recipes for feeding the toddling masses...creating and posting happy and pleasurable eats for the mamas and the papas, the babies and everyone in between.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Portobello and black bean burgers

In an effort to reduce our waste, save money and eat even better I have seriously cut back on our intake of meat. I normally only purchase ground turkey, chicken breasts, the occasional pork loin and ever more rare- the elusive ground beef (the good kind of course!) As the kid is mostly vegetarian at this time (Yippee!) I found myself not cooking it. He likes to help me cook and pick things up at the farmers market each Wed. Each wed. morning we go and pick up our CSA box (go Tanaka Farms!) and with excitement go through and see what are prizes are this week. Veggies have become everything that surrounds us.

For the most part we have been eating beans and grains with our veggies. A lot of black beans, quinoa and couscous or wild rice. Cheese is a big one as well! So, while I am no vegetarian (uh, BLAT pizza anyone?) I have decidedly decreased the amount of meat we eat. Wouldn't you know that our grocery bill has been cut in half- not that meat took up that much at all but it really helped us focus on our waste or needs versus wants. Plus, those organic good for you meats and darned expensive and I will not feed my family anything less than that. We love burgers and on the rare occasion we eat one- Father's Office anyone?- we are happy folks but I don't make them in the home much anymore. I have been searching for a veggie burger that holds together and tastes delicious. I think I have found it this time. The portobello's- which the kid eats like an apple- really help the hearty factor. You can change out the black beans for pinto, kidney- whatevs. I liked topping them off with cheese and a little BBQ sauce. I served up some simple steamed green beans tossed with lemon juice, garlic, olive oil and mustard. I don't want to forget, the recipe came from Self magazine. Normally I twist and turn a lot of recipes but I kept this one to the original- mostly and it came out perfect. Next time I plan on making some variations on it- maybe some soyrizo mixed in with cilantro? Yum!


2 medium portobellos, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and diced
1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 egg whites
1 tablespoon mustard
1 tablespoon soy sauce or Worcestershire
6 tablespoons dried breadcrumbs

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook mushrooms, onion and bell pepper, stirring occasionally, until pepper begins to soften, 4 to 5 minutes. Add beans, paprika, garlic powder and black pepper. Cook, smashing beans with the back of a spoon, 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer mixture to a bowl and mix in eggs, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and breadcrumbs. Form into 4 patties. Wipe out skillet; heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium heat and cook burgers until brown and firm, 6 to 7 minutes per side.

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Saturday, May 02, 2009

broccoli and three cheese calzones

Different take on pizza night- the calzone. Same dough, different fillings. The kid and I spent all day making garden decorations out of various items. Dinner time came fast and the same ol pizza didn't seem like enough. The dad is always asking for calzones and he was in for a lucky treat tonight. They came out beautiful. Creamy and veggie filled instead and brown and toasty on the outside. I poured a little marinara on top and what a meal!


Pizza dough for bread machine- 2 pounds

1 1/2 cups Clean water- 80-90 F
1 teaspoon natural cane sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt or sea salt
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
3 1/4 cups organic unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 cup organic whole wheat flour or white whole wheat flour
few dashes of dried basil and garlic, each
2 1/4 teaspoons yeast

Place ingredients in order listed in bread pan with kneading paddle. Select dough/pizza dough setting. Press start. When done remove. Roll out how you wish and top!

1 head of broccoli, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
dried basil
salt & pepper
olive oil
3-4 cups mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup blue cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
8 fresh spinach leaves

Saute onions and garlic in olive oil until soft. Add in broccoli, red peppers and tomato. Saute until soft. Add dried basil and salt and pepper. Remove from heat and add in cheese.

Divide pizza dough into 6 or 8 pieces depending on how big you want them. 6 will yield big calzones and 8 slightly smaller. Roll them out into 8 inch rounds. Top one half with 2 spinach leaves and scoop of veggie mixture on top. Fold dough over to make a half moon. Crimp edges. Place on baking sheet coated with cornmeal or semolina flour- I like semolina! Brush lightly with olive oil and make 3 small slashes to let steam out. Bake 25 minutes until lightly golden brown. Remove and serve with marinara sauce.

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