Category: Cookbooks


As my back is slowly healing I have found myself chaffing against the inability to do anything.  I find myself pushing my limits by trying to cook at least once a day.

The first time I cooked since my back went out it took me well over 2 hours, almost 3, to make a simple pot of soup because I would have to sit and rest with ice every 5 minutes or so. After several months of nothing but canned or frozen food that pot of vegan ‘clam’ chowder was awesome, even if the last 20 minutes was spent in pain with an ice pack strapped to my back as I stood and stirred.

The other day I made a large pot of rice in the rice cooker not thinking about the weather. With the weather turning hot the rice can’t be kept out for as many days as when it’s cooler out, and as we all have experienced at some point rice just doesn’t do well in the fridge. I carefully stored my leftovers in an air tight glass lock container, which cut down on the fridge problems, then this morning I pulled out the 2 cups of rice and turned it into yummy rice pudding.

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Then because I was remembering to I added the recipe to my recipe box over at spark recipe.

Ingredients

      2 cups cooked Brown rice
      1 3/4 cups Water
      handful or 1/4 cup Almonds {natural, not roasted}
      2 tablespoon Flax Seed Meal
        Zest of 1/2 Lemon
      1/4 cup Raisins
      1 tablespoon Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread**
      1/4 cup Honey*
      1/8 teaspoon Salt
      1 Apple, diced into 1/4 – 1/2 inch pieces

*For this to be a true vegan recipe swap out the honey for sugar or agave nectar.

** Earth balance is what I keep on hand feel free to sub out for a preferred butter alternative.

 

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Directions

Preheat oven to 350

Into a 16 oz or larger mason jar that will fit your blender add: water, almonds, 2 Tbsp of the cooked rice, and the flax seed meal; blend until you no longer see chunks of almonds.

In a medium bowl mix: margarine, honey, salt, lemon zest, and liquid blend. Then add in rice, raisins, and apple pieces.

Pour mix into an oiled/greased {I used olive oil} 8×8 pan. Bake for 30 minutes, allow to rest for at least 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Can be served warm or cold.

Serving Size: Makes roughly 8 1/2 cup servings

 

My recipe is adapted from the recipe for Raisin Rice Pudding found in The Settlement Cookbook. I’ve made it the original way in the past before I found out that I was allergic to dairy products … I still miss Brie cheese but I digress …. and honestly I find this version to be much yummier than the original. Of course that could be largely due to the fact that I have never liked egg custards.

I probably should note that I’m a 3rd generation Settlement Cookbook user, and that my copy has just as many notes and added sheets of paper as my grandma and mom’s copy’s hold.

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Bread was getting low, 1/2 a loaf left, so it was time to make more bread. Today I tried the Wheat Bread recipe. Between the 1/2 loaf white, this mornings bagels (the remaining ones), rolls, and 2 loaves of wheat the bread bin is full.

The few seconds between pulling the rolls from the oven and grabbing the camera, Tdd had grabbed a roll and was munching away 😀

Dinner was Stuffed Eggplant, another Moosewood recipe.

Stuffed eggplant with bulgar pilaf

I was going to prep some dough for buttermilk donuts in the morning, but I’m feeling tired so if I’m done cooking/baking for today.

With DH returning to regular graveyard soon, and different nights off, I’ll be switching our menu cycle. Since Friday will become his Monday, that will become our pork night and everything will be shifted to match, which means that our veggie night will switch to Tuesday or Wednesday.

In order baked beans, pasta salad, and bagels.

First the baked beans, made using the recipe from Cooking For Consciousness A Handbook for the Spiritually Minded Vegetarian published by Ananda Marga. I was missing the dry mustard from the recipe, so I’m not sure if that impacted on the flavor. The recipe came out so-so which I think speaks more to missing ingredient than anything else, I doctored them a little with, gasp, a little brown sugar and butter, and they were fine. What was not fine was that no-one else would eat them, they didn’t even try a bite ….. grrrrrr. Which meant I was stuck eating a pot of beans by myself over 3 days. Needless to say I don’t want to see any baked beans for a while, lol.

Second recipe, a tuna-black bean-tomato pasta salad from The Settlement Cookbook, with a vinaigrette from the same book. This came out nice, except for the beans they were a little on the dry side, need to figure out that before I fix this salad again. I made 3 variations on this since Tds is allergic to tomatoes he needed a tomato free version and me, I don’t eat meat, so I needed a tuna free version for me.

I did add diced red onion to it and for mine I added some grated parmesan. Yum :), haven’t heard from DH yet if he liked the regular version, and Tdd picked out the pasta and left the rest.

Last the bagels, which I am renaming manna from heaven. If your on the East Coast, especially Boston to Upstate NY areas, you know how good a good bagel from a good bagel shop can be, how a good bagel is nothing like the Sara Lee or Thomases bagels that are in the grocery stores. Ok now picture yourself stuck in a world where those are the only bagels available, well at the grocers any way, Noah’s and Bruegger’s have found their way to California’s central valley region in the last 10/15 years, but none conveniently close by. Inspired by my success with the bread recipes from the web I searched for a a bagel recipe, found many read through around 10 pages/sites before settling on one that looked promising, Bagels|The Fresh Loaf. Copy & pasted the recipe to word trimmed out a little excess dialog and pictures, great reading just not printer friendly, got it down to a handy 2 pages printed followed to the T, well almost I forgot to sprinkle cornmeal on the baking sheets before baking. My other deviation was I didn’t top most of them, on 4 I sprinkled a little parmesan, the rest I left plain. Mmmmmmm, as soon as one cooled off enough to handle split it, toasted a little butter ……. ahhhhhh heaven, I haven’t had a bagel that good since I lived on the east coast. One bagel plus coffee, I’m full with happy taste buds.

step 1 sponge
step 2

step 3

step 4

step 5

oven ready

how long before nibbling begins???

For tonights dinner we are having Stuffed Vegetables courtesy of “Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant“(p72).

{Digression}When we lived in Ithaca, way back in the 80’s, I was fortunate to eat there on a few occasions with my parents. All I can say is, ‘oh yum!!!! the food was heavenly’, and I was thrilled to get the cookbook, it’s 2nd best to actually eating there in person.{/Digression}

It won’t be exact on the recipe tonight, I’m missing a few of the ingredients, so I’ll have to do the best I can.

Ah, I was missing a bit more than I thought, oh well I did the best I could, it should still taste fine.

Got the rice started rice
got the onion started onion
went to pull out the peppers ……. ulp 😯 😳 … only one big one left. what’s a cook to do, grab the mini peppers too 😆 . mini peppers
Stuffed as many as I could, drew the line at most of the ones that barely held a tablespoon of stuffing, put the remaining rice up in the freezer, I’m thinking it’ll go nice with the lentil soup that’s in there. Put 2 custard cups in the pot to keep peppers from sliding down, wait for the final step to finish.ready to cook
(If I remember, I’ll log back on later and add a finished result picture)

heres a couple of random shots
sauce

Grandma's bowl
Ok, so this one is a gratuitous mixing bowl shot, I love working with my Grandma’s cooking dishes, pans, and in her old kitchen. Every day I get to cook in there I feel extra blessed.

Final shots & comments
For all that my ingredients didn’t match the recipe 100% dinner came out nice. To make up for the lack of nuts, I served cooked black beans on the side and we topped everything with a light grating of sharp cheddar.

Finished cooking

Dinner & Blintzes

Tonight which is supposed to be fyo night I fixed DH the meal I had planned for Thursday but was to sick to cook.

Tonight’s menu was chicken, blintzes, and veg.
Chicken – simple bake with a little bit of seasoning.
Veg – summer squashes chopped & nuked
squash
Potato Blintzes – this was a first for me, having never made (?eaten?) a blintz before. For the recipe I turned to my battered & loved copy of “The New Settlement Cookbook“, not my mom’s copy, don’t think she’ll be letting it go any time this millennium{grin}. The recipe’s on page 427 of my copy.
Here’s a pic of the almost final result. blintzes cooking
They turned out decent, Hubby said that he definitely would like to try the cheese blintz in the future.