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Thursday, March 8, 2012


There will be no photos at this time- a kitchen and a camera are a dangerous mix in my cooking area. My food is plain but healthy eating.Simple ingredients and mostly one pot cooking.I will never enter or win any cooking or baking contests but I cook for one- me - and enjoy my food.All meals should be followed with cup of hot tea and a small square of dark chocolate.I have a beautiful view when I sit down to eat- it faces West. I write in my journal and read.Chopsticks are used with most meals unless it is my morning oatmeal- I tried it once- too tedious. I will add more recipes as time and energy and inspiration allow. *****
Black Bean Soup
night before cooking sort rinse and soak 1 cup of black beans in enough water to cover beans.

1 cup black beans,

1 large carrot - diced,

1/2 regular size sweet potato peeled and diced,

1/2 regular size red potato peeled and diced,

2 large leaves of kale washed and chopped,

onion to taste,

garlic to taste,

optional 1 tablespoon Fantastic Foods falafel mix to add robust flavor.

3-6 cups water depending on whether you like your soup soupy or thick like a stew.
Place beans in a 2 qt sauce pan with enough water to cover at least another 2 inches and a small pinch of baking soda. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to very low and simmer for 1 hour.Begin to prepare vegetables and then add them once the hour cooking has completed.Simmer one more hour.Or longer, some brands of beans take 30 minutes more to be tender.This freezes well and makes 5-6 servings.
Pea Soup

1 cup dried split peas,sorted,rinsed,

pinch baking soda,

onion to taste,

garlic to taste,

handful kale washed and chopped,

1 small red potato peeled and diced,

1 carrot diced,

2 stalks celery diced.
Place peas in a large sauce pan- 2-3 qt, cover well with water, at least 4 cups. bring to a boil add pinch of baking soda to cut back on gasiness of the peas.Reduce heat and simmer slowly for 1 hour and 30 minutes.There should still be plenty of liquid after cooking, if dry add water. add kale onions garlic carrots celery and red potato and bring back to a boil- reduce heat and simmer another 30-45 minutes.This makes about 5 one cup servings. Freezes well. *****

Gypsy Soup

3/4 cup dried chickpeas,

3-4 tablespoons oil-olive or canola,

2 cups chopped onions,

5 cloves garlic crushed,

2 cups chopped peeled sweet potatoes or orange winter squash (or 1/2 & 1/2),

1 cup chopped celery,

1 cup chopped fresh tomatoes,

3/4 cup chopped sweet peppers,

3 cups stock or water,

2 teaspoons paprika,

1 teaspoon tumeric,

1 teaspoon basil,

dash cinnamon,

dash cayenne,

1 bay leaf,
before starting soup wash and soak chickpeas for 3 hours. Then cook for 1-1/2 hours in plenty of water on a slow simmer. After chickpeas are done drain and set aside In large sauce pan saute onions,garlic,celery, and sweet potatoes -squash in olive oil for about 5 minutes add seasonings and stock/water. Simmer covered 15 minutes, add remaining vegetables and chickpeas. simmer another 10 minutes or until vegetables are as tender as you like them. any substitutes work for the veggies- carrots for the orange and peas or string beans in place of the peppers. *****

Lentil-Pea Soup

1/2 cup lentils-sorted rinsed

1/2 cup split peas-sorted rinsed

2 tablespoons canola or olive oil

1 whole onion chopped or 1/4 -1/2 cup dried onion

5 gloves garlic minced or 1/2 teaspoon dried garlic

3 stalks celery chopped fine

2 carrots chopped fine

big handful fresh spinach -stemmed-rinsed and saved to add last.
Place lentils -peas in large saucepan- 2 -3 qt. add 4-5 cups of water Bring to a boil and simmer while you prepare the vegetables.Add the oil so the peas-lentils do not froth over too much! Add carrots, celery,onions and garlic and simmer gently for 1-1/2- 2 hours. It should thicken nicely- if too thick add another cup of water.Add spinach shredded by hand and simmer another 10 minutes. Serve over homemade bread. makes about 5-6 servings and freezes well. *****
Whole Wheat Bread

this is a bread machine recipe that I haul out of the machine before baking and pop it into a loaf tin or onto a cookie sheet (both lined with parchment paper) to bake. It can also be adapted to regular bread making by hand if you have the right temps and upper body strength.

2 cups whole wheat flour (King Arthur)

1/2 cup ground flax seed

1/2 cup toasted wheat germ

1/4 cup cornmeal or any other grain you like

1- 1/2 teaspoons sea salt

1 cup water plus 3 tablespoons

2 tablespoons oil

3 tablespoons molasses

1-1/2 teaspoons bread machine yeast.
Pour water into bread machine container.Add oil and molasses. In a large plastic bag, the size you would store bread in- add flour, wheat germ,flax seed, cornmeal and sea salt. Shake to mix. Slowly pour flour mixture into pan on top of water oil molasses. Gently make a little indentation in the flour for the yeast.Proceed as the direction per machine. Usually choosing a whole wheat regular cycle , medium crust 1-1/2 lb size. Machine usually takes 3 hours to do it's thing then you empty the contents into a loaf pan and bake at 350 for 40 minutes. Let cool totally before slicing- even better to put into a plastic bag and refrigerate over night. I freeze it once it is sliced. It keeps well. I serve this at the bottom of a bowl when eating soup, also makes good sandwiches.

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