Tag Archives: jalapeno

Food Matters Project #42: Potato & Corn Fritters

Happy Memorial Day weekend!  I hope all of you had a long weekend full of relaxing, great barbeque food and fun with friends and family!  We stayed home, but had a chance to visit with friends we don’t spend a lot of time with.  It’s been great catching up, and exploring some new spots around town!  To finish up a delicious weekend, we made a recipe for the Food Matters Project!

There is no host this week, rather, it’s a Wild Card post- you can pick your favorite spring/summer recipe.  We went a different route, and chose a FMP recipe which was already posted before, but we had not made it that week.  It sounded delicious, we had all of the ingredients (when does that happen?), and wanted a side with our dinner.

To check what recipes Fifth Floor Kitchen has participated in during the Food Matters Project, take a peak here.  Also, check out fellow FMP bloggers Memorial Day recipes:

 Lexi's Kitchen: Watermelon Salad  
 Keely Marie: Calico Beans
 Cooking Poetry: Raw Strawberry Cheesecake
 Meadows Cooks: Lentil Rice Chili
 Let's Cook & Be Friends: Chocolate-Cherry Panini & Tomatoes

Last summer we attempted fritters for a Food Matters Project recipe.  They didn’t turn out as expected, but a cook can never give up (try, try, try again!).   This was a fast recipe, although it does involve a bit of frying- so it’s probably not the best for a mid-summer recipe.  But DC’s weather was a bit gloomy today, and cool enough to keep our windows open- so I figured this would be worth a shot!  We served these fritters with a Greek Salad, a more flavorful option to a slice of bread!  Check out how other FMP participants made this Sweet Potato and Corn Fritters with Thai Dipping Sauce recipe (back in November!).

Potato & Corn Fritters

Potato & Corn Fritters
Adapted from: The Food Matters Cookbook (page 88)

We served these fritters with a dollop of our Spicy Mayo Sauce.  Definitely worth making for this recipe, or for other dishes as a topping.

4 medium potatoes, grated & squeezed dry
1 cup corn, defrosted
1 jalapeño, finely chopped
4 green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 large egg
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

In a medium bowl mix together the poatoes, corn, jalapeño, green onions, cilantro, egg, flour, salt and pepper.  This can be done ahead of time and refrigerated for a couple of hours before cooking.

Pour about 1/8 inch of oil into a large skillet over medium heat.  When the oil is hot, drop about a 1/4 cup of potato mixture into the oil and allow it to spread out.  Cook until golden brown, then turn once and cook again.  Both sides should be cooked in about 5 minutes.  Serve hot, or at room temperature.  We recommend frying these in batches (of about 2-3), so the pan does not get too overcrowded.

Food Matters Project #31: Polenta with Mushroooms

It’s another Food Matters Project post!  This weeks recipe was chosen by Sandra, of Meadows Cooks.  From Mark Bittman’s Food Matters Cookbook, she had chosen the recipe for Polenta Cakes with Garlicky Mushrooms.  Check out what other Food Matters Project participants made here.  For the original recipe, check out Sandra’s post.

Sam and I have been trying to clean out (and by that I mean eat everything) from our pantry, freezer and fridge.  It’s a good way to start 2013- with some organization!  So when I read the recipe and didn’t have all of the ingredients, I decided to use what I did have.  Fortunately, Mark Bittman’s recipes are flexible and forgiving!  The only problem is, the recipe might just not turn out like you had thought.

As you check out everyone else’s posts, you’ll see that everyone has polenta cakes.  Unfortunately, ours did not settle and harden.  So we were left with just polenta- but that did not stop us from eating it.  So this version is slightly different than the original recipe, but I think it’s equally delicious and worth a try!

Polenta with Mushrooms

Polenta with Mushrooms
Inspired from: The Food Matters Cookbook & Honest Fare

1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup mushrooms, finely diced
2 shallots, minced
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup corn meal
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Mushroom Topping:
1/2 tbsp olive oil
2-3 bacon strips
1/4 red onion, chopped
10-15 mushrooms, sliced
1 jalapeño, chopped (optional)

Heat the olive oil in a skillet, then add the mushrooms and shallots.  Sauté for about 5 minutes, next add in the garlic and cook for another minute.  Then remove from heat, and set aside.

In a medium pot, heat 4 cups of water until it is boiling.  Lower the heat and add the corn meal, while stirring so no clumps form.  Continue to stir the corn meal until it creamy and begins to thicken, about 5 minutes.  Then add in the salt, pepper and mozzarella cheese.  Continue to cook and stir for another 10 minutes, then remove from heat.  Add in the mushroom mixture, stir well to combine all of the ingredients.

In a skillet, heat the olive oil, then add in the bacon strips.  Allow them to cook until they are crisp.  Remove them from heat, and set aside.  Once cooled, chop the bacon into smaller pieces

In the olive oil and bacon grease, heat the onions, mushrooms and jalapeño for about 5 minutes.  Once cooked, remove from heat and toss in the chopped bacon.

Pour the cooked polenta (corn meal) into a bowl, top with the mushroom topping, and serve.

Food Matters Project #24: Asian Vegetable Rolls with Peanut Sauce

Can you believe that the Food Matters Project has been going on for over 6 months?  Yikes, how time flies when you’re trying out delicious recipes!  If you haven’t been with us on this blog for that long, here’s a little recap:

The Food Matters Project is made up of a group of bloggers (there are so many of us) who are interested in making recipes from the Food Matter Cookbook by Mark Bittman.  Each week one blogger is the “host” and chooses a recipe- and we all make it.  The Food Matters Cookbook is very open to interpretation, therefore making it perfect for this project- all of you should check out what each blogger made.  See what recipes Fifth Floor Kitchen has made here.     

This weeks host is Alyssa, of Everyday Maven.  She had chosen Mark Bittman’s recipe for Summer Rolls in Peanut Sauce.  Check out Alyssa’s recipe for the tofu version, and other Food Matters Project participants recipes.  This was a fabulous choice since it involved no cooking- which is perfect in mid-August.

I’m sure you’ve all had these garden rolls at many Asian restaurants, and you’ll find that they are very easy to make.  I love the fresh ingredients, and wanted to replicate the refreshing and light taste.

Asian Vegetable Rolls with Peanut Sauce
Adapted from: The Food Matters Cookbook (page 96), A Chow Life, & A Cozy Kitchen
Servings: 9 + a little extra peanut sauce

Peanut Sauce:
3 tbsp creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup roasted nuts
5 garlic cloves
1 inch piece of fresh ginger, grated
1 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
1/4 cup water
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper
pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)

Asian Rolls:
rice paper sheets
2 carrots, peeled & julienned
1 cucumber, julienned
1 red pepper, julienned
1 jalapeño, julienned (optional)
20 sprigs of cilantro
2-3 leaves of mint

Add all of the ingredients for the peanut sauce into a food processor.  Process the ingredients until the sauce is smooth.  Pour into a bowl, it can be refrigerated for a couple of days.

To assemble the Asian Rolls fill a shallow, wide bowl with warm water.  Gently submerge each rice paper under water, keep it there for about 10 seconds- until the paper is soft.  Transfer the rice paper onto a slightly damp towel.  Working quickly, place the ingredients on the edge of the wrapper (a few julienned carrots, cucumbers and red pepper, a piece of jalapeño, 2 springs of cilantro, small piece of mint).  Fold the side in front of you over (away from you), turn in the sides, and then keep rolling away from you.  Repeat until you have used all of your ingredients.

Food Matters Project # 17: Vegetable Burritos

Happy Memorial Day!  I hope everyone had a wonderful long weekend, filled with lots of BBQ’s, sun and friends!  It’s also a Food Matter Project day, which means a new recipe inspired by Mark Bittman.

This week Jacqui, from Good Things Grow, chose the recipe from The Food Matters Cookbook.  Jacqui chose the Beans ‘n Greens Burritos, which is a perfect recipe to have endless varieties.  I can’t wait to see what others had made, check out the links under the comments here!

As I was doing our meal plan for the week, and included this recipe, I had a huge craving for eggplant.  So I went with the idea, and combined eggplant with some Mexican flavors.  We always have some kind of beans in our fridge or pantry, so this makes a quick and easy meal.  When I mentioned to Sam what we’ll be having for dinner, he wasn’t too sure about the eggplant in a burrito.  But after the first bite, he was sold!


Colorful Vegetable & Bean Burritos
Fifth Floor Kitchen Original

We do like spicy food, so there are red pepper flakes and jalapeños in this recipe, but feel free to omit them if you’re not in love with super spicy food.  You can also decrease the amount of chili powder (to a 1/4 or 1/8 tsp).  This burrito can  have rice mixed in, or served with salsa.  We used Cabot’s Hot Habañero Cheddar Cheese, but feel free to use regular cheddar.

1 eggplant, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
1 medium onion, chopped
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup frozen corn, defrosted
2 peppers, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 jalapeños, chopped (optional)
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin
black beans (cooked or canned)
1 cup chopped cilantro
1 cup cheddar cheese, grated

Preheat oven at 400ºF.  Spread eggplant pieces onto a baking pan, drizzle with 2 tbsp of olive oil.  Then sprinkle with 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, and red pepper flakes.  Using your hands, mix the ingredients together so each eggplant piece is covered with olive oil and the spices  Once the oven is preheated, roast for 30 minutes.

In a saucepan, heat up 1 tbsp olive oil.  Then add in the onion, sauté until it is translucent, about 5 minutes on medium heat.  Add in the garlic, and cook for another 2-3 minutes.  Then add in the corn, pepper and jalapeños.  Add in the chili powder, cumin, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper.  Stir well while cooking for about 5 minutes.

Once everything has cooled, mix together the eggplant, vegetable mix, black beans and cilantro in a large bowl.  Add the mixture into a tortilla wrap, sprinkle with cheese, and then fold together and serve.

Lobster Mac ‘n Cheese

We made this delicious chocolate dessert for Valentine’s Day, so we couldn’t just have a boring entree for dinner, right?

So we decided to make some macaroni and cheese, but spiced it up a bit.  Something different, something special.

Last Sunday we had wandered the aisles of Whole Foods when Sam had a great idea- what about lobster?  Yum.  And then right before we started cooking, we found a package of bacon that we hadn’t used up.  Double-yum!

Rather than going out to eat on Valentine’s Day- which can definitely get overcrowded, we opted for a nice dinner at home.  It was very indulgent, but I enjoyed every bite of it!  (of course rocking out 5 miles that morning also helped).  The next time you’d like to have some comfort food, but with a delicious spin- try this!  (feel free to substitute the lobster for shrimp, it’ll be just as delicious)

Smokey Lobster Mac ‘n Cheese with Bacon and Jalapeños

4 lobster tails, cut into chunks
1 lb pipe rigate pasta (or something similar)
6 oz sharp cheddar, shredded
6 oz smoked mozzarella, shredded (or any smoked cheese)
1/2 lb smoked bacon
2 jalapeños, diced (optional)
1/4 stick unsalted butter
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper
crushed red pepper (optional)

In a large pot, add the pasta to liberally salted, boiling water.

In a skillet, cook the bacon on medium high heat until done, then remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.  Add the lobster and jalapeños to the bacon fat, and cook on medium high for about 4-5 minutes, then remove with a slotted spoon.

Drain the pasta when al dente, then return to the pot you cooked it in.  Add the lobster, bacon, jalapenos, cheese and butter to the pot and mix thoroughly until the cheese and butter are fully melted.  Add salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste.  That’s it!