thyme

 

Wow it’s been a while since I wrote regularly for weirdcombinations.  This is my first week “back.”  I miss it and I miss visiting my blogger friends’ blogs.  The reason for the hiatus is that it got super busy at work, plus I had to travel down to Brazil, also for work, in late August through mid-September.  The schedule was crazy while I was there but I made room to see some of my family, which was fantastic.  I hadn’t been back home for about 3 years.  Now it’s been three weeks since my return to San Francisco and things are just starting to slow down.  Whew!!

yellow crook squash and Italian zucchini tart with feta and olives

yellow crook squash and Italian zucchini tart with feta and olives

Part of the problem is that on the very same day I arrived back, I cut one of my fingers very badly on a piece of broken glass from a jar of guava jam while opening my suitcase.  Ugh!  It was a huge mess—glass, guava and blood.  Things might have been better had I not felt completely jetlagged on top of it all.  On the positive side, I’m healing up fine and fortunately, I “smuggled” in several more jars of guava.  It’s a good thing that I’m greedy!

I made this wonderful tart a few days before I left for Brazil.  I used our home-grown yellow crook squash and Italian zucchini.  Then it was the height of squash season and we had a superabundance of these precious things.   The season for zuchs is almost over now but I’m sure that they’re still available somewhere.  This is a beautiful and elegant, thin and delicate tart, despite the bold flavors that Kalamata olives and feta cheese impart.

yellow crook squash and Italian zucchini tart with feta and olives

3 to 4 yellow and green squashes, sliced thinly in the mandolin (keep colors separated in two small bowls)
1 cup good French feta cheese, crumbled
½ cup pitted and halved Kalamata olives
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ tsp fresh thyme
½ tsp fresh oregano
8 to 10 sheets of filo dough at room temperature
Kosher salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
Sprinkles of crushed red pepper
1 cookie tray 12”x17”, lined with foil
Cooking brush

Pre-heat oven to 375F.

Toss individual bowls of squash with salt, black and red pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Set aside.

Brush bottom of tray with olive oil. Lay the first filo sheet over tray then brush with more olive oil.  Lay the second over, brush with more olive oil. Repeat process until all sheets are used. Lay on row of zucchini and then yellow squash on top of filo, to create an attractive pattern, sprinkle with fresh oregano and thyme. Brush the edges of the tart with more olive oil. Place tart in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until squash is cooked but not mushy and the edges lightly browned.  Remove from oven then scatter the olives and feta cheese.  And since I’m a hog for olive oil…. add a drizzle of olive on top too.

It’s great to be back but I already miss everybody in Brazil.  Where is that Star Trek style transporter device when you need it?  Beam me up, Scotty!  Please 🙂

me with two of my sisters relaxing on the beach in the Brazilian winter

me with two of my sisters relaxing on the beach in the Brazilian winter: nice!!!

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This recipe comes from Paul Prudhomme’s incredible cookbook, Louisiana Cooking. When I lived in Dallas in the nineties, I frequently used this book. I was especially partial to his panéed chicken and fettucini, spice-coated deep fried chicken thighs over a rich and spicy cream sauce with pasta. The dish blew my socks off.

Louisiana style shrimp and crab stuffed eggplant

Louisiana style shrimp and crab stuffed eggplant

Everything in the book has butter, fat, lots of oil and usually something gets fried. Plus there’re tons of thrilling Cajun spices thrown in the mix. This is food for the young. You need to be in good health with a fast metabolism to survive it unscathed, at least if you’re dining this way on a regular basis. Otherwise, these succulent recipes fall into my once-in-a-blue-moon culinary category.

we felt like this after the Louisiana eggplant dish, all tired and sluggish, though it was amazing

we felt like this after the Louisiana eggplant dish, all tired and sluggish, though it was amazing

Actually, I haven’t cooked from this book in about ten years. When I‘d first met Hegui, I wanted to show off a bit by making an eggplant recipe found in these magical pages. It was sort of like today’s dish: deep fried eggplant stuffed with shrimp. We were in New York then, and it was late July during a heat wave. Only one room of my apartment had air conditioning. So I turned it on full blast, moved the dining table and chairs into the bedroom, and slaved away for a while in the really hot kitchen. I plated everything and it looked perfect! The only problem was the level of spice. Then Hegui didn’t appreciate spicy food at all. I loved (and still love) it. But I think that I made some sort of mistake somewhere along the line. This dish, like the weather, was impossible: way, way too hot. Neither of us could tolerate it. What a disaster!

to recover, what we should have done is this, gone dancing

to recover, what we should have done is this, gone dancing

So I’ve been thinking of that dinner from long ago, wondering about trying again. There are several recipes for stuffed eggplant in Louisiana Cooking. This one with crab and shrimp, called Eggplant Bayou Teche, I don’t think is the same as that one I made before. But like all Prudhomme recipes, it requires lots of oil, shellfish, butter, spices, and the eggplant, of course, gets deep fried. So this is really good and really filling.

I mis-read the directions so failed to peel the eggplant. I don’t think that was such a problem. I used only one pound of shrimp, instead of the recommended 1½ lbs. Also, I had two large eggplants. I think that turned into a lot of food in a single serving, since you really need to give each diner an entire “eggplant canoe” at the table for it to look right. Next time, I’m going to use smaller eggplant and more of them. You’re supposed to add one teaspoon of garlic powder to the spice mix, but I didn’t have any so left it out. I needed more breadcrumbs than recommended, ran out of the spice mix and made my own seafood stock with the shells from the shrimp, the juice from the container of lump crab meat, half an onion and two celery stalks.

We had ours with black beans and rice. There were lots of leftovers.

preparing the eggplant canoe

preparing the eggplant canoe

Louisiana style shrimp and crab stuffed eggplant

3 medium eggplant
½ onion, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
½ green bell pepper, finely chopped
¼ cup vegetable oil plus more to fry eggplant
1 cup flour
1½ cups seafood stock
1 cup fine breadcrumbs
¾ cup soy milk
1 large egg
6 tbsp unsalted butter
½ pound lump crab meat
1 pound shrimp
½ cup finely chopped green onions
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 tbsp Pastis or similar anise flavored alcohol

For the spice mix:

4½ tsp salt
1 tbsp sweet paprika
2 tsp white pepper
1½ tsp onion powder
1 tsp cayenne
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp dried thyme
½ tsp dried basil

Remove woody parts of eggplant, (peel if you wish), cut in halves the long way. Carefully remove the interior of the eggplant so that there is about a quarter inch shell. I used a paring knife and scooped it out with a spoon. Use removed eggplant for another dish. Wrap eggplant shells tightly and refrigerate.
Mix all spice ingredients together and set aside.

In another bowl, mix chopped onion, celery and green pepper together. Set aside.

To make the sauce:

Start by making a roux. In a medium saucepan, add ¼ cup oil on high heat. Cook until it begins to smoke. Then slowly mix in ¼ cup flour. Stir with a wire whisk for several minutes until the roux becomes medium brown in color. Remove from heat, and stir in the chopped veggies and 1½ tsp of the spice mix. Set aside.

In another saucepan, bring seafood stock to boil. Gradually stir in the roux. Cook on high heat for about five minutes, then simmer for another five minutes. Remove from heat and strain the sauce into a bowl. Set aside. Discard the veggies.

To prepare the eggplant boats:

Beat the egg in a large bowl. Add milk and 1 tbsp spice mix. In another bowl, add remaining flour and 1 tbsp spice mix. In a third add breadcrumbs and 1 tbsp spice mix. Heat enough oil in a deep skillet to submerge the eggplant at least half way. Unwrap each eggplant. Rub each with about ½ to ¾ tsp spice mix. Dredge in flour mixture, then milk mixture and finally the breadcrumb mixture. Fry until golden brown. Let drain on paper towels. Repeat with all eggplant halves.

To prepare seafood fillings:

Melt 2 tbsp butter in a medium pan. Add crab meat, half of the green onion, the garlic and ¼ tsp spice mix. Cook for a couple minutes then set aside.

Melt remaining butter in a medium pan. Add shrimp, remaining green onion, 1½ tsp spice mix and cook for a minute. Add reserved sauce and Pastis. Cook until shrimp turn pink.

To serve:

Place eggplant boats on a large heated tray or dish, or you can make individual plates. Fill them first with the crab meat, then with the shrimp and sauce. Enjoy!

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This recipe comes from “Plenty” by our new favorite cookbook author, Yotam Ottolenghi. He writes that a good friend first cooked this delightful dish for him as a variation of pissaladière using “socca” dough for the base, a chickpea flour based creation. Like all the pics in the book, the one for this was so mouth watering that I couldn’t resist trying it.

socca fresh from oven with tomatoes and onions

socca fresh from oven with tomatoes and onions

To me, the socca was a lot like pancake batter. So it was really easy to use. The little cakes firm up a lot more than buttermilk flapjacks though. I was able to make six large cakes but didn’t have enough tomatoes for the topping. The recipe calls for 2 cups of halved cherry tomatoes. I think three or four cups are really needed; or perhaps reducing the batter ingredients in half would work, too.

Ottolenghi's socca with tomatoes, onions and sweet pepper garnish

Ottolenghi's socca with tomatoes, onions and sweet pepper garnish

Ottolenghi’s socca with tomatoes and onions

3 to 4 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
5½+ tbsps. Olive oil
3 medium white onions, cut into thin rings
2 tbsps. Fresh thyme
Salt and black pepper
½ tsp white wine vinegar
1¾ cups chickpea flour
2 cups water
2 egg whites
sautéed sweet peppers for garnish

Preheat oven to 275F.

Spread tomatoes, cut side up, on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Drizzle with some olive oil. Roast in oven about 30 minutes to slightly cook. Remove from heat and set aside.

Add 4 tablespoons olive oil, onion rings, thyme, some salt and pepper in a large pan. Sauté on medium high for about 20 minutes until onions become translucent and somewhat golden in color. This took longer for me than Yotam indicated. When finished, add vinegar, adjust seasonings and reserve.

Place chickpea flour, water, 1½ tablespoons olive oil, ¾ teaspoon salt and some black pepper in a bowl. Whisk together. In another bowl, beat egg whites to soft peaks. Fold flour mixture into eggs.

Raise oven temp to 325F.

Line some baking trays with wax paper. Brush with olive oil. In a small frying pan, add a bit more olive oil and some batter. Cook about three minutes on a side at medium heat. Once both sides are done, place on prepared baking sheet. When all cakes are done, bake for five minutes.

To serve, divide onions evenly between cakes then top with roasted tomatoes. Drizzle with more olive oil. Add some sweet peppers as garnish.

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Heavenly Housewife has been singing the praises of Yotam Ottolenghi lately. She’s even taken an Ottolenghi cooking class in London after waiting forever to get in. Yes, that’s how popular this chef has become in the UK. She posted some delicious treats from the class and then, good heavens, she made some of his salads! That’s a sure sign that she truly adores this chef. I wish we were in London taking Yotam’s classes together. Wouldn’t that be fun? London, Heavenly, Steven, Yotam and me: who could ask for anything more?

Yotam Ottolenghi-style roasted eggplant with labneh, za’atar and pomegranate molasses

Yotam Ottolenghi-style roasted eggplant with labneh, za’atar and pomegranate molasses

Last week while browsing in some colorful Mission Neighborhood shops before it was time for our table at Locanda, I spotted a gorgeous cookbook graced by this eggplant dish. It looked like an objet d’art, a jewel! As you might already guess, the book was Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi. The American version is published by Chronicle Books LLC, right here in San Francisco, very cool! It is packed with a whole lot of exciting vegetarian dishes. I like it so well, that I’ve already prepared four of them, so more to come. The photography in the book is mind-blowing. Our compliments to the photographer, Jonathan Lovekin, and to Yotam Ottolenghi, of course.

I had to adapt the recipe because I didn’t have all the ingredients. Pomegranates are not in season right now, so I used small drops of pomegranate molasses instead. The sauce calls for buttermilk and Greek yogurt, but I used labneh, since we had some already. I prepared my own za’atar, as we have all the individual ingredients in our pantry. The lemon thyme, I’m thrilled to say, comes from my own community garden plot. This is the first recipe that calls for it that I’ve made since planting that lovely herb.

Lastly, the recipe calls for roasting the eggplant at 200F for 35-40 minutes. I think that must be an error. Surely it was supposed to be 200C. The publisher must have forgotten to convert to Fahrenheit. It should have been at least 400F. I waited about 35 minutes before cranking up the heat and only then did my eggplant really start to brown and cook.

Otherwise, this dish was sublime. Thanks, Heavenly Housewife, for introducing Yotam Ottolenghi’s cooking to our table!

Yotam Ottolenghi-style roasted eggplant with labneh, za’atar and pomegranate molasses

For the eggplant:

3 medium to large Italian eggplant, cut in half the long way, stems on
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp fresh lemon thyme, minced; plus several sprigs lemon thyme
½ tsp pomegranate molasses
Black pepper to taste
Pinch Aleppo pepper
Kosher salt
2 tsp za’atar*

For labneh sauce:

2 cloves garlic, peeled and mashed
3 tbsp extra virgin arbequina olive oil
Kosher salt to taste
1 cup labneh
½ cup water or more

*For the za’atar :

3 tbsp sumac
1 tsp dried Greek oregano
1 tbsp pan dry-roasted sesame seeds, cooled to room temperature and ground
Pinch savory
½ tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp kosher salt

Pre heat oven to 400F.

Place eggplant halves, cut side up, on a baking dish. Use a sharp knife to make incisions in eggplant flesh in the shape of diamonds/ lozenges without piecing the skin. Brush halves with equal amounts of olive oil. Repeat until all olive oil is absorbed. Add salt, peppers and minced thyme. Tuck some of the seasonings in the little crevices of the eggplant. Bake uncovered for 45 minutes, or until flesh is soft. Broil eggplant for few minutes towards the end, just to give them some color. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature.

Meanwhile prepare za’atar by mixing all ingredients together, set aside.

Place labneh in a bowl. Whisk in ½ cup of water, olive oil, salt and mashed garlic. The sauce should be fairly thin. Add more water here if needed. Set aside.

Arrange eggplant halves on a serving platter. Spoon over some labneh sauce, top with a few drops of pomegranate molasses, sprinkle za’atar over that, followed by a few flowers of lemon thyme

Store leftover za’atar in a tight container in the refrigerator for up to a month. Sprinkle it liberally on salads, rice, humus, yogurt.

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I made this tasty and healthy dish from germinated red lentils. Hegui sprouted them from dried a few days before. Inspired by all the fresh herbs in our community garden plot, I used a mix of chive, mint, Italian parsley, sage and lemon thyme. Any combination might do. The kale stems are sort of optional. They add a nice green color. And of course we have a huge abundance of them with the success of the kale right now. What do you do with your leftover kale stems?

germinated red lentil sprouts with fresh garden herbs

germinated red lentil sprouts with fresh garden herbs

This sauté reminds me of a warm salad. Fragrant from the herbs and nutty, the lentils are a bit crunchy, too.

germinated red lentil sprouts with fresh garden herbs

2 cups germinated red lentil sprouts
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 cup kale stems with some leaves, finely sliced
3 tbsp olive oil
½ cup dry white wine
Salt and black pepper to taste
1 to 2 tbsp fresh herbs: chive, mint, Italian parsley, sage, thyme

Heat olive oil in medium skillet. Add onion. Sauté on medium until onion becomes translucent. Add kale stems and garlic. Sauté a bit more then add white wine, cover pan and allow to steam. Add sprouted red lentil and fold vegetables together. Add salt and black pepper to taste. Cover and cook until lentils heat through. Mix in fresh herbs. Serve.

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I absolutely adore polenta. It has such a perfect texture and flavor. But today mushrooms are the main focus of this dish. I’ve been on a mushroom rampage ever since Steven complained that we hadn’t been enjoying them very often. Well, by now, obviously, I disagree. Look here for some other exciting dishes that feature the classic edible fungus: Ramen noodle soup with shiitake and tremella mushrooms, baked portobellos stuffed with shiitake tomato filling, linguine with chick pea, mushroom and spinach, and mushroom and pink bean loaf. It is fun working with mushrooms and discovering how versatile they are.

sautéed Porcini and Shiitake mushrooms with Fontina over polenta

sautéed Porcini and Shiitake mushrooms with Fontina over polenta

This recipe is somewhat like ajwain seed flavored angú with leeks, fava beans and cheddar in that it has things layered over soft polenta. Here, I concentrated the mushroom flavors by pan-roasting them prior to adding oil or salt. This way the mushrooms won’t turn out soggy and have an intense, mushroom-y flavor. Try it and you’ll never go back to any other method.

sautéed Porcini and Shiitake mushrooms with Fontina over polenta

1lb instant Italian polenta (I like la polenta Beretta brand)
2 quarts (~2 liters) homemade vegetable broth; from carrots, celery and onions
6 tbsp olive oil
kosher salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
1 cup grated Fontina cheese
1 lb fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed then quartered
1 lb fresh porcini mushrooms, cut in halves
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp sherry vinegar
½ tsp dried or fresh thyme

To prepare vegetable stock:

Fill a large pot with water and add carrot, onion and celery. Bring to a boil then reduce temperature to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Discard vegetables.

Pre-heat oven to 357F.

To make polenta:

Bring 2 quarts vegetable stock to a boil. Remove from heat. Add salt, black pepper, 3 tbsp olive oil and polenta. Whisk vigorously to prevent lumps from forming. Place over medium heat constantly stirring for about 10 minutes. Reduce temperature to low to keep warm.

To prepare mushrooms:

Meanwhile heat up a nonstick skillet, add mushrooms (if pan is too small cook mushroom in batches) and pan roast them for about 10 minutes. Move mushrooms to side of the pan, add 2 tbsp olive oil and garlic to center and cook for about a minute. Fold mushrooms into garlic oil. Move mushrooms to the side of the pan again and add sherry vinegar. It will evaporate fast. Let it bubble a bit before mixing the mushroom in again. Add salt, thyme and 1 tbsp olive oil. Remove from heat.

Transfer polenta to a glass baking dish, top with Fontina followed by sautéed mushrooms. Bake long enough for cheese to melt. Serve with a hearty red wine.

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This recipe was adapted from The Best – Ever Vegetarian Cookbook by Nicola Graimes. I bought it recently while perusing a used bookshop in downtown Reno a couple of weeks ago. We went there to visit our friends Karen and Veronica.

bolo de feijão rosinha com cogumelos, or vegetarian mushroom and pink bean loaf

bolo de feijão rosinha com cogumelos, or vegetarian mushroom and pink bean loaf

It was fun spending the weekend at their gi-normous house, their two lovely and charming kids, Cooper and Madison, plus all their pets. Wow! They’ve got four dogs, two bunnies, two cats and a lizard. Amazingly, everyone got along just fine, that is until we brought our English bulldog, Clarence, to the party. I guess he needs to get out more and socialize. He freaked out for the first evening we were there but thank goodness he finally settled down! We were afraid that our weekend was going to turn into a disaster. Maybe with Clarence entering middle age now, he’s becoming a little less rambunctious.

This loaf cake is a very granola-style dish, though it tastes great even so. All of your vegetarian and even “full-feeding” friends will enjoy it. It calls for a lot of ingredients and it is a bit laborious but well worth it.

The original recipe used red kidney beans, but I only had pink ones, feijão rosinha in Portuguese, which I cooked myself from a package of dried beans. I think they have a sweeter taste and look cuter than red kidney. You can use canned beans to save time. I prefer the taste of home cooked beans over the canned type, plus they’re cheaper and they freeze well.

My version of this dish departs in numerous other ways from the original in the Graimes cookbook, though she remains my inspiration. In a way, it reminds me of Taste of Beirut style eggplant bulgur casserole, as some of the ingredients are very similar.

bolo de feijão rosinha com cogumelos, or vegetarian mushroom and pink bean loaf

1 lb crimini mushrooms, sliced
1 white onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
2 tbsp dry white wine
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
2 cup cooked pink beans
1 egg white, lightly beaten
½ cup cream of wheat
1 cup cracked wheat (bulgur), pre-soaked for 2 hours and drained
1 tbsp fresh thyme, minced
1 tbsp fresh rosemary, minced
Kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
extra virgin olive oil
red pepper flakes

Pre-heat oven to 350F. Grease a loaf pan with olive oil then line with parchment paper and set aside.

Place 2 tbsp of olive oil, onion and garlic in a pan on medium heat. Sauté for a couple of minutes to bring to a sweat. Add mushrooms, bell pepper, white wine, sherry vinegar and continue sautéing for few minutes until mushrooms and peppers have softened slightly. Turn heat off and let cool a bit.

Transfer sautéed vegetables to food processor. Add beans and process until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and using a spatula add cream of wheat, bulgur, nutritional yeast, black pepper, salt, thyme, rosemary, pepper flakes and about one tbsp of olive oil. Taste it and adjust flavors if necessary. Fold in egg white.

Press dough into leaf pan. Bake for about an hour. Check for doneness during the last 10 minutes of cooking. Remove from oven let it rest for 5 minutes. Invert loaf on a platter and remove parchment paper. Turn it over again. Drizzle olive oil over loaf and garnish with fresh herbs. Serve warm or at room temperature.

The nutrional yeast gives this loaf a bit of a parmesan cheese-like taste, and, with the mushrooms, makes the dish rich in B vitamins.

Cooper on the move

Cooper on the move


Maddie says hi

Maddie says hi

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We had a bunch of fresh summer squash and fava pods sitting in the fridge the other day. The fava had been there for a while. You know how labor intensive preparing some veggies can be. Think for instance of artichokes. Fava is equally time-intensive though you’re less likely than with artichokes to poke or cut yourself preparing these.

zucchini and yellow squash stuffed with fava beans

As a result, at home, no matter how fresh these veggies start out, by the time we get to them, they’ve already gone through a “dehydrating process” in the fridge: never old, but certainly not at their newly harvested best. Come to think of it, I believe that this happens more often at the end of the fava season when more less-difficult-to-prepare-options are available. In early spring we’re thrilled to see them and get away from endless beet and winter squash dishes. Perhaps it’s just the novelty of the newer summer produce rather than pure laziness? Aah, Mother Nature!

preparing fresh favas is time consuming but well worth it

Well it was an unusually cold Sunday afternoon when I made this recipe. Winter-like weather in late spring is a San Francisco specialty. But I’m always one for turning lemons into lemonade. As the oven warmed the kitchen, the amazing aromas made everything cozier. The end result was fabulous, too.

zucchini and yellow squash stuffed with fresh fava beans

5 zucchini
5 yellow squash
35 pods fresh fava bean (1 cup shelled)
2 slices white bread, crusts removed
¼ cup soy milk
4 tbsp breadcrumbs
4 leaves fresh basil, julienned
1tsp chopped fresh thyme
2 garlic cloves, chopped
4 tbsp parmesan cheese
4 tbsp grated cheddar cheese
Sprinkles of crushed red pepper
Sprinkles of fresh black pepper
Olive oil

Bring a big pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add squash and cook for about 4-5 minutes. Remove and let them cool down. Cut squashes in halves lengthwise. Carve halves into canoe shapes by removing inner parts of each half squash. Chop removed parts of squash fine and reserve.

squash are stuffed and ready for the oven

Remove fava beans from pods. To remove membrane around beans, cook them for 3-4 in the same boiling water used for squash. Transfer fava to a bowl to cool. Remove membrane that covers the beans.

Pre-heat the oven to 380F.

Soak bread slices in soy milk for 5 minutes. Squeeze to remove excess milk. Place bread in a bowl with reserved chopped squash, parmesan cheese, thyme, garlic, basil, bread crumbs, peppers, salt and olive oil. Mix with a spatula. Adjust flavors. Stuff each squash half with the mix. Sprinkle with cheddar, more black and crushed red peppers and a drizzle of olive oil. Bake for about 40 minutes or until tops are golden brown.

fava stuffed zucchini and yellow squash with a variation of crunchy avocado salad

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Mediterranean lemon tofu with artichokes, olives and herbs

June 3, 2010

I never know what to do with the extra firm high-protein tofu. It feels like a rubber brick and doesn’t really taste that much better either. We had two blocks of the stuff sitting around for a while and I wanted to make something before they reached their expiration dates. I used to make something […]

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roasted purple asparagus with semi-dried Roma tomatoes

May 26, 2010

I saw this purple asparagus at TJ’s the other day and I couldn’t resist. It’s so beautiful and fresh, and, well, so purple! I just baked them in the oven with some balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper and tossed a few quartered semi-dried Roma tomatoes I had made earlier. The flavors were amazing! […]

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