Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Cannelloni and Cashew-Crusted Tofu

These might not seem like they go well together, but we didn't really have them together, so there!
It's been awhile since I got to update this blog, so things have accumulated a bit.
We had the cannelloni because Mark wanted to make pasta, and we needed to use some ricotta, but we didn't want to leave the oven on for about an hour to make a lasagna. Did you know that the only difference between cannelloni and manicotti is that the latter is made with a pre-shaped tube?

It's pretty simple to make: we used one container of ricotta (I guess it's about a pint), lots of mozzarella, and some herbs and garlic. It was enough for 9 cannelloni (4 servings).

I've been wanting to make the cashew-crusted tofu ever since I found something similar here. It was good, but not as good as I expected. Probably my fault; I never claimed to be a great cook. Also, the sweet-n-sour sauce was too chunky because of the kind of preserve we got. But I like cashews, and I could definitely taste the cashews here, so that was good. Maybe if I used a firmer type of tofu it would have worked better... Actually, I think that next time I will try it with the wonderful mock chicken I like so much!

Friday, July 11, 2008

More Than Just a Fruit Salad

Trying to find a quinoa recipe for dinner last night, I stumbled upon this one, and decided to have quinoa for dessert instead. We had a relatively light dinner (leftover pizza and some red corn on the cob), so a nice nutritious dessert was fitting.

I have to say I modified it quite a bit, not because I know better, but because I didn't have some of the ingredients. So mint and flax seed were out, though I'm sure they would make a good addition. I also omitted the avocado - just because I don't like it - and replaced the almonds with pecans. Mmm... pecans... Oh, and I halfed the recipe. One cup is enough for 4 small (dessert-like) servings.
I really liked the idea of cooking the quinoa in orange juice. Very refreshing! It served well as lunches too!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Cocolime Sorbet

Someone brought limes to the lab. I took 4 and made this out of the juice:

This is how I made it:

Juice from 4 limes (about 1 c)
1 c coconut milk (1/2 can)
2 c sugar
3.5 c water

Boil sugar and water till sugar dissolves, add juice and milk.
Put in large flat taper ware container and freeze.
Four hours later use a hand mixer to blend the frozen edges with the less frozen center.
3 hours later use the hand mixer again to homogenize the sorbet and make it nice and creamy.

That's it!

It came out pretty sweet. I think next time I will use half the sugar and maybe only 2 c water and an extra cup of coconut milk.
The hand mixer really works well and subsequently makes it very easy to scoop the sorbet. An excellent idea I found on an Australian website.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Green Power

Inspired by madcap cupcake again, I made this green smoothie and, as she promised, it was delicious! Certainly surprising. Even Mark, after tasting it, admitted that it was "...interesting...".
I am looking forward to having some more this evening!

After I had it, like Popeye, I had a burst of energy in me and I decided to lash it on the toaster oven. It looks almost like new now (which is also thanks to the magical powers of baking soda).

Also, I made the perfect summer food: cold Thai noodles with sugar snap peas and mandarins. It is one of Mark's favorite dishes. It is very good, and doesn't require too much cooking.

This is how it goes (4 servings):
You choose a tapper ware container that will be big enough to hold about 10 oz of tofu cut into 3/4" cubes, such that the marinade will cover it completely.

You put in it:
2 T peanut butter
3 T sesame oil
2 T brown sugar
1/3 c lemon juice
1/2 c soy sauce
1 t minced garlic
1 t minced ginger
crushed red peppers to taste

and mix it well.
Then you put the tofu cubes in it to marinate for at least 15 minutes in the fridge.

You cook the noodles (I use an amount that fits in between my index finger and my thumb) and wash them with cold water to cool them down.

You add frozen sugar snap peas (about 1/2 bag) to the noodles (they will bring each other to the right temperature), a small can of mandarins (or 1/2 14oz can) and the tofu in its peanut sauce, and mix it all together. It tastes great as no-heating-required leftovers, too!

We later watched the movie Chocolat and of course, we had to have some: