Thursday, September 29, 2011

Tofu Burgers w/ Asian Slaw

For the burgers:
- 2 14oz packages firm tofu
- 4 tbs soy sauce
- 2 tbs sugar
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- 8 whole wheat hamburger buns

For Asian slaw:
- 3 tbs soy sauce
- 2 tbs mayonnaise
- 2 tbs peanut butter
- 5 tsp sugar
- 2 tbs rice vinegar
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 8 oz julienned carrots
- 2 zucchini cut into matchsticks
- 1/4 cup peanuts

To make slaw, mix all ingredients other than the vegetables together in a bowl
**If you want some extra kick adds sirracha hot sauce to the marinade
Pour marinade over carrots and zucchinis in a large Tupperware bowl
Close with a tight fitting lid, chill

To make burgers, prepare tofu according to note below
Mix soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, and cornstarch together in a bowl
** If you like it spicy, add about 2 tbsp chili garlic sauce to marinade
Lay tofu slices in a large shallow container, pour marinade over tofu, turning to coat
Refrigerate tofu for at least one hour, flipping once to get an even marinade
Preheat oven to 375, coat baking sheet with cooking spray
Place tofu on baking sheet, bake for 45 minutes flipping once after 25 minutes
Toast hamburger buns and top with tofu burgers and slaw

I like to put a little hot mustard or Asian dressing on the buns to keep them from being too dry.
Note: To prepare tofu, slice each block into 2 equal flat squares. Lay each square on multiple folded paper towels to drain. Lay another folded paper towel on top. Lay a heavy book on top of the tofu and leave to drain for about 10 minutes or longer.
My favorite thing about this recipe is the abundance of marinaded vegetable it makes. I use the leftovers to make awesome salads. I mix the veggies with nappa cabbage, soba noodles, and orange slices. Top that off with slivered almonds, sesame oil, and soy sauce, and you have a great Asian inspired salad.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Tilapia w/ Homemade Tomato Kalamata Sauce

Pure bliss. Fresh ingredients that come together to make a truly delicious and healthy meal. Try it over a bed of plain white or brown rice to soak up the extra sauce. You can use more expensive white fish, just make to sure to sear it a bit longer for thicker fish. 

- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 5oz tilapia fillets 
- salt and white pepper to taste
- 3 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 red onion thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup dry white wine **It does not need to be fancy, I use box wine to cook
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes halved
- 1/4 cup torn fresh basil
- 1 tbsp capers
- 1/4 cup olives pitted and halved**Use a mix of kalamata and black olives
- 2 tbsp dried parsley**Use 1/4 fresh if you prefer, I'm not the biggest fan of parsley

Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a medium sauce pan
Sear fish for about 2 minutes on each side, don't cook completely
Season each side with salt and white pepper while searing, transfer to a separate plate
Add onion and garlic to pan
Saute until onion are translucent, about 5 minutes, add more olive oil if necessary
Add wine, cook until most of the alcohol has evaporated, about 1-2 minutes
Stir in tomatoes, basil, capers, olives, and parsley
Cover and simmer for 5 minutes, add small amounts of water as needed to keep from drying out
Press down on tomatoes with end of spatula to break apart
Add tilapia back to pan, cover and simmer for 6 minutes or until fish is cooked
You may need to continue to add small amounts of water to keep the vegetables simmering, not burning

Monday, September 5, 2011

Quick and Easy Curried Noodles

This recipe is so simple and tasty, perfect for a cold fall evening!

- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 3 medium shallots chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, or less to taste, chopped
- 3 tbs red curry paste
- 1 heaping tsp curry powder
- 1 heaping tsp turmeric
- 15 oz can light coconut milk
- 3/4 vegetable broth
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- 12 oz package tofu, drained and prepared **see note
- 5 oz fettuccine
- 1 broccoli crown, trimmed, separated and washed
- juice from half a lime

Heat oil over medium-high heat in a medium sauce pan
Add shallots and saute 2 minutes 
Add curry powder, turmeric, curry paste, and cilantro, saute for about a minute
Stir in coconut milk, broth, and brown sugar, bring to a simmer
Reduce heat to medium and simmer 5 minutes
Stir in tofu, simmer 10 minutes
Reduce to low until pasta is ready
Cook fettuccine according to package instructions, in last 2 minutes add broccoli florets
Drain, add to curry mixture
Squeeze half a lime over pasta right before serving

Note: To prepare tofu, slice each block into 3 equal flat squares. Lay each square on multiple folded paper towels to drain. Lay another folded paper towel on top. Lay a heavy book on top of the tofu and leave to drain for about 10 minutes or longer. Slice each square into 9 equal cubes.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Red Curry Salmon Packets

This recipe is so simple and delicious it almost seems unfair! Less than 20 minutes until its on your table with about 2 minutes of actual work put in. If you like peanut sauce and salmon you are punishing yourself not to try this.

- 4 6oz pieces of salmon skinned
- cooking spray and foil

- 1/3 cup light coconut milk
- 1 tbs fresh cilantro chopped
- 2 tbs fresh basil torn
- 2 heaping tbs chunky peanut butter
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- 2 tsp red curry paste (or less to taste)

Combine all of the sauce ingredients in a bowl and mix well with a fork.
Rip 4 squares of foil large enough to hold salmon and make pocket.
Spray a small dab of cooking spray on each foil piece.
Smear a line of sauce on each foil then place one salmon filet on each smear.
Next, top each cut of salmon with a generous amount of sauce.
Fold in the edges of the foil packet bringing the ends up. Loosely close each packet by crimping the ends together. Make sure not to completely seal it off. You want the steam to be able to get in.
Place a steaming tray in large pot. Fill the pot with about 2 inches of water. Bring water to a boil on high heat.
Place 2-3 packets in the tray and steam with the lid on for 10-13 minutes.
Smaller end cuts of salmon can cook in about 9-10 minutes. Larger middle cuts will need 13 minutes.
Depending on how many portions you are cooking, you may have to steam in batches.  

Friday, August 5, 2011

Classic French Onion Soup

This recipe is simple and delicious, a great after work treat on a weekday! Sorry no picture, the whole pot was gobbled up too fast.

- 1/3 cup butter
- 4 sweet/yellow onions sliced and halved
- 3 cloves garlic chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tbsp thyme
- 2/3 cup red wine (see note)
- 2 pinches all purpose flour
- 7 cups veggie broth
- 5 slices Ciabatta bread
- 5 slices semi-sharp cheese such as Gouda or Gruyere

- Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat
- Add onions and grill until extremely soft and caramelized, stirring about every 5 minutes
- About half way thru add garlic, bay leaves, and thyme
- Add wine, bring to a boil, and cook until wine evaporates
- Sprinkle flour over the onions, stir constantly, so it won't clump
- Add vegetable broth, return to a boil
- Season soup with salt and pepper to taste
- Meanwhile, place each slice of bread with one cheese slice on top in the oven to broil until melted
- Cut each bread slice into cubes, place in the bottom of four deep bowls and cover with soup

Note: If you only have white wine, add a few splashes of balsamic vinegar and it will work just as well as red wine.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Insalata Pantesca (Southern Italy Potato and Tuna Salad)

If you're a potato-lover like me, definitely give it a try. Its super easy which makes it nice for a weekday dinner! You can even use dried herbs.

  • 2 lb yukon gold potatoes 
  • 1 1/2 pints cherry tomatoes halved
  • 12 kalamata olives halved 
  • 1/2 red onion thinly sliced
  • 3 tbsp capers
  • 1 tbsp parsley
  • 1 tbsp basil
  • 2 tsp oregano 
  • 12 oz canned tuna drained
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • juice from 1 lemon
- Place potatoes in a large pan of water, fully cover the potatoes with water, bring to a boil, boil for about 20 minutes with lid closed
- Potatoes should be soft, but not so soft they loose their shape. Place potatoes to the side and let them cool naturally.
- Combine tomatoes, olives, red onion, and capers
- Once potatoes are cool, peel away the skin and chop into bite-size pieces
- Mix the potatoes with the other vegetables then add the spices
- Flake the tuna into the mixture with a fork
- Carefully mix all of the ingredients, slowing pouring in the olive oil
- Squeeze the lemon directly into the salad, toss once more to spread out lemon, then Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sesame Spinach

If you're not the biggest fan of garlic, you can down play the flavor by mincing it or subbing garlic powder. Serves 2.
  • 6 cups washed baby spinach
  • 1 tbs vegetable oil
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 tbs sesame oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • a generous sprinkling of sesame seeds
- Heat vegetable oil over medium to high heat in a large pot
- Add garlic, stir fry for about 30 seconds, until garlic starts to brown
- Add spinach, cover and steam for 30 seconds
- Remove lid and continue to stir fry until the spinach begins to limp
- Add sesame oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper
- Remove from heat and sprinkle generously with sesame seeds

This side is great with lemon fish. Don't be afraid to let some of the lemon sauce find its way to the spinach!

Asian Lemon Fish

Mmmm traditional Chinese lemon chicken goes pescatarian with panko bread crumbs! Pictured with sesame spinach.
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 in ginger root peeled and sliced
  • juice of 5 lemons
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 2 tbs cornstarch
  • 4 tilapia fillets
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbs cold water
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • about 2 cups panko break crumbs
  • vegetable oil for frying
To make sauce:
- Combine water, sugar, and ginger, bring to a boil, reduce to medium and simmer 5 minutes
- Remove ginger slices, stir in lemon juice and zest, return to a boil
- Dissolve cornstarch in 4 tbs water, stir into lemon mixture, continue to cook until thickened

To make fish:
- Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper in a shallow bowl
- Whisk eggs, water, and soy sauce in another bowl
- Put panko bread crumbs in a third shallow bowl
- Dredge tilapia in flour mixture, then egg mixture, then press panko bread crumbs on the fillet completely covering
- Heat oil for frying over medium heat
- Once hot, cook tilapia for 3 minutes per side
- Drain tilapia on paper towel-lined plate
- Once ready to serve drizzle each piece with lemon sauce

I like to pour some extra sauce in a ramekin and dip the crunchy side pieces of the fish in it! Yummy!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Steamed Mushroom Dumplings

  • 8 oz mushrooms roughly chopped
  • 1 tbs soy sauce
  • 1/2 tbs sesame oil
  • 4 chives chopped
  • sprinkle of salt
  • dash of Asian 5 spice seasoning
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 30 wonton wrappers
  • 1 egg beaten
  • corn starch for dusting
  • 1 cup veggie broth
  • 3 tbs vegetable oil
- Combine mushrooms, soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger, and seasonings into a food processor
- Pulse until mushrooms are completely shredded
- Dust a large baking sheet with cornstarch
- To assemble dumplings: brush one wonton wrapper very lightly with egg, lay another wonton wrapper on top, to make a double layer, put a scant tbs of mushroom filling in the middle of the wrapper, brush egg onto 1/2 wonton edge in a crescent moon shape, press edges together to close, making sure it is completely sealed, lay prepared wontons onto prepared baking sheet
- Repeat this until you run out of filling
- Heat 1 tbs oil in a large skillet with a tight fitting lid over high heat
- Place dumplings in pan with one side facing completely down ( you may have to cook in batches)
- Sear 2-3 minutes until seared brown on the bottom
- Pour in a large splash of vegetable broth and quickly seal with lid
- You may need to add several splash to keep it steaming, steam for about 5 minutes
- Remove and place a napkin-lined plate
- If cooking in batches, add another tbs of vegetable oil before searing each batch of dumplings
You can serve your dumplings with your own favorite dipping sauce. I use 1 part soy sauce, 1 part rice vinegar, and 1 part water

Monday, May 23, 2011

Classic Shrimp Fried Rice

To make this recipe vegetarian, simply omit the shrimp and add in your favorite vegetables. Just make sure to pat off excess water.
  • 2 1/2 tbs vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups bean sprouts
  • 3 cups cooked rice
  • 10 oz cooked shrimp diced
  • 1 cup green peas
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 - 1 1/2 tbs garlic powder
  • 1 tbs onion powder
  • 1 tsp 5 spice Asian seasoning
  • 2 green onions chopped
- Place cooked rice in the fridge or freezer, it must be cold before you fry it.
- Heat 1/2 tbs oil in wok on high heat
- Cook eggs without stirring, then set aside
- Add remaining oil to wok, cook sprouts for 1 minute
- Make sure the skillet is sizzling hot, add rice, stir fry for 2 minutes, stirring with upward thrusts (so you don't smash the rice)
- Add shrimp and peas, continue cooking for 1 minute
- Stir in garlic powder, onion powder, and soy sauce
- Stir in egg and green onion


Monday, May 9, 2011

Shrimp and Tilapia Burgers w/ Tangy Chipotle Sauce

Burgers: (serves 4)
  • 1/2 pd tilapia
  • 1/2 pd shrimp
  • 1 inch knob ginger minced
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • pinch sea salt
  • 1 egg white beaten till frothy
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 3 green onions chopped
  • pinch white pepper
  • vegetable oil for cooking
-Put food processor bowl and blade in the freezer along with the tilapia (weird, but a must!).
-If using fresh shrimp, remove shell, tail, and vein. Chop roughly and place in the freezer.
-Cut tilapia fillets into 1/3 inch strips, then 1/3 inch cubes. Place in refrigerator.
-Fill a bowl with ice and water, then place another bowl on top. You will use this later for the shrimp mousse.
-Place semi-frozen shrimp, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, salt, and 1 tbsp of egg whites in the food processor.         Pulse until a course paste forms. With food processor running, gradually pour in the cream.
- Scrape shrimp mousse into the bowl over ice. Add chopped green onions and white pepper. Fold into the mousse.
- Sprinkle tilapia with salt and fold into mousse.
- Wet your hands, and make mixture into 4 medium to thick patties.
- Heat a thin layer of oil in a pan on medium heat.
- Cook for about 5-6 minutes on each side. Cook until golden brown. Only flip once!

Tangy Chipotle Sauce:
  • 1 tbsp lightly whisked egg yolk
  • 1/8 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1/2 cup cilantro chopped
  • 1/2 a shallot chopped
  • 1 clove garlic chopped
  • 1 small chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
  • 1/8 tsp adobo sauce (from can)
  • pinch sea salt
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
-Combine all ingredients **except oil** in food processor and blend until smooth.
- with food processor running, slowly pour in oil.

Serve burgers on a grilled burger thins with sauce, lettuce, and tomato! Enjoy!