The McDougall Newsletter

August 2008

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Vol. 7, No. 08

Featured Recipes

Here are some additional delicious recipes from the June 2008 Celebrity Chef weekend.

Gazpacho Verde
By Eric Tucker

This chilled soup is bright in flavor and refreshing. An under-ripe green tomato or tomatillo adds pungency, while ripe green zebra or an Aunt Ruby’s German Green will add sweetness.

4 stalks of scallion, rough chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium English cucumber, seeded, rough chopped
1 green zucchini, rough chopped
1 cup rough chopped green tomato, or tomatillo
1/2 bunch parsley, rough chopped
2 teaspoons fresh oregano
1 cup packed spinach, kale, or chard
Fresh basil, cilantro, tarragon, herbs of choice
2 teaspoons white miso
Juice of 1/2 lime
2 cups water
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until fairly smooth. Do not over blend or you will heat up the mix and cook the chlorophyll, turning the soup brown. Chill the soup before serving. Serve each portion with 2 -3 tablespoons of the salsa

Gazpacho Verde Salsa

2 stalks scallion, sliced thin
1 jalapeno or Serrano chile, seeded and minced
1/2 medium English cucumber, seeded, 1/3 inch dice
1 small zucchini, 1/3 inch dice
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
Juice of 1 lime
2 tablespoons each cilantro and mint leaves
1 avocado, diced (optional)
Salt to taste

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl.

Mary’s Note: I have heard from several people who say this is now a staple on their summer menu. This is great for using fresh garden tomatoes, zucchini and cucumber.

Smoky Refried Bean Soup
By Susan Voisin

This soup is so thick it's almost a chili. Use the minimum amounts of chipotle chili powder and hot sauce to make this a mild dish or add more to make it as hot as you dare.

1 large onion, chopped
3 - 4 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1 14-ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
1 15-ounce can fat-free refried beans
1 15-ounce can black beans, drained
1 cup frozen corn kernels
1 teaspoon cumin
1 1/2 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
1/8 - 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder (to taste)
1 teaspoon hot sauce (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano (or 1 tsp. regular oregano)
salt and pepper, to taste

Heat a large, non-stick pot and sauté the onion until it begins to brown, adding a little water if necessary to prevent sticking. Add the garlic and bell pepper and cook for one more minute. Add all the remaining ingredients and cook until the flavors blend, 20-30 minutes.

Serving suggestion: Garnish with fresh tomato salsa and serve with baked tortilla chips and a large salad.

Mary’s Note: I have heard from quite a few people who make this on a regular basis because it is their favorite fast soup. I always have these ingredients available in my kitchen and this wonderful soup can be on the table in 45 minutes, start to finish.

Skillet Gardener's Pie
By Susan Voisin

I used kidney beans here because I like their flavor and texture in this dish. But feel free to substitute about 1- 1/2 cups of any cooked beans or lentils

2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes
1/2 cup plain soy milk
salt and pepper, to taste
1 large onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 large carrots, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
8 ounces mushrooms, diced
2 cups vegetable broth
16 ounces (1 can) kidney beans, drained
2 cups green beans, cut in 1" pieces (frozen cut green beans can be used)
1 1/2 teaspoons thyme
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, minced (or 1 tsp. dried)
1/4 teaspoon sage
2 cups baby spinach leaves, packed
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons water (or veg. broth)
extra fresh rosemary for garnish

Scrub the potatoes and cut them into cubes. (I leave mine unpeeled, but if you want you can peel them before dicing.) Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and simmer until potatoes are tender. Reserve a cup of their cooking water, if possible, and drain. Place in a large bowl, add the soymilk, and mash until smooth, adding a little of the potato-cooking water if they seem too dry. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste and set aside in a warm place.

While the potatoes are cooking, make the "pie" filling. Heat a large non-stick or cast iron skillet on a medium-high burner and add the onions. Sauté until onions are translucent, adding a little water if necessary to prevent sticking. Add the garlic, carrots, celery, and mushrooms, and sauté for 3 more minutes.

Add the vegetable broth, kidney beans, green beans, and herbs. Simmer on medium heat for 20 minutes until all vegetables are tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. There should still be some liquid in the pan, but if it has become too dry, add a little of the potato-cooking water. Add the spinach and stir until it's completely wilted.

Mix the cornstarch with the water until smooth, and add it to the pan. Cook, stirring, until mixture has thickened.

Spoon the potatoes evenly over the top of the filling and sprinkle with chopped rosemary. If potatoes have cooled, put the skillet under the broiler for a minute or two. Serve immediately while hot.

Mary’s Note: This is a fantastic “pie” that does not have to be baked in the oven, all it requires is some simmering on the stovetop.

Spicy Southwestern Tofu Burgers
By Colleen Patrick-Goudreau

This recipe was created to replicate a favorite store-bought tofu burger of mine, and I’m thrilled to have fulfilled my quest!

16 ounces extra firm tofu, frozen and thawed
2 tablespoons ground flax seeds
6 tablespoons water
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs or cracker meal
1 red pepper, diced
1 cup corn kernels (roasted corn kernels would be ideal)
1/4 cup fat-free refried beans
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Extra water for binding
Salt, to taste

Squeeze out all the water from the thawed tofu, and crumble it into a large bowl, using your hands. You can leave some larger chunks, but definitely crumble it enough so that it will bind with the other ingredients well.

Add the ground flax seeds and water to a small food processor bowl or blender, and blend until it becomes thick and viscous. Stop the machine at one point, and scrape down the sides to make sure all the ground seeds get combined with the water.(I usually blend it for 2 minutes.)

Add the flax seed mixture to the tofu, along with all the other ingredients, up until the extra water. Combine everything using a wooden spoon, and then your hands to feel the consistency. You want to make sure all the spices are thoroughly combined and that you can create patties from the mixture. Taste, and add salt, as necessary.

Add a tablespoon or two of water to help bind the patties, as needed.

Using your hands, form the mixture into patties. Bake under the broiler for 3 minutes each side or in a 375-degree oven for 10 minutes each side.

Mary’s Note: I am always looking for new burger recipes and this is a firm, smoky burger with delicious flavor. To freeze tofu, just put the unopened container of tofu (not silken) into the freezer and freeze for at least 24 hours. Thaw on the counter for several hours, or put the unopened package in a bowl of boiling water to speed thawing time.

White Miso Soup
By Kevin Dunn

Yield: Serves 1 person

8 ounces Dashi (see recipe below)
1 teaspoon sake
2 tablespoons white miso
1/2 strip Wakame, softened and chopped
3 cubes firm tofu
1 tablespoon scallions, cut on a bias

Heat the Dashi and the sake to a strong simmer in a saucepan (160 degrees).

Next whisk the white miso into the Dashi. Don't allow this to boil only simmer. Place the tofu and Wakame in a warm cup. Pour Dashi mixture over the tofu and Wakame. Garnish with scallions cut on a bias.

Dashi:
1 1/2 quarts water
1 piece kombu, 3X6-inch piece
1/2 cup cold water (reserve for third step)
2 cups smoked Dulse flakes

Simmer the Kombu in the 1 1/2 quarts of water. When you have attained a strong simmer, remove the pot from the stove and remove the Kombu(reserve the Kombu it may be used twice). Add the cold water and the smoked Dulse flakes. Allow the flakes to sit in the broth until it all sinks, approximately 15 minutes. Strain and reserve the Dulse, it can be used twice. This broth will keep in the refrigerator for at least a week.

Hint: If you can’t find the sea vegetables needed for this recipe in your local Asian markets, then try this website: http://www.seaveg.com/

Mary’s Note: Our Japanese cooking instructor says this is her new favorite Dashi. The smoked Dulse gives this a very rich flavor. Miso soup is best made 1 cup at a time for the freshest flavor.

Chai-Spiced Oat Crepes with Grilled Mangos or Nectarines and Citrus-Almond “Ricotta” Filling
By Bryanna Clark Grogan

A special occasion brunch dish that is actually very easy to make, and can be made ahead and quickly assembled and heated just before serving. If you don't have nectarines or mangoes, you can use fresh or frozen sliced peaches instead. Note: These crepes can be made without the Chai Spices and used as ordinary crepes.

Chai-Spiced Crepes (makes about 12)

2 1/4 cups nondairy milk
3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour (do not substitute ordinary whole wheat flour)
3/4 cup oat flour (2/3 cup rolled oats, ground in a dry blender or electric coffee/spice mill)
3/4 cup extra-firm silken tofu
1/3 cup chickpea flour (besan) or low-fat soy flour
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder

Chai Spice Mix:
1 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground anise
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2-3 pinches ground nutmeg
1 pinch turmeric

Citrus-Almond "Ricotta'" Filling (see recipe below)

Grilled Nectarines or Mangoes:
12 ripe nectarines OR 3-4 ripe mangoes
1/4 cup maple syrup or agave nectar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

To make the recipe, have ready:

Chai-Spiced Oat Crepes (these can be made several days ahead and refrigerated or frozen)

Citrus Almond "Ricotta" Filling (this can be made several days ahead and refrigerated)

Grilled Nectarines or Mangoes (make these just before putting the crepes together)

Garnish: Grated orange peel

To make the Crepes:
Process all of the ingredients in a food processor or a blender until very smooth. (You do not need to "rest" the batter before cooking, as you do with egg crepes.)

Heat a good nonstick 8" skillet (a shallow crepe skillet is the best, if you have one) over medium-high heat. Use 3-4 tablespoons of batter per crepe (stirring the batter before you make each crepe), rolling and tilting the pan until it evenly covers the bottom. Cover the pan and cook for a few seconds, or until the top looks dry. Carefully loosen the crepe with a very thin plastic spatula. Stack the cooked crepes on a plate and cover them with a clean napkin. (These crepes are quite tender and it is difficult to flip them over-- with this method of cooking, you don't have to.)

Either fill the crepes right away and serve as directed below, or let them cool and place in a plastic bag or rigid container (with pieces of waxed paper in between each crepe), and refrigerate for up to 3 days, or freeze them for future use (thaw thoroughly before filling).

Grilled Nectarines or Mangoes: (Make just before serving)
Thinly slice the nectarines or mangoes. Place the slices in a large shallow baking pan, nonstick, or lined with cooking parchment. Place under the oven’s broiler (3-4" from the heat source). Broil them, tossing now and then, until they are soft and slightly charred. Add maple syrup or agave nectar and lemon juice and mix lightly.

To assemble, heat, and serve the crepes:
Place 2 to 3 tablespoons of the filling down the center of each crepe and roll up. Place the filled crepes in one layer in shallow baking pans lined with cooking parchment. Cover the pans with foil and bake at 400 °F for 10-15 minutes, or just until hot and slightly puffy. Top each serving with the grilled nectarines or mangoes and sprinkle with the grated orange peel. Serve immediately.

Serves 12

Citrus-Almond “Ricotta” Filling
By Bryanna Clark Grogan

Almond "Ricotta":
1 cup hot water
1/2 cup whole blanched almonds
1 cup cold water
4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons cornstarch (if you're allergic to corn, you can use wheat starch, or use 6 T. white rice flour)
1 teaspoon maple syrup or agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon salt

Additions to add after chilling:
1/4 cup vegan sugar
2 tablespoons lime juice
grated zest of 1 large organic orange or blood orange
chopped peeled fruit of the orange or blood orange
grated zest of 1 organic large lemon

Place the hot water and almonds in the blender and blend until a very smooth "cream" results-- be patient. It cannot be grainy. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend again well.

Pour the mixture into a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan and stir constantly over medium-high heat until it thickens and comes to a boil. Turn the heat down to medium and cook 1 minute more, stirring.

MICROWAVE OPTION: Pour the mixture into a large microwave-safe bowl or beaker. Microwave 2 minutes on HIGH. Whisk. Microwave 1 to 2 minutes more, or until thickened.

Scrape the mixture into a container. Cover and chill. When it is chilled and firm, mash and stir it with a fork. Mix in the additions with a fork. Refrigerate until you fill the crepes.

Mary’s Note: Bryanna made these in my Berndes and Swiss Diamond non-stick frying pans for the Celebrity Chef weekend and she was so impressed with how well they loosened from the pans that when she returned home she ordered some of these pans for herself. These crepes were very tender and delicious. They would be very impressive to serve to guests!

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