Shrimp Saag Remix


When I first started cooking, I experimented with Indian dishes. I loved the Saag that I ate at a local restaurant, but I knew it was loaded with heavy cream, butter, and everything delicious for me and bad for my arteries. I tried this recipe 🙂

My Shrimp Saag Remix is served on top of a mound of Carrot Sweet Potato Mash. It’s fairly easy.

Carrot Sweet Potato Mash

Ingredients:

carrotsweetginger 300x255   Shrimp Saag Remix

Carrot Sweet Potato Mash

 

  • 4-5 Carrots, chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 2 Yams or Sweet Potatoes, peeled, chopped  into bite sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped Ginger
  • 1 clove garlic
  • dash Cinnamon
  • dash ground Cloves
  • 2 tbsp butter Butter or olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Almond Milk

Boil the vegetable and ginger until the potatoes are tender. Drain and transfer to a bowl and add butter and almond milk and more spices. Mash with a whisk until ingredients are blended and similar to mashed potato consistency. Use more or less liquid for creamier potatoes.

 

For the Saag, I combined the following ingredients:

  • 4-5 stalks of leafy greens, or around 8 cups of chopped greens (spinach, kale, swiss chard)
  • Trifecta of Awesomeness (garlic, leek, ginger) I don’t measure (maybe 1/2 cup of leek, 1/4 cup ginger, 4 cloves finely chopped garlic)
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

I sauteed the Trifecta until the leek was clear. Then I added the spices. I hear they activate when you place then in the hot skillet, before adding bulky ingredients. Once I could smell the spices, I added my greens. I cooked them until they were soft, but not soggy.

In another skillet, I cooked my shrimp (seasoned with curry and garam masala. I may have added Old Bay. There are similar ingredients.)

The Plate

topshrimpsaag 300x263   Shrimp Saag Remix

Shrimp Saag Remix

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Try a garnish with fresh cilantro, thai basil, and greek yogurt 🙂

aerialshrimpsaag 300x225   Shrimp Saag Remix

I must cook with music playing 🙂

Head Over Feet (acoustic cover) – QueenEarth

 

 

 

 

 

 

This dish serves well as leftovers. I’ve eaten it with lamb, chicken, beef, and tofu. Season to your liking, but definitely, try this healthy Saag alternative.

 

June 10, 2011
Food, Recipe

 
 

Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies


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This meal turned out to be very filling with the addition of the homemade polenta.  The best part was the polenta topped with the sauteed greens and mushrooms.

Polenta is just cornmeal and broth, cream, or water (or a combination of those) and whatever seasonings you wish to add.

The polenta made here was simply one cup of cornmeal, 3 cups of broth, and one cup of water.

To make the polenta, heat the water and broth in a sauce pan.  Once it comes to a boil, gradually stir in the cornmeal, just a little bit at a time to avoid clumping.  Continue stirring almost non-stop until the polenta reaches your desired consistency.  In this case the polenta was cooked until it started pulling away from the walls of the pan and clumped together in the pot.  It was thick but not tough.

IMG 0968 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

Cooking the polenta -- not done yet!

In the meantime, wash/chop your veggies for roasting.  Roasting is simple.. preheat your oven to 400 degrees, and prep any veggies you wish to roast.  In this case I used carrots, white yams, green beans, and Chinese broccoli stalks.   I reserved the greens from the broccoli for sauteeing.

Toss the veggies with a little olive oil, fresh chopped garlic, leek if desired, and any seasoning you prefer.  Here I used oregano, pepper, salt, thyme, and fresh rosemary from the garden.

Bake the veggies for 30-45 minutes, turning periodically to ensure they don’t burn.

IMG 0969 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

Roasted veggies - Broccoli, potatoes, carrots, green beans

Now for the sauteed greens and mushrooms.  Chop your mushrooms, greens, and asparagus (optional but delicious).

IMG 0971 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

mmm.. asparagus

 

Heat a little oil in a pan and sautee a little diced garlic and leek for a minute.  Add the veggies and sautee until wilted and cooked through but still crunchy, 5-10 minutes.

IMG 0975 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

Sauteed greens, asparagus, and mushrooms

Serve all together on one big happy plate!

IMG 0982 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

Polenta with sauteed and roasted veggies

 

or… top with curry seasoned chicken… (recipe to come):

IMG 0983 300x225   Polenta with Sauteed Greens and Mushrooms and roasted veggies

Polenta & veggies topped with curry-seasoned chicken

 

 

April 21, 2011
Food, Recipe

 
 

Kale Chips


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A substitution for potato chips? Not quite.
A yummy/healthy/low calorie snack or addition to a meal?  Sure!

  • Take your Kale (1-2 bunches), and wash and dry the leaves.  Remove the thickest parts of the stems.
  • Lay the leaves out on a baking sheet lined with foil and preheat to 350 degrees
IMG 0855 300x225   Kale Chips

Baking the Kale

  • drizzle olive oil over the kale and sprinkle with salt.  I also enjoyed adding a little garlic powder to the leaves
  • Bake until leaves are crispy/brown but not burned, about 10-15 minutes.  Keep an eye on these! Burned chips are not good..
IMG 0859 300x225   Kale Chips

Kale Chips

April 7, 2011
Food, Recipe

 
 

Amazing coconut veggie stir-fry


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I’m not sure why this turned out so freaking amazing, and there’s probably no way to exactly replicate it but you can try, and make your own combinations.. most ingredients are interchangeable ..

 

Here are some tips from yours truly:

  • Veggie ingredients == whatever is in your fridge.  Though I do recommend a combination of leafy, crunchy,  and sauce-soaking veggies.

Here’s what I mean by that, with some examples:
Leafy == kale, Swiss chard, leafy Chinese broccoli, spinach
Crunchy == broccoli, Chinese broccoli, carrots
Sauce-Soaking == broccoli florets, squash, zucchini

IMG 0901 300x225   Amazing coconut veggie stir fry

Chinese Broccoli

1. diced garlic
2. diced fresh ginger
3. diced leek (sub onion if you DARE, but it’s my enemy)

In fact, I frequently keep a tub of all these things chopped in my fridge as I can make a lot of dishes with them..

  • Things that pack punch (flavorful veggies)

1. Fennel (why should you eat fennel? cancer-preventing, vitamin c-providing, fibrous awesomeness described here)
2. ?? help.  I’m sure there are more

 

IMG 0899 300x225   Amazing coconut veggie stir fry

Fennel (if you don't know what it looks like). You can eat the whole thing! So delicious and healthy.

  • Things you can always add at the end of the cook time

1. Water chestnuts
2. Baby corn
3. Button mushrooms or regular mushrooms
4. Bamboo shoots

  • Things to top/garnish with

1. Fresh herbs (Thai basil is tops.. then cilantro/regular basil/parsley etc.)
2. Crunchy raw veggies like cucumber, radish, sprouts or snow pea shoots

  • TOP SECRET STIR FRY / CURRY TIP

I like to boil diced sweet potato or white yam until soft and then add it to the stir fry.  This makes the dish creamier and sweeter without artificial sweeteners or fattening dairy products.  It works best if the sweet potatoes start to crumble or fall apart in the stir fry

 

IMG 0904 300x225   Amazing coconut veggie stir fry

Boiling sweet potatoes to add sweetness/creaminess to a stir fry

 

Ingredients (in this stir fry):

  • 4 carrots
  • 1 whole bulb/stalks of fennel
  • 1 zucchini
  • 5 stalks of Chinese broccoli
  • 1 whole bunch of colorful Swiss chard
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup diced ginger
  • 1/3 cup diced leek
  • fresh Thai basil
  • spices/sauces: paprika, hot curry powder, ground black pepper, basil, turmeric, hot sesame oil, soy sauce.  Don’t be afraid of spices.. add hot ones a little at a time so you don’t ruin the dish. On a big pot of food like this remember it will take a lot of spice to add flavor.  Experiment.
  • **Coconut powder (to taste), 1/2 cup stock (chicken or veggie) and 1/2 cup water (or just 1 whole cup water), 1 Tbsp corn starch (for thickening)

    IMG 0909 225x300   Amazing coconut veggie stir fry

    Coconut powder from the H Mart in Catonsville

 

**I like coconut powder because you have more control over the amount you want in your dish and can add to it little by little, which also controls the ABSURD FAT CONTENT in a can of coconut milk (read: 57 grams of fat per cup…at least it is good fat).  I dislike it because you then need to make up for the creaminess.  This was accomplished with extra liquid such as chicken broth and water combined with corn starch.  Not a lot was needed as this was more of a stir fry than a curry.

 

Steps:

  • Chop all your veggies.  Keep your harder/crunchier veggies in one bowl and leafy in another.  This way everything can cook to a desired doneness without overcooking certain vegetables
  • Start boiling your diced sweet potato on one burner.  Let it boil for 5-10 minutes until soft and then set aside.
  • Start your stir-fry with a suitable oil.  I like Grape seed oil.. it’s healthy (as far as oils go), and has a high smoke point.  Add as much to your wok or pan as you need (PS you need a BIG pan or wok for this many veggies..)
Grapeseed oilIMG 0905 225x300   Amazing coconut veggie stir fry
  • Add your garlic, and leek and saute for a minute.
  • Add all your crunchy veggies.  Saute for 5 minutes or so with the heat fairly high.
  • Add ginger, hot sesame oil, and leafy veggies and continue to saute.
  • As veggies begin to wilt, add the sweet potato, spices (to taste), stock, and coconut powder
  • Once you have the flavor right and the veggies are ready to eat (still a little crisp hopefully), add a little water and corn starch to thicken it just a tad.  It helps the spices stick to the veggies, I’ve found.
  • You can top your stir fry with garnishes or more fresh herbs.  Lots of Thai basil is highly recommended.
IMG 09061 300x225   Amazing coconut veggie stir fry

Veggies being sauteed

 

EAT.  Go to bed.  Repeat.  This should make about 4 full meal portions, depending on how hungry of a person you are, and if you’re going to go seek rice because you require some form of classic ‘carb’ in your meal or if you need more filler…  etc etc, but this is delicious on its own!

IMG 0910 300x226   Amazing coconut veggie stir fry

Awesome veggie stir fry / curry-like dish

 

 


Food, General, Recipe

 
 

Beer-battered calamari, dandelion greens, and ginger, carrot and white bean soup


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Beer-Battered calamari strips (Pescatarian)

Boiled dandelion greens with olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper

Ginger, carrot and white bean soup (recipe) — cooked and blended, garnished with sauteed leek, garlic, mushrooms, and sliced carrot  (Vegan, Vegetarian, Gluten Free, Pescatarian)

Sherwood Cocktail (knockoff): vodka, St Germain Elderflower liqueur, Lemon, white wine, (Thai) basil,  simple syrup

 

wpid mms95picture 5   Beer battered calamari, dandelion greens, and ginger, carrot and white bean soup

March 10, 2011
Drink, Food, Recipe