Creamy White Bean Soup with Swiss Chard

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I had a huge amount of swiss chard in my kitchen. I was going to turn it into a stir fry, but the wintery weather got the better of me. I decided to come up with a soup recipe that would work with what I had on hand.

swiss-chard-2

My daughter loves spinach in her soup. I had a hunch that the swiss chard would be a good stand-in. So I got to work.

I sauteed some onions and garlic in some olive oil and added in some rosemary and two cans of cannellini beans.

beans

I then added some vegetable broth to the mixture and let it come to a boil. I let the soup simmer on the stove on low for about an hour.

While the bean soup cooked, I worked on the swiss chard. I chopped up some washed swiss chard. Then, I sauteed some shallots and garlic with some salt and pepper. I used lots of garlic. I added the chopped swiss chard to the pan and let that cook for a few minutes. Swiss chard takes about 5 minutes or so to be cooked. Once it was softened, I set it aside for when the soup was done.

swiss-chard-cooking

Once the beans were cooked through, I took out my immersion blender and pureed the soup mixture. I made sure to puree everything, giving it a velvety and creamy texture. Once that was done, I added the swiss chard to the pot.

soup-pot

This soup took about an hour from start to finish. Woot woot! And my daughter approved. She’s my toughest critic!



 

Creamy White Bean Soup with Swiss Chard
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 tsp. salt
  • 3 tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • 3 tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
For the Swiss Chard:
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 5-6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. ground pepper
  • 1 big bunch of swiss chard, stems trimmed off, washed and chopped (about 4-5 overflowing cups)
  • red pepper flakes (optional)
  • additional salt and pepper as needed
Instructions
  1. Start by heating up the olive oil in a medium size soup pot.
  2. Add in the onions and garlic, drained beans, salt, pepper and rosemary and saute another 5-7 minutes.
  3. You want the garlic and onions to soften a bit and get fragrant.
  4. Add in the vegetable broth and bring to a boil.
  5. Cover and let the mixture simmer.
  6. While the beans cook, work on the swiss chard.
  7. In a large saute pan, heat up the olive oil.
  8. Add in the shallots and the garlic and cook for a couple of minutes.
  9. Add in the chopped swiss chard, the salt and pepper and stir a bit and let it soften - stirring a every couple of minutes.
  10. The swiss chard process should take about 5-7 minutes.
  11. Turn off the heat and set the swiss chard to the side.
  12. Let the bean soup mixture cook for a total of about an hour. The beans should be pretty soft.
  13. Using your immersion blender, puree the soup completely. The beans will give the soup a very creamy and velvety texture.
  14. Once the soup is pureed, stir in the cooked swiss chard.
  15. Serve and enjoy!

white-bean-soup

Rosemary, Fig & Goat Cheese Latkes

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Chanukah starts tomorrow night. It only hit me when I glanced at my calendar on Outlook and it told me that I had to light the first candle on Tuesday.  I stifled a gasp. I’m totally not caught up with holiday preparations. I need to buy Chanukah and Christmas presents. Need to buy presents for my kid’s teachers and therapists. I need to sort out a chanukah party menu. The list goes on. I will breathe after December 23. That’s when I start my staycation.

Chanukah is already in the air though. Even if it hasn’t begun. The Chanukah spirit arrived last week when I made those delicious golden beet latkes. Today, I have another fun Chanukah treat and I’m sure I’ll have some more goodies for you through the holiday.

I’m so excited to share these latkes with you. The idea for these latkes came about one evening when I had some people over for a wine and cheese night. I served an appetizer that had some roasted figs with rosemary and goat cheese on them. As I worked through the flavors, and loved them, I knew these flavors had to become a latke! So here we are today!

I soaked some dried figs in some port wine and brought some goat cheese to room temperature. You can let the figs soak for about 20 minutes, or you can get distracted like I did and keep them soaking for an hour. You want them to soften and plump up. I chopped up the figs along with some shallots and mixed them with the goat cheese. I set that bowl aside.

goat-cheese-and-figsfilling

The potato process needs to happen fast as you want them to keep their light color. I washed and peeled the potatoes. I shredded the potatoes, along with some onion, garlic and more shallots in the food processor using the shredding disc. Next, I rinsed the grated potato mixture and squeezed out all of the liquid.

I placed the mixture in to a large mixing bowl and stirred in some eggs, almond flour, salt, pepper and fresh chopped rosemary.

potato-mixture

Next, I heated up some oil in a large fry pan.

I placed a thin layer of potato mixture in my hand and then placed some fig and goat cheese layer on top of it. You want a decent amount of goat cheese, but make sure that there’s an edge of potato around it. I topped the goat cheese with another thin layer of potatoes. You want the latke to be thin so that it gets crispy and cooked through, but you also want the cheese to shine through. The cheese should be completely covered by the potato mixture.

stuffed-latkes

I fried the latkes until crisp on both sides. The trick with latkes is to place them in the pan and leave them alone until you see the shredded potatoes begin to brown at the edges. The browning will poke through. But don’t peek and don’t flip until you can see that it’s very crisp.

frying-latkes

Drain the finished latkes on a cooling rack over a paper towel lined cookie sheet.

drain-latkes

It’s best to serve fresh. But if you have to make these ahead of time, you can keep them warm in a 250-degree oven.

These latkes are out of this world. Because of the creamy goat cheese with figs inside, you don’t need any sauce or sour cream on top. There’s a huge amount of flavor all packed in to the latke! It’s amazing! My first thought as I sunk my teeth in to the latke was that it was “off the hook!” And I never say that! It was that good though. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!



Rosemary, Fig & Goat Cheese Latkes
 
Author:
Ingredients
Fig & Goat Cheese Filling
  • 7 dried figs
  • 1 cup of port wine or other semi dry red wine
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 4 oz. goat cheese (chevre)
Latke Blend
  • 4 large red potatoes, washed and peeled nand quartered
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 shallot
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 4 tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • additional salt and pepper to taste
  • 8 tbsp. almond flour or all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • Oil for frying
Instructions
  1. Soak the figs in the wine for at least 20 minutes.
  2. Drain the figs and chop them finely. In a small bowl, mix the figs with the chopped shallot and goat cheese. Set the bowl aside.
  3. In a food processor fitted with a shredding disc, grate the potatoes, onions, garlic and shallot.
  4. Rinse and drain the grated potato mixture. Squeeze out all of the liquid.
  5. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  6. Mix the rosemary, salt, pepper, egg and flour into the potato mixture.
  7. Heat about a ½ an inch of oil in a large frying pan.
  8. Form the potato mixture in to a small thin patty in your hand and place a tablespoon or so of goat cheese filling in the middle. Cover it with a small thin layer of potato mixture and seal along the edges.
  9. Fry in the oil until browned and crisp on both sides.
  10. Drain on a cooling rack or paper towels.
  11. Enjoy!

latkes-tower

Golden Beet Latkes + Hamilton Beach Giveaway

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So I woke up this week and realized that it’s already the middle of December. The snow clued me in a little, but the giant 8 ft. tall santa and reindeer on my neighbor’s lawn is probably what really did me in. Anyways, it’s December and the holidays are almost here and I’m over the moon about it. Can’t you tell?

With Chanukah almost here, I need to continue my tradition of coming up with some new latke recipes. On last year’s menu, there were some carrot ginger latkes and some wild mushroom & roasted garlic latkes. Both were amazing. How could I top that? I really wanted to go for something somewhat simple for my first latke of the season. You really have to ease into it. I decided to turn to one of my favorite root veggies. Golden beets. I definitely don’t show enough love for the humble golden beet often enough. So a latke it must be.

beets

Hamilton Beach recently sent me their Stack and Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor to check out and use in my holiday cooking. What better way to test out a food processor then to abuse using it during my latke making fest?! It really is the perfect way to check out what it’s made of.

hamilton beach

I loved the simplicity of the set up as I took it out of the box. Everything just stacked together. There was very little question as to what piece goes where. I also loved how the shredding disc is reversible. One side slices and one side shreds. Another thing I noted as I took hold of the new appliance was how light it is. It didn’t feel cumbersome in my arms or on my kitchen counter.

When it got down to making the machine work, I was also pleasantly surprised and impressed. Beets are much firmer than potatoes, so I figured that shredding the beets would be a pretty good test. When I placed the beets in the feeding tube and pushed down, the beets were shredded in seconds! The machine was really strong and worked really well!

shredded beets

Later in the day, I tested the machine with some dried fruit and nuts. I tested with that mixture because I knew it would be difficult to cut through. and it’s what I used for charoset at Pesach. If this machine can handle my Passover Charoset, then it definitely is a winner! And lo and behold, it worked! It attacked the dried apricots and figs with gusto!

I didn’t think that a budget-friendly machine would work for me, but so glad that this Stack and Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor works well! This food processor would be the perfect addition to my year-round kitchen gear AND for my pesach kitchen gear. I love how this machine processes the food so fast and is so easy to handle. I also love that it comes with the extra shredding and slicing disc.  I would definitely recommend this food processor to anyone! Good news for you, I’ve got one of these Hamilton Beach Stack and Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor to give away!

Anyways, back to these golden beet latkes.

Here’s what I did.

I washed and peeled the beets and onions and then I quartered them. I processed them in the food processor with the shredding disc.

I transferred the mixture to a bowl and then added the chopped garlic, chopped dill, salt and pepper, egg and the flour. I mixed everything together well.

I then heated up some oil in my fry pan, shaped the mixture in to latke patties and then fried them until browned and crispy on both sides. I drained the latkes on paper towels.

latkes frying

I served the latkes with sour cream, though next time, I think I will serve them with a nice lemon aioli.

These latkes are delicious.

Check out the recipe below and don’t forget to enter to win your own Stack and Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor!



vertical latkes

Golden Beet Latkes
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 3 golden beets
  • 2 small onions
  • 2 tbsp. fresh dill, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 6 tbsp. almond flour, (you can also use regular all-purpose flour)
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • Additional salt and pepper to taste
  • Oil for frying
  • - See more at: http://confident-cook.com/2014/12/golden-beet-latkes.html#sthash.8QM4ZrrJ.dpuf
Instructions
  1. Wash, peel and quarter the beets
  2. peel and quarter the onions
  3. Using the shredding disc on your food processor, shred the beets and onions.
  4. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and add the rest of the ingredients
  5. Mix everything together well
  6. Form beet mixture in to thin patties and fry in hot oil until browned on both sides.
  7. Drain on paper towels.
  8. Serve with some sour cream and dill or a lemon aioli.
  9. Enjoy!

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**Hamilton Beach provided me with this food processor to review, but all opinions and the recipe are my own.

Tuscan Kale & Cauliflower Curry with Chickpeas

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If you’re anything like me, you run in to roadblocks in the kitchen almost every day. What to make, ingredients to have on hand, cooking time, etc. It’s life. We get by. Even if dinner ends up as cereal with milk, there usually aren’t too many disgruntled customers.

If you follow my dinner posts on Instagram, you probably already recognize some of the usual suspects in my kitchen. From throwing in an egg for protein to tossing every vegetable in the pan – dinner can be anything. Play with the flavor.  Swap out the veggies. Switch your proteins around. It’s all good.

You also know that I love curry. From a haphazard cabbage curry to a polished palak paneer, curry rocks. When served over Basmati rice, it is perfect. It’s one of those dishes that spring from nowhere on a busy evening. You can take advantage of whatever fresh vegetables you have on hand and it’s quick to prepare. Add in a protein and go to flavortown and you’re there. Your dish has arrived. Dinner is served.

Well it happens that way in my head. A few more steps are thrown in. But like I said above, a great curry can be born from whatever you have lying in your fridge. Well, most of the stuff. Don’t try and make a curry out of marshmallow fluff! Did I just admit to having marshmallow fluff in my house? Oops.

This curry I’m sharing with you, like the others, was born out of necessity. Some amazing Tuscan Kale was taking over some valuable real estate in my fridge and I didn’t want it to go bad. My husband wanted something with chickpeas. I wanted the kale. It’s cooperation. Or something like that. Regardless, it tasted great, it’s a great vegan curry and it cooks up super fast.

I heated up a large pan with some olive oil and add in some onion, garlic and traditional curry spices.

Next I added the cauliflower and it it cook a few minutes to soften. About 5 minutes.

I then added the Kale and Chickpeas. The kale will wilt pretty quickly.

After that, I added the canned tomatoes and some vegetable broth.

I let the mixture cook for another 5-10 minutes – letting all of the flavors meld while simmering.

While everything cook, I had some basmati rice going in my rice cooker.

Dinner took about 20 minutes to cook. It was perfect – especially for these chilly days.



Hope you enjoy!

Tuscan Kale and Cauliflower Curry with Chickpeas
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tbsp. curry powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • half teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tsp teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1-2 tsp. chili flakes (optional)
  • 1 small head of cauliflower, washed and broken up in to florets
  • 1 bunch of Tuscan Kale, washed and chopped
  • 1 can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes
  • ½ cup vegetable broth
Instructions
  1. Heat up the oil in a large pan.
  2. Add in the onions, ginger and garlic and let soften a bit. About 2-3 minutes on medium-high heat.
  3. Stir in the spices and add the cauliflower florets.
  4. Cook about 4-5v minutes to allow the cauliflower to soften.
  5. Add in the kale and the chickpeas. Stir well to mix up the spices. Allow the kale to wilt a bit. About 2-3 minutes.
  6. Add in the crushed tomatoes and vegetable broth. Stir well and simmer for 3-5 minutes.
  7. Taste and season as necessary with salt and pepper.
  8. Serve with warm Basmati rice.
  9. Enjoy!

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Arugula Pesto

pasta-with-arugula-pesto

If my 10-year-old self could see me now, I wonder what she’d say.

I was a picky eater with a pretty developed flavor palate. My parents are foodies, but at 10, I was anything but. My parents had a rule that we had to try everything. We couldn’t just stick out our tongue. I remember several evenings around the family dinner table where it was a total battle of wills to just take a bite of the mahi mahi or two bites of the curry. Who knew?

At age 10, all I wanted was a crunchy iceberg salad at dinner. Instead, I had a plate of mesclun and arugula greens. I remember the requests to “finish the arugula on the plate and then….” I didn’t believe in arugula at age 10. Why does this strange lettuce have to have so much flavor?! Arugula, really?? Who knew that I would grow up to be this person that seeks out arugula. Heck, I even grow arugula on my fire escape! That’s how much I love it!

In the off season, I tend to buy the bags of baby arugula from Trader Joe’s. Arugula is in season now – as are a variety of other greens. And I’m in salad green heaven.

Arugula is a fantastic green characterized by its amazing slightly peppery flavor. It’s also sometimes called roquette or rocket greens.

fresh-arugula

Last week, as I came upon the farmer’s market outside my office, I spotted some beautiful greens and I had to have them. I eagerly bought two bunches. Of course, when I came home and picked up my CSA, there were a couple more bunches. This whole lot of arugula was in addition to a bag of baby arugula sitting in my fridge. Um. I think I had more arugula that I needed. I mean, I love salads, but this much arugula was making me twitchy.

I decided to make a pesto out of the greens. My husband usually turns down a basil pesto, but I had a hunch that the lighter flavor of the arugula leaves would be more to his liking. And I was right!

I washed and dried a few cups of the greens and pulsed it in my Cuisinart along with some garlic, lemon juice, pine nuts, salt, pepper and olive oil. It took all of two minutes.

Arugula-cuisinart

I added the pesto to some pappardelle that I tossed with some sautéed shallots, garlic, mushrooms, chickpeas and additional lemon juice. I sprinkled on some red pepper flakes and ground black pepper and dinner was served. Dinner was a success. I stored the rest of the pesto in my freezer. I am totally making this again. If only arugula season was year-round.

Hope you enjoy this as much as I did!

Arugula Pesto
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 3.5 cups of arugula leaves (you can include some of the stems), washed
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • ½ cup toasted pine nuts
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • ¾ cup olive oil
  • additional salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Place everything except for the olive oil in to the bowl of a food processor.
  2. Process everything then slowly pour in the olive oil until everything is processed and mixed together.
  3. Taste the pesto and add additional salt and pepper as needed.
  4. Enjoy! Add this pesto pasta or use as a pizza topping. The options are endless.

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Curried Spinach and Chickpea Veggie Burgers

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Let me tell you something about myself. I love veggie burgers. I often judge a restaurant by three things; their veggie burgers, their grilled cheese and their onion rings. I know they sound like simple dishes, but often, they’re what I turn to when I go out to eat. And if those dishes are not good, uh oh.

So I’m always trying out new flavor combinations for veggie burgers at home. It’s a great weeknight dinner and they tend to freeze well for future meals.

This spinach and chickpea burger fell together. I was in the mood for a falafel flavor without the falafel and the mess it comes with. I needed simple. I also had some spinach I wanted to use up and I didn’t want to turn it in to a salad.

I’ve been keeping my Cuisinart food processor out on the counter lately, so these came together super fast.

I mixed up a can of chickpeas, an onion, some garlic and the spinach in the food processor. I then added some spices.

I formed them in to burger shapes and then lightly fried the burgers in a pan that was coated lightly in olive oil. I just wanted them to brown and hold together.

I then placed them in an oven at 375 to finish cooking.

I enjoyed these with a salad, while my kids devoured them on a sandwich thin along with extra spinach and sliced avocado and French fries on the side. Hope you enjoy these as much as we did!


Curried Chickpea and Spinach Burgers
 
Author:
Recipe type: Burger, Sandwich, Veggie Burger
Ingredients
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 can chickpeas
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 bag of baby spinach – about 3 cups
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • 2 tsp. curry powder
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Mix everything together in a food processor.
  2. Form mixture in to burgers.
  3. Pan fry in a large sauté pan.
  4. Finish cooking in an oven at 375. It should bake for around 10 minutes or so.
  5. Serve them dressed with your preferred burger toppings. Enjoy!

spinach-and-chickpea-burgers

Sriracha Chex Mix

Sriracha Chex Mix

I love Chex Mix. Chex Mix is one of my favorite snacks. Only homemade Chex Mix though. I stock up on Chex Cereals whenever I see them on sale at the grocery store. I’m always trying to come up with new flavor options for the wonderful snack mix.

I’ve made it with Creole seasoning, I loved it with curry seasoning and just recently, I decided I needed to make a Sriracha Chex Mix. Who doesn’t like sriracha? It seemed like it would be the perfect addition to this snack mix. I was right.

In a giant mixing bowl, I mixed up the Rice Chex, Corn Chex, cashews, almonds and peanuts.

I mixed up some melted butter, sriracha, sesame oil,  and tamari.

mixing-chex-mix-

I processed some garlic and ginger in my Cuisinart Mini-Prep so it became a paste and then added it to the bowl with the butter and the sriracha.

I poured the mixture over the Chex and nut mixture. I stirred everything well.

mixing-chexk-mix

I placed everything on a rimmed baking sheet and then I baked it in the oven at a low heat for an hour. I stirred it up every 15 minutes or so.

I then let the mixture cool and then sampled a bit. Oh yeah.

This Chex Mix came with us to our New Year’s Eve party. It’s perfect for any party or just for casual snacking. I love the kick of the sriracha!

Hope you enjoy!


Sriracha Chex Mix
 
Author:
Recipe type: Snack, Gluten Free
Ingredients
  • 6 cups Rice Chex
  • 6 cups Corn Chex
  • 1 cup roasted unsalted cashews
  • 1 cup roasted peanutes
  • 1 cup toasted almonds slivers
  • 1 stick of butter, melted
  • ⅓ cup Sriracha
  • ¼ cup tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3-4 inch piece ginger, peeled
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 250
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry cereals and the nuts.
  3. In a smaller bowl, combine the melted butter, tamari, sriracha and the sesame oil.
  4. Puree the garlic and ginger in a food processor and then mix in to the sriracha mixture.
  5. Stir the melted butter and sriracha mixture in to the cereal mixture and stir well, making sure that all nuts and cereal pieces are coated well.
  6. Transfer to rimmed baking sheets.
  7. Bake in the oven for an hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  9. Enjoy!

Sriracha Chex Mix

Wild Mushroom & Roasted Garlic Latkes

mushroom-and-potato-latkes

We light the first candle on our menorah for Chanukah tonight. My kids are so excited. Dreidels and chocolate gelt have already begun to make an appearance in our house. The kids are curious what we have in store for the holiday. Chanukah is always a fun time in our home. As a kid, I patiently waited for Chanukah to start so we could light candles and open some presents. The light of the menorah against the dark night is always beautiful.

Chanukah is also one of my favorite foodie holidays. To commemorate the miracle of the oil in the ancient temple, there’s the tradition to eat fried foods during the holiday. Who doesn’t love fried foods? That Chanukah happens to fall at the same time as Thanksgiving in the US – extra foodie fun!

I try to come up with new latke ideas each year. Some years I’ve focused on a different root veggies, other years I’ve added some herbs. This latke idea came to me just the other day as I was making dinner. Mushrooms are one of my favorite veggies. Why not try and add them to latkes? I had a bag of dried wild mushrooms that I thought would complement the latkes very well. I paired the wild mushrooms with some sage and roasted garlic. Latke perfection! I’m so glad I made these right away!

I roasted a head of garlic and then I soaked the mushrooms in boiling water.

soak-mushrooms

I shredded the potatoes, mushrooms and onions in my Cuisinart food processor. I then mixed everything together and added some eggs, potatoes and sage.

I fried up the latkes and then drained them on a wire rack lined with paper towels.

fry-in-oil

drain-on-towels

These latkes were a huge hit! I highly recommend serving them with sour cream. Enjoy and Have a Happy Chanukah!


Wild Mushroom & Roasted Garlic Latkes
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 head of garlic, roasted
  • 5 Idaho Russet Potatoes
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 2 cups of dried wild mushrooms
  • 5 oz. cremini mushooms
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • ½ cup flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • oil for frying
  • additional salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400. Cut off the top quarter-inch of the head of garlic to expose the cloves. Drizzle some olive oil over the garlic and wrap in foil. Place in oven for 30 minutes and roast. Then allow to cool.
  2. Rinse the dried mushrooms and soak them in boiling water for about 15 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  3. Peel and quarter the onions and potatoes.
  4. Rinse and quarter the Cremini mushrooms.
  5. With a shredding disc, process the potatoes, onion and mushrooms in the food processor.
  6. Transfer to a colander and squeeze as much liquid out of the potatoes as possible. I sometimes like to place them in a tea towel and squeeze more water from there like I did with this latke recipe.
  7. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.
  8. Squeeze out the roasted garlic cloves in to the bowl.
  9. Add in the chopped sage leaves.
  10. Stir in the eggs, flour, salt and pepper.
  11. Heat up the oil in a deep fry pan.
  12. From potato mixture in to patties and fry. Flip the latke over when you see the edges begin to brown.
  13. Transfer the finished latke to a rack positioned over paper towels to drain and cool.
  14. These latkes are great with sour cream.
  15. Enjoy!

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White Bean and Kale Soup

white-bean-soup

My daughter came home from a friend’s house and excitedly told me all about the Olive Garden soup she had just eaten for dinner. I don’t think I’ve been to Olive Garden since I was about ten-years-old. I definitely didn’t remember any soup. The friend’s family knows that we don’t eat at Olive Garden and they understand that Gila is a vegetarian. After a moment of panic, I composed myself and asked her to tell me more. She happily told me about this amazing soup filled with spinach, potatoes and delicious broth. For days after, she asked me if I had made my version of the soup yet. I had just finished a marathon soup cooking session. My freezer was already bursting with various soups. I wasn’t ready to make another soup.

As they often do, circumstances change. In the middle of the work day, I quickly texted my husband and asked him what he thought I should prepare for dinner. With a groan, he told me all about his two root canals from earlier that morning and then fast forwarded to the part where he told me that all his jaw could handle was some warm soup. He told me not to worry. He assured me that he would just venture out to a local take-out place and buy something. I couldn’t let that happen. I decided that this was the night to make the soup of Gila’s dreams.

I had some kale in the fridge that needed to be used up.  I decided that it would be perfect in place of the spinach. I also had a ziploc bag of already cooked white beans in the freezer. I set off to make my version of this Olive Garden Soup. Amazingly, I was successful. Gila went to bed with a full and happy belly and Jason happily had three bowls of soup. This hearty soup is a winner and will definitely be made again!


White Bean and Kale Soup
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 carrots, cut up
  • 4 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • 3 small potatoes, peeled and sliced (I used purple, but you can use your preference)
  • 1 bunch of kale, washed and trimmed and chopped
  • 2 cans of white beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 2 tsp. basil
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 2 tsp. thyme
  • 6 cups of vegetable broth
  • 3 cups water
  • Additional salt and pepper as needed
  • Soup noodles (alphabet or any variety will do) optional
Instructions
  1. Heat up the olive oil in a large soup pot
  2. Add in the onions, carrots, celery and garlic and cook a few minutes to soften.
  3. Stir in the salt and pepper
  4. Add in the kale and the potatoes and the kale and cook a couple of minutes
  5. Add white beans, tomatoes, broth and the water - along with the spices
  6. Bring the soup to a boil
  7. Turn the heat down and let simmer while covered for at least an hour.
  8. If you'd like some noodles in your soup, add them about 15 minutes before serving.
  9. Taste and adjust seasoning.
  10. Serve and enjoy!

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Red Miso Braised Baby Bok Choy

miso-braised-baby-bok-choy

This vegetable side dish was inspired by a walk through my local farmer’s market a while back. As new fresh veggies come in to the market, I get more and more excited to bring new stuff home.

I also  recently went on a shopping frenzy at my local Korean grocery store. I managed to pick up my favorite kind of miso, red miso. Red miso is a rich fermented soy bean paste that lends itself to heartier foods. It’s perfect for a braise and bok choy works well with it.

This bok choy comes together in just a few simple steps. We served this with some grilled salmon. I hope you enjoy!

Red Miso Braised Baby Bok Choy
 
Author:
Recipe type: side dish, vegetable
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil (you could also use peanut oil or canola oil)
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. ginger, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. garlic, chopped
  • 5-7 medium heads of baby boy choy, washed and trimmed
  • 2 tbsp. red miso
  • ½ cup vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp. tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. red pepper flakes
Instructions
  1. Heat up the oil in a large pan.
  2. Add in the shallot, garlic and ginger. Cook a few minutes to soften.
  3. Add the cut bok choy to the pan and sear on both sides - about two minutes.
  4. In a small bowl, mix the miso with the vegetable broth and the tamari.
  5. Pour miso mixture over the bok choy. Cover the pan for 2-3 minutes to cook the boy choy a little.
  6. Add red pepper flakes to taste.
  7. Remove from heat and serve.
  8. Enjoy!

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