Monday, June 30, 2008

Everything in Gold

I was really looking forward to trying the black rice we got a couple of weeks ago at the Asian market, so I decided to have it with some golden Thai curry. It was weird!

Black rice is kind of nutty, somewhat reminds me of wheat berries. It wasn't necessarily appropriate for the curry. But by the time I finished my portion I decided that I like it anyway!
It was good! (well, I am known to love weird things).

Inspired by Susan's pineapple sorbet, I made this one with some coconut milk:

(yes, I made the cup)

The coconut milk diluted the pineapple sweetness, so I think that I will add some more sugar next time I'm having it. It was very refreshing nonetheless!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


The first thing I learned to cook when I became vegetarian was quiche. Last night I took it one step further and made it almost vegan. I found this recipe in this great blog. All the recipes there look so awesome (and they're super healthy), but I had to start somewhere, and these quiches looked like a good thing to start with, since I had some silken tofu leftover from the vegan mousse I attempted (very easy, by the way: just blending silken tofu with melted chocolate chips!).

I knew these were going to be yummy when I finished filling up the muffin cups. I started licking the bowl and then devoured all of its contents. This is such a great use for tahini!

I didn't make them completely vegan because I didn't have nutritional yeast - I used grated Parmesan instead.

I think I was too impatient, and took them out of the oven too early. They could probably use an extra minute or two. But I just couldn't wait to try them, since the batter tasted so good.
Even Mark liked them, and he doesn't like quiche. But of course, these are healthy, low-fat quiches.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Mexican Delight

Last week when I brought left over fajita people in the breakroom couldn't take their eyes away from it - wondering what the hell is it that it smells so good...
We had it again last night.

By the way, we [deliberately mis-] pronounce it "fa-jai-tuh".

They're very simple to make:
1 onion
3 red bell peppers
1/2 can (28 oz) petite diced tomatoes
1/3 of the yummy meat replacement I told you about (or any of your favorite mock chicken) cut into strips

Cook everything in a big pan starting with onions, then meat then peppers and finally tomatoes. Shouldn't take too long.

Load on tortilla laid with yummy cheddar cheese (Hoffmann super-sharp for me, please!), drizzle a good amount of taco sauce, and roll!

This recipe is good for 4 servings at least

Friday, June 20, 2008

Summer Foods

Summer solstice is today, but for me summer started at the beginning of three consecutive days of more than 110 degrees Fahrenheit, which happened sometime during last week or so. Summer time means summer foods, and this is exactly what we had last night.
[Mark always makes fun of me when I talk about winter foods and summer foods, but I do believe that distinction is appropriate: who wants to eat a hot soup when it's so hot outside you could easily boil it there?]

Last night's summer food was a quinoa salad. Very simple and tasty: quinoa, tomato, cucumber, olives, basil, green onions and goat cheese, all tossed together and dressed with balsamic vinaigrette.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Chinese Stir-fry with the Best of Meats

My favorite mock meat is the one we get at the Asian Market, Lee Lee. It's called Vege Ham (though it may be flavored differently). I like the chicken flavor, and I swear - if real meat tasted so good, it would have been much harder for me to become vegetarian! It is delicious! As a former co-worker of mine used to say: "It's am-AAAA-zing!!!"
I recommend even the non-veggies among you to try it! The only problem with it is that it comes in a gigantic roll:

And it's really hard to cut when frozen (as it should be kept all the time, I assume). Mark is using his body-builder muscles to tackle that problem. We only use about a third for each time we make something, and, for example, last night's dinner gave us today's lunches and some other day's lunches as well. One third is a lot! In a good way, of course.

Last night Mark made his usual Chinese stir fry: broccoli, red bell pepper, onion, shitake mushrooms, water chestnuts and bamboo shoots. And the chicken-flavored VegeHam, obviously!

I wanted to use the new black rice we got, but found out that it's better for desserts (but also for salads, interestingly). I'm going to try it anyway with some Thai stir fry some time.

More Pasta

It's not that we're having pasta all the time... We just had Indian the night before and sandwich bread before that. But Mark is a bit enthusiastic about his pasta maker, so on Monday he made some ravioli. I made the filling, trying to make it a bit more sophisticated and colorful, with sun-dried tomatoes and fresh basil. Alas, not only did the colors failed to show through the dough (as you can see in the picture - I'm already violating the rule in set in the subtitle), but my additions didn't even significantly change the flavor of the ricotta! Maybe I should have used sun-dried tomato paste?

The pasta itself was very good, and even Mark had no complaints :)

Monday, June 16, 2008

Hair of Angels

This pasta was made by Mark (from scratch, of course!) on Thursday night, but I forgot to post it on Friday, being busy with work and that kind of silly stuff. So here it is - better late than never?

It's just semolina flour and water, from what I understand. It was my job to cook it, and I'm afraid I overdid it. It was still good. The best thing about fresh homemade pasta is that leftovers are never dry - even if you just warm them up in the microwave (as we did on the weekend), they still taste just as fresh as on the first day!