"Oh, I may be on the side of the angels...but don't think for one second that I am one of them." - Sherlock, The Reichenbach Fall

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Amy makes salad

What do you get when you combine a bag of salad with peas, cannelloni beans and Italian dressing?   Amy's latest salad creations.  She also roasted some Brussels sprouts and tossed a few of those in there.   Looking forward to more Amy creativity in the kitchen!

(This post was saved in my drafts box, and I hadn't posted it until now.  This salad was very good, and I hope to have Amy make some more salad soon.)

Vegetarian roots, vegan dreams

I'm trying to list all the different new recipes I want to try in the next couple of weeks.  Of course, I'll have to wait until payday to do real grocery shopping. (I might have most of the ingredients for the lasagna, I'm not sure.)

Classic Vegan Lasagne  PETA and I are not quite simpatico for a few reasons (can you say exploitation of women, and a few other things) but I do applaud their efforts to help people give up meat.  This recipe looks fabulous and I've just got to try it.

Chickpea and Rice Soup with a little Kale  This is a bit work intensive, but I've never known Isa Chandra Moskowitz and the PPK to disappoint.  Besides, I still have a truckload of chickpeas I need to use.

Red Lentil Thai Chili  This recipe looks like a winner, though I don't want to make it too hot. 

And some ratatouille... summer is a good time for ratatouille.

Smoky Fiesta Black Bean Tamales

Smoky Fiesta Black Bean Tamales

2 cups masa harina
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 sweet onion, diced small
1 large carrot, diced small
1 red bell pepper, diced small
1 can diced green chiles or 1 Anaheim pepper, diced
2 minced garlic cloves
1 T. baking powder
1 1/2 t. sea salt
1 T. nutritional yeast
1-2 t. liquid smoke (depending on your preference)
1 t. red chili flakes
1 t. mesquite powder (optional)
1 C. cashews (soaked for 4-6 hours if you don’t have a power blender)
1 1/4 C. water
20 dried corn husks

Method: Place the corn husks in a large bowl of hot water. Cover with a plate so that the husks stay submerged. Next, make cashew cream, combine cashews with the water and blend until completely smooth. Set aside. Heat a non-stick sauté pan over medium heat, add onion, carrot, bell pepper and Anaheim peppers (if using). I used a dry pan (you may need to add a bit of broth or water to your pan if it starts to stick) and stirred occasionally until the onions were translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic cloves and red chili flakes and heat for a minute or two more. Set aside. In a medium bowl, combine masa harina, baking powder, sea salt, mesquite powder and nutritional yeast with a wire whisk. Add the vegetables (including the canned green chilies) to the masa harina and stir to evenly distribute. Now add the cashew cream and mix all to combine a nice moist dough. If dough seems too dry, add water a Tablespoon at a time. Using a 1/3 cup measure, scoop the tamale dough onto a corn husk. Roll up tightly like a burrito, tucking in the ends as you go. My batch made 15 tamales, but a few of my corn husks were small, so I needed to use 2 husks to get it to roll up properly (which is why I included 20 husks). Next, put a steaming basket inside a large lidded pot, add water, making sure the water doesn’t rise above the bottom of the steaming basket. Heat on stove until water is boiling. Add the tamales carefully to the steaming basket so they don’t unravel. Reduce heat to medium-low and steam, with the pot lid on, for 45-50 minutes. Tamales are ready when the dough is firm and holds together. Remove from heat and let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Well, I can already say I forgot to put in the liquid smoke.  Because there's no place where it says in this recipe to add it.  The ingredients are not in order, so I had to figure out what to do with what was in the ingredients as I read the recipe.  Well, they won't be smoky, but hopefully will taste okay.  I will add liquid smoke to the leftover mixture tomorrow (I will have to remember to cut it in half)

Tamales are a LOT of work.  The kids were helpful, so that was good.  And if all else fails, well, we can have beans, vegetables and bread.  I am steaming them on top of the stove and in the rice cooker (which has a steaming basket for veggies)