Friday, February 27, 2015

Red Curry Cauliflower Soup

By: Claire Tenscher

Mmm mmm, smooth cauliflower soups are great. This one has a Thai kick thanks to Red Curry Paste. 

1 large (or half an extra large!) head of cauliflower, broken into florets, stems chopped
1/4 c olive oil, divided
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1-2 oz Red Curry Paste (1/2 to 1/3 of a jar)
Zest of 1 lemon
1-2 tsp lemon juice
1.5 cups +.5 cups of broth (separated)
1 can of Lite Coconut Milk*
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tbl rice vinegar

Salt/Pepper to taste
Sunflower seeds for garnish
*If you would prefer, use half a can of coconut water mixed with an equal part (about 3/4c) water. 

1. Preheat the oven to 400degrees Farenheit. Place the cauliflower on a baking sheet (lined with a Silpat if you have one) and drizzle with 2Tbl of the olive oil. Toss the cauliflower around with your hands so it is all coated. Place the baking sheet in the oven and roast until the cauliflower is golden brown with toasty tips.
2. Pour 1Tbl of olive oil into a stock pot and heat to medium. Add the onion and a dash of salt. Sautee until the onions are translucent (4minutes). Add the curry paste (more or less depending on your comfort with spicy food) and lemon zest.

3. Raise the heat to medium-high and add .5 cups of broth and the lemon juice to deglaze the pan.
4. Add the cauliflower to the pot (reserving some of the prettier florets for garnishing if you like). Add the remaining broth, coconut milk, and sugar. Stir occasionally until everything is warm. Remove from heat and add the rice vinegar.

5. Blend the soup mixture. An immersion blender is ideal, you can also use a standard blender or Cuisinart, taking care to avoid hot steam escaping from the lid. Batches work best if you aren't using the immersion blender.
6. Serve the soup with roasted florets on top, and roasted sunflower seeds if you have 'em.
Adapted from the Southern Vegetarian Cookbook

Friday, February 20, 2015

Cajun Style Orca Beans and Rice

By: Claire Tenscher

Start this recipe the night before; the beans do require soaking! We wanted to come up with a clever use for Orca beans that tied in to the flavors of Mardi Gras.  The Orca beans were a total surprise; they kept their black and white splotches after we'd cooked them. They are a mild bean with a firm texture that will hold up well in soups or bean salads like this one. 

1 lb.  Dry Orca Beans
2 Tbs  Olive oil
1 medium Yellow Onion, chopped
2-3 stalks Celery, chopped
1 small Green Bell Pepper, chopped
2 cloves Garlic, minced
1 tsp  Cumin
½ tsp  Thyme
1 tsp  Basil
¼ tsp  Sage
½ tsp  Oregano
1/3 cup  Lime juice (about 3 limes)
1-2  Bay leaves
½ cup Fresh Parsley, minced
1 tsp  Hot sauce, your choice!
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3-4 cups of cooked rice
½ cup sliced scallions

1. Soak the dry beans in water overnight in a covered vessel.  Drain the beans.
2. Heat the oil in large saucepan over medium heat.  Saute onions, celery, bell pepper, garlic, cumin, thyme, basil, sage and oregano for 7-10 minute or until soft.  Add the drained beans, bay leaves and enough water to cover everything by about an inch.  Bring to a boil.
3. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for approximately 45 minutes.  Add extra hot water if needed in order to keep all the ingredients below the water level.
4. When the beans are soft, add in salt, pepper, parsley and hot sauce to taste.
5. Serve over hot rice and garnish with the scallions.
Let the good times roll!