Frittata with roasted peppers, potatoes and zucchini

Frittata

Making this up on Sunday proved to be very handy — it’s a very busy work week for me with the end of the quarter and school year happening, so I wanted to make sure whatever the main dish was was something I could make and store for a bit in the fridge or freezer. This turned out to be perfect for that, using potatoes, zucchini and parsley from my basket along with some other items. There are a slew of such recipes out there — I ended up using this one, only substituting roasted red peppers for the poblano chiles. Worked my way through a good amount of it already and should polish off the rest tonight or tomorrow.

A couple of new recipes tried

So a little catching up here — over the weekend, I did something which I thought I had tried before but apparently not, a zucchini, fennel and white bean pasta:

Zucchini, fennel and white bean pasta

Quite delicious — the recipe is here, and as always I removed the salt (seeing as the goat cheese would add enough as it stood).

The other day, wanting something a little lighter, I settled on a snow pea and carrot salad with miso-tamari dressing:

Snow pea and carrot salad with miso-tamari dressing

Now this to me was the real winner, good as the pasta was — a wonderful blend of flavors and textures all around, and a very simple recipe at that. More stuff to come later in the week…

Orzo salad with radish and fennel

Orzo salad

This was kinda nice to find, a good way to use a variety of different things I had around at once. Here’s the recipe — a great dish for the hotter days.

Puree of turnip soup

Puree of turnip soup

Radishes I’m good with but turnips sometimes leave me uninspired. But a scrounge last night turned up this recipe, so a little experimenting later and this was the result, plus another batch for another night. The garnish in this case was some cayenne pepper to add extra bite as well as some roasted seaweed. Not bad, really!

Two recent cooking experiments

Of sorts — the other day, unsure of what to do with a green panther cauliflower I had, I scrounged up this recipe for a spicy/strong cauliflower pasta. Did a couple of adaptations — no anchovies, for a start — but the end result was mighty fine, and really, whatever the sauce/seasonings you want to be is what counts. Going whole wheat with the pasta never hurts either:

Cauliflower pasta

Last night, meantime, having caught up on a variety of work and at a slightly loose end, I wanted to bake something to use up some ingredients and decided to go the savory muffin route. I turned up a recipe for something called fabulous fargozas — and while I suspect the name is some random thing dreamed up by someone, it is pretty nice. Had no mozzarella to hand so the only cheese was the parmesan, but it did work — also used almond milk instead of the real thing:

Fargozas!

Now to ponder what next…

Udon with tofu, bok choy, tomato and more…

Udon with bok choy, tomato, tofu, etc.

It’s been a while — far too long, really! — since I put up something I’ve cooked, and tonight was time to rectify that. Having picked up my latest basket and seen some baby bok choy, I wanted to do something with that, and a scrounge online turned up this really fantastic recipe — seriously, check it all out, lots of photos, plenty of detail, the works.

My big change here was to use udon rather than the thick rice noodle indicated, in that no such noodle as described was available in my local Japanese market (I could have easily have missed it). Other than that I went at it, adjusting portion sizes down for a single-person dish. (I used some minced ginger I had to hand as well rather than julienning, FWIW.)

Quite delicious, very filling — give it a whirl!

White bean fennel soup

White bean and fennel soup

Made this up last week and have been dipping into batches since. Great stuff, and as I love fennel I couldn’t ask for more. The recipe came from one of my CSA mailouts:

• 1 large onion, chopped
• 1 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 5 cups reduced sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth
• 1 (15 ounce) can white kidney or cannelini beans, rinsed and drained
• 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
• 1 teaspoon dried thyme
• 1/4 teaspoon pepper
• 1 bay leaf
• 3 cups shredded fresh spinach

In a large saucepan, saute onion and fennel in oil until tender. Add the broth, beans, tomatoes, thyme, pepper and bay leaf; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until fennel is tender. Discard bay leaf. Add spinach; cook 3-4 minutes longer or until spinach is wilted.

Roquefort pear salad

Roquefort pear salad

So this was a fun recipe to try — prepared for a monthly get-together with friends; I seem to have become the ‘salad guy’ of late but I don’t mind at all, as this almost always gives me a chance to use more of my CSA basket than I might normally.

I received the recipe via my CSA newsletter — a couple of variations: I didn’t add any salt (the Roquefort has enough already!) and instead of candying the pecans I simply bought some prepared but unsalted fragments. Meanwhile I only used one tablespoon of sherry vinegar and smaller amounts of the sugar and mustard in the dressing. While this reduced the full taste range of the dish on the one hand, on the other I felt it was a better balance as well as being a bit healthier.

• 1 head leaf lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces
• 3 pears – peeled, cored and chopped
• 5 ounces Roquefort cheese, crumbled
• 1 avocado – peeled, pitted, and diced
• 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
• 1/4 cup white sugar
• 1/2 cup pecans
• 1/3 cup olive oil
• 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
• 1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar
• 1 1/2 teaspoons prepared mustard
• 1 clove garlic, chopped
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• fresh ground black pepper to taste

1. In a skillet over medium heat, stir 1/4 cup of sugar together with the pecans. Continue stirring gently until sugar has melted and caramelized the pecans. Carefully transfer nuts onto waxed paper. Allow to cool, and break into pieces.
2. For the dressing, blend oil, vinegar, 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar, mustard, chopped garlic, salt, and pepper.
3. In a large serving bowl, layer lettuce, pears, blue cheese, avocado, and green onions. Pour dressing over salad, sprinkle with pecans, and serve.

Honey roasted potatoes

Honey roasted potatoes

Roasting potatoes is an easy and common enough thing but the honey glaze suggested in the recipe following, which I received from my latest CSA mailout from who knows what source, was a very nice variant. Officially for red potatoes but hey, I just used what I had to hand. So:

• 1 pound red potatoes, quartered
• 2 tablespoons diced onion
• 2 tablespoons butter, melted
• 1 tablespoon honey
• 1 teaspoon dry mustard
• 1 pinch salt
• 1 pinch ground black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly coat an 11×7 inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

2. Place potatoes in a single layer in prepared dish, and top with onion. In a small bowl, combine melted butter, honey, mustard, salt and pepper; drizzle over potatoes and onion.

3. Bake in the preheated 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) oven for 35 minutes or until tender, stirring halfway through the cooking time.

Sweet potato and fennel soup

Sweet potato and fennel soup

Meantime, this is really what I was all about this week. The recipe itself is a fine one but I really wanted an excuse to finally test out a Christmas gift I was really excited about, this Bamix professional immersion blender. My old blender died a while back and I wanted to make the switch to a hand blender for ease and to not have to worry about shlepping things back and forth. Worked like a dream and damn if this wasn’t good. (And a little crispbread to go with never hurts.)