Tag Archives: parmesan

Warm Kale, White Bean, and Anchovy Salad

11 Jan

warm kale, white bean, and anchovy salad

It’s weird what foods you miss being away from home. I knew that I’d miss peanut butter and good quality dark chocolate, both difficult to find around here (or expensive once you do find them). But I’d never guessed that I’d start craving kale. It was nowhere to be found in Buenos Aires, and I’ve been really hoping to make a raw kale salad. When I came across some at an organic store here in Montevideo, I was really excited – I know, I know, this is kale we’re talking about, but there’s nothing like satisfying a craving! Sadly, it was too tough to eat raw. So instead I decided to cook it minimally with some white beans and a whole lot of garlic and anchovies. With the addition of almonds, raisins, parmesan, and pickled roasted peppers, this warm salad more than satisfied my craving for chewy, hearty kale. The anchovy flavor is reminiscent of a good Caesar salad, but the kale and white beans make this a lot healthier.

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Broccoli and White Bean Soup

26 Oct

broccoli and white bean soup

When I picked up a head of broccoli recently, I was surprised to find it came with a huge quantity of thick, hearty-looking leaves surrounding it. I guess I’d gotten used to supermarket broccoli with these leaves trimmed and (I assume) discarded. After some quick searching, I found that, as I’d hoped, they were edible – and, on top of that, supposedly quite healthy and tasty! So when I set out to make this broccoli and white bean soup, I figured it made sense to toss the leaves in as well. They were an amazing addition to this delicious soup, and for those of you not quite so lucky with your groceries, you can substitute with another hearty green, like collards or swiss chard. I’m sure this soup would be great pureed, as in the original recipe, but it was great with everything left intact and still had a nearly creamy mouthfeel to it from the broccoli and beans simmered until beginning to fall apart.

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Crustless Mushroom and Greens Quiche

15 Oct

crustless mushroom and greens quiche

As I mentioned Friday, the knob to control the oven temperature here isn’t labeled with actual temperatures or even gas marks. So I wanted to try cooking something fairly forgiving to test out the oven. I thought a simple crustless quiche would be a great option – easy, tasty, and healthy. I didn’t have anything to bake it in, but then I realized that the oven-safe sautee pan that we’d brought along (yes, I didn’t just bring a whole lot of spices for my kitchen) was perfect for the task. I like my quiches to be absolutely packed with vegetables, so I put as many mushrooms and greens as I could in here, as well as some chopped walnuts on top for a nice crunch. I also had some leftover black garlic which I tossed in as well – but, of course, this quiche will still be quite tasty without it. It cooked up perfectly fine on medium-high heat in my oven (with some adjustment as it cooked as I tried to guess at what would be closest to the 425 degrees called for in the recipe), and it’s hearty and filling, great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

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Mushroom and Black Garlic Pasta

8 Oct

mushroom and black garlic pasta

While there are some ingredients I’ve had difficulty finding here in Buenos Aires (like canned beans), there are others that I’ve been surprised to see in abundance. Black garlic, which I’ve never once seen on a grocery store shelf back in DC, is mysteriously present in multiple stores here. The vendor at the vegetable stall I bought it from warned me that it was not intended for cooking but rather meant to be eaten medicinally, but I’d heard of black garlic before and knew better. If you taste a clove plain, it’s hard to believe this is garlic at all – the fermented ebony-colored cloves are sticky-sweet, with flavor reminiscent of a balsamic reduction or tamarind paste, but there’s still a hint of mellow garlic flavor in the background. Definitely worth grabbing if you happen to see some around. I wanted to cook something simple but special with this, so I picked up some fresh pasta from the grocery store (another ingredient that can be easily found here in abundance – and is often cheaper than the dried stuff too!) – spinach pasta, hence the green hue in the photos – and combined the two with the earthy flavor of mushrooms and thyme (and some fresh garlic too, of course). The unique taste of black garlic permeates the dish, well-complemented by the other ingredients.

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Spinach and Three Cheese Empanadas

25 Sep

spinach and three cheese empanadas

Everyone talks about how popular carne (meat) is over here in Argentina, but no one prepared me for how much the Argentines love their queso (cheese). While the variety isn’t quite the same as back home, there are still plenty of cheeses in the supermarket, and ham and cheese sandwiches are everywhere. And it seems like any empanada that doesn’t have meat in it has cheese instead. These spinach and three cheese empanadas are heavy on the cheese, but maybe the spinach in there can help you feel a little healthier about making these. But the taste should really be justification enough. You may have leftover filling – and that’s perfectly okay because it also makes a delicious dip. I’ve only been here a short while, but, as a longtime cheese lover, I think I’m going to like it here.

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Shaved Squash Salad

23 Jul

shaved squash salad

Yet another simple summer recipe – only a few ingredients, but it still feels exciting. This was my first time eating raw squash, and I was pleasantly surprised by the taste, crisp and nutty. Combined with a tart lemon dressing, salty cheese, and the crunch of pistachios, the resulting salad is amazingly flavorful. But it’s still light enough to leave you feeling good afterwards. Great for a quick lunch or to bring along on a picnic.

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Raw Kale Salad

16 Jul

raw kale salad

In the recent summer heat that has quickly descended over DC, I’ve been finding it increasingly difficult to convince myself to turn on the stove or oven. The prospect of leaving the house to scrounge up a meal is equally unpleasant. So I’ve been eating a lot of simple food – fresh fruit and vegetables, mostly, that require little to no cooking. This raw kale salad has been a great standby, and after having heard so many others rave about raw kale, I finally understand why. The kale has a pleasantly chewy texture here and is packed with nutrients. Add chickpeas, mixed nuts, and avocados, and you have a salad that not only is amazingly flavorful, but also will make you feel truly good after eating it. This recipe is perfect for adaptation. Use your favorite nut variety instead of mixed nuts, add a little dried fruit, use different beans or a different cheese – it’s really hard to go wrong!

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Pea and Prosciutto Salad

15 Feb

pea and prosciutto salad

So I have this problem. If I get hungry and don’t rush to fill my stomach, I start to get grumpy. Very grumpy. Woe be unto those in the near vicinity grumpy. Unfortunately, I also often work late, and with my tendency to make cooking dinner a multiple hour affair, this means that I have far more grumpy evenings than I would like. Since I can only snack on mixed nuts (my usual remedy) for so long, one night I found myself tossing together this quick pea and prosciutto salad to get myself through cooking dinner. The combination of the peas’ crisp fresh flavor with the richness of the prosciutto turned out so delicious that I knew immediately I’d be making it again. I could see this dish being an extraordinary side to roast chicken or steak. Next time I make it, I’m thinking of drizzling some balsamic into the pan when adding the peas and prosciutto for an extra bit of tang.

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Sausage and Lentil Stew

6 Feb

sausage and lentil stew

We’ve had a surprisingly mild winter in DC this year. Not that I’m complaining – I much prefer warmer weather. But now we’re gearing up for a cold February, and I’m trying to take solace in soups and stews. This hearty stew combines sausage, lentils, and cabbage for something that keeps me warm and full. In this recipe, I rely mostly on the sausage providing the spicing for the stew, but if you’re using less flavorful sausage, feel free to toss in some extra spices (add them at the same time as the minced garlic). You can take this stew in a lot of different directions, and I think cajun spice mix, chili powder, or herbs de provence would all work well.

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Pumpkin Risotto

28 Nov

pumpkin risotto

We’re approaching the end of pumpkin season, so I’ve been posting my very best pumpkin recipes last week and this week. Luckily, pumpkins keep well for a couple months (and my pumpkin puree will keep good for 6 months or more when frozen) which means after you buy up those last pumpkins, you’ll have ample time to cook these delicious recipes!

I can see why pumpkin (and butternut squash) risotto shows up on a lot of menus around this time of year. This restaurant darling is fairly simple to make and packed with flavor, and the risotto easily takes on a beautiful orange color from the pumpkin puree. In this rendition, fresh ginger plays a subtle background note to the rich pumpkin flavor. This dish makes for a filling vegetarian main course or a great side along a cut of steak.

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