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Monday, July 4, 2011

Recipe Review from 6/27/11

Happy Fourth of July! 

This week I can only recap from a couple of recipes from last week.  The first one I made a second time, doing it "my way" rather than the directed way, and the second one I had to type in.  Both are winners!  Later this week I also plan on posting a garden and hound update. 

In the mean time, enjoy!  

Pad Thai (Fine Cooking, May 2011 - modified)
As I noted before, I really liked the flavors and simplicity of this dish, but I didn't care for how mushy the noodles turned out, the tofu 'strips' just crumbled, and since I don't have a wok I was using my cast iron pan and the order in which I was to prep things was problematic.

So, I had enough ingredients left to make this way.  Result - outstanding!  Seriously good.  I could eat this every week. 

1) Combine 1/4 cup each of fish sauce, agave nectar, and lime juice.  1/3 cup of each was too much.

2) Use only 2/3 cup broth.

3) Soak noodles in warm water no more than 10 minutes.  Drain well.

4) After the tofu was pressed, drained and blotted dry, I cubed it rather than cut into strips.  Heat cast-iron pan over med-high heat, no oil.  Fry tofu until nicely browned on the outside and set aside.

5) Add oil to hot pan.  Cook shrimp, then add garlic and continue cooking until shrimp is almost done.  Remove and add to tofu.

6) Add thin layer of oil to pan.  Heat.  Add eggs and lightly scramble. Remove and add to tofu and shrimp.

7) Add oil to pan.  Add drained noodles and sear for about 2 minutes, turning frequently to lightly brown.  Add fish sauce and broth and cook until liquid is absorbed.  Add back in tofu, shrimp and egg.  Toss lightly.


Waldorf Blue Cheese Cascadian Couscous Salad  (Vegetarian Times, July/August 2011)
This caught my eye for it's simplicity.  I did think there was some incongruity between the description of the recipe creator and the ingredient list - not sure about the whole "fresh produce" bit when the only produce is granny smith apples and celery.  Still, this was quick to pull together and tasted really good.  I would like to experiment with wheat berries - the dressing and blue cheese would lend themselves well to the nutty taste of wheat berries. 

Mary Berry, of White Salmon, Wash, created this colorful Waldorf salad after being inspired by the abundant fresh produce and other ingredients at her local farmers market.

1 cup couscous (I used Israeli)
1/4 cup toasted hazelnut oil (I used olive oil)
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp honey Dijon mustard (I used regular Dijon)
1 tsp honey
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup diced granny smith apples, peeled and cored (I used Fuji, just cored and diced)
1/3 cup chopped celery
1/3 cup dried tart cherries or cranberries
1/4 cup chopped toasted hazelnuts (I used walnuts)
3 tbsp crumbled blue cheese

1) cook couscous according to directions on package.  Fluff with fork and transfer to a large bowl to cool.

2) Whisk together oil, vinegar, mustard, honey, salt and pepper in a small bowl.

3) Stir apples, celery, cherries, nuts, and dressing into couscous. Top with blue cheese.

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