Greek Yogurt recipe Popsicles




Ingredients

  • 3 cups Greek Yogurt (my favorite is Fage)
  • 1/2-3/4 cup raw honey, depending on sweetness desired
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups fruit of choice


Directions

  • In a bowl, combine yogurt and honey, stirring to mix. Fold in fruit of choice. Spoon into popsicle molds and freeze 3-6 hours. Enjoy!




Goulash

,

Ingredients
  • 2 lbs. beef chuck, trimmed and cut into 2-in. cubes 
  • -1/2-3/4 c. red wine
  • -pinch tarragon, optional
  • -1 sm. onion, finely diced 
  • -1/2 Hungarian or red bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
  • -1 Tbsp. butter + 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil, or the equivalent amount of lard/bacon grease
  • -2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • -2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • -1 c. broth 
  • -2 (heaping) tsp. good quality sweet Hungarian paprika
  • -1 tsp. dried marjoram
  • -1/2 tsp. caraway seed, preferably ground
  • -8 whole juniper berries, optional
  • -salt and pepper, to taste 
  • -dash of cayenne pepper or hot Hungarian paprika

Directions
  • 1. Put the meat in a bowl, pour over the wine, add the tarragon (if using), and marinate while you prepare the other ingredients.
  • 2. Heat the butter and oil over medium heat in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Add the onions and red pepper, season with black pepper, and sweat until the onions are translucent.
  • 3. Add the tomato paste and cook 60 seconds, stirring to prevent burning.
  • 4. Next, add the meat, leaving the marinade behind in the bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. When the meat begins to color, lower the heat and stir in the paprika. You must stir constantly to avoid burning the paprika (which releases a bitter flavor). To be safe, you can add a splash of broth to the pot when you incorporate the paprika.
  • 5. Add the caraway, garlic, marjoram, hot pepper, and juniper berries and pour in the remaining broth. Cover.
  • 6. Reduce heat to a simmer and braise for at least 1 hr. and up to 3 hrs., depending on the toughness of your meat. Uncover for the last 30 minutes to thicken the sauce. Adjust for salt, pepper, and spiciness, and serve over your favorite starch.


Honey Oatmeal Bread



Ingredients
  • -3/4 c. water
  • -1/4 c. honey
  • -2 Tbsp. butter
  • -3 c. all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting (can substitute up to 1 c. whole wheat flour)
  • -1/4 c. quick-cooking oats, plus more for sprinkling on top
  • -1 tsp. salt
  • -1 (1/4 oz.) package active dry yeast
  • -2 eggs, divided
  • -1 Tbsp. water

Directions
  • 1. Heat the 3/4 cup water, honey, and butter in small saucepan on low heat until very warm (ideally 120-130F).
  • 2. Place flour, oats, salt and yeast in mixer bowl. Mix on low speed 15 seconds or until combined.
  • 3. Using dough hooks, gradually mix in honey-butter mixture. After one minute, add ONE whole egg and mix one minute longer.
  • 4. Continue mixing 2 minutes more, or until dough clings to hook and cleans side of bowl. Mix 2 minutes longer until dough is smooth, elastic, and all ingredients are thoroughly incorporated.
  • 5. Using a spatula, scrape any dough clinging to the sides of the bowl. Shape the dough into a round with the spatula.  Cover bowl with a damp towel (not terry cloth) or plastic wrap.
  • 6. Let rise in warm, draft-free place about 1 hour, or until nearly doubled. The dough is ready when you press two fingers into it, and it holds the indentation (see below).
  • 7. Gently punch down dough. With a rolling pin, roll out into a rectangle on a floured cutting board or counter top. Roll up from the short end like a jelly roll and tuck the ends under.
  • 8. Place loaf seam side down in a greased loaf pan. Separate the remaining egg, and whisk the white with remaining tablespoon water. Brush top of loaf with egg-white mixture, then sprinkle with oatmeal. Cover again with towel or plastic wrap and let rise 15-20 min. in pan.
  • 9. Bake at 375F for 40 minutes. Remove from pan immediately and cool on wire rack.




Easy Rhubarb Custard Cake


Yellow cake:
  • -1 1/4 (scant) c. all-purpose flour
  • -1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • -1/2 tsp. salt
  • -3/4 c. sugar
  • -1/4 c. oil
  • -1 egg
  • -2/3 c. milk
  • -1 tsp. vanilla extract


Fruit & custard layer:
  • -2 c. chopped rhubarb (about 3 large stalks)
  • -1/2 c. sugar
  • -1 c. whipping cream

Directions
  • 1.  In a medium bowl, toss rhubarb with the 1/2 cup sugar.  Set aside.  Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease and flour an 8-in. round baking pan or large glass/ceramic baking dish.
  • 2.  Prepare cake batter: whisk together flour, salt, sugar, and baking powder in a medium bowl.  In a larger bowl, mix eggs, vanilla extract, oil, and milk.  Slowly mix dry ingredients into wet until thoroughly combined.
  • 3.  Pour cake batter into prepared pan.  Scatter chopped rhubarb and juices evenly across the top.  Pour the cream over top.
  • 4.  Bake 55-60 min. at 350F until cake springs back when touched.
  • Best served the next day, but good luck waiting. You can double this recipe and make it in a 13×9-in. pan.



Spicy Black Bean & Pumpkin Soup with Crispy Sweet Potato Croûtes


Ingredients


  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, minced
  • 2 tsp adobo sauce
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, or more to taste
  • 3 15 oz cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup canned tomatoes, draine
  • 1 16 oz can pumpkin purée, about 1 1/2 cups
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 1/2 cup dry sherry
  • 3 tbsp sherry vinegar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 avocado, peeled, pitted, and diced
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt or sour cream, for garnish
  • Chipotle hot sauce



Sweet Potato Croûtes: 

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1/4 tsp chipotle chile powder 
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper



Directions

  • Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan set over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the minced garlic cloves, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, cumin, cayenne and cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds. Add in the drained beans, tomatoes, pumpkin purée, dry sherry and broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, and simmer uncovered for 15-20 minutes, or until it's thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. 
  • Meanwhile, while the soup is simmering, start to prepare the sweet potato croutons. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the cubes of sweet potato, a generous pinch of kosher salt and the chile powder. Stir to coat the sweet potato and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, or until crisp and browned on the bottom. Stir the potatoes and brown the other side for another 2 to 3 minutes. Repeat until all sides of the sweet potato cubes are crisp and browned, then drain on paper towel, season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside.
  • Once the soup is cooked through, purée the mixture using an immersion blender or by transferring the soup into a blender, and process in batches. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve the Spicy Black Bean & Pumpkin Soup in warmed bowls and garnish with Sweet Potato Croutons, diced avocado, yogurt and a drizzle of chipotle hot sauce. Hay Caramba!

Key Lime Pie


Crust:

  • 1 1/3 cup crushed graham crackers
  • 8 tbsp butter
  • ¼ cup brown sugar


Filling:

  • ½ cup freshly-squeezed key lime juice
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk


Meringue: (optional)

  • 10 egg whites
  • ¼ cup powder sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract


Preheat over to 400°F. Combine the graham cracker crumbs, butter, and brown sugar in a mixing bowl. Press gently into 9 inch pie plate and bake for 10 minutes in the oven, or until lightly brown. Take the crust out to cool slightly. 
Meanwhile, beat 4 egg yolks for 3 or 4 minutes until their color turns pale yellow. While beating, slowly drizzle in the sweetened condensed milk. Once incorporated, whisk in the lime juice and set aside. 
For the Meringue: In another bowl whip egg whites to soft peaks, then begin slowly beating in powdered sugar and vanilla until the egg whites have formed stiff peaks. Fold one tablespoon of the beaten egg whites into the key lime custard mixture. This will lighten up the filling and help the custard set. 
Pour the key lime mixture into the pie crust then gently mound the meringue on top of the custard filling. Bake in the same 400°F oven for about 10 minutes, or until the peaks of the meringue turn dark brown. Cool for one hour before chilling in the refrigerator for another hour before serving. Serve chilled with a curl of lime zest and a slice of lime on each plate.

Luscious Lemony Beurre Blanc Sauce


Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp shallots, very finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1½ tbsp dry Vermouth
  • 1½ tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • ½ cup whipping cream
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • salt and white pepper to taste


Directions
  • Combine shallots, vinegar, Vermouth and lemon juice in a small saucepan. Cook over high heat until most of the liquid has evaporated 1-2 minutes. Add cream and cook over medium heat and reduce until thickened. Remove from the heat, cover and set aside until required. When you're ready, gently reheat the mixture, add the butter, salt and white pepper, and whisk until the butter has melted. Add any herbs you'd like to use (tarragon, chives or dill) and combine gently just prior to serving. Spoon a small portion of Beurre Blanc onto each warmed serving plate and place the grilled fish or vegetables on top. Garnishing the final dish with microgreens or a sprig of the herb used in the sauce is a nice finishing touch.



Crisp Pan-Seared Salmon 
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 6-ounce centre cut salmon filets, at least 1" thick or more
  • Maldon Salt
  • Pepper, fresh ground

Directions
  • Season the salmon on both sides with salt and pepper. Place a sauté pan over high heat. When a drop of water skittles on the surface, add the oil. Tilt the pan to coat the bottom evenly and heat the oil until almost smoking about 30 seconds. Sear each salmon filet skinned side up until it's golden brown about 4 minutes. Flip the salmon over, lower the heat to moderate and sear until just cooked, about 3-4 minutes longer. 
  • To serve, spoon some beurre blanc on a warmed dinner plate. Place a row of sauteed fingerling potatoes or roasted asparagus in the middle of the plate, then place a pan-seared salmon filet on top. Garnish with micro greens or whole chives if you wish. Repeat with each place setting. Serving immediately. Yum-yum.




Crustless Cheese and Spinach Pie



Ingredients
  • 2 bunches of fresh spinach, cooked and chopped (or frozen spinach)
  • 2 cups cottage cheese
  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • 6 tbsp flour
  • 1 lb cheddar cheese, grated (or any other 'melty' cheese you like)
  • 4 tbsp green onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp butter
  • salt and pepper to taste


Directions
  • Centre an oven rack and preheat oven to 375°. Generously butter a 9" pie plate or individual ramekins, and set aside. Mix the spinach, cottage cheese, eggs, flour, cheddar cheese and green onions in a large bowl, season with salt and pepper. Stir well to thoroughly combine. Transfer the mixture into the prepared pie plate or ramekins and place in the oven. Bake 50-60 minutes or until set and nicely brown — I use a knife to test for 'done-ness'. Cool a minute or two before serving. 




Roasted Red Pepper, Tomato and Anchovy Linguine



Ingredients
  • 1 bunch fresh broccoli
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 8 anchovies, chopped fine
  • 1/2 tsp dried red chili flakes
  • 2 cups Pacific Foods Organic Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup*
  • 1 package dried linguine, spaghettini or tagliatelle pasta
  • 1 cup fresh grated parmesan or pecorino
  • italian parsley or basil for garnish

Directions
  • Detach the broccoli florets from the stalks, discard the stalks, and finely chop the florets. Put the oil in a sauté pan and over medium-high heat, add the florets, anchovies and red chili flakes. Cook, stirring and mashing the florets and anchovies with the back of a wooden spoon, until they are cooked through and dissolve into a paste, about 10-15 minutes. 
  • Add the roasted red pepper and tomato soup, turn the heat down to medium and stir to combine.
  • Bring a large pot of water to boil for the pasta. Cook according to the directions, then drain in a colander, and return to the pot. Combine the sauce with the cooked pasta and warm through. 
  • Serve in warmed pasta bowls and garnish with sprig or sprinkle of fresh parsley, and grated cheese on the side. Magnifico!




Homemade Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Sauce 
  • 2 heads of garlic
  • 1 lb plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise 
  • 1 lb red peppers
  • 3 tbsp cream
  • 2 tsp olive oil

Directions
  • Preheat oven to 375°. Cut off and discard the top quarter of the garlic and wrap the remainder in foil. Arrange the tomatoes, cut side up, on a foil-lined baking pan and sprinkle lightly with salt. Add the whole bell peppers and garlic to the pan and roast together for 1 hour.
  • Transfer the pepper to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap and let stand 1/2 hour. When cool enough to handle, peel the peppers, discarding stem and seeds, and transfer to a food processor and blend with the tomatoes. Unwrap the garlic and squeeze the roasted cloves from the skin into the processor, and purée until smooth. Add cream and mix to combine. This can be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. Makes 1 1/2 cups. 



Baked Rice Pudding




Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup Arborio Rice
  • 4 cups whole milk, or cream
  • 6 tbsp white sugar
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 tsp cinamon
  • 1 tbsp vanilla

Directions
  • Preheat oven to 250°. Mix the rice, milk (or cream), sugar, butter, vanilla and lemon together in a bowl and then pour mixture into a greased 2-quart baking dish. Bake for 2 hours, until golden brown on top. Sprinkle with some cinnamon and serve piping hot!



Turkey & Mushroom Meatloaf


Ingredients 
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 onions, peeled and finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 8 oz. cremini or white button mushrooms, cleaned and finely chopped
  • 2 lb ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 156 ml can tomato paste
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp dried thyme and oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup ketchup

Directions
  • Preheat oven to 350°. In a heavy skillet over medium-high heat, add oil and onions, and sauté until they are golden brown, about 6-8 minutes. Add the garlic and mushrooms and continue to sauté until all the liquid has evaporate and the mushrooms have browned slightly.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the turkey, milk, breadcrumbs, beaten eggs, tomato paste, worcestershire sauce, thyme, oregano and mushroom mixture. Season well with salt and pepper, and combine thoroughly. 
  • Press the mixture into a loaf pan and spread the ketchup over the top. Bake until lightly browned on top and firm to the touch, about 60-75 minutes, or when a thermometer reads 165° in the thickest part. I would serve this with another comfort food, mashed potatoes, a small mixed green salad, and an old film on the TV.



Chicken Pot Pie with Puff Pastry


Ingredients

  • 1 sheet frozen Puff Pastry
, thawed
  • 5 tbsp all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

  • 5 tbsp unsalted butter

  • 3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces

  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
 
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced into 1/2" pieces
  • 15 pearl onions
  • 12 oz cremini mushrooms, stems trimmed
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup Madeira or Cognac
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup whole milk or cream

  • 5 cups cooked chicken, torn into bite-sized pieces

  • 1 cup frozen green peas

  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
 
  • 2 tbsp herbes de provence
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 3 tsp coarse salt

  • 1 tsp freshly ground pepper
 


Egg wash:
  • 1 large egg

  • 2 tbsp milk


Directions
  • Preheat oven to 400°F.
  • In a large heavy-bottom pot, melt 5 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add potatoes and carrots. Cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes and carrots are fork-tender, about 10 to 12 minutes. 
  • Meanwhile, trim the bottoms off the pearl onions and blanch in a small pot of boiling water, about 3-4 minutes. Rinse with cold water, remove outer skin, and set aside. 
  • Add mushrooms, celery and garlic to the potato mixture, and cook until the mushrooms are heated through. Add Madeira, or cognac, and cook for 2 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring to thicken, about 2-3 minutes. Pour in chicken stock, milk and pearl onions. Bring to a simmer; cook until thick and bubbly, stirring constantly, 2 to 3 minutes. Add some more flour if you like a thicker 'gravy'. Stir in chicken, peas, parsley, thyme, herbes de provence and cayenne. Taste and season generously with salt and pepper, to taste. Transfer filling to your deep-dish pie plate or individual ramekins. Transfer to a rack to cool slightly, about 10 minutes. 
  • On a lightly floured surface, rollout the puff pastry about 2" larger than the top of the baking dish. Place over the dish and trim leaving a 1/2" overhang, reserving excess pastry. Press overhang into and over edge. With a fork, whisk egg and milk; brush over pastry. Use excess pastry to cut out shapes and place on top. Brush egg mixture over pastry. Cut 5 or 6 steam vents into the top of the pastry using a small sharp knife.
  • Transfer casserole to a parchment-lined baking sheet, to catch any boil-over. Bake 30-40 minutes until pastry is golden brown. Cover the edges loosely with aluminum foil to prevent the crust edges from burning, if necessary. Serve hot. 



Baked Spinach Ricotta Gnudi




Ingredients
  • 1 quantity of Béchamel sauce (recipe follows)
  • 2 cups tomato sauce 
  • 1 lb frozen chopped spinach (3 300g packages)
  • 8 oz fresh ricotta cheese (1 330g tub)
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper
  • Fresh basil, chopped for garnish
  • Butter for greasing baking dish
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour


Directions
  • Thaw the frozen spinach and squeeze out as much water as you can. In a medium bowl, combine the spinach, ricotta cheese, eggs, half the Parmesan cheese and a grating of nutmeg, to taste. Season with salt and pepper, and mix with a wooden spoon to make a soft mass. Set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. While the oven is preheating, prepare the béchamel sauce (see below). Liberally butter a 9"x12" baking dish. Spoon a little of the béchamel sauce onto the bottom of the dish to just cover it.
  • Put the flour on to a flat plate and pat your hands in the flour. Using your hands, form dumplings the size of a small egg, slightly elongated (about 1½ inches long by 3/4 inches wide). Dust them very lightly in the flour and put them onto the béchamel in neat rows. 
  • Cover with the remaining béchamel. Splash the surface with the tomato sauce and sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until the top is bubbling and lightly golden. Serve hot in warmed bowls, with a generous sprinkling of basil on each serving.



Béchamel Sauce (Bechiamella)

  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 7 tbsp unsalted butter
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • Salt and white pepper
  • Freshly grated nutmeg


Directions
  • Heat the milk in a saucepan. In a separate medium saucepan, melt the butter, and then add the flour. Stir with a wooden spoon and cook for a minute or two until it is lightly golden. Add a ladleful of the warm milk and stir well so it does not form lumps. Continue adding the milk in ladlefuls and stirring constantly until all the milk has been incorporated. Season with salt and pepper, and a generous grating of nutmeg. Continue cooking and stirring on low heat for another 10 minutes to thicken. It should be very smooth. Remove from the heat. Just before using, give it a good whisking. 



Corn fritter


ingredients:
  • 2 shallots
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 candlenuts
  • 1/2 tbsp whole white pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 4 corn, about 1,2 kg (net weight after grated and peeled is 500 g)
  • 4 red chilies, sliced finely
  • 4 Thai bird's eye chilies, sliced finely
  • 10 kaffir lime leaves, sliced finely
  • 1 spring onion, chopped
  • 1 stalk Chinese celery, chopped
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tbsp tapioca starch
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup cooking oil, for pan-frying

directions:
  • Grind shallot, garlic, candlenuts, pepper, salt and sugar into fine paste.
  • Grate 3 cobs of corn using coarse grater. Peel the kernels off the remaining cob. Put everything in a big bowl.
  • Combine the rest of the ingredients into the corn. Mix well with a spoon.
  • Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Drop spoonfuls of batter into hot oil and fry for three minutes, till golden brown, both sides.
  • Serve warm with sweet chili sauce.



Blushing Raspberry Pancakes


for delicious Pancakes:

  • -two eggs
  • -1 1/2 c. milk
  • -1 1/2 c. flour
  • -1 tsp. baking powder
  • -1 tsp. baking soda
  • -3 oz. red raspberries, frozen (do not thaw)
  • -1 tsp white vinegar
  • -1/4 c. melted salted butter


for raspberry syrup:

  • -3 oz. red raspberries 
  • -1/4 c. sugar
  • -1/4 c. water
  • -1/4 c. maple-flavored pancake syrup

Directions
  • 1. Whisk together all pancake ingredients except raspberries, butter, and vinegar. Add vinegar and whisk quickly. Allow to sit for one minute.
  • 2. Quickly whisk in butter, then fold in the frozen raspberries.
  • 3. While your batter hangs loose, throw your additional raspberries in a small saucepan together with the sugar and water. Allow to boil for 4-5 min. until the raspberries have broken down and the sauce has thickened. Remove from heat and add the syrup. Mix well with a fork and force through a sieve into a small bowl. It may take some time for the sauce to drip through.
  • 4. Heat a large skillet, add a small amount of butter or veg oil., and cook pancakes (flipping midway) until lightly brown on both sides.


Serve with butter and raspberry syrup.



Ragu di Carne (Bolognese Meat Sauce)


Ingredients

  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped carrots
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, thickly sliced
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 2 ounces finely diced prosciutto
  • 1/4 pound ground veal
  • 1/4 pound ground lamb
  • 1/4 pound ground beef
  • 1/3 cup red wine
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups chicken or beef stock
  • salt and pepper to taste


Directions

  • 1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan on high heat until sizzling, about two minutes. Add the red pepper flakes, celery, carrots, onion, garlic, bay leaf, sage and basil and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook ten minutes more, stirring occasionally.
  • 2. Raise the heat to high, add the prosciutto, veal, lamb and beef and cook, stirring constantly, for two minutes. Add the wine, reduce the heat to medium and let it cook until almost evaporated, about five minutes. Raise the heat to high, add the tomato sauce, tomato paste and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 45 minutes, stirring twice.
  • 3. If you like the sauce thicker, remove the cover during the last 15 minutes of cooking. Taste for salt and pepper.




Pastitsio – Baked Pasta with Meat and Bechamel Topping


Meat sauce (enough for casserole + leftovers):
  • -1 large onion, chopped
  • -3 garlic cloves, minced
  • -1 lb. lean ground meat (I used half 90/10 beef, half ground pork. Meatloaf mix or all beef would also be fine)
  • -1 (16 oz.) can diced tomatoes with juice
  • -1/2 can tomato paste (about 2 Tbsp.)
  • -1/4 c. chopped pitted kalamata olives
  • -1 tsp. salt (add more to taste)
  • -1/2 tsp. ground black pepper (or to taste)
  • -2 tsp. dried oregano, crumbled
  • -3 bay leaves
  • -1/2 c. red wine
  • -1 cinnamon stick, or 1/3 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • -2 springs fresh thyme, stemmed, or 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
  • -1 anchovy, minced (optional, but good)
  • -3 whole cloves (in a tea ball/sachet), or 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
  • -1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • -1 tsp. soy sauce
  • -2 tsp. brown sugar
  • -olive oil


Pasta:
  • -1 lb. rigatoni or penne pasta
  • -6 Tbsp. melted butter
  • -2 c. whole milk
  • -2 eggs, beaten
  • -1/2 c. grated Parmesan (or Romano) cheese


Bechamel sauce:
  • -6 Tbsp. butter
  • -1/3 c. flour
  • -4 c. milk
  • -1 tsp. salt
  • -1/8 tsp. pepper (preferably white)
  • -1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • -3 eggs


For scattering:
  • -1/2 lb. grated Parmesan (or Romano) cheese, divided
  • 1. Meat Sauce: In a large pot, saute onion until in olive oil until lightly browned; add garlic and meat and brown. Add remaining meat sauce ingredients and simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. (Or, pour sauce into crock pot and cook on low 6-10) hrs. Remove and discard cloves, cinnamon stick, and bay leaves. If sauce looks watery, ladle out a bit of the juice and discard. Puree sauce lightly with a stick blender, if desired.
  • 2. Pasta: Boil until barely al dente in well-salted water. Strain. In the empty pasta pot, melt butter. Remove from heat, add pasta, milk, 1/2 c. cheese, and eggs. Gently stir to coat and set aside. Preheat oven to 350F.
  • 3. Bechamel sauce: melt butter over medium heat in a saucepan. Whisk in flour until smooth. Cook, whisking for 2 minutes. Gradually add in 4 c. milk, stirring, until thickened (it will look thin for a while, but keep going). Lower heat, add salt, pepper and nutmeg. Remove from heat.
  • 4. In a large bowl, beat 3 eggs. VERY slowly add cupfulls of cream sauce to eggs. Stir thoroughly so eggs don’t curdle. A second pair of hands helps a lot at this stage.
  • 5. Butter or oil a 13×9-in. baking pan.
  • 6. Pour 1/2 of the noodle mixture over bottom of pan. Cover evenly with 2-3 c. of meat sauce (you will have leftovers; add only about as much as you would for lasagne—too much and your pastitsio might fall apart).
  • 7. Sprinkle 1/3 of the cheese over meat sauce. Add remaining pasta mixture, spreading evenly. Sprinkle another 1/3 of the cheese over top.
  • 8. Pour bechamel sauce evenly over entire casserole, leaving about 1/4-in. space to the top rim. You could have as much as 1/2 c. bechamel sauce left over.
  • 9. Top casserole with remaining cheese.
  • 10. Bake uncovered @ 350F until bechamel sauce sets and is lightly browned, approx. 1 hr. Cool at least 15 minutes before cutting.



Spicy tempeh and potatoes stir fry



ingredients:

  • 200 g tempeh, cut into small and thin slices
  • 3 / 500 g potatoes, cut into small and thin slices
  • 25 g sataw beans, or stinky beans
  • 30 g red chilies
  • 3 shallots
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 5 Indonesian salam leaves
  • 1 lemongrass, cut into half
  • 50 g palm sugar, or gula merah/gula melaka
  • 1 tsp / 5 g tamarind pulp
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp kecap manis
  • 1/4 cup cooking oil, for stir-frying
  • Cooking oil for deep frying tempeh and potatoes

directions:

  • Dilute gula merah and tamarind pulp in water. Set aside for later use.
  • Deep fry potato slices and tempeh chips till golden and crunchy.
  • Grind chilies, garlic, shallots and salt in a mortar and pestle to fine paste.
  • Heat cooking oil in a wok and stir-fry stinky beans over medium heat for 30 seconds of less.
  • Add chili paste, salam leaves and lemongrass into the wok. Stir-fry till the chili paste turns slightly darker, about one minute.
  • Pour sugar and tamarind mixture into the wok. Add kecap manis. Simmer for 2 minutes, keep stirring.
  • Add tempeh and potato chips into the wok. Stir well.
  • Serve with warm rice.




Baked Potato Latkes


  • 2 lb Yukon gold potatoes 
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup oat flour 
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper – to taste
  • olive oil for brushing

  • 1. Peel and shred the potatoes. Place them into a colander and thoroughly rinse with cold water. Leave to drain in the colander, while peeling and shredding the onion.
  • 2. Shake the water excess off the potatoes as much as possible and transfer them into a large bowl. Add in shredded onion, egg, flour, salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly.
  • 3. Squeeze the mixture between your fingers, one small portion at a time, and try to make it as dry as possible. Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C).
  • 4. Thoroughly grease a muffin pan(s) with olive oil. Distribute the potato mixture between muffin holes, firmly pressing it into the bottom to achieve a regular pancake thickness. Brush with olive oil and bake for 40 minutes. Let cool slightly before removing pancakes from the holes.
  • 5. Serve with sour cream/Greek yogurt and Beet-Avocado salad.
  • 6. If you don’t have a muffin pan, preheat oven to 425 F (220 C). Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and lightly grease it with olive oil. Form 12 pancakes with your hands, placing them on the sheet as you go. Press with a spoon to flatten them and brush with olive oil. Bake for 12 minutes, flip and brush the other side with oil as well. Bake for another 8 minutes, flipping one more time and bake for additional 5 minutes.


Beet Salad with Avocado Mayonnaise

  • 4 small to medium beet roots
  • 2 ripe but firm avocados
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper – to taste
  • 1 garlic clove – minced
  • about 1/3 cup minced parsley and dill
  • handful walnuts – chopped

  • 1. Bake, boil or steam the beets until fully cooked. Cool, peel and shred them, placing into a large mixing bowl.
  • 2. In a separate bowl, mash flesh of 1 avocado with a fork. Squeeze the juice of 1/2 lemon over it. Add olive oil, mustard, salt and pepper and mix thoroughly.
  • 3. Add the avocado ‘mayo’ into the shredded beets, along with the garlic, herbs and walnuts. Mix well to incorporate. Adjust salt and pepper.
  • 4. Right before serving, cut another avocado into cubes, squeeze the juice of the remaining 1/2 lemon over it and add to the salad.



Sprouted Spelt Pancakes


for the pancakes

  • 1 cup sourdough starter
  • 1 1/2 cup warm purified water
  • 2 1/2 cups spelt flour (I used sprouted spelt)
  • 2/3 cup almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons grape seed oil (or other vegetable oil), plus more for frying the pancakes


for the coconut creme 

  • 1/2 cup full fat canned coconut milk
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


to make the pancakes and coconut creme

  • 1. In a large bowl, mix together the starter, water and flour. Cover and leave overnight.
  • 2. Next morning whisk in the rest of the ingredients. Heat up about 1/2 tablespoon of oil in your pan at the medium heat.
  • 3. Place the coconut milk in the freezer to thicken.
  • 3. Add about 1/4 cup of batter per pancake to an oiled pan. Cook for about a minute, until the batter begins bubbling throughout and the underside becomes golden.
  • 4. Flip and fry the other side for 30 seconds to a minute, until golden. Repeat with the rest of the batter.
  • 5. When all the batter is used up, take the coconut milk out of the freezer. Mix in the honey and vanilla until smooth. If the milk began to freeze, give it a quick whirl in a blender, along with the honey and vanilla.
  • 6. Serve the pancakes with coconut creme and fresh berries or any other toppings / sides you like.


Chocolate wafers



ingredients:

  • 190 g flour
  • 67 g cocoa powder, Dutch-processed
  • 220 g sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 210 g butter, softened
  • 3 tbsp whole milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

directions:

  • Combine flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt and baking soda in a food processor. Pulse for a couple of seconds until all ingredients mixed well.
  • Add butter and process until the dough is slightly crumbly.
  • Pour vanilla extract and milk into food processor when the blade still running, until the dough held together around the blades or side of bowl.
  • Get the dough off the food processor onto a working surface.
  • Knead for a bit until all ingredients are evenly distributed.
  • Form dough into a log with 3-5 cm in diameter. Fold the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
  • The dough will keep well for up to 3 days.
  • Preheat oven to 185 degree celsius.
  • Cut dough into 0.5 cm thickness round discs.
  • Arrange on lightly greased baking paper.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 12-15 minutes.
  • Let cool on pan. If the cookies are not as crunchy when cooled, bake them again in oven for 3-5 minutes.



Chocolate chip cookies


ingredients:
  • 238 g cake flour
  • 238 g bread flour
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 280 g unsalted butter, softened
  • 280 g light brown sugar
  • 224 g granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp natural vanilla extract
  • 566 g bittersweet chocolate disks or feves, at least 60 pc cacao content
  • Sea salt, for sprinkling

directions:
  • Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl.
  • Combine sugars and butter in a mixer bowl. Beat with paddle attachment on medium speed until very light, about 5 minutes.
  • Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Stir in vanilla extract.
  • Reduce speed to low and add dry ingredients. Mix until just combined, about 5 seconds.
  • Add chocolate pieces and mix well and quickly by hand.
  • Press a piece of plastic wrap on the dough and refrigerate for 24-36 hours.
  • To bake
  • Preheat oven to 175 degree celsius. Line cookie sheet with lightly oiled parchment paper.
  • Scoop about 80-100 g of dough onto baking sheet. Sprinkle salts on top of them.
  • Bake until golden brown, about 18-20 minutes. The middle part of cookies will still be soft, but will harden on standing. Leave to cool for about 10-15 minutes.
  • Continue with the rest of the dough or refrigerate for later baking.
  • Store baked cookies in airtight containers when completely cooled.