Latest

maple pecan granola

Michael’s Maple-Pecan Granola With Dried Cherries and Blueberries

In breakfast, favorite, snack, vegetarian On April 29, 2012 16 Comments

2012.04.15.maple.granola 057

Michael’s Maple-Pecan Granola With Dried Cherries and Blueberries (recipe by “Oishii”)

<This recipe was originally posted on 4/28/10>

Here is one of my all-time favorite recipes and I’m proud to say it was published in “Galena Local Favorites” cookbook back in 2010.

When we lived in the Andersonville neighborhood in Chicago, I had a lot of fun experimenting making granola with a variety of dried fruits sold at a wonderful Middle Eastern grocery store located there. Endless inspiration was found with their apples, strawberries, peaches, pears, cherries, blueberries, raisins, apricots, figs, prunes–you name it. I came up with this healthy and delicious granola, which is chocked full of pecans, dried cherries and blueberries, and contains no oil.

Serve the granola over yogurt or with milk.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups (packed) brown sugar (divided)
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 7 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup oat bran
  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • 1 cup dried blueberries
  • 1 cup dried sour cherries

Preparation

Position rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 350°F. Lightly grease a heavy-rimmed baking sheet with butter. Stir 1 cup of divided brown sugar and 1 cup maple syrup in small heavy saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves. Pour into large bowl; cool to lukewarm. Whisk in vanilla, cinnamon, and egg whites. Add rolled oats, oat bran, and remaining 1/2 cup brown sugar.

Spread mixture in even layer on prepared baking sheet. Bake 8 minutes. Using wide metal spatula, turn granola over. Bake another 8 minutes. Mix in pecans, dried blueberries, and cherries. Turn granola again with spatula. Bake a final 8 minutes or until golden brown. Turn granola once more and cool in pan. Remove from baking sheet with metal spatula.

Similar Recipes

Also try my honey-pear granola with pistachios and peanut butter granola with honey, dates, and raisins.

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I develop in my test kitchen. My inspiration comes from cooking magazines (Bon Appétit, Fine Cooking, Food & Wine), cookbooks, blogs, online food communities such as Chowhound.com, popular restaurants, tv shows, friends, and family.

Now it’s your turn. Do you make granola? What do you like to put in it? We would love to hear from you if you enjoyed this post. Don’t be shy! Leave a comment below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Purple Berry Smoothie

In breakfast, drinks, favorite, healthy, snack On January 31, 2012 12 Comments

Purple Berry Smoothie (recipe adapted from “Smoothies: 50 Recipes for High-Energy Refreshment,” by Mary Corpening Barber, Sara Corpening, and Lori Lynn Narlock)

Last month I was on a smoothie kick, nourishing my David back to health. You could call this one the “Get Well David Smoothie.” It is my favorite smoothie of all time. I love all the berries, which are rich in antioxidants, combined with the grape juice and vanilla yogurt. It’s smoothie perfection–well that is if you don’t mind a few seeds. Another thing I love about this drink is that I can find ingredients for it year round. When fresh berries are not available, they can be easily purchased in the frozen section of any of my grocery stores.

Special thanks to our friend Charissa who sent granola bars (pictured next to the smoothie) as part of a care package for David. When somebody loses his appetite and must take food with medicine at all hours of the day, these kinds of “super foods” are lifelines.

Ingredients
makes 2 servings

  • 1 1/2 cups (7 ounces) frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) frozen blackberries
  • 1 cup vanilla yogurt (I like Dannon brand)
  • 1 1/4 cups grape juice (100% fruit juice)

Preparation

Process all ingredients in a blender. Divide between two glasses.

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I develop in my test kitchen. My inspiration comes from cooking magazines (Bon Appétit, Fine Cooking, Food & Wine), cookbooks, blogs, online food communities such as Chowhound.com,  popular restaurants, tv shows, friends, and family.

Now it’s your turn. Do you make smoothies? Share a link to your favorite recipe in the comments section below. We would love to hear from you if you enjoyed this post. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Cod, Sugar Snap Peas, and Water Chestnuts with a Hot and Sour Ginger Sauce

In asian, Chinese, seafood On November 27, 2011 9 Comments

hot and sour cod 019_edited-1

Cod, Sugar Snap Peas, and Water Chestnut with a Hot and Sour Ginger Sauce (recipe by “Oishii”)

You’re probably familiar with sweet and sour sauce, but have you tried hot and sour sauce? This recipe is a long title for a delicious stir fry, inspired by a recent trip to Big Bowl restaurant with my friend David, who was visiting from Palm Springs. There was a time when perusing Big Bowl’s restaurant’s menu was a complete mystery, but thankfully I now find myself able to cook my way through much of it.  I was delighted to find a recipe for their tasty sauce in their wonderful cookbook Big Bowl Noodles and Rice: Fresh Asian Cooking from the Renowned Restaurant, which I referenced for my new dish. My original intention was to use haddock, but the cod at Trader Joe’s was ridiculously cheap, only $3.99/pound, so I opted to use that instead. Try this recipe with shrimp and scallops too.

Cod prep note:  If you use frozen seafood like me, I find that it is a good idea to weigh it after thawing. Inevitably you will lose a few ounces.  For this recipe I start with a pound of frozen cod. Make sure to dry the fish with a clean kitchen towel before adding the sesame oil and cornstarch.  This will reduce spattering of the oil and allow your fish to fry nicely, rather than steam.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons plus one teaspoon light soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 13 ounces cod, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil, plus more for before serving
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
  • 5-6 dried chiles
  • 1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 8 ounce can sliced water chestnuts, rinsed and drained
  • 1  1/4 cups (4.5 ounces) sugar snap peas, strung
  • 1/2 cup scallions, sliced (white and green parts)
  • kosher salt to taste
  • garnish: chopped cilantro (optional)
  • steamed Japanese rice (Kokuho Rose, Botan, or Nishiki brands)

Preparation

Make the sauce. In a small bowl whisk together the red wine vinegar, rice vinegar, light soy sauce, and sugar, and set aside.

Thoroughly dry the cod out with a kitchen flour sack towel and add to a medium sized bowl. Lightly toss the cod with the cornstarch and sesame oil, and set aside. Heat a large wok (or non-stick frying pan) over high heat and swirl in 1 tablespoon of peanut oil to coat pan. Lightly brown fish, sprinkle with some kosher salt, and remove from wok. Return to a medium sized bowl and set aside.

Wipe the wok clean. Heat the second tablespoon of peanut oil in wok over high heat. Add the dried chiles and fry until they darken. Add the garlic and ginger and stir fry about 30 seconds, being careful not to burn the garlic. Mix in the water chestnuts and sugar snap peas, and cook until the pea pods are nearly crisp tender. Gently fold in the cod. Add the sauce, bring to a rapid boil, and remove from heat. Sprinkle with kosher salt to taste. Add scallions. Garnish with cilantro and extra sesame oil if desired. Serve with steamed rice.

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

Now it’s your turn. Have you ever tried hot and sour sauce? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave some feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Shrimp Fried Rice (in my Monkey Bowl!)

In asian, Chinese, Japanese On October 11, 2011 11 Comments

shrimp fried rice 045

Shrimp Fried Rice (recipe by “Oishii”)

I purchased the cutest rice bowl with monkeys on it at Scratch ‘n Sniff in Oak Park. And that was my inspiration for making shrimp fried rice today. I just wanted to show off my new monkey bowl!!

This is what it looks like inside:

monkey rice bowl

OK, now back to our recipe! The prep notes below are long because I believe the technique for making fried rice can mean the difference between a good and a bad batch. It is not difficult to make though.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups cooked (“day old”) Japanese rice (Kokuho Rose, Botan, or Nishiki brands)
  • 1  1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1  1/2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 5.5 ounces medium-sized raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1  1/2 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup frozen mixed vegetables
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (Kikkoman brand)
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 scallions, chopped (use white and green parts)
  • freshly ground pepper
  • kosher salt

Preparation

Make “day old rice”: Measure out rice and water according to package directions and add to rice maker. Rinse several times with water until the water is no longer chalky. Add water back to rice maker to the measured level and let it set for at least 30 minutes or up to a day. Cook rice. When rice is finished, let it cool, and then put it in a freezer bag. Break up the rice in the bag so it doesn’t stick together. Put freezer bag in refrigerator or freezer to allow rice to dry out over night. This is crucial. Take rice out of refrigerator or freezer. Thaw if taking out of freezer. (I like to put it into the microwave oven for a few minutes until it is just soft enough to break apart.) Break up the rice inside the bag again.

Beat eggs in a small bowl and set aside.

In another small bowl mix shrimp with cornstarch, sesame oil, and garlic. Heat a very large non-stick fry pan or wok over high heat and coat with vegetable oil. Fry shrimp until is no longer pink. Toss in the rice and push contents of pan over to one side. Half of the pan will be empty.

Add beaten eggs to empty side of pan. Pretend you are making an omelet. Let eggs set on edges, push edges down a bit with flat rubber spatula, swirl runny eggs under edges. When omelet is almost set, gently fold rice mixture on top of it.

Quickly add oyster sauce and soy sauce. Toss in scallions and mixed veggies to rice and egg mixture and heat though. Season to taste with kosher salt, freshly ground pepper, and extra soy sauce.

If you like this recipe try: Michael’s Wisconsin Fried Rice

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

Now it’s your turn. Have you ever had a cute bowl you just had to show off? Do you have any fried rice recipes to share? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave some feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

 

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Cinnamon and Fig Cookie Ice Cream

In desserts, vegetarian On October 8, 2011 14 Comments

cinnamon fig cookie ice cream 010

While making filling for fresh fig bars, my take on the famous “Fig Newtons,” I started dreaming up all sorts of delicious uses for the fig jam like swirling it into coffee cakes and ice cream, or in fig tarts and pies.  I couldn’t resist the idea of adding chunks of my homemade fig cookies to cinnamon ice cream to create a new flavor. The cinnamon pastry of the fig bars along with its honey-cinnamon infused jam seemed like the perfect partner to mix in cinnamon ice cream. I quickly decided to whip up a batch before my cookies all but disappeared.

The base of this recipe is slightly adapted from “Cinnamon Ice Cream,” The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz. If you are not familiar with the book, I highly recommend it, as it is highly informative and entertaining. It’s the first cookbook I actually read cover to cover. This post is linked to “Sweets for Saturday #39,” a delicious dessert party on Sweet as Sugar Cookies blog.

Cinnamon and Fig Cookie Ice Cream (recipe by “Oishii!”)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh fig bars, chopped into 1″ squares
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 10  cinnamon sticks about 3″ long
  • 2 cups heavy cream, divided
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder

Preparation

Put the chopped fig squares in the bottom of your ice cream storage container and freeze.

Heat a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Add the milk, sugar, salt, cinnamon sticks, and 1 cup of heavy cream. Stir well to allow the sugar to dissolve. Remove from heat once it begins to bubble. Cover and let it steep for an hour. Remove and discard the cinnamon sticks.

Prepare an ice bath in a large bowl and set aside.

Reheat the cinnamon liquid. Add the second cup of heavy cream to another large bowl, and set a fine mesh strainer on top. Whisk the egg yolks in a medium bowl. Slowly add the warm liquid to the egg yolks, whisking constantly, then add the egg yolk mixture back into the sauce pan. Over medium heat stir the mixture constantly with a wooden spoon (or a heat-resistant silicone spatula), until the custard thickens enough to coat the back of the spoon. Press the custard through the strainer with the spoon. Whisk in cinnamon powder until well incorporated. Set the custard over the ice bath. Stir until cool.

Refrigerate the custard 8 hours or overnight. Freeze it in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Fold in the fresh fig bar pieces. Freeze ice cream until solid.

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

Now it’s your turn. Have you ever created a new ice cream flavor? Do you have any fresh fig recipes to share? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave some feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Fresh Fig Bars

In desserts, snack, vegetarian On October 5, 2011 15 Comments

fresh fig bars.2 007

I was delighted to find 2-pound boxes of fresh black mission figs on sale the other day at Trader Joe’s. I knew exactly what I was going to make with them. Homemade “Fig Newtons.”

This recipe was inspired by many. I adapted the dough from “Fig Pillows” in The Good Cookie by Tish Boyle, but learned how to make fresh fig jam from two fellow bloggers. Thanks to Cozy, Delicious (Homemade Fig Newtons) and Bakin’ and Eggs (Fresh Fig Bars).  I was also hoping to develop a special recipe for my friend Mandy at The Complete Bookbook, who has a fig tree in her yard!

The filling is fun to make and it fills the home with a pleasant scent of honey and cinnamon. The cookies go great with coffee or tea, and the texture even improves the next day. This recipe is linked in to Sweet as Sugar Cookies’ Sweets for Saturday #38. It is an amazing collection of bloggers’ favorite desserts. Check it out!

Fresh Fig Bars (recipe by “Oishii!”)

Ingredients

filling

  • 2 cups fresh chopped figs (12.5 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 cinnamon sticks

dough

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

decoration

  • two tablespoons heavy cream
  • course sugar (such as Sugar in the Raw)

Preparation

Make the fig filling. Heat a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat.  Add figs, honey, water, and cinnamon sticks. Heat over medium heat until the mixture bubbles and then turn down to very low heat. Barely simmer, stirring occasionally, for about an hour or until it thickens to consistency of jam. Add more water if necessary. Cool, and if desired, process in a food processor. You will have well over one cup of filling.

Make the dough. Over a large mixing bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer cream together the butter and brown sugar. Add the eggs and vanilla extract. Mix in the dry ingredients just until a dough forms. Flour your hands (dough will be sticky!) and form into two rectangles. Wrap each in saran wrap, and refrigerate for at least an hour.

Assemble and bake. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a heavy-rimmed baking sheet with butter. Prepare two sheets of parchment paper the size of the baking sheet. Lightly flour one rectangle of dough over one sheet of parchment paper. Cover dough with the second sheet of parchment paper and roll out to a size slightly less than the baking sheet. Peel parchment paper off top, flip it over, peel bottom sheet of paper off and place dough onto baking sheet. Evenly spread 1  1/4 cups of fig filling onto dough. Roll out another sheet of dough the same size, and put it on top of the first one covered with fig filling. Crimp ends together. Brush top of dough with heavy cream and sprinkle with course sugar such as Sugar in the Raw. Bake in oven about 30 minutes until golden brown. Cool a bit, cut off ends, and into squares.

Ideas: Try using some of these bars in Cinnamon and Fig Cookies Ice Cream.

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

Fig season is very short. Do you have any fresh fig recipes to share? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave some feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Michael’s Chili

In autumn, comfort food, soup, winter On September 30, 2011 2 Comments

Michael's Chili 007

It’s been a cold and dreary autumn week in Chicago, which put me in the mood for a pot of my homemade chili. I’ve been making this chili for 20 years. I can’t say it’s authentic, but it’s my version of my mom’s recipe, which was a family favorite. I’ve finally decided to write it down, rather than rely on my memory each time for the amount of seasonings and even it’s basic ingredients. It tastes wonderful with this buttery cornbread or my friend Mandy’s Cheese and Onion Bread (from The Complete Cookbook blog). 

Michael’s Chili (recipe by “Oishii!”)

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped (12 ounces)
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 pounds ground beef (85% lean)
  • 1  28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes (don not drain)
  • 1  14.5-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes (do not drain)
  • 1  6-ounce can tomato paste
  • 3  15.5-ounce cans kidney beans (do not drain)
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder (1 use Penzey’s medium hot chili powder)
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • garnishes: freshly grated parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese, and sour cream

Preparation

Heat a large soup kettle over medium high heat. Add vegetable oil and fry the onion with the garlic until the onion softens. Mix in the ground beef and fry until no longer pink. Add the whole peeled tomatoes (with the juice), tomato paste, and kidney beans (with the juice). Season with chili powder and cumin. Once the contents starts to boil, turn down the heat to low and simmer for about an hour until it cooks down and thickens. Crush tomatoes with back of mixing spoon. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

Serve with freshly grated parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese, and sour cream on top of chili.

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

Now it’s your turn. How do you like your chili? Do you ever add beans? What about elbow macaroni? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Feel free to leave a link to your favorite chili recipe in the comments section below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Omuraisu (Japanese-Style Omelet Stuffed with Chicken and Rice)

In asian, breakfast, Japanese, lunch, poultry On September 27, 2011 4 Comments

Omuraisu 008

For those of you unfamiliar with Japanese home cooking, I offer you omuraisu (オムライス or omurice), a Japanese-style omelet commonly stuffed with a chicken-rice filling, and flavored with ketchup. The name of this popular fusion dish is a contracted form of the words omelet and rice. It’s enjoyed by children of all ages everywhere in Japan, and is found in endless variations. The combination of eggs and rice is surprisingly delicious and satisfying, and these omelets, like their “western” counterpart, can be eaten any time of day.

This recipe is inspired by Cooking With Dog, the Japanese cooking show hosted by no other than Francis the poodle.

Omuraisu (Japanese-Style Omelet Stuffed with Chicken and Rice) (recipe by “Oishii!”)

Makes 4 omelets

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons and 2 teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 8 ounces chicken breast, finely chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 3 large button mushrooms, finely chopped (=2/3 cup after chopping)
  • 1 tablespoon white wine
  • 2 cups steamed rice (Japanese brands such as Kokuho Rose, Botan, or Nishiki)
  • 1/3 cup ketchup, plus extra for garnishing
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 8 eggs, beaten
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons half and half

Preparation

Make the filling: Heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large (12″) non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Sauté the onion until it softens. Mix in the chicken and garlic, and brown the chicken. Add the mushrooms and continue frying. Add the wine and deglaze; cook until it evaporates.  Turn off the heat, and spoon in the rice and ketchup. Toss the mixture with a pair of heat resistant silicone spatulas (or spoons) until well combined. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Divide omelet filling evenly among four small bowls and set aside.

Make the omelets: In a medium sized mixing bowl whisk together the eggs and half and half. (Alternatively whisk together 2 eggs and 2 teaspoons of half and half  in four separate bowls.) Heat a medium sized (10″) non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add a teaspoon of vegetable oil and swirl it around the pan. Pour in 1/4 of the egg mixture. Once egg is nearly set, add one bowl of filling on top of the egg, and fold the egg over to seal the edge. Tuck the sealed edge under and carefully slide out of pan onto a plate. Repeat this three more times for remaining omelets. Garnish each omelet with additional ketchup. Feel free to get creative and write something with the ketchup such as a smiley face, a heart, or a child’s name!

Omurice

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

Have you ever had some interesting omuraisu variations before? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave some feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Quinoa with Roasted Butternut Squash, Parsnips, and Carrots

In autumn, seasonal, side dish, vegetarian On September 5, 2011 4 Comments

Quinoa with butternut squash 047

It’s not quite autumn yet, but our temperatures have finally “fallen” and I’m starting to crave seasonal foods. I’m kicking off the season with a delicious quinoa recipe, which would make a perfect Thanksgiving dish. The cayenne pepper nicely balances out the sweetness of the roasted butternut squash and carrots.

Quinoa with Roasted Butternut Squash, Parsnips, and Carrots (recipe by “Oishii!”)

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups carrots, cut into 3/4″ pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups parsnips, cut into 3/4″ pieces
  • 2 cups butternut squash, cut into 3/4″ pieces
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups quinoa
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 3/4 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock for a vegetarian dish)

Preparation

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a heavy rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut parchment in half and fold into two pockets. Spread out the carrots and parsnips into a single layer on one half and the butternut squash on the other. Drizzle vegetables with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Sprinkle with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Roast about 30 minutes until tender. The butternut squash will be ready before the carrots and parsnips.

Meanwhile, rinse the quinoa with water in a fine mesh strainer.

Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Sauté onion and garlic until the onion softens. Add the quinoa. Cook for a few minutes. Add turmeric, cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, and chicken or vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and cook covered until quinoa is done and liquid is absorbed. Add some water if necessary. Mix cooked quinoa and roasted vegetables in a large bowl. Add more kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Serve warm or at room temperature.

More quinoa recipes: Quinoa and Vegetable Paella

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

Do you have some interesting recipes for quinoa? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave some feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook

Thick and Chunky Sloppy Joes

In beef, comfort food, lunch On August 29, 2011 1 Comment

Sloppy Joes 038

I feel bad going into full carnivore mode when my blog is getting a ton of vegan traffic from a popular quinoa posting over the weekend (quinoa and vegetable paella). My original intention was to stuff bell peppers with sloppy joes tonight, but I wanted to get a good picture of a sandwich first, and it is difficult to capture them up close. My photo shoot really slowed me down, and I never got around to stuffing the peppers.

Sloppy Joes are a very casual American comfort food and a perennial kids’ favorite. I’m not even sure if I’ve had them in a restaurant before. Everyone loves their mom’s recipe so they vary from family to family. In my recipe I use 90% lean ground beef, and some jalapeño peppers and hot sauce to add some heat. As you can see from the title, I also like my sloppy joes thick and chunky, with plenty of vegetables. I make a special point not to overcook the celery and green bell peppers in them. I prefer ketchup to tomato sauce, and finally, I believe the key to my recipe is Worcestershire sauce and plenty of tomato paste, which makes them thick and flavorful.

Thick and Chunky Sloppy Joes (recipe by “Oishii!”)

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onions
  • 4 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large jalapeño, seeded and minced
  • 1 lb. 6 ounces (22 ounces) of ground beef – I prefer 90% lean
  • 1 cup celery, chopped into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups green bell pepper, chopped into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce (e.g. Trader Joe’s jalapeño pepper sauce)
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1  6-ounce can tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup water
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • hamburger buns

Preparation

Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium high heat. Sauté onion, garlic, and jalapeño pepper in vegetable oil until the onion starts to brown and soften. Add the ground beef and fry until no longer pink. Add celery and green bell pepper and cook until it starts to soften a bit. Stir in Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and ketchup. Add tomato paste and 3/4 cup water. Stir until tomato paste is incorporated into the sauce. Turn down heat to low and simmer until the vegetables are cooked, but not over soft, and the mixture is thick. Add more liquid if necessary. Add kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

Serve on hamburger buns open or closed face with dill pickles and potato chips on the side.

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I develop in my test kitchen. My inspiration comes from cooking magazines (Bon Appétit, Fine Cooking, Food & Wine), cookbooks, blogs, online food communities such as Chowhound.com, popular restaurants, tv shows, friends, and family.

Now it’s your turn! How do you like your sloppy joes? What is considered children’s food where you come from? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave some feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook