Cucumber and Avocado Bisque

Cucumber and Avocado Bisque

IMG_3394.jpg

This is the perfect creamy, cold soup to serve on a hot day. Super simple to make with just a few ingredients. My husband hates cucumbers and he loved this. I topped with blue cheese and a drizzle of lemon balsamic vinegar. This came from a cookbook I just finished, “Big East Forkful” with recipes from Jim Leeson’s kitchen. This recipe may have originally come from Maude’s Courtyard – a favorite Nashville restaurant when I first arrived here in 1981. The original recipe calls for European seedless cucumbers but I used seedless Persian cucumbers and it tasted perfect.  I tweaked the recipe to my own tastes- added more avocado and I did not salt and leave the cucumbers sit.. The KEY is seedless cucumbers. I have included the original recipe card. This is a great cookbook filled with simple, country recipes.

Big East forkful blog.jpg

cucumber avocado Bisque.jpg

IMG_3391.jpg

IMG_3393.jpg

IMG_3396.jpg

Ingredients

1 Medium seedless European (or Persian) cucumber, chopped
1 Medium ripe avocado, chopped
3 green onions, chopped
1 Cup Chicken stock
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Cup sour cream (or greek yogurt)
1/2 tsp Salt

Blend all ingredients and chill. Serve garnished with blue cheese and drizzle with lemon balsamic vinegar.

Advertisements
Spaghetti Squash Rosti

Spaghetti Squash Rosti

This is a great side dish. Quick and easy for a weeknight dinner. Just a couple of ingredients. Top with an egg for a main dish. make individual patties or one big patty.

IMG_2867.jpg

IMG_2868.jpg

IMG_2869.jpg

IMG_0478.jpg

IMG_2872.jpg

Ingredients

  • 1 spaghetti squash 2 cups spaghetti squash noodles
  • 2 tbsp flour or (almond flour)
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400.
  2. Cut the spaghetti squash in half and using a spoon remove the seeds from the center. Place each half face down in a pyrex dish with about an inch of water in the bottom. Bake in the oven for 35-45 minutes or until a fork easily pierces through the squash. Place the spaghetti squash on a plate and allow to cool
  3. Using a fork, scrape the inside of the baked spaghetti squash, removing the flesh in strands. Place in a sieve and firmly press down to remove as much liquid as possible.
  4. in a bowl combine the spaghetti squash with the almond flour, cheese, dijon mustard and cayenne pepper. Mix to ensure the spices are blended in and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  5. Form the mixture into small patties approximately the size of a clenched fist and flatten until they are 1/2 inch thick. Place the patties on a plate and leave to rest in the fridge for approximately 30 minutes so they will hold together better when cooking. You can also make one large patty and cut into wedges.
  6. Heat the oil in a frying pan on high heat. Quickly cook the patties on one side for approximately 3-4 minutes until golden and then gently flip over. Lower the heat to medium and cook the patties for another 4-5 minutes.
  7. Serve warm topped.
Creamy Artichoke Soup

Creamy Artichoke Soup

This taste-of-spring soup is made creamy with silken tofu instead of  heavy cream—I adapted this from a cooking light recipe. It was a bit bland so I added some lemon balsamic vinegar since I did not have any lemon juice on hand. I also want to try this with greek yogurt replacing the tofu.

IMG_2794.jpg

IMG_2792.jpg

IMG_2789.jpg

IMG_2796.jpg

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup chopped shallots
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 cups unsalted chicken stock
  • 1 (12-oz.) pkg. frozen artichoke hearts
  • 1 (16-oz.) pkg. silken tofu, drained
  • 1 cup frozen sweet peas
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of lemon Juice or balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large saucepan over medium-high. Add shallots and garlic to pan; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Add stock and artichokes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and simmer until artichokes are very tender, about 5 minutes.

Place artichoke mixture, tofu, and peas in a blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure lid on blender, and place a clean towel over opening in lid. Process until smooth, about 45 seconds. Return mixture to saucepan; stir in milk lemon and salt, and pepper. Heat over medium until warmed through.

Vegetarian Tacos

Vegetarian Tacos

My husband and I are not vegetarian but we do experiment with lots of vegetarian recipes. I have found a new (to me) meatless product made by Quorn. We have tried several of their products and love all of them. Some are Vegan, Gluten free, soy free all vegetarian and made with mushrooms. The packaging can be recycled. I made this dish with the “Chic n Tenders”. We loved them. This is not really a recipe as it is more of a suggestion for a quick and easy weeknight dinner that is healthy. You can use just about any fillings with this product.

IMG_2718.jpg

IMG_2719.jpg

IMG_2720.jpg

IMG_2717.jpg

Ingredients

1 bag Chick’ n Tenders
1 red pepper,  seeded and sliced
1 large onion, sliced
shredded lettuce
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon chile powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
shredded cheese (I only had sliced and it also worked great)
sliced avocado
warmed corn or flour tortillas

Directions

Heat the oil and add the onions and saute when golden brown. Add red pepper and cook until soft. Add Chic’ n Tenders and stir fry until heated through. Add spices. Serve with toppings and warmed tortillas.

Cauliflower Korma with Toasted Almonds & Blackened Raisins 


Cauliflower Korma with Toasted Almonds & Blackened Raisins 


This was adapted from a recipe by Meera Sodha, author of Fresh India. This serves 4-6 but the recipe can be easily halved for 2 people. I made a few adjustments – I am adding this to my regular rotation of meals I love!

IMG_2657.jpg
 IMG_2650.jpg
Creamy Broccoli Soup

Creamy Broccoli Soup

I am on a soup roll, obviously. My husband likes his vegetables disguised and this did a great job. Broccoli is not his favorite but he loved this. I used an immersion blender but it is smoother if you use a food processor. Just depends on what texture you want. The cheese is optional.

IMG_2286.jpg

IMG_2277.jpg
IMG_2278.jpg
IMG_2285.jpg

Ingredients

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh or dried thyme and parsley
8 cups chopped broccoli (stems and florets)
4 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
½ cup whole or fat free milk (optional)
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
½ teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions

Heat butter and oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat until the butter melts. Add onion and celery; cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 4 to 6 minutes. Add carrot and herbs; cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 10 seconds.

Stir in broccoli. Add broth; bring to a low boil over high heat. Reduce heat to maintain a lively simmer and cook until very tender, about 15 minutes.

Puree the soup in batches in a blender until smooth. Stir in milk or half-and-half (if using), cheese (if using) and salt and pepper.

Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Creamy Cauliflower Soup

Creamy Cauliflower Soup

This is a wonderful, fairly guilt free soup with tons of flavor that gets the creamy taste by using an immersion blender or food processor. I have made this with and without the cheese and either way is great. This makes about 4 servings.

IMG_2149.jpg

IMG_2152.jpg

IMG_2145.jpg

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp unbleached or all purpose flour
  • 1 medium head cauliflower – chopped
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 shallot (optional)
  • 1/2 to 1 cup white sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (optional)
  • 4 cups fat free chicken broth (vegetarians can use vegetable broth)
  • salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a medium saucepan, make a roux by melting the butter on low heat.
  2. Add the flour and stir about 2 minutes.
  3. Add the chicken broth, onions and cauliflower and set heat to medium.
  4. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer over medium-low heat until vegetables are tender (about 20 minutes.)
  5. Puree with an immersion blender until smooth. Add cheese if using. Season with salt and pepper.