Curried Cauliflower Bisque:
(from the Vegetarian Planet cook book)
This turned out sensational. I made it as an appetizer for my dad and mom when they came over for Dad's Day dinner. They both really liked it. My mom is lactose intolerant, and substituting soy products worked out just fine. You need a blender or food processor for this, but I bet a masher would work well, and you won't go overboard - as I did - on blending.
2 Tbs butter
1 tsp ground fenugreek (optional)
1 Tbs curry powder, store bought or homemade
1 tsp ground coriander seeds
2 cups chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbs minced fresh ginger
2 Tbs unbleached white flour
7 cups whole or low-fat milk (I used low-fat soy)
1 head cauliflower florets, cut into small pieces
1 tsp salt, or more, to taste
Fresh Ground black pepper, to taste
1. In a stockpot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the fenugrek, if you're using it, and the curry powder and coriander. Cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the onions, garlic, and ginger. Cook, stirring frequently, for ten minutes.
2. Add the flor, and cook 3 minutes more, stirring continuously. Slowly add the milk, continuing to stir so that lumps don't develop. Then add the cauliflower. Bring the soup to a boil, then turn the heat to low, and simmer the soup for 40 minutes. Add the salt and pepper.
3. In a food processor or blender, blend the soup in batches, but not to a puree; leave it a little chunky, Taste the soup, and add salt or pepper or curry powder if needed. Serve hot. Serves 6.
Comments: For a lovely sweetness, add 2 peeled and chopped parsnipsalong with the cauliflower in step 2. I garnished this with some sprigs of cilantro and almonds for presentation.
Apricot Almond Bread
(from the Moosewood Cookbook)
I made this as a snack for a party at my place and it was scarfed down. But I'm really itching to make it again, especially so I can enjoy it while sober.
1.5 cups dried apricots
1.5 cups water
2 Tbs soft butter (I'm a huge fan of this stuff)
.5 cup honey or real maple syrup
1 tsp salt
1.5 cups white flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup chopped almonds
1 beaten egg
1 tsp vanilla
.5 tsp grated fresh orange rind
Preheat oven to 350. Cook apricots in water for 10 minutes (covered, low heat). Cool completely and add butter, honey, and salt. Beat in egg and vanilla. Sift together dry ingredients. Fold everything together and spread into buttered and floured loaf pan. Bake for 1.25 hours, and remove bread from pan 10 minutes after it comes out of the oven.
I used a smallish, deep casserole dish to bake this, because I didn't have a loaf pan. Turned out great, served with butter.
Avocado and Celery Pasta Salad
(from Vegetarian and Vegetable Cooking cook book)
I had made this for a picnic, but it got rained out. It was pretty easy, and while the veg stock really gave it some flavor, I'm sure boiling the pasta in water would still taste great. I substituted the avocado with a half a bag of frozen cr0n. The mustard flavor of the dressing was really good!
3.75 cups veg stock
1.25 cups pasta shells or bows
4 stalks celery, finely chopped
2 avocados chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
1 Tbs finely chopped fresh cilantro, plus some whole leaves to garnish
1 cup grated mature Cheddar cheese
For teh dressing:
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbs cider vinegar
3 Tbs lemon juice
Grated rind of 1 lemon
1-2 tsp french mustard
1 Tbs chopped fresh cilantro
salt and pepper
1. Bring the stock to a boil add the pasta and simmer for about 10 minutes, until just cooked. Drain and let cool.
2. Mix the celery, avocadoes, garlic, and chopped cilantro in a bowl, and add the cooked pasta. Sprinkle the cheese on.
3. To make the dressing, place all of the ingredients in a food processor, and process until cilantro is finely chopped (I just shook them all in a tupperware container). Pour over salad and toss before serving. Garnish with cilantro.