two skinny jenkins


130307 – Cilantro Pesto Pasta
130308, 1:05 pm
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , , , , ,

pesto01

I LOVE all the cheap, fresh herbs available here!  You can get huge bunches of just about everything for a little over a dollar.  Amazing.  It’s going to be hard to go home to my pantry full of dried herbs and spices after this.

As per usual, I’ve combined a bunch of recipes into one here.  One of the nicest things about this recipe is that it doesn’t have any cheese (and you really don’t miss it).  All the white pieces in the photo are toasted bits of blanched almonds.

[Serves 4]

  • 2 C cilantro, packed
  • 1/4 C blanched almonds*
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 C evoo
  • 2 T lime juice
  • 1/4 t red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 t sea salt
  • fresh ground pepper to taste
  1. To blanch the almonds, place them in a small saucepan.  Bring a cup of water to a boil and pout it over the almonds.  Let them sit for a minute, then drain and rinse with cold water.  Wipe the skin off the almonds.
  2. * Optional: chop the blanched almonds in the food processor, then toast over medium heat in a skillet.  This enhances the flavor and makes them prettier.
  3. Mix up the pesto: Blend the almonds and garlic in a food processor until they’re nicely chopped up/ pulverized.
  4. Add cilantro and pulse until chopped down.  Then process remaining ingredients and season to taste.  You may need to add extra olive oil or lime juice.


130120 – Cannelini & Roasted Red Pepper Dip
130214, 8:08 pm
Filed under: APPETIZER | Tags: , , ,

130127_CaneliniRedPepperDip

So simple.  So good.  Adapted from Smitten Kitchen to be lactose- free.

  • 1 15-ounce can of white cannelini or navy beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 clove garlic
  • 1/3 C lemon juice
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 425F.  Roast the red pepper for about 15 minutes on each side, until it starts hissing and the skin is blackened.
  2. Puree the garlic in a food processor until finely chopped.  Add everything else and blend until smooth.
  3. Season to taste.

ps. I made that bread, too!



091003 – Ethiopian Celebration!
091004, 9:39 am
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Ethiopian Feast

To celebrate my new job, Joe and i were going to go out for Ethiopian.  After my first excursion to the grocery store since ‘the accident’ my ankle was not feeling very good.  Plus the fact that it had been raining all day, made it tempting to stay home.   So I decided to make it myself instead.  Joe bought the Injera at a place called South End Food Emporium, just a few blocks from the Prudential Center in downtown Boston.  It felt pretty good to get back in the kitchen.  Now that I have a pretty demanding job, it’s hard to find the time to get into cooking during the week.  Also, my ankle has healed to the point that i don’t mind standing in the kitchen for a while (especially if i get something as yummy as this afterward).

cook by numbers

1. Yataklete Kilkil (Vegetable Stew)

  • 6 new potatoes, peeled and cut into 1″ cubes
  • 5-6 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4″ discs
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 T chopped ginger
  • 1 T niter kebbeh or butter
  • 1 t ground cardamom (I used 6 whole pods)
  • 1 C vegetable broth
  • 1 t fenugreek
  • 1 1/2 t tumeric
  1. combine carrots and potatoes in a large pot, cover with water, add 2 t salt and bring to a boil. Boil the vegetables for 20 minutes or until fully cooked. Drain, set aside.
  2. Puree onion, ginger, and garlic in a blender or food processor.
  3. Add onion puree to pot with butter, fenugreek, and tumeric (or nitter kebbeh) and saute for 5 minutes (do not brown).
  4. Add cardamom pods (or ground) and stir a few minutes more.  Add vegetables, 1 C broth, stir, and simmer for 20 minutes.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Keep on low heat while preparing the other dishes.  This stew only gets better as it sits.


2. Yemiser W’et (Spicy Lentils)

  • 1 C red lentils
  • 3 C water
  • 1 C onions, finely chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, finely minced or pressed
  • 1/4 C niter kebbeh (or 5 T butter)
  • 2 T berbere (this is a tad spicy – but not as spicy as takeout)
  • 1 t ground cumin
  • 1 T sweet paprika
  • 2 C tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1/4 C tomato paste
  • 1 C vegetable broth
  • 1 C grean peas (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 t fenugreek
  • 1 t tumeric
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Bring water to a boil and simmer lentils until soft – about 15 minutes. Drain and set aside. This should yield approx. 3 C lentils.
  2. Meanwhile, saute garlic and onion in niter kebbeh or butter in a large saucepan until translucent, but not brown.  If you are not using niter kebbeh, I advise adding 1 t fenugreek and 1 t tumeric to mimic the spiced butter.
  3. Add the spices and continue cooking for a couple minutes until fragrant.
  4. Add the tomatoes, paste, lentils, broth, and peas (if desired) to the saucepan and simmer (stirring every couple minutes to keep from sticking) until it is sufficiently thickened to eat with injera (about 30 minutes).

3. Gomen (Collard Greens)

  • 2 big bunches collard greens
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 T niter kebbeh or 3 T butter (i’m sure they use about 6 T in restaurants)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. wash collards, drain, and trim stalks from leaves.  chop the stalks into 1/4″ pieces and coarsely chop the leaves.
  2. saute garlic and onion in niter kebbeh (or butter + 1 t fenugreek + 1 t tumeric) until soft.
  3. Add the stalks to the pot and saute until softening, about 10 minutes.  Then add the leaves and cook until soft and dark, about 20 minutes.  Stir every couple minutes to keep from browning on the bottom.


090919 – roasted vegetables + couscous
090919, 9:11 pm
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , , , , , ,

Vegetables

2 BEETS, 3 CARROTS, 8 GARLIC CLOVES, 1 LEEK, 1 ONION, 2 RED POTATOES, 2 SWEET POTATOES, and 6 CHERRY TOMATOES.

Did i forget anything? This was all i could find around the kitchen to roast tonight.  I tossed the beets, potatoes, garlic, and carrots in a couple T evoo and some salt and pepper then popped em in the 475°F oven.  After 12 minutes I added the onion and leek (and some rosemary).  After 25 minutes more, i added the tomatoes and cooked 5 minutes more.  I then sprinkled a little parmesan over the whole thing and gave it 3 final minutes… at that point after opening and closing my little oven door, i bet it was down around 425°F or less.

I served it over parmesan couscous with a side salad.

This should be good fuel for our long runs tomorrow!

Roasted Vegetables




090915 – Quinoa + Swiss Chard
090916, 2:48 pm
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quinoa + chard

Cherry tomatoes were 2lbs/ $1 last week at Haymarket!   I have been using them in practically everything lately. Normally we can’t afford them, and they are one of my all time favorite foods, so it has been a big treat!  The other night i was loooking to make some comfort food for dinner, and this recipe really hit the spot.  We had leftover tofu from out sandwiches the other night, broccoli rabe pesto frozen from a couple weeks ago, and PLENTY of tomatoes.

Here is a link to the recipe.  The only difference is that tonight i roasted the tomatoes (tossed in olive oil, salt, and brown sugar) for 45 minutes at 425°F.  I will definitely use this roasting technique again!



090910 – butternut squash bake
090911, 1:41 pm
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , ,

butternut bake

At the beginning of this week, i set out on a mission to cook only recipes from our home ‘library’ and only things that i have not made before.  Well, now that we’ve prettymuch reached the end of the week,  and i know i am making pizza tonight, we have only made three new recipes.  it was the first week of school for joe, and some last minute outings thwarted my plans.  Still, a gallant effort and i am glad we made each of the recipes we completed.  Especially the butternut squash…


I am semi-obsessed with butternut squash and was happy to find another recipe for it that both of us liked.  This dish will definitely be making an appearance in our kitchen again this winter.

  • 1-1/2 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut in 1-inch cubes (3 C)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 8 oz. dried no-yolks wide noodles (i have been waiting to use up my bag of these!)
  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • 2 small onions, chopped (i threw in a little finely chopped celery as well – it was nice)
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 1 8-oz. carton mascarpone cheese
  • 3/4 C grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 C fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley, snipped
  • 1 C bread crumbs (i used some homemade Italian seasoned crumbs)
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. In bowl toss squash in oil; place in oiled 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Roast, uncovered, 30 minutes, until lightly browned and tender, stirring twice.
  2. Meanwhile, in Dutch oven cook noodles according to package directions. Drain; set aside. In same Dutch oven melt 2 tablespoons of the butter. Add shallots; cook and stir over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, until onions are tender and butter just begins to brown. Stir in lemon juice.
  3. Add noodles and squash to onion mixture. Stir in mascarpone, 1/2 cup of the Parmesan, 1/4 cup parsley, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and black pepper. Transfer to greased 2-quart oval gratin dish or baking dish.
  4. In the same large saucepan, melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter; stir in bread crumbs, remaining Parmesan, and parsley. Sprinkle on noodle mixture. Bake, uncovered, 10 minutes, until crumbs are golden.

This recipe is supposed to serve 8, but it made about 5 servings as a main course for Joe and I.  What can i say- it was tasty!



090709 – Mediterranean Barley Salad
090909, 10:49 am
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Barley Salad

Thank you SK!  This was delicious!  I rarely buy fresh herbs, but since i am making another parsley-heavy dish tonight, i went ahead and got some. I had been looking for a NEW eggplant recipe for some time when i finally went to Smitten Kitchen and found her recipe.  It was a little involved – one of those dishes where you can spend the SOLID 50-60 minutes washing, chopping, baking, and working the stove top.  But it was worth it.

I will definitely make this one again someday.  It was filling and tasty, with enough depth of flavor so that I didn’t feel bad not serving it with anything.  A wonderful midweek recipe that you can actually look forward to eating chilled for lunch the next day.

  • 1 1/2 lb eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (I used 4 baby eggplants)
  • 1/2-3/4 lb zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 10 T evoo
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t black pepper
  • 1 C chopped scallion (or yellow onion)
  • 1 1/2 t ground cumin
  • 1/2 t ground coriander
  • 1/4 t red pepper
  • 1 1/4 C pearl barley (8 oz)
  • 2 C chicken or veggie broth
  • 1/2 C water
  • 2 T lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 t sugar
  • 1/2 lb cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/2 cup Kalamata or other brine-cured black olives, pitted and halved
  • 1/2 C thinly sliced red onion, rinsed and drained if desired
  • 1 C chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  1. Put oven racks in upper and lower thirds of oven and preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Cook barley: Heat 2 T oil in a large pot over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then cook scallion, cumin, coriander, and red pepper, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add barley and cook, stirring until well coated with oil, 2 minutes more. Add broth and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until all of liquid is absorbed and barley is tender, 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, 5 minutes. Transfer to reserved shallow baking pan and spread to quickly cool, uncovered, to room temperature, about 20 minutes.
  3. While the barley is cooking, toss eggplant and zucchini with 5 tablespoons oil, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper in a bowl, then spread in 2 oiled large shallow (1-inch-deep) baking pans. Roast vegetables in oven, stirring occasionally and switching position of pans halfway through baking, until vegetables are golden brown and tender, 20 to 25 minutes total. Combine vegetables in 1 pan and cool, reserving other pan for cooling barley.
  4. Make dressing and assemble salad: Whisk together lemon juice, garlic, sugar, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 3 tablespoons oil in a large bowl. Add barley, roasted vegetables, and remaining ingredients to bowl with dressing and toss until combined well. Serve with slices of feta cheese.


090901 – Leek and Swiss Chart Tart
090901, 10:31 pm
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , , ,

Leek tart

Improvised.

I adore tart pans. It seems like just about anything you put in them looks dainty and cute and tasty.  Like pie, but more refined.   Unfortunately, I do not yet posess a tart pan.  Now, with each tart i attempt to bake in our pie plate, i am building a reason to buy a tart pan.

I have always wanted to make a savory tart, but Joe has a slight aversion toward (especially baked) eggs.   I, on the other hand, believe that an occasional egg is healthy.   I was attracted to the recipe initially because it sounded really healthy.  Full of leeks and Swiss chard – the latter known to be nutrient-packed.  However, this recipe also started out with a lot of unnecessary fat – much more than what you see below.

The Crust:

  • 1 C whole wheat flour
  • 1 C all purpose flour
  • 1 t rosemary + thyme
  • 1 t fine grained sea salt
  • 1/4 C olive oil
  • 1/2 C cold water
  1. mix together flours, salt, and spices in a medium bowl.
  2. add olive oil and mix thouroughly with a fork.  Add water and mix just until combined.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and knead just until it comes together.
  4. Use a rolling pin to flatten the dough into a disc slightly larger than your pan.  mold carefully to the pan, trim the edges and reserve the trimmings to make shapes (like J’s)

    Filling:

    • 1 1/2 T butter
    • 2 large leeks, coarsely chopped
    • 1 t dried thyme
    • 1/2 bunch Swiss chard, ribs removed, leaves chopped (about 2 1/2 C)
    • 1 1/4 C skim milk
    • 3 large eggs
    • 2 large egg yolks
    • 1 t salt
    • 1/4 t ground black pepper
    • 1/4 t ground nutmeg
    1. Melt butter in large skillet over medium-low heat. Add leeks and thyme. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover and cook leeks until they are very tender but not brown, stirring often, about 10 minutes.
    2. Add chard; saute until wilted, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
    3. Position rack in bottom third of oven; preheat to 425°F. Whisk milk and next 5 ingredients in large bowl. Mix in leek mixture. Pour filling into crust.
    4. Bake tart 15 minutes (if you are using a pie plate – bake for 20 min here). Reduce heat to 350°F and bake until filling is puffed and just set in center, about 15 minutes longer (25 minutes with a pie plate). Transfer to rack; cool 10 minutes.

    *I served it with green onions and parmesan cheese on top (always eggs with cheese).  And a side salad.  And some vino verde…



    090816 – vegetable pasta sauce
    090817, 11:04 am
    Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , , , ,

    Vegetable Pasta

    Still maybe under the influence of Food Inc., veggie dishes hold more appeal than meaty entrees.  There are more and more Farmer’s markets popping up all over town here in Charlottesville, and plenty of opportunities to get fresh vegetables.  This recipe was found in the August publication of In The Kitchen, a sort of local, organic food newspaper that can be picked up at the nearby Whole Foods.  The magazine centerfold has a month of recipes designed to minimize wasted food.  So the chicken you roasted one night might show up a couple days later in a chicken salad recipe. The following recipe made enough for 7 adults, plus enough leftover for 2-3 lunches.  I think this would be a great thing to make with fresh summer veggies, and freeze for wintertime.

    • 1 medium eggplant, peeled and chopped (i usually like to keep the skin on things, but was afraid the eggplant skin would be too bitter for this dish)
    • 2 onions, diced (i used one red, one yellow onion)
    • 3 small zucchini, grated (i used one yellow and two green)
    • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 2 C chopped red bell pepper
    • 7-8 medium-large tomatoes, chopped
    • 3-4 T each fresh minced oregano and basil
    • salt and pepper to taste
    1. heat a couple tablespoons olive oil in a LARGE, deep rimmed skillet or two medium sized skillets over medium heat.
    2. Meanwhile, heat a large pot of salted water for pasta.
    3. add the eggplant, onion, garlic, squash, and red pepper to the pan and saute till caramelized (all soft).
    4. Add the tomatoes, increase heat to high, and simmer until the sauce thickens (about 25 min.)
    5. Meanwhile, cook the pasta (spaghetti, angel hair, or fettuccine work well) according to the package directions.
    6. in the last few minutes, stir in the spices.  Serve with fresh grated parmesan cheese.


    090806 – Baba Ganoush
    090806, 10:24 pm
    Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , ,

    Baba Ganoush

    Thank you David Lebovitz!  This Baba Ganoush was delicious and super easy.  My parents have a gas stove top so i had a great time charring the eggplant.  As an appetizer for 4 adults, i used only one medium sized eggplant and improvised a little…

    • 1 medium eggplant
    • 2 T creamy peanut butter (you can substitute any nut butter if you don’t have tahini on hand)
    • 1 t salt
    • 1 T+ 1 t lemon juice
    • 1 clove garlic, quartered
    • 1 t evoo
    • 2 T chopped parsley
    • 1/2 t red pepper flakes
    1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
    2. prick eggplant and char over gas stove burner (so fun).
    3. roast in preheated oven for 20- 30 min (25 worked for me).
    4. cool eggplant, scoop out insides, and puree will all other ingredients in food processor till smooth.
    5. Add additional lemon juice, salt, and pepper to taste.  Will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.



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