Monday, May 2, 2011

Simple Mint Syrup

Refreshing drink addition to the hot spring days here in North Carolina.

1 good sized bunch of Mint
1 cup sugar
1 cup water

Chop the mint, mix all ingredients on the stove, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 2 minutes. Will keep in the fridge up to two weeks. Add to your tea (to make mint sweet tea) or get your hands on some bourbon for Mint Juleps. Peeps and I are going to make Minty Lime Sodas!

I haven't kept my blog promises, but truth be told... I got a lot going on. Will have pictures soon to prove it.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World

Ok, like I need another book, never the less a cooking book.  But I want it.  I want it bad.  This book, just looks amazing!  While Peeps and I are not vegan, we have many friends who are.  Also I'm always up for challenging new ways of cooking and eating.  Vegan recipes are great for everyone.  Don't have eggs?  Just ran out of whole milk?  Still want to make something awesome?

Please try it for yourself.  I put some sprinkles in mine to make confetti cupcakes.  De-Lish!

You can find the recipe here. We substituted rice milk for the soy because its what we happened to have in house. 

P.S. for dinner we are having very not so vegan veggie lasagna.  Will report back later.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Simple Saute

Mondays can be a hard day to recover from.  Half the time I haven't been to the grocery story yet, and get stuck watching cooking shows on PBS.  By evening there isn't anything cooked and I'm ready for my wine/beer and some travel shows on PBS.  No food, no blog.  Obviously, last week, I fell victim.  Not this week.  I had dinner finished before 6, and eating dinner with Avec Eric, and cleaned up by Rudy Maxa.  Now all that's left is the wine and maybe some knitting after I fill you in with a simple dish that takes max 10 minutes.

1/2 onion sliced
2 broccoli tops cut down
3 medium carrots sliced
5 stalks of kale or approx half a plastic grocery bag chopped

6 tbs soy sauce
6 tbs hoisin sauce
6 tbs white vinegar
2 tbs corn starch
1 1/3 cup cold water

2 cups dried jasmine riced cooked as package directs (I do mine 1:2 ratio with lightly salted water)

Saute your veggies in a hot wok until they begin to wilt, approx 3-5 minutes.  While your waiting, mix your sauce ingredients in a lidded jar.  Shake until mixed well.  When the greens of the broccoli lighten and your kale starts drooping, add sauce.  Saute 3 minutes or so more until it thickens.  Serve over rice.

A real easy dish with LOTS of flavor.  Makes plenty for two, with enough for a tasty and healthy packed lunch the next day.  Just make sure your clean-up partner doesn't drop the super sharp knife on their foot while doing dishes.


Monday, January 17, 2011

A "Its Monday" Curry

Sometimes I struggle to sit here and write.  I'm not much of a writer and tend to use the internet to day dream and be jealous of other peoples writing and productivity.  Seriously, how does one sew a quilt every few weeks, raise a family, hold a full time job, AND blog about it.  I don't think these people sleep. I tend to spend a lot of my time in the kitchen, you know, cooking and eating ;-)

Now that its 2 weeks into the new year, and the holidays are slowly but surely over (even though our tree is totally still up and looking great),  my schedule has finally moved back to normal.  So in pursuit of better living through better foods, I am making a blog goal to post EVERY Monday (until I can't take it any more) for Menu Mondays.  I will try, like really really try, to post a new or at least interesting recipe that I cooked at some point during the week on or before Monday.

Tonight Senior Peeps is sick.  In our humblest opinion spicy foods are the best way to getting better.  Red chilis per 100g has 240% of your Vit. C, where as an orange has only 75%.  Its a pretty compelling argument plus we both like spicy food. There are still some good finds at the local farmers market.  And while the pickin is getting thin, there are still some good deals.  When we came home from work this evening I thought I would treat Senoir Peeps to a beautiful curry with some of the goods from the store.

1 med. yellow onion chopped
2 med. carrots chopped
1 cup brussel sprouts cut in half or quartered for the biggies
3 red potatoes diced into 1/2 inch cubes
4 "sprigs" of kale chopped
1 cup mushrooms chopped
2 tomatoes chopped
1/4-1/2 cup veggie stock
Ground Cumin
Curry Powder
Garlic powder
Chili Paste

With a large pot, bring a flame up to med-hi heat.  When hot, add several tablespoons of oil (a good thick coat) with a few dashes of Cumin and Garlic powder and let sizzle.  Toss in all the chopped veggies except for the tomatoes and mushrooms.  Stir, get a good whif, cover and let the kale wilt.  After about 5 mins, turn heat down to a med to med-low heat.  Add the mushrooms and tomatoes.  Again stir, smell, and cover for 5 mins.  The next time, add veggie stock and spices to your taste.  If you like a lot of gravy, add more of the stock.  I used far more Cumin (favorite spice) than the others.  In terms of commercial spices I did like 8 shakes of Cumin, 3-4 of Garlic, 3-4 of the Curry powder (which this company I'm using I'm not so fond of but I'm out of my homemade blend and gotta use it up).  The Chili paste is some serious stuff.  I tend to use 1 teaspoon in the whole pot and add more the plate as necessary.
Senior Peeps added like a whole tablespoon to his bowl.  Really likes the spicy.   Let simmer for 15-20 minutes and serve with some spiced jasmine rice.

Spice away your Monday blues, or chest cold.  Enjoy.