Saturday, April 28, 2012

Black Bean & Quinoa Salad

We got invited to a lovely evening at Shawn's Mom's place to meet family members.  Rozanne has a very warm and welcoming family. We can't wait for the rest of you to meet them. The dinner was delicious. Matt (Shawn's brother) made a Quinoa Salad from his girlfriend Christine's family recipes. They shared the recipe with us. Here it is. Enjoy!

Black Bean & Quinoa Salad
1 can black beans, drained
1 c. quinoa, rinsed (it tasted dirty not rinsed)
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 chipotle in adobo, minced (or I hear some use chipotle salsa)
1/4 c. plus 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
6 scallions, diced
1 small red onion, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
1/4 c. chopped cilantro

In medium saucepan, combine the quinoa and 2 cups water and a pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Cover the saucepan and simmer the quinoa over low heat until the water has been absorbed, about 15 minutes.
Spread the quinoa on a plate and let cool.

In a large bowl, whisk the vinegar, soy sauce, lime juice and chipotle. Add the olive oil in a thin stream, whisking until blended. Add the black beans, quinoa, scallions, red onion, yellow pepper and cilantro. Season with salt, toss to combine and serve.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

TWD: Lemon Loaf

I love cookbooks. I buy cookbooks. I read cookbooks but this is the most I have made out of one cookbook. Here comes my post screaming in at the last minute. We are getting closer to wedding activities and spent the weekend visiting with new In-Laws. We have been eating so much it is kind of a joke that I am trying "NOT" to loose any weight before the wedding. My first thought was I would just skip it completely. It seemed like it was going to take too long and be a huge mess. In reality it just wasn't that hard. The lemon loaf from Baking with Julia comes together in no time at all.
 I was hoping it would be really, really lemony but since I read in some of the chatter that it just wasn't that lemony, I added the zest to the sugar. I let this sit together for a good hour. It smelled heavenly and tasted like lemon.
 I did not have cake flour. I couldn't even find it in the store. Again I headed back to the chatter where someone posted a little trick of adding cornstarch to the flour....ta da cake flour. The batter bowl and spoon were delicious. Someone had to test it!  Very lemony and creamy. I didn't even have to share.
 The final product came out looking just like it was suppose too (at least from the pictures). I thought it was very good tasting. I added a limocello glaze. I think this would be lovely as a base for a strawberry short cake. A couple slices with berries sauced over it would really set it off. Instead I opted for a cup of coffee and just enjoyed it. Head to Tuesdays With Dorie to read all the clever suggestions of things to add. I personally think next time I would throw in some blueberries.....delicious.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

TWD: Pizza Rustica

First I have to start with the obvious this is like no pizza I have ever eaten. Here in the bay area we do have Zachary's a deep dish pizza place that we love but no this is not that either. When Tom came home he said, "Great, I love quiche".
Now that we have covered that, lets start at the beginning. This recipe calls for use of my food processor. The food processor has seen little work other then pesto so it was fun to see that it could whip up crust easily.
This was amazingly quick. I did this the day before and refrigerated it till the next day.
The next day I made the filling. The filling sounded just like my lasagna filling and I saw in the chatter on TWD that many people added vegetables. I decided to add spinach...... but I think I got carried away. I added a lot of spinach and some red pepper flakes. It gave the filling this really pretty green color. I was thinking I should of made it for St. Patricks Day.

The other problem with adding spinach in the amount that I did is that you end up with a lot of filling. I had so much filling!! Rolling the dough went better then I expected but I didn't seem to have the same amount of dough as in the pictures of the finished pizza in the recipe book. I had no fancy cutters for the lattice. I felt like I needed a little more dough so the lattice would be a little more substantial. The cooking time kept having to be upped because the filling wasn't finished baking. The crust might of got over done but it didn't burn. :-)

All in all it went well. It wasn't my favorite but I gained a little confidence in doing crusts. At least I am keeping up with the group. The best part of doing it as a group is that these great cooks leave tips and ideas in the chatter. I want to thank them!

Getting fancy with the camilla - Happy Easter!