Nacho Stuffed Tater Tots

tatertots

This month’s Kosher Connection challenge is all about the Superbowl. What kinds of snacks do you like to eat while watching the big game? On Superbowl Sunday, we typically dine on a variety of appetizers. Last year, I vaguely recall a mix of onion rings, french fries, chicken wings and beer. I’m sure there was more to it though. This year, I’m all about finding good vegetarian snacks for the big game day.

I asked my husband what he was in the mood for this year. The first thing that he came up with was some loaded nachos. I told him that nachos were too basic and we had to do better than that!

I’ve been wanting to make some homemade tater tots for a while now. A while back, there was an article by Mark Bittman in The New York Times where he showed how to make some homemade tots. I’ve been wanting to make that recipe ever since it came out. I decided that I could stuff the tater tots with some of the typical nacho toppings.

Would it work? Would it taste good? I had to find out!

I parboiled some Idaho Russet Potatoes and then grated them along with some onions. I added some salt, pepper and corn starch to the mix, as Mark Bittman suggests.

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I processed some black beans along with some fire roasted green chiles in the food processor. I mixed up that mixture with some cheese, corn and chili powder.

I placed some of the potato mixture in the palm of my hand and then a dab of the bean mixture at the center and formed it in to a traditional tater tot shape, making sure to cover the entire center with potato.

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I fried each tot lightly and then drained it and finished cooking it in the oven. It’s best to finish the baking process on a rack over a baking sheet.

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I dipped the tater tots in a salsa-yogurt mixture.

The verdict? Definitely a fun recipe!

tatertots


Nacho Stuffed Tater Tots
 
Author:

Ingredients
  • 5 Idaho Russet Potatoes
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. ground pepper
  • 1 tbsp. corn starch
  • ¼ cup corn
  • ¼ cup black beans, cooked and drained or canned
  • ¼ cup fire roasted green chiles
  • 1 tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • oil for frying
  • additional salt and pepper as needed

Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400
  2. Parboil the potatoes until tender
  3. Grate the potatoes in a large mixing bowl
  4. Stir salt, pepper and corn starch in to the potatoes
  5. In the food processor, process together the black beans, chili powder, cheese and chiles. Stir in the corn. Transfer to a small mixing bowl.
  6. Take a tablespoon of the potato mixture and place in the palm of your hand. Dab a teaspoon of the bean/cheese mixture and place in the center of the potatoes. Shape the potatoes around the bean mixture and form in to a traditional tater tot mixture. Repeat until you have used up your potatoes.
  7. Heat up the oil, about a 1-inch deep, in a fry pan.
  8. Pan fry the tots until browned.
  9. Transfer the tots to a baking sheet lined with a cooling rack.
  10. Bake the tots until desired crispness.

nacho-stuffed-tater-tots

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.

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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

Spicy Miso Ginger Soup with Mushrooms & Spinach

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We were having a get-together with some friends and I offered to bring something over. They suggested soup. I initially thought I would do something simple like my Cardamom Cauliflower Soup or perhaps my French Onion Soup. I wanted to change things up a bit though. It’s been pretty cold around here and I’ve been craving spicy Asian noodle soups. My Bon Appétit Magazine had just arrived and I was drooling over the rice noodle soup on the cover.

Having looked through various recipes for inspiration, I decided to come up with my own vegan soup recipe. I had some miso on hand as well as shiitake mushrooms. I knew I could pull something together.

I began by sautéing up some shallots, garlic and ginger in a little bit of sesame and canola oil. As they softened, I added some cubed extra firm tofu and some sliced shiitake mushrooms, along with the whites of the scallions. I let everything sear and soften. The smell coming off the pot was amazing.

I stirred in some chili garlic paste and added some vegetable broth to the pot. I then added a strip of Kombu to the broth mixture. Kombu is a type of seaweed that adds amazing flavor to soups.

Next, I stirred in some miso and tamari to the mix. I tasted the broth a bit to see if it needed additional spice. I like heat, so I added a couple of squirts of Sriracha.

Next, I added some spinach, shredded daikon and shredded carrots. The spinach cooks up fast. At that point, the soup smelled amazing and I really wanted to dig in. I let the soup simmer for about a half hour. I then ladled in to a bowl over some gluten free soba noodles.

This soup is perfect. It’s great for these cold winter days. Add some extra sriracha if you want an extra kick.

ladled-miso-ginger-soup

Spicy Miso Ginger Soup with Mushrooms & Spinach
 
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Asian, Gluten Free

Ingredients
  • ½ tbsp. rice bran oil
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 4 inch piece of ginger, peeled
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 scallions, chopped (whites and light green only)
  • ½ pound extra firm tofu, drained and cubed
  • 10 oz. shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tsp. chili garlic paste
  • 10 cups vegetable or imitation chicken broth
  • 1 6-inch strip of kombu
  • 2 tbsp. white miso paste
  • 1 tbsp. tamari or soy sauce (can adjust taste)
  • 1-2 tbsp. sriracha (optional, to taste)
  • red pepper flakes (optional, to taste)
  • 1.5 cups shredded carrot
  • 1.5 cups shredded daikon
  • 2-3 cups packed spinach leaves (could also use kale or mustard greens)
  • Soba noodles (optional, to serve)

Instructions
  1. Process the garlic and ginger in to a paste in the food processor.
  2. Heat up the oils in a heavy bottom soup pot.
  3. Add in the garlic, ginger and scallions and saute for a few minutes to soften.
  4. Add in the mushrooms and the tofu and saute for several minutes.
  5. Stir in the chili paste and add in the broth.
  6. Mix in the miso paste and tamari and taste the soup a bit. Add additional sriracha or red pepper flakes for extra heat.
  7. Add in the shredded veggies and spinach and cover the pot. Let the soup simmer for about a half hour.
  8. Serve over soba noodles.
  9. Enjoy!

Spicy-Miso-Ginger-Soup

Crispy Rice Cakes with Spicy Salmon

rice-cakes-with-salmon

My husband and I recently checked out a new sushi place in our area. My husband was blown away by this raw tuna dish I picked out. The spicy tuna was served over these crispy rice cakes. He gushed over the dish and told me that I had to cook up something similar as soon as possible.

His raw fish of choice is usually salmon.  So the next weekend, he made a beeline for the market and bought around a half a pound of sushi-grade wild salmon.

He pulled out the rice cooker and begged me to make my version of the dish.

I made some sushi rice and seasoned it. I then shaped it in to various shapes. I tried shaping it both with my hands and with a rice mold. I then pan fried it in a combination of rice bran oil and sesame oil. While frying the rice cakes, I lightly sprinkled the cakes with some soy sauce for extra flavor.

While the rice cakes were crisping up, I got to work on the salmon.

I skinned the salmon. I saved the salmon skin for sushi rolls.  I then chopped up the salmon in to small bits. I mixed the salmon with some mayonnaise, some sriracha, sesame oil and chopped scallions.

chopping-salmon

mixing-salmon

I served this mixture on top of the rice cakes. You can dip the rice cakes in additional soy sauce if desired or serve with wasabi or even more sriracha. Enjoy!

Crispy Rice Cake with Spicy Salmon
 
Author:

Ingredients
  • 1.5 cups raw sushi rice, cooked and seasoned (use this recipe)
  • .40 lbs of sushi-grade wild salmon
  • 1 tbsp. mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp. sriracha
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 4 scallions. Chopped plus extra for garnish
  • 1-2 tbsp. rice bran oil
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • soy sauce or tamari

Instructions
  1. Cook the sushi rice and season with seasoned rice vinegar.
  2. Chop up the raw salmon and place in a bowl.
  3. Mix in the mayonnaise, sriracha, sesame oil and scallions.
  4. Form the cooked sushi rice in to shapes and fry in the heated and oiled pan. Let the rice cakes brown a bit on each side. Sprinkle soy sauce over the rice cakes and brown some more. The rice cakes should be crispy.
  5. Place a dollop of the salmon mixture over each rice cake and enjoy! Serve with soy sauce, extra sriracha and/or wasabi.

rice-cakes-with-salmonwith text

Grain Free Collard Green Burritos

burritos-wrapped

I’ve been trying to make some changes in regards to what I eat this summer. As more and more amazing fruits and vegetables are available and super fresh, I am trying to consume fewer processed foods. While I do that, I am also trying to cut back on some processed grains, easing up on my intake of wheat and rice products. I feel better, have more energy and feel good about what I am eating. No worries, I still indulge a bit. Just making sure that what I put in my body is quality.

A recent vegetable share included these massive collard greens. I’ve never cooked with collard greens before. Many of the recipes I saw online and heard about from friends was all about simple sautes. I knew that I wanted to do something different with these wonderful greens, but wasn’t quite sure what.

collards

As I glanced at these ginormous leaves, I thought about using it as a wrap of sorts. Why not use it in place of a tortilla.

I quickly gathered up a few veggies, along with a can of black beans, and sautéed them up in a pan along with some spices.

While the veggies were sautéing, I washed, trimmed and steamed the collard green leaves.

I let the leaves cool for a couple minutes and then I laid them on a cutting board, added some of the bean mixture, and wrapped the leaves up like a burritos.

burritowrapping

It worked out perfectly. Will definitely be making these again.

 

Grain Free Collard Green Burritos
 
Author:

Ingredients
  • Collard Green Leaves (1 per burrito)
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 8 oz. mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. pepper
  • 2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)

Instructions
  1. Wash and trim the stems off of the collard green leaves.
  2. Bring some salted water to a boil in a small saucepan and add the washed and trimmed leaves to the pot. Steam the leaves for just a few minutes.
  3. Heat up the olive oil in a large saute pan.
  4. Add the onions and garlic and saute for a few minutes.
  5. Add the rest of the ingredients and cook another 5-7 minutes. The veggies should be soft.
  6. Lay a collard green leaf on a flat surface.
  7. Place around three tablespoons of filling in the center of a leaf.
  8. Wrap the collard green around the filling, like a burrito. Folding the sides in first and then rolling up.
  9. Serve with a salad.
  10. Enjoy!

Grain Free Collard Green Burritos

Vegetarian Tortilla Soup

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It’s been pretty cold and windy here on the East Coast. I’ve been looking for some hot and tasty dishes to warm me up.

We just celebrated Purim the other day and I wanted to have a fun and festive meal to honor the holiday. I wanted to have a fun vegetarian menu that everyone would enjoy.

I came up with vegetarian tortilla soup, make-your-own burritos with an assortment of mix-ins, fish tacos, a giant green salad and a spanish rice. I love of all of the flavors that go along with this menu.

I’ve never made a tortilla soup before. Many of my friends make it, but it’s often made with chicken or other things I don’t eat. I wanted to make this dish my own.

It turns out that I love tortilla soup. Who knew? I also wish I had made double so I could have leftovers. Lesson learned.



Vegetarian Tortilla Soup
Ingredients:

1 tbsp. Mazola corn oil
1 large onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, chopped
1 red pepper, diced
1 green pepper, diced
1 tbsp. cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tbsp. salt
3 tsp. ground black pepper
2 14 oz. cans of fire roasted tomatoes mixed
1 4oz. can green chiles, diced (or less if you can’t handle the heat)
5 cups vegetable broth
1 medium zucchini, diced
1 cup corn (frozen is fine)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 tbsp. corn oil
corn tortillas
cilantro, chopped
avocado, sliced
cheese, optional

Directions:

Heat up the oil in a large soup pot.  Add in the chopped onion and garlic. Cook a couple of minutes.

Add in the diced peppers and the spices and cook for another 2 minutes.

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Add in the canned tomatoes and chiles as well as the soup broth.

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Add in the zucchini, corn and black beans.

Let the mixture come to a boil. Turn the heat down to medium-low and cover. Cook for about 45 minutes or so.

With an immersion blender, puree some of the soup. It should still be a little bit chunky.

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At this point, you can serve the soup right away, or you can put it away for later. I like when it sits for a half a day in the fridge to let the flavors develop more.

In preparation for serving, cut your corn tortillas in to strips.

Pan fry the tortillas in a small amount of corn oil for a couple of minutes on each side. You just want them to crisp up a little.

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Serve your soup with some sliced avocado, lime wedges, chopped cilantro and the tortilla strips.

Enjoy!

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