Closet Cooking Logo
Showing posts with label Weekend Herb Blogging. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Weekend Herb Blogging. Show all posts

Pomegranate Tabbouleh Salad

Pomegranate Tabbouleh Salad


The other day when I was enjoying my pomegranate and pistachio whole wheat couscous salad it reminded me a little of tabbouleh. Tabouleh is a Mediterranean parsley salad that also commonly includes things like bulgur, mint, tomatoes, etc. I always enjoy whole grain salads and I was thinking that one would make for a nice light day before T day meal. For the pomegranate tabbouleh salad I went with the standard tabbouleh components and then I added pomegranate seeds and some of the pomegranate vinaigrette from the pomegranate couscous salad for the pomegranate components. From there I added some chopped walnuts and some feta to make the salad a bit heartier. The pomegranate tabbouleh salad turned out great! The the bulgur was light and fluffy and the pomegranate vinaigrette ensured that it stayed nice and moist. I really enjoyed the salty feta and juicy sweet and tart pomegranate combo. The large amount of parsley and mint made the salad seem so fresh and vibrant. I will definitely be making this pomegranate tabbouleh salad again!

Pomegranate Tabbouleh Salad

(makes 4 servings)
Printable Recipe

Ingredients:
1 cup water
1/2 cup bulgur
1/2 cup parsley (chopped)
1/4 cup mint (chopped)
1/4 cup green onions (chopped)
1/2 cup tomato (chopped)
1/2 cup cucumber (chopped)
1/4 cup walnuts (toasted)
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
1/4 cup feta
3 tablespoons pomegranate vinaigrette

Directions:
1. Bring the water to a boil and turn off the heat.
2. Mix in the bulgur, cover and let sit for 20 minutes.
3. Toss the bulgur with the parsley, mint, green onion, tomato, cucumber, walnuts, pomegranate seeds and feta in the pomegranate vinaigrette to coat.

Similar Recipes:
Tabbouleh
Pomegranate and Pistachio Couscous
Roasted Butternut Squash and Pomegranate Salad
Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Salad
Pomegranate and Roasted Tomato Bulgur Salad
Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad
Apple and Pomegranate Quinoa and Kale Salad with Feta in a Curried Maple Dijon Dressing

Tartar Sauce

Tartar Sauce

Fish and chips just isn't the same without tartar sauce! Although there are a lot of different recipes out there, tartar sauce is commonly made from mayonnaise, chopped capers and chopped dill pickles. Since there is already dill pickle in the mix I like to add some dill which is of one of my favorite herbs. I like the way that lemon juice really brightens up mayonnaise and it does a great job of it in tartar sauce. When eating fish and chips I like to dip both the fish and the chips into the tartare sauce. Tartar sauce also goes really well with a lot of other seafood dishes. The addition of some tartar sauce makes a quick and tasty fish dish. I also like to add tartar sauce to things like crab cakes or other seafood patties in addition to serving it on the side or on top.

Let me know how you like to use tartar sauce.

Ingredients:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon capers (chopped)
1 tablespoon dill pickle or cornichons (chopped)
2 tablespoons dill (chopped)
1/2 lemon (juice)

Directions:
1. Mix everything together.

Similar Recipes:
Blue Cheese Dip

Serve with:
Crispy Beer Battered Fish Sandwich

Steak Chimichurri

Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

Chimichurri is a parsley based sauce from Argentina that is commonly used to season steak and other grilled meats. Over the last while I have been seeing some mouth watering posts about steak with chimichurri sauce and I had to try it. Though parsley may not be my favorite herb, it is probably the herb that I use most often and I liked the sound of a steak dressed simply with a tasty parsley sauce. I could not get the thought of a medium rare steak out of my mind so I decided to make steak with the chimichurri sauce. I seasoned the steak simply with just salt and pepper to allow the chimichurri sauce to be the star of the show. Ideally you would grill the steak but I do not have access to a grill so I pan seared the steak in a bit of oil until just medium rare. The steak with chimichurri sauce was good! The chimichurri sauce was nice and cool and refreshing and at the same time it had a touch of heat.

Steak Chimichurri


Ingredients:
1 pound steak (cut of choice)
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon oil
1 batch chimichurri sauce

Directions:
1. Season the steak with salt and pepper.
2. Heat the oil in a pan.
3. Add the steaks and sear at high heat until done to your preference, about 2-4 minutes per side for rare to medium rare.
4. Set the steak aside, let rest for a 5 minutes and then slice it thinly.
5. Serve topped with a generous serving of chimichurri sauce.

Similar Recipes:
Chimichurri Steak Sandwiches with Roasted Corn and Red Pepper Salsa
Carne Asada
Ribeye Steak in Red Wine Sauce
Steak Tenderloin in a Green Peppercorn Sauce

Thai Lemon Shrimp

Thai Lemon Shrimp

In my never ending search for tasty shrimp recipes I came across this recipe for Goong Maa Now or Thai lemon shrimp. Like many Thai dishes this one is a perfect melding of sweet, sour, hot and salty. This recipe calls for kaffir lime leaves which were a bit difficult to find. Luckily they keep really well in the freezer and the bag that I picked up has lasted a long time. This is another super quick shrimp dish that takes almost no time to make. The lemon and coconut milk added an amazing flavour and aroma and of course this dish would not be complete without my favorite herb, cilantro. These lemon shrimp could easily be served as an appetizer or as a meal along with some rice or pasta.

Tequila Lime Shrimp

Tequila Lime Shrimp

Shrimp is one of my favorite foods. One of the things the things that I like most about shrimp, other than their flavour and texture, is that they cook up really quickly. They take no more than a few minutes to cook and that means that many dishes that focus on the shrimp cook in no time as well. In fact, a shrimp dish can be as simple as cooking the shrimp in a tasty sauce for a couple of minutes. This is one such dish, where the shrimp are cooked in a simple tequila and lime sauce. I wanted to add a bit of freshness to the dish so I used a jalapeño pepper as the source of heat. Fresh cilantro, one of my favorite herbs, was a must. I wanted to serve the shrimp on rice so I made sure that there was a nice amount of the tequila and lime sauce left to soak into the rice. The tequila lime rice came together quickly and was really tasty.

Ingredients
1 tablespoon oil
1 shallot (chopped)
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
1 jalapeño (chopped)
1 teaspoon cumin
1 pound shrimp (peeled and deveived)
1/4 cup tequila
1/4 cup lime juice
1 teaspoon lime zest
salt and pepper
1 handful cilantro (chopped)

Directions:
1. Heat the oil in a pan.
2. Add the shallots and saute until tender, about 3-5 minutes.
3. Add the garlic, jalapeño and cumin and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
4. Add the shrimp, tequila and cook until the shrimp are pink, about 1-3 minutes per side.
5. Remove the shrimp and set aside.
6. Simmer the sauce to reduce to the desired amount.
7. Remove from the heat and add the shrimp, lime juice, cilantro and salt and pepper.

Similar Recipes:
Tequila Lime Grilled Chicken
Orange Chipotle Shrimp
Camarones en Salsa (Shrimp in Salsa)
Shrimp Tacos
Chipotle Lime Shrimp
Spicy Orange Shrimp
Cilantro Lime Shrimp
Mojito Grilled Fish Tacos with Strawberry Salsa

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Paulchen's Food Blog.

Rhubarb Fool

Rhubarb Fool

I had been impatiently awaiting for the fresh local rhubarb and on the weekend I found some at the farmers market. It was nice and thick and dark red and I picked some up. I wanted to start with something simple to showcase the rhubarb flavour and I thought that a fool would be perfect. A fool is generally pureed sweetened fruit with whipped cream or custard. This time I thought that I would make a rhubarb and vanilla yogurt fool. I simmered the rhubarb in orange juice and a bit of sugar to soften it and give a pureed like texture. I used a small amount of sugar to temper the tartness of the rhubarb just a bit. The rhubarb fool turned out amazing! I really enjoyed the flavour of the rhubarb and its tartness. Although the vanilla yogurt does not seem all that sweet by itself, it seemed much sweeter when contrasted with the tart rhubarb. Each bite was a pleasant mixture of tart rhubarb and sweet vanilla yogurt. I imagine that the rhubarb mixture would also go well on vanilla ice cream (warm even), or rice pudding or tapioca pudding etc. I enjoyed the rhubarb fool as a dessert and the leftovers as my breakfast yogurt.

Ingredients:
1 pound rhubarb (cut into 1/2 inch pieces)
1/4 cup sugar
1 orange (juice and zest)
1 cup vanilla yogurt

Directions:
1. Bring the rhubarb, sugar and orange juice and zest to a boil in a small pan stirring until the sugar has dissolved.
2. Cover and simmer until the rhubarb is tender, about 6-10 minutes.
3. Refrigerate until cold.

Similar Recipes:
Rhubarb Fool with Gingersnap Crumbs
Blueberry and Maple Pecan Granola Parfait
Mango Coconut Rice Pudding
Rhubarb Crisp
Strawberry and Rhubarb Crumble
Rhubarb Crumb Cake

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Maninas: Food Matters.

Halibut with Lemon, Butter, Caper and Dill Sauce

Halibut with a Lemon Dill Caper Sauce on Fettuccine

A while ago I decided that I wanted to try to eat seafood more often. I thought that I would like to try having seafood at least once a week. At first it was a bit challenging but now I find that I am doing it effortlessly and in fact I am eating seafood more often. Seafood is so good that it is easy. I recently came across this recipe for sea bass with a butter, caper and lemon sauce which sounded really good. Can you really go wrong with butter, lemon and wine? I also liked the recipe because of its use of capers which I have been wanting to use more often. Dill is one of my favorite herbs and I thought that it would go well in the sauce. I thought that serving the sea bass on pasta would be nice as it would soak up all of the extra lemon, butter and dill sauce. When I got to the fish monger I was all set to get the sea bass when the halibut distracted me and I ended up walking home with that instead. This dish is pretty easy to make you just pan fry the fish in some oil and butter until it is slightly crispy on the outside and yet still moist and tender on the inside and then make the sauce in the same pan. The halibut with lemon, butter, caper and dill sauce turned out just as good as I imagined it would. I really enjoy the texture of halibut, especially when fried until just crispy on the outside. I had enough halibut to make the dish a second time and I was looking for a lighter meal so I served it on asparagus.

Ingredients:
1/2 tablespoon oil
1/2 tablespoon butter
2 halibut fillets
salt and pepper to taste
1 shallot (chopped)
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
1/2 cup of white wine
2 tablespoons capers
1 tablespoon butter
1 lemon (zest and juice)
2 tablespoons dill or parsley (chopped)

Directions:
1. Heat the oil and melt the butter in a pan.
2. Season the halibut with salt and pepper.
3. Add the halibut to the pan and cook until lightly golden brown on both sides, about 3-5 minutes per side.
4. Set the halibut aside.
5. Add the shallots to the pan and saute until tender, about 3-5 minutes.
6. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
7. Add the white wine and deglaze the pan.
8. Simmer to reduce the sauce a bit.
9. Turn off the heat and add the capers, butter, lemon and dill or parsley.

Halibut with a Lemon Dill Caper Sauce on Asparagus

Similar Recipes:
Tilapia Piccata
Pan Seared Salmon with Dill Sour Cream Sauce
Swordfish with Amandine Sauce
Pan Seared Salmon on Spinach in Tarragon Sauce
Chicken Piccata
Prosciutto Wrapped Halibut on Asparagus Sauce
Garam Masala Roasted Halibut in a Tomato Curry Sauce

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Sweetnicks.

Lamb Chops with Pomegranate and Red Wine Sauce

Lamb Chops with Pomegranate and Red Wine Sauce

A while ago I picked up some pomegranate molasses and since then I had only used it once to make some dukkah crusted pomegranate marinated cod. I really enjoyed the pomegranate molasses and I had been itching to use it again. Since I had also been enjoying lamb recently this recipe for lamb chops with pomegranate and red wine sauce grabbed my attention. The lamb chops and sauce came together in less than a half an hour. I made sure to cook the lamb until it was just medium rare and it was nice and tender and juicy. The sauce was tasty and the pomegranate flavour really came through. The honey balanced out the tartness of the pomegranate molasses and the acidity of the balsamic vinegar creating a really nice flavour combination. Of course the rosemary went well in the sauce and I could not resist using fresh to add just a touch of green to the sauce. I served the lamb with some steamed asparagus and apricot couscous.

Ingredients:
2 teaspoons oil
4 lamb chops
salt and pepper to taste
3 shallots (chopped)
1/2 cup red wine
1/4 cup stock
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoon butter
a pinch of rosemary (chopped)
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Heat the oil in a pan.
2. Season the lamb chops with salt and pepper.
3. Add the lamb chops to the pan and cook until they reach the desired doneness, about 5 minutes per side to get a thick chop to medium rare.
4. Set the lamb aside.
5. Add the shallots and saute for 1 minute.
6. Add the red wine and deglaze the pan.
7. Add the stock, pomegranate molasses, balsamic vinegar, honey, butter and rosemary, salt and pepper.
8. Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer until it thickens to form a sauce, about 6-10 minutes.
9. Pour the sauce over the lamb.

Lamb Chops with Pomegranate and Red Wine Sauce: Meal

Similar Recipes:
Lamb Chops in Cherry and Port Sauce
Grilled Lamb Chops in Red Currant and Rosemary Sauce
Pistachio Crusted Rack of Lamb with a Pomegranate Port Sauce

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at A Scientist in the Kitchen.

Roasted Garlic Oil

Roasted Garlic Oil: Jarred

I have seen a few herb or flavoured oils on the blogsphere that have sounded pretty interesting. I recently came across a recipe that called for some roasted garlic oil and I though that it was time that I give it a try. It turned out to be pretty easy to make. It was the same as making roasted garlic except that you use a lot more oil to absorb all of the flavour. You can also add hints of other flavours like thyme and peppercorn by adding them to the oil while it roasts. The roasting garlic smelled really good and the oil retained that aroma. The oil had a really amazing roasted garlic flavour. It was well worth the effort to make. The best part might be all of the roasted garlic that is left over that you can use for other things. :)

Roasted Garlic Oil: BeforeRoasted Garlic Oil: AfterIngredients
3 heads garlic
2 cups olive oil
3 sprigs thyme
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns

Directions:
1. Cut the tops off of the heads of garlic.
2. Place the garlic in a baking pan with the cut side down.
3. Add the thyme and pepper.
4. Pour the oil over the garlic, thyme and pepper.
5. Cover with foil and bake in a preheated 300F oven until the garlic is golden brown and soft, about an hour.
6. Drain the garlic oil and set aside to cool.
7. Very Important: Reserve all of the amazing roasted garlic for other uses. :)

Roasted Garlic Oil

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Mediterranean Cooking in Alaska.

Spanakopita (Greek Spinach Pie)

Spanakopita (Greek Spinach Pie)

I have been wanting to try making spanakopita ever since I started exploring Greek cuisine. Spanakopita is a Greek pastry filled with spinach and cheese. I had been putting off making it because I had not worked with phyllo dough and it sounded a bit intimidating. Since I had now used phyllo dough to make baklava there were no more excuses to stop me from making the spanakotiropita.

Cucumber and Feta Salad

Cucumber and Feta Salad

I came across this cucumber with feta and mint salad not too long ago. I really liked everything about the salad from the crisp, cool, and juicy cucumbers to the salty feta, the fresh herbs and lemon vinaigrette. I thought that this cool and refreshing salad would finish off my lamb souvlaki dinner perfectly. Although I really liked the sound of the mint in the salad, I was already going with a dill theme in the meal so I used dill in the cucumber salad as well. The dill went really well in the salad though next time I will have to try it with the mint. This salad was really simple to make and came together in no time at all. I will be making this a lot over the summer.

Ingredients:
1 cucumber (sliced)
1 cup feta cheese (crumbled)
1/2 cup dill (chopped)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 lemon (juice and zest)
1 green onion (chopped, optional)
salt and pepper

Directions:
1. Mix the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a bowl.
2. Toss the cucumber and feta with the dill and dressing to coat.

Similar Recipes:
Horiatiki Salata (Greek Salad)
Cucumber and Feta Rolls
Creamy Dilled Cucumber Salad

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at The Well-Seasoned Cook.

Tabbouleh

Tabbouleh

I have been wanting to try a tabbouleh salad for a while now. A tabbouleh salad is a salad that is made with bulgar, parsley, mint, tomatoes, green onions, lemon juice and olive oil. From what I understand, in a more traditional tabbouleh the parsley is supposed to be the primary ingredient. I decided to make my salad a bit more balanced, though there was still a lot of parsley in it. This is a pretty simple salad and it is full of fresh herbs and vegetables. I quite enjoyed the tabbouleh salad. The lemon juice and the olive oil added a surprising amount of flavour and the mint brought the freshness to a whole new level. If you are a parsley lover then this salad is for you. I saw a few recipes for tabbouleh that called for the use of cinnamon and or allspice which sounded interesting. I will have to play around with the tabbouleh and different spices.

Ingredients:
1 cup water
1/2 cup bulgur
1 cup parsley (chopped)
1/4 cup mint (chopped)
1/4 cup green onions (chopped)
1/2 cup tomato (chopped)
1/2 cup cucumber (chopped)
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Bring the water to a boil and turn off the heat.
2. Mix in the bulgur, cover and let sit for 20 minutes.
3. Toss the bulgur with the parsley, mint, green onion, tomato and cucumber.
4. Mix the lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.
5. Pour the dressing onto the salad, toss and serve.

Similar Recipes:
Pomegranate Tabbouleh Salad
Roasted Asparagus and Red Pepper Farro Salad
Aztec Quinoa Salad
Pomegranate and Pistachio Couscous
Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Jugalbandi.

Dolmades (Stuffed Grape Leaves)

Dolmades (Stuffed Grape Leaves)

Dolmades are grape leaves that are stuffed with various ingredients. I had never eaten grape leaves before and the idea of stuffing them with a tasty filling sounded really good. I have been wanting to try making them ever since I saw Peter's dolmades post. I recently came across a jar of grape leaves and the dolmades quickly made it to my meal plan.

I had a bit of trouble getting the grape leaves out of the jar as they were packed in so tightly but after that they were fairly easy to work with. I covered the grape leaves in boiling water to make sure that they were tender. (You could also boil them briefly.) I also rinsed them a few times to remove any salt from the packing liquid. The grape leaves that I got had their stems removed so that was one less step that I had to do.

Overall the dolmades were pretty easy to make though it took a bit of time to stuff all of them. They turned out pretty well. One of the reasons that I really enjoy Greek cuisine is because it commonly includes lots of mint and dill which are two of my favorite herbs. With the herbs, feta and avgolemono sauce the dolmades were really tasty! The grape leaves themselves were nice and I look forward to using them again.

Ingredients:
1 jar grape leaves
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 onion (chopped)
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
1 pound lean ground beef (or lamb)
1/2 cup Arborio rice
1/4 cup tomato puree
1/2 cup feta (crumbled)
1 lemon (zest)
1 bunch of green onions (sliced)
1/4 cup dill (chopped)
1/4 cup mint (chopped)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
* chicken stock
2 eggs
1 lemon (juice)

Directions:
1. Separate the grape leaves and place them in a large bowl.
2. Cover the grape leaves in boiling water and let soak for 20 minutes.
3. Drain the water and rinse the leaves a few times.
4. Heat the oil in a pan.
5. Add the onion and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
6. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
7. Mix the onions, garlic, ground beef, rice, tomato puree, feta, lemon zest, green onions, dill, mint salt and pepper in a large bowl.
8. Place a grape leaf on a flat surface with the vein side up.
9. Place a tablespoon of filling in the middle of the leaf and fold the sides over the filling and roll the leaf up. (See Peter's post for some good step by step photos showing how to fold the grape leaves.) Repeat until all of the filling is used up.
10. Place stuffed grape leaves into a baking dish in layers and just cover with chicken stock.
11. Bake in a 375F oven for about 1 hour.
12. Whisk the eggs in bowl over a small pan of simmering water until frothy, about 3 minutes.
13. Slowly pour in the lemon juice while whisking.
14. Add some of the liquid from the baking dish and continue whisking until it thickens.
15. Mix most of the avgolemeno sauce into the dish with the dolmades reserving some for garnish.
16. Serve the dolmades garnished with the reserved avgolemeno sauce and some chopped dill and or mint.

Similar Recipes:
Lahanodolmades (Stuffed Cabbage)
Kolokithakia Gemista (Stuffed Courgettes)
Lamb Exohiko (Lamb Stuffed Phyllo Parcels)

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at The Houndstooth Gourmet.

Moroccan Lamb Tagine

Moroccan Lamb Tagine

Recently I have come across several Moroccan dishes that have sounded pretty interesting. They are interesting because they tend to include a lot of spices and flavour combinations that I would not normally think of using. The Moroccan dishes also used dried fruit and harissa for some sweetness and some heat.

I have also come across several tagine dishes. A tagine is a clay pot with a lid that braises meat very efficiently. The tagine can be baked in the oven or it can be cooked on the stove if the tagine has a metal bottom.

In the end I decided to go with a Moroccan lamb tagine. This dish could also be made with beef but I went with lamb since there is a lot of nice looking lamb in the stores now. Since I don't have a tagine I braised the meat in a covered pot at low heat on the stove. The Moroccan inspired lamb tagine turned out really well. The flavour combinations were really amazing. The spices, the sweetness and the heat all balanced out well. I served the lamb tagine on lemon and mint couscous and garnished it with toasted almonds and cilantro and parsley. Overall it was a very tasty meal.


Moroccan Lamb Tagine


Ingredients:
2 teaspoons paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1 pinch saffron
1 lemon (zest)
1 tablespoon oil
1 pound lamb (cut into bite sized pieces)
1 tablespoon oil
1 onion (chopped)
3 cloves garlic (chopped)
1 tablespoon ginger (grated)
2 tablespoons tomato paste (I used chopped sun dried tomatoes)
1-2 cups beef stock
2 carrots (cut into bite sized pieces)
1/2 cup dried apricots (chopped)
1/2 cup dried dates (chopped)
1/2 cup dried figs (chopped)
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons harissa
1 tablespoon cilantro (chopped)
1 tablespoon parsley (chopped)
1 tablespoon toasted almond slices

Directions:
1. Mix the paprika, turmeric, cumin, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, salt, ginger, garlic, coriander, saffron, lemon zest and oil in a ziplock bag, add the lamb, mix well and marinate the fridge for a few hours to overnight.
2. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat, add the lamb, brown well on all sides and set aside.
3. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
4. Add the garlic and ginger and saute for about a minute.
5. Add the lamb, tomato paste, beef stock, carrots, apricots, dates and figs bring to a boil, reduce the meat and simmer covered until the lamb is fall apart tender, about 2-3 hours.
6. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the carrots are tender, about 20 minutes.
7. Add the honey and harissa.
8. Serve garnished with cilantro, parsley and toasted almonds.

Slow Cooker: Optionally implement steps 1-4, place everything except the cilantro, parsley and almond in the slow cooker and cook on low for 6-10 hours or high for 2-4 hours.

Lemon and Mint Couscous


Ingredients:
1 cup water
1 cup couscous
1 lemon (juice)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon mint (chopped)

Directions:
1. Bring the water to a boil and mix in the couscous.
2. Turn off the heat, cover and let sit for 5 minutes.
3. Mix the lemon juice and oil in a bowl.
4. Mix the lemon and oil mixture and mint into the couscous.

Similar Recipes:
Irish Lamb Stew
Apricot Lamb Tagine
Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Olives and Preserved Lemons
Artichoke and Fava Bean Tagine
Moroccan Nectarine and Plum Chicken Tagine
Moroccan Roasted Carrot and Chickpea Quinoa Salad
Ossobuco Tagine

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Thyme for Cooking.

Marinated Feta with Olives and Roasted Red Pepper

Marinated Feta with Olives and Roasted Red Pepper

Not too long ago Peter posted about a meze (a Greek appetizer) of marinated feta with olives that looked really good. Since I was having so many other Greek flavoured dishes this week I though what better time to try it. I went to Greek town and found some nice imported Greek feta and black olives (along with some baklava). This dish was super easy to put together, though, since I roasted my own red pepper it took a bit longer. It tasted great! The flavours all came together really nicely. Even though the feta and the olives were great, I felt that the roasted red pepper stole the show. The sweetness of the roasted red pepper went really well with the balsamic vinegar. The sweet and balsamicy roasted red pepper then went really well with the salty feta and olives. I will definitely be making this again.

Ingredients:
2 slabs of feta (cut into bite sized cubes)
1/2 cup black olives (pitted)
1/2 cup green olives (pitted)
1 roasted red pepper (sliced)
1 red onion (diced)
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon oregano
pepper to taste
squeeze of lemon juice

Directions:
1. Mix everything and let marinate in the fridge for up to 5 hours.

Similar Recipes:
Marinated Roasted Red Peppers
Feta Salsa
Zucchini Bread with Roasted Red Peppers and Feta
Roasted Red Pepper, Pistachio and Feta Stuffed Chicken

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Morsels and Musings.

Kimchi

Kimchi

Over the past few months I have been trying some Korean cuisine. One thing that keeps coming up in my exploration of Korean cuisine is kimchi. Kimchi is fermented raw vegetables. One of the most common forms of kimchi is made with cabbage and chili. Up until now I have been buying my kimchi in little jars from the store but it was a bit expensive. I have seen several posts about how to make your own kimchi that sounded pretty easy. I decided to try making my own kimchi.

Making your own kimchi turned out to be really easy. There was only a few minutes of work and a lot of waiting. I let my kimchi ferment for about 2 weeks before trying it. I did a side by side comparison with what was left of my store bought kimchi and my homemade kimchi. I liked mine a lot better than the store bought one. It had a lot more flavour and it was more balanced. Given that kimchi only gets better with age I will have to see how it is in a few more weeks. I should get started on another batch as well. I wish I had a bit more room in my fridge...

Making kimchi requires fish sauce which you should be able to find in the Asian section of your local grocery store. Kimchi also requires gochugaru which is Korean chili flakes. You should be able to find big bags of the gochugaru at your local Asian grocery store. Gochugaru is not quite as hot as red pepper flakes and is a little sweet and all round very good. It is used in many Korean dishes.

Ingredients:
1 medium napa cabbage (about 2-3 pounds)
1/2 cup salt
1 bunch green onions (sliced into 1 inch pieces)
4 cloves garlic (chopped)
1 inch ginger (grated)
1 cup gochugaru (Korean red chili flakes)
2 tablespoons fish sauce (or soy sauce for a vegetarian version)

Directions:
1. Cut the napa cabbage in half, remove the core and slice the cabbage into 1 inch wide strips.
2. Place a layer of cabbage into a large bowl and sprinkle some salt onto the cabbage. Repeat until all of the cabbage is in the bowl and salted.
3. Let the cabbage sit in the salt for a few hours.
4. Rinse the salt from the cabbage.
5. Mix the cabbage, green onions, garlic, ginger, gochugaru and fish sauce in the large bowl.
6. Place the cabbage mixture into a sealable container leaves a couple of inches at the top.
7. Seal the container and let ferment at room temperature for 2-3 days.
8. Place the container in the fridge and let ferment for a couple more days.

Recipes that use Kimchi:
Kimchi Bokkeumbap (Kimchi Fried Rice)
Bibim Guksu (Soba and Kimchi Salad)
Kimchi Jjigae (Pork and Kimchi Stew)
Kimchi Quesadillas
Zucchini and Kimchi Quinoa Salad
Zucchini and Kimchi Quiche with a Brown Rice Crust
Kimchi, Bacon and Shiitake Mushroom Pizza
Kimchi Grilled Cheese Sandwich with Gochujang Ketchup for Dipping
Corned Beef, Cabbage and Kimchi Burrito
Kimchi Reuben Sandwich

Similar Recipes:
Kimchi Version 2.0
Bean Sprout Kimchi
Pear Kimchi

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Kochtopf.

Crab Quesadillas

Crab Quesadillas

A couple of weeks ago I tried crab for the first time and I really enjoyed it. On the weekend I picked up some more frozen cooked king crab that was still in the shell. I wanted to have the crab in a dish that would not over power the crab flavour and texture. I decided to go with a crab quesadilla where the crab is marinated in a simple and yet tasty marinade. The fresh lime, jalapeno pepper, green onion and cilantro makes this dish fresh and tasty. Since the crab is just warmed and cut into bite sized pieces you get to bite into the crab and really taste it. It was quite enjoyable! The warm crispy tortilla and the melted cheese put it over the top. You can serve the crab quesadillas with salsa, sour cream, avacado, etc.

Ingredients:
1/4 pound crab meat (thawed)
1 lime (juice and zest)
1 jalapeno (chopped)
1 green onion (chopped)
1 handful cilantro (chopped)
1 teaspoon cumin (toasted and ground)
salt and pepper to taste
2 flour tortillas
a touch of butter (or oil)
2 handfuls cheese such as cheddar or jack, etc. (grated)

Directions:
1. Cook the crab in boiling water for about 3 minutes.
2. Rinse the crab in cold water to stop the cooking.
3. Remove the shell from the crab meat and cut it into bite sized pieces.
4. Mix the lime juice, zest, jalapeno, green onion, cilantro cumin, salt and pepper in a bowl.
5. Add the crab and marinate for 10-30 minutes.
6. Melt the butter (or oil) in a pan.
7. Place a tortilla in the pan and rub it around in the butter to coat.
8. Heat the tortilla until air pockets form in it flipping a few times.
9. Repeat 5-7 for the second tortilla and leave it in the pan.
10. Drain the liquid from the crab and place the mixture on the tortilla in the pan.
11. Place the cheese on and then top with the other tortilla.
12. Cook the quesadilla until golden brown on both sides and the cheese is melted flipping once.

Tip: Place a plate onto the quesadilla and flipped it from the pan to the plate and then slide it back into the pan to flip the quesadilla.

Similar Recipes:
Shrimp Quesadillas
Maryland Crab Cakes
Crab Summer Rolls with Cashew Butter Dipping Sauce
Fried Green Tomatoes with Crab Remoulade
Crab Mac and Cheese

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Swirling Notions.

Tom Yum Goong Soup (Thai Hot and Sour Shrimp Soup)

Tom Yum Goong Soup

It has been pretty cold out the last few days. The perfect weather for a nice warm bowl of soup! I had been wanting to try this tom yum goong soup since I saw it. Tom yum goong soup is billed as a hot and sour soup and this combination sounded pretty interesting. It used Thai chili peppers for the heat and lime juice for the sour. You just can't go wrong with large and juicy prawns. I added some soba noodles to give the soup some more body. I was not able to find the nam prik pao so I just omitted it. I liked the fact that the recipe called for simmering the the shrimp shells in the broth to get even more shrimp flavour. The recipe was pretty easy and the soup turned out pretty good. The tom yum goong soup was nice and tasty and I really enjoyed the hot and sour combination. All of the fresh herbs gave the soup a nice freshness that reminded me of warmer days.

Ingredients:
1 pound shrimp (peeled and deveined, reserve shells)
8 cups shrimp stock (or chicken stock or dashi)
1 inch piece galangal (chopped, or ginger)
4 kaffir lime leaves (chopped)
2 stalks lemongrass (peeled and chopped, or lemon zest)
1 cup shiitake mushrooms (sliced)
2 Thai birdseye chilies (sliced thinly crosswise)
2 tablespoons fish sauce
3 tablespoons nam prik pao (roasted red chili paste, optional)
1 pound soba noodles (optional)
1 lime juiced
1/2 cup cilantro (chopped)
1/2 cup green onions (sliced into 1/2 inch pieces)
roasted unsalted peanuts (roughly chopped, optional)

Directions:
1. Bring the water, shrimp shells, galangal, kaffir lime leaves and lemon grass to boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
2. Strain the solid bits and discard them.
3. Simmer the broth, shiitake mushrooms, chilis, fish sauce and nam prik pao for 20 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, cook the noodles as directed on package.
5. Add the shrimp to the soup and simmer until cooked, about 2-3 minutes.
6. Remove the soup from the heat and add the noodles, lime juice and cilantro.
7. Garnish with the green onions and peanuts.

Similar Recipes:
Tom Yum Gai (Thai Hot and Sour Chicken Soup)
Tom Yum Baked Tilapia
Tom Yum Grilled Shrimp
Penang Kung (Prawn Penang Curry)
Spicy Shrimp on Coconut Rice
Shrimp and Roasted Corn Chowder
Pad Thai Soup

Looking for more soup recipes?

Edamame Salad

Edamame Salad

I recently tried edamame (soy beans) for the first time at a Japanese restaurant. It was served as an appetizer in the shells with a seasoning on it. I quite enjoyed it. I remembered bookmarking a recipe for a shelled edamame salad that looked good. The next time that I went to my local Japanese grocery store I picked up a bag of the shelled frozen edamame. The shelled edamame is super easy to cook, you just boil it for a few minutes and it is done. The edamame salad was pretty good. I really liked the texture and flavour of the beans. The dressing was nice and tasty and the almonds added a nice crunch. Of course the mint added a nice refreshing touch to the salad. The next time I make this I think that I will try it with shiso leaves. Once made the salad kept well in the fridge. I was able to enjoy it for a few nights during the week.

Ingredients:
1 pound shelled edamame
1 tablespoon sesame seed oil
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon chili sauce
1/4 cup sliced almonds (toasted)
2 green onions (chopped)
1/4 cup chopped basil
1/4 cup chopped mint

Directions:
1. Cook the edemame by boiling them for 3 minutes.
2. Drain and let cool.
3. Mix everything else in a bowl.
4. Toss the edamame in the dressing to coat.

Similar Recipes:
Edamame Dip
Peas with Pancetta and Shallots
Green Vegetables with Black Sesame Paste
Green Vegetables with Miso and Mustard Sauce

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Kuchenlatein.

Lemon Chicken

Lemon Chicken

Lemons are pretty versatile. Despite the fact that they are tart they go really well in sweet dishes. Lemons can also be used in savoury dishes though I have not had all that many. When I came across the concept of an Asian style lemon chicken dish I had to try it. Most of the recipes that I found for lemon chicken called for coating the chicken in corn starch or flour and frying it in oil. Since the chicken would then be placed in a lemon sauce and become soggy I was not too sure why it was deep fried in the first place. I decided to come up with a way of making lemon chicken without frying the chicken. In the end I decided to marinate the chicken in a lemon marinade and then saute the chicken and reduce the the marinade into a sauce. Although the dish did not turn out to be too photogenic the lemon chicken was really tasty. It had a really nice lemon flavour and it was tart but not too tart. The cilantro and green onion along with the lemon flavour made the dish taste really fresh. I think that the next time I make this I will add more chili heat to it. I will also have to try making the version with the breaded and fried chicken to compare.

Ingredients:
1 lemon (zest and juice)
2 tablespoons chicken stock
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon honey
1 small chili (chopped, or 1 teaspoon chili sauce)
1 pound chicken (cut into bite sized pieces)
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons ginger (minced)
1 clove garlic (minced)
3 green onions (chopped)
1 handful cilantro (chopped)
1 tablespoon sesame seeds (toasted)

Directions:
1. Mix the lemon zest, juice, chicken stock, soy sauce, sugar, honey, and chili in a bowl. Do a taste test here to balance out the tartness, saltiness, sweetness and heat.
2. Place the chicken into mixture and marinate for 10-20 minutes.
3. Heat the oil in a pan.
4. Add the ginger and garlic and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
5. Add the chicken reserving the marinade.
6. Saute the chicken until cooked, about 3-5 minutes.
7. Add the reserved marinade and simmer until the sauce has reduced and thickened, about 7-10 minutes.
8. Add the green onion, cilantro and sesame seeds and remove from the heat.
9. Serve on rice or noodles.

Similar Recipes:
Cashew Butter Chicken
Sesame Chicken
Ginger Pork

Take a look at the Weekend Herb Blogging roundup at Anna's Cool Finds.