Friday, April 24, 2015

Black Bean Burgers

Black Bean Burgers
Adapted from Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman

Two 14.5-ounce cans 50% less sodium black beans
1 cup finely-ground oats (3.8 ounces)*
1/4 cup finely chopped red onions (1.4 ounces)
2 stalks green onions, finely chopped (1 ounce)
1 large jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped (1.7 ounces)
1/4 cup chopped cilantro (0.4 ounce)
1 large egg, slightly beaten (about 1.8 to 1.9 ounces)
1 tablespoon chili powder (blend) or ground ancho or chipotle chili powder
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1-1/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon Mexican oregano, crushed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon hot sauce (optional)

*To make your own finely-ground oats, place rolled or quick-cooking oats in your food processor. Process until finely grind (flour).

Place beans in a colander to drain well, but do not rinse. Transfer beans to a very large mixing bowl. Using a potato masher, mash the beans until they are mostly mashed, but still have some whole beans visible. 

Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well until thoroughly combined. 

Shape into four patties, about 3/4-inch thickness, weighing approximately 7.5 ounces per patty. Place patties on waxed paper or parchment paper. Cover and refrigerate until ready to cook.

Heat a 12-inch cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat (7.0 on induction cook top). When pan is very hot, add 1-2 tablespoons coconut oil or olive oil to the pan (you can use 50% olive oil and 50% butter, if desire). Place bean patties in the skillet and cook the first side for 5 minutes. Turn each patty over and cook the second side for additional 5 minutes. If you like, you can add a slice of cheese during the last minute of cooking. (I like to turn off the heat and place the cheese slices on top, cover and let residual heat melt them enough for the corners of the cheese to drape over the edge.)

You can serve the patties as a burger on 100% whole-wheat buns with Vegenaise (or mayonnaise), Dijon mustard, Mexican Cabbage Slaw, Pickled Red Onions, pickled jalapeno peppers, avocado slices (or guacamole) or simply do traditional burger style with Vegenaise (or mayonnaise), ketchup, mustard, lettuce, onions, pickles and tomatoes,

Yield 4 patties

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Whole-Wheat Dark Chocolate Muffins

Whole-Wheat Dark Chocolate Muffins

These muffins were adapted from a Chocolate Buttermilk Bread recipe I found on Pinterest. Because I substituted the all-purpose flour for whole-wheat flour, the bread did not bake up well. The batter was quite thick and the very center of the bread was a bit raw after baking. The texture of the bread was quite dense, but it tasted delicious and very chocolaty. My second attempt, I made some modifications to the recipe. After 20 minutes of baking, the batter was starting to overflow out of the loaf pan. I immediately removed the pan from the oven and transfer the batter to a muffin pan. Not knowing what will be the outcome of this, I did end up with delicious and not-so-appealing-looking muffins. My third attempt, I decided to just bake the bread off as muffins. The muffins does not have a high dome which I was not able to achieve, but it is moist, chocolaty, and delicious. I like to warm these muffins in the microwave for 15 seconds so the chocolate chips are almost melting when you bite into it. Even if you don't, these muffins will still be delicious eaten at room temperature.

1-1/2 cups WHITE whole-wheat flour (7.1 ounces)
1 cup organic natural cane sugar (7.4 ounces)
3/4 cup Hershey's brand Special Dark Cocoa (2.5 ounces)
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (6.6 ounces)
1 large egg (about 1.8 to 1.9 ounces)
1-1/4 cup buttermilk (9 ounces)
1/2 cup Greek yogurt (4 ounces)
1/2 cup EXTRA LIGHT Olive Oil (3.4 ounces)
1 tablespoon Nescafe brand Clasico Dark Roast Instant Coffee
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Position twp oven racks to the upper third and lower third of the oven.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the whole-wheat flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt and stir well with a wire whisk until blended. Toss in the chocolate chips with a rubber spatula and make a well in the center. Set aside.

In a separate small mixing bowl, lightly beat the egg with a wire whisk. Add the buttermilk to the beaten egg and whisk together until blended. Add the olive oil to the egg mixture and whisk together until blended. Lastly, add the instant coffee and vanilla. Whisk together until blended.

Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture. Using a pastry fork or wire whisk, stir/fold in ingredients until all mixture are moistened. Switch to a rubber spatula to complete folding all ingredients until blended, but not to overmix. 

Divide batter into 15 muffin cups lined with paper liners or sprayed with nonstick baking spray. Bake for 30 minutes. Let muffins cool in the pan for about 5 minutes and turn them out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Keep muffins in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Warm muffins in the microwave for 15 seconds or let it sit out at room temperature.

Yield 15 muffins

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Spicy Corn and Chicken Chili

Spicy Corn and Chicken Chili

This recipe is adapted from Whole Foods Market. This recipe is already doubled so this recipe will make a very large quantity. This chili is different from the traditional meat chili with beans. It is made with ground chicken, but most of the time I like to use ground lean turkey. It has a lot of corn instead of beans which makes this chili so delicious in flavor and texture. The spices and chipotlle salsa gives this chili a nice smoky flavor and kick. This chili is very thick, hearty, spicy and comforting. The spiciness can be adjusted to your own taste by adding more or less canned chipotle pepper in adobo sauce. The corn adds a little sweetness to the chili and I love the chewy texture of the corn.

2 large onions, finely chopped (about 1:6.3 to 1:7.8 pounds)
5 cloves garlic, minced (0.8 ounce)
1/4 cup ground ancho chili powder (0.8 ounce)
4 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 to 2 canned chipotle chili in adobo sauce (0.5 to 1.0 ounce), finely minced 
OR 1 teaspoon ground chipotle powder
2 pounds ground chicken OR two 1.25-pound packages ground lean turkey
One 28-ounce can no-salt plum tomatoes, hand crushed
One 14-ounce can Swanson brand 33% less sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup cold water
One 16-ounce jar Marcela Valladolid brand Fire-Roasted Chipotle Salsa (Safeway)
One 16-ounce package frozen roasted yellow corn
One 16-ounce package frozen white corn

2-1/4 teaspoons salt
2/3 cup chopped cilantro (1.0 ounce)

Heat a large pot over high heat until hot. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and add the ground chicken/turkey. Cook, stirring and breaking up the meat, until browned. Transfer the chicken/turkey to a colander to drain and set aside.

Return same pot to the stove. Lower temperature to medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons olive oil to the pot. When hot, add the onions and garlic. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, until onions are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the chili powder, oregano, cumin, coriander, and chipotle chili. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.

Add the ground chicken/turkey and continue to cook, stirring constantly, for a few seconds. Add tomatoes, salsa, chicken broth, water, both kinds of corn and salt. Increase heat to high to bring chili to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer. Cover pot and continue to cook for about 25 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro. Serve with corn tortilla, fresh diced avocado, and cilantro.

Yields 8 to 10 servings

Friday, July 25, 2014

Baby Kale Saute

Baby Kale Saute

3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced (about 0.6 ounce)
1 large shallot, thinly sliced (about 2.2 ounces)
1-1/2 pounds baby kale
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1-1/2 tablespoons sherry or red wine vinegar

Heat a 12-inch deep skillet or large dutch oven over medium-high heat (8.0 on induction cook top). When skillet is hot, add 2 tablespoons olive oil and swirl around bottom of pan. Add the garlic and shallots to the pan and cook until garlic and shallots are beginning to brown. 

Taylor Farms brand 1.5-pound package Organic Baby Kale can be purchase at Costco.

Working in batches, add several handfuls of baby kale to the pan at a time. Using 2 spoons, toss the kale to mix with the garlic and shallots. As kale begins to wilt down, add more handfuls of baby kale to the pan.

Continue to cook and toss with 2 spoons and adding more baby kale to the pan as each batch wilts down. When all the kale is added to pan, add salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes or until kale wilts down completely, adding more olive oil, if needed. If pan still seems dry, add just a splash of water. When kale is cooked, toss in vinegar and remove from heat.

Transfer to a serving dish.

Yield 4 to 6 servings

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Simple Turmeric Rice

Easy Turmeric Rice

This is a very simple recipe for "Yellow Rice" or "Turmeric Rice" that goes well with seafood and poultry. Most recipes will require mincing garlic and finely chopped onions, measuring out herbs and spices...I just didn't have time for mincing, chopping and sauteing. I just made a very simple rice with ground turmeric and it worked out very well. Of course, adding garlic and onion will improve the flavor, but this will be my go to recipe for turmeric rice on a rush.

3 cups medium-grain brown rice, washed well and drain (1:3.8 pounds)
One 14.5-oz. can Swanson brand 33% less-sodium chicken broth AND add water to the chicken broth to measure 4-1/2 cups (36 ounces chicken broth/water combined)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 tablespoons coconut oil or butter (1.0 ounce)
1 bay leaf

In a medium-size (3-quart) pot, add all ingredients to the pot. Bring to a full boil. Give a good stir, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low heat and cook for 45 minutes. When done, remove from heat and let sit for about 10 minutes. Fluff rice, remove bay leaf and rice is ready to serve. If desired, garnish with minced Italian parsley or finely sliced chives and/or toasted pine nuts or pistachios.

Yield 6 to 8 servings

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Shiitake Mushroom and Scallion Frittata

Shiitake Mushroom and Scallion Frittata
Adapted from Martha Stewart, Everyday Foods

1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms*
12 whole scallions (aka green onions), including green parts, cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces (about 5.7 ounces)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and ground black pepper as specified in direction
8 extra-large eggs (about 15.3 ounces)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (2 ounces, then set aside about 1-1/2 tablespoons for topping)

*NOTE: Baby bella or cremini mushrooms can be substituted for the shiitakes, but will release a lot of liquid during browning. Saute until browned and all liquid have evaporated before proceeding with rest of recipe. Shiitake mushrooms are most reasonably priced at Asian food markets. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Position oven rack to center position.

Wipe shiitake mushrooms clean with a damped cloth or paper towel. Cut off entire stems and discard (too woody to consume). If mushroom caps are large, cut in half and then sliced, crosswise, 1/4-inch thick. You will now have approximately 7.6 ounces of sliced mushrooms. Set aside.

In a medium-size bowl, mix together the eggs, about 1.5 ounces (or about 3/4 portion) of the Parmesan cheese, and 1/4 teaspoon salt with a fork or whisk. Set aside.

Heat a 10-inch cast-iron or ovenproof non-stick skillet on medium-high heat (8.0 on induction cook top). Wipe some olive oil around bottom and sides of pan. Add about 1 tablespoon olive oil to the pan and swirl around the bottom of the pan. Add mushrooms and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Saute until browned, about 8 minutes. Add more olive oil if pan becomes dry. When mushrooms are browned, transfer to a dish and set aside.

In the same skillet, add another 1 tablespoon olive oil and swirl around the bottom of pan. Add the scallions and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Saute until browned, about 4 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium (5.0 on induction cook top). Return mushrooms back to the pan with the scallions and cook together for another minute.

Add the egg mixture to the pan and gently give a brief stir to evenly distribute the eggs.When the edges are starting to set, sprinkle with remainder 1-1/2 tablespoons (about 1/4 portion) Parmesan cheese.

Transfer skillet to the oven and bake for 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and let cool in pan for 5 to 10 minutes before servings or transferring to a serving dish.

Yield 4 to 6 servings

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Roasted Broccolini

Roasted Broccolini

Broccolini is a hybrid between broccoli and Chinese broccoli (Gai Lan). I first tasted broccolini when Earthbound Farm came out with "Broccolette." I purchased a 2-pound bag of "Broccolette" at Costco for $5.99 (now $4.99), where it is the most reasonably priced. I roasted the broccolini in the oven the same way I roast broccoli, only at a slightly lower temperature. Since then, it's been my favorite roasted vegetable. I prefer broccolini over broccoli. There is no trimming/peeling necessary in broccolini. I only trim away very little of the stalk ends because it looks dry (but that is not necessary). Just wash, dry, and cook. Broccolini is very versatile to cook with. You can boil, steam, saute, grill and roast broccolini, which roasting is my favorite way to prepare broccolini. Each stalk has a broccoli floret and a few long leaves. Some stalks will be thicker than others, so I vertically cut the thicker stalks in half for even cooking. It's that simple. Broccolini is very nutritious: high in Vitamin C, Vitamin A, potassium, iron and fiber.

1 pound broccolini
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Position oven rack to the center of the oven.

Trim very little of each stalk ends if it looks dry and ugly. Cut thicker stalks in half, vertically, for even roasting. Plunge broccolini in a very large bowl of cold water to wash well. Drain well and towel dry. In a very large bowl, toss broccolini with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place broccolini in one even layer on a shallow-rim baking sheet. Roast in the oven for about 20 to 25 minutes. I like to roast mine for exactly 22 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly in the pan. Transfer to a serving dish and ready to eat.

Yield 2 to 4 servings