Leek and Potato Soup
2 celery stalks
2 medium onions
1 pound leeks
2 cloves of garlic
1 3/4 quarts chicken or vegetable broth, preferably organic
1 pound potatoes
olive oil sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Peel and roughly slice the carrots. Slice the celery. Peel and roughly chop the onions. Cut the ends off the leeks, quarter them lengthways, wash them under running water, and cut them into 1/4-inch slices. Peel and slice the garlic. Put the broth in a saucepan and heat until boiling. Place a large saucepan on a high heat and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add all your chopped and sliced ingredients and mix together with a wooden spoon.
Cook for around 10 minutes with the lid askew, until the carrots have softened, but are still holding their shape, and the onion and leeks are lightly golden. Peel the potatoes and cut them into 1/4-inch dice. Add the boiling broth to the vegetables. Add your potatoes. Give the soup a good stir and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes with the lid on.
Remove the pan from the heat . Season with salt and pepper. Serve like this or pulse until smooth using an immersion blender or liquidizer. Divide between your serving.
Eggs In A Nest
This recipe makes dinner for a family of four, but can easily be cut in half or used for breakfast substituting toast for the rice. Don’t be afraid to experiment with it .
2 cups uncooked brown rice
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic minced
2-3 carrots, finely chopped
1/2 cup dried tomatoes
1 bunch chard, coarsley chopped leaves and finely chopped stems
Cook the rice with 4 cups of water in a covered pot while the other ingredients are being prepared.
Add a few tablespoons olive oil to a 10-12-inch cast-iron skillet. Sauté the onions and garlic until lightly golden. Add the carrots and tomatoes. Add just enough water to rehydrate the tomatoes and sauté for a few more minutes. Add chard and combine with other vegetables. Cover for a few minutes while the chard wilts down.
Uncover, stir well, then use the back of a spoon to make depressions in the cooked leaves, circling the pan like numbers on a clock. Break an egg into each depression, being careful to keep yolks whole. Cover pan again and allow eggs to poach for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and serve over rice.
Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Balsamic
1 pound Brussels sprouts
1/4 pound bacon, chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped onion or shallot
1-2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
Trim ends off sprouts and halve large ones. Blanch in boiling water or steam over boiling water until just tender. Plunge into ice water to stop the cooking and preserve the bright green color, drain well. Cook bacon until crisp and drain on paper towels. Remove all but 2 tablespoons of bacon grease from the pan. Add onions, cook until light brown. Add Brussels sprouts, butter, vinegar, salt, pepper and bacon. Toss until hot.
Zucchini Bread and Butter Pickles
3 T. salt
1 c. cider vinegar
1 c. sugar (2 1/2 lbs.)
1 tsp. mustard seeds
1/2 tsp. tumeric
5 ea cloves
1/4 tsp. celery seed
1 lbs. zucchini- thin 1/8
1 med. Onion- thin sliced
Toss salt with zucchini and onions in a colander, let stand 1 hours and then rinse with water. Combine sugar, vinegar and spices in a large pan- bring to a boil. Add sliced vegetables and remove from heat immediately. Put into sterilized jars and enjoy in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.
Wilted Escarole Side Dish
2-3 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 c. chopped bacon
1/2 c chopped onion
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 bell pepper, diced
1/4 c balsamic vinegar
2 Tbls brown sugar
1 head escarole, outer leaves and core removed, chopped into 2 pieces
In large saute pan or cast iron pot, saute bacon in olive oil until crisp, add onion, garlic and bell pepper and cook until tender. Add brown sugar and balsamic vinegar and cook 1 min, add escarole, stir and cook, covered, about 5-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, serve with fresh lemon.
Note: you can also throw in a can of cannolini beans and chicken into this (right when you add the greens) and make a meal of it- Yum!
Tuscan Farro And Bean Soup
1 cup fresh borlotti or cranberry beans
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for drizzling
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, coarsely chopped
1 celery rib, coarsely chopped
2 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
8 cups water
1 large tomato (1/2 lb), coarsely chopped 1
/4 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
10 fresh sage leaves
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 cup whole-grain farro, or spelt
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Shell beans and pick over. Heat oil in a 5- to 6-quart heavy pot over moderate heat until hot but not smoking, then cook onion, carrots, celery, and garlic, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened, about 10 minutes. Stir in water, beans, tomato, parsley, sage, and thyme and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cook at a bare simmer, partially covered, stirring oc- casionally until beans are tender, about 1/2 hour.
Discard thyme sprigs, then blend mixture in batches in a blender until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids), transferring to a large bowl. Return soup to pot and bring to a boil. Add farro and salt, then re- duce heat and simmer, stirring frequently, until farro is tender (it will be chewy like barley), about 30 minutes. Stir in pepper and serve drizzled with additional oil.
Beets and Apples
2 medium/large beets, roasted, peeled and diced.
1 medium/large apple, diced
1 medium/large onion, diced.
Saute the onion and apple in butter or oil until the onion is tender. Add beets and cook until beets are heated through. Serve with sour cream.
Pico de Gallo
2 Large ripe tomatoes, finely diced
1 Garlic clove, finely chopped
2 Red hot cherry peppers, finely diced
1/4 cup finely diced white onion
2 Tbs. chopped cilantro
Juice of 1 lime or 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
Combine the tomatoes with their juices, garlic, chiles, onion, cilantro, and 1/4 tsp. salt in a bowl. Add the lime juice and taste for salt. Let stand 20 minutes or so before serving. If you want to make it ahead of time wait until right before serving to add the cilantro.
I always turn to Diana Kennedy when I’m looking for salsa/mexican recipes. Here’s one I love.
Salsa de Jitomate (Cocida) Cooked Tomato Sauce
3 Medium tomatoes, broiled
3 chiles serranos, toasted
1/4 onion, roughly chopped
1 small clove garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
2 T. peanut or safflower oil
1/4 t. salt, or to taste
Wash the tomatoes and place them in a shallow, foil-lined pan under the broiler set to a low temperature. You want the tomatoes to blister and turn brown but also to cook all the way through. Turn them occasionally to expose all sides to the heat until completely soft. This should take about 20 minutes. To toast the chiles place them in a dry cast iron skillet over medium heat and turn them until the outside is blistered and the inside is soft.
Place the tomatoes, chiles, onion and garlic in a blender until fairly smooth. Heat the oil in your chile toasting skillet and add the sauce and salt and cook over a medium flame until the sauce has thickened and is well seasoned.
Pisto Manchego is a classic vegetable dish from La Mancha in the central plains of Spain. It can be eaten on pasta, rice or bread and served hot or cold.
3 tablespoons fruity olive oil
1 green pepper, cut into 3/4 inch squares
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch slices, then cubed
5 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 pound tomatoes, skinned and diced
1 tablespoon minced parsley
Freshly-ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a large saucepan and sauté the pepper, onion, zucchini and garlic until the onion is wilted. Add the tomato, parsley, salt and black pepper and cook over medium heat, uncovered, for 30 minutes. At the end of the cooking time, turn up the heat to reduce the liquid—the stew should be thick, not soupy.
Carrot Ginger Lemon Soup
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 1/4 pounds medium carrots, peeled, chopped (about 3 c.)
2 tomatoes, seeded, chopped (about 1 1/3 cups)
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
3 cups (or more) chicken stock or canned low-salt broth
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons sour cream
1 small carrot, peeled, grated
Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté 4 minutes. Add ginger and garlic; sauté 2 minutes. Add chopped carrots, tomatoes and lemon peel; saut 1 minute. Add 3 cups stock and bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover partially and simmer until carrots are very tender, about 20 minutes. Cool slightly.
Puree soup in batches in blender. Return soup to pot. Mix in lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.)
Bring soup to simmer, thinning with more stock, if desired. Ladle into bowls. Top each with sour cream and grated carrot. If you like spicy you could add some cayenne to this to offset the sweet carrots.
Cabbage, Fennel and Carrot Slaw
Make the slaw and chill it up to two hours before serving. It is best cold.
1 small cabbage, quartered, cored, very thinly sliced (about 18 cups)
2 or 3 fresh fennel bulbs, trimmed, halved, very thinly sliced (about 3 cups)
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 medium carrots, peeled, coarsely shredded
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
Combine cabbage, fennel, onion, and carrot in large bowl. Whisk mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, sugar, and hot sauce in medium bowl to blend. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper. Add dressing to cabbage mixture; toss to coat. Season slaw to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 2 hours, tossing occasionally. Transfer to serving bowl.
Bright Green Spinach and Pea Soup
2 T. butter or olive oil
2 bunches scallions, coarsely chopped
1 small onion, thinly sliced
3 carrots, thinly sliced
1 celery rib, thinly sliced
1 t. dried marjoram
2 T. chopped parsley
1 bag of spinach (or about 1 lb.)
1 cup sugar snaps, trimmed
lemon juice to taste
Warm the butter or oil in a soup pot and add the scallions, onion, carrots, celery, herbs, 1 teaspoon salt and ½ c. water. Cover and stew for 5 minutes, then add 5½ cups water or stock and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered for 20 minutes. Add the peas and cook for 2-3 minutes and then poke the spinach leaves into the soup and cook until they turn bright green, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and blend the soup in two batches until perfectly smooth. Taste for salt, season with pepper, and stir in enough lemon juice starting with ½ teaspoon to bring up the flavors. Serve immediately with a swirl of good yogurt and croutons on top.
This recipe is from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone which I’d wholeheartedly recommend.
Costa Rican Black Bean Soup
For the beans:
2 c. dried black beans, washed and drained
4 cloves garlic
6 T. chopped cilantro
2 t. salt
For the soup
1/4 c. olive oil
1 clove garlic or 2 finely chopped garlic scapes
1 large onion, chopped
1 hot pepper (jalapeno, chipotle), chopped, optional
2 celery stalks, diced
2 well-packed cups chopped cilantro
1 t. salt
Black pepper and cayenne to taste
Soak the beans overnight in water to cover by 4 inches. Drain them the following day and combine in a large pot with 8 c. of fresh water, the garlic and cilantro. Bring to a boil and cook, covered for 1 _ hours, or until tender, add the salt and cook another 15 minutes until very tender. Strain and reserve all the liquid in the large pot with the beans in a separate bowl.
To finish the soup, put the oil in a large frying pan and set over medium-high heat. When hot, put in the garlic, onions, jalapeno and celery and sauté for 5 minutes. Turen the heat down slightly and sauté another 2 to 3 minutes. Add the cilantro and sauté another minute, then turn off the heat. Combine the contents of the frying pan plus 1 cup of the cooked beans and about 3 large ladles of the strained bean liquid in a blender. Blend until you have a smooth puree. Empty this puree into the pot with the remaining strained bean liquid. Add the salt, pepper and cayenne to taste. Stir to mix and taste. You can add some heavy cream at the end or simply garnish with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkling of cilantro. Add back in the rest of the cooked beans for a heavier soup, or save them to make tacos later. A little ham or a smoked pork hock also is a nice addition.
Caulifower Potato Soup
1/2 pound boiling potatoes
1/2 cup chopped lacinato kale
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds
2 cups 1-inch cauliflower flowerets
2 T. high quality extra-virgin olive oil
freshly grated Parmesan to taste
In a saucepan combine the potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces, the kale, the onion, the caraway seeds, 1 cup of the flowerets and 3 1/2 cups water, simmer the mixture for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are very tender, and in a blender or food processor purée the mixture coarse. In the pan combine the purée and the other cup of flowerets, simmer the soup for 5 minutes, or until the flowerets are tender, salt and pepper to taste. Serve the soup sprinkled with the Parmesan and drizzled with olive oil. This is a very basic soup that can easily be scaled up. For more flavor use a stock instead of water, or toss a couple of good bullion cubes in when you add the water. The kale will give it a pale green color, you can omit that if it’s going to scare off your family, but it’s a good way to get some kale by them.
1 medium white onion, quartered
3 lb ripe medium tomatoes, cored
1/2 cup olive oil1 fresh hot pepper, chopped, including seeds
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
Preheat oven to 400°F. Arrange 2 onion quarters and 2 pounds tomatoes in a small roasting pan and drizzle with 1/4 cup oil. Arrange remaining 1 pound tomatoes in a small baking pan and drizzle with remaining 1/4 cup oil.Bake both pans of tomatoes in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of pans after 45 minutes, until browned, about 1 1/2 hours. Remove roasting pan and continue baking small pan of tomatoes until blackened, about 30 minutes more.Transfer all roasted tomatoes (do not peel) and onions with a slotted spoon to a food processor, discarding liquid in pans. If your processor is small, do this in 2 batches. Pulse until coarsely chopped. (Alternatively, you can chop with an immersion blender in a deep container.)Chop remaining 2 onion quarters and stir together with tomato mixture, serrano, cilantro, and vinegar. Season with salt and chill, covered, at least 8 hours to blend flavors. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Here’s a simple fresh Mexican salsa from Diana Kennedy. If you like Mexican food all of her books are excellent. She also keeps her recipes small and they’re very easy to double or triple.
Salsa Mexicana Cruda
1 medium tomato
4 T. finely chopped white onion
2 T. cilantro, roughly chopped
Finely chopped hot pepper to taste
½ t. salt
1/3 c. cold water
Chop the unskinned tomato and mix with the rest of the ingredients. This one is meant to be made right before you need it.
Here is the aforementioned recipe sent in by a member from 1,000 Lowfat Recipes by Terry Golson. It called for canned tomatoes so I changed some things around and hopefully didn’t wreck it.
Spaghetti with Eggplant and Fresh Tomato Sauce
1 pound eggplant, peeled and cut into 1″ dice
1½ T. olive oil, divided
1 t. kosher salt
1 c. chopped onions
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 large or four medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1/8 t crushed red pepper flakes
¼ t freshly ground pepper
1 pound spaghetti
grated parmesan or Romano for garnish
Preheat oven to 400°. Toss eggplant with 1T of the oil and all of the salt. Place in a rimmed baking sheet, one layer deep. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn with metal spatula and bake for 5 min more or until tender and browned in places.To prepare the tomatoes cut out the cores and slice an X into the bottom. Place them in boiling water for about 30 seconds, or until the skin starts to peel off. Remove them to cold water and slip the skins off with your fingers. Roughly chop them and set aside.Heat remaining oil in large skillet. Sauté the onions over med-low heat until translucent, about 5 minutes. Start your pasta water while the onions are sautéing. Add the garlic and sauté another minute or two. Add the tomatoes and bring up heat to a simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the pepper flakes and ground pepper, stir in baked eggplant, and simmer covered for about 12 minutes or until pasta is done. Top pasta with sauce and garnish with grated cheese.
Summer Corn Chowder
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
5 cups vegetable or chicken broth
2 yellow potatoes, cut into 1/4-inch dice
4 cups fresh corn kernels
1/2 cup diced (1/4 inch) red bell pepper
1/2 cup diced (1/4 inch) green bell pepper
Salt, to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup half-and-half
1 ripe tomatoe, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice, for garnish
1/2 cup thinly slivered fresh basil leaves, for garnish
Place the oil and butter in a pot over low heat. Add the diced onion and wilt for about 10 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the onion; cook, stirring, for an additional 3 to 5 minutes. Add the broth and potatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, partially covered, for 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally.Add the corn, red and green bell peppers, salt, pepper, and half-and-half; cook over low heat for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Ladle 2 cups of soup into each bowl. Before serving, place 1 tablespoon of diced tomatoes in the center of each and top generously with slivered basil. Serve immediately.
1 bunch collards or kale, coarse stems removed
1 onion, diced
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
½ t. red pepper flakes
¼ c. butter
Plunge the greens into a large pot of boiling salted water, cook them for 10 minutes, then remove to a bowl. Reserve ½ cup of the cooking water. Melt the butter in a wide skillet over medium heat until it starts to turn golden brown and smell a bit nutty. Add the onion, garlic and pepper flakes and stir occasionally until the garlic is light brown and the onion soft. Add the greens, reserved cooking water and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook for 30 minutes and taste again for salt, they can take a lot. Serve with a dash of Tabasco.