Grog and Vittles

Food and Spirits by an Vegetarian in Atlanta

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Balsamic Strawberries, Barley "Risotto" with Shiitake Mushrooms, and Vegetable Spring Rolls

On a non-food related note, does anyone else think it strange you have a choice of 7 musical selections to view when on the Taco Bell site (upper right hand corner)?

Balsamic Strawberries
  • 7.5 cu sliced fresh strawberries (3 "baskets")
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
After slicing the strawberries, stir ingredients together gently. Let flavors meld in the refrigerator at least 1 hour before serving chilled. Will last several days. Is delicious over toast or ice cream, but tart enough to serve at a meal.

Barley "Risotto" with Shiitake Mushrooms
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 cups rinsed pearl barley
  • 6 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Large Onions (Diced)
  • 12 Cloves Garlic (Minced)
  • 4 Sticks of Celery (Diced)
  • 1-2 lbs Shititake mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup minced parsley
  • 5 Cups veggie broth (or mushroom broth)
  • 10 cups water
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 18 oz blue cheeseSpray Fat (aka PAM)

Boil water with butter and salt. Mix in barley. Lower to medium low heat and cook for 45 minutes covered. Let stand for 15 minutes.

Remove the stems of the mushrooms. Discard. Dice the caps of the shiitakes.

Panfry the onions to a nice golden brown using a litte spray fat. Add the olive oil to the pan when done. Add the garlic, celery, and mushroom bits, until all are tender. Fold in the barley (it will turn to glue if you are too agressive) in batches. Fold in the parsley. Stir gently, distributing the oil and vegetables throughout the barley well.

Add the broth, reduce heat to low/medium-low and simmmer for 10 minutes, until the broth is all absorbed.

Stir in cream and blue cheese and serve immediately.

Vegetable Spring Rolls
  • 8" Round Rice Papers (20 or so)
  • 6 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 6 teaspoons wasabi paste (make it from wasabi powder and water- it's much cheaper than way)
  • 3 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1 cup mayo<6 cups shredded broccoli
  • 15 oz extra firm tofu
  • 3/4 cup shredded coconut
  • Whole romaine lettuce leaves
  • 3 tablespoons soy
  • 3 tablespoons lime
  • 3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper


Prepare each rice paper in water then lay out to sit for 5 min on a towel or damp plate.

Combine the ginger, mayo, wasabi and lime juice.

Toss the shredded broccoli, tofu and coconut. Add the mayo sauce and toss.

To assemble:
  • Take one rice paper
  • Place a lettuce leaf on the rice paper
  • Spoon slaw onto lettuce leaf
  • Wrap rice paper up into a roll.

Let sit for 15 min. Refrigerate if it is going to be more.

To make dipping sauce:
Whip together soy, lime juice and crushed red pepper
--Michael

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Sunday, May 06, 2007

Russian Cabbage Rolls, Broccoli Cheese Soup & Corn-Spelt Quickbread

Golubtsi (Russian Cabbage Rolls)

The wrap:
  • 1 Head of Cabbage

The stuffing:
  • 1 Tube "Ground Beef Style" Gimmie Lean
  • 1 cu rice
  • 2 med onions (diced)
  • 2 carrots (shredded)
  • 28 oz canned tomatoes
  • 2 tsp salt
  • Black Pepper

The sauce:
  • 2 tsp tomato paste
  • 2 cu vegetable stock
  • 1 bay leaf

The cooking fat:
  • 1 stick butter

The topping:
  • Sour Cream


Wash and trim cabbage head to remove dirty leaves. Boil whole head for 15 minutes. Dunk into an ice water bath for 30 seconds. Slowly unwrap the leaves, treating them like delicate little flower . Then, lay them flat on the counter, again like delicate little petals, then pound them flat with the bottom of a glass. (God I love Russian cooking)

Cook the rice in 1.5 cups of water.

Grate the onions (or use a rotary grater attachment on your food processor). Put these and 1/4 the butter into the pan. Fry until browning.

Crumble the gimmie lean into the pan with the onion. Set pan aside, removing the onions and gimmie lean with a slotted spoon or tongs to leave the fat behind.

Grate the carrots (or use a rotary grater attachment on your food processor).

Mix the rice, gimmie lean, carrots and onions together. Salt and pepper to taste.

Take your pounded out cabbage leaves. Put about 1 tablespoon of the stuffing in each leaf. Fold up into an envelope shape, then tie off with butcher string or a thread.

After enveloping all the Golubtsi, set them aside, and melt the rest of the butter in the pan you browned the gimmie lean in. Once melted, put 4 or 5 golubtsis in the pan, and brown each side. Set aside afterwards.

Remove the string. I repeat, remove the string

Boil the vegetable stock with the tomato paste and bay. Simmer on med-low for 20 minutes. Remove the bay leaf.

Serve golubtsi with the sauce and sour cream on top.


Broccoli Cheese Soup

  • 2-3 cups diced potatoes (pre-peeled)
  • 2.5 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1.5 cups chopped onion
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3.5 cups water
  • 3 cups (packed) grated cheddar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp dill
  • black pepper to taste


Peel and slice the carrot. Boil all the veggies except the broccoli in the water until very tender. Puree.

Steam the broccoli. Combine with the puree and all the remaining ingredients except the cheese and bring to a fast simmer on medium heat. Turn down to low heat.

Slowly stir in the grated cheese by the half-handful, until it all melts. Serve immediately.


Corn-Spelt Quickbread

Dry:
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup spelt flour
  • 1/2 cup coarse corn meal
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder

Wet:
  • 3 tsp sulfur free molasses
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup melted butter


Preheat oven to 375. Use spray fat (aka PAM), to coat a loaf pan. Stir together all the dry ingredients in a big bowl. Stir together the wet ingredients in another big bowl (making sure to mix the eggs into the milk before combining with the melted butter). Pour the wet ingredients into the dry bowl. Stir together, pour into loaf pan, put in oven for 25 minutes or until a stick comes out of the middle of loaf clean.

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