February 2008    
<< Home    Volume 07 Issue 02

Featured Recipes


Rainbow Skillet Hash
Quinoa is one of my favorite grains; it cooks quickly and is very nutritious.  This dish is easy to prepare and uses items that are likely to be in your refrigerator and pantry.


Preparation Time:  15 minutes
Cooking Time:  30 minutes
Servings:  4


2 cups water
1 cup quinoa, rinsed
½ cup vegetable broth
1 onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 ½ cups coarsely chopped potatoes
1 cup frozen corn kernels
1 cup frozen peas
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon basil
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
several twists freshly ground white pepper
2 tablespoons peanut butter


Place the water in a medium pot and bring to a boil.  Add the quinoa, reduce heat, cover and cook until quinoa is tender and all water has been absorbed, about 15 minutes.


Meanwhile, place about 2 tablespoons of the broth in a large non-stick skillet.  Add the onions, celery, carrots and bell pepper.  Cook, stirring occasionally for about 3 minutes, then add the remaining broth and the potatoes.   Continue to cook, stirring occasionally for about 15 minutes, adding a bit more broth if the pan gets too dry.  Add the corn, peas and the seasonings, except for the peanut butter.  Cook, stirring occasionally for about 10 minutes, stir in the peanut butter and cook until mixture is creamy, about 2 minutes.  Stir in the cooked quinoa and mix well.  Serve at once, either plain or with some Sriracha hot sauce over the top.


Hints:  This may also be made with other cooked grains, such as brown rice or millet. 


Guacamole Bean Tacos
These tacos are a richer treat because of the avocado, but they are quick to put together and very tasty.  This filling also makes a great sandwich spread.


1 avocado, peeled and chopped
1  15 ounce can garbanzos, drained and rinsed
1 tomato, chopped
4 green onions, chopped
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon chopped green chilies
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 clove garlic, crushed
soft corn tortillas
chopped lettuce
fresh salsa
tofu sour cream (optional)


Place the avocado in a bowl and mash slightly with a fork.  Add the beans, tomato, green onions, cilantro, lime juice and garlic.  Mix well.  To serve, place some of the avocado-bean mixture in each tortilla, top with lettuce, salsa, and tofu sour cream, if desired.


Hint:  Recipe for tofu sour cream can be found in the June 2002 newsletter.  These may also be made with other kinds of canned beans, such as pinto, black or white beans.


Couscous and Greens
I have had Swiss Chard growing in my garden since last summer and it is still going strong.  This is a simple, yet delicious way to get some leafy greens into your meal plan.


We like this over whole wheat couscous, but it would also be delicious served over brown rice or quinoa.


Preparation Time:  10 minutes
Cooking Time:  10 minutes
Servings:  4


1  10 ounce box whole wheat couscous
3 cups boiling water
½ cup pine nuts
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons vegetable broth
1  15 ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup raisins
6 cups packed coarsely chopped Swiss Chard
1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
several twists freshly ground black pepper

Place the couscous in a large bowl and pour the boiling water over it.  Cover tightly and let rest for 10 minutes.


Meanwhile, place the pine nuts in a dry non-stick frying pan .  Toast over low heat, stirring almost constantly, until nuts are golden brown, about 3-4 minutes.  Remove from pan and set aside.  Return pan to stove, add onion, garlic and vegetable broth.  Cook, stirring frequently until vegetables soften slightly, about 2 minutes, then add the remaining ingredients.  Continue to cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until chard is tender, about 5 minutes.  If pan seems too dry during this final cooking, add a few sprinkles of water to soften the chard.  Remove from heat and stir in the pine nuts.


Fluff the couscous with a fork and place on individual plates.  Top with greens and serve.

Hints:  Other leafy greens, such as kale, could be used in place of the chard.  Be sure to remove the tough center stem before chopping.


Curried Quinoa Chowder
This recipe is a variation on the Quinoa Chowder in an earlier newsletter.  I really like curried dishes, and I love quinoa, so it just naturally seemed like a good fit.


Preparation Time:  15 minutes
Cooking Time:  1 hour
Servings:  6-8

1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 carrot. sliced
6 cups vegetable broth
2 cups sliced fingerling potatoes
1  14 ounce can fire-roasted chopped tomatoes
1  15 ounce can red beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup rinsed quinoa
2 teaspoons curry powder
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds, crushed
2 cups chopped spinach


Place about 2 tablespoons of the broth in a large non-stick soup pot.  Add the onion, garlic and carrots.  Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes, until vegetables have softened slightly.  Add the remaining broth, the potatoes, tomatoes, beans, quinoa and seasonings.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for about 50 minutes.  Add the spinach and cook an additional 5 minutes.  


Falafel Patties
By Heather McDougall

These may be made ahead of time and then refrigerated or frozen until needed.  We like these much better than the packaged ones!


Preparation Time:  20 minutes
Cooking Time:  20-25 minutes, in batches
Servings:  variable, makes about 12  3 inch patties

2  15 ounce cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup onion, chopped
1  8 ounce tub hummus (optional)
2 tablespoons flour


Place all ingredients in a food processor and process until well mixed.  Place in a bowl.  Drop by large spoonfuls into a non-stick griddle and flatten slightly with fingertips.  Bake about 10-12 minutes on each side, turning several times, until golden brown.  Remove to a platter to cool.  They will firm up as they cool. 


Hints:  Be sure to look for hummus that does not have any added oil.  If possible, look for hummus without added tahini to reduce the fat content even further.  These may also be made without the hummus and they will still be delicious.  Heather usually makes these about 2-3 inches across, sort of like a small burger.  Use these in the recipe for Falafel Wraps in the June 2007 newsletter.


Sumptuous Soups
By Meredith McCarty DC, NE


During the February 2008 Advanced Study Weekend, Meredith prepared a variety of delicious recipes for the participants to taste and enjoy.  Here are two of her mouth-watering soups!

Carrot Cream Soup with Basil-Mint Swirl

Makes 3 to 4 servings or 4 cups


Potato adds to the smooth, light texture of this multi-season soup that satisfies withoutthe ubiquitous can of chicken broth, the dairy products usually included in creamed vegetable soups—butter, half and half or cream—or a roux (flour and butter sauce).


2 large cloves garlic, sliced
2 ribs celery, sliced
1 pound carrots, 4 or 5 carrots or 3 1/2 cups, sliced
1 potato, sweet potato or yam, 1/2 pound, peeled and sliced
1 red bell pepper, halved, seeded and sliced (optional, in season)
2 cups water
3-inch piece kombu sea vegetable
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1 cup soymilk (optional)


Basil-Mint Swirl
Makes 1 to 1 1/4 cups


You can make this sauce a couple of days ahead. Color, flavor and consistency are maintained with refrigeration. A smaller volume is difficult to blend in a food processor.


4 ounces basil (two 2-ounce bunches), 3 cups, leaves only
12 large sprigs mint, 2 ounces or 1 1/2 cups, leaves only
2 large cloves garlic
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon water (optional)
Mint sprigs for garnish


1. Place vegetables in a pressure cooker or pot with water, kombu, salt and pepper. Bring to pressure or boil and cook until tender, 5 minutes in pressure cooker, 10 to 15 minutes in pot. Remove kombu.


2. Purée ingredients until smooth. Add soymilk only if more liquid is needed. Return to pot to heat through.


3. To make Basil-Mint Swirl, process all ingredients except water until fine. Add water only if needed to make smooth.


4. To serve, place a heaping teaspoon of topping on top center of soup. With a chopstick or spoon handle, swirl herb paste in a spiral pattern out from the center. Garnish with a sprig of mint. (Basil darkens when placed on hot soup.)


Note: For larger amounts, such as 3 times this recipe, multiply all ingredients by 3 except water and soymilk. Reduce water to 4 cups instead of 6 cups. Add soymilk gradually to texture desired, about 2 cups instead of 3 cups.


Curried Cream of Carrot Soup:
 Add 2 teaspoons curry powder, 1 teaspoon cumin and a pinch of cayenne. Top center of swirl with a dollop of tofu sour cream and a sprig of mint.


Heirloom Bean and Vegetable Soup
Makes 6 to 8 servings or 8 cups


Heirloom beans are native, non-hybridized beans with names like Anasazi, Scarlet Runner, Red Calypso, Steuben Yellow Eyes, Rattlesnake, Christmas or Chestnut Limas, Gigandes, and Swedish Brown Beans. Anasazi beans, also called Painted Desert Beans, have been cultivated in America since 1100 A.D. The name means "ancient ones" or "predecessor" in the Navajo language. They have a pinto-like flavor. Find heirloom beans in specialty food stores and some natural food stores.


1 cup heirloom beans (Anasazi, etc.)
5 1/2 cups or more water (2 cups to soak, 2 1/2 cups or more to cook)
1 bay leaf
3-inch piece kombu sea vegetable
1 onion, diced, or leek white, cut in 1/4-inch half moons
4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed 
1 carrot, cut in 1/4-inch half moons
1 rib celery, sliced
1 red potato, cut in 1/2-inch dice (or parsnip, rutabaga or turnip) 
2 cups winter squash (10 ounces kabocha), peeled and cut in 1/2-inch dice
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 tomato, chopped
up to 1/2 cup fresh herbs, (1/2 cup or 3/4 ounce fresh basil with 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary), chopped freshly-ground pepper
1/4 cup white miso or part light barley miso 
half a bunch arugula or parsley, chopped, or cooked hardy greens such as kale


1. Sort through beans by spreading them on a white plate in batches. Rinse, drain and soak 8 hours. (Or, if you are especially sensitive to the gas in beans, repeat this process: drain beans and soak in fresh water for another 8 hours, or until bubbles form, around 24 hours.) Drain beans.


2. Bring beans and fresh water to boil in pressure cooker or in a 2-quart pot. Turn heat low to simmer uncovered for 5 minutes, then add bay leaf and sea vegetable. Cover and cook by either method, 20 to 60 minutes in pressure cooker (less with Anasazi beans, more with garbanzo beans/chickpeas), or 45 minutes (for Anasazi beans) to 3 hours in a pot adding more water as necessary. Vigorously whisk kombu to dissolve it in the hot bean broth. Makes 2 1/2 cups Anasazi beans.


3. In a 3-quart pot, place vegetables, salt, and water to barely cover, about 3 cups. Bring to boil then turn heat to medium to cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Add tomato, herbs and pepper with beans and some of their broth. Cook a couple of minutes more. Dissolve miso in a little of the hot soup broth and add to pot. Stir in greens and serve.


©2008 John D. McDougall All Rights Reserved