Posts tagged ‘Garlic’

June 18, 2013

40 clove chickpeas and broccoli

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There is not much to be said about cooking with a busy schedule because usually with a busy schedule, there is not much to be said about cooking. In our Franco-American household, either we take 2 hours to cook (a mechouia, for example) or we order pizzas, because somewhere in between those two extremes, we just don’t know how to handle it. With one Masters student and one PhD student, some days there just isn’t enough time to take a break and cook. But we are learning, slowly but surely, how to make quick, delicious, hearty low preparation dishes.

This recipe comes from the book of my dreams at the moment, Appetite for Reduction — though who said anything about reduction (didn’t I mention pizzas just before?) What I really like about this book are the recipes with few and basic ingredients. We just don’t have the time to go on a full blown mission in search for haloumi!

If you like garlic, this recipe is for you, though I must admit, the Beard said we could even add more next time. Roasted garlic becomes less offensive than its raw twin.

40 clove chickpeas and broccoli

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Serves 4

What you’ll need:

  • 1 lb broccoli, cut into large spears, stems chopped into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1- cloves of garlic, smashed (break them into individual cloves and then smash them with the flat side of your knife, you can peel off the skin, the clove will be relatively whole still)
  • 1 15oz can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 cup vegetable broth

Now what?

  • Preheat  oven to 400. Put the broccoli, garlic and chickpeas in a 9×13″ baking pan, or some sort of vessel where they can be spread out. Drizzle with a reasonable amount of olive oil (2 tsp to be precise), salt, pepper, lemon zest and dried oregano. Toss to coat every bit of it. Spray it with some cooking spray (or a little more olive oil) and throw it in the oven.
  • After about 15 minutes, flip the mixture. Bake for 15 minutes more, and then remove from the oven to flip one final time. Once all is flipped to assure even cooking, add the vegetable broth. With a spatula, scrape all of the delicious stuck pieces off of the bottom of the pan and put back in the oven for another 15 minutes.
  • Once it is done, the broccoli will be slightly browned and the garlic nice and tender.

We ate this with some lemony couscous!

Bon app!

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February 4, 2013

Veganism Day 3: Chickpea Veggie Burger with Tahini Sauce

Day 2 to 4: Veganism is tasty!

-by The Beard

So here we are, beginning our little journey into veganism. My guide’s aunt –a prominent vegan– used the right words for a better start: ‘do not replace dairy for vegan junk food.’ Yes, because it would be so easy: we’d live off salted peanuts, lots of wasabi chips, potatoes and raw carrots, and fake butter and baguette. And Coke. Well, I already know (thanks to my not-refunded 70 euros visit to the endocrinologist, which is unbelievable here!) that, due to my anarchist regulation of insulin that we call ‘pre-diabetes,’ I am not really allowed to eat French baguette or potatoes, for it turns into sugar once in my blood. Now, I already inquired about Coke. You, the people of the United States, are lucky: Coke is vegan. However, we Europeans, decided that Coke should contain Beta Carotene 10% DG/F. Can this really be… FISH GELATIN?! ‘Yes, Sir.’ So that fresh bottle went down the drain. Problem solved. Forever. In France.

Now, there is one thing I must say is very important: I am thankful for my guide. Because this chickpea and apricot tajine was the lightest and tastiest dinner I had in months! For several reasons. First of all, there are some wonderbarful (huh?) secret ingredients in there: cinnamon and ginger were my favorite. Then, because it came after the wonderful meatballs and gravy pasta my guide’s momma used to cook every Sunday, allowing me in the guide’s childhood memories. After carrying two gigantic bags full of 10 kilos (20 pounds) vegetables for 25 minutes (do Americans have a different time measurements, requiring the use of a converter?!) because I live right in the heart of the city where cars are NOT allowed, I noticed that the tajine had been forgotten in the fridge. The last reason why this dinner was the best in months is because it was delivered to my door at 7 pm, right when I felt hungry again!

I don’t want to spoil the day 3 recipe, but it was just as wonderful. I also cook on my own, but it goes back to more basic things (soups and salads mainly). And I have no camera. I’ll keep you posted…

 

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Chickpea Veggie Burger with Tahini Sauce

(adapted from shape.com, serves 6)

What you’ll need:

For the tahini sauce:

  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1/4 cup tahini (sesame-seed paste)
  • 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • Dash of salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

For the chickpea burgers:

  • 1 (15.5oz) (400g) can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs, divided

What now?

  1. For the sauce, combine all ingredients in a bowl and beat until smooth. It is a little liquid but it’s perfect for the veggie burgers nonetheless.
  2. For the veggie burgers, combine all of the ingredients except for the breadcrumbs in a food processor and process until smooth.
  3. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally to ensure equal food processing.
  4. Mix the combination with the breadcrumbs in a large bowl.
  5. Divide the bean mixture into six equal portions, shaping each into a round patty-like disc. I tried both thicker and thinner patties and both were equally as good.
  6. Heat 2 teaspoons vegan margarine in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
  7. Add patties to pan; cook 5 minutes on each side or until browned. Mine were not crispy, crunchy all the way through, but they were still delightful.
  8. Serve in a pita with fresh onion, tahini sauce, lettuce, tomato.

We ate this with an endive salad, roasted Brussels sprouts,(and french fries and a pickle, to be 100% honest).

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(the Beard liked his with ketchup)

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November 16, 2012

Stuffed Shells | pâtes farcies à la ricotta

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Lately, I’ve been feeling like I just don’t have enough time to breathe.  Even if I do find a spare moment, I spend it agonizing about the trillions of other things that I ought to be doing.  Consequentially, I get nothing done, for I’ve spent all of that time agonizing.  Vicious circle.  In an attempt to save myself from a lack of cooking nervous breakdown, I decided that I would cook a little dinner for two.  Uninspired, I biked to the supermarket in the pouring rain to get some materials anyway.  Sometimes I go to French supermarkets to oogle the 3 aisles strictly devoted to butter, yogurt and cream.  As I was strolling through those glorious aisles, I stumbled upon the “discount” section (the French have a hilarious way of pronouncing it -discooont.)  A medium sized shell shaped cheese vessel caught my eye, and I was suddenly inspired.  I would do what my Mamoon does best and shove 4 types of cheese combined (heeaaaven) into the inside of my favorite food of all time (carbohydrates = pasta) and cover it with even more cheese.  Only after having made a garlicky and onion-y sauce to dump all over that pasta mixture like a warm blanket in winter.  Done deal. I was sold.  I bought all of the remaining large shell pasta bags on the shelf because goodness me, who knows the next time I will be able to find those here.

This recipe comes from the book that was and still remains king in my household, “Eat This, It’ll Make You Feel Better” by Dom Deluise.  That jolly faced and pleasantly plump man posing with eggplants on the inside of the book (no joke) taught me how to do the cooking that was usually improvised on Sundays.  Stuffed shells are usually made for a special event in my family, but I decided that just having the time to stuff shells full of cheese was special enough of an event.  And en plus, the odor of garlic and onions wafting through the kitchen is enough to make me weak in the knees, imaging myself back in New York, even though my feet may be standing in Strasboug, France.

Je vous présente….

Ma Ziti’s Stuffed Shells

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(adapted from Dom Deluise)

serves 6 hungry, hungry hippos people.

What You’ll Need:

Filling:

  •  2 eggs
  • 1 lb (500 g) ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 (200 g) pound mozzarella cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 tbsp parsley
  • few leaves of basil, chopped
  • dash of pepper
  • grated cheese for topping

Sauce:

  • 1 onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • pinch of sugar
  • Italian seasoning
  • 24 giant ziti shells

What now?

  1. Fry garlic and onions in a pot until fragrant.  Add diced tomatoes, pinch of sugar and Italian seasonings, heat thoroughly and then set aside.  That’s your quick sauce.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, ricotta, mozzarella, and Parmesan cheeses, parsley, basil and pepper.
  3. Cook giant shells in lots of boiling water until al dente.  Don’t overcook it though! They are easier to fill when they are a little stiff.  Drain, rinse with cold water to prevent sticking.
  4. Stuff each shell with a few tablespoons of the cheese mixture.
  5. Cover the bottom of a large baking dish with about 1/2 inch of sauce.  Arrange stuffed shells side by side in the sauce.  Cover with remaining sauce and a light dusting of cheese.
  6. Bake covered in a 350 f / 180 c oven for 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

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August 11, 2012

New York Style Garlic Knots

Every once in a while I get an unidentifiable and sudden craving for my New York.  I get in a rut.  I want the ability to just fly home, hug my family, eat a pizza, and come back to France by dinner time…though modern technology isn’t exactly working in my favor just yet (for human OR pizza transportation.)  When this happens (let’s say once every month…bare minimum) I feel the need to take to the kitchen to recreate what it is that I’m missing the most and then I can take to skype to get those mini cyber hugs (it’s not the same, but still it does work wonders!)  Usually, the hardest part is identifying the craving….what it is that I’m missing the most.  Until one random Tuesday I could be walking down the street and suddenly all around me, everyone has a head replaced by a giant garlic knot.  I’m not saying that this exact scenario happened….but I’m also not saying that this exact scenario DIDN’T happen.  Message received.

Off to the kitchen to recreate a New York classic that reminds me of Thursday night pizza nights where a “pie” was always accompanied by “a dozen knots” and the 40-minute wait for the doorbell to ring seemed like an eternity.  My mom and dad have been known to make their own garlic knots, but I think that I have uncovered a minor hitch in the process.  The usual technique would be to put raw pizza dough in knots on a baking dish, sprinkle them with garlic, maybe a little oil and then throw them in the oven until cooked.  The revised method?  Bake them in the oven with NOTHING on them, and then let them drown in a pool of oily deliciousness.  I guarantee an infinitely different result.

New York Style Garlic Knots

What you’ll need:

  • Pizza dough (homemade or store-bought!)
  • 5 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Now what?

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 and line a baking sheet with wax paper.
  2. On a floured surface (be generous), roll out the pizza dough.  Cut the dough into strips of similar size (some may be smaller than others which would only lead to some baby knots!)
  3. Stretch gently and loosely tie the strips into knots and place on the wax paper, about 1/2 inch apart.
  4. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until the tops start to brown slightly.  I would err on the side of underdone because there is less pleasure in an overcooked garlic knot!
  5. Combine garlic, oil, parsley, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Add the knots while still warm to the mixture, making sure to cover completely.  Remove from the oil and set on a plate.  Eat while still warm!

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