Lobsta Rolls

ImageWhy is it that every time the battery on your smoke detector starts to get low it’s the middle of the night? That obnoxiously loud chirp, followed by a woman’s computerized voice saying, “WARNING. LOW BATTERY” at 1 am, startling you awake from vivid dreams about tsunamis, is terrifying. Why can’t that chirp and that warning message ever start in the middle of the day, when it’s bright, and you aren’t completely disoriented? 

Smoke detectors have kind of become the bane of my existence… At least for my existence last night anyway. I’m house-sitting for my parents right now. I spent the night tossing and turning on the couch trying to hide from the warning chirps because I was too lazy and sleepy to get out a ladder or a chair and attempt to change the smoke detector battery in their bedroom at 1 am. Once I moved to the couch, I realized how scary it was to be alone in my parents’ house. The living room has a lot of windows. And the yard is really big. And dark. And quiet. And I watched the Impossible a few hours before bed. Which isn’t necessarily a scary movie, but it’s sad and disturbing and rather graphic, hence the vivid tsunami dreams. So I basically started freaking myself out and barely slept at all, especially since I could still hear the sound of the warning chirp coming from down the hallway every 5 minutes. And this morning, when I got out the ladder, I still could not reach the smoke detector to change the battery! Those things should have a remote, so that you can at least shut the freakin thing up until you can find a taller human being to come over and help you fix the stupid thing.

These are the moments where I wish I had a man. Sure, a husband or a live in boyfriend would be ideal. But sometimes I just think that a man servant would suffice. Like a butler. Or a male bitch. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about being an independent woman and burning my bra and all that (okay, not really. I wouldn’t exactly call myself a feminist). But sometimes, I’m just too lazy or unmotivated to worry about doing it all myself. And I want some tall, strong, handsome man to do the work for me. Like change the battery in my smoke detector. Or put air in my tires. Or carry heavy objects up the two flights of stairs to my apt. Or purchase, cook, crack and pick a lobster tail. 

Alas. I have no such man servant. Or butler. Or even a potential dating prospect to eventually serve in this capacity. So when I read the recipe for lobster rolls in this issue of Real Simple and they suggested buying frozen lobster (as opposed to live, scary ones), I thought it was such a genius idea. If Martha Stewart is endorsing frozen lobster tails, it can’t be that bad, right? However, when I read the recipe more closely, I realized they still intended for you to buy a lobster tail and cook and pick it. But I was fortunate enough to find already picked, packed in water, fully cooked and frozen Maine lobster. I was a little wary of buying lobster this way, but I decided to take a walk on the wild side. And it was actually really good and made for a much easier version of lobster roll than I had ever imagined.

So despite my new, easy recipe for lobster roll, I’m still looking for someone to change the battery in my smoke detector, help me with my car, and do other various manly things. So if there’s any tall, young bucks out there who are free this evening, lemme know.

LOBSTA ROLLS

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Ingredients:

  • 8 oz of cooked lobster, thawed if using frozen
  • 2 tbs of mayonnaise 
  • 1 ear of corn
  • 2-3 celery sticks, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbs of lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3-4 dashes of Tabasco
  • 4 small cibatta buns, lightly toasted with butter

Directions:

Steam the corn in a pot of boiling water for about 6 minutes. Remove and lightly butter the ear. Once it cools, remove it from the cob.

Combine corn, celery, lobster, mayo, lemon juice, and salt and pepper in a bowl. Slowly add in a few dashes of Tabasco, and more mayo and lemon juice if needed until it’s the desired taste and consistency you desire.

Spread on your lightly toasted buns and serve. 

Notes: The first time I ever had a lobster roll, the bread was dry. Good bread is key to a good lobster roll! I really liked the addition of the Tabasco here to give it some heat and help cut on the buttery sweetness of the dish. Feel free to substitute the mayo with veganaise. And I’m calling these “lobsta” rolls simply because I think it’s funny to say “lobsta” instead of “lobster.” 

TEX-MEX QUINOA STUFFED PEPPERS

ImageI just made my to-do list for work this week. There are five things on it. That’s right, five. For a whole week. And I already did one of them. So I guess that means there are really only four. I could probably come up with other things to do, but eh. What’s the point? Summers are slow around here. I feel like we bust our butts all year long, so once the fiscal year ends, I kind of just want to slow down and relax for a few weeks. I just wish I was slowing down and relaxing at the beach… not at my desk. 

Alas. Here I am. (sigh) I guess this means I have plenty of time to tell you about these quinoa stuffed peppers I made last night. Don’t let my sigh fool you– They were delish. I’m looking forward to leftovers tonight.

The only red bell peppers I could find in the store were GINORMOUS. Yet, I still had plenty of filling leftover, which tastes great on its own. So you could choose to stuff this in the peppers or… not. They were a little more time consuming than I thought they would be. It just took me a while to get all the ingredients together. Nevermind that I was distracted by the real housewives drama going on in the background… That Vicki is cray.

TEX-MEX STYLE QUINOA STUFFED PEPPERS

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of uncooked quinoa
  • 3-4 large red bell peppers
  • 1 cup of black beans
  • 1/2 cup of corn
  • 1/4 cup of green chiles
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1/4-1/2 cup of feta cheese crumbles
  • 1/4-1/2 cup of another shredded cheese of your choice (see note below)
  • 3/4 of a orange bell pepper, diced (optional, see note 2 below)
  • a big handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
  • cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Cook quinoa according to package instructions. 

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine quinoa, black beans, corn, chiles, jalapeno, feta, tomatoes, cilantro, shredded cheese, and orange pepper (if using) in a large bowl. Then go to town adding your cumin, garlic powder, chili powder, salt and pepper until the mix has a good flavor. 

Cut the tops of the red peppers off and scoop out the seeds and seams from the insides. Spoon the quinoa mixture into the red peppers until they are stuffed to the brim. Add some more shredded cheese to the top.

Set stuffed red peppers in a baking dish lined with aluminum foil and olive oil. Set the tops of the peppers back on as best you can. Bake for 25-35 minutes, until your red peppers are pretty soft and somewhat prune-y. Let cool for a few minutes before digging in. 

Note: I have this block of cheese that I keep using. But I threw away the original packaging so I don’t know what kind of cheese it is. If you have pepper jack or something that shreds nicely (vs. grating, like parmesan does), use that. 

Note 2: I had a bit of an orange pepper that I just threw in here b/c I needed to use it. If you aren’t serving the quinoa in a pepper, I definitely recommend adding the pepper. But since I served this in peppers, the extra pepper wasn’t needed. That’s why I said it’s optional. 

SUMMER SOBA NOODLES

Summer Soba NoodlesThere’s this recipe blogger (who shall remain nameless) who my sister and I love to hate. Her recipes are delicious and her photographs are beautiful. But her writing drives me nuts. She’s always saying things like, “I had some mung beans on hand so I decided to just whip up some hummus.” Mung beans? What are those? And where the heck do you buy them? Or “I had some nettles from the market that I wanted to use up so I made this pasta and it was a total breeze.” Nettles? Seriously? No one just has nettles. And a pasta with nettles does not sound like a breeze.  I find it annoying that she makes whipping up recipes with obscure ingredients sound so easy, as if everyone lives this glamorous life of going to the “market” (vs. the “grocery store”) and has a fully stocked kitchen with healthy, wholesome ingredients and beautiful dishes and perfect lighting. Sorry, but that just isn’t my reality.

However, this dish I am about to share with you was actually born out of ingredients that I had on hand and needed to use up. And it was easy to make! Other than the sesame oil and the miso paste, nothing I’m listing here is obscure. And sesame oil and miso are pretty easy to find and can be used in a lot of recipes.

I was going to see a friend’s new house last week and offered to bring dinner. I was planning to make my spring pasta, but I realized the only pasta I had were soba noodles. So I decided to do an asian twist on what I was originally planning to make. And voila!

SUMMER SOBA NOODLES

Summer Soba Noodles 2

Summer Soba Noodles 3

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of soba noodles (9.5 oz)
  • 1 cup of multi colored heirloom tomatoes, diced
  • 4 scallions, sliced thin
  • 2 large handfuls of cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 1 tbs of fresh mint, chopped
  • 1 avocado, cubed
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • about 1/4 cup of low sodium soy sauce or shoyu
  • about 2 tbs of sesame oil
  • about 2 tbs of rice vinegar
  • about 2 tbs of water
  • 1 tsp of fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tsp of yellow miso paste
  • Siracha to taste (optional)
  • Sesame seeds

Directions:

Cook soba noodles according to package instructions. Drain and rinse.

Make the dressing or sauce. In a small mixing bowl, combine soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, water, garlic, mint, miso paste, lime juice and a few generous pinches of the cilantro and scallions. Whisk together, adding more water, vinegar, lime juice, sesame oil as needed. Start with smaller amounts and add more as needed, to taste. You don’t want the soy sauce to overpower everything. If you want, you can add siracha to the dressing and whisk it in. I opted not to do this since one of my friends does not like spicy food.

Combine noodles, tomatoes, avocado, remaining cilantro and scallions in a large bowl. Slowly add dressing until it’s the consistency and taste that you want. Top with sesame seeds and lime wedges for garnish. Add siracha as desired.

Note: When dicing the tomatoes, I made sure to separate the seeds and juicy guts as much as possible. Small heirloom tomatoes can be pretty juicy when you dice them and I was worried this would “water down” my dish. I also think this recipe would be good with some cilantro lime shrimp. Yum! 

Potato Salad Re-Mix

Potato Salad Remix 2Happy post 4th of July Tuesday, everyone! I hope you all had a lovely holiday and spent the day/evening/weekend eating your face off, enjoying some brews, sitting by the pool and watching fireworks somewhere like I did.

Potato salad seems to be a staple at any summer BBQ. And don’t get me wrong, I love a good old fashioned potato salad, with eggs and pickles and whatever else is in there. I really have no idea… I’ve never made it. But this year, I decided to create a lighter, healthier version of potato salad to bring to my summer parties. A potato salad re-mix, if you will. I went to three different parties this weekend (not on the same day, that would be miserable, and besides, I am not that popular) and brought this salad to every single one of them. It was easy to make head of time and to transport. And it seemed to be a hit!

I didn’t get a lot of great pics, but hopefully what you see here will suffice. I’m also adding in a pic of me holding up a peppermint stick in a lemon by the pool. This was one of my favorite childhood treats to get at the fair. And now they sell them at the snack bar at our pool. Score! I may be the only person over the age of 12 buying them, but that’s neither here nor there. I also may be the only person over the age of 12 who says score. Did I really just say that? Score?! What? Annnyway… About that potato salad re-mix.

Lemon Peppermint Stick

Potato Salad Remix

 

POTATO SALAD RE-MIX

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag (about 2 lbs) of fingerling potatoes or other small waxy potatoes, cut into halves and quarters
  • About 2-3 cups of heirloom tomatoes, in varying sizes and colors, cut into halves and quarters
  • 1-2 cups of frozen peas, thawed
  • A heaping handful of fresh dill, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the dressing:

  • 2 tbs of mayo (or veganaise, which I used and prefer)
  • 1 tbs of plain greek yogurt
  • About 1 tbs of dijon mustard seeds
  • Lemon juice and water to taste

Directions:

Put the potatoes in a large pot of salted water. Bring to a boil. Once water is boiling, cook potatoes for 8-10 minutes, until just soft. Be careful not to overcook the potatoes or else they will get too mushy. Once the potatoes are finished cooking, drain and set aside to cool. (I boiled my potatoes the night before and put them in the fridge overnight. I added them and the dressing to the rest of the ingredients right before leaving for each party.)

While your potatoes are cooking, this is a good time to cut your tomatoes. Combine tomatoes, peas, potatoes and dill in a large mixing bowl.

In a smaller mixing bowl, whisk together the mayo, greek yogurt, mustard seeds, lemon juice and water. Continue to add mustard, lemon juice and water as necessary. The dressing should not be too thick. It’s better to add more water than lemon juice if you need to thin it out otherwise it becomes too bitter.

Add the dressing to the tomatoes, peas, potatoes and dill a little at a time until your salad is the consistency that you want. I tried not to go too heavy on the dressing. Then add salt and pepper to taste. Add more dressing or dill as needed. And enjoy!

 

Recipe adapted from: A Food for Thought blog

 

 

 

Pizza Dip

pizza dip 2You know those dishes that while you’re eating, you know you’re gonna regret it later, but it’s so good that you can’t stop and just keep eating anyway? Yeah, that’s how this pizza dip is. And yeah, I had major regret in the form of a stomach ache last night. But sometimes you just have to live in the moment.

My sister, her husband and I like to have lazy Sundays sometimes. Where we eat bad food and watch bad TV/movies. It’s usually sparked by a hangover, which my sister may have had yesterday. But I was just bored. Which really is not a good excuse to stuff yourself with cheese and carbs. But like I said, sometimes you just have to live in the moment. So after we made loaded cheese fries, and nibbled on baked Cheetos (a family favorite), I whipped up this dip. Just in time to watch Pitch Perfect (another family favorite).

This pizza dip would be good to take to a party, where there are more than 3 people. And since the 4th of July is this week and people are probably looking for party recipes, I thought I would share it now. (Look at me, being all ahead of the game.) Everyone loves cheese, so this should definitely be a crowd pleaser. Especially if there are boys. And especially if you add pepperoni.

PIZZA DIP

pizza dip

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Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces of cream cheese, softened (1 box of a block of cream cheese)
  • 8 ounces of shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 4-6 ounces of provolone cheese (I used about 4 slices, torn into small pieces)
  • 1/2 cup of shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup of fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/4 cup of fresh oregano, chopped
  • a dash of thyme
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 4 roma tomatoes, cut into small triangles
  • a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper
  • bread, crackers or chips for dipping

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Toss tomatoes with olive oil, salt and pepper. Lay out on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Bake/roast for about 20 minutes, until tomatoes are bursting.

Meanwhile, mix softened cream cheese with provolone, and most of the mozzarella and parmesan. Add in the herbs and garlic. Once tomatoes are ready, mix them in too. Transfer to an oven safe dish. Top with remaining mozzarella and parmesan cheese.

Bake for 25-30 minutes until the top is brown and cheese is bubbling. Serve with bread, chips or crackers.

Note 1: I used a 4th kind of cheese but I don’t know what it’s called. It was a block of some fancy cheese that I had leftover from another recipe. If you have another kind of cheese that you want to add, go for it. You can make the dip ahead of time, and either bake it half way or not at all and then pop it in the oven to get it bubbling when you get to the party.

Note 2: The 3 of us did not eat the entire bowl of dip. We only made it through about half. 

Recipe adapted from How Sweet It Is blog.

Spring Pasta with Tomatoes

ImageWell helloooo internet friends! It’s been a long time since I’ve posted anything on here. I wish I could say that I’ve been cooking and that I have lots of new recipes to share, but that would be a lie. Not only have I not had time to blog, I haven’t had time to cook. I can’t remember the last time I made anything other than grilled cheese or cereal. It’s been a busy spring. Good busy though! I’ve been over indulging in french fries, beers, chips and salsa, and peanut butter and jellies.

However, it’s time to get back in the kitchen and start eating clean again! I finally have a week with no plans so I went to Wegman’s yesterday, spent half my paycheck on produce and seafood and welp, now here I am. 

Tonight I made a delicious spring pasta dish that’s light and super easy to make. I was originally planning to make a salad with tilapia, but then I was like you know what. Maybe I shouldn’t rush into this whole healthy eating thing too quickly. Maybe I should ease myself back into it and meet in the middle with a nice comforting pasta. Just kidding. Really, I couldn’t handle the thought of my apartment smelling like fish for the rest of the night. 

Anyway, here’s the recipe. I’m trying to make this quick… I only have about 13 minutes until the Real Housewives of Orange County starts. Priorities, people! 

SPRING PASTA WITH TOMATOES

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Ingredients:

  • About 6 ounces of thin spaghetti, angel hair or capellini pasta (about half a box)
  • 2-3 plum tomatoes, diced 
  • 1/4 cup of chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup of chopped basil
  • 1-2 tbps of olive oil
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, minced (I used two but I think it was too much)
  • Salt, fresh cracked black pepper, and crushed red pepper (optional) to taste
  • Fresh grated parmesan cheese to taste (optional)

Directions:

Cook pasta according to package instructions. (I like to add a lot of salt and a little bit of olive oil to my water when I make pasta.) Drain well.

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Add more or less oil, cheese, salt and peppers as needed. Can be eaten warm or cold.

 

See, I told you it was easy! And I still have 5 minutes until RHOOC! #teamGretchen

 

Pea Pancakes

pea pancakes

So, I know what you’re thinking. Peas in pancakes? Gross. Or maybe you’re not thinking that. But that is what my co-worker said when I told her about this recipe. Whatever you’re thinking, please know that these pancakes are are good. Like, really good. I mean, you pour melted butter over them instead of syrup. How can anything doused in melted butter be bad? (I once had a sushi roll that involved dipping shrimp tempura in butter instead of soy sauce. So wrong. Yet so so right.)

Bon Appetit did a feature on peas in their spring issue, which included this recipe for pea pancakes. (Don’t be surprised if you see more recipes on here involving peas. In case you haven’t noticed, I get on a kick with one food/recipe/ingredient and then [b]eat it to death until I just can’t take it anymore. Or at least until I’ve moved on to my next food obsession.) Annnnyway, I had really been wanting to host a champagne brunch but no one in my family ever has time to get together on the weekends. So we had brunch for dinner last week to celebrate my mom’s birthday, and it was the perfect opportunity for me to try this recipe from Bon Appetit.

My uncle told me I was brave for trying a new recipe for guests, but I told him, “Eh, I like to throw caution to the wind, take risks. You know.” I am such a liar. I am a huge scaredy cat and overly cautious type-A person. Of course, as he said this, I was struggling to flip these pancakes without them falling apart, peas were flying everywhere, and I was having a mini anxiety that the recipe I brought to the brunch dinner that I insisted suggested we have, was not going to work. They were not looking quite as pretty as the ones in the magazine. But you know what, we can’t all have a food stylist. And despite my brief state of panic and a few unevenly cooked pancakes, I got it down and these came out really well. People even asked me to make a second batch!

So next time you’re hosting a champagne brunch, give these a try. You can keep them warm in the oven until ready to serve. I think they would go well with salmon. And of course, an extra spicy bloody mary as well.

PEA PANCAKES

brunch for dinner

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of frozen peas, thawed (I used about a bag and a half of frozen peas)
  • 2 tsps of kosher salt
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 cups of fat free cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • 2-4 tbsps of vegetable oil
  • a bunch of scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup of butter, melted

Combine cottage cheese, eggs, flour, and salt in a blender. Blend until well blended. Ha. Seriously though, turn the blender on until the eggs are beaten and everything is well mixed. Pour into a large mixing bowl. Add peas and most of the scallions and mix together. The batter should be thick but pourable.

Heat a non stick skillet over medium heat. Add a little oil or butter to the pan. Ladle or pour pancakes in 1/4 cupfuls, spreading out to 3-4 inch rounds with a spoon. Cook until bubbles begin to form. Flip and cook until the pancakes are browned on the bottom and cooked through.

If you need to keep them warm until serving, put the pancakes in a casserole dish or baking dish and store in the oven on 250 degrees until ready.

Drizzle with melted butter and remaining scallions and serve!

Notes: I doubled the recipe from Bon Appetit, since theirs was only for four people. Their single serving recipe says 2 tbs of vegetable oil. I didn’t have vegetable oil, so I used canola. And I honestly did not think I put in 4 whole tablespoons. But maybe I did. Math is not my strong suit. 

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit magazine.

FISH TACOS WITH CABBAGE SLAW

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They say you are what you eat. And if that’s the case, I may be turning into a fish. I’ve taught myself how to cook fish beautifully and have had fish tacos for dinner 3 nights in a row now. I think I was always intimidated about making fish, but it’s really not that hard. And if you really rub your spices into the fish before cooking it, it gives it a great flavor without the hassle of waiting for a marinade. 

The cabbage slaw on top of these tacos is really delicious too. And so is what I had for dessert after. It’s my new fav snack or sweet treat: Fat free Greek yogurt, with fresh strawberries, blackberries, honey (lots of honey) and a chocolate Fiber Plus granola bar. I’ve been eating a lot of that lately too… It’s like an ice cream sundae without the ice cream.

So I guess you could say I’m turning into a honey infused, Greek yogurt, cabbage slaw, tilapia taco. 

FISH TACOS WITH CABBAGE SLAW

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For the Cabbage Slaw:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of cabbage, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 tbsp of greek yogurt
  • juice from 1/2 of a lime
  • a handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
  • several generous sprinkles of cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix well and add more cumin and lime as desired.

For the seasoning rub: 

  • Argentina Steak Rub (or another spicy rub of choice)
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Paprika
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Sugar

Combine all ingredients in a small dish and stir to combine. I added the most of the Argentina Steak Rub, then paprika, then cayenne pepper, just a little bit of salt and garlic, a good amount of pepper and a pinch of sugar. 

For the fish tacos:

  • Fresh tilapia filet
  • 3-4 corn tortillas
  • 1/4 of an avocado, sliced thin
  • Cabbage slaw
  • Seasoning rub
  • Butter or margarin 

Rub the seasoning mix onto both sides of the fish, coating it well. Melt butter in a skillet on medium heat. I have a grill pan/skillet that I like to use, since I don’t have a grill. Using a real grill would probably be better, but I like that I use butter on the skillet because I feel like it helps the fish stay moist. Cook the fish on the skillet, until the edges start to turn white. Flip and cook the other side. The fish should be white all the way through and flake apart easily.

Warm your tortillas in a small skillet, with the lid on. This helps them become pliable. 

Break apart the fish into large chunks. Place on your tortillas, top with avocado and cabbage slaw. And ta-da! I’ve been eating these with a side of steamed asparagus sprinkled with fresh grated parmesan. 

And here’s a pic of my other obsession this week. 

GREEK YOGURT WITH HONEY, STRAWBERRIES, BLACKBERRIES,

and A GRANOLA BAR

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Veggie Pot Stickers Over Shaved Brussel Sprouts and Chickpeas

veg potsickers with brussel sprouts and chickpeasConfession #1: I did not make the pot stickers pictured above. I bought them frozen from the grocery store. Is that cheating? Maybe. But maybe not. I did come up with the idea to serve them over shaved brussel sprouts (which I am clearly obsessed with) and chickpeas that were sauteed with coconut oil and nutmeg. And I did come up with the idea to dip them in soy sauce spiked with Siracha. So it’s not really cheating. I could have made them myself and then blogged about how to do it. But wouldn’t you rather just hear about how to spice up a quick week night meal with half the work already done? I think so.

Confession #2: I often lie about my love for Siracha. I feel like Siracha has a cult following. People’s eyes light up when they talk ab it and they tend to bond with other Siracha die hards. I mean, I like Siracha and all. But it’s not my fav, even though I totally pretend like it is when I’m around a Siracha cult member just so I can fit in and sound cool. Well. Last night I felt like I finally understood. See, I’ve always eaten Siracha on it’s own. Well, not, like, spoonfuls of Siracha solo. But, like drizzled on something as the only condiment. However, when I added a whopping squirt of it to my soy sauce last night, I asked myself (out loud), “How have I lived 30 years of my life and never done this before?” It was amazeballs.

Confession #3: Yesterday morning I got up to go to a 6 am Pilates class at my gym. I woke up a few minutes late, so as per usual, I was rushing out the door to get to class on time. Side note: I HATE being late for classes at the gym. I will skip an entire hour long class even if I’m only five minutes late just so I don’t have to be the girl who walks in late, interrupts the warm up, and sets up while everyone else is already working out. I am late for everything else in my life, but when it comes to gym classes, I just can’t do it. Anyway, I got out to my car to a layer of ice SO thick that even my ice scraper couldn’t break through. I sat there and tried to let the car warm up for a few minutes. At this point, there were about 8 minutes until the class started. It takes me 10 minutes to get to my gym. And the ice was just not melting fast enough. So I turned the car off, went back inside, took off my gym clothes, put my pjs back on and went back to sleep for an hour and a half! This story has nothing to do with pot stickers or Siracha. But it’s just so ridiculous that I had to share it. And I felt like I needed a 3rd confession… for balance sake. But seriously. Who wakes up at the butt crack of dawn, gets all the way to the car, and then goes back inside when they realize they might have to walk into class 4 minutes late? That is social anxiety at it’s finest, ladies and gents.

And… these are my confessions. (I hope Usher is in your head now.)

Anyway, go to the Giant and buy some frozen pot stickers. And go to a random grocery store or specialty store and buy some Siracha. You won’t regret it.

VEGGIE POT STICKERS OVER BRUSSEL SPROUTS AND CHICKPEAS

veg potsickers with brussel sprouts and chickpeas2 veg potsickers with brussel sprouts and chickpeas3

Ingredients:

  • 5-6 frozen vegetable pot stickers (I used Giant brand)
  • 5-6 brussel sprouts, shaved thin on a mandolin
  • 1/4-1/2 cup of chickpeas
  • Roughly 1 tbsp of nutmeg
  • 1-2 tbsps of coconut oil (or whatever oil you like to cook with)
  • Salt to taste
  • Soy sauce
  • Siracha

Directions:

Bring a small to medium pot of water to boil over high heat. Add the frozen pot stickers to the boiling water and stir a bit. The pot stickers should be able to float freely in the pot. Return water to a boil. Lower heat to medium and cook for about 4-5 minutes. Drain.

Meanwhile, in a small saute pan, heat up the coconut oil. Add the brussel sprouts and saute for a few minutes, until they start to become a bit wilted. Add nutmeg and salt to taste. Add the chickpeas. Stir all together in the pan and cook for a few more minutes. I like for some of my brussel sprout shavings to be browned and for the rest to be all soft and wilted.

In a small dish, combine soy sauce and Siracha to taste.

Place the brussel sprout and chickpea mixture in a dish. Put the pot stickers on top. And serve with the soy sauce/Siracha on the side for dipping.

POACHED EGGS IN TOMATO SAUCE

Poached eggs in tomato sauce3

Hey guys, I’m back! It’s been a very busy month, and I feel like I’ve been on quite a hiatus from the blog. My apologies!  But I’m back with a stellar recipe that you should make tonight! It’s perfect for this snowy Monday (btw, snow in the last week of March? What’s up with that?!). I bet you already have the ingredients. And trust me, it’s easier than it sounds.

I’ve been wanting to try poaching an egg for almost a year now. Last year, around this time, Bon Appetit magazine featured all different ways to make eggs. And of course, one of them was poaching. But I was nervous to try it. I’ve heard it’s really hard, and I thought I needed special equipment.  I’ve  been in the kitchen when my brother-in-law, aka Poach Master Pat, has stood over a pot of hot water, cursing as egg yolks have opened, whites have not held together, and end results have not been as desired– aka more solid than gooey. But I have to give Pat credit, he’s gotten the poaching down. We don’t call him Poach Master Pat for nothing. So not only have I been afraid to try poaching eggs– I’ve also been lazy. Why poach them myself when we have a Poach Master in the family?

But last night I was feeling ambitious.  So I sat down to Google how to poach an egg and came across a recipe for poaching eggs in tomato sauce. I had all of the ingredients on hand and decided to just go for it. It also looked a lot easier than poaching an egg in a pot of water, which, don’t worry, I still intend to try soon enough. I served the eggs on warm toast with a side of sauteed, shredded brussel sprouts.

POACHED EGGS IN TOMATO SAUCE

Poached eggs in tomato sauce

Poached eggs in tomato sauce2

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of diced tomatoes, drained (mine already had onions and roasted garlic in the can, but you could use plain)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup of tomato sauce (plain tomato sauce from a can), optional
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • A dash of crushed red pepper, optional
  • A dash of cumin, optional
  • 3-4 eggs
  • your choice of bread, toasted (I used an Ezekiel sesame bun since that’s what I had in the freezer)

Directions:

Puree your diced tomatoes in a food processor or blender until relatively smooth.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and saute for about 30 seconds, or until fragrant. Add the pureed tomatoes. If using, add the tomato sauce. (It looked like I did not have enough sauce in the pan to poach the eggs from my tomatoes alone. So I added a bit more from a can I had in my pantry. The bottom of the pan should be covered by about an inch or two of sauce.) Add cumin and crushed red pepper. Stir well.

Continue to heat the sauce until it is hot and a bit bubbly.

In a small bowl, crack 1 egg. You cannot use eggs with broken yolks here, so crack the eggs in a bowl first so that you can ensure you do not have broken yolks or egg shells. Transfer the egg into the pan. Repeat with remaining eggs.

You can push the egg whites gently back together in the pan. Cover with a lid and let simmer over low to medium heat for about 5 minutes. Do not leave them in the pan for too long or your yolks will set. When you remove the cover, the egg whites should be set and the yolks should still be pretty jiggly. Remove from heat, but leave in the pan for a few more minutes.

Serve with eggs on the toast and extra sauce on the side.

Note: You could also use this as a starting point for many other recipes. Like huevos rancheros, or instead of toast, serve over wilted greens. There are many different possibilities! Get creative! And share in the comments below. 

Recipe adapted from marthastewart.com.