Oven-Roasted Quinoa + Spiced Apples, Carrots, & Red Onions

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Warm and nutty quinoa mixed with fresh lemon and parsley paired with roasted spiced vegetables. A lovely combination of unusual flavors, the bite of the red onion with the sweetness of the apple all tied together with a hint of cardamom. Serve as a side dish with chicken or fish.

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Oven-Roasted Quinoa + Spiced Apples, Carrots, & Red Onion

1/2 tsp ground cardamom

1/2 tsp ground coriander

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 tsp salt

3 medium carrots

1 medium apple

1 medium red onion

1 1/2 tbsp EVOO

i cup quinoa, rinsed

zest of 1/2 a lemon + 2 tsp lemon juice

1/4 cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a small bowl stir together the cardamom, coriander, pepper, and 3/4 tsp of the salt. Peel the carrots, slice in half length wise then into one inch pieces. Half and core the apple and slice into one-inch cubes. Half and thinly slice the red onion. In a 9 x 13 inch baking dish, add the carrots, apples, red onion and EVOO. Add the spice mixture and stir to combine.

In a 8 or 9 inch baking dish add the rinsed quinoa and spread into an even layer. Place the quinoa and the vegetables in the oven. Toast the quinoa until fragrant and golden, about 8 minutes, then pour 2 cups of water over the quinoa and loosely cover the dish with a sheet of aluminum foil. Cook the quinoa until it looks fluffy, about 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven, fluff with a fork, re-cover with the foil and set aside.

Meanwhile continue to roast the vegetables, stirring occasionally, until onions start to blacken around the edges and the carrots are tender. About 30 minutes total.

Transfer quinoa to a serving dish, stir in remaining 1/4 tsp salt, the lemon zest and juice, then parsley. Serve with vegetables.

* I wrote this recipe down at some point in the last two years and can’t remember where it came from.

~

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Red Cabbage Summer Salad with Roasted Walnut Oil

As rain dances were invented in the hopes of bringing rain, this salad was concocted in the spirit of Spring. May it bring to you warm weather and soon.

I feel sorry for red cabbage. It does not get the glory and honor it deserves. As a child, in my lovely school cafeteria, I would always pick this usually stringy vegetable out of my salad. Why would anyone want this squiggly purple stuff messing up a perfectly good meal of iceberg lettuce and ranch dressing, right?! Even when working as a waitress in college we were instructed to leave it out when preparing salads (bags of it would be included with the lettuce). Where does all the red cabbage of the world go?? Thanks to a new found interest in vegetables of all kinds, and a little lemon zest, I am proud to say red cabbage has found a new place in my heart.

 While walking through my neighborhood market I spotted a box full of these crazy purple orbs. I continued walking by. Stopped. Turned around… and walked back. Don’t you love those moments. They were eye catching, a real beauty. A color so deep, so rich, there is no way they can’t be tasty. Throwing my doubts of cabbage and anything slaw related out the window I put one in the shopping basket. Summer slaw for dinner.

Spring came to New York. It teased us for a few days. A few days. Everyone was outside, flooding the streets and parks, in sun-dresses and sunglasses. Then right as I was settling into the idea of beaches, fruit sorbet, and drinks with cute garnishes the weather plunged back into the 40’s. I refuse to accept this. In rebellion I made this salad. It brings the feeling of summer to your tongue at least! I also am continuing to wear open-toe shoes and no stockings. I am cold and stubborn and hope that, combined with this salad, rays of sunshine grace us once more. I recommend if you still live somewhere with winters chill just trying the salad.

Red Cabbage Summer Salad

zest and juice of one lemon

1 tbsp + 2 tsp roasted walnut oil

sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste – I use pink Himalayan salt

1/2 head chopped red cabbage, thinly sliced

2 green onions chopped, diced

2 large carrots ribboned

sesame seeds

thinly sliced radishes (use as many or few as you like)

In a small bowl add lemon juice, zest and walnut oil. Whisk with a fork and set aside. In a large bowl toss cabbage, carrot ribbons, radish slices and chives. Add dressing and sprinkle in sesame seeds, at least 1 tbsp. Toss. Garnish with lemon slices and sesame seeds and serve immediately! If you are making this ahead of time save the dressing for last. Whisk together the ingredients and toss right before eating, the fresh lemon flavor dulls overnight in the fridge.

Roasted Eggplant and Tomato

The anticipation of summer is in the air. And along with the lazy afternoons I’m daydreaming of spending on a picnic blanket, somehow the work load picks up. Funny how these two are playing hand in hand. To cheer myself up I induldged in purchasing this lovely lovely book that I have been awaiting to read: la tartine gourmande. It is absolutely spectacular in every way. My friends laugh but I know that if you are reading this and love food/cooking like I do then wanting my life to be more like a cookbook is not crazy. One day…..one day.

BUT. . . . Until that day I have some equally delicious eggplant to share.

Eggplant has become my new favorite food. I can’t get enough of it….One evening I set out to make stuffed eggplant…became distracted by the roommate and ended up chopping and talking till I had a bowl full of eggplant circles instead of the intended slice down the middle. No matter…for then this dish was born and it is as easy as pie to make. Chop. Roast. Eat.

Roasted Eggplant with Tomato

One regular eggplant – rinsed and chopped (anywhichway)

I large can (28 oz) of diced tomatoes (fresh will be great when in season)

2 cloves chopped garlic – or a large spoonful minced

seasoning to taste (salt, pepper, garlic powder, dried thyme, dried basil)

Olive oil

Shaved parmesan cheese to top

Grease a baking sheet and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Rinse and chop the eggplant and mix in a large bowl with tomatoes. I drain some but not all of the juice, most will cook away regardless. Add garlic and a few dashes of spice. I normally toss a bit of olive oil in as well. Stir, then lay in an even layer on the baking sheet. Cooking times will vary around 45 min to an hour, I’ve done two before, and everything should be roasted perfection. Serve hot with shaved parmesan and Enjoy the tantalizing taste of eggplant.

Rosemary Roasted Potatoes for Two

A taste of heaven.  The Potato.

In all of its creamy goodness.

I made a quick stop into a local health grocery earlier this week and left with one large bag full of red and baby sweet potatoes.  Normally sweet potatoes are huge but they had a wide selection of tiny sweet potatoes, great for when your cooking for one. {!}

And so I welcome you to the –

Rosemary Roasted Potatoes for Two

Or if you really like potatoes, like myself, this is easily a recipe just for one…

Taking one small sweet potato and three reds, chop them, any which way, shape, and thickness that your heart desires.

In a bowl toss with 1-2 tbsp of oil, you may need more  just enough to get an even coating over everything, any oil will work fine ~ I used grapeseed.  Add a dash of salt and a few shakes of pepper, toss again.  Fresh rosemary is always amazing but dried will work just as good, roughly a tbsp.  put in a bake safe dish and into the oven at 400 degrees until tender, 25-35 mins.

When your kitchen is filled with the tantalizing essence of baked rosemary you know your potatoes are almost done and that it’ll be a good night.  One day I will invent an herbed tomato based dipping sauce to accompany this side dish but until then ketchup does the trick.

~ Happy Potato Eating ~

Rosemary Salt and Pepper Roasted Butternut Squash Seeds

Oh Boy ~ is that a mouthful to say..

But OH so worth it.

Remember how I said it would be in your best interest to keep the seeds from the butternut squash?  Well this is what you do with them 🙂

Unfortunately one squash does not yield a large portion of seeds, but enough to make a small batch with.

Rosemary Salt and Pepper Roasted Butternut Squash Seeds

This recipe is a short one

Once the seeds are rinsed, all squash flesh removed, and patted dry place them in a small bowl.  Add oil of choice, I used grape seed again, about a tbsp until covered.  Then add a sprinkling of salt and pepper and a healthy tbsp of rosemary (dried or fresh, whichever is on hand).

Place on a small baking sheet lined with foil or oil and bake on 300 for 10-15 mins.  Times will differ but seeds will brown on the outside, and will begin to pop when they are ready to come out.

Though I am sure when your house starts to smell like heaven you’ll know they are ready.

Bon Appétit!