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Using Up Overripe Cherries: Toaster Oven Cobbler

7 Jan

Has a cold snap hit your town this weekend? Then it’s a good time to stay in and whip up a sweet, hot dessert (or breakfast)! This is also a great way to use up overripe berries in the summer months. You’ll need 4 ramekins or other small, oven-proof dishes for the cobbler. I used mostly all-purpose flour but replaced a tablespoon’s worth with coconut flour, just for kicks.

Cherry cobbler

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup to 1 cup cherries, pitted
  • 2 ½ Tbsp sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp cornstarch
  • 1 ½ tsp lemon juice
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract or almond extract
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • dash salt
  • ¼cup milk
  • 1 Tbsp butter, melted

Directions

  1. Preheat toaster oven (or regular oven) to 350°F  
  2. Toss cherries in 1 ½ Tbsp sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, and a dash of vanilla or almond extract.dsc05884
  3. Divide evenly into 4 ramekins.dsc05886
  4. Place ramekins into oven for 10 minutes, while you prep the batter.
  5. For the batter: combine flour, remainder of sugar, baking powder, salt, milk, and butter.
  6. Spoon into ramekins on top of the cherries.
  7. Bake for about 45 minutes.
  8. Broil for 2-3 minutes, to brown the tops.
  9. Enjoy on its own or with ice cream!

Easy Side Dish: Bombay Rice

6 Nov

Plain rice can get boring, especially if it’s accompanying a protein with basic seasoning. During the week, I often end up eating baked chicken with some vegetables (snore…) and the leftovers make for an unexciting lunch the next day. So I decided to spice things up with a recipe for “Bombay Rice” I clipped from somewhere a while ago. I made a couple of changes based on the ingredients I had available. This rice probably has nothing to do with India but it’s yummy nonetheless and it smells delicious while it’s cooking.

I made this rice in my four-cup rice cooker – this is the maximum amount of ingredients you’ll be able to fit in a four-cup rice cooker – but you could certainly make this on your stovetop instead.

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Ingredients

  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 small zucchini, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ cup raisins
  • 540 ml rice (2 ¼ cups, or 3 cupfuls in the little cup that comes with your rice cooker)
  • about 5½ cups water (fill rice cooker to the appropriate line)

Directions

  1. Put rice, water, curry powder, and cumin in the rice cooker, and stir. Start the rice cooker.
  2. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a pan. Stir fry onion, red pepper, and zucchini until tender. img_20161009_193518770
  3. When the rice is almost done, add the raisins and stir to mix.
  4. When the rice has finished cooking, stir in the vegetables.
  5. Serve! Here, my rice accompanies grilled chicken and zucchini.img_20161009_201356546

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

30 Jan

Nothing warms the tummy like a creamy soup. Here’s a thick and creamy soup made without the use of any cream at all! It’s a great, guilt-free soup on a winter’s night. If you want enough for leftovers or some soup to freeze for later, double the recipe. (I definitely wish I had made more soup – it’s so yummy!)

I cooked the squash and shallots separately from the other ingredients. If you’re feeling lazy and don’t want these extra steps, cut the squash into small cubes and dump the uncooked squash and diced shallot into the slow cooker with all the other ingredients. Then cook everything together on HIGH for 4 hours.

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Ingredients

  • 1 medium butternut squash
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and diced
  • 1 celery rib, diced
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • dash ground sage
  • olive oil
  • salt, fresh ground pepper to taste

 

Directions

  1. Cut butternut squash into quarters. Coat with olive oil and pepper. Roast at 425°F for about 30 minutes until tender and fragrant. Scoop out the squash flesh and discard the skin.
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  2. Meanwhile, put everything else in a slow cooker. Cook on HIGH for 3 hours.
  3. Sauté diced shallot on high heat for a few minutes until caramelized.
  4. DSC05271Add squash and shallots to the slow cooker. Cook on HIGH for 1 more hour.DSC05274
  5. Puree the soup in a blender or using an immersion blender.

Serve and enjoy! 

Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies

13 Dec

I‘ve tried many chocolate chip cookie recipes, including the one from Joy of Cooking… but this one is definitely the best one. I’ve found very similar recipes across the internet, but I made a couple of changes, to get the slightly soft, chocolatey cookies my husband and I both love.  As in any recipe, good quality ingredients are key – I like to use Nestle or Guittard chocolate chips here. I used a total of 2½ cups of chocolate chips in this recipe – a little more than most other recipes I’ve seen – and actually, it could probably use even more. If you think it’s not possible to stir this many chocolate chips into the batter, you’re wrong. While the batter might appear to be a large helping of chocolate with a side of dough, once these cookies are baked, they’ll have the right amount of chocolate.

Forget your diet, these cookies are worth the splurge. Plan ahead though – it’s best to make the dough and chill overnight for better results. I made two batches of these cookies, one with dough chilled for 5 hours, and a second batch with the dough chilled 29 hours. The second batch had a richer flavour – they were worth the wait! Use lighter coloured baking sheets to avoid cookie bottoms that are too brown.

Ingredients

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 ¼ cups brown sugar
  • ¼ cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 Tbsp milk
  • 1 ½ vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips

 

Directions

  1. Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
  3. Pour melted butter into a a mixer’s work bowl. Add white and brown sugar. Cream the butter and sugar together on medium speed.
  4. Add egg, egg yolk, milk, and vanilla. Mix until well combined.
  5. Slowly incorporate flour mixture until thoroughly combined. 
  6. Stir in chocolate chips.
  7. Chill dough for up to 36 hours.

    dough chilled 29 hours

    Dough chilled 29 hours

  8. Preheat oven to 350 ºF (for crispier cookies, preheat to 375 ºF)
  9. Form balls of dough onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Flatten slightly.slightly flattened the dough
  10. Bake for about 14 minutes or until golden brown, checking the cookies after 6 minutes (rotate baking sheet for even browning).
  11. Cool for a few minutes, then enjoy a cookie or two while they’re still warm!
  12. Cool completely; store in airtight container.

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