Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Lime Ginger Poppyseed Muffins

I don't have much time. Work is kicking my ever loving ass right now. But there is something that I have to say. Last night we slept with the windows open for the first time since...who the hell knows when, like last September or something like that. And, this morning I was woken up by what sounded like ten thousand birds, insects, jungle creatures all talking at the same time. It was like my bedroom was in a room, in a tree house, in the canopy level of the frigging rain forest for crying out loud. It was the most unmanageable mingling of nature sounds I've ever heard. It was 4:50 this morning. I don't know what to do, after being shut up in the house all ass biting cold winter with all the windows and doors shut against the cold I just can't bear the thought of closing the windows when it's nice out, but 4:50 is way the fuck to early to get up. My alarm is set for 5:25, so it's not too far off from when I usually get up, but I need that extra 35 minutes of sleep to not be a complete bitch. Seriously.

Ok - onto food. The other day I was going to make lemon poppy seed muffins and then I though, "hey, why does the lemon get all the glory? why can't a lime get in on some of that hot action?" Here is the result.

Lime Poppy Seed Muffins (low fat I think)
Makes 12

2 C all purpose flour
1/2 C sugar
2 Tbsp poppy seeds
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3 Tbsp applesauce
zest and juice from one lime
1 inch fresh ginger grated
1 C lowfat yogurt (I used greek style)
1 large egg, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 400

Combine first six ingredients in a medium bowl; make a well in center of mixture. Combine applesauce, zest, juice, ginger yogurt and egg; stir well. Add to dry ingredients, stir until just moist.

Spoon into greased muffin pan. Bake at 400 degrees for about 12-14 minutes.

Cool on wire rack.

Rating = Damn Good

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Vegan Datenut Bread | Make It Now

Yesterday as I was trying to get out of my pajamas, I got my foot caught in the pant leg. My leg went back and forth, back and forth; like a drunk person attempting to do that Roger Rabbit dance from the 90's where you grab one leg behind you and shake it back and forth with your hand. Except in this instance my pants were neither up nor down, just stuck in no mans land around mid thigh. This struggle finally ended with me falling face down with my stupid leg still tied up in the pant leg. I was alone in my room, but the human instinct to look around to see if anyone had just seen this display and utter lack of coordination caused me to whip my head around frantically to see if my actions had produced an audience of onlookers.

Anyway - remember a few months ago I attempted to veganize an old recipe that my Nana had for date nut bread. The bread came out great, but it lacked the dark rich color that my Nana's had. Over the weekend I tried again, making a few changes to the recipe, and this one was a complete success. Make it, it's that good.

Vegan Date Nut Bread | adapted from Nana's recipe
3/4 C chopped nuts (I used walnuts)
1 C chopped dates
3 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 C applesauce
3/4 C boiling water
2 EnerG egg replacers
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 C sugar
1 1/2 C flour

Preheat 350.

Combine nuts, dates, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Add applesauce and water and let stand 15 minutes. Stir to blend. Beat the EnerG egg replacer with vanilla, stir in the sugar and flour. Add the flour mixture to the date mixture. Pour into a greased loaf pan and bake for 1 hour.

Test for doneness around 50-55 minutes.

Rating = So Damn Good

Monday, April 20, 2009

Tuna Puttanesca | RR

I think everyone who reads this blog knows that I'm not the biggest Rachel Ray fan. I'm not. I just get tired when I watch her. Not tired like, "oh she's got so much energy, how does she do it"? More tired, like, "Jesus lady, take a breath, there is such a thing as comfortable silence every once and a while." I'm waiting for the day when her jaw just completely unhinges from her face. She just doesn't shut up, and her stupid little hee hee's just make me want to take my shoe off and throw it at the tv. That being said. I really have not had a bad outcome from her recipes, they serve a purpose, they are not haute cuisine, they are everyday food recipes that are quick, easy and tasty. This recipe was just that. Quick, Easy and yes, Tasty. It was perfect for Friday night during lent, or even if you just wanted to substitute fish for meat a few days a week. It did only take about 30 minutes start to finish and it was really tasty, and it made a ton of food so it can feed a crowd, or make dinner for a few nights out of the week.

Here is the recipe. LINK

Rating - Damn Good

If you make it, let me know if you liked it.

Also - I bought fresh ginger and candied lemon peel the other day. Got any suggestions for recipes to use them in?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Grilled Tempeh Skewers with Spicy Peanut Sauce

Yum. I got this recipe from one of my old VegNews magazines and I don't know why it took me so long to make it, because it was really really good. And, it was simple to put together. The skewers had tempeh, red onion, red pepper and nectarines, and I was shocked by how well the red onion and nectarine went together. I think I am going to have to try this flavor combination again, maybe a nectarine and red onion compote...I don't know. Have any of you ever used a recipe that called for nectarines and red onion together?

I feel like I don't have any funny stories to share with you. I feel a little lame. Let me see, let me see. Nope, I got nothin'. How is this possible? Oh, well, here's a little something, the other day CB pronounced that our house and I quote "smells like farts." I think there is something wrong with him because I have never thought our house smells like farts, well, except for the week I ate that pound of brussel sprouts in two days, maybe then, but since then, I don't seem to see/smell a problem. I'm blaming the cat, which may be possible because he is on thyroid medicine because he's old and needs a little help with his digestive system - so maybe it's the cat, and I'm that old woman who lives with 47 cats and can't smell them and they jump all over the counter and reek havoc and I'm oblivious. I don't think so though - I think CB was having a bad day and was just smelling his own bad attitude.

So - I left the recipe for this at home so I will post it later tonight when I get home. But, please do try this, it was wonderful.

Rating = Damn Good

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Barrel Fever | Bodegas Castano Solanera 2005

Last week I went to a wine tasting at Brix featuring the Spanish wines of importer Eric Solomon. All the wines were really good, but I was drawn more to this wine because of the smoky nose and juicy flavor. Robert Parker gave it 91 points, and Stephen Tanzer gave it 90. I'm not familiar with Stephen Tanzer, but I've found that I have similar likings to Robert Parker.The wine is 65% Monastrel (same thing as Mouvedre) 20% Cab Sav and 15% Garnacha Tintorera.

And of course as is my luck, I bought this wine fro 17.99 at the tasting and two days later sent me an email that the wine was on sale for $14.00 a bottle. Isn't that a kick in the nuts.

2005 Bodegas Castano Solanera

International Wine Cellar Notes:"Saturated purple. Smoky raspberry and cherry on the nose, with a sexy mocha quality adding complexity. Fleshy, round dark fruit liqueur flavors caress rather than pummel the palate. Gentle tannins arrive late to add structure but this is all about silky, juicy fruit."

JB Notes:This wine had a nice smoky berry nose. Its a big wine, its not for pussy palates. If you like big reds you'll like this.

Rating: Good (buy this wine)

Also - If you like this part of the blog please leave me a comment. I'm going to try to do affordable wines that you can find in your local wine shop wherever you live, so hopefully its helpful to all the readers wherever you are.

Also - I made a Rachel Ray recipe the other day and CB loved it. He's still pissed it was RR's recipe.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Fire Roasted Veggie Omelet

On Saturday CB and I went to Masa for brunch and I had wonderful fire roasted vegetable omelet. The next morning I was still thinking about the omelet and how good it was, so I tried to recreate what I had at the restaurant. It was a little different because I didn't have all of the vegetables that they had, but this was pretty damn good.

First I finely diced the following:
1/2 red bell pepper
1/2 green bell pepper
1/2 yellow squash
10 asparagus spears
1/4 red onion

I took the vegetables and added about 1tsp taco seasoning to them and put them in a hot skillet coated with spray and sauteed them over med-high heat for about 7 minutes, so they were still crunchy) I also seasoned them with salt and pepper.

I removed them from the heat - in another saute pan I liberally coated with nonstick cooking spray I added 1/2 cup egg whites and let them cook, (without touching them) until they had cooked through, I then added the hot sauteed veggies to the middle of the eggs and folded them in half.

I served with cold salsa fresca and an English muffin. I think it would have been even better with a dollop of sour cream on the side.

Rating - So Damn Good (and healthy)

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Mango Kiwi Black Bean Salsa

Easy. Easy Easy Easy. Well, once you get past the mango. If you've never worked with a mango before I don't suggest you peel it before you try to cut it, they turn into slippery little torpedoes when you do. Next time I work with a mango I'll peal it like THIS not peeling it first then proceeding to chase it around the cutting board for twenty minutes.

Fridays during lent means one thing to Catholics - FISH! I made this lovely salsa to top a nice piece of grilled white fish last Friday. But, I think it would even be better with a little cilantro and used in fish tacos...

Mango Kiwi Black Bean Salsa
1/2 mango chopped
1/2 red pepper diced
1/2 red onion diced
1 kiwi quartered lengthwise and cut into triangles
1/2 C black beans
juice of half a lemon

Combine all ingredient (salt and pepper if you like) and top any piece on grilled fish or use in fish tacos.

Rating - Damn Good (even CB said so)