Chickpea-tahini Salad

Chickpeas are a delicious legume that can be served in many different ways.

Of course, hummus is one of my favorite ways of enjoying them, but, also, I sometimes just heat a little olive oil, add some garlic powder and crushed red pepper and toss in a can of drained chickpeas until warm.  It makes a nice side dish for just about anything.

They can also be roasted with any type of flavoring that you desire, and then used as a snack.  Very delicious and really pretty healthy.

This week’s recipe from ” Everyday Dorie”  has a totally different take on chickpeas, mainly making a salad with additional veggies, such as chopped red pepper and red onion,  but the key ingredient is the Tahini dressing, which is so good.  (And I mean good). Checking our website for “Cookthebookfridays”  I noticed a few suggestions for using the dressing on tuna fish and other items, and I can definitely see doing that.

I prepared the dressing in the morning and finally put the whole recipe together by the afternoon.  I could not believe how delicious this turned out.

I followed the directions for the whole recipe, however, I only used two cans of chickpeas (about four cups)  and it worked perfectly.

This is a great recipe  for summer barbecues or anytime actually, and as Dorie said it is better the next day.  I am looking forward to trying this tomorrow when it has had a chance to chill and blend.

Definitely will be added to my  recipe file.fullsizeoutput_1380

 

Pasta with cabbage, winter squash and walnuts

I wasn’t too sure if I would like the combination of  these ingredients, but surprisingly,  they were really good together.

For the winter squash I chose a butternut squash,  something I really enjoy, and in place of cabbage, I went with kale instead.   Unfortunately I did not have dried cranberries but used a few dried cherries.

Since I was cooking for one I only prepared 1/4 of the recipe, and even that was quite a lot of food.  But, I love leftovers and this is perfect with a little pasta water that I saved to reheat it.

Many times  when I cook pasta,  (especially spaghetti, angel hair, linguine, etc.) I almost always have leftovers and I save some of the pasta water.  It’s  a perfect way to create a delicious leftover dish adding the veggies as in this recipe.

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I added two make-up recipes from December.

First:       Gingered-turkey meatball soup.  Unfortunately, this recipe  did not work for me, but it was interesting.

Second:    Sweet and Smoky Roasted Carrots.   These were so good and I loved the yogurt sauce, great for dipping.fullsizeoutput_1356IMG_4311

 

Pasta with Shrimp

Pasta with shrimp, zucchini, lemon and herbs makes for an interesting recipe.

I chose tri-color rotini  pasta to go with the shrimp just to brighten up the dish and then added thinly sliced and quartered  green and yellow zucchini.

After zesting the lemons and saving the juice,   I tossed the remains of the lemons in the pasta water to boil.  I personally did not think it was necessary as  there was so much lemon flavoring to be added later.  However, that is just my opinion.

After cooking the shrimp and the zucchini,  I set them aside while the pasta was cooking.  Reserving some of the pasta water, I drained it and added it back into the fry pan along with the rest of the oil, butter and the reserved water. I then returned the shrimp and veggies combining all.  Added a bit of salt and pepper plus cayenne and let it all cook for a minute or two.  Finally, the tomatoes were added and topped with herbs and tossed.

The end result was pretty impressive to look at and also quite tasty.fullsizeoutput_1347IMG_4300

Apple Custard Crisp

Dorie gives us two alternative ways to prepare the streusel.   The first is a simple mix of flour, sugar, brown sugar and cinnamon plus cold butter and vanilla.    To make the more traditional streusel you add rolled oats  to basically the same ingredients, but the portions vary.

Since I still had some rolled oats leftover after making our Chewy Chocolate Chip cookies I decided to go with that version and was so pleased that I did.  The streusel was not as sweet and complimented the apple crisp.

After filling the pie plate with apples I whisked together the cream with the brown sugar, spices and eggs to blend and added vanilla.  I then poured the mix over the apples and covered it with the streusel.  There was quite a bit of streusel so I decided to use it all and cover dish completely and I was not sorry at all, it was delicious.

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After scooping out the crisp into a serving dish I added vanilla ice cream on top and it was so good together.

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Such a delicious dessert,  and at this time of the year when we have an abundance of  apples everywhere, it’s the perfect time to prepare this recipe.

Lightning Fast Tahini Pork

This is such a delicious and simple meal that is so enjoyable, and once you have all the ingredients prepped,  it comes together quickly.

Rather than using harissa,  I substituted Chile powder and added the ginger, cumin, and turmeric into a large bowl  and coated the meat thoroughly.

I browned the pieces on all sides in the frying pan and then added the honey to coat and then deglazed the pan with the vinegar and water.

After adding the tahini mixture I  let it cook until the pork was completely done.

Additional sesame seeds and fresh cilantro were added to finish the dish.

I served cooked spinach as a side, following the photo from Dorie, and it was perfect.

This is another wonderful way to cook a simple pork tenderloin, but with fantastic results.

A perfect dinner that will be repeated.IMG_3683

Miso-Glazed Salmon

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This week’s recipe for Mizo-glazed salmon was delicious, plus the fact that is so easy to prepare and cooks quickly.    The marinade, which consists of miso, honey, lemon juice and soy sauce was a nice change, one that I really enjoyed.

Since I am only cooking for (1 ) now most days,   when I purchase salmon at Costco  I  cut it into individual pieces  and freeze each piece separately,  that way I can quickly defrost just one  piece for dinner without leftovers.

I made the marinade and let the salmon rest for an hour or so and then cooked it in a hot oven for 10 minutes.   I served it with a side of coleslaw and the combination was just perfect for me.

 

 

 

Chicken and salad Milanese style

I have been making chicken cutlets for years  and I had no idea that the technique was called Milanese style,   meaning breaded and sautéed.

It is a perfect recipe for  weeknight dinner  when you are on a busy schedule, so easy to prepare and it cooks up in minutes.  It is also a great and quick way to prepare chicken parm., with some added mozzarella cheese and spaghetti sauce.

Adding the salad greens on top of the chicken really gives  it a nice flavor along with the sliced lemon.    I used baby greens with chopped red pepper and celery.  I skipped the cucumber in the mix because it is not a favorite.

I’ve prepared this a few times before and it is always a winner.

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Chewy Chocolate chip cookies

I could not decide if I wanted to make the complete recipe for these cookies or not.  However,  I decided to take Dorie’s advice and freeze some of the prepared dough. I know they will come in handy when friends drop by.

I liked the addition of the rolled oats since it gave a totally different flavor to a chocolate chip cookie.

When it came to adding the sugar I used the lesser amount of each because I knew it would be sweet enough with the chocolate.   I did use chocolate morsels rather than chopping up bars of chocolate, since that was on hand.

After mixing the batter together I chilled it in the refrigerator for a while and when I was ready to bake the cookies I could not budge the dough.  It was so solid!     I finally left it out for awhile and eventually was able to get some scooped up to look like a cookie.   It did work out well because it melted perfectly in the oven and did not spread too much.

I made the rest of the dough into balls and flash  froze them on a cookie sheet and then put them in a plastic bag for the future.

I am giving this recipe a thumbs up for their delicious taste.fullsizeoutput_12ba

 

Tomato and Peach panzanella

I’m really happy that this recipe was chosen for this week since all the fruits and vegetables are at their peak for deliciousness.

There are many variations of panzanella around, some people add mozzarella cheese, others use various fruits, etc.   However,  I think the original idea of using  leftover bread and tomatoes was a perfect way to not waste food.

I used a loaf of ciabatta bread that was toasted in the oven with a sprinkle  of garlic powder,  salt and pepper and then  tossed it in the oil.

Two perfectly ripe nectarines were used for this dish and then I added the tomatoes and  the bread.   Sprinkled lemon zest over everything and added the lemon juice to the bowl.  I then added the onion, with the salt and let is rest.  Finally  the oil and vinegar  go into the mix and it is  seasoned with additional  salt and pepper.  Give it a stir and let it rest for a bit so that all the flavors blend together.

Fresh basil is added for decoration and extra flavor.

A perfect summer treat that goes well with any type of meat or fish.

I will certainly make this again before the season ends so I can enjoy all the delicious farm fresh fruits and vegetables.

 

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Fresh-off the cob corn chowder

This was a perfect recipe for August since the fresh corn is plentiful right now and it also gave us a chance to go to the farm stand.  The corn there is picked  a few times during the day so you know it is definitely fresh.  I also picked up some delicious tomatoes to make a tomato sandwich with mayo,  salt and pepper.  Nothing like it.

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For this recipe I prepped  all the vegetables and divided  them for the soup and cooked the first batch of veggies until soft, then added the herbs with the cobs and water.  The potatoes were added and cooked until soft and removing half  to be added in later. The cobs were discarded, but they certainly give a lot of flavor to the soup.

I sautéed the balance of the cut up vegetables,  and cooked the bacon until crisp.

Using an immersion blender, I tried to make the soup as smooth as possible before adding in the rest of the vegetables and the crisp bacon.

Surprisingly, even though it is summertime,  this was a light and delicious soup that is so perfect for this time of the year.

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