Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Recipe of the Moment: Middle Eastern-America Pizza

One night last week I was making falafel. I was going to make a falafel sandwich, but I didn't have pits bread. Actually, we didn't have any bread in the house, and I didn't want to make any, mostly because I didn't want to wait for the yeast to rise. So I found a quick online recipe for roti bread, and suddenly I knew what I was going to make: Middle Eastern pizza.

Now, very little of this is actually Middle Eastern. Perhaps I should say Middle Eastern-American pizza?

Regardless, it's very tasty and my boyfriend and I happily ate it for the next several nights.

You'll have to forgive me for the imprecise measurements. I had no idea if what I was doing would turn out all right. Just taste as you go, and everything should turn out great. 

*roti flatbread (flour, water)
**sauce (yogurt, basil, thyme, paprika, cayenne pepper, honey)

My secret amazing sauce!
*To make roti bread: combine about 1/2 cup flour with 1/4 cup of water. It's best to use whole wheat or spelt flour if you have it. If not, all purpose works. Add a pinch of salt. Stir and let sit for about 30 minutes. If it's too watery, add more flour. Too thick, add more water. Roll the bread out, and pan fry for about a minute or two on each side.

**To make sauce: combine about 1/4 plain yogurt with about 2 tablespoons basil, thyme, and paprika. Add a pinch of cayenne pepper. Add a drizzle of honey.

Take the flatbread and smear the sauce onto it. 

Cut up the tomatoes, cucumbers, and falafel, and add on top. Salt and pepper to taste.


Thursday, October 4, 2012

Recipe of the Moment: Two Bean Chili

It's starting to get cool here in New York, which means it's time for soup! Does chili count as soup? I think so.

I saw an amazing photo spread in Martha Stewart Living with chili, and I've been craving it ever since. Though since Martha's recipe was meat based, I found this great recipe on epicurious. I've actually made it before, and I thought it was on here, but apparently not. And it's a good thing too because I changed a bit this time, and I think it tastes even better than the original!

This is vegetarian, but if you wanted to add ground meat to it, go for it.

1 onion, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded, chopped
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
3 cups of water*
2 15-ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 15-ounce cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup flax meal*
2 tbsp sherry cooking wine
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
5 garlic cloves, diced
3 tsps cumin
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp basil
1 tsp thyme
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp red pepper flakes
olive oil

*If you don't have flax meal, you can substitute with bulgur. If you don't have that, you can also substitute with quinoa, but reduce the water if you do.

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.

Add onions, carrots, and peppers and saute until onion and carrots are almost tender, about 8-10 minutes.

Add the tomato, water, beans, flax meal, cooking wine, vinegar, garlic, and spices.

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat.

Let cook, stirring often, for about 20-30 minutes.

Ladle into bowls and serve. (I love crumbling up cornbread instead of crackers in mine.) Enjoy!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Recipe of the Moment: Cornbread

In honor of October Unprocessed, the first recipe I'm posting is for cornbread. I've never actually made this from scratch before, and I was surprised at how easy it turned out. I used Mark Bittman's recipe, and I love all the ideas he gave, such as adding bacon or shallots or herbs or jalapenos. They all sounded yummy, and perhaps I'll make that in the future, but for right now I just wanted to plain old cornbread.

Just a quick note: everyone in the comments seemed to be appalled that there is sugar in this recipe. "Real" cornbread does not have sugar in it. Of course, the only person who gave an alternate recipe had the base as Jiffy cornbread mix, so I discounter his/her opinion. So is the sugar necessary? I'm not sure. Probably not. But I added some anyway. Do whatever makes you feel right.

1 tbsp of butter, oil, or lard
1.5 cups of corn meal
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1.5 tsps baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1.25 cups milk, more if necessary

Preheat the oven to 375. Put the butter/oil/lard in cast iron or baking tray and place the empty pan in the oven.

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix the eggs into the milk, then stir the milk mixture into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Add more milk if mixture seems dry.

When the oven/pan is hot, carefully remove it from the oven. Add mixture to pan.

Bake for 30 minutes or until the top is lightly browned.