recipes at random

Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime. Give him ramen noodles, and you don’t have to teach him anything. - Lawrence Downes

Saturday, September 30, 2006


Chole: Indian curried chickpeas

This is a rough approximation of a recipe my friend Ram taught me in grad school.


1 1/2 Tbsp canola oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1/2 inch piece fresh ginger, shredded
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp turmeric
1 Tbsp cumin
1 Tbsp ground coriander
1 12-oz. can chickpeas
1 12-oz. can whole tomatoes
salt to taste
1 tsp garam masala


Heat oil in heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, and ginger until onions are translucent. Add spices and stir with wooden spoon for about a minute. Drain and rinse chickpeas and add to pan, then return to simmer. Add tomatoes and smash them with the spoon. Return again to simmer. Over medium-low heat, let mixture simmer uncovered until somewhat thicker, about 15 min. Before serving, stir in garam masala.

Serve with basmati rice. Serves 4.

Friday, September 29, 2006


West African peanut soup


Cook Time: 1 Hour
Ready In: 1 Hour 20 Minutes
Yields: 10 servings

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium onions, very finely diced
2 large bell peppers, (any color) finely chopped
6 large cloves garlic, minced
1 (28 ounce) can chopped tomatoes with juice
8 cups vegetable broth
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup uncooked rice
1 (18 ounce) jar creamy peanut butter
chopped roasted peanuts (optional)

1. Heat olive oil in a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Cook onion, bell pepper, and garlic until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes with their juice, vegetable broth, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
2. Add rice to soup and stir. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 25 minutes, or until rice is tender.
3. When rice is cooked, whisk in peanut butter and return to a simmer, and serve. Garnish with chopped roasted peanuts, if desired.


Baked apples in caramel cream

Recipe By : Taste of Home Oct/Nov '96

If you can't find Rome Beauty apples, Macintosh, Cortland, Honey Crisp, or Jonathans would be equally good.

3 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 c hot water
4 lg Rome Beauty apples -- cored
1 tbsp lemon juice
12 caramels
1/2 c whipping cream

Combine brown sugar and water in an 8-in. square baking dish. Peel the
top half of each apple; brush with lemon juice. Place in the baking
dish. Fill each with three caramels. Bake at 350 for 60-65 minutes or
until apples are tender, basting every 20 minutes. Carefully lift
apples, allowing any caramel in centers to drip into pan, and place in
individual dessert dishes. Pour sauce into a small saucepan; add
cream. Cook and stir over medium-low heat until sauce is smooth and
thick. Spoon over apples; serve immediately.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


Watermelon, feta, and basil salad

Thank you, Martha Stewart, for this recipe. Now the rest of you, get yourself to a farmer's market before all the good watermelons are gone, and try this salad. It may stretch credulity, but I promise you won't be disappointed.

Serves 4; Prep time: 15 minutes; Total time: 15 minutes

3 1/2 pounds seedless watermelon (rind removed), cut into 1-inch cubes (6 cups)

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, cut into thin strips (see note, below)

Coarse salt and ground pepper

4 ounces feta cheese, broken into large pieces (about 1 cup)

1. In a large bowl, combine watermelon, lime juice, and half the basil; season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Divide among four plates; scatter cheese and remaining basil on top.

Per serving: 146 calories; 6.4 grams fat; 5.5 grams protein; 19.1 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber

Note: Cutting basil: Stack a few basil leaves (of similar size). Roll into a tight cylinder; with a sharp knife, slice crosswise into thin strips.


Plum dumplings

(Knedle sa Sljivama)

from the Washington Post

4 to 6 servings

This dessert recipe was passed on to author Joan McQueeney Mitric some 35 years ago by the cooks in her husband's village of Lipolist, southwest of Belgrade. When the plum dumplings are cut open, the dark fruit's golden centers should be succulent and sweet.

For the topping:

4 to 6 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 to 2 cups medium or fine plain bread crumbs (may use a mixture of white and whole wheat)

1/4 to 1/2 cup sugar (may use light brown sugar)

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon OR

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the dumplings:

10 to 12 Italian prune plums

6 medium-size waxy potatoes, peeled and quartered

1 egg, lightly beaten


3 tablespoons vegetable or safflower oil

1 to 3 tablespoons flour

For the topping: In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Gradually add 1 cup of the bread crumbs, then 1/4 cup to 1/2 of the sugar, stirring to combine thoroughly. Taste (the mixture should not be too sweet) and add more bread crumbs or sugar, as desired. Add the cinnamon or vanilla extract, if desired. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

For the dumplings: Wash the plums and pit them by cutting a small slit along one side of the fruit, then pressing on each end. The pit should pop out easily if the plums are ripe. Set aside.

Place the potatoes in a large pot of lightly salted water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, cooking for about 15 minutes, until they are easily pierced with a fork. Drain and process through a potato ricer and transfer to a large bowl, or place the potatoes in a food processor and pulse until lump-free. Add the egg, a pinch or two of salt to taste and the vegetable or safflower oil, mixing well. Gradually add just enough flour, so that the potato dough becomes firm enough to hold its shape when formed around each plum. Enclose each plum in a thin, even 1/8 -inch layer of dough by rolling the fruit individually in your hands. (You may have some dough left over.) At this point, the dumplings can be covered and refrigerated for up to 6 hours.

When ready to cook, bring 2 quarts of water barely to a boil (not a rolling boil) over medium-high heat. Cook the dumplings, working in batches, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until they float to the surface. (If the fruit splits during the cooking, that's okay.) Using a slotted spoon, drain slightly and transfer to a serving platter. Sprinkle topping generously over the dumplings or roll the dumplings in the topping to coat. Serve warm.

Per serving (based on 6): 378 calories, 6 g protein, 52 g carbohydrates, 17 g fat, 57 mg cholesterol, 6 g saturated fat, 193 mg sodium, 4 g dietary fiber


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