When You’re Sick of Green Beans

My dad stopped by for dinner. When he left all the green beans were gone, and EVERYONE ate them (the roasted potatoes too, but that's not exactly a hard sell). Here's the recipe. Feel free to sub another Asian supermarket selection. We've rarely met one we didn't like (if it's spicy, add with care).

1 pound-ish green beans, ends trimmed

2-ish teaspoons hoisin sauce

Couple big pinches garlic powder

Tablespoon-ish sesame seeds

Veg oil

In large skillet add 2 teaspoons oil over medium heat. Add green beans, stirring for a couple of minutes. Add hoisin sauce & garlic powder, stir it up. Add maybe 2 tablespoons water to steam beans. Put a lid on it for 2-3 minutes. Remove lid and raise heat if necessary to get rid of excess liquid. Add sesame seeds and finish cooking beans to taste.

The whole thing takes less time to make than explain.

Eat – B

Btw chopped fresh ginger is a great add in, fresh garlic too – unless you're lazy 🙂

 

No Recipe, Just Roasted Veggies

Incredibly flexible, super simple…big batch roasted vegetables help compensate for the loss of summer.

These babies all spent time in a 400 degree oven, with tougher stuff like squash, peppers and onions hitting the racks first, tomatoes going in last- 10-15 minutes til bursting. Prep time 10 minutes, cooking time for 1/2-3/4 inch chunks up to half an hour. Adding cloves of garlic in their skin add to flavor when you squeeze out the caramel goodness later.

While this veg batch is nearly naked (a quick toss with olive oil and salt), lots of other herbs could doll up the final result (cumin, coriander, cayenne anyone?).

Then have fun. An ez side dish. Serve with rice and hot sauce. Toss with pasta, fresh mozzarella & basil. Layer on your fave crusty bread with chicken and/or cheese . A little balsamic on the hot vegetables adds zip. Works for leftover lunches. If you purée with stock (and choose type and quantity of onion wisely) you've got soup!

My list:

Eggplant

Zucchini

Yellow & red pepper

Red onion

1 quart cherry tomatoes

*roast new or chunks of Idaho potato too – serve with fried or poached egg

Eat-B

 

Getting Closer Carrots

A couple of years ago, my radio producer and I ate the best roasted carrots ever from The Little Owl – cooked with olive oil, almost black in color, we couldn't stop talking about them.

Since then (actually before), I've been working on my glazed carrot technique (don't laugh). And while this recipe can't compare, it was damn good. As an added bonus – my non-carrot eating youngest, claims these were the carrots he likes. **Note: Not knowing his newfound affinity to carrots, I made a small batch. Feel free to double down. I may for après thanksgiving.

Ingredients

1/2 pound carrots, peeled & chunked (or whittled carrots)

Nub of unsalted butter (tablespoon-ish)

Tablespoon-ish of light brown sugar

A few sprigs fresh thyme, or 2 pinches dried

Salt & pepper if desired

Use pan wide enough for carrots to spread across the bottom. Add enough water to just below covering carrots. Add butter & thyme. Cover, bring to a boil, then lower heat to small bubble away. Crack the lid after a few minutes to evaporate the water.

The goal is to get water to evaporate while cooking carrots through – play with heat and lid, you can always add more water (slim carrots cooked through in about 10 minutes). Add sugar and let dissolve over medium or lower heat – let most moisture disappear and allow carrots to caramelize. Sugar can bubble a little. Toss about to prevent burning sugar. Serve when desired color is reached. Remove any thyme stems.

Eat – B

 

Everything but the…Cauliflower



It's not a guarantee, but it's similar to high school yearbook status in my house. As in, "Vegetables most likely to be eaten..." If they're roasted and flavor dense or presented in a form residents are predisposed to like (i.e. puréed cauliflower and potato), I have a higher degree of success.

Thus the spiced and super roasted cauliflower is "most likely" or to be accurate, "more likely" to be eaten. I borrowed the high heat roasting technique from veggie guru Molly Katzen when she was in a phase.

Ingredients this time:

Cauliflower florets from one head
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
2 pinches cayenne

Preheat oven 425. Line baking sheet with baking paper unless you want a bigger cleanup. Combine spices-taste and adjust. Toss cauliflower with oil, then spices. Roast till golden brown or beyond - at least 15-20 minutes. We like it "burnt".

Eat - B

Note: spice combination is completely arbitrary according to personal taste.

 

The House Dressing, Green Edition

I get many calls for this salad dressing. Before I bought into the precious nature of balancing single estate olive oil and artisanal vinegar in just the right proportions, I ate this and happily. It's got a million uses from salad, to grilled veggies, to steak marinade. My mom called it the house dressing. This version is green. It's got a match in red. And we've always whipped it together in a blender or food processor (hello, Ninja!)

Probably for the first time ever, I tried to measure out ingredients, but adapt to your own taste.

Ingredients

1 big clove garlic

Small handful parsley leaves (less stem)

Small handful dill (less stem)

BLITZ BLENDER

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2-3 tablespoons white wine vinegar

1 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon salt

Several grates pepper

BLITZ BLENDER

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons veg or neutral flavor oil

BLITZ AGAIN – Adjust seasonings, oil & vinegar

Note: most recently I used this dressing with a minimal amount of mayo in chicken salad – a winner!

Second note: it keeps really well if fridge. Big batch it!

Eat-B

 

Veggie Zoup

In my house we call it zesty zoup, not necessarily because it's zesty (although it can be) but because we like saying zesty zoup. This vegan big batch recipe is a late summer staple. Mid winter veggies work just as well. The addition of barley gives a whole grain chewiness. Try adding quinoa if you'd prefer a hit of protein instead.

Non vegans feel free to sprinkle your fave grated Italian cheese. Even better cook this baby with that dried out rind of Parmesan lingering in your fridge 🙂

Use what veggies you have and feel free to sub. Making soup uses up pieces and bits you would otherwise toss. Feel free to use you processor for slicing, chopping & dicing – no judgement!

Ingredients

1 medium onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, chopped

2 carrots, sliced thin

1 larger zucchini, quartered lengthwise and sliced

1 larger yellow squash, quartered lengthwise and sliced

2 ears of corn from cob or freezer

1/2 cup puréed tomatoes, fresh, boxed, jarred or canned

1/2 cup barley

Olive or veg oil

In large stockpot over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon oil of choice. Cook onions 5-10 minutes until soft. Add garlic for last 2 minutes. Stirring and seasoning with salt & pepper. Add carrots, zucchini, yellow squash & corn. Add barley and toss the whole mess together. Combine with tomatoes & 5 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Lower to simmer and cook 20-30 minutes, until barley is cooked through. Check seasonings. Eat.

Eat – B

*note: Zoup can be made zesty with red pepper flakes, fresh herbs or pistou (blended garlic, basil, olive oil). Beans can be added for a heartier dish – jarred, canned or previously hydrated.

 

Rhubarb Goodness

Thank goodness I didn't throw out the last of the season's wilted rhubarb. Feel free to cook it at it's peak, but cut off the ends of week-old rhubarb and you've still got the delicious makings of a loose jam, ice cream sauce, fresh fruit drizzle or BBQ ingredient.

Please excuse the odd measurements. I threw it together, but boy is it good!

12 ounces rhubarb, chopped

1/3 cup vanilla sugar or 1/3 cup sugar plus 1/4 teaspoon vanilla

1 cinnamon stick

Dash of lemon juice

Over medium flame bring all of the ingredients to a boil. Simmer for 15-20, let cool and store covered in the fridge. More rhubarb takes more sugar. Feel free to adjust sweetness as it's cooking. Rhubarb thickens as it cools.

OMG good – B

PS – I think you could add a little orange juice and zest to the mix, or even better? a dash of orange liqueur!

PPS – Fruit alternatives: peaches, nectarines