Saturday, January 31, 2009

Tortilla Black Bean Casserole

This is Mark's favorite casserole:

1 chopped onion
1 chopped green bell pepper
14 oz canned tomatoes
3/4 c salsa
1 T garlic
2 T cumin
2 15 oz cans of black beans, drained
1 c corn or more. The more the better
8 corn tortillas
1.5 c shredded cheese

In a LARGE skillet, over medium heat, combine first 6 ingredients, bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes. Stir in beans.
Spread 1/3 of the mix over bottom of 13x9" pan. Top with 1/2 the tortillas, 1/2 c cheese, 1/3 of the mix, remaining tortillas, 1/2 c cheese, last 1/3 of the mix. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes in 350 degrees F. Sprinkle remaining cheese and wait for 10 minutes or so before serving.

** I don't follow these directions very closely, that's why I ended up topping it with some more tortillas. There's also tortillas at the bottom! Either way, it's yummy!

Monday, January 26, 2009

A Match Made in Heaven

Yes - sweet potatoes and leeks! Can anything be better than a combination of these two divine vegetables?

This sweet potato leek gratin was taken from The Vegetarian Times. It's not yet online, so here's what you do:
Slice 1-2 sweet potatoes (2 lb) - 1/8" thick, set aside

In a small non-stick pan over medium-high, heat 1 T olive oil, and saute for about 8 minutes:
  • 3 leeks, white and light green parts chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1.5 T chopped rosemary
  • salt and pepper
Layer sweet potato slices alternately with leek mix, so you end up with 3 layers of sweet potato and 2 layers of leeks. Sprinkle 1/3 c vegetable broth. Cover with foil.

Bake in 450 degrees F for about 30 minutes.

Remove from oven and sprinkle a mix of:
  • 3 T breadcrumbs (Italian, or just add some Italian herbs and garlic powder)
  • 1.5 T rosemary
  • 2 T romano or parmesan cheese (optional)
  • 1.5 t olive oil
Bake uncovered for 10-15 minutes more (until breadcrumbs are nice and golden-brown).
Wait a bit before serving (officially 8 servings, but for us it was 4).

The cheese is optional, so it qualifies as vegan. It's delicious, and pretty easy to make -- the hardest thing was to slice the sweet potato :)
So try it!
[Leeks for a reasonable price can be found at Lee Lee's.]

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Pierogies with Sauteed Onions

We made them a while ago and froze them. The two times we ate them before were served with garlic - butter sauce. It was good, but we wanted to try buttered onions, and it turned out to be good as well! The onions' sweetness came out as they sauteed in the butter, and it was most complimentary to the flavorful pierogies. Yes, they were flavorful! Mark made the dough himself, and filled them with potato-onion filling. Much better than Mrs. T's, if I may say so. No offense.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Chestnut Soup

We found some cheap chestnuts at Lee Lee's. They come in a 3 lb bag. I love chestnuts.
But these cheap ones are SO hard to peel...
They make a yummy soup, though!

After peeling a bunch of them, with Mark's help, and getting our thumbs sore as hell, we both enjoyed a delicious and rich soup with some yammy bread.
I didn't follow the recipe exactly, simply because I didn't have all the called-for ingredients, but it was very good nonetheless.
Here are my substitutions:
  • Spanish cooking wine instead of Marsala wine
  • Milk and melted butter instead of cream
  • No mushrooms (though I'm sure they would have added a delicious kick)
So don't get cheap chestnuts from Lee Lee's! Get better (fresher? a different variety?) at Trader Joe's, or better yet - get them already cooked and peeled in a jar! :) Then this recipe could qualify as fairly easy.