Archive for the 'vegetarian' Category

Crispy Black Bean & Feta Tacos with Brussels Sprout Slaw

Black bean tacos Crispy Black Bean & Feta Tacos with Brussels Sprout Slaw

Ah, January. Everyone’s so busy making this our Best! Year! Ever! And to that and, I know many of you are juicing it up, pumping it up, sweating it out, paying your holiday penance by eschewing fat/carbs/protein/solids or being exclusive to any of the above. As for me, I downloaded a “good habit” app and instructed it to remind me to drink more water, and now I turn off the alarm on my phone several times a day and feel guilty about the fact that I should be drinking more water.

black bean tacos 3 Crispy Black Bean & Feta Tacos with Brussels Sprout Slaw

I’d like to say I’m immune to it all, but I do get caught up in the healthy eating vibe, and post-cookiepalooza is as good a time of year as any to realize that Almond Roca for breakfast is not necessarily a good life habit, and a dramatic drop in food-centric parties and epic 8 course dinners makes it a bit easier to wean oneself off the literal gravy train. Most years, instead of dramatically breaking up with all things doughy and delicious, I quietly promise myself I’ll eat more soup, and more veggies, and have more dinner parties. These resolutions are on the roster most years, along with fresh motivation to eat more nutrient-dense things. (Alas, this does not include extra-gooey cinnamon buns. But fortunately it’s what you do most of the time that matters, not all of the time.)

black bean tacos 2 Crispy Black Bean & Feta Tacos with Brussels Sprout Slaw

I made tacos. Tacos! Tacos are trendy this year. You can open up a little taqueria in the kitchen, mash up some canned black beans with a pinch of chili powder and cumin and a bunch of crumbled feta, wrap it all up in a corn tortilla and cook until crisp, then stuff the extra room with Brussels sprout slaw. They’re quite tasty-and fast, good for you and cheap. A resolution all wrapped up and ready to eat.

Crispy Black Bean & Feta Tacos with Brussels Sprout Slaw

Adapted from Bon Appetit, February 2009.

19 oz (540 mL) can black beans, rinsed and drained
juice of a lime, divided
2 tsp. chili powder
½ tsp. cumin
salt and pepper
½-1 cup crumbled feta cheese
2 cups finely shredded Brussels sprouts
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tsp. honey
canola oil, for cooking
1 pkg. small fresh corn tortillas

In a medium bowl, roughly mash the black beans with a squeeze of lime juice, the chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Toss in the feta. In a small bowl, toss the shredded Brussels sprouts and cilantro with a drizzle of olive or canola oil, the honey and another good squeeze of lime. Season with salt and pepper.

Heat a generous drizzle of oil in a heavy skillet set over medium-high heat. Warm the tortillas to make them more pliable, then fill with the bean mixture, folding it over to enclose. Cook in the hot skillet, turning as necessary, until golden and crisp. Fill with the Brussels sprout slaw.

Serve immediately. Serves 6 or so.

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January 09 2014 | beans and vegetarian | 9 Comments »

12 Days: Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto

Asparagus w Prosciutto Cheese 1 12 Days: Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto

Party invitations are starting to maraud my inbox; leaving the morning after Halloween and arriving home in mid-November, it’s suddenly time to look at the calendar and check off dates for parties and cookie exchanges (maybe another this year?) and all the fun stuff that leads up to Christmas, and think about all the baking there is to be done, and dream up food that can be eaten with your fingers. (For the aforementioned party, of course.)

Asparagus w Prosciutto Cheese 4 12 Days: Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto

Since Christmas is in Six! Weeks! I thought I’d post 12 days of holiday-inspired recipes (cliché I know, but there’s no way around it) – two each week: breakfasty things and gifty things and cocktail party things, and then give a fun kitchen toy away each Friday. Deal? And Wednesday’s recipe will hint at the giveaway on Friday. Fun and games! This particular recipe counts as party food and brunch food. Double whammy.

Asparagus w Prosciutto Cheese 5 12 Days: Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto

I know asparagus season is long gone, but these are really crazy tasty, the perfect combination of gooey-salty-crunchy, and can be assembled ahead and finished up in the oven or skillet or on the grill in a few minutes. Every December our Christmas party theme is polyester and cheese – wear polyester, bring cheese – and we wind up with a dining room table practically buckling under the weight of all the dairy products. Besides chunks of cheese, cheese balls and baked brie, there’s usually a batch or two of homemade cheese crackers and maybe some feta marinated in garlicky olive oil. This year I’ll splint spears of asparagus with long chunks of queso fresco, held in place with a piece of tacky prosciutto, which holds everything tightly in place as it cooks.

Wrapping asparagus 12 Days: Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto

All three components of these little tasties go well with balsamic – a dribble of balsamic reduction is never a bad idea (not too much if you’re eating with your fingers), or for something really indulgent, mix up a batch of hollandaise – maybe with pepper and Pecorino? Thick enough for dipping, or dribbling overtop if these wind up on a platter for brunch.

Asparagus w Prosciutto Cheese 2 12 Days: Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto

London Drugs has offered up prizes for our holiday series, and so I browsed the kitchen appliances aisle for some things Santa might bring those of us who like to cook. An indoor grill would work well for these – I don’t have one, but if you’re not the type to pull on your boots and trudge outside to fire up the snowy barbecue, it might be worth adding to your wish list.

Asparagus w Prosciutto Cheese 3 12 Days: Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto

Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto

1 bunch thick asparagus
1 pkg. Queso Fresco (I used Fresk-O white fresh semi-firm cheese, made in Alberta)
1 pkg. thinly sliced prosciutto

balsamic reduction or Hollandaise, for serving (optional)

Preheat the grill to medium-high.

Snap the tough ends of the asparagus off where they naturally break. (This isn’t necessary when using Edgar Farms asparagus, as they harvest theirs by hand.) Cut the Queso Fresco into 1/4-1/3″ thick slices and place one piece up against each asparagus stalk; wrap a single (or half) slice of prosciutto around it to hold it on.

Grill for 3-4 minutes, turning as necessary, until the asparagus is charred, the prosciutto is crisp on the edges and shrinks tighter around the cheese and asparagus, and the cheese is oozing a bit out each end. Serve immediately.

Pecorino & Pepper Hollandaise

1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
juice of half a lemon (about 1 1/2 Tbsp.)
1/2 cup butter
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese

Place the egg yolk and lemon juice in a blender or food processor and pulse to combine. Put the butter into a small saucepan or Pyrex measuring cup and heat on the stovetop or in the microwave until melted and hot. With the motor running, slowly pour the butter into the blender through the feed tube (or hole in the lid) until it’s all incorporated and the mixture is slightly thick. Grind in some black pepper, add the cheese and pulse to combine.

Serve soon (it will solidify once refrigerated). Makes about 1 cup.

pixel 12 Days: Grilled Asparagus with Queso Fresco & Prosciutto
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November 13 2013 | appetizers and veg and vegetarian | 22 Comments »

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