Thanks, Giada! (Stuffed Eggplant Recipe)

May 11, 2011 § Leave a comment

A few weeks ago I was watching the Today show while getting ready for the day. Giada de Laurentiis was on the show along with her mother, and they were demonstrating a recipe for Eggplant Rollups (or something like that). While I don’t remember the name, I did remember the basic idea behind the recipe that included eggplant, mushrooms, garlic, and tomato sauce. I made a few adjustments of my own, and this recipe is easily adaptable to whatever filling you want to put inside the eggplant.

Stuffed Eggplant with Yellow Squash and Mushrooms


2 eggplants, sliced lengthwise
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 yellow squash, chopped
6 oz. mushrooms, any kind you like, chopped
beans, any kind you like
2 c. tomato sauce
parmeasan cheese, to taste

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Green Pizza (or Pizza with Leeks and Collard Greens)

March 27, 2011 § 2 Comments

Green pizza, or pizza topped with leeks and collard greens is packed with veggies and topped with just a bit of good quality cheese. It appeals to people who believe they don’t like vegetables. I adapted the recipe from In Praise of Leftovers and I usually change it up depending on what I have in the house.

Ingredients, for the topping

4 medium leeks, white and light green parts sliced into rings and washed very well
1 bunch of collard greens, de-ribbed, washed, and finely shredded (could sub any other leafy green like kale or swiss chard)
1 large garlic clove, minced
olive oil
1 roasted poblano pepper, peeled and coarsely chopped (to roast – wash and dry, then coat with olive oil, put on a parchment covered baking sheet at 425 and roast until slightly charred, turning for even results)
squeeze of lemon juice
1/4 – 1/2 c. Gruyere cheese, shredded (I have also used Pecorino cheese.) Use the amount that suits you. Want a cheesier pizza, use more cheese. Just looking for the flavor, use less.
1 large ball fresh mozarella, thinly sliced

Preparation for the topping:

Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add leeks, collard greens, garlic, salt, and pepper and saute for  about 20 minutes until soft. Add poblano pepper, then lemon juice, and let cool for about 10 minutes.

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Quinoa with Roasted Red Peppers, Chickpeas, and Feta

February 28, 2011 § Leave a comment

I serve this Quinoa dish over a bed of baby spinach. The warmth of the quinoa wilts the spinach perfectly so there’s no need to cook it separately. Make sure you have enough time to roast the peppers. You could even do that a day ahead and have them ready when you want to prepare the dish. I’ve used red quinoa for this because I like the hardy texture. You could use any kind, or a combination.

Quinoa with Roasted Red Peppers, Chickpeas, and Feta

1 T olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 clove garlic, chopped
2 roasted red peppers, chopped (Coat 2 red peppers in olive oil. Put them in a preheated oven at 425 and roast while turning to make sure it’s even. Then put them in a plastic bag for a few minutes and the skin will easily peel off. Seed and chop.)
1 cup red quinoa, rinsed
2 cup vegetable broth (or water)
1 Teaspoon oregano, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup chickpeas
1/4 cup feta, crumbled
1/4 cup balsamic vinaigrette (mix of balsamic vinegar and olive oil with salt and pepper)

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morning coffee + protein smoothie (soy and dairy free)

February 23, 2011 § Leave a comment

I drank this too fast to get a picture, but it was the perfect breakfast after a sweaty yoga class.

Morning Coffee + Protein Smoothie

1 c coconut milk
2 scoops (probably 2T total) protein powder (i use a plain one)
Via or another type of instant coffee
5 pitted dates
handful of ice

Blend coconut milk, protein powder, coffee, and dates until smooth. Add ice. Blend again. I have just a regular blender and it still worked pretty well mashing up the dates. There were bits at the bottom of the blender that I scooped out and added to the smoothie.


Harpo goes Vegan (for a week)

February 21, 2011 § Leave a comment

Over at Get Natured, I learned that Oprah and the rest of the Harpo crew are challenging themselves to go Vegan for a week. There are some interesting and useful resources on the website:

It’s simple and straightforward, and of course addresses the myths of eating vegan. Plus, I always love getting new meal ideas, which is why I was checking out Get Natured in the first place. Can’t wait to try her recipe for Breakfast Cookies!

vegan enchiladas

February 20, 2011 § 1 Comment

These vegan enchiladas tasted a lot better than I expected, or perhaps than they look in my less than perfect picture above. However, trust me that they taste good! They are hearty without being heavy. I adapted the recipe from the Vegan Enchilada recipe from Ayinda Howell I found online at the New York Times. I substituted black beans for the tofu. I also reduced the amount oil because it just seemed like a lot. I think they would go well with a simple cabbage salad of shredded cabbage, lime juice, and sea salt.  Here’s the recipe with my substitutions:

Vegan Enchiladas (serves 2 – 3)

Ingredients, for the sauce

1 – 2 T oil
half a medium onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1 1 /2 T ground cumin (I use a roasted ground cumin.)
1 1/2 T chili powder
3 T all-purposed flour
3/4 c water
8 oz. canned tomato sauce
1/8 – 1/4 t salt, optional

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while you can still get cranberries in the store, make this cranberry tart!

January 5, 2011 § 1 Comment

This recipe from Apartment Therapy was such a hit at Thanksgiving that I made it again for Channukah and Christmas gatherings. It’s beautiful to present at a gathering because of its bright red color. It tastes tart and sweet. Fresh cranberries in this tart make it an excellent dessert that doesn’t feel too heavy and the hazelnut tart provides an excellent shell with a good texture and light flavor. It pairs well with vanilla ice cream, coffee, tea, or white wine.

Cranberry Tart with Hazelnut Crust (adapted from this recipe on Apartment Therapy)

makes one 9-inch tart

4 cups (16 ounces) fresh whole cranberries
2/3 cups granulated sugar
2/3 cups  maple syrup
zest from 1/2 unwaxed lemon

for the Hazelnut Crust:
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 cups ground hazelnuts
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1-3 tablespoons cold water

In a medium sauce pan, combine the sugar and golden syrup over medium heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is bubbling. Add the cranberries and turn over several times to coat evenly with the sugar mixture. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool to room temperature.

Prepare the dough. I don’t have a food processor, so I use the more manual method of preparing the dough. To start, combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter pieces and cut in with two knives or a pastry blender until the mixture is the consistency of oatmeal. If you could combine the dry ingredients first, and then drop in the pieces of butter in small batches until the mixture is the consistency of oatmeal.

Continue preparing the dough by adding the water one tablespoon at a time until the dough just barely comes together in a ball. Dump the dough out onto the counter and gather up and shape into a disk. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

Unwrap the dough and place on a lightly floured surface. Roll out to a rough 9-inch circle. Carefully transfer to a 10-inch tart pan with removable bottom. Press the dough into the pan and then form a lip around the edge by turning the pan while gently pinching the lip between your left thumb on the outside and right thumb and forefinger on the inside. Chill the prepared pan for 10-15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

When ready to bake, remove the prepared pan from the refrigerator and prick the bottom a few times with the tines of a fork. Line the bottom of the tart shell with pie weights or a layer of parchment paper and uncooked beans. Bake for 10 minutes or until crust begins to show some drying and browning.

Remove the tart shell from the oven and pour the cool cranberry mixture into the shell, spreading it out from the middle so as not to drip on the lip of the crust. Drizzle any remaining sugar mixture from the pan throughout the shell, again avoiding the lip of the tart.

Bake for another 30 minutes, or until crust deepens in color and the filling is bubbling. Cool on a wire rack.

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