Tag Archives: veggies

Kyrgystan…

Friday, September 20 –

Here’s another one that happened about a month ago. But I know that Hot Momma, Baby Bear, and Wingwoman were around to help us devour this dinner.photo 2 (1)

And a photo. Hooray!

Hopefully the chaos will simmer down now and I can get back on track with these dinners. Laos is going to happen tomorrow. Yay!

Kyrgystan
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: www.kyrgyzchildrensfuture.org)

Kuurdak (Chyz-Byz) – (Stewed Brown Meat)

  • 2 lbs meat (beef, lamb or mutton — traditionally was organ meat) cut into small chunks
  • 4 onions, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (or mutton fat)
  • 3 green bell peppers, seeded and julienned
  • 1 cup cabbage, julienned
  • 1/2 tsp ground red pepper
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups water (approximately)
  • 2 Tbs tomato paste

In large pan, fry the meat in vegetable oil or fat until browned, about 10-15 minutes. Add sliced onion, green peppers cut in circles, cabbage, ground red pepper, black pepper, salt, bay leaves, water, and tomato paste. Simmer in partially covered pan until water absorbed and ingredients are soft, about 30-45 minutes. Remove bay leaves. Serve hot.

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Israel…

Sunday, May 19 –

Apparently I have some catching up to do! Mistress Whiskey picked this dinner to host, along with Bestie Extraordinaire, for her birthday. So there were so many people there that I can’t even name them all. All I photo(6)can say was there was a pretty darn good spread of food, some shenanigans, and an outrageous game called “butt quarters”. I’m sure you can imagine how hilarious that was!

I made the recipe exactly as it is written below, the only change being that I used chicken thighs instead of a whole chicken. And I simmered it for closer to 30 minutes instead of 75.

It turned out a little soupy instead of like wine-gravy that I thought it would be. I think it might have been even better without the flour in it so that the lemon and wine really got a chance to stand out against the dark meat. But other than that it was a pretty good dish.

Thank you to Mistress Whiskey and Bestie Extraordinaire for hosting, it was a great party!

Israel
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: www.easyjewishrecipes.com)

Chicken In Leek Garlic Lemon Sauce

  • 1 chicken, cut-up, skin removed
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 medium leek, cleaned and diced
  • 3 medium carrots, shredded
  • 1 ½ cups white wine (you can substitute chicken stock, water or your favorite juice: ex: pomegranate juice or syrup)
  • ¼ cup lemon juice (freshly squeezed is best)
  • 2 tsp. paprika

Pour half of the oil into a large skillet and leave it nearby. Place flour in a plastic bag together with pepper and mix it up. Place each piece of chicken in bag and shake to coat. Heat oil over medium high and brown each piece of chicken on both sides. Set aside.

With brown bits left in skillet, add a bit more oil then the onions, garlic, leek and carrots. Lower heat to medium and saute vegetables until they are soft. Add the wine, lemon juice and paprika, scraping up any brown bits left on skillet. Stir the sauce and let it cook for 10 minutes – it will reduce and thicken.

Add browned pieces of chicken back into sauce and cover. Simmer on low heat until chicken is fork-tender – about 75 minutes.


Indonesia…

Wednesday, April 11 –

Did I mention that I am not very good at measuring spices and sauces and stuff? This dinner was a prime example of that, in the best way possible. I took the recipes below and made them me-ified. I will try to photo(9)recreate for you what we did. Thank you to WingWoman and LightsOn for hosting and grilling this amazing dinner!

Chicken – I cut two breasts into thin strips so that they cook evenly and quickly (no one likes raw chicken). The marinade was coconut milk (about a tablespoon), water (about 1/8 of a cup), red curry paste (about two tablespoons), and brown sugar (about 1-1/2 tablespoons).

Shrimp – WingWoman thawed them and put them in the marinade. Fortunately they were already shelled and cleaned. The marinade was tamari, honey, sriracha, garlic, and sweet WingWoman love.

Lamb – I used cubed stewing lamb meat. The marinade was Ketjap Mani (Indonesian sweet soy sauce, about half a cup), garlic (two chopped cloves), ginger (grated root, length of about an inch), brown sugar (about a tablespoon), and lemon juice (half a lemon).

Veggies – I used bell pepper, onion, zucchini, and mushrooms. The marinade was tamari (I just poured and stirred the veggies until it looked right), hot chili paste (about three tablespoons), lemon grass (one fresh stalk, chopped), and garlic (three chopped cloves).

Rice – WingWoman put rice, water, coconut milk, red curry paste, and peas in the rice cooker.

Dessert – Fresh mango!

As you can see, it wasn’t very well measured. But goodness, was it good! LightsOn did all of the barbequing and they turned out fabulously. We ate like blog-kings! I think I need this dinner on the menu once a month. Mmmhmm!

Indonesia
(recipe borrowed from the cooks at: www.indochef.com)photo(10)

Indonesian Sate’s

  • 500 gr. of Beef, Pork or Chicken

Marinade:

  • 1 Onion
  • 1 Garlic clove
  • 30 ml Dark Soya sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon Lemon Grass
  • 1 teaspoon Hot Chilli paste
  • 1 glass red wine (optional)
  • 30 ml water

Preparation:  Dice the meat in to 2 cm square cubes and put onto bamboo skewers (about 4 per stick). Combine all the marinade ingredients into a food processor and make into a smooth paste. Poor this over the prepared sate’s and leave to marinade for at least 2 hours. Cook the sate’s on the barbecue or under the grill for 5 -10 min. until done and serve with hot Peanut Sauce.

Babi Kecap

  • 500 gr Tender Pork
  • 1 large Onion
  • 2 Garlic cloves
  • 3 cm fresh Ginger
  • 30 gr dark sugar
  • ½ cup Ketjap Manis
  • 2 cups Water
  • Lemon juice
  • 1 stock cube
  • Pepper & Salt

Preparation:  Finely dice Onion, Garlic and Ginger. Cut Pork into strips. Add Sugar, Pepper and Salt. Fry in small saucepan until Onion is soft and the pork is dark. Add the Ketjap Manis (sweet Indonesian soya sauce) and water, Lemon juice and stock cube and leave to simmer on a low flame for about 30 min.


India… {Potluck!}

Saturday, April 6 –

There was SO MUCH FOOD. Oh my gosh. We had lamb korma, two types of chicken tikka, matar paneer, raita, gluten-free naan, gluten-free onion fritters, mango lassi, rice, gulab jamun, chutney, samosas, and a potato dish photo(8)that I missed the name of. There was a ton of people and we all ate so well there was much groaning and belly patting. I can’t even tell you how much fun it was to have so many cooks participate. Thank you, again, to everyone that cooked, ate, drank, and participated in the India potluck. Thank you to RubsWithLove and SirVJ for hosting this dinner!

Let me admit that this dinner was hard for me because I was having an allergy attack so bad that I couldn’t smell or taste anything. Ugh. I don’t recommend it. Four allergy pills and an air purifier later, I finally enjoyed the dinner.

I made the matar paneer recipe as it was written (however, I did not really measure the spices very well at all) but when I was all done it just didn’t look like the matar paneer that I was used to at restaurants. So I added coconut milk to it. But that watered down the flavor so much that it didn’t taste like anything other than coconut milk and a spicy-heat punch to the tongue. Not so good. So I kept adding the spices that the recipe called for trying to fix it. That worked… a little bit. I ended up dumping in curry powder and it fixed it just fine. I know I probably shouldn’t have messed with it, but it did not look like the photo – not one bit! In the end it turned out ok. Not my favorite, but ok.

The raita was easy to make and pretty much vanished because of how many spicy dishes we had. I am super glad that I made a double batch. Everything else was so good that I wanted to eat seconds (I didn’t, but I wanted to!). I definitely recommend Indian food as a great potluck idea for parties! Just make sure to have mints on hand after everyone is done eating.

India
(recipes borrowed from the cooks at:  www.sailusfood.com and www.epicurious.com)

Matar Paneer Recipe

  • 1/4 kg paneer – cube and saute in a tsp of ghee till lightly browned
  • small cup fresh green peas
  • 1 large onion, finely chop
  • ginger-green chilli paste (1″ ginger piece+3 green chillis)
  • 2 tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 3/4 tsp red chilli pwd
  • pinch of turmeric pwd
  • 1 1/4 tsps coriander pwd
  • 1/2 tsp kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves)
  • pinch of garam masala pwd
  • 1 tsp Kitchen King masala pwd
  • 1 tsp malai, top of milk
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp oil

1 Heat oil in a cooking vessel, add the onions and sauté, approx 4-5 mts. Add ginger-green chilli paste, coriander pwd, turmeric pwd, red chilli pwd and combine. Add few tbsps water and saute for a mt.
2 Add tomatoes and cook for 4-5 mts. Turn off heat and cool. Make a coarse paste.
3 Return this paste to the vessel, add a cup of water and bring to a boil. Reduce flame, add the green peas and cook for 6 mts. Add the paneer and malai and simmer for 7-8 mts. Add salt. Simmer for a few more mts.
4 Stir in malai, garam masala pwd, Kitchen King masala and kasuri methi and combine, cook for a mt. Turn off flame.
5 Let it sit for a while before serving. The gravy thickens, so at the time of serving, add a little milk and combine. Serve hot with rotis or naan.

Traditional Indian Raita

  •     1/2 cup plain yogurt
  •     1/2 cup chopped seeded English hothouse cucumber
  •     2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  •     2 teaspoons chopped green onions
  •     1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  •     1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

Preparation: Mix all ingredients in medium bowl. Season to taste with salt. Chill raita, covered, until ready to serve.


Hungary…

Monday, March 18 –

Full house for this dinner, that’s for sure! We had: Hot Momma (wine and bread), Baby Bear, MoneyShot, SlotMachine (cucumber salad, wine, and beer), Officially Gangster, ChinUp (goulash), MyBuddy, photo(5)BestestFianceEver, and yours truly. Whew, what a crowd! And we had some seriously good food, too.

I heated up two large pans and put the cubed pork in, browning the pieces on both sides but not worrying about cooking them all the way through. Then I transferred the pieces from the secondary pan to the main large one and added a little oil to the smaller pan and cooked the onions until they were translucent. In the big pan I added in the paprika, crushed tomato, sugar, bay leaves, water, and drained sauerkraut. Once the onions were done I added them in as well. Covered and set to simmer on low until everyone showed up. Once everyone was over I added the sour cream, stirred, and it was ready to go.

The green beans I rinsed and trimmed off the ends. I put them into a large pot, covered them in water, set it on the stove, covered it and turned it onto medium high. I let that boil until they were tender but not squishy. Drained and set aside. In another pan, while the beans were simmering, I melted the butter, added the onions, and cooked until they were soft. I used dried dill and then added the flour. Once that was well mixed I added the rest, let it bubble, and it thickened pretty quickly. I added the beans, stirred, turned the heat to low and put the lid back on.

That’s all four burners going at once! Which meant I had to quickly shuffle the two extra pans into the sink when everyone showed up so that the goulash could be on the heat as well. And dinner was served!photo(4)

The pork was tender and cooked through after being on low for about 40 minutes. The sauerkraut, tomatoes, and sour cream tasted almost like a vodka sauce for pasta. You almost couldn’t tell it was sauerkraut except for the texture. That with a good crusty bread would be a great warm, filling dinner. The goulash looked tender (I say looked because I didn’t try it, as it was beef) but the potatoes I did nibble on had great flavor and were extremely good. And finally the cucumber salad was a good bright, sharp flavor to cut between the rich flavors.

Definitely a win all around – and all of the plates were scraped clean. Keep these recipes handy!

Hungary
(recipes borrowed from the cooks at: http://homepage.interaccess.com/~june4)

Sauerkraut and Pork (Szekely gulyas)

  • 2 lbs. pork cubedphoto(6)
  • 1 &1/2 lbs. sauerkraut, rinse and drained
  • 2 white onions, chopped
  • 2 Tbls. lard or oil (if meat is very lean)
  • 2 Tbls. Hungarian sweet paprika (no generic please)
  • 1 large can of crushed tomato (or fresh tomatoes peeled and crushed)
  • 1 Tbls. sugar
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1/2 pint of sour cream (no yogurt please)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Brown the meat and onion (in lard or oil if needed) in a pot with lid. Add the paprika to the meat and onion mix, stir to mix in (do not burn). Put in the drained sauerkraut, crushed tomatoes, bay leaves and sugar. Mix. Cover pot. Cook slowly for about one hour, or until meat is tender. Add the sour cream and stir it in. The aroma will make yphoto(3)our mouth water. Serve in soup plates, with good crusty bread, a meal fit for the Kaiser.

Green Beans with Dill (Kapros zoldbabfozelek)

  • 2 packages of green beans
  • 2 Tbl. Lard or butter
  • 2 Tbl. flour
  • 1/2 cup of sliced onion
  • 1/4 cup of good vinegar
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 Tbl. chopped fresh dill

Directions: Cook beans in salted water till tender, not soft. Melt lard or butter, add onions and saute till limp, add chopped dill. Then add flour making a roux. Add 1 cup of water, sugar and vinegar and stir while the sauce gets thick. Add drained beans, and mix, if too thick add a little more water.


Honduras…

Saturday, March 16 –

For this dinner we had: BestestFianceEver, Bestie Extraordinaire (wine), Mistress Whiskey (wine), Hot Momma (wine), Mr. Hero (baleadas), BabyBear, GrandpaBear, LittleBigBrother, ChinUp (mango, avocado photosalsa and chips), and MyBuddy (banana milkshakes). Later in the evening we also had LightsOn and WingWoman show up to hang out and drink some wine.

I started by adding oil to a pan and cooking the onion and bell pepper until they were just starting to brown. Then I added the garlic and let that heat up. While the veggies were cooking on the stove I added the rest of the ingredients to the crockpot. Once the veggies were done I added them in, stirred to mix, and let it simmer for a couple of hours. I did not use the sherry and I substituted a seeded habanero for the yellow pepper, which made it really, really spicy. Almost too spicy, really (which is really weird for me to say). After a few hours I blended the soup with an immersion blender and let it continue to simmer until everyone was ready to eat.

The sweet potato I substituted for a yam because I like their flavor better. Steamed, drained, crisped in hot oil, then drained. Put on a bed of baby arugula (which is what I had in the fridge) and feta, then tossed. I added the dressing in on top, made exactly as the recipe says, and gave that a good toss too.

ChinUp and MyBuddy had the salsa and chips out. Mr. Hero made the baleadas with all the toppings (basically tacos on soft corn tortillas), including beef, beans, onion, cheese, sour cream, and avocado. The wine was flowing freely, and dinner was served!

The soup was ok. I think I would have liked it better unblended. It was spicy but not terribly flavorful. Maybe it needed some ham or something to go with it? I’m not sure. The salad was good, the dressing was tangy and delightful. The beleadas were good and a great compliment to the other dishes. And the mango, avocado salsa was a perfect topping to chips and to all the rest of the food. Last we get to the milkshakes. They were good… and then they added rum. Banana rum milkshakes are pretty darn delicious. And dangerous, because you don’t really notice the rum!

Honduras
(recipes borrowed from the cooks at: http://sidewalkmystic.com)

Bahia Black Bean Soup

  • 1 Onion
  • 1 red or yellow bell pepper, finely diced
  • 2 garlic minced garlic cloves
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 3 15-oz cans black beans, drained
  • 2 C stock
  • 1 1/2 t. oregano
  • 1 yellow chili, seeded and chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped (brave souls leave the seeds)
  • 1 15-oz can whole tomatoes with liquid or 18-oz can sauce
  • 1/2 lime, squeezed for juice (critical)
  • 1/4 c. sherry (I use red wine)
  • fresh cilantro (1 1/2 t. if fresh isn’t available)

Directions:  [The website author says: my adjustments to the recipe include adding a smoked ham hock for flavor.  As well, if you find the soup too heavily favored by the tomatoes, merely back down on the amount of tomato and increase the stock proportionately]. Saute onion; bell pepper and garlic in oil until onion is translucent. Add beans, stock and oregano. Heat thoroughly. Seed and chop yellow and jalapeno chilies and put into blender. Add lime juice and tomato. Puree to finely mince the chilies. Add black bean mixture to blender (in batches) and puree. When everything is pureed, return it to the soup pot. Simmer at least 1.5 hours. Add wine and fresh cilantro to taste.

Garnishes: Rice, grated cheeses, diced onion, salsa, sour cream, plain yogurt, grilled sausages.

Mixed Greens with Sweet Potatoes and Feta Cheese

  • ¾ lb sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into ¼ to ½ inch dice
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 T fresh lime juice
  • 1 T balsamic vinegar (don’t pinch; buy the top shelf stuff)
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • ½ t of Dijon mustard
  • ¼ C of buttermilk (you can use regular milk; just let it stand with a T of regular vinegar in it)
  • 8-10 oz of fresh greens (we use spinach and escarole – small slices of red cabbage add to the esthetic appeal)
  • 4 oz fresh feta cheese (I have used blue cheese when I make a fresh blue cheese dressing to accompany the salad)

Directions:  Steam the sweet potato for 5-8 minutes.  Just tender.  Remove and drain on paper towels.  Get the steamed potatoes very dry. Heat 2 t of olive oil in medium skillet over medium heat.  Add potatoes, shaking pan often for 15 minutes.  Remove when crisp and drain again on paper towels.  Mix together the lime juice, balsamic vinegar, garlic, mustard, salt pepper, and remaining olive oil and buttermilk.  Whisk in a blender (start to drool). Place greens and cheese in a salad bowl and toss with the dressing.  Top the salad with the sweet potatoes, serve, and call me.  Serve with tortillas.


Haiti…

Sunday, March 10 –

I’m not entirely sure why I got so lazy with this dinner, maybe because it was just the two of us, but because of my corner-cutting it turned out… well… strong. And salty. Very, very, very, very, very salty. photo(11)

Bestest fiance ever started the bacon cooking (three sliced, chopped into large-ish bits) and when they were mostly crispy I put the onion and a half cup of canned kidney beans in the pan with the bacon and drippings. I let that cook until the onion was starting to soften and then I added the cloves, garlic, pepper, cubes, and salt. Because I used canned beans I only had a little bit of the liquid it comes in, so I decided to top the rest off with vegetable broth. Because I used the bacon fat, I didn’t need the vegetable oil. And because I didn’t read the directions all the way down, I chopped the habanero up and threw that in as well. On top went the rice. I let that come up to a boil, put the lid on, and turned it down to low and let it simmer for 20 minutes. After tasting the resulting rice dish, which honestly had great flavor as long as you don’t mind that your mouth almost imploded with saltiness. Really, I should have known that broth plus bouillon cubes plus bacon plus salt would be too much, I just didn’t think that far ahead. But I will totally keep this on my list to make again, minus the crazy amount of salt that I unknowingly subjected us to.

The salmon, on the other hand, was simple and delicious. I got one 3/4 pound filet, put it in a baking dish and poured on a mix of the lemon juice, wine, and onion dressing (about a quarter cup of each). I sliced some red onion and red bell pepper and put them in the baking dish as well. Put it into the 375* oven and baked it for 20 minutes. It came out flavorful (and not salty at all, which totally saved our dinner) and delicious. The onion dressing was a neat way of cheating to get those flavors together, but I honestly prefer using spices and minced onion instead.

All in all, it was pretty ok. I’m not sure I’m brave enough to use the rice for leftovers, but I will try!

Haiti
(recipes borrowed from the cooks at: www.everythinghaitian.com)

Riz National (Rice and Beans)

  • 2 cups Long Grain Rice
  • 1/2 cup Dried Red Kidney Beans
  • 3 cups Water kidney beans was boiled in
  • 1/4 lb Salt Pork or Bacon
  • 2 Chicken bouillon cubes (Maggi)
  • 1 1/2 Tsp Salt
  • 6-8 Whole Cloves
  • 1/4 Tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1/2 cup Finely Diced White Onion
  • 1/4 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Whole Habanero or Scotch Bonnet pepper (optional)
  • 3 cloves     Garlic, peeled and crushed

Instructions: Bring dried beans to boil in 8 cups of water. Cook until tender, but shape remains. Do not overcook. Strain beans and put bean water aside. Sauté salt pork or bacon, spices, and beans in oil, until beans are crispy. Add salt, cloves, and black pepper. Add 3 cups of bean water and heat to boiling. Add rice, bouillon cubes, and hot pepper to boiling liquid. Once water has evaporated, remove whole pepper and mix in 1 Tbsp of butter. Cover pot tightly and continue cooking on low heat ( approx. 20 minutes) until done.

Saumon Grille (Grilled Salmon)

  • 3 Lbs. Fresh Salmon Steaks
  • 1/4 cup Lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup White Wine
  • 4 Tbsp Butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup Vidalia Onion Dressing
  • 1 Medium Red Onion, sliced
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, Julienne
  • To taste Fresh Ground Black Pepper

Instructions:  Place Salmon Steaks in a large bowl, and pour lemon juice. Clean Salmon thoroughly and rinse in cold water. Place clean Salmon in an oven, proof dish.  Add Wine, Vidalia Onion Dressing, and black pepper. Mix well and refrigerate for 1/2 hour. Pour 1/2 of melted butter on Salmon Steaks. Bake in preheated 375 F oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Turn them over and pour remaining butter, bake until golden brown. Add Onion and Red Bell Pepper and mix.