, and roughly chop the broccolini. Toss the roasted red pepper, broccolini, chickpeas, capers, dried oregano, salt and pepper to the quinoa. Add the lemon juice, olive oil and stir again. Cut the feta into small cubes, and add the feta and parsley to the quinoa. Enjoy!
I absolutely love “salads” that don’t exactly look like the typical salad which many think of (lettuce, croutons, dressing, veggies). I prefer using many of the grains that are out there (quinoa, barley, couscous, etc) to make a different type of salad to take for lunch. I have found that quinoa is the easiest (especially cooking it!), and has a great taste.
So having goat cheese in our fridge, and coming across a recipe on one of the food blogs, I tried this one out. I also grab any new ideas to put into my quinoa salads whenever I can. But, anything goes!
Goat Cheese & Roasted Pepper Quinoa Salad
Adapted from: Cooking After Five
2 cups of cooked quinoa
8 cups (16 oz) of fresh spinach
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp of red pepper flakes (or less/more)
1 cup of roasted red peppers, chopped
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
4 basil leaves, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
6 oz goat cheese, crumbled up
With 1 teaspoon of olive oil, saute the fresh spinach for about 3-5 minutes with the minced garlic. Once the garlic begins to wilt, add the red pepper flakes and cook for another minute or two.
Then mix all ingredients in a large bowl, except for the basil and goat cheese. Place the salad in a bowl (or tupperwear for lunch!) and sprinkle with some basil and goat cheese. We had 6 servings out of this for lunch.
Posted in basil, Cheese, goat cheese, Grains, quinoa, roasted red pepper, spinach, Veggies
Tagged barley, basil, couscous, garlic, goat cheese, grains, lemon, quinoa, red pepper flakes, roasted red pepper, salad, spinach