Archive for June, 2008

Porcini orzo

Some of the orzo got a little burnt, resulting in the variations of color.

Orzo, being a rice shaped pasta, gives you the quick cooking time of pasta and the applications of rice. You can make a fast faux risotto or a substitute rice salad. I prefer not to cook orzo in a large pot of water like you would most pasta. I like to toast the dry orzo in a pan with some oil till golden brown before adding liquid to it. This ensures the pasta won’t become too soggy and adds more flavor to the finished dish.

Porcini Orzo (for 2 or 4 as sides)

  • 1 small onion diced
  • 1 pint cremini or button mushrooms diced
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 oz dried porcini (+ 2/3 cup hot water)
  • 1 cup dry orzo
  • 1 1/3 cup water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp of chopped rosemary or thyme
  • 1/2 cup peas (frozen or fresh)
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • pepper to taste
About 3oz or however much that looks like to you.
  1. Soak porcini in hot water for about 15-20mins, when softened, cut the porcini into semi large pieces, reserve the liquid (you can strain it through a coffee filter to get out all the grit).
  2. In a wide pot or sauté pan on medium high heat, add in oil to coat pan. Then add the diced onions, stir, and cook till translucent with slight browning on edges.
  3. Add bay leaf and orzo to the pan, stirring a lot to make sure the orzo is coated in oil and doesn’t get burned.
  4. When orzo looks toasted, add in diced mushrooms and salt, stir and cook till mushrooms have shrunk.
  5. Add in porcini and its liquid, the peas, along with the 1 1/3 cup of water. Stir thoroughly and bring to a simmer, turn heat down to low and cover for 9-11mins.
  6. There should be no liquid left after that, but if it’s too dry and the pasta is kind of hard, stir in another 1/4 cup of (hot) water and cook on medium low till it’s absorbed. If there is too much liquid after the initial cooking, just cook it uncovered till it dries up.
  7. Stir in chopped herbs and pepper at the end.

You can also add in some parmesan or leave it as is and it’d be totally vegan.

-Lina
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June 29, 2008 at 2:35 am 5 comments

Very happy

TasteSpotting is back!!!!
-L

June 28, 2008 at 4:52 am Leave a comment

Rosemary bread

My rosemary plant has more than doubled in size. Here I added two tablespoons of chopped rosemary into some dough. The final shape was an accident, I flattened it out too much in the center. The slits were done with a pair of kitchen shears (easier than knives).

-L

June 22, 2008 at 6:22 am 5 comments

Waiting patiently

   I didn’t have a food post ready but I’ve been wanting for weeks to share this photo.

Happy news! According to tastespotting, they are close to resolving their issues and will be making a comeback soon. 🙂

-Lina

June 20, 2008 at 5:10 am 1 comment

Raspberry lemon madeleines

Originally I was going to have a few more posts of savory food but the closing of Tastespotting king of caught me off guard (I couldn’t bring myself to post) and I’m still stunned and sadden. It was what compelled me to start food blogging. I hope somehow there will come something that can fill the void in the online food world.

edit 6/28… Tastespotting is back!!!!!!!!

The heat wave let up a bit so I’m able to bake again. Here’s another quick variation on madeleines.

Raspberry Lemon Madeleines

  • 1/3 cup organic shortening or butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup raspberries or 2 tbsp raspberry preserves (cut back on the sugar a bit)
  • zest of half lemon
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup almond flour/meal
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • powder sugar to dust (optional)

Cream together sugar and shortening, then incorporate one egg at a time, add lemon zest/juice and raspberries. Mix till completely blended. Add in almond flour, and mix thoroughly. Then add flour and baking powder, mix briefly till smooth. Preheat oven to 350º. Grease pans with shortening or butter. Try to under fill the molds, and you can get make 2 batches of the full sized pans or about 3 batches of minis. Bake for 18-20min (for full sized pans, 13-15 for minis) when the edges just turn golden brown. Cool for 5min before popping them out. Dust with powder sugar.

-L

June 14, 2008 at 11:22 pm Leave a comment

Soba salad for hot days

  Soba salad with smoked mackerel.

The first day of the heat wave, I was mostly hiding out in my room with the air conditioner. I wasn’t willing to cook a big meal or even stand in front of the stove for long. Soba noodles are noodles made with buckwheat flour; it has slightly nutty flavor, and is all around healthy. The cooking time is only three minutes in boiling water. In colder weather I love soba in hot broth. In summer, they can be eaten chilled with cold dipping sauce. I like it hot or cold with tororo (grated yam). And of course as a salad one dish light meal.

Soba Salad (for 2)

  • 6oz dried soba (2/3 of most small packages)
  • 4 cups (roughly) baby salad greens
  • 1/2 small onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 scallion (thinly sliced)
  • 3 tbsp dried wakame 
  • smoked fish or leftover meats (optional)
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • ponzu + olive oil or salad dressing or…

soy citrus dressing:

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • juice of 1 lemon or lime
  • few drops of fish sauce (optional)
  • few drops of sesame oil
  • 2 tsp olive (or canola) oil
  • 3-4 tbsp water to dilute

Cook noodles in boiling water for 3mins, drain and rinse under cold water till completely cooled. Set aside and let water continue to drain away. Rehydrate wakame in some hot water, let it sit for 2mins or so, then drain. Toss cold noodles, vegetables, fish, and wakame together with dressing, top with sesame seeds.

To make it completely vegan, leave out any fish/meat or fish sauce. You can add firm tofu or just leave it plain. I didn’t have any at the time, but thinly slice cucumbers would also be great. Wakame adds a really nice ‘sea’ flavor but if you can’t get any, you can also add other seaweeds like finely shredded nori at the end.

-Lina

June 9, 2008 at 4:40 am 4 comments


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