Showing posts with label Garlic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Garlic. Show all posts

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Baked Zucchini with Spicy Tomatoes #SundaySupper

The application of a little caramelizing heat brings out the best in these tender baby zucchini making sure they can still compete with the spicy tomatoes and feta cheese baked on top.  This dish is great as a vegetarian main or as a side dish. 

What’s your weakness?
I love a Cheeto or Dorito as much as the next person. Okay, okay, you’ve got me. I probably love them more. I’m not a big sweet eater so fatty and salty are definitely my dietary weak spots. That said, if I can add cheese to a vegetable dish – everybody saw my Sunday Supper potato chard bake a couple of weeks ago, right? – then my needs are satisfied in a much healthier manner.

This dish of baby zucchini topped with spicy tomatoes, feta cheese and crunchy pumpkin seeds was so good that we had it as a main course one night and delighted in it as a side dish the very next night. I was sad when it was gone.

The “unprocessed” challenge
This week Sunday Supper is featuring recipes that forgo the weird chemical ingredients that no one can pronounce, using just whole foods in their mostly natural state, if you don’t count things like pasteurizing milk to kill the harmful bacteria or making cheese out of it. I guess technically those are “processed” but, as far as I’m concerned, that’s in a good way. Our host this week is DB from Crazy Foodie Stunts and he got his inspiration for this theme from Andrew Wilder’s October Unprocessed Challenge. Whether you are willing to take the challenge or not, I'm sure we can all agree that if we can't say the ingredient or spell it, we probably shouldn't be eating very much of it!

These zucchini with spicy tomatoes, on the other hand, we will be eating more often.

1 lb 2 oz or 510g baby zucchini
1 lb 2 oz or 510g ripe tomatoes
1 small onion (about 3 oz or 85g)
2 red chilies
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon sugar
3 1/2 oz or 100g feta (I like one that is made with sheep’s milk but use your favorite.)
1/4 cup or 20g pumpkin seeds

Cut the stems off of your little zucchini and then halve them lengthwise.

Chop your onions and tomatoes and mince the chilies and garlic.

Preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C.

Heat one tablespoon of the olive oil in a non-stick skillet and fry the zucchini halves until they are browned nicely on both sides.

Put them in a baking dish in a single layer.

Add the other tablespoon of olive oil to the pan along with the onion, garlic and chilies. Sauté for a few minutes until they soften.

Add in the chopped tomatoes, the smoked paprika and the sugar. Cook for about seven or eight minutes over a medium heat until the tomatoes start breaking down.

Spoon the spicy tomatoes over the zucchini in the ovenproof dish.

Crumble the feta over the tomatoes and sprinkle everything with the pumpkin seeds.

Bake in your preheated oven for about half an hour.

It’s done with the feta is nicely browning and the dish is bubbling hot and brown all around the edges.


Check out all the great “unprocessed” recipes we have for you today!

Alluring Appetizers and Snacks
Stunning Sides
Enticing Entreés
Decadent Desserts

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7 p.m. ET.

Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

 Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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Friday, August 29, 2014

Spicy Roasted Bacon Tomato Cauliflower #BaconMonth

The rich garlicky sun-dried tomato pesto adds a lovely flavor to the cauliflower as it roasts in a little bacon fat. A generous sprinkling of crispy bacon and Parmesan finish this dish to perfection. This one's a side dish that wouldn't mind taking center stage. 

Bacon Month Week Four
It is with great sadness that I tell you this is my final post for Bacon Month. Not that I will stop cooking or baking with bacon! As my daughters can attest, most of my best recipes start with bacon and its best friend, garlic. But it’s been great fun being part of the Bacon Month group, lead by our organizer and chief cheerleader of all things bacon, Julie from White Lights on Wednesday. We have had some belly laughs sharing bacon cartoons and quips in the Facebook group, and I’ve especially enjoyed having more inspirational bacon deliciousness at my fingertips. I know I’ll be coming back to the link list of photos often until I get through all the recipes I want to try. Make sure you scroll down to see the recipes from this week and enter the draw for our final cookbook giveaway!

This recipe is adapted from these two recipes from Eggton and Steamy Kitchen.

1/2 cup sundried tomatoes (dry, not packed in oil – about 1 1/4 oz or 35g by weight)
4 slices streaky thin cut smoky bacon (about 3 1/8 oz or 90g)
1 head cauliflower (Mine weighed 1 2/3 lbs or 765g)
5 medium garlic cloves
1 hot chili pepper
3/4 ox or 20g grated Parmesan cheese, plus an equal amount for serving
Olive oil

Place your sun-dried tomatoes in a small bowl and pour hot water over them. Set aside to soak and plump up.

Chop your bacon into small pieces and spread them around on a large baking pan. Put the pan in the oven and turn it on to preheat to 400°F or 200°C. The bacon will bake and get crispy as the oven preheats so keep an eye on it.

Meanwhile, cut the green leaves off of your cauliflower and break or cut it into florets.

Check on your bacon!

Drain the tomatoes but keep the water. Put the tomatoes, garlic, chili pepper and  Parmesan in the blender or food processor. Add some of the tomato soaking water and process until smooth. If it is too thick, just keep adding the water, a little at a time.

Check on your bacon in the oven. If it’s already crispy, take the pan from the oven and use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon pieces, leaving the bacon fat behind in the pan.

Put your cauliflower in a large bowl and pour the sauce over it.

Stir well to coat the florets.

Put your sauced cauliflower florets in the baking pan, stem side up, and separated so that they can get roasted.  If you make a big pile, they’ll just steam.

Roast for 15-20 minutes in your preheated oven, then turn the cauliflower florets over to roast the other side. Drizzle with a little olive oil or more bacon fat if you have some handy.

Put the pan back in the oven for another 15-20 minutes or until the cauliflower is done to your liking.

To serve, scrape the roasted cauliflower, and all the good, roasted sticky bits from the pan, into a serving bowl. Sprinkle on the crispy bacon pieces and another generous handful of freshly grated Parmesan.


Are you ready for more bacon deliciousness?!

Now for the The Bacon Cookbook* giveaway! Please be aware that the book will only be shipped to US addresses. Canadian winners will receive an Amazon egift card for the price of the book. Full disclosure details can be found by clicking on Terms and Conditions on the Rafflecopter. This cookbook prize is sponsored by Julie of White Lights on Wednesday.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*This is an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy after clicking on the link, I earn some small change for referring you to Amazon, at no extra cost to you.

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Thursday, May 8, 2014

Spicy Pepperoni and Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

Pepperoni blended with sun-dried tomatoes, pine nuts, garlic and arugula makes the perfect spicy pesto to serve over pasta or to spread on crusty bread as an appetizer. Or you can use it as pizza sauce. 

It’s funny how something catches my eye. It could be a sign on the highway or a colorful label on a grocery store shelf or a photo on Pinterest that somehow jumps out as I scroll by, but I am always on the lookout for the unusual and the humorous. My Facebook friends and followers on Instagram know what I’m talking about.

Bowels for your salad?

Dirt is good? Thanks for that, OMO. I no longer need detergent.

Is that meant to be a cantaloupe “bunny” amongst the carrots?
I'm being "ware" but what on earth is a road surprise?

The most ENORMOUS leeks

And my most recent find:

Canned humans? 

One thing I didn’t take a photo of because the container was nondescript, with just a store bar code, was some pepperoni pesto made in-house at Whole Foods. The label caught my eye about the same time as the giant leeks in that same store in Providence, Rhode Island.  So no photo, but I did a make a mental note because pepperoni pesto is genius! I have no idea what was in the plastic vessel at Whole Foods but I made my own, using the tomatoes I sun-dried personally last summer. It is divine. And you need some. Just, please, don’t serve it in a salad bowel.

Ingredients (Makes about 1 3/4 cups or 415ml of pesto)
1/2 cup or 30g sun-dried tomatoes
1/4 cup or 45g pine nuts
2 large cloves garlic (about 10g)
3 1/2 oz or 100g spicy pepperoni
1/2 cup or 120ml olive oil, divided
Couple of good handfuls or 50g arugula or rocket
Sea salt to taste
1-2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Cover the sun-dried tomatoes with almost boiling water and leave to soften until cool. Drain the water from your tomatoes.

Aren't they a gorgeous color? I sun-dried them myself last summer.

Toast your pine nuts in a small skillet until they are lightly golden.

Blend the softened tomatoes, toasted pine nuts, garlic, pepperoni and a 1/4 cup or 60ml of olive oil in a food processor until you have a smooth paste.

Add in the arugula or rocket and the second 1/4 cup or 60ml olive oil and process again until you have a smooth paste.

Taste the pesto and add salt and lemon juice as needed.  I put about 1/4 teaspoon flakey sea salt and two teaspoon fresh lemon juice. Whir one last time to combine.

This makes a fabulous pasta sauce, pizza sauce or serve with crusty bread to dip.


What’s the funniest/strangest thing you have seen out in public? Leave me a photo in the comments! Let's keep it clean, people!

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Spicy Onion Paratha #TwelveLoaves

The name paratha comes from two words in Hindi and Urdu, parat meaning layer or flake and atta, which is flour, but not all paratha are multi-layered; some are simple flatbreads. All are cooked on a tawa or griddle. (P.S. It's pronounced prata. Just two syllables with the stress on the first.)

When we lived in Malaysia all those years, I volunteered in a monthly Booster Club fundraiser called PAC Shack. PAC stood for Panther Activity Center and once upon a time, it was actually a shack out in the field where moms and dads and even students served burgers with all the fixings and other goodies to raise funds for team uniforms and sports equipment. By the time I joined the Booster Club roster of volunteers, we had a kitchen up in the main high school building with little ventilation, sad extractor fans and cardboard spread on the floor to stop us sliding around on the inevitable grease that accumulated from cooking fatty meat patties on the big diner-type flat grills.  By the time I had left KL, we had moved into bigger better facilities, with room to work and a kitchen sink with actual hot running water. But the one thing we never could get around were the tears when it was time to peel and slice onions in an enclosed space, no matter how well ventilated. The onions were always my job because I was the only one who didn’t bawl. I’d take my 10-15 pounds out to a picnic table overlooking the school pool and get after it all by my lonesome, creating mountains of sliced onions to adorn the more than 600 burgers the other ladies were inside grilling and wrapping and popping in huge warmers before the lunch bell rang.

The moral of this story is, always get someone who wears contact lenses to slice your onions.  Those were my shields of eye protection! I found out the hard way that without them, I do cry.

This month my Twelve Loaves group decided on onions as our theme and I was delighted! I've been making paratha and chapati and naan for years so they seemed like the perfect oniony departure from the normal yeast bread I usually undertake for these challenges. I found a recipe online for an onion paratha that sounded fabulous. And indeed it is. I've added garlic and a bit more coriander, quantified for clarity and changed the method up in a quite a few ways that I hope will encourage someone to give it a try.

1 cup or 150g wholemeal wheat flour, plus extra for dusting as you roll the flatbread out
1 medium onion (about 6 1/3 oz or 180g)
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 small hot chilies
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon ground coriander
Small bunch (about 3/4 oz or 20g) cilantro or coriander leaves
1 tablepoon olive oil, plus extra for sautéing the vegetables and greasing the griddle
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Mince your onion, garlic and chilies as finely as you can. Do the same with your cilantro. I cut off the long, hard stems but minced the tender parts with the leaves.

In a medium-sized saucepan, drizzle in a little oil and add your cumin seeds.

Watch closely so they don’t burn but let them toast till they are a little darker and then add in your minced onion, garlic and chilies and stir well. If the pan is too dry, drizzle in a little more oil.

Cook the mixture over a low to medium heat, stirring often. You want everything to brown but not to scorch. When the mixture is nicely browned, add in the chopped cilantro, along with the ground coriander and the garam masala. Stir well and remove from the heat and allow to cool.

In a large mixing bowl, or the bowl of your stand mixer, combine the flour, onion mixture, 1 tablespoon olive oil and the salt.

Add in 1/4 cup or 60ml warm water and mix thoroughly.

Now add more warm water, a tablespoon at a time, mixing well in between additions. Different flours require more or less water but you are looking for a nice cohesive soft dough. I ended up adding three tablespoons to get the right consistency.

Knead the dough by hand or machine for a few minutes.  Form it into a nice round ball.

Drizzle a little oil in a bowl and roll the ball around to grease it. Cover the bowl with cling film and set aside to rest for 20-30 minutes. I find that the longer I let the dough rest, the easier it is to roll into circles once it’s divided, so I make it earlier in the afternoon and let it rest until just before I am ready to serve dinner.

When you are ready to cook the paratha, divide the ball into six equal pieces.

First cut it in half, then each half into three pieces.

Sprinkle your clean work surface with some flour and use a rolling pin to roll each ball into a circle. Sprinkle on extra flour as necessary to keep the dough from sticking.

The hand is for scale. Each circle is about 8 inches or 20cm across.

Heat your griddle pan and drizzle on a little oil. Place the circle on the hot pan and watch it carefully. Brush the top with some more oil.

When little bubbles start to form on the top flip the paratha over to cook the other side.

Press down with your spatula to make sure that the paratha is making contact with the griddle. Cook for a few minutes, flipping a couple more times if necessary, until both sides have lovely brown spots all over.

I like to stack the paratha in a little sleeve made of folded aluminum foil to keep warm until I am ready to serve.

These are great with any kind of curry, like potato, chicken, fish or just dal but I must confess to warming one the next morning and nibbling on it while I sipped my cup of coffee. Divine.


Are you a fan of all things bread and all things allium, by which I mean the onion family?  Then you are going to love this month’s Twelve Loaves recipes.

If you would like to join us this month, it’s easy:

1. Bake a bread using anything from the onion family and post it on your blog before the end of May 2014. This must be a new post. Your bread of choice recipe can include onions, scallions, garlic, shallots, in fact, anything allium-related but it must be IN the dough. In addition to being in the dough, it could also be added to a glaze. Whatever you bake, (yeasted, quick bread, crackers, muffins, braids, flatbreads, etc.) have fun!
2. Mention the Twelve Loaves challenge in your post. This helps us to get more members as well as share everyone's posts.
3. Add your link to the linky tool at the bottom of this post.

#TwelveLoaves is a monthly bread baking party created by Lora from Cake Duchess.  #TwelveLoaves runs so smoothly thanks to the help of Renee from Magnolia Days and Heather from girlichef.

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