Tag Archives: Vegetarian Times

Eggplant & Broccolini Pasta Salad

I’m sure many of you having cravings for different foods.  About this time of the year, tomatoes tend to be in the top.  Definitely love fresh tomatoes (check out the latest tomato recipe), but right now I have also been craving eggplant.  And specifically- roasted eggplant- something about the crunchy outside, and soft inside.  Yum!

When I spotted this recipe in June’s Vegetarian Times, I had to make it.  It’s a great recipe that tastes delicious the day you make it, but this is a great cold pasta salad for some leftovers.  Most pasta salads do not have eggplant, so this is definitely a tasty difference.  It’s a little fancier than you regular pasta or pasta salad, but just as easy to make!  Great for those busy summer days!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Eggplant & Broccolini Pasta Salad
Inspired by: Vegetarian Times (June 2012)

1 lb pasta
2 medium eggplants, washed
2 1/2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
8 oz broccolini, chopped
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup chopped tomatoes
1 onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded

Heat up a large pot with water, once it’s boiling add in the pasta.  Cook the past according to the directions on the package.

Preheat the oven to 425ºF.  Cut the eggplant into 1-inch pieces and spread it all onto a cookie sheet.  Add 1 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper and 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes.  Then using your hands, mix the seasoning with the eggplant.  Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the eggplant is slightly browned.

Once the eggplant is done baking, spread the broccolini on a cookie sheet (can be the same one).  Sprinkle it with 1/2 tbsp olive oil, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper and 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes.  Once again, using your hands (be careful if the cookie sheet is still hot) mix the ingredients together.  Bake the broccolini for 15 minutes at 425ºF.

When all of the ingredients are cooked and baked, toss them into a large bowl.  Then add in the grape tomatoes, regular tomatoes, onion, garlic cloves and 1 tbsp olive oil.  Stir all of the ingredients well.  Serve sprinkled with Parmesan cheese.

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Food Matters Project #20: Walnut Pâté Sandwich with Arugula & Pears

With the heat index rising, this weeks Food Matters Project came at the right time.  The chosen dish was easy, fast and did not require turning on the oven!

This weeks Food Matters Project host is Aura, of Dinner with Aura.  From Mark Bittman’s Food Matter Cookbook, she chose Updated Tea Sandwiches.  Check out what everyone else made in their kitchens!  Mark Bittman’s original recipes can be found on page 52 in his cookbook.

Walnut Pâté Sandwich with Arugula & Pears
Adapted from: Vegetarian Times

For these sandwiches I used ciabatta bread, but any type of bread will be great.  In addition, the toppings can be changed to whatever you’d like.  Alternatives include: spinach, tomatoes, roasted red bell peppers, cheese, etc.

bread (ciabatta, whole wheat, foccacia, peasant bread, etc)

Pâté:
1 cup walnuts
1 15oz can cannellini beans, rinsed & drained
juice of 1 lemon
8 garlic cloves
1 tbsp olive oil
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper
pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)

Toppings:
arugula
pear slices
cucumber slices

Add all of the pâté ingredients in a food processor.  Purée until smooth.

To make sandwiches, spread the pâté onto the bread, top with arugula, pear slices and cucumber slices.

Rice Noodles with Eggplant and Mango

How come some weekends are mellow, where you have nothing planned?  That was more or less last weekend- we sat on the roof and enjoyed fresh bruschetta and fresh bread.  This weekend is crazy busy: birthdays, going away parties, celebrations, races and dinners with friends!

When those hectic (but fun) weekends creep up, it’s great to have some food prepared and ready for you in the fridge.  This way, if you need something to eat or snack on, you don’t need to worry about the preparation.

 

This noodle dish I is perfect for those kids of hectic weekends or weekdays.  It can be prepared ahead, and it’s best served cold (which makes it even better for this warmer weather)!

Rice Noodles with Eggplant & Mango
Adapted from: Vegetarian Times (April/May 2012)

Although I had found this recipe originally in Vegetarian Times, it’s actually an excerpt from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi.  I couldn’t get my hands on soba noodles, so we made it with rice noodles- equally delicious, and probably a little lighter.  This had fantastic flavors, and looked beautiful on a plate, perfect for a dinner party! 

1 1/2 large eggplants, cut into 1-inch cubes
1-2 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
8 oz rice noodles
1 tbsp sesame oil
6 garlic cloves, minced
4 red chili peppers, chopped
1 inch cube ginger, grated
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp rice vinegar
2 tsp soy sauce
1 ripe mango, peeled, cut into thick strips
1 cup chopped cilantro
3/4 cup chopped basil

Preheat the oven to 400ºF.  Spread the eggplant cubes onto a cookie sheet.  Drizzle with olive oil, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.  Using your hands, spread the olive oil and spices onto all eggplant pieces.  Roast eggplant at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.  With salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.  Once baked, allow to cool and set aside in a large bowl.

Cook the rice noodles according to package.  Once cooked, drain and rinse under cold water.  Drain, and set aside in the large bowl with the eggplant.

In a saucepan, heat the sesame oil.  Then add garlic, red chili peppers, ginger, sugar, rice vinegar and soy sauce.

In a saucepan heat sesame oil.  Then add: garlic, red chili peppers, ginger, sugar, rice vinegary, soy sauce.  Cook on low until the mixture thickens.  Add into the large bowl with the noodles and eggplant.

Lastly, add in the mango, cilantro and bail.  Toss all ingredients together.  Allow to chill in the fridge before serving.

Food Matters Project #2: Seasoned Popcorn

This is the 2nd week of The Food Matters Project, and the recipe is seasoned popcorn.  Check out everyone’s recipes here (under the comments are links to the various takes).

Kate has chosen this weeks recipe Seasoned Popcorn.

Also, today is the last day to qualify to win Mark Bittman’s The Food Matters Cookbook.  Leave a comment on why food matters to you or a favorite healthy meal- here.  The giveaway ends tonight!

Popcorn always makes me think of movie theaters and new movies.  There is the packaged popcorn, but I really have never bought it, mainly because I could never finish a bag in one sitting!  So my popcorn consumption has always been at the movies- but as prices are getting higher and higher, and Reese’s Pieces being so much tastier (and cheaper)- I rarely eat any.

I will admit, I don’t think I have ever made popcorn from scratch at home on my own.  So when this project challenge was added, I was excited to try something new.  Sam was the expert on this one and took charge immediately.

Since we had some popcorn, why not watch a movie, right?  We enjoyed The King’s Speech last night (I know, a bit behind on our movies)- if you haven’t seen it yet, definitely add this one to your list.

When it comes to popcorn, our tastes are a bit different.  So we decided to make our popcorn two ways- each to our own liking!

There are a million flavors of popcorn- the choices are infinite!  Needs some more ideas?  Mark Bittman suggests: garlic popcorn, fresh herb, Old Bay seasoning, toasted sesame seeds, brown sugar, or ground nuts and coconut.

In the March issue of Vegetarian Times, there was a list of favorite popcorn flavors from the readers, some of them were:

* butter, curry and paprika
* sugar, salt, turmeric and cayenne
* maple syrup and cinnamon
* truffle oil and Parmesan cheese (I want to try this next time!)
* sea salt, cracked pepper with chocolate chips

Seasoned Popcorn
Adapted from: The Food Matters Cookbook (pg. 38)

2 tbsp canola oil
1/4 cup popping corn

Pour the canola oil in a deep pot.  Turn on the heat to medium heat, and allow the oil to heat up a bit (1 minute).  Then add the corn kernels, cover the pot.

When the kernels stop popping (no more than 5 minutes), remove the lid and pour out the popcorn on a paper towel lined plate.

Then pour your popcorn into a container with a lid or a brown paper lunch bag.  Add in your seasonings, close the container or bag, and shake the popcorn with the seasoning.  The trick is to have a bit of seasoning on each popcorn kernel.

Pour it into a bowl, turn on a movie and enjoy!

Spicy Popcorn Seasoning
1 tsp cayenne
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp chili powder

Cheesy and Salty Popcorn Seasoning
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 tsp salt

Samosa Casserole

So I know I’ve been a little absent from the blog world, but there is a reason for it.  We’re on vacation!  Yes, remember this post?  Since our travels began, we’ve been enjoying some great food, and yes, we’ll be sure to write about it here the moment we get back!

Until then, here’s a recipe I had made for my Book Club about a week prior to our trip.  Our last book was filled with short stories about Indian families living in the US- so naturally, I had to make some Indian dishes!  Searching around, I had stumbled upon this one, and thought it’d be a hit (and it was!).

The great thing about this dish was that I prepared it the night before.  I had made all of the filling, and then stored it overnight, covered in the fridge.  Then next day, I had made the crust and baked it.

Samosa Casserole
Adapted from: Vegetarian Times (Jan 2010)
6-8 servings

1 cup of flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp vegetable oil
10 tbsp cold water
1 1/2 lb Russet potatoes, quartered
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 medium carrots, diced
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp mustard seeds
1 cup peas, frozen
1 cup of water
1 vegetable bouillon
1 tbsp curry powder
1/2 tbsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp garam masala
1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
2 tbsp honey
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Knead together flour, salt and vegetable oil.  Once it starts clumping, add cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time.  Continue kneading until you can form a ball.  Cover with a towel and set aside.

Cook potatoes in boiling water until they are tender, then drain them.  Next, add them to a bowl and mash them- try leaving some chunks for texture.

In a saucepan, heat olive oil.  Then add the onions, carrots and garlic; sauté for about 5 minutes.  While the heat is still on, slide the vegetable mixture to one side of the pan.  In the empty space add mustard seeds.  Toast them for about 30 seconds, then mix them into the vegetable mixture.  Stir in peas, water and a vegetable bouillon.  Finally, add the curry powder, ground ginger, ground cumin, garam masala and red pepper flakes.  Stir well, mixing in all of the spices.

Once it is all incorporated, add the vegetable mixture into the bowl with mashed potatoes.  Also, add honey, salt and pepper.  Make sure it’s well incorporated.  Spread the filling into about a 9-inch pan (any shape).

Preheat the over to 350ºF.

Roll out the dough on a floured surface.  If the pan is 9-inch, then the dough should be around 11-inches.  Cover the filling with the dough, pressing down to eliminate all of the air pockets.  Trim off the excess dough.  In the center, cut in an X, to let the steam out.

Bake the casserole for about 60-70 minutes, until the crust is golden brown.  Let it stand a couple of minutes before serving.