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Posts Tagged ‘Casseroles’

This dish would make a great breakfast casserole to accompany some fresh fruit on those busy holiday mornings (think of it as a freeing version of hash browns). It would also make a wonderful, new side to those lovely vegan holiday entrees – such as black bean tamales! I can’t stress enough how wonderful and comforting shredded potatoes can be, and that’s exactly the feelings you want to inspire during the holidays…am I right?! 😉 So try this out if you’re looking for something different to accompany your holiday feast.. This will serve about 4-6 (depending on how in love your guests are with potatoes, and how many other accompaniments you have).

Ingredients:

2 TBSP canola or olive oil
3 medium gold potatoes, shredded
1/2 large yellow onion, diced
1 TBSP minced garlic
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp ground oregano
1/2 tsp ground thyme
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
1/4 C veggie broth

Directions:

1. Pour oil in the bottom of an 8X8 baking dish. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Shred potatoes into a bowl. Dice onion, mince garlic, and add to potatoes. Stir to combine. Add in spices, stir to combine. Pour into baking dish, and spread evenly.


3. Pour in 1/4 C broth, cover with foil, and bake in 350°F oven for 45 minutes.
4. Turn heat up to 400°F. Uncover and cook for an additional 10 minutes to brown the top of the casserole. Enjoy!

Happy Baking!

On This Day In History: Giving Thanks, Tex-Mex Style

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potato-tomato casserole1So Mandy – a friend of mine and Jo’s – recently directed me to her blog, Sweet and Savory. While not a vegan blog, some of the recipes looked to good not to attempt veganization. And, in true Primate fashion, I’m instantly drawn to the first potato dish I see. This recipe was pure genius, layers of potatoes and tomatoes…ugh, can it get any better? So I tell her that I’m going to try out the recipe….and she says to me “I cannot imagine it being good without all the cheese, so you will have to let me know!” Of course, as vegans we know that sometimes things can be better without cheese if not just as tasty, so I had no doubt I could make it veganly to-die-for. And hoo-doggy is this dish super great! My usual secret ingredient to provide fatty goodness and creamy lusciousness, almond meal. I went to the fridge and realized I had taken my almond meal and left it at dad’s house…so I had none and was forced to grind my own slivered almonds into almond meal. I left it a bit chunkier than if I had used almond meal, so that can be an option. I think it would be good either way! So here’s the recipe, and let’s all thank Mandy for providing us with such wonderful inspiration! 🙂

Ingredients:

2 large red or yellow onions (I used on of each) – sliced in rounds on a mandolin
2-3 large potatoes, thinly sliced – a mandoline makes this easy
3-4 fresh tomatoes (the freshest and most flavorful you can find)
A few leaves of fresh basil (or oregano and thyme if you’re not into basil)
6 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
1/3-1/2 C ground almonds or almond meal
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup of water

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Brush a solid amount of olive oil on the bottom of a medium-large baking dish. Arrange a layer of onions on the bottom of the dish. Next, arrange a layer of potatoes and then a layer of tomatoes on top of that.

onion slicespotato slices 2. Drizzle with olive oil, a little almond meal – about a handful maybe, salt, and pepper on top of all of it. For the final layer, overlap potatoes and tomatoes (ratatouille-style). Garnish with torn pieces of basil, remaining almond meal, salt, pepper, and the remainder of the oil.

potato-tomato top layerpotato-tomato-almond 3. Pour the water down the corner to get it to the bottom and not run all the spices off. Bake for 1 hour or until all layers of potato are tender. The top should be lightly browned and have crisp edges.

potato-tomato casserole

Happy Baking!

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DF: Pasta Bake

pasta bakeAnother Dad-friendly recipe – it’s ready within 30 minutes, minimal chopping (if any), and makes leftovers for lunches! I call for veggies like grape tomatoes and baby spinach which require no prep other than washing and pre-minced garlic (or pre-roasted garlic cloves) and shallots, but feel free to chop your own (I was just aiming for a no-excuse dish that Dad could make). You can also choose to add in your favorite veg if you don’t mind chopping – like diced bell pepper or onions. And by the way, how awesome is that casserole dish of mine? pasta bake1It’s the old-school ones from the 70’s that we had growing up!

Ingredients:

1 TBSP olive oil
1.5 C orzo pasta
1 (loose) C baby spinach
1/2 C cherry or grape tomatoes
1 TBSP pasta bake2pre-minced garlic (or handful of roasted whole garlic cloves)
1 TBSP pre-minced shallots
1 C (or 1 can) cooked chickpeas or cannelini beans
1 jar favorite pasta sauce
1 C vegetable broth
1 tsp each herbs (fresh or dried): pasta bake3basil, oregano, thyme, sage
1/2 C peas

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Drizzle 1 TBSP olive oil on the bottom of a casserole dish (13X9 or 10X10 shown in photo). pasta bake5Combine all ingredients into the dish (except the peas), give it a stir, and cover with glass lid or aluminum foil.
2. Bake for 15 minutes, give it another stir, and bake an additional 10 minutes. Add peas and bake for a final 5-8 minutes. Let cool about 5-10 minutes, pasta bake6serve up in bowls and garnish with a fresh sprig of basil or herb of choice. Serve alongside some herb foccacia or rosemary potato bread and a nice glass of Chianti Classico (Brolio 2003 is a good bottle if you can get your hands on it).

*Note: You can also reduce the quantities by half and make this in a smaller dish. You could also opt to combine everything in a big mixing bowl, then aliquot into two casserole dishes if all you have are smaller ones. Dad, you could mix this up in a bowl and pour what you could into the 9X9 red le Creuset, and the remainder in the smaller le Creuset that’s with the other ‘veggie only’ items in your kitchen.

pasta bake7

Happy Cooking!

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After chatting with Jo about this new dish I came up with over the weekend, we’ve decided to create a whole new category. The current category, SOP, is for those recipes that should be standard operating procedure in any kitchen. This new category, DF, will be for those recipes which are ‘Dad-friendly.’ The criteria for DF recipes are as follows: minimal input ( <5 minutes prep), maximum output (multiple meals from one prep, tons of veg, super healthy). I was chatting with Dad on Friday night and he was all excited about the sun tea, yada yada. And I asked him if he’d made the red beans and rice soup recipe I posted just for him! His excuse, ‘I’ve been so busy with the back porch that I don’t have time to cook.’ This prompted me to circumvent this excuse by concocting something so simple that he wouldn’t be able to say he doesn’t have time or energy to cook. This category will take neither time nor energy to put together! For our maiden voyage into DF-territory, I give you Baked Rice Casserole! There is minimal prep (maybe 5 minutes of effort), but it does take some time in the oven, so plan accordingly (at least 1.5 hrs) – hey, there is no perfect system, we’re not the Jetsons 🙂 ! This recipe makes about 6-8 servings…

Ingredients:

1 C brown basmati, rinsed and drained
1 can black beans, slightly drained (but you’ll want some of the juice)
1 TBSP pre-minced garlic
1 TBSP pre-minced shallots
2 C vegetable broth
1 C grape tomatoes
3/4 C frozen corn
1 C baby spinach
fresh herbs, 1 tsp each: oregano, thyme, sage; torn with fingers
1 sprig, fresh rosemary
salt and pepper to taste
1/2-1 C frozen peas (all depends on how much you love peas – I like about 1 C)
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Dump all ingredients, except the peas and cilantro, into a deep casserole dish or dutch oven. Stir to combine.


2. Bake in oven, covered, 1 hour 15 minutes. After 1 hour 15 minutes, uncover and cook an additional 20 minutes.

3. Add peas, and cook an additional 10-15 min – until all the moisture is absorbed and the rice is done.

4. Let cool for about 10-15 minutes, stir in fresh cilantro. Serve with steamed or grilled vegetables or even tamales (I’m jealous), wrapped in a tortilla topped with fresh pico de gallo or tomatillo salsa for a burrito meal, or over tortilla chips topped with salsa for a nacho-style meal. You could also squeeze some fresh lime juice onto the finished dish for a tangy kick! This would also make a good stuffing (once baked) for stuffed peppers… The possibilities are endless!!

If you have some leftover rice (already cooked), use it (about 1.5-2 C)! It’ll cut down on the baking time…
Possible veg additions if you don’t mind chopping: tomatillos, red bell pepper, spicy pepper (if you want heat), even red potatoes cut into small cubes…
Possible spice additions: 1 tsp of chili powder, garlic powder (for extra garlicky goodness), cumin…any favorite spice you like! Or even use Indian spices for a more curry flavor..mm…

Variations: You could exchange out the brown rice for millet or quinoa – which I suspect would cut down on the baking time. You could check at 1 hour, and either option would probably (but hasn’t been personally tested) be done, but you’ll have to check. Using either millet or quinoa would also make this gluten-free

Happy Baking!

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Mmmm….we all know I LOVE potatoes…and I absolutely LOVE creamy potato gratin. I especially love that 2008 is the year of the potato, which gives me an unnecessary excuse to eat potatoes. This recipe doesn’t call for any cream, thus not only lowering the calorie count, but increases the flavor 10-fold. I sliced my potatoes with a mandoline, but if you don’t have one, not to worry. You’ll just have to slice them buy hand – which can sometimes lean towards a fun time and interesting dish. Try to get them as consistent in thickness as possible – as this will keep the cooking time even. If you can’t get them too even, test the softness in a thicker part of the casserole.

Ingredients:

4 med-large Gold potatoes, washed and thinly sliced
1.5-2 C vegetable broth
1 TBSP minced shallots
1 TBSP minced garlic
1 tsp whole coriander seeds *optional
salt and pepper to taste
fresh sprigs of Rosemary, marjoram, and oregano

Directions:

1. In small saucepan, saute shallot and garlic (and the optional whole coriander seeds) in olive oil over medium heat, about 5 min.
2. Add 1.5 C vegetable broth and fresh herbs. Turn heat to medium-low while cutting potatoes.
3. Preheat oven to 350. Slice potatoes thinly with a mandoline (or knife).
4. Cover casserole dish with one layer of potatoes (no need to grease casserole dish). Pour a bit of the broth mixture over the potatoes. Salt and pepper to taste – but not to 100% taste.**Make sure the Rosemary sprig is saved for laying on top and not layered within the gratin.
5. Add another layer of potatoes, and pour more broth. Continue this until all potatoes are layered. Salt and pepper to final taste..
6. Top with remaining broth-veg mixture. If need be, use the additional 1/2 C broth.
7. Bake, covered, at 350 40-45 minutes (test for doneness). Turn on broiler, broil for 2-3 minutes until crispy on top.
8. Remove rosemary sprig from top. Let cool in dish 5-10 minutes. Serve hot!

Happy Cooking!

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These enchiladas are so good, I could eat them for days and days. Of course, they usually don’t last that long. If you’re new to tomatillos, they look kind of like green tomatoes in a papery husk. You can find them in most grocery stores and farmer’s markets during the summer. The best ones haven’t started to wrinkle and have filled up or burst free of their husks. If you’re growing them yourself, pick them before they turn purple.  After you have the filling made up, give it a taste, but beware, you may end up eating the whole pan before the enchiladas even get assembled. In fact, the filling could be used as a dip for parties!

Ingredients:

Tomatillos
2 lbs tomatillos – chopped
1 large onion – chopped
2 cloves garlic – minced
1 large bag spinach – chopped
1.5 C cooked black beans
1/2 jar New Mexico Green Chili (optional)
1 bunch cilantro
1 package corn tortillas (blue or yellow), torn into quarters
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
2 tsp salt, or to taste

Instructions:
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Green_Enchiladas

2.  Saute onion and garlic in canola oil until slightly brown.

3.  Add tomatillos, salt,cumin, coriander and green chili (for medium heat, use 1/2 jar, for hot use whole jar, or leave out if you’re wimpy about spiciness). Cook covered for 5-7 minutes.

4.  Add spinach and beans. Cook uncovered until most of the spinach is wilted.

5.  Add cilantro just before assembling the enchiladas in the pan.

6.  In some kind of oven pan (rectangular brownie pan, or whatever you have), put down one layer of tortillas, followed by a layer of tomatillo mixture. Keep alternating layers until pan is almost full, ending with the sauce on top.

7.  Bake at 350 for ~30 minutes.
Variations:
Experiment with throwing just about anything into the green sauce, like yellow squash, mushrooms, or potatoes. If you’re feeling ambitious, or want to impress people, roll the enchiladas instead of layering.

Green_Enchiladas2

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