Monday, November 13, 2006


Walking home tonight in the cold, I thought I smelled chili (I later figured out it was curry). Either way, my mind was made up. I had some dry red lentils, and bought some big butter? beans and black beans. I'm pretty sure chili doesn't exist in Japan, so I really am winging it.

I used:
2/3 C dry red lentils
1 3/4 C water
(Double the water portion of dried lentils plus some for good measure. You don't want it sticking to the pan, youc an always cook it down).

Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for about 25 minutes.

Then I added:
Probably 1 C chopped onion
Hand full of chopped tomatoes
pre-cooked black and big beans of some sort
1 tsp of garlic puree
1 Tbsp soy sauce (for salt)
2 Tbsp ketchup (I really needed tomato sauce)
1 C pre-cooked macaroni*

spices to taste:
dried chilis
chipolte tabasco sauce
garlic tabasco sauce
thyme, parsley, oregano, basil

So simmer all your veggies and beans and spices and what not for about 5 minutes.
Don't burn your tongue scarfing it down!

I know it doesn't really look like chili, (it would if I had tomato sauce), but I work with what I got! As you can see, I bought a pointsetta tonight. Really fits the theme of "It's getting cold and I want to be warm with warm food"

*I may get some flack for putting pasta in chili. The "old country" theory is you put stuff, like pasta, in your food to stretch it out, so you get more without using more of the main ingredients. You pick up techniques from your family when you're learning to cook! REPREZENT.
(At least it's not ON spaghetti. Macaroni is the only acceptable pasta to use.)

Thai Tofu

Maybe I haven't been properly introduced to Thai food, but I'm not a fan of it. However, I did try some Thai Sweet Chili Sauce and was won over. So then began the process to search out anything to put this luscious sauce on.

I used:
1/2 block of firm tofu, turn off into chunks, pan-fried in 1 Tbsp of grapeseed oil
Diced onion
Diced green pepper
Chunks of zucchini
2 Tbsp Thai Sweet Chili Sauce

Fry tofu until golden brown and slightly crispy. Add veggies til soft. Add 1 Tbsp of chili sauce to simmer in for a minute.

Serve with a side of brown rice (3/4 C). Pour the other tablespoon of sauce over the top. Chow down!

519 Calories. 43 Carbs. 29g fat, 28g protein.
(to half the fat content, leave out oil, and subtract 120 calories)
I know that looks like a lot but thats a dinner (or lunch) that won't leave you wanting a snack!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Dinner for two

Have something nice to celebrate, or just want a nice dinner?

Mushroom Stroganoff*, Himalayan Curried Soup*, fresh bread and salad with hummus. And of course, 1993 sparkling wine. mmm!

*I knicked the base idea and edited these from Dr. McDougall's site.

I think the soup was my favorite part. I usually hate rice in soupy bases, but my-oh-my it was real good! Beans would have been good in this too.

Mushroom Stroganoff:
Macaroni, 3 unknown types of mushrooms I got in the sale bin. Needed more cornstarch. No cayenne or wine.

Curried Soup:
no coriander or celery. Used up all sorts of veggies. Zucchini, carrots, broccoli, green pepper, etc.

French Toast!

Thick slices of good bread. Let sit unwrapped in the fridge overnight.

Mix faux milk, cinnamon, and vanilla extract in a wide bowl. Lightly dip bread in both sides quickly. Do not soak!

Place in a frying pan on LOW heat! Cannot rush these things! It cooks the center and lightly browns the sides. When the bottom looks a nice pretty golden brown, flip, and repeat!

Enjoy with REAL maple syrup (if you can't get it locally made, make the sacrifice and fork over the wad of cash. It's worth it!)

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Easy Veggie Spaghetti

This dish is great because its dirt cheap. Generic pasta and veggies in the discount section makes it taste oh so much better and fresher!

Today I used about 65 grams of spaghetti pasta, broken in half. I think that may be half of the one serving "spaghetti hole" calculator.

green pepper
frozen carrot, peas, corn mix.
mushrooms (at the end)

I also steamed some greens at the very end. (I don't know what these are, they were a gift.. maybe radish sprouts?)

COOK your choice of pasta

BLEND for sauce:
big tomato
random chunks of: zucchini, mushrooms, garlic, onion, green pepper
italian herbs

The sauce turned out sort of runny, so just add more veggies. you could even make it green sauce!

After draining the pasta, I added it back in the pan with the sauce to heat it up, and cook it down a bit to make it thicker. I added some freshly chopped tomatoes too.


Everything except the pasta and frozen veg mix was FRESH. wow, so good.

(oh poo, my neighbor just stopped by and gave me carrots! that would have been so wonderful in this!)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Curry Burgers

I stayed in a bit sick today, but thankfully I whipped up some patties last night and froze them in my time of need! And I can't stop eating them!

I used:
a can of chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans)
1/4 chopped onion
handful of mixed frozen veggies (corn, peas, and carrots)
a couple shakes of Garlic Tabasco

curry powder
garlic powder
italian seasoning mix
flour (to bind) (about a small handfull)



sautee the BASICS until soft. Transfer to bowl and add DRY ingredients.

When it's sticking together because of the flour, its good. SEASON TO TASTE. Make into patties, your choice of size. Dust in cornmeal.

When frozen, they are ready to use! I have only pan fried mine, so I do not know how they would come out in the toaster oven.


Shown on some baguette bread with onions, lettuce and cherry tomatoes. Left over potato soup (see previous entry) and a side of potato chips.

***You could use any type of beans or bean combination, along with any type of spices or veggies. I made more of a Curry patty. Maybe try a Southwestern patty with black beans and corn and cilanto!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Potato Soup

By Rex Allen and V. Ronin

Once upon a time, in the cold, heartless days of lake-effect weather, Rex and I perfected a soup that would satisfy our souls and bellies before braving the dark evenings of work.

non-dairy drink(optional)
Garlic powder
Italian herb mix (or just oregano, basil, parsley, pinch of rosemary and thyme)


Cut your potatoes to the size of chunks you want (I leave the skins on). Today I used 4 medium sized white potatoes. Boil for about 10 minutes, or until they easily fall apart when pierced with a fork, chopstick, skewer, what-have-you.

After about 5 minutes, throw in a handful of chopped carrots and chopped onions into the boiling water. (Today- 1 carrot, quartered long ways, and chopped. 1/2 onion large chunks)

When potatoes are done, ladle about half of the veggie chunks and broth into the blender. We add a few hefty spalshes of regular soy milk to this for the added cream factor. BLEND until thick and uniform.

Add the blended mix back into the pot. Add a generous amount of garlic powder, and a few hefty shakes of salt. "Pepper" with your italian seasonings. Stir. Taste, and adjust the spices as you like. Serve and garnish! Rex liked his with lots of fresh pepper on top. I used parsley for a pop of color and flavor.


**And I actually found fresh baguettes! I bought two to freeze one, since the store isn't close by. I'm so happy!


For years and years and years growing up, I turned up my nose at the polenta my Grammie would (and still occasionally does) make for my dad. Even when I ate meat, it looked unappetizing, bland. Possibly a texture issue.
In my early vegetarian teen years, knowing that your tastes change, I attempted to try this mush. But the mush factor, to a person who will have a gag-reflex on soggy bread, well.. it didn't work out. My mom stated I needed to pan fry it and add- NO NO NO! I wouldn’t even let her finish. I wouldn’t even pan fry my pierogies! (of course now, fry those babies up!) I wasn’t going to happen!
Last summer, I gave that weird tube of mush another shot. And I pan fried them. And I would put them in the middle of a fresh biscuit, maybe with a little Tofutti cheese... tasted exactly like an egg mcmuffin (only healthier and moralier) . Sometimes I would get the basil flavor, or just add some basil and garlic. I was really liking this polenta stuff.
Last week I visited a Brazilian grocery store tucked in an alley. I got some Pizza flavored crunchy things, and Polentina, which I only assumed was polenta! Bought some in a heart beat.
I have never made polenta from a mix, so I broke down and used the magical forces of the internet. I found this wonderful list of how to make polenta, sauces, and topping ideas.

I don’t like to use the microwave, but this was a very easy recipe with a smaller portion.

3/4 cup Polenta
3 cups broth
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Mix the Polenta, broth, and salt in a 3-quart pyrex bowl. Cover and microwave on high for 8 minutes. Remove and stir briskly until well blended. Microwave for another 2 to 3 minutes for thicker Polenta.
The Polenta may be eaten as soft Polenta at this point, or you may spoon it into an oiled baking dish and let it cool until it gets firm.
When firm, cut into pieces and reheat in the microwave for 1 or 2 minutes, or pan-fry in a nonstick pan with a little oil.

Cooled and sliced


Looking delicious!

I put it in my bread pan, cooled it, cut it, fried it with some basil, garlic, oil. That hit the spot! MMMM.
Later, I pan-fried some of the leftovers with tomato sauce and basil until crispy! Now that’s good eatin’!
**Embarrassing side note: As I took the bowl out to stir it, upon smelling it, I exclaimed to myself out loud: “This really DOES smell like Brazil! … How does I know that?! …. How does I… oh my…”

The fact that I have never been to Brazil and the poor grammar clearly shows I am going crazy here. Maybe it was the micro-waves.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Stuffed Peppers

The most important thing in cooking, to me, is music. If you had a bad day, it will be reflected in your food. So throw some tunes it and get your booty wigglin’. Not only will it relieve stress, your food will also be happier!

And with bad days come comfort food. Today’s comfort food is Stuffed Peppers, lots of starchy, earthy ingredients.

What you need:
Peppers (any color will do, I got discount ones)
Rice (any type- cooked)
Onion- diced
Cabbage- chopped
Tomato soup/sauce/anything liquidy tomatoey
Tofu or veggie cheese (opt)
Baking dish of some sort

Chop the tops off the peppers and cut those innards out of ‘em. Set aside. Chop up as much onion and cabbage you like, I only used a little, since my peppers were so small. You’ll probably want your portion of cooked rice to be at least twice that of your cabbage and onions. Sprinkle with salt.

Mix. Stuff peppers with goodies, placing the extras around them in the dish. I added a little squished up tofu in place of cheese on the tops.

NOTE: you can mix your tomato stuff in with it (as seen in the picture), or pour it over top of everything if it’s real liquidy. Normally tomato soup is used, but I just used canned chunky tomatoes to which I added a splash of soymilk to make it creamy as well as garlic and oregano.

Place pepper tops on peppers, cover dish in foil, bake 40 min at 350F/175C or until peppers are tender.


Things I would do differently: more spices and salt, and more tofu!! It was really good hot and squishy in there! Also, if you dont like your peppers a little crispy, you can boil them for 5 minutes to soften them up before stuffing and baking.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Fall Fritters: Banana Fritters with Sucre Pommes

Fall Fritters: Banana Fritters with Sucre Pommes
That's just a fancy title for sliced apples with sugar & cinnamon

Fall is almost here, and with the mention of donuts and cider, I knew I had to have some.

I started with a one smashed banana, added some milk and a splash of veg. oil and mixed. I mixed in a pre-packaged pancake mix (that could also be used for muffins, pound cake, and donuts) and cinnamon, until it was slighty firm, adding flour to deter the stickiness.

In a frying pan full of vegetable oil on low, I added little hunks of dough. Fry until golden, flip and repeat with the other side. Place on paper towel. Repeat.

In the mean time, I sliced half an apple in thin slices. I placed them on a sheet of foil, adding a distrubing amount of sugar, and cinnamon. I wrapped the foil around the apple slices, making a pouch. I placed it in the toaster oven at the medium setting for about 15 minutes. When the apples are tender, and the sugar has become a lovely syrup, it is finished! (this may take a few times)

Join the fritters and apples in sugary unity. Add a bit of powdered sugar to top it off.