I made this soup for a two-family dinner and all the kids gobbled it up. It cooks up with minimal prep — the only thing that take time is peeling the beets. This recipe is from Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food magazine — my go-to source for mid-week cooking. It too about 20 minutes to peel the root veggies, and then you can make a salad while the veggies roast.
Roasted Beet and Potato Borscht
2 lbs red beets
1 lb russet potatoes
salt and pepper
5 c veggie broth (can do some broth and some water)
red wine vinegar
fresh parsley (opt)
green onions (opt)
Pre-heat oven to 400. Peel beets and dice medium. Peel 1 lb russet potatoes and dice medium. Add these to a roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet. Coarsely chop 2 shallots and add to pan along with 3-5 springs of fresh thyme. Drizzel with 2T olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss lightly to coat. Arrange this mix in a single layer and roast until beets and potatoes are cooked through. (About 45min)
Discard thyme. Add vegetable to a soup pot along with 5 cups vegetable broth. Bring to simmer over medium-high. Use a potato masher to mash some of the veggies until the soup is think and chunky. Stir in 1 T red-wine vinegar and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
To serve, top with sour cream, chopped fresh parsley, and thinly sliced green onions if desired.
Filed under: Main Dish, Medium Fix, Salads, Uncategorized | Tags: big salads, Salads, sweet potatoes
This recipe for Red-Leaf Salad with Roasted Sweet Potatoes is from my favorite cooking magazine, Everyday Foodwith Martha Stewart. My mom saved all my copies over the past year, and I had a blast tearing out the new dishes to try out. I made this one while at Pura Vida and it was a big hit. I’m allergic to walnuts, so I substituted pine nuts. And couldn’t get red leaf so I had to use Romaine as you’ll see in the photos.
Red-Leaf Salad with Roasted Sweet Potatoes
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-in chunks
1 med red onon, quartered
2 T olive oil
coarse salt and ground black pepper
1 package (10 oz) frozen cut green beans, thawed
1/3 c walnuts
1 c plain low-fat yogurt
2 T white-wine vinegar
1 garlic clove, pressed
1 head red-leaf lettuce, torn into bite-sized pieces
Preheat oven to 450. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss sweet potatoes, onions, and oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast until sweet potatoes are tender, about 20min.
Add green beans and walnuts to sheet, toss. Roast until green beans are tender, about 5 min.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, vinegar, and garlic. Season dressing with salt and pepper. Top lettuce with roasted veggies, drizzle with dressing.
Filed under: Uncategorized
And green beans dress my plate.
Capers and oil,
Eggs from a boil,
This meal will be first rate.
This is the salad to save your Thursday night. By Thursday, the lettuce needs CPR, the fish was eaten days ago, and the curry paste is lying to you when it says it can make all the leftovers taste fresh again. What you need is something fresh, something jazzy, something that will convince your family to eat a few vegetables. This, my friend, is the salad for you. One of the reasons I like this salad is that there are some long steps in between. The eggs must boil, the potatoes must cook. This gives you ample opportunity to open a bottle of wine, relax, and enjoy cooking. The recipe says to use good quality canned Italian tuna. In my world, Bumblebee in oil is Italian. I’m sure Chicken of the Sea in oil would be Italian too.
(An aside – there are some luxuries in life that I don’t let myself try. I do this because I live in blissful ignorance of how inferior the cheaper stuff is. If I were to try real Italian tuna for $7 a can, I’m afraid I could never go back to $3 Bumblebee. Mozzarella cheese is the same for me, and so is vodka. Several years ago, I switched from canned black olives and jarred green olives with pimentos to the olive bar at the expensive grocery store. My life is better for it, but my wallet is not.)
This salad is incredibly easy to make as well. You don’t have to worry about judging the doneness of meat. There are no fine knife skills involved. What I’m trying to say is that if you make it through the first bottle of wine and onto the second, you will still have a fantastic dinner and avoid the emergency room. And that, my friends, is all you can ask for from a salad.
The recipe comes from Gourmet (July 2007) and makes about four servings in a little under an hour.
¼ c white wine vinegar
2 t dijon mustard
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ t sugar
⅓ c extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound green beans, trimmed and halved
1 pound small (1- to 2-inch) yellow-fleshed potatoes such as Yukon Gold
2 (6-ounce) cans tuna in olive oil, drained
12 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
½ c pitted Kalamata olives
3 T rinsed drained bottled capers
½ c finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
4 hard-boiled large eggs, quartered
Whisk together vinegar, mustard, garlic, sugar, ½ t salt, and ¼ t peper, then add oil in a slow stream, whisking until emulsified.
Cook beans in a pot of boiling salted water (2 T salt for 6 quarts water), uncovered, until tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Immediately transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. Drain beans and pat dry.
Add potatoes to boiling water and simmer, uncovered, until tender, about 20 minutes, then drain. Halve potatoes while still warm.
Gently flake tuna and toss with 1 tablespoon dressing. Toss potatoes and beans with tomatoes, olives, capers, parsley, and remaining dressing in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper and top with tuna and eggs.
Filed under: Uncategorized
What is *8 Things? Click!
1) open-face grilled cheese sandwhich with sliced bell peppers
2) oatmeal with a scoop of greek yogurt and almonds
3) cottage cheese with a spoonful of apricot jam and a sprinkle of ginger granola
4) hallah toast with marscapone cheese and honey
5) easy peasy tun melt (tuna on toast with a slice of cheese)
6) cottage cheese with a spoonful of flavored yogurt and sliced bananas
7) a mug of green tea and a plate of figs
8) whole wheat toast with nutella and sliced apples
What’s you favorite quick breakfast? Tell us in the comments below! Got time for a longer morning nosh? Find great recipes here.
Juice of 1/4 to 1/2 a lime
1 tsp of sugar or simple syrup.
Muddle limes and sugar, add ice, pour in rum and shake, shake, shake. Strain into a martini glass. Sometimes I add a few ice cubes if the day is warm.
Chronic Chronicling: The Inspiration for my Simple Syrup Teddy: I used to work with this beautiful, funny, energetic woman. One day I was with her watching a bike race in Vancouver on a rainy day – I thought it might be interesting. Bikes were skidding and wiping out all over the place and you don’t really see who wins – you have to wait for the news to spread through the crowd – it was uninteresting. She livened up the whole spectator situation when she pulled her Tequila Teddy out of her purse. That’s what she called her honey bear that she had refilled with tequila and I thought she was hilarious. Her boyfriend was a cyclist so she came prepared.
Filed under: Uncategorized
Posted by: Rachelle
Why yes, Lisa Loeb, we do!
My kids have fallen in love with the song stylings of Ms. Lisa Loeb — and frankly, what’s not to love? (So much better then the current Vanessa Hudgens crush also going on in download land over here.)
When making something simple like bruschetta, the important thing is to use good ingredients. You’ll need these to make Lazy Gourmet Bruschetta, but they are also good pantry basics to have on hand.
Fresh Garlic. Please, I beg you, abandon garlic powder. Buy whole garlic, or cheat a little and get a jar of the pre-chopped stuff. It’s usually in the produce section with the salad supplies. It makes food prep easier, and is nearly as nice as chopping it fresh.
Fresh Basil is essential for dishes like bruschetta, or to put on homemade pizza — or even to jazz up a pre-made deli pizza. You can grow in on your windowsill in a pot, or buy it fresh in small-to-large packages in the produce department.
Olive Oil can really range in price and quality. Get decent olive oil — not the most expensive, but not the cheapest either. It must be extra virgin. If you have the cheaper non-virgin stuff, use it in cooked foods where the flavor is not as prominent. For cold dishes use the good stuff.
Parmesan/Romano/Assagio. You are absolutely forbidden to use Parmesan ‘cheese’ in the green can. We are not eating in 1972 folks. Go buy a bag or carton of the pre-shredded stuff, or save some coin and get a triangular block and shred on a grater (fine or heavier depending on what you like) or shave it into thin slices with a sharp knife.
Filed under: Italian, Lazy Gourmet, Main Dish, quick fix, Rachelle Mee-Chapman, Uncategorized | Tags: basil, garlic, italian dishes, Lazy Gourmet, quick fix, rachelle, simple and flavorfull, tomatoes
When my sweet friend Jeff committed eating something other than Trader Joe’s salads, I got inspired to help him on his quest to learn how to cook. I started searching my recipe collection for things that were high on flavor, low on prep. Bruschetta was the first thing that came to mind.
Paul and I fell in love with this fresh tomato dish when we first went to Italy in 1996. Now it is a Summer staple, and we’ve managed to turn this antipasta (appetizer) in to a primo or secondo course (main dish).
The recipe is written for someone who is brand new to cooking, with how to’s and serving suggestions. There’s a also a post here with some thoughts choosing ingredients to get maximum flavor for minimum fuss. Have Yum!
serves 2-4 depending how you use it
4 firm but ripe tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely diced -or-
3 t jarred chopped garlic
8 nice sized basil leaves
extra virgin olive oil
optional (see serving suggestions)
parmesean or asagio cheese
cibatta or other crusty bread
Okay, now the basil. Don’t be scared! Pinch the leaves off the stems. It’s a little like plucking a daisy. (“She loves me. She loves me not.”) You only want the leaves. Wash the basil leaves and dry them in a salad spinner. If you dont’ have a spinner, pat them dry between two paper towels, or just shake them off over a sinke and call it done. Stack the leaves on top of each other on a cutting board. There now, isn’t that nice and orderly? Roll ‘em up into a little bundle, and slice lengthwise into thin shreds. Aren’t you the cooking pro? Into the bowl they go.
Pour some salt into you palm. Put a couple very generous pinch into the bowl. You can always adjust later. Bruschetta should be very garlicky and nicely salty, IMHO. Now pour in a glug of olive oil. You’re done!
What to do with Bruschetta
Well, you could just eat it right out of the bowl, it’s so tasty! But try this: Cut your loaf of bread in half lenghtwise. Put it on a baking sheet and drizzle it with olive oil. Sprinkle on a little salt. Put it in the oven about four inches from the top. This is called “putting it under the broiler.” Set the oven dial to ‘broil,’ medium if it has options for how low/med/high. This will toast up fast, so keep an eye on it for a few minutes. When it’s nice and toasty, take it out, and if you feel fancy rub it with a clove of garlic, and sprinkle it with some parmesean cheese. Back in the broiler for just long enough to melt the cheese. Take it out, pile on the bruschetta — viola! Dinner!
Here’s some more options: Make up some pasta according to the directions on the package. Don’t forget to salt the water and don’t over cook it. Drain in in a big colander and toss with bruschetta. Top with cheese. If you need some protein try tossing in pre-cooked chicken breasts from the deli, diced or shredded — or use my favorite fall-back, rotisserie chicken. (You can get additive-free, organic, hormone-free roasted chicken now at stores like Whole Foods and PCC.)
Filed under: Uncategorized
Hi! I’m Rachelle Mee-Chapman, alt-minster, mom and blogging enthusiast. I write all over the web, but my primary blog is Magpie Girl. I don’t mind be distracted by sparkly things over there, but more and more I’ve been wanting a seperate space to write about all things food-related. (I know, I know…I need another blog like a need a hole in my head, but what are you gonna do? The Muse, she is relentless.)
In my thirties I got hit by a chronic illness involving food sensitivities; gave up dieting for good; and made peace with my body. About that time I also moved from Seattle, Washington to Copenhagen, Denmark – where my immigrant life under the northern island skies led me to refine my thinking about food, cooking, and eating around the seasons.
On top of all that high school pal needed some help getting out of bachelor-food hell, so I started teaching him to cook on line. Willing to eat almost anything — junk food, standard fare, and culinary delights–Jeff described himself as my “food hero.” Thus, another blog was born.
Food Hero features delicious, not-too-hard recipes and curious things about food related topics. I hope you’ll stop by often. Thanks for reading!