29th July 2009

    Almost Meatless Potluck: Ful Mudammas Gyros

    lamb-ful-gyros

    A few weeks ago, we were asked by Tara Mataraza Desmond and Joy Manning to participate in a virtual potluck in celebration of their recent cookbook, Almost Meatless: Recipes That Are Better for Your Health and the Planet. I like the book’s concept — use less meat in recipes and replace it with novel ingredients to make them healthier without having to completely eliminate meat altogether. We had previously made and enjoyed the Albondigas, so this time we decided to tackle a recipe we’d never made at home before: Gyros!  Rather than solely containing lamb shaved off a vertical broiler, this version uses a few slices of grilled leg of lamb steak, filled out with ful mudammas, a garlicky, zesty Middle-Eastern bean-spread. It’s then topped with cool tzatziki and tomatoes for a great combination of texture and flavor.

    Chris says:

    Hooray for gyros! I’m glad we finally made these at home, I love them.

    Lisa says:

    …and there’s ful in it? I’ve only ever had the stew-version, this should be interesting — it’s the same ingredients?

    Chris says:

    Yep, basically the same thing, but no broth, and the beans are mashed. How is it?

    Lisa says:

    Wow, it’s awesome. The flavors are exactly right.

    Chris says:

    Sweet — it’s really nice in there with the lamb. I like the combination.

    Lisa says:

    Yum, me too. These are great. The tzatziki rules.

    Chris says:

    Well I made it with Fage, your favorite.

    Lisa says:

    No wonder!

    Chris says:

    So — overall… great success?

    Lisa says:

    Great success!

    Ful Mudammas Gyros
    (Reprinted with permission from Ten Speed Press and the authors)
    Tzatziki:
    1/2 cucumber, cut into 1/4″ dice (about 1/2 cup)
    1/2 cup Greek yogurt
    1 clove garlic, minced and mashed to a paste with 1/4 tsp kosher salt
    1/4 cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves, chopped
    Salt

    Lamb:
    1 12-oz leg of lamb steak
    Zest of 1/2 lemon
    1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
    2 tbsp olive oil
    2 tsp chopped fresh oregano leaves
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

    Ful Mudammas:
    1 15-oz can fava beans, drained and rinsed
    1 clove garlic, minced and mashed to a paste with 1/4 tsp kosher salt
    Zest of 1/2 lemon
    Juice of 1/2 lemon (2 tbsp)
    1 tbsp olive oil
    1/2 cup loosely packed fresh parsley leaves, chopped
    Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

    4 pitas or flatbreads
    Tomatoes, chopped (about 2 cups)

    Make the tzatziki: Combine the cucumber, yogurt, garlic, and mint in a small bowl and stir until combined. Taste, adding salt if needed. Cover and refrigerate.
    Marinate the lamb: Whisk together the lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, oregano, garlic, and pepper in a large glass bowl. Add the lamb and flip the meat several times to coat in the marinade. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 1 hour.
    Make the ful mudammas: While the lamb marinates, combine the beans, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, parsley, and salt and pepper to taste. Smash the beans with a pestle to form a textured paste. Season with more salt if desired.
    Preheat the grill to medium-high. Place the lamb on the hot grill and discard the remaining marinade. Grill for about 4 minutes per side, until the meat reaches medium-rare (about 130F). Take the lamb off the grill and let it rest for about 5 minutes before slicing very thinly across the grain.
    To assemble, spread about 1/4 cup of the fava bean mixture on each pita or flatbread. Add 3 or 4 slices of lamb, a dollop of tzatziki, and some of the chopped tomato to each. Wrap the pita around the filling, serve, and enjoy.

    4 Gyros

    Thanks again to Tara and Joy for asking us to participate in the virtual pot luck!

    Print This Recipe

    posted in Almost Meatless, Blogging Event, Greek, Main Dishes, Middle Eastern | 9 Comments

    17th July 2009

    Rice Noodle Salad with Vegetables and Tofu

    veggietofunoodlesalad

    Lisa got tired of my experiments and just wanted to make a light, healthy asian-themed salad for dinner, and this one, featuring rice noodles, quick-stir-fried vegetables, and tofu was just what she wanted.  The vegetables are still nice and crisp when you place them on the platter, and the entire dish is incredibly refreshing.  The recipe comes from The Best of Cooking Light: Everyday Favorites.


    Lisa says:

    Now this is what I’m talking about.

    Chris says:

    Have to admit, it’s delicious — but how could it not be? The dressing is pretty good too.

    Lisa says:

    Yeah, I love dishes like these; I could eat them every day.

    Chris says:

    You basically do, don’t you? This is just a stir-fry over noodles, really.

    Lisa says:

    Ha — yeah, you’re right! I knew I liked it for a reason.

    Chris says:

    You could add anything you want to this. Snap peas… carrots… yum!

    Lisa says:

    As long as it’s eventually added to my plate…

    Rice Noodle Salad with Vegetables and Tofu
    4 oz rice sticks
    1/4 cup chopped mint
    1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
    3 tbsp sugar
    2 tbsp chopped dry-roasted peanuts
    6 tbsp rice wine vinegar
    2 serrano chiles, halved and thinly sliced
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    2 tsp sesame oil
    1 large yellow squash, halved and thinly sliced
    2 cups thinly sliced red/orange bell pepper rings
    1 medium zucchini, halved and thinly sliced
    3 cups sliced cabbage
    2 cups fresh bean sprouts
    1/2 cups chopped green onions
    12 oz baked tofu, cubed

    Cook noodles according to package directions and set aside.
    Combine mint, soy sauce, sugar, peanuts, rice wine vinegar, chiles, and garlic cloves; mix thoroughly. Pour half of the mixture over noodles in a large bowl.
    Heat the sesame oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add squash, bell pepper and zucchini and saute for four minutes. Add the cabbage, bean sprouts, green onions, and tofu, and saute for an additional three minutes. Place the noodles on a platter, then top with the cabbage/veggie mixture.

    6 Servings

    Print This Recipe

    posted in Asian, Cooking Light, Main Dishes, Salads and Light Soups, Vegetarian | 2 Comments

    16th July 2009

    Reuben? Check. Vegetarian? Check. Wait — what?

    reuben

    This recipe appeared in a newsletter I receive from the Vegetarian Times and was just too bizarre not to try. I loves me a Reuben, but Lisa’s not the biggest fan, so I wondered if a vegetarian version would be any more appealing. I think I won her over in the end… This recipe won for best vegetarian sandwich in a Vegetarian Times poll.


    Lisa says:

    Wow. Um, would you be offended if I didn’t eat this?

    Chris says:

    Only if you didn’t at least try it — if you hate it, we’ll make you something else.

    Lisa says:

    Okay, but I’m warning you… um, you know I don’t like real reubens, right?

    Chris says:

    Yeah, but this is made with seitan instead of corned beef!

    Lisa says:

    You know I don’t like seitan, either, right?

    Chris says:

    Oh. Really? Well, uh… just try it anyway.

    Lisa says:

    Alright, but I’m expecting to make my own dinner in about five minutes.

    Chris says:

    So? How is it? I think overall it’s a pretty good impersonation of a real one.

    Lisa says:

    Hmmm…. this is weird, how’d it get that color?

    Chris says:

    It’s got beet juice in it to dye the seitan the color of corned beef.

    Lisa says:

    This is just bizarre. But… not bad…

    Chris says:

    Stop right there! Given your position coming to the table, I’ll take that!

    Radical Reuben
    Seitan:
    1 lb seitan, thinly sliced
    1 cup pickle juice
    1/2 cup beet juice (puree a 15-oz can of beets if not available)
    1 tsp pickling spice
    3/4 tsp garlic powder
    1/8 tsp ground black pepper

    For the dressing:
    1/4 cup mayonnaise
    3 tbsp ketchup
    2 tbsp finely chopped pickles

    8 slices rye bread
    4 slices Swiss or Provolone cheese
    Sauerkraut, for garnish

    Place seitan in baking dish. Bring pickle juice, beet juice, pickling spice, garlic powder, pepper, and 1 cup water to a boil in saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer 15 minutes. Strain marinade, and pour over sliced seitan. Cover and cool. Chill overnight.
    To make dressing, combine all ingredients in bowl.
    To assemble the sandwiches, preheat oven to broil. Set bread slices on baking sheet. Top 4 bread slices with drained Seitan and cheese. Broil 5 to 7 minutes, or until Seitan is hot and cheese is melted. Transfer Seitan-topped bread slices to serving plates, and garnish with sauerkraut. Spread remaining 4 bread slices with dressing, and place on top.

    4 Reubens

    Print This Recipe

    posted in Main Dishes, Vegetarian | 8 Comments

    14th July 2009

    Pork Posole

    posolerojo

    The Third Place Books close to us was having a blowout on used books a couple of weeks ago, and we picked up a copy of The Best of Cooking Light: Everyday Favorites for four bucks (I’m a sucker for cookbooks with pictures). This pork posole recipe caught my eye because it looked pretty much like a normal (aka, non-light) posole recipe. Pork is browned and then added to a stock made from chicken broth and pureed ancho chilies. This recipe is all about the condiments: a squeeze of lime and a bunch of cilantro really brings out the flavors in this soup.


    Lisa says:

    We must love posole — I think we have four different recipes on the site.

    Chris says:

    Yep, and each one is a little different.

    Lisa says:

    I’m not sure about this one, you know I like the stewier ones.

    Chris says:

    Well, even though this one is broth-based, I think you’ll like it.

    Lisa says:

    Hmmm… kind of bland.

    Chris says:

    What? Ahhh… hit it with those garnishes. Squeeze that lime! Add those onions! Savor the cilantro!

    Lisa says:

    Wow, that makes a big difference… yum! It’s definitely growing on me.

    Chris says:

    Yeah, keep going…

    Lisa says:

    Awesome — I’m going back for more.

    Chris says:

    Mission Accomplished!

    Pork Posole
    4 ancho chilies, stemmed and seeded
    2 cups boiling water
    1 tbsp cumin seeds
    1 tbsp peanut oil
    1 1/2 lbs boneless pork loin, trimmed and cut into (1/2″) pieces
    1 1/2 cups chopped onion
    4 garlic cloves, minced
    4 cups chicken broth
    2 tbsp sugar
    3/4 tsp salt
    2 15.5-oz cans white hominy, undrained
    sliced radishes
    chopped green onions
    minced fresh cilantro
    lime slices

    Heat a cast-iron skillet over high heat. Place chilies in pan; flatten with a spatula. Cook 10 seconds on each side or until blackened. Combine toasted chilies and 2 cups boiling water in a bowl; let stand 10 minutes or until soft. Place pepper mixture in a blender; process until smooth.

    Cook cumin seeds in a large Dutch oven over medium heat for 1 minute or until toasted and fragrant. Place in a spice or coffee grinder; process until finely ground.

    Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add pork; cook 5 minutes, browning on all sides. Do this in batches if you must — don’t crowd the pork or it’ll steam instead of brown. Remove pork from pan. Reduce heat to medium. Add onion and garlic to pan; cook 8 minutes or until onion is browned, stirring frequently. Stir in pork, pureed chilies, toasted ground cumin, broth, sugar, salt, and hominy; bring to a simmer. Cook 30 minutes or until pork is tender. Spoon equal portions posole into each of 6 bowls; top each serving with radishes, green onions, and cilantro. Serve with lime slices.

    6 Servings

    Print This Recipe

    posted in Cooking Light, Main Dishes, Mexican, Soups and Stews | 0 Comments

    6th July 2009

    Catch-Up Post #5: Honey Sesame Shrimp

    honeyglazedshrimp

    This shrimp recipe from The Barbecue! Bible was fantastic — the shrimp come out plump, moist and delicious, with a sweet, slightly spicy honey glaze. Lisa and I loved this preparation and will definitely make it again. On an unrelated note, we’re almost done with the catch-up posts and will return to our regularly scheduled conversations shortly. :)

    Honey Sesame Shrimp
    1.5 lbs jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
    5 tbsp sesame oil
    3 tbsp rice wine, sake, or dry sherry
    3 tbsp soy sauce
    1 1/2 tbsp honey
    1 1/2 tbsp sesame seeds
    1 tbsp Thai sweet chile sauce
    1/2 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
    2 cloves garlic, smashed
    2 slices (1/4″ thick) fresh ginger
    2 scallions, trimmed, white part smashed, green part finely chopped and set aside for garnish

    Rinse the shrimp under cold running water, then drain and blot dry with paper towels. Set aside while you prepare the marinade.
    Combine three tablespoons of the sesame oil, the rice wine, soy sauce, honey, sesame seeds, chile sauce, and five-spice powder in a large bowl and whisk to blend. Stir in the garlic, ginger, scallions, and shrimp to coat, then cover and let marinate in the refrigerator for 30-60 minutes.
    Preheat the grill to high.
    Using a slotted spoon, remove the shrimp from the marinade to a bowl and toss with the remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil. Pour the marinade into a saucepan; remove and discard the garlic, ginger, and scallion whites using the slotted spoon. Bring the marinade to a boil over medium-high heat and cook, uncovered, to a thick, syrupy glaze, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
    When ready to cook, oil the grate. Arrange the shrimp on the hot grate and grill, turning with tongs, until nicely browned on the outside and firm and pink inside, about 2 minutes per side. Brush the shrimp with the glaze as they cook.

    Transfer the shrimp to serving plates and or a platter and sprinkle with the scallion greens. Serve immediately.

    4 Servings

    Print This Recipe

    posted in Main Dishes, The Barbecue Bible | 6 Comments


    Page optimized by WP Minify WordPress Plugin