March 7, 2014 § Leave a comment
Passion Fruit Mousse (Mousse de Maracujá)
For me this is the taste of my mom’s kitchen growing up in Brazil
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk (homemade recipe bellow)
4 ounces of whipping cream
1/2 cup of passion fruit pulp (about 1/2 pound of fruit)
1) Cut the passion fruit in half and scoop out the pulp into a measuring cup to obtain 1 cup of pulp.
(Save a few tablespoons of seeds to decorate the mousse)
2) Add the pulp to the blender and pulse a few times to release the juice from the seeds
3) Strain the juice, discard the seeds. (The juice concentrate can be frozen, specially when you find good fruit and/or good deals.)
4) In the blender, add passion fruit juice, whipping cream and condensed milk. Blend for 2 minutes.
Pour the mixture into a large glass bowl or individual containers. Refrigerate for 4 hours.
For the sweetened condensed milk
adapted from kitchenstewardship.com
1 1/2 c. whole milk
1 Tbs. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
Mix sugar and milk together in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. I used my smaller burner, stirring often to melt sugar and bring to a low simmer. I kept it cooking, uncovered, on low heat for 45 minutes checking on it every 15 minutes.
Stir in butter and vanilla and cook until it thickens (happens very fast)
It yield a bit over 1/2 cup of very thick sauce. The goal is to reduce the milk, simmer down to about half and still have a dense liquid.
March 5, 2014 § 2 Comments
“Instant” Noodle Soup Jars
On my quest to have some handy and portable snacks for the kids, I wanted to do a remake of “ramen noodle bowls” (minus the plastic, chemicals, and expenses (there are some all natural and organic bowls available in the market)
I adapted our recipe from Super Healthy Kids and some tips from my friend Kian who suggested I added seaweed and berries, which I was not sure the kids would go for, but they did! My kids love noodles and broth. Maybe they like their special bowls and chopsticks, but I just eat from the jar. I have also tried bean thread noodles and Chinese rice noodles.
So here what goes into each jar:
1 ounce of noodles (your choice — we love soba (buckwheat) and if we are home, we would cook and rinse well)
1/2 cube of vegetable bouillon with sea salt (without hydrogenated oils, msg, coloring)
1/2 tablespoon of nutritional yeast
1 tsp dried seaweed (cut small)
5 goji berries
1/8 teaspoon old bay spice (I was going for extra celery flavor and a bit of heat)
2 tablespoons of dried vegetables ( I mixed a variety pack with dried chives and dried parley in a bowl to make it easy to scoop out into the jars)
When ready for soup, add 1 1/2 cups of boiling water, stir well, cover and wait 5-7 minutes, which works well with thin soba noodles.
It is recommended to rinse soba noodles in cold water. You can do this extra step if you are home, but I just add hot water and really enjoyed the flavors.
March 3, 2014 § 3 Comments
Happy Pancake Day or Fat Tuesday. In Brazil and many other countries, people are getting ready for 40 days of lent as they are almost done with Carnaval festivities.
When I lived in France, I looked forward to a day of eating pancakes – some say tradition was to use all the eggs and butter in the house before lent season. Today’s post, recipe and photos comes from the Hooper family. Thank you Mary, Jillian and Phillip for sharing this great recipe. This is a delicious healthy recipe that can go into lent season without the guilt!
Korean Vegetable Pancakes (Panjun)
These Korean inspired pancakes are filled with shredded, local, colorful, seasonal vegetables, pan fried and
served with a garlicky semi sweet sesame soy dipping sauce.
We have learned some basics of Korean cooking from Camp MuJiGae, a Korean culture camp in Albany,
NY which, as Korean adoptees, we have been fortunate enough to attend since we were toddlers.
Today we are sharing this family recipe we adopted with participants of the Center for Disability Services
where we volunteer as a part of the Youth Volunteer program.
Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, one of the most adaptable, simplest, and good for all age groups
Korean recipe is Panjun, Korean pancakes.
Here is how we like this Korean comfort food:
2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 ½ tsp sea salt
1 ½ cups water
4 cups of shredded or julienne style vegetables. (use what you like)
We used local grown vegetables purchased from the Honest Weight Food Co-Op- yellow zucchini, green
zucchini, carrots, shallots, scallions, and new potatoes.
We used a food processor to shred the vegetables.
½ – ¾ cups low sodium soy sauce
½ cup water
2 tbs rice vinegar
2 tbs honey
2 tbs sesame oil
2 cloves minced garlic
2 tbs sesame seeds
¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
¼ cup green onions/scallions
Heat a skillet and add cooking oil or spray to coat the pan. Ladle batter into the pan and fry 4-5 minutes per
side until golden brown and crispy on both sides.
Serve warm with dipping sauce.
Makes 4 large or 8 small pancakes.
February 18, 2014 § Leave a comment
During a recent visit at Soul Fire Farm with Leah Penniman and Jonah Vitale-Wolff, we talked about their Black and Latino Farmers Immersion 2014 this summer and ate a delicious wholesome meal. I was so inspired and if that was not enough, I watched Leah dance around her kitchen and add a bit of this and a bit of that to her food processor as she made falafel. We talked about acarajé and other delicious soaking legume recipes. For tonight, I adapted her recipe. The baked falafels were delicious. I served with a salad and tahini sauce. I do not like frying, and was not a bit disappointed with this baked version!
2 cups DRY chickpeas, soaked overnight, do not cook
1 onion, chopped
1/2 to 1 cup fresh parsley
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon salt
1 dash pepper
1 pinch cayenne pepper
2-3 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
bit of oil on the baking sheet
Tahini Sauce: 1/4 cup tahini (sesame paste)
1. Soak the chickpeas overnight. DO NOT COOK. (This is so important. Authentic falafel has no flour to bind because the soaked chickpeas bind themselves). In the morning, rinse and drain chickpeas.
2. in a food processor or blender, blend the chickpeas adding the olive oil and lemon juice (but slowly not to be too wet) until you get a nice puree.
3. add the remaining ingredients and continue blending.
4. add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
5. scoop 3.5 inch balls and then flatten them a bit but still thick patties. (I double her size size here)
6. put the falafel on the prepared pan and drizzle some olive oil over them. Bake on a 375F oven until golden all over, 10 to 15 minutes on each side.
If you would like to fry them, she says: heat 1 inch of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Fry patties in hot oil until brown on both sides.
For the Tahini Sauce: Whisk 1/4 cup tahini, 2 tablespoons warm water and salt to taste until smooth. To serve, drizzled the sauce over falafel.
January 29, 2014 § 1 Comment
Last night I taught another 7 meals for $40 at the Honest Weight Food Co-op and use the same recipes from a couple of weeks ago. We had a great turn out and wonderful questions. Thank you everyone who braved the bitter cold and joined the class.
I adapted this Japanese style hamburgers to make a beef and sprouts Japanese inspired patties
Today I made more changes and my version made 7 medium patties
8 oz. ground beef from Tarbox Farm
2 large handfuls of lentil sprouts
1 cup of oats
I made my “tempero” (seasoning) in the blender. Add all ingredients bellow to the blender cup with olive oil to make a paste
1/2 medium onion
2 cloves of garlic
1/2 cup parsley
1/2 cup scallions
3/4 tsp. salt , 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper or to taste
High Heat Oil for cooking
Combine the meat, sprout, oats and eggs with the blender seasoning using your hands until it comes together as a patty. Add more oats if too wet.
Divide into 7-8 portions. Form into patties. The recipe said to “Indent the middle with your thumb – this makes sure the middle gets cooked evenly.”
Cook the patties on medium-high heat until brown on both sides. Turn heat to low, cover and steam-cook the patties for about 10 minutes.
January 17, 2014 § 2 Comments
7×4 for $40 = simple wholesome food.
I am not very good at math and I do walk around with a calculator to do the most simple of calculations.
But this math I like. I like measuring cups of grains and paying less than a dollar for them!
And that’s how I start shopping at the Honest Weight Food Co-op for the class I taught at the Arts Center of the Capital Region this week. We set a challenge for the class to show students how to prepare seven meals for a family of 4 for $40, and using meat.
I started by getting the local meat at Tarbox Farm on Route 7, $5 per pound, which we used to make 2 meals. Next step I got the grains and legumes, eggs and cheese. I finished by getting veggies and spices with all the money I had left and asked if the store had some cull items. I scored some green onions, a handful of basil leaves and some marjoram and two lemons that were all I needed to make a delicious “Quibe” happen.
I have taught a similar class before so this is what we did:
The plan, also my shopping list
Monday: Rice and Beans: Oven Brown Rice, Pressure cooked Red Beans and turmeric cabbage
Tuesday: Stir fry Tuesday: sprouted lentils (tutorial), garlic, onion, ginger, carrot over leftover rice
Wednesday: Pick a new grain! Stovetop Buckwheat, Japonese inspired beef and sprout burgers
Thursday: Soup: Tagine
Friday: Eggs: Eggs in Purgatory eggs over millet
Saturday: Baked dish: Kibe (quibe)
Sunday: Breakfast for Dinner: Oat Banana Blender Pancakes with cinnamon
Monday: Oven Brown Rice, Red Beans and turmeric Cabbage (or Salpicão–see recipe in the end)
For the rice: Mix 2 cups of brown rice, 1 cup of lentils, 2 tsp salt, 2 tsp thyme, one splash of oil and bake 375F on an oven safe dish with a lead for 55 minutes. It makes about 10 cups
For the beans: Wash the beans, removing any stones or broken beans and drain. In a pressure cooker heat the water and place the washed beans and the bay leaves. and Close the pan and cook the beans for 20 minutes. (Follow instructions about attaching the lid, reducing steam pressure, and opening the pot when cooking is completed). As the pressure is removed, saute the chopped onion and garlic in oil, almost golden. Pour cooked beans and cook smashing a bit to thicken the sauce. If necessary, add more boiling water.If you want the refried beans, do not add water right way, add beans to fat and keep smashing them and stirring. You can use a wooden spoon or other mashing utensil, a little bit at a time while they fry in the hot pan. Add a couple of tablespoons of water water in the end if desired.
Tuesday: Stir Fry with Sprouted Lentils over leftover rice
Stir fry: 1/4 onion, 1/2 cup lentil sprouts, 1 small head broccoli, 2 carrots, sliced, 1 cup cabbage julienne, salt, pepper. Add ginger, garlic, and soy sauce to taste in the end. For the sprouts, see the tutorial here.
Wednesday: Buckwheat with beef and sprout Japanese inspired patties
To prepare buckwheat keep ratio 2 cups water to 1 cup of grain. Bring liquid to a rolling boil. Turn water off, add grain, stir, cover the pot and let it sit for 15-20 minutes. Open the pot and buckwheat is ready and not mushy.
For the Japonese inspired patties, mix 1/2 pound of ground beef with lentil srpount, chopped onions,
Recipe: Japanese style hamburger (Hambaagu or hambaagaa) adapted from http://www.justhungry.com/hambaagu-or-hambaagaa-japanese-hamburgers
my version made 7 medium hamburgers
8 oz. ground beef
2 large handfuls of lentil sprouts
1/2 medium onion
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1 cup oats
Oil for cooking
Chop the onion very finely. Sauté the onion in a little oil until translucent. Let cool.
Combine the meat, cooled cooked onions, egg, salt, ground pepper. Combine using your hands until it comes together as a patty. Add more oats if too wet.
Divide into 7-8 portions. Form into patties. The recipe said to “Indent the middle with your thumb – this makes sure the middle gets cooked evenly.” First time doing that.
Cook the patties on high heat until brown on both sides. Turn heat to low, cover and steam-cook the patties for about 10 minutes “until the middle bounces back if you press down on it. Take out and keep warm.”
We did not do this for the class but here the recipe for the sauce:1/2 cup dry red wine, 1/3 cup ketchup, 1/3 cup Japanese tonkatsu sauce such as Bulldog brand
Pour out any excess oil from the pan and turn the heat up to high again. Add the red wine and deglaze the pan with it (scrape off the brown bits and blend). Add the ketchup and the Bulldog sauce and blend. Pour over the hamburgers.
I use spices to create delicious meals on a budget! I am never tired of eating bean and vegetables. One can get a whole new dish by cutting vegetables in different shapes and sizes and adding new spice combos. If you are not sure you will like it, start by using small amounts of each spice. For this dish you may have heard you can add a mix called Ras el Hanout, which sometimes contains dozens of spices. Here my take this hearty stew.
Serve Tagine alone or over couscous, with yogurt.
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 cup of tomatoes
2 carrots, chopped
2 cups of winter squash, if available
4 medium potatoes, I like to keep them whole for this dish, but you could cut them
2 cups cooked chickpeas
3 cloves garlic
10 prunes, cut in half (or 1/2 cup raisins)
2 teaspoon of each: turmeric, cumin, paprika (I like smoked)
1/2 stick of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of ground coriander
1 teaspoon of ground allspice
1 tablespoon of fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves
salt and hot chillies to taste
Water or broth to cover the vegetables about 2 cups depending on the pot you use.
I added celery because I had some, but you can omit or try other root vegetables as well.
This is a great recipe for the crockpot.
Soak your chickpeas overnight. In the morning, rinse them, add to the crockpot with all other ingredients. Add broth or water to cover the ingredients and let it cook on low for 8 hours.
I also cook my chickpeas on the pressure cooker for 15 minutes.
I do not have a tagine pot, so I use a dutch oven. But any pot with a lid will work. Add oil to the pot and sautee the onion. I add all the veggies and cook them for about 5 minutes until soft but firm, stirring often. Then add the cooked chickpeas, spices, water, cover and simmer until vegetables are cooked 25-30 minutes. The house always smells incredible and the leftovers are even better!
Friday: Eggs in Purgatory “Ovos no Purgatório”
or the eggs, heat up some oil, onions and garlic. Add tomato sauce to the pan. Next lower the eggs in enough sauce to leave the egg yolks uncovered. Cook covered for 3 minutes.
Saturday: Kibe, Quibe, (kibbeh)
1/2 lb good-quality, lean ground-beef or lamb
1 cup bulgur wheat, dry (trigo para quibe), soaked in cold water
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 cup greeen onions, chopped
1/2 cup mint, finely chopped, we had marjoram from cull
1/2 cup basil, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
sat and pepper to taste
extra-virgin olive oil
stuffing: cheese, tomatoes
Pour the bulgur wheat into a large bowl, with water to cover by 1 inch and let stand at room temperature until all the water is absorbed. Drain excess water. Use for the Kibe or the same process to make taboulleh salad, by omitting the meat, adding lemon juice and eating raw, not baked.
In a blender or food processor or using pestle and mortar combine the chopped onion, the garlic, the mint and basil, olive oil and a bit of lemon juice if necessary to make a paste. Add this green sauce to the bulgur and you can let marinate in the fridge overnight to make in advance. Add the meat, salt and pepper to taste and mix using your hands.
Oil an oven safe glass or ceramic dish, add half of the bulgur mixture pressing oil, drizzle with olive oil, add cheese, caramelized onion, tomatoes slices, etc then add the rest of the mixture, pressing and smoothing it out. “Using a sharp knife, cut the meat into attractive serving shapes (traditionally baked kibbeh is cut into diamond shapes by making diagonal cuts). Drizzle the top surface generously with additional olive oil.”
Bake for a 350 oven for 35-40 minutes. Serve immediately, with lemon wedges and if you wish, tahini or tzatziki sauce.
Add to the blender cup: 2 cup old fashioned oats 4 tsp baking powder 1/4 tsp salt 1 cup milk or yogurt 1 banana blend add 2 egg and re-blend Pour the batter onto the griddle or cast iron pan on medium heat. Brown on both sides and serve hot.
To use up extra ingredients
Salpicão, Brazilian Salad
2 cups cooked chicken breast, cooked with onion, garlic, cumin, coriander, cooled and shredded (ham can be used as well) also meats can be omitted.
1 cup of grated carrots
1 cup raw or cooked corn kernels, cooled
1 cup sprouted lentil, or cooked and cooled (see how-to bellow)
2 cups cabbage, finally chopped
2 small green apples shredded (optional)
1 bunch of fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 bunch of green onions, finely chopped
1/2 cup onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream crispy fried potatoes to serve (shortcut: package of shoestring potato chips) salt and pepper to taste, paprika and boiled eggs to decorate
Bonus: free cull
My goal is to encourage people to cook and eat nutrition foods, in season. I am not a nutritionist, but I am always looking for information that helps me make the right decisions for my family and my community when I am cooking for and with others.
We can find lots of resources online. Nutrition through the seasons is a nice way to keep our diets varied while eating the freshest produce. Check out this list:
But how to start? Maybe a nutrition plan calculator can help understanding how our plate should look.
It gave me a handy pdf that I can print and along with my season list, I can start shopping. One can adjust portions and add new vegetable combinations.
Hope you will enjoy.
January 1, 2014 § Leave a comment
We finished 2013 with Oxtail and Beans (see recipe bellow) — delicious Romano beans we grew this year . We ate them from August to November and dried and stored about 14 pounds! It was an amazing gardening experience for our family. I cooked and shared a lot of beans on events, cooking classes, at church with friends and family. Not sure if people will still accept invitations to eat at my house for a while. Maybe they do not have the heart to tell me that they are hoping I would take on a different challenge. But the truth is that I am very happy to share food that I know is wholesome and it can taste amazing.
So in the New Year, I will continue cooking legumes and sharing with you what I am learning along the way. I did not even blogged about all the beans I cooked the past year, but I will keep adding recipes to the list.
Oxtail and Beans (Rabada e Feijão)
Oxtail, about 6 pieces
juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon of Annatto powder (Urucum as I know growing up in Brazil)
1 medium onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 bay leaves
2 cups of cooked beans (I used Romano cooked 20 minutes on pressure cooker)
salt and black pepper to taste
Course One: Seven dinners for four for $40 at the Arts Center of the Capital Region 265 River Street, Troy, NY
Course Two: Cooking on a Budget at Honest Weight Food Co-op, 100 Watervliet Ave, Albany, NY