Category: Vegetarian Meals


Cook as directed and then let your mind go!!!

Cook as directed and then let your mind go!!!

What is this this thing called “QUINOA”….(pronounced keen-wha)?? Some people call it a grain…some people call it a super food…and then I have  one friend that says “it looks like dirt!!”

Quinoa looks like a grain but is actually a seed but can be prepared as you would whole grains like rice or barley. But the beauty of this grain is that it has the highest protein content than any other grain.  It is gluten-free AND cholesterol free!! Hell, you can even eat it for breakfast, like oatmeal!!!  You can make salads, side dishes and add just about everything but the kitchen sink to it. It is YOUR pallet to do whatever you want!

Here I used it as a side dish….

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 c cooked Quinoa (I cook mine in a rice cooker) but in a saucepan with the ratio of 1 c Quinoa to 2 c liquid…water or chicken broth.
  •  Now,  just add “color”.  Red, Yellow, Orange Peppers, red onion, green onions..leftover chicken, left over brussel sprouts, panchetta, toasted almonds, water chestnuts for crunch…or apples…raisins or cranraisins…cilantro..tomatoes…the choice is yours!!!!
  • Whatever I am going to add, I saute in a pan with EVOO for about 2-3 mins and then I add to the cooked Quinoa.
  • Season with S & P…and anything else your heart desires!!! I mean, this is sooooo darn easy and yet, so darn good and what a great source of protein!!
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To me, Gazpacho is like eating fresh salsa.  Sure you can puree it, but I like chopping the fresh vegies and putting them in a marinade and then adding the tomato base, etc.  I got this recipe years ago from Cooks Illustrated and just love it.  You can spice it up with the Chipotle Chilies or you can leave them out and add some Tabasco sauce…totally up to you!!

INGREDIENTS: and this feed 8-10 people!! Great leftover!

  • 3 ripe medium beefsteak tomatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds), cored and cut into 1/4-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
  •  2 medium red bell peppers (about 1 pound), cored, seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch cubes. (about 2 cups)
  • 2 small cucumbers (about 1 pound), one peeled and the other with skin on, both seeded and cut into 1/4-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 small sweet onion (such as Vidalia, Maui, or Walla Walla) or 2 large shallots, peeled and minced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 medium cloves garlic, minced or pressed through a garlic press (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 2 teaspoons table salt
  • 1/3 cup sherry vinegar
  • Ground black pepper
  • 5 cups tomato juice
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons minced chipotle chiles in adobo (start with a little and then add to it…depends on how spicy you like it)
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro leaves
  • 6 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 8 ice cubes
  • Extra-virgin olive oil for serving

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. 1. Combine the tomatoes, bell peppers, cucumbers, onions, garlic, salt, vinegar, and pepper in a large (at least 4-quart) nonreactive bowl. Let stand until the vegetables just begin to release their juices, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato juice, chipotle chiles, cilantro, lime juice, lemon zest, and ice cubes. Cover tightly and refrigerate to blend flavors, at least 4 hours and up to 2 days.
  2. 2. Adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper and remove and discard any unmelted ice cubes. Serve cold, drizzling each portion with about 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil and topping with the desired garnishes

WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS:

For the best gazpacho recipe, with clearly flavored, distinct vegetables in a bracing tomato broth, we chopped the vegetables by hand, tossed them in a sherry vinegar marinade, used a fresh-flavored tomato juice, and chilled our soup for a minimum of four hours.

Mushroom Wellington

Shopping List or what you will need:

  • 2 large Portobello Mushrooms 5-6” wide
  • 1 leek/1 shallot
  • Minced garlic in jar
  • 1 pkg Button Mushrooms
  • 1 pkg Shiitake Mushrooms
  • 1 bag (4 oz) chopped walnuts
  • 4-5 oz blue cheese
  • Dijon Mustard
  • Fresh thyme/fresh chives (tho dry is fine too)
  • 1 pkg frozen puff pastry sheet (Pepperidge Farm) thawed
  • Parchment paper/baking sheet
  • 1 pkg baby spinach
  • 1 pkg Arugula
  • 1 ripe pear
  • 1 red grapefruit
  • Champagne or white wine vinegar
  • Shaved parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg scrambled with 1 TBS water.

*** And a good couple of hours to put this together…along with some nice music and maybe a nice glass of wine!!!!*** This will take time, but if you are organized and follow my lead, it will be EASY!!!

PREP

  • Toast ½ c chopped walnuts and put aside
  • Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper & put aside.

PORTOBELLO MUSHROOMS

  • 2 large Portobello mushrooms cleaned, stems & gills removed
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme

FILLING/SAUTE

  • ½ c minced leeks
  • 2 TBS minced garlic from the jar
  • 1 ½ TBS olive oil
  • 1 cup  each stemmed &minced button mushrooms AND shiitake mushrooms
  • ½ c toasted  chopped walnuts
  • 2 TBS minced fresh chives
  • 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 1 tsp fresh chopped thyme

WELLINGTON:

  • 4 TBS  Blue Cheese
  • 1 sheet  frozen puff pastry, thawed (8.65 oz)
  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 TBS water

DIRECTIONS:

1.         Gather EVERYTHING together and put on the counter

2.         READ THE DIRECTIONS….then read them again!!!!

3.         Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line baking sheet with parchment paper

BRUSH: each Portobello, gill side UP, with the mixture of mustard, thyme, salt & pepper and roast in oven until slightly brown, about 20 mins and USE A TIMER!!!

SAUTE: leeks, shallots & garlic in olive oil in skillet over med-high heat until softened, 2-3 minutes.  Add minced button & shiitake mushrooms; cook until liquid is evaporated and mixture is soft. About 6-7 mins.

STIR: in walnuts, chives & 1 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 tsp thyme, S&P..and YES, you can taste this!!!!

SPRINKLE: 2 TBS blue cheese on each roasted Portobello mushroom then divide the sauté filling and put on top of cheese.

CUT: two 5-inch rounds ( I used a bowl) from the puff pastry (be sure it is thawed) and roll out on floured surface to about 8-10 inches in diameter. Place the stuffed mushroom in center of each round then fold the pastry edges inward, leaving a small opening at the top.  Brush each wellington with the egg wash, put back on the parchment paper and put back in oven and cook at 350 degrees until pastry is golden and puffed.  About 15-20 mins…USE  A TIMER!

Take out, let cool and then cut with a serrated knife.  Drizzle some heated blue cheese on top and voila~!!!!!!! Serve with a nice spinach salad. (go to WWW.chefboyrd2.com) for the recipe and MANY more!!!

***Thank you Cuisine at Home for the recipe*****

Chili Rellanos for 6


Chili Rellanos for 6

What you Need:

  • 10 Pablamo chilies
  • 1 lb Monterey Jack Cheese
  • 6 eggs-separated
  • ½ cup flour
  • Toothpicks
  • GLOVES!!!!!!!!!!! Trust me on this one!!!
  • 1-2 c vegetable oil
  • Paper towels
  • Large frying pan
  • Mixer

DIRECTIONS:

1.      GLOVES!!!! Have I mentioned that it would be “real” nice to have throw away gloves??!!!!

2.      Preheat oven at 425 degrees.

3.      Put the chilies on baking sheets and put in oven for 25 minutes until nice and burnt on the outsides.

4.      Take out of oven and cool. GO PUT YOUR GLOVES ON!!!! Once cooled, peel off “burnt” parts and then cut open and take out seeds.  This does NOT have to be perfect!!! Then, rinse under water and put aside.

5.      Take Monterey Jack cheese and cut into pieces (check video)

6.      Now, put the chilies on flat surface, then put cheese in the middle, fold the sides over and weave a toothpick through the sides (not piercing the cheese) No more than 3 toothpicks!!!! Again, does NOT have to be perfect!!!

7.      Put some flour on a plate or pan and then take the chilies and coat them with flour. This is important because it help keep the batter stick to the chilies. Put aside.

8.      Now, take the 6 egg whites and whip it up until peaked.  Then, fold the egg yolks into the blender and keep whipping. Next add ¼-1/2 c of flour…and keep on whipping…whip it good!!

9.      In a large frying pan, add 1-2 cups of vegetable oil so that it is 1-2 inches and heat ‘er up.

10.   Now, “WHERE ARE THOSE GLOVES”???? Put them on!!!

11.   Take the floured chili and dip it in the batter, then put it in the hot oil and cook. About a minute. Then turn it over, and do the same.  You want them golden brown. Once done, take them out and put on a paper towel and do the process again. Don’t do more than 2 at a time.

***While they are cooking, go and take the tooth picks out of the ones on the paper towel***

Remember…you put 3 in each one of them…now count..1-2-3 and make sure!!!

Now, you are ready to serve and I strongly suggest using my Spanish Sauce.  Check my blog at www.chefboyrd2.com for that recipe!!!!!

SPANISH SAUCE FOR RELLENOS

2 TBS olive oil
½ medium onion, julienne
1 TBS chopped garlic
1 jalapeno, seeded & julienne
1 red pepper, seeded & julienne
1 yellow pepper, seeded & julienne
1 orange pepper, seeded & julienne
1 roma tomato, seeded & julienne
1 (4 oz) can tomato sauce
Use same amount of water as in tomato can

Heat olive oil in a skillet to the smoking point and then add onions, peppers and tomatoes and sauté for about 2 mins. Add the garlic and sauté another minute. Add tomato sauce, water and simmer for 10 minutes. Adjust the seasoning with salt & pepper and then serve on top of chili relleno servings.

This recipe makes 4 servings.